About a year ago, our friend Ellen Silverman came back from France with a beautiful linen flat sheet that she’d seen displayed in a Paris shop. The salesperson encouraged her to buy a king size sheet and use it as a coverlet that would drape on the floor and become it’s own “dust-ruffle”, hiding whatever lay hidden under the bed. It looked so pretty, and seemed like such a practical idea, that we hatched a plot to photograph it; both being so crazy-busy we still haven’t gotten around to it.
So I was pleased to stumble on a similar image buried in a recent Remodelista house tour. This huge flat-sheet coverlet is made of gauze but linen is lovely, washable, comes in a variety of colors, and doesn’t need to be ironed. Wrinkled is fine, as are ripped edges. We’re wondering what would happen if read more…
It’s lonely being a writer. Sometimes I go for days without seeing another human being except my husband or the barista at the local coffee bar. When I’m deep into a book project, I try to remain focused. My phone calls with friends are, “Can I call you back? I’m in the middle of searching for the right adjective.”
Although some days, I send an email to my friend Rick that goes something like this, “I don’t know how much more of this I can take. My client in Chicago is driving me bonkers. And my feet are burning from stomping out ten other fires. Meet for cocktails at 6? Signed, Miserable in Manhattan.”
Rick responds, “You betcha. I’ve been testing recipes for a diet book since 5 a.m. and writing a book proposal for a supermarket chain. Heading out to buy more groceries for testing. Later.”
At precisely 6 p.m., as I’m pouring some cold vodka into a glass and adding some olives and olive juice, the phone rings. When I pick up, I hear Rick’s voice and the clink of ice cubes going into a glass on the other end of the line. Time for our ritual end-of-the-day phone cocktails: Phone-tails. read more…
We’ve browsed endless catalogues that feature chic, expensive house numbers. We’ve always preferred the ones Isabel Rower devised out of washi tape. Then we saw THIS wonderful graphic house number done in ordinary paint. It could be any size and color(s) you want. The trick would be in finding or making a template that makes for beautiful lines, though freehand could be really beautiful.
via Japanese Trash
Related posts: impromptu tape house numbers
color inspiration: pink, acid yellow + a blue geometry
painted miracle: pink-washed plywood
for stylish d-i-y shipping pallet furniture: paint it black!
rough, hand-painted stripes on walls
transforming cheapo materials with paint
color-painted panels as decorative element
what a painted slab of plywood can do (d-i-y)
We’ve long been fans of Aakash Nihalani‘s geometric tape illusions and wonder how we might apply the idea to our Laboratory. Could we make simple 3-D looking illusions out of tape on our ceiling to make it look higher, or on a wall to make it look like there is another room…? (Much of the Laboratory is crafted of illusions, most spectacularly our mirrored corner window illusion. read more…
We always have our eyes for ideas we could use at home, office, spaces we need to support us and lift our spirits. The right color can do that. Since we’re not being entirely comfortable picking colors on our own, we look to ways other people have done it for inspiration and guidance.
First we came across this deep pink wall…then we got this blast of acid yellow in Morocco. read more…
When we saw this image from Natural Style Outdoor Spaces on Style Files, we immediately thought: shipping pallets would make a perfect base. You’d hardly have to desconstruct them. Just clean them up (stack if desired) and place slip-covered foam cushions on them (here’s a how-to), for chic lounging pallets that would work inside or out.
It’s curious how inspiring shipping pallets have become…We find ourselves building with them in our heads like some sort of mental Tinkertoy…
What are your ideas?
Related posts: the scoop on safe shipping pallets (shipping pallets 101)
ps: some possible dangers of wood shipping pallets
led-illuminated shipping pallet bed
brilliant D-I-Y pallet desks, tables, stairs
D-I-Y: pallet chair (and stool and lamp)
Interior space voyeurs, check out this satisfying tour of furniture designer Hubert Le Gall’s apartment from a 2002 Nest magazine. We especially love the ersatz fireplace, which appears to be made from molded plaster and paint, but would be still-swell just painted, (as the fire was for a mantle with no hearth we posted once). Check out Le Gall’s colorful sunburst bookshelf…
The key is to not turn to
magazines for design
advice. buy buy
It’s all about
the placement of
(just a few) objects.
cheap, found, basic
Cerre gives a little how-to and her favorite sources for creating a setting like this. read more…
What do you get when you put ephemera, a typewriter, and Tyler Knott Gregson together? Amazing, improvisational bits of insight. Gregson’s “Typewriter Series” is written on found bits of paper: a Delta barf bag, a receipt, a page from a book. The idea feels a lot like an adaptation of what Vonnegut did with Hocus Pocus, a novel written entirely on bits of paper and later strung together. Gregson is a hopeless romantic, and that shows in his work, frequently about a lover.
We see old typewriters in secondhand stores all the time for pennies. We love read more…
Lush, fragrant summer strawberries are in their last week or two at farm stands. We bought some home and were inspired to serve them in the giant horn spoon Maria Robledo had given us, for an unexpected presentation. We ate them right off the stems, no powdered sugar necessary. It reminded us that there are all kinds of charming and unexpected vessels you could use for serving summer berries. We imagined an our collection of big odd serving spoons filled with berries and arrayed on the table.
If you decide to remove the hulls before serving the berries or cooking with them, don’t throw them away: they can make a great instant flavoring for balsamic vinegar. read more…
While we were away, we got a very succinct, very cool email from reader Gorden Ammermann, with photos of the wonderful shipping pallet bed he made:
maybe i´ve something for your site. be free to post it: my new diy-pallet-bed
We not only love the white painted bed, but the deliciously rumpled linens in a very simple room as well. You can get the gist of Ammermann’s creation from the other two photos he sent: read more…
One of the people we miss most since we left our old digs is paper artist extraordinaire Matthew Sporzynski, also known as the Couturier de Carboard. (Check out the Pinterest Real Simple compiled of his wonderful paper constructions.) It seems that whenever we ran into him in the elevator or on the street, we’d learn something illuminating. Matthew is endlessly creative and generous and we’ve posted a number of times about him, especially the spontaneous, and always perfectly-timed gifts he’d leave outside our door: stealth gifting. So we were delighted when emailed this picture of his “boat bag workaround”, where he fashioned a leather belt into an adjustable shoulder strap to allow him to comfortable haul heavy gear in his canvas boat bag:
I was rather pleased with a last-minute improvisation I made last week. I was going to a photo shoot at 23rd and 5th and needed to carry a big light box (two hands) and a boat bag full of heavy tools and supplies. I literally thought “what would The Improvised Life do?” read more…
Artist Holton Rower, of 3,000,000+ YouTube hits fame, (not to mention inventor of fabulous leather door pulls) takes all his tools very seriously, including the camera on his phone. It has a lens that is precision, easily damagable glass, just like any other good camera. You wouldn’t put a camera in your bag without its lens cap on, so why do it with your phone? We hadn’t thought of this obvious fact; Holton did. He devised an insta-lens cap: a piece of blue masking tape, which leaves no residue, and be “opened” and “closed” many times before it need replacing.
Simple, efficient, smart!
(And if you don’t like Holton’s rough look, snip the tape cleanly across with a scissors to make a more graphical embellishment.)
Related posts: holton rower’s catalytic art (plywood + 50 gallons of paint + big imagination)
chic, minimalist gorilla tape cabinet door pulls
holton rower-inspired artwork screensaver
our d-i-y leather pulls, reinterpreted
holton rower’s pour paintings: intention + chance, in color
rule for living: apologize every dayx