Graphic design is more than just a pretty typeface. In the hands of someone with the right skills, the personality of a couple, a bar or bat mitzvah, or a company can be infused into a design, so you know who they are at a glance. That’s Hadassah Bixon’s goal when she starts working with a new client. She finds out who they are and what they like so the graphics she creates become a true visual representation.
Bixon’s designs take a simcha from standard to next level. A custom design for your invitations, and anything you have printed, will give your event a unique look and feel. Once Bixon makes the graphics, they’re yours to put on everything that you want personalized.
Making a wedding? Bixon can professionally design a monogram for the invitations and all the formal printed pieces including the processional cards, place cards and benchers. Are you planning a bar or bat mitzvah? Your son or daughter will be thrilled to see their name and date of the simcha in a catchy design. Add it to take-home swag like hoodies or sweatpants for guests. Bixon follows through with the printer to make sure the size, placement and color of the monogram or logo are correct for the best presentation. A new application you may have seen at a bar or bat mitzvah parties is a vinyl-wrapped dance floor and bar with graphics.
Bixon consults with the client on the colors and themes for the simcha to ensure the graphics blend and enhance all parts of the digital and printed materials. Once she gets to know the client and their preferences, she creates several options. Together, they review the designs and narrow them down to a final choice.
Bixon showed me her process. In the first example, I saw a leaf. But when I looked closer, I saw that it was really a set of Hebrew initials. They were for a couple getting married who loved the outdoors and greenery. Bixon sketched out a few concepts—a leaf, a bird and a tree—and the leaf won. From there she made a computerized image (vector) and then made it in color. The design was used on the invitation and other printed pieces for the wedding.
Most simcha invitations now are sent digitally. While a DIY invitation will get the job done, it won’t look as professional. Bixon will design the invitation and can upload and send it out to your guests. “Making a simcha can be overwhelming for people,” she said. “I try to be not only the designer but an advocate for clients who need help implementing their vision.”
Graphic design today is as much about sophisticated software as printing. Bixon has expertise in both worlds. She is a certified UX/UI designer. UX stands for User Experience and UI is User Interface design. A designer uses both these processes to build out prototypes for websites and mobile apps, and make them more intuitive and easier to navigate. She is a graduate of FIT, the Fashion Institute of Technology, where she majored in graphic design. She is also an accomplished artist.
Bixon’s career had an early jumpstart from the COVID pandemic. She was in
seminary at the time and the school sent students home early. At home in Miami Beach, she learned from her father, Rabbi Donald Bixon of Congregation Beth Israel, that people were struggling. She decided to step out of her natural inclination to be private about her artistic ability, and paint portraits to earn money to donate to the Miami Beach Food Co-op. She did fun pop-up portraits, and painted portraits of famous rebbeim from photos.
She began her studies at FIT the next year and had the good fortune to work with artist Elizabeth Sutton, who taught and mentored her. Bixon worked on collaborations for Sutton’s paintings, rug collections and backpacks, which gave her the confidence to start her own graphics business. “I owe it all to her,” said Bixon, warmly expressing her appreciation. Bixon’s plan to take the intense course to get UX/UI certified got put on hold for a year as she married Ami Gerszberg and moved to Teaneck. After completing the course, she rapidly developed a client base through networking, family, friends and word of mouth. She reached out to party planners and credits Rena Soclof for taking a chance with her and sending many clients. Those contacts are multiplying.
Bixon loves the versatility of graphic design. Her clients are a mix of simchas, industry and nonprofit organizations. She works on branding for startups, from creating mood boards to align the organization’s mission with representative visuals, to designing the logo and other necessary assets. She creates presentation decks, brochures, catalogs, flyers and social media campaigns.
Built into everything Bixon does is tzedaka. She donates 10% of all her profits and keeps a separate account so that giving is a structured process. She is a loyal donor to Chai Lifeline; she was very involved in Camp Simcha before she got married. She still contributes to groups in her former Miami community as well as her new Teaneck community, and along with her husband, keeps some tzedaka funds for individuals in need.
Bixon did the graphics for her own wedding but even then, she was thinking about how the simcha could help others. On each table centerpiece there was a QR code for a form to fill out and send to them for singles looking for a shidduch.
The pressing needs of people in Israel will soon get help from Bixon’s newest project: acrylic block prints, with the Misheberach prayer in the shape of Israel. She will send half of the profits from these sales to soldiers and refugees. “We are all soldiers in Hashem’s army,” she said. “This is a spiritual battle. Even though we’re not physically fighting, there’s always a way to fight. Tefillah is a very powerful way.”
Graphic design gets a message across by blending concepts with visuals. Whether you’re making a simcha or starting a business, Hadassah Bixon Designs will develop a look that creates excitement about who you are.