It’s official, Kraft Salad Dressing is now seeing other foods.

In the busy world of advertising, it’s easy to lose track of time and forget to post important things like the big ad campaign you launched. 5 months ago.

Without further ado (and before another 5 months flies by) here’s a mini tribute to the fun Kraft campaign la and I poured our hearts into this year.


tired & concepting

So here’s what happened.
After we realized that salad dressing is used on so much more than salad, we convinced the awesome people at Kraft to change the name of their product line. Everyone at Chiat thought it was a fun idea! Lettuce, on the other hand, was not as stoked…

And here is an overview of the 360° campaign.

Now, on the eve of our 3-year Chiat anniversary, la and I are busy trying to sell credit cards and airplane tickets and we’re sad to say the lali blog (177 posts and 40,000 views later) has taken a back seat. But who knows! You might still hear from us from time to time ;)

Sending out lots of lali love and kisses to adgirls & madmen & lalifans everywhere,



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This year, Coachella had both la AND li

Rewind a year ago and you’ll see that la is a loyal Coachella goer. In fact, she’s gone six years straight. But this past April, in true lali fashion, we finally went together! Three days of nonstop music and desert dancing to some of our very favorite bands. It was unforgettable.

Music is not only something we both love, it’s a huge part of our jobs. Music supervision as it relates to advertising was summed up by our pal Michael Gross (who gets credit, among other things, for finding the perfect Elvis song for our Nissan “Kidzilla” spot) in this recent interview. For our current production, he and the team spent countless hours looking for the perfect tracks, then the perfect artists to perform the perfect covers, spanning every genre and era of music we could possibly think of. We finally landed on a preeetttyyyy fun soundtrack… more on that soon!! :)

And though music often comes to us at Chiat, sometimes we just have to to go to the music… So here’s a peek at what Coachella 2012 was like through the eyes of lali!

We danced… Coachella 2012

…and danced Coachella 2012

…and danced our faces off Coachella 2012

We matched our outfits, duh! Coachella 2012

and got lost in the music Coachella 2012

We ran into LOTS of Chiat friends Coachella 2012

and made awesome new pals Coachella 2012

We saw gorgeous sights Coachella 2012

and heard incredible sets Coachella 2012

We pretended we knew how to play instruments Coachella 2012

and confirmed that we would be friends for life Coachella 2012

Here’s to you, Coachella. I will definitely be back next year! Coachella 2012

(um, we already preordered our tickets…)

xo, li

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Coachella report coming soon!

lali desert dances
There was desert dancing.
There was glitter.
There was outfit-matching.
There were over 1000 pictures taken by lali.

please stand by

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Go shoeless at work? Sure!

Of our 173 blog posts, 5 have referenced our Toms shoes.

After today, we’ll be 6 for 174! That’s because today is One Day Without Shoes and lali is doing our part to spread awareness that millions of children live without proper footwear, exposing them to injury and disease every day.
lali goes shoeless for One Day Without Shoes

Clearly we’re a fan of the Toms brand, enjoy the four pairs of Toms shoes we own between the two of us, and love the way they’ve merged capitalism with conscience. We were even willing to scurry shoeless through the kitchens at the risk of stern reprimand!

And we’re also super excited to welcome them to the neighborhood. They recently joined our cool-companies-with-warehouse-offices-in-Playa-del-Rey club, and now basically share Chiat’s parking lot (that’s them at the end).
toms and chiat are now neighbors!
PS to our neighbors: if you’re reading this, we’re still anxiously awaiting a tour and chance to go down the twisty slide we can see from outside your window while we’re parking our cars. Also, we should collaborate on some ads sometime, don’t you think?

So thanks, Toms, for giving us a reason to concept shoeless other than our usual love of comfort and bare feet. We hope lots of kids have brighter futures after today.

xo, li

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Portlalia. (two ad girls trying to make it in a city of hipsters)

So lali just got back from a shoot! You’ll find out all the juicy details about who and what and with whom we were shooting later. But for now, just know that we went to the lovely hipster city of Portland to shoot it!

So, for a rainy week in March, lali presents:

Two ad girls trying to make it in a city of hipsters.

Watch this first to get in the mood:

And now… look at these hipsters!

All these clothes in this suitcase I got at a thrift store.

Going through security is so mainstream.

We thought the snacks on the plane were supposed to be vegan.

I hate rain. Oh wait, I hate everything.

This breakfast better be gluten-free.

Especially those donuts.

We only take the director seriously because he has a mustache.

Not one but two bike lights required for our other director.

We only eat food prepared by people as cool as us.

Craft services got the hipster memo.

Food tastes better when served with a mustache.

Yum Nom Nom!
Is the beer I’m having for breakfast from a local brewery?

We went to four years of film school for this?

Is this vintage shirt organic?

I’m only smiling ironically.

I bought this hat with my mom’s credit card.

We only buy things at thrift stores. Bonus if it’s thrift store and Native American.

I left my fixie outside. Boom.

Oh there it is painted on a wall.

Twinsies no exclamation point.

And then we took a trip to visit our old Chiat pal Chris Capretto Wieden + Kennedy and got all hipster up in that joint too.



And finally, we had a music meeting at the Dandy Warhol’s studio, which was like a rock ‘n roll playground.






Ahh, city of hipsters. All in all, Portland was a town with good food, nice people and lots of rain. We can’t wait to go back in a month and give you another Portlalia update!

hipster lali!


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L.A.’s Most Outrageous Office Space! (TBWA\Chiat\Day)

So last week, we finished a Chiat culture video for a new business pitch. We can’t share it, or really talk about it, because just like L.A. Confidential, new business pitches are always off the record, super QT, and very hush hush.

Conveniently, however, Refinery 29 decided at the same time to do an article about the Chiat Day offices. So instead of share our video, we can share their article!

Refinery 29: TBWA Chiat Offices

Here’s how they introduce our office:

Tour L.A.’s Most Outrageous Office Space & Peep Some Killer Style
If Don Draper could hop in a Delorean, he’d park it in front of TBWA\Chiat\Day’s eff-the-establishment office space in Playa Vista. Home to the whiz kids behind America’s most prolific ads (Apple’s splashy neon billboards, the Energizer Bunny, and Taco Bell’s chihuahua), the radically modern building designed by Clive Wilkinson Architects serves as fertile breeding ground for the quick-witted tone of the unconventional agency.

It makes us super proud to work in such a cool place. You can always tell when someone is new to this building – because they can’t stop staring up down and all-around. It also makes ME super proud that my sister interned at Clive Wilkinson Architects while she was still in school. Making that video and seeing this article remind us that industry we work in and the company we work at are just super, super cool. Here’s to being a Chiat Pirate!

And check out a few of the photos from the article:



concept room
(oh hey, we know that room… lots of ideas have come out of the red couches room)
tired & concepting
(look familiar?)

basketball court
(and oh there on the left is Joe! he’s producing something we’re working on right now!)

Ok, back to hanging out in this cool office space!


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Being in production: The reason we all got into advertising

There’s a joke I’ve heard more than once, that you’re supposed to start all your scripts with “open on the French Riviera” or weave some serengeti animals into your plotline. CDs with a few more years under their belts than lali tell tales of the days, pre Sarbanes–Oxlely when ad men would spend ungodly amounts of money on advertising boondoggles, getting flown around the world to snap a picture of a car or whatever.

These days, ad people take budgets and regulations quite seriously (ref: our anti-bribery training) so lali may never experience the true advertising boondoggle. BUT, every once in a while, we do get to take part in a fun production or two.

Last week, I had the privilege of art directing photoshoot in sunny San Francisco. There were only three downsides: I had to be apart from my better half la (insert super sad face), our hotel was almost in the Tenderloin, and my L.A. tendencies annoyed more than one local (oops!) but that wasn’t on purpose. But other than that, the shoot went amazingly well, and I didn’t take for granted — even for one minute — that being in production makes all the hard stuff about our jobs well worth it.

The rundown, in photos…

It wasn’t first class or anything, but A2 is almost as good as it gets on Southwest!

Our hotel was cute, in an eclectic “vintage San Fran meets Nat Geo” sort of way:

The studio was super cool:
photo 4
photo 2

And the commute was lovely:
pretty city

We photographed LOTS of food:
photo 3

ate food at famous places:
photo 8

and drank a variety of cocktails:
Last night in SF

sake sampler

All told, cutie pie account girl Brigette and I vistied over 23 fine establishments in our seven nights there, including the original Bigfoot Lodge, which we know and love from back home:
photo 9

(As a result, Airbornes and coffee were consumed in mass quantities):
photo 6
photo 7

Craft Services was delish:
photo 10

I multitasked many comps and conference calls on set, but took pictures of my glasses when I needed a little break:
These are my glasses

The crew was so amazing/fun, a wrap party ice cream social was in order on the last day!
photo 11

And just before it was time to leave, I managed a quick trip to the record store:
I cleaned up

Also, I saw a cat on a leash:
photo 12

At 16, when I decided I wanted to be an adgirl, I imagined a life in advertising might include (for example) an office with an indoor basketball court and fancy trips to awesome cities. Check! Here’s me as a bona fide adgirl:

xo, li

Note: If you’re my friend on Path or Instagram, you’ve already seen pretty much all these photos :)


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Love was in the air for lali last week

It may already seem like a distant memory for many of you, but last week included a day society calls Valentine’s Day — a day set aside for nothing but love. And let me just tell you, there was nothing but love going around the lali world.

On a professional level, days and days of hard work paid off when we had a successful client meeting early last week. Nothing like a successful client meeting to up the endorphins and, as a result, love for one’s teammates. A sweet and ever-helpful account person on Kraft sent us this little love note:

I know everyone probably told you this, but your concepts yesterday were AMAZING. It is so nice to deal with, every step of the process, a concept that I actually believe in.

And no, the all-caps AMAZING was NOT added by lali for emphasis :)

On a personal/professional level, la and I delivered warm and fuzzy Valentines (complete with hologram sticker) to our coworkers:
Justin Taylor‘s Valentine, as seen on his really sweet Path post:
photo 4

On a personal level, la and her BF Grant had a mellow V-Day and some puppy love:

And I came across this heart on the sidewalk…
photo 1
…on my way to the Venice farmer’s market to buy myself these ranunculus:
photo 3

So when the all-nighters start back up again, the CDs shred our work, the clients kill things mid-production (please, god, no, not again, please) la and I will look back on this post and feel the love!

Hope you all enjoyed as many smiles, hugs, and delicious treats as we did…
photo 2


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Industry Tuesdays (errr Wednesdays): Super Bowl Spots Before the Super Bowl

There will be over 70 spots at the Super Bowl. 111 million viewers. An average of $3.5 million dollars per 30s spot. That’s a lot of money, a lot of eyeballs, and a lot of competition.

So there’s a new trend to get more eyeballs, more exposure & less competition (and more bang for your quite a bit of buck)… Releasing a teaser, or the whole spot, before Game Day.

It started with Volkswagon. Well, it really started with their Darth Vader spot last year, but continued this year with “The Bark Side.”

(I’ve never seen Star Wars, so it didn’t mean that much to me. But it seemed to be pretty popular… 10 million views anyone?)

And then the Dog Strikes Back, a commercial within a commercial responding to a commercial posted on YouTube:

We love this Audi spot. I’m a big fan of vampires, and la and I have concepted our fair share of “vampire” inspired car spots (when you work on cars for long enough, everything is game!). We’re kinda bummed Audi has now killed our dreams of ever having a car spot with vampires!

This super funny ones from our old CDs Chris & Margaret at Saatchi:

Even teasers from Chiat’s own Pepsi (from our buds Armando Samuels and Kristina Krkljus!):

And a teaser from Hulu with “TV Star” Will Arnett:

But our most favorite one started with this – and created a maelstrom of guesses, conjectures and posts:

And then ended up as this:

Congratulations to my old partner Ariel Shukert for making what may be the most popular Super Bowl ad of 2012! Can’t wait to see it on television this Sunday!

Is it worth releasing your Super Bowl spot before the Super Bowl? I think the 6 million views, coverage on the Today Show, the Daily Show and countless blogs would say “yes.” But next year, when everyone releases their spot before the Super Bowl, will it still be worth it? We’ll see…

In the mean time, we’re looking forward to eating chips & dip, chicken wings, drinking beer and hanging out with friends while watching ALL the commercials on Sunday. Oh, and throwing in a little football watching too! Here’s to seeing what social media extensions people use on the spots to make it worth their high price tag…



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lali…back in the day…

here’s a little throwback soundtrack to set the mood for this post:

la and i were killing time at a shoot recently and were inspired to peruse our old myspace accounts (luckily, we still remembered our passwords!)

i came across an image of me answering phones at arnold worldwide, my very first job out of college and a fortuitous first step toward a career in advertising.
li answering the phone
wide-eyed, i watched talented creatives in action and even got thrown a creative bone here and there. and it was during those 10 months i learned that my liberal arts degree sans advertising portfolio wouldn’t get me very far in my quest to become an art director, so i decided to move to LA and change my fate.

when la caught a glimpse of me answering phones, she hilariously pointed out a similar image of her answering phones as a creative assistant at RPA where she, too, got her start and first creative opportunities.
la answering the phone
if i remember the story correctly, la was promoted to jr. copywriter after 1.5 years and was called “the posterchild of integration” by an executive there.

it just goes to show that humble beginnings really CAN lead to your dreams. the great margaret keene used to tell us stories of her days as lee clow’s assistant, doing grunt work by day and creative assignments by night, sleeping on bean bag chairs at the office because she didn’t have a bed at home (or something like that), and saying yes to date invitations just so she wouldn’t have to spend her tiny little salary on dinner. and now she helps to run saatchiLA. you go, girl.

in an effort to not jinx things (if you’ve been reading the blog over the past two years, you know our luck here at chiat can change on a dime) la and i have not gone into detail about the awesome things that have been happening for us lately. as you read this, please knock on wood, but it looks like we will be launching a big, fun campaign this may. we’ve been spending our days vetting talented directors, tweaking this brand’s all-new packaging, writing lines for gigantic billboards, concepting media arts stunts, and helping to develop an app/microsite which currently has 127 pages of wireframes and counting.

sometimes we still answer phones, but not for other people anymore :)

xo and stoked!

PS if you’re interested in knowing more about how to go from NOT being an advertising creative to being an advertising creative, check out this post which boils it down to 9 easy steps!


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