Moving Forward

Screen Shot 2016-07-08 at 10.00.28 AM

 
 

Talking about design and decorating when our country feels as if it’s being ripped apart at the seams feels wrong to me. But I am very aware that for many of you reading, this site is a much-needed distraction from the harsh reality of everything happening in our world today. I don’t want any distraction from the reality I feel is important to see, understand and acknowledge right now, but I recognize that to even have that choice to see or not see things is a privileged one. I know so many of you reading will not be able to simply turn off the news to escape the fear and heartache that is overwhelming in both the black community and law enforcement community this morning. I cannot stop thinking about the stories of Philandro Castile, Alton Sterling and, as of this morning, the five innocent police officers who were murdered by snipers in Dallas. The world feels heavy with sorrow and injustice and confusion and anger.

 

 

On Monday we will resume our regularly scheduled content. But today we’re taking time to mourn all of the innocent lives that have been taken. There is so much listening and healing and action to be done and I want to give us all space to be a part of that in whatever way we can. We’ll go back to home tours and recipes and business advice next week (while never forgetting what we’re feeling right now), but today it just doesn’t feel right to proceed with business as usual when so many people are feeling unsafe, unloved and unprotected.

 

So many of us here have known what it feels like to have spaces, at home and in the world, that do feel safe, healing and protected. Please share that good fortune, happiness and healing energy with everyone who needs your support this week. We will be doing the same. Our hearts are with everyone this week and always. –Grace

 

 

 

 

 

Advertisements

Black Lives Matter

Screen Shot 2016-07-07 at 8.07.10 AM

 
 

I spend most of my days here talking about the concept of HOME and how to make it a more meaningful and welcoming one.

 

 

But I have never once had to worry about my loved ones getting back safely to that home for fear of police brutality. That is a privilege all people should know, but they do not.

 

I cannot sit idly by and watch black people be murdered and then receive absolutely no justice at the hands of a racist and unjust system.

 

This morning I saw Lisa Lucas say that she, “[Went] to sleep heartbroken over one murder, [woke] up heartbroken over another.” That feeling is overwhelming and I cannot talk about “lifestyle” here today when the first part of that word is being ripped away from black people on a daily basis for everyday acts like selling CDs in front of a store, having a missing license plate, wearing a hoodie or calling for help.

 

To all of my white friends: please speak up, stand up and show (through action AND words) your support for black people. Call your officials, call your police chief, speak to your neighbors, put out signs support that send a message, protest, be an ally, do EVERYTHING you can to make it clear that you will not passively stand by while black people are being murdered every day without consequence. My heart breaks for the families of Alton Sterling and Philando Castile it must be said again and again and again: Black Lives Matter, Black Lives Matter, Black Lives Matter.

 

Grace

 

DIY Pink Shibori Cushions

DIY Pink Shibori Cushions on Design*Sponge

 

The shibori trend is still going strong – can you believe this DIY post in our archives about shibori designs is already two years old? Crazy! Despite the popularity of shibori, it always seemed like an intimidating project to attempt. I got it in my head that it would be so messy and difficult to get right, so I never even tried it until making these hot pink shibori cushions recently. Post shibori-dyeing, I can definitely say it isn’t anywhere close to being as difficult or messy as I had thought!

 

DIY Pink Shibori Cushions on Design*Sponge

 

Living in a small apartment can make it tricky to have enough seating when guests come over – we simply don’t have the space for a second sofa or big arm chair. Instead, I’ve decided to stock up on oversized cushions and pillows so that guests can be more comfortable gathering around our coffee table, even if they are sitting on the floor. Also, we have two pet rabbits who love to be petted, so having some extra cushions around helps us get comfy on the floor for their marathon petting sessions.

 

I’m really happy with how these hot pink shibori cushion covers turned out, and just in time for summer! And now that I’ve tried my hand at shibori, I can’t get enough. I’m already planning on doing more pillows in grey or black for the fall and winter. –Kathleen

 

 

 

DIY Pink Shibori Cushions on Design*Sponge

 

Supplies

 

-Plastic sheets/bags (to protect work surface from dye stains)

 
 

-Rubber bands and binder clips

 
 

-Plastic bins/buckets

 
 

-White cotton

 
 

-Scissors

 
 

-Pins

 
 

-Rubber gloves

 
 

-Sewing machine, hand needle, and thread

 
 

-Iron

 
 

-Hot pink dye

 
 

-Salt

 
 

-Measuring tape

 
 

-Pillows

 

 

Step 1: Measure and cut your cotton fabric into squares. My pillows were 20″ and 18″ squares, so I cut four 22″ squares (each pillow needs two squares) so that I could have some wiggle room with the placement.

 

DIY Pink Shibori Cushions on Design*Sponge

 

Step 2: Iron and accordion fold your fabric in equal sections. This post shows great options for folding your fabric.

 

pinkshibori.pillow.step2

 

Step 3: Then accordion fold in triangle shapes down the rectangle as shown, pressing as you go. Again, this post is a great reference for folding techniques – the method shown here is called the “triangle accordion fold.”

 

DIY Pink Shibori Cushions on Design*Sponge

 

Step 4: When complete, you should have four folded pieces just like this.

 

DIY Pink Shibori Cushions on Design*Sponge

 

Step 5: Use rubber bands and binder clips to hold the triangles together and add details to the pattern.

 

DIY Pink Shibori Cushions on Design*Sponge

 

Step 6: Cover your work space with plastic and prepare your dye according to the instructions on the bottle. I poured this Rit liquid dye into hot water with some salt (for a more intense color) and carefully stirred it all together.

 

DIY Pink Shibori Cushions on Design*Sponge

 

Step 7: Start by putting your triangles in a bowl of warm water to get them fully wet. Then put them into the dye bath and let them sit until you’re happy with the color. I waited about 10 minutes for the ones shown and then rinsed them under running water in the sink until they ran clear. I then put them through a quick rinse cycle in the washing machine to be extra sure there was no excess dye and let them air dry.

 

DIY Pink Shibori Cushions on Design*Sponge

 

Step 8: Once dried completely, give the squares a quick iron and layer two squares together. Cut them down to size for your pillows, or use a pencil and ruler to draw your sewing line. Leave one side of the square almost completely open, just sewing the corners. (Note: I chose to make these pillowcases without a zipper/button closure for a few reasons: I like the clean look/feel of no closure, I very rarely wash our removable cushion covers anyways, and our rabbits like to nibble on buttons and zipper tabs. I didn’t want to do an overlapping back either because it would disrupt the shibori pattern, so as you’ll see in the following steps I quickly hand sewed the open edge closed. If in the future I need to wash a stain out of the pillows, I can easily stitch rip the one side open again, wash, and then resew. All that said: definitely feel free to add zippers or buttons on your pillows if you prefer that!)

 

DIY Pink Shibori Cushions on Design*Sponge

 

Step 9: Sew along the line you drew – don’t forget to leave that one side open! It’s also a good idea to backstitch over the corners to give them some extra strength.

 

DIY Pink Shibori Cushions on Design*Sponge

 

Step 10: Trim off any excess seam allowance from the sewn edges and corners. Turn right-side out and put your pillow into the case. Pin the open edge closed so that the fabric on the pillow is nice and taught.

 

DIY Pink Shibori Cushions on Design*Sponge

 

Step 11: Hand sew the open side closed using a ladder stitch. Start from the inside so the thread’s knot is hidden in the pillow and then come up on the very edge of where you’ve pinned. Directly across from where the thread is, go into that edge of the fabric and then come back through about 1/8″ from there. Repeat this, going back and forth making a ladder/railroad tracks look with the thread, as shown below. When the thread is pulled tight, it becomes invisible! If you haven’t done a ladder stitch before, this video shows it in action. When you’ve sewn all the way across the opening, tie off securely and trim off any excess thread.

 

DIY Pink Shibori Cushions on Design*Sponge

 

DIY Pink Shibori Cushions on Design*Sponge

 

DIY Pink Shibori Cushions on Design*Sponge

 

DIY Pink Shibori Cushions on Design*Sponge

 

DIY Pink Shibori Cushions on Design*Sponge

 

15 Fabulous Interior Designers to Follow on Instagram

15 Fabulous Interior Designers to Follow on Instagram

Back in the days before the Internet and social media, we got glimpses of the most beautiful homes by tearing through styled spreads in glossy magazines, never knowing all the hard work that went into their production. In recent years, interior designers have begun using Instagram as a way to showcase not only their perfect finished products, but also the trials and tribulations of the design process, as well as the personal insights that define their unique sensibilities.

 

We’ve been following some designers for a long time now, and continue to be awed by their personal aesthetic evolution. Newer names on the list have discovered ingenious ways of promoting their brands with images of service to their followers. As always, we’ll continue to share our most favorite pretty pictures with you @designsponge. Here are 15 of our favorite designer feeds from which we pull inspiration on Instagram! – @anniewerbler

 

12 Red, White & Blue Interiors For The Fourth

12 Red, White & Blue Interiors For The Fourth

Besides being the symbolic color palette of America’s Independence Day, I think red white and blue are pretty dynamic color companions when it comes to design. While blue is one of my favorite colors to use in interiors, red may be the most energetic hue in the bunch, and is often used for that very reason. I love the way red can instantly bring life to shades of blue, or warm up a white room (like the first space in the slideshow). For these reasons, I’ll definitely be looking for red, white and blue in interiors even after celebrating America’s independence today.

 

There are so many ways to bring this palette into your home in subtle – or loud – ways. Whether you employ large swaths of red, white, or blue by way of paint or artwork or accessorize with small pops of these hues, consider these colors as accents for energized rooms and lively spaces. It’s a palette that can be used well beyond our nation’s flag! –Kevin

 

Home Zine + Best of the Web

homezine4

 
 

No matter how many amazing technological and social media breakthroughs we make, I will always love the idea of a magazine. Whether it’s printed on glossy pages or thick matte stock, there’s something about a collection of ideas and stories – unified around a single theme – that will always be my go-to choice for inspiration. My collection of print magazines spans from old House & Garden issues from the 30s and 40s to all of my favorite issues of Nest and beyond. But I’m always on the hunt for new publications to add to my watch list.

 

 

homezine3

 
 

homezine1

 
 

One of my new favorites is Home Zine, out of Australia. Created by Carla McRae and Tallulah Fontaine, Home Zine is now on its third issue, which focuses on the idea of PEOPLE. The issue features artwork, photography, writing and ideas by artists like Megan James, Kaye Blegvad, Felix Wilson, Ghost Patrol, Leta Sobierajski, Wade Jeffree, Saki Souda and many more. I love the the contrast of thoughtful and serious photography alongside whimsical, candy-colored illustrations, so this issue was a major highlight of my week. If you’re looking for something fun to add to your magazine collection, click here to check out and order the latest issue of Home Zine online. Until Monday, have a wonderful weekend! xo, grace

 

 

bestofweb_71

 
 
 
    • Swing Low: I’ve been thinking about getting a pair of these major earrings to wear on the book tour this fall. Because let’s face it, I’m not much of a clothes horse, but I do love a good chandelier earring.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

bestofds_71 copy_2