Stephanie Mathena

As Told By

YF Muse and Designer behind Studio Etta @stephmathena_design

talks the Young Frankk brand refresh, her perfect day, and the inspiration for her incredible work.

Please describe your perfect day.

The first thing that comes to mind is a recent day trip I took up to the north shore with my boyfriend. It was spontaneous but slow and relaxing.

What is your favorite piece of jewelry in your collection? 

My Varro ring and earrings. They hold some sentimental value because I've worn them so much that putting them on always comes with a flood of memories. I'm a nostalgic person and there's something about my YF jewelry that really ignites those feelings.

Your design work is so delicate yet impactful, where do you draw your inspiration from? 

Oh wow thank you! I find a lot of inspiration in old European signage and literature. I like when things feel refined but not overdone. Everything is obviously computerized these days, but I love going back to the roots of graphic design and finding ways to imitate old type setting techniques when things were just a little less perfect.

What was the concept behind the YF brand identity refresh? 

There's this really sleek, modern quality to YF's pieces, but also a clear appreciation of the past so it was important the identity reflected that. The logotype is built from a contemporary serif font with an underlying renaissance feel. Supporting brand elements like typography, colors and the brand monogram all lean more classical. We wanted the website to feel less "digital" and more like an old book while letting the photography shine.

How do you calm your mind after a long day? 

A good hot bath and a drawn-out skincare routine.

Is there a dream design project you are manifesting? 

I've been really fortunate to work with some incredible people these past couple years. I'd love to continue to attract great client relationships that I can continue to nurture for years to come.

Where does the name Studio Etta come from? 

I purchased my first home this past March and found through the property abstract that one of the first women to own it back in the early 1900s was named Etta. I'd been thinking of a studio name for years and as soon as I saw that, it felt so right.

Any recommendations for things to do and places to see in Minneapolis? 

The MIA (Minneapolis Institute of Art) is a must-see in my opinion! It's completely free and has some of the best rotating galleries in addition to their permanent collection. To eat, I love The Lynhall for pastries and breakfast, The Bungalow Club for dinner, and Nightingale or Petite Leon for oysters and martinis.

How did you find your passion for design?

I was really interested in photography and editorial design in highschool. My dream was to work for a publishing company designing magazine spreads. I ended up getting a job at an agency and really fell in love with branding.