A Day In The Life of Lotta Nieminen

lotta nieminen
When it comes to design powerhouses, there are few as prolific- and friendly- as Lotta Nieminen. I’ve been admiring her illustration work for years now and only recently realized that she’s been behind some of the branding and catalogs of my favorite designers and shops, too. After working for Trendi, Pentagram Design and RoAndCo Studio, Lotta opened her own studio where she works on not just illustration, but graphic design and art direction as well. Her client list is basically a rundown of some of the most impressive and design-forward companies working today: Hermès, New York Times, Volkswagen, International Herald Tribune, Monocle, Newsweek, New York Magazine and Bloomberg Businessweek. After reading about her work and following her online, I was so curious to see how she balances her work and life (especially when working at home) with such a busy schedule. Her answer? “The secret to an efficient work day? Taking a shower and getting dressed.” Her devotion to productivity and creativity is what I strive for every day, so getting to take a look inside an average day in her life was such a treat. I hope you’ll enjoy this day in the life of Lotta as much as I did. Thanks, Lotta!

Click through for the full post after the jump!

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8.00am: “Wake up. It’s a bad habit, but I hit my alarm clock; grab my iPhone; email. It’s a little sad, but I just can’t give that up. Because of the time difference, I grab my laptop and answer emails from Europe before my clients on that end there wrap up their work day.”

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8.40am: “Shower and getting dressed. I learned this the hard way the first time around when working from home 2 years ago: you’ll hate yourself if you work all day in your pajamas and order delivery food for every meal of the day. The secret to an efficient work day? Taking a shower and getting dressed. Who would have known?”

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9.00am: “Quick breakfast and going through my to do list for the day. I keep a very organized online calendar that helps me comprehend how much work I have going at the moment and when I can potentially take on more projects.”

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9.10am: “I started working from home in April, after my boyfriend and I moved to this new place in Downtown Brooklyn. There was a perfect nook for a nice desk space, so this is where I currently run my one-woman business from.”

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9.15am: “Going over yesterday’s meeting notes with Beautified, a beauty booking app I’ve been working with for the past year. I’m making first drafts of a couple of printed items that need to go out to be printed later this week. Flipping through some magazines for layout inspiration. I’m a recovering magazine hoarder.”

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10.30am: “This month, I’m working on a big illustration project with a lot of landscapes. I work digitally, but sometimes big surfaces are nicer to cut by hand, scan and turn into vector to keep a good looseness. I usually do this with black, thinner paper, but couldn’t find it anywhere this morning. I resort to these colorful guys instead.”

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11.45am: “Out for a meeting on Manhattan. I try to schedule meetings outside the studio to get off my butt and take a break from sitting at a computer.”

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12.15pm: “Meeting at Paintbox. I did the branding and related collateral for this newly-opened nail salon in Soho, and we’re discussing some new implementations.”

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1.30pm: “Lunch break at Cafe Gitane on my way back to Brooklyn. I’m pretty adventurous in life, but I don’t mess with my lunch: if I love something, I’ll order it every time. Here, it’s the heart of palm and avocado salad.”

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2.00pm: “I know I should really be back at the studio, but because tomorrow’s not a deadline day, I figure I’ll drop by McNally Jackson to do some magazine browsing. It’s right there, and reading magazines is definitely part of work, right?”

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2.45pm: “Back at home, and looking over the final printed samples I just received from Bec Brittain, whose branding and catalog I worked on.”

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3.00pm: “The rest of the day, I’m focusing on the revision round of a website I’ve been designing. I close my email browser, plug on Spotify and get to work.”

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7.00pm: “This has to be my favorite time of the day. The apartment never gets direct sunlight, but at sunrise it lights the wall next to the entrance, and at this hour, the one behind the studio. Trying to write a couple of last emails before heading out to meet up with friends for dinner.”

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8.00pm: “A quick revision came up and I’m running late for dinner, so I jump on a cab. I usually take the subway, but riding over the Manhattan bridge at this hour is pretty priceless.”

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11.00pm: “Back home. After checking that my inbox is up to date and going over tomorrow’s work schedule, I hesitate between Netflix and a book, and choose a book because I’m documenting my day. I love Grace Coddington’s memoir though. I grab a cup of green tea and fall asleep around 12.30am.”

  1. Samantha says:

    Love this series, especially when someone I already admire the work of pops up in it. Beautiful home Lotta! Also “I hesitate between Netflix and a book, and choose a book because I’m documenting my day.” Love it.

  2. Lena K. says:

    Since Lotte Nieminen’s two previous home tours are among my all-time favorites here at Design Sponge (or anywhere else for that matter!), I am very excited to see her Day in the Life. Thanks for sharing!

  3. Erin Austen Abbott says:

    Such a stunning space. Great feature- I love her work.

  4. Lisa says:

    Nice work! I am guessing from her last name that Lotta is Finnish?!

  5. Anabela says:

    It seems like a nice life, Lotta. Stay cool :-)

  6. Rebecca says:

    Loving all the photos Lotta! And that lit up wall is amazing.

  7. rachel says:

    fun to get a peek behind the scenes of your life :) beautiful work, gorgeous apartment

  8. Sally says:

    Such an interesting day in the life post – I’ve admired Lotta’s work for years. Her workspace is absolutely swoony!

  9. kimithy says:

    These day-in-the-life posts are my absolute favorite :)

  10. Anne says:

    Hope to see a full tour of her new place. The previous two were wonderful.

  11. Cathi says:

    “Me and my boyfriend”? Seriously?

    1. Grace Bonney says:


      Mistakes happen, thanks for pointing this one out so we could fix it.


  12. Maja says:

    LOVE her work!

  13. Joyce says:

    Her life is so quietly glamorous! I’m so enamored by her work!

  14. sakoiya says:

    Wow, didnt know you did the branding for Paint Box. I love the tone and concept. I see a consistent color palette throughout your day. Love it. Happy 2015.


  15. Alana says:

    Question: Who made the hunter green business cards?



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