Some books are just plain terrible, am I right? Which isn’t to say they didn’t get read or weren’t special to someone, but the people who cared about them once upon a time somehow got them onto your shelves and you (like many readers) just can’t bring yourself to throw away a book. You could just let them continue to sit unread on your shelf or you could do something with them. Something that involves cutting them up or drawing on them, but isn’t it better to turn an unloved book into something loved than to let it fade away into obscurity?
Here are some ideas that I am finding particularly inspiring:
DRAW, PAINT, OR PRINT ON THE PAGES: How sweet is this print from Brambleberry Lane? Pages from a vintage dictionary become the canvas for an old school image of a copper politely suggesting that a perp stop in the name of the law. Buy one for $7.50 or give DIY drawing, painting, or printing a try.
Turning a book on your bookshelf or a CD on your CD rack is fine if you’re planning to put it back within a day or so, but if you’re a slow reader or reading a giant book or the sort of person who wants to listen to the same song or album until it makes you (and everyone around you sick) then you need a solution with a little more style.
For example, these book and CD separators designed by Japanese artist Hiroshi Sasagawa. His Animal Index can be used to mark your place or to divvy up your shelves into distinct sections. It strikes me that the Animal Index is one of those little things that one could DIY without too much trouble, though I know mine wouldn’t look as polished as these.
I’m not really sure how owls became a thing, but here I sit on a couch decorated with owl throw pillows. Maybe I’m getting a little zany in my old age – please look away from my sock monkey kitchen chair pillows – but I can’t help but love animal inspired decor. Once upon a time that would have meant a leopard print chair, but now it’s more likely to mean a framed quilt patch featuring stylized songbirds or a pint glass with an elephant on it.
So how cute is all this?
Owl throw pillows in a living room via Dwell
I wanted to share this cute, simple project from Donation 2 Decor. Cheap or – even better – found picture frames get a makeover and some new contents using spray paint, masonite, some printed words, and sealer.
The instructions are here, along with several other neat projects for the home. If you give a go, be sure to send me an email with your results!
I can’t recommend Build Blog’s analysis of couch cushion architecture highly enough. As something who is looking very much forward to building couch forts with my daughter once she’s old enough to understand that pillows and cushions aren’t just pads upon which to throw oneself as hard as possible, I loved both Part I and Part II of what should really be an ongoing series.
How could you not love a critical analysis of couch forts? Especially when it reads like this: “A clear derivative of the Miesian box, this handsome project is ‘informalized’ with the use of colorful, freeform roof panels.” (i.e., blankets) and “As a side note it’s always disturbing to see the finish details carried out with such haste in the presence of true structural achievement.” (referring to a hastily tossed blanket)?
Am I the only one who can’t quite decide if she’d like her house to look like this?
Or like this?
Black and white… color… black and white… color. I just can’t decide! Right now, my little Cape is colorful. So much so, in fact, that it’s often the thing people notice first and it’s certainly the most commented on characteristic of my home. But not infrequently I find myself thinking how chic it would look if I switched up my interior with a monochromatic palette.
There is a rule in my house that says we cannot buy any soap, no matter how cute and amazing. It’s circumstance, not anything against soap. For whatever reason, at Christmases and birthdays, The Beard and I have been the recipients of an inordinate number of soaps. Black soaps from Spain that my uncle maintained were good for pregnant women. Bear shaped soaps meant for the baby. Olive oil soaps from Greece, eco-friendly soaps with hollowed out centers to decrease waste, and even one clear soap in a bag with a toy goldfish in the middle. And then, you guessed it, I gave soapmaking a try.
And normally, this soap moratorium doesn’t weigh heavily on my mind. In fact, I can honestly say I hadn’t thought of it at all until, that is, I came across Soapylove. Soapylove, created by Debbie Chialtas, began as a hobby and evolved into a line of soaps, a shop and an Etsy shop, a magazine for soapmakers, and a book! But as cool as the Soapylove story is, the Soapylove soaps are even cooler!
How awesome is this room from lakbdesign?
Love their design philosophy:
every child needs a special place at home, a place where they can learn to be alone, can have “away” space from the rest of the family, but children also need comfortable gathering spaces, where they can play board games or video games with friends, or where siblings come together to create a lego village. lakbdesign children’s spaces. easy.fun.perfect.done.
It’s the little details that really make this room for me – the elephant wallpaper… the disco ball in the corner… the zither (which is both pretty and fun).
When I was growing up, money was extra tight and my immediate family had no real eye for design, so my room was what I could make of it, which wasn’t much. Sure, there are those amazing seven year olds who manage to out-decorate the pros, but I was not one of them. That’s part of why I’ve been spending lots of time on my daughter’s room – I want her to have fond, happy memories of her childhood space.
So do like me and DIY it:
Not one, but two blogs I love (Kitchenisms and emmas designblogg) featured this very modern kitchen that calls the Swedish town of Eskilstuna home. How would I describe this space? It’s a bit industrial and very clean, but also a tad countryish, if only because it reminds me somewhat of the kind of working kitchens you find in farm houses. But those bright green chairs certainly cut through the sanitized look, which is a good thing.
Speaking of sanitization, however, is anyone else a little meh when it comes to the floor to ceiling white tiles? I’m sure the warm wood floors help keep the abattoir feeling to a minimum, yet I can’t shake the idea that I’d start seeing myself inside a slaughterhouse (or maybe just a train station restroom) the longer I spent in the confines of this kitchen.
But back to those green chairs! I’d love to recreate that look in my own kitchen, maybe with these lime green chairs from Umbra: