Monday, February 25, 2008

Corner Bookshelf

Corner Bookshelf from"House Tour: South Street Seaport" at Apartment Therapy. Metropolitan Home: March 2008. Downtown apartment of architect Jeffrey Povero and Jeffrey Schneider.

Another bookshelf idea. Custom bookshelves that take advantage of the ceiling height and the corner of the bedroom. Love it!

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Boxed Letter Cushions

Boxed Letter Cushions from The Yvestown Blog. I love all things typographic. We have a silver "B" gracing our mantel as we speak. Perhaps our couch is in need of a "B" pillow.

Super fun for children who are just learning their letters, or even in a preschool/kindergarten classroom. Can't you just imagine getting to cuddle with the "letter of the week"?

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

A2 Envelope Album

A2 envelope booklet from Paper Source. My mom has a tradition of making scrapbooks to celebrate milestones in people's lives. She asks that person's friends and relatives to write a note and send a picture to place in an album. It's always such a surprise to get a note from a friend that you've lost touch from.

This project could be used similarly, with friends gathering notes, photos, and mementos. Or to collect mementos from a single vacation.

Directions from Paper-Source:
"This easy to make book is a handmade and personalized way to organize all of your small odds and ends. Each envelope page can hold something different such as- "to do" lists, stamps, tickets, coupons, and business cards.

step one:
Choose your envelopes. You will need an odd number, anywhere from five to ten. We have used an A2 size here but, almost any size side-opening envelope will work.

step two:
Using a glue stick, adhere the envelopes together by placing adhesive on the inside of the flap of one envelope and using a bone folder, burnish it to the front of the next envelope.
step three:
Fold the pages accordion style, making the pointed flap of the first envelope the cover of your book.
step four:
Add a ribbon closure. Cut a small opening the width of the ribbon on both sides of the last envelope and run the ribbon through.
step five:
Using labels and colored gel pens indicate the contents of each envelope "page". Fill with all your odds and ends, fold up, and tie the ribbon closure to keep everything safely tucked inside."

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Pajamas Party

Christmas Party Tradition from Skip to My Lou. They invite friends over to read Christmas stories. The catch is that everyone has to come in their pajamas.
"There are no fancy clothes or fancy food and kids are definitely invited. At first the guests (especially the adults) might be shy about wearing their pajamas—but we insist. We sit around reading Christmas stories, drinking hot chocolate, sometimes we do a craft(decorating gingerbread houses and making gift tags are a favorite), and we eat a few simple snacks. It is such a special way to spend a cozy and relaxing evening with friends. We enjoy listening to our friends favorite Christmas books and as some of the children have gotten older they enjoy reading the stories also. I can’t say enough about how special the evening is for us. It is a moment in this busy time of year to slow down and remember what the Season is about!"

Here's the copy for the invitation:

"We would like for you to join us for
a Christmas tale
We’ll gather for a story about a
little sleigh bell
We’ll be in our pajamas so that’s
how you should dress
All aboard headed north on the
Polar Express
Your time and date

Please bring your favorite Christmas
story to read!"

Holiday Collage

Holiday Collage from Ali Edwards' blog.
"This week I received a Land of Nod catalog in the mail that had a cool collage of stamped elements in a white frame. I immediately tore it out and began thinking of ways I could create something similar myself using all my holiday supplies (if you have not gathered up all your holiday supplies together into one convenient location, now is the time to do it). I picked up an inexpensive frame with mat at my local all-purpose store (I love that I can get groceries and frames all in one place) and went to work.

Each of the patterned paper squares are 2 inches x 2 inches. Manufacturers include: Chatterbox, My Mind's Eye, Daisy D's, KI Memories, Basic Grey, Creative Imaginations, and Scenic Route.

Additional elements include:

  • KI Memories: chipboard elements
  • 7gypsies: stickers
  • Marah Johnson Decemeber 25th: rub ons
  • Danelle Johnson Art Warehouse: stamps
  • Daisy D's: rub ons
  • My Mind's Eye : tag
  • Memories Complete: "happy holidays"
I ended up with a black frame and a white mat."

Could I do something similar for my Christmas card next year?

Butterfly Punch Collage

Weekend Creative Punch Collage from Ali Edwards' blog. I'm so glad I found this amazing lady's blog. And what a wonderful project to lead me there.
"This collage was created using a Martha Stewart butterfly punch and a variety of different scraps of paper: junk mail, scrapbook paper, pages from old books, etc. My white sheet of background cardstock was cut to 10x8 to fit into the mat of the black frame. I used tiny foam dots as adhesive. There's no real method to choosing which papers to use - I tend to go for a balance between text, lines, dots, etc."

I love this idea as a gift for my mom or for the pastor of my church. Who else wants a repetitive collage.

Monday, February 18, 2008

Picture A Day

Picture-A-Day, a custom heirloom book by GoodStock. I love this company and this business idea. I really wish that I would have thought of it first. I wonder if she needs any additional employees?!?! But this is still a lovely idea, one that I hope to have the resolve to do for my babies someday. Simple graphic design, occasionally a quote, but mainly just 365 photos of a cute baby. With self publishing houses like and, this is something I could put my own spin on.

Personalized Felt Barrettes

Personalized Felt Barrettes from Tiny McSmall. Embroidered stitching on wool. Alternating left and right barrettes. So cute and feminine, yet almost unexpected.

Vintage Game Board Display

Look! Vintage Game Board Display from Apartment Therapy: Ohdeedoh. This is Elliott's room, designed by his mom Erin. I love board games and I love a good collection. Thus, what a fun display in a child's room/nursery. She found the games on Ebay and at various flea markets. Pair with muted colors on walls and textiles, as well as a host of other forgotten, but wonderful children's toys from the past.

Carpet Bulletin Board

Carpet Bulletin Board from Blueprint.
"With a staple gun and some Flor ( carpet squares, you can create a colorful bulletin board.
  1. Measure the area you want to convert, and order the foot-square tiles to fit.
  2. Use a level to draw a straight line on the wall along the bottom of your bulletin board.
  3. Place the lower center tile, making sure the bottom lines up with your line; staple a brad through each corner, about an inch down and in.
  4. Hang the other tiles, making certain they're level and snug."
My textile/fiber engineer husband will surely love this excuse for displaying carpet squares in our home.

Clutter Cups

Tin Can Organizer from Idea by Jennifer and Kitty O'Neal."Tin cans are tiny containers just waiting to be put to organizational use. To recycle them into versatile storage, all you need is your imagination and a clean-edge can opener.
Corral the clutter in the kids’ room with magnetic tin cans. Hot glue heavy-duty magnets to ten soup cans and stick them to a steel cookie sheet. Hang it within kids’ reach using a plate hanger. Use the cups to hold crayons, chalk, markers and even Legos. Label the cans for easy clean up."

Overall Aprons

Overall Aprons from Beansoup. So cute! And perfect for a boy! Maybe my nephew?!?!

Graphic Mural

From the Domino Decorating Contest, entry by Dyan from Philadelphia. It is her daughter's bedroom. The green design that fills the bottom half of the walls is so graphically pleasing. I can imagine a child feeling like she was in her own little world, with characters and places to visit all along the perimeter of the room.

Nice Wood Paneling

I've always thought that nothing could be worse than wood paneling. Until I saw this...

And this...
From "Look! Nice Wood Paneling" posted at Apartment Therapy: San Francisco. Photos from Australian Vogue Living last summer. After seeing this from Gwyn Hanssen Pigott's home, I just had to change my mind. I love these rooms. I love the texture of the walls. Perfect for a kitchen or cheery sunroom. I'm not sure I'd want it everywhere, but it sure beats the stuffiness of traditional wood paneled rooms.

Oijoy Living Room

From Sneak Peek: Oijoy photo on DesignSponge. This is from the Chicago home of Janet Moran and her husband John. The awesome cherry media cabinet was built by John. But I love the low height and those sliding doors. The circular mirror is a simple, yet perfect contrast for the high-tech flatscreen tv. Hopefully we'll be getting a new TV soon. I wonder if we'll be able to keep the "entertainment center" so free of clutter!!

Delux My Colour

Delux My Colour color scheming tool for interiors. I'm sure there are other similar resources out there on the web, but this one is intriguing because you can change the colors of all of the elements in the room.

Friday, February 15, 2008

Wall-mounted Sideboard

"New Shelving," by kinalaya on Wall-mounted sideboard made from 3 IKEA Lack shelves. Looks really good against a dark colored wall. Might be nice as a buffet in a dining room or as a bar in a breakfast room. It's a great way of re-looking at a traditional piece. By mounting it lower than expected, it serves a totally different function.

Bookcase Wall

From "Tricks for Decorating Small Spaces," for Domino Magazine: June 2006.
I love books, and I love how they look on shelves, but too many books look cluttered. This wall reminds me of the built-in bookcases in my first apartment that I used as a headboard. If you use books in one location across a whole wall, it becomes a sort of wallpaper.

Art Project Storage

Art-project Storage from Martha Stewart Kids. Label mailing tubes, available at office-supply stores, by semester or year, and fill with rolled-up stacks of artwork. Can store vertically in a bucket or horizontally in a wide box. Such a simple solution.

A, B, C, D

Love the idea of wooden letters or numbers in a nursery. Decoupage them with paper or fabric.

Wooden Play Gym

Wooden Play Gym from ABC Carpet & Home, found at Oh Happy Day. A wonderful alternative to Chinese-manufactured plastic crap. Think Rob can perfect his woodworking skills by then?!?!

LittleMama's Nursery

LittleMama's room from Mama Said Shop. Well, for one, the architecture of the room they have to work with is amazing. Arched windows, arched doors, high tray ceilings, beautiful wood floors. But look at that color. That turquoise/white combination is just dainty enough, but not gaggingly girly. The straw blinds bring the natural side of things, and the umbrella hanging from the ceiling--that's just plain fun.

teal blue/green paint = Dunn Edwards Treetop (DE 5710)
sage green paint = Dunn Edwards Light Pine (DE 5535)
bookcase & side table = Shabby Chic collection from Target

Rowen's Urban Jungle Nursery

From Apartment Therapy: OhDeeDoh's First Annual Nursery Colors Contest. This is #15-Rowen's Urban Jungle. That lime green and brown combination is to die for. The simplicity of the graphics create a modern, yet baby-friendly space, that even a young boy could play in. Love the contrast of the bold green stripe on the white wall. Definitely not the run-of-the-mill nursery that you see at the store.

'Dew Drop' by Amy Butler in green and brown
Green paint / "Hidden Meadow" 410B-5, Behr Interior Flat
Brown paint / "Breakfast Blend" 280F-7, Behr Interior Flat
Fairchild Rug from the Mystique Rug Collection

What Inspires Me

After poring over Design for Mankind's Inspiration e-zine, I wanted to create a list of things that inspire me. This is a work in progress, but here's what I've got so far.
  • Finding patterns in the world
  • Photos of family and friends
  • An unexpected color combination that somehow works
  • A seamless repeating graphic pattern
  • Scraps of paper
  • Old correspondence
  • Hearing the histories of people
  • Handwritten notes
  • Dreaming of the future
  • Uncluttered shelves