California native and entrepreneurial web designer Jamie Varon wasn't supposed to stay in Paris. Her plan was to continue traveling through Europe - Spain, Sweden, Italy and beyond - all while working remotely. Our paths weren't likely to cross but thanks to the fortuitous grace of Twitter, they did.
Last August, when locals skipped out of Paris for their month-long urban hiatus, Jamie and I met for coffee at one of my local hangouts and swapped stories like old friends. At that time, she was in the grueling midst of a project she hoped would drastically transform her business.
A tight-knit friendship formed instantly and she became not only a creative inspiration but a source of support, encouragement and constant laughs (at a time when I needed them most). I've seen the project go from conception to production and knew I wanted to be involved in some capacity once it scored its wings.
As part of her company Shatterboxx with Nicole Antoinette (click here for their own web-to-world story), she's designed hundreds of logos, websites and vanity pages, including the celebrated blog The Bloggess and even my company, Lola's Cookies. But this other endeavor would mean far wider reach and an expansion of the Shatterboxx brand to previously unexplored territory.
Paper'd, a free lifestyle-inspired wallpaper app for iPhone, launched yesterday to a flurry of enthusiastic users and a laudatory feature from digital giant Mashable. Jamie is the first to admit that tricking out your iPhone isn't really necessary. Some might not even see the value in owning it. But what she has tried to do is offer professionally-designed expressions of our interests - making the device we're so attached to a little bit more representative of ourselves. I know some of you love to travel and especially love Paris, so I thought the travel collection (both with in the U.S. and abroad) would be of particular interest.
With inaugural downloads exceeding their expectations for the entire week and displays of support from travelers, athletes, musicians, designers, web geeks and everyone else in between, Paper'd 's brilliant founders are destined for digital greatness. I've already updated my phone and even caught my nosy metro-companion ogling my selection this morning!
The exciting news is that I will be collaborating with the ladies of Paper'd on a photo collection! The specifics have yet to be defined but I suspect it will have something to do with getting lost in cheeseland.
To learn more about Paper'd, click HERE. To download on iTunes, head over HERE. The app features over 200 wallpapers (which will updated regularly) is free to download and holds additional collection for in-app purchase. You can also follow their updates (with sneak peeks of future collections) on their Facebook page and on Twitter.