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A Maker's Life

The Greenery

The Abstracts

Hello, I’m Brett Torrey Haynes, the editor and designer behind IAMTHELAB. Learn more about IATL and discover the creative services that I offer.


IATL showcases modern makers, artists and designers from around the globe. I also love modern design, so you’ll find modern architecture and graphic design inspiration here too.

The IATL shop features my original graphic prints and accessories. Be sure to stop by often to see what’s new and next.

Meet The Makers

“Founded in 2010, Croft House aims to encompass the sophisticated, relaxed feel of the California lifestyle  through their handmade pieces of statement furniture. Their extensive  design experience effortlessly transforms ideas and vision into functional, quality furniture.”

Croft House considers negative space to be just another material at their disposal, this perspective allows their design team to present scale in unique and exciting ways. Commingling these defining characteristics of modern design with the utmost commitment to the use of natural materials, Croft House creates a new generation of timeless furniture.

IATL: What inspired you to begin your collection?

At the inception of Croft House, we built individual pieces and sold them on Craigslist. Occasionally, a potential customer would come and look at the piece but not buy right away. A completely different customer would come in and make the purchase, and then the original potential customer would call back ready to move forward. This gave us an indication that the designs we were creating had some staying power and served as the inspiration to start a true collection (our Railcar Series was our first!)

IATL: Describe your creative process. Where do you start?

Good question! It varies from piece to piece, but for the most part, we’ll find a component that we love – be it a material, base design, whatever – and start building around that. We’re incredibly collaborative, which we’ve found helps to keep us on brand and true to our aesthetic.

IATL: How do you maintain your creative drive?

We’re lucky as we get to constantly create personalized pieces for our clients. Regularly curating our pieces to work for our clients’ spaces helps to keep the creative juices flowing pretty consistently!

What materials do you love to use?

We’re big fans of natural materials. Industrial steel, various marbles and stones, several species of wood (some reclaimed some not) and recently leather.

Read the rest of  the Croft House interview here.


“There are a million ways to be creative but only one way to discover creativity: start creating.”

Inner Circle




“My vision for Design Seeds has always been to give … to inspire … and with a view for the long game versus faster, bigger cash. My whole intent for the site was to create what my dream space as a designer is. This is ultimately to offer a spot for folks to explore, find serendipitous inspiration, and discover some really cool creatives who collaborate through inspiration images.”

How more creatives don’t know Jessica Colaluca is a mystery to me. We’ve known each other for almost a decade(!!!) and her influence as the designer of the most well-known color palette platform on the web is nothing short of extraordinary. Design Seeds has been poorly imitated by knock-off artists and major brands alike, yet Jessica maintains that human edge that has helped her grow a truly remarkable independent business. Jessica’s palettes have inspired crafters, web and graphic designers and artists all over the world.

At one point, a whooping 40K per day of Pinterest pins/repins came from Jessica’s website. As an independent artist, I believe Jessica is one of the most important voices in the creative community and I’m thrilled to have her as part of the Inner Circle, my collective of artists, makers and creatives who have insights and experience worth sharing. Let’s get to know her better.

IATL: What lead you to start the Design Seeds platform?

One of the motivators for me to leave my in-house design position back in 2009, was my frustration with corporate firewalls. These nuisances were often blocking the freshest and most inspiring design content, important information, and emerging sites. So when I got a wild hair and quit to start my own consultancy, I wanted to be part of the excitement I saw emerging online. And since color is what I do, live, and breathe, I decided to build a blog around what I know best. Having kept color journals for nearly two decades, I translated those into the Design Seeds blog.

My original readers were former colleagues, industry folks, and clients (who were all I candidly expected as colorwork and forecasting are a large part of my consulting), but Facebook and Pinterest changed all that. In 2010, the Design Seeds reader grew to a very diverse crew.

Read the rest of this informative interview with Jessica Colaluca here.


“The funny thing about imposter syndrome is that someone probably sees you as the genuine article.

Get Inspired


“When you start to embrace your creativity, your creativity embraces you.


I’ve designed brand identities for makers and small business. I also offer creative consulting with an emphasis on e-mail marketing, WordPress, e-commerce and social media management. Learn more about my services here.