Two Tiny Collages
In Depth: Becoming Jane

Inspiration From Apartment Therapy

Apartment Therapy is one of my favorite blogs.  Their motto is, "saving the world, one room at a time."  I read the New York version.  They also have L.A., San Francisco, Chicago, D.C., and Boston versions.  As you might guess from the title of the blog, they share all things home related.  And while I do have dreams of reupholstering antique chairs and refinishing flea market cabinets, mostly I like to look at the pretty pictures for inspiration.  Today, I thought I'd share some inspiring photos from recent Apartment Therapy posts:

Doilies and Thumbtacks:


It's no secret that I'm obsessed with circles.  I love the imperfect feeling of these ones.  I'm imagining a white-on-white quilt or a scrapbook page or even a necklace with an undulating line of imperfect circles and little red dots.

Decorating With Firewood:

Okay, so squint your eyes and ignore the drum set.  I see a cool idea for a painted background.  Circles of different sizes (totally imperfect) on a black background.  Oranges and browns and yellows.

Alcove Beds:

Besides the fact that it looks like the most deliciously cozy place to sleep, I am struck by the combination of textures.  The peeling white woodwork makes me want to pull out some crackle paint.  Wouldn't it be cool to create a project that mixes that hard texture with the cozy colors and velvety feeling of the bedding and curtains?  Hmmmmm.....

DIY Lighting Inspiration:

I definitely want to sew some buttons onto a fabric shade now!  But more than the project itself, I am struck by the contrast in these two lamp shades.  The one on top "feels" more crafty because of the multiple colors and random patterning.  The one on the bottom feels much more designed and less like a craft project because of the high contrast and order. 

It makes me think about how sometimes I'll get an idea and when I finish with the project, it just doesn't look quite as polished and sophisticated as I wanted.  So I toss the idea away.  This is a good reminder that the idea (like buttons on a lampshade) may still be good, but the format may be wrong.  Hmmm...going to have to revisit some old projects with this thought in mind!

Reading at the Table:

Almost all of my art work includes text.  I always love ideas for putting it in unexpected places.  I've been wanting to make my own placements with this cool heat sealable vinyl that I found at The City Quilter.  I was thinking of doing it with some Angelina fibers and fabric sandwiched between the vinyl, and now I'm liking the idea of adding some fun text too!

Colorful Accents:

While I happen to think that decorating with books is a totally anti-intellectual act, this photo is just all sorts of too cool!  And I am reminded by the white couch and the dark bookshelves that the secret to making a collection of bright colors pop and look good is by keeping everything else very simple.  The colorful books are essentially a repeated shape over and over again.  You know, every few months I tend to make a scrapbook page or a quilt or something that has a black background and a rainbow of color.  There's something about it that I really love.

Embroidered Text Messages:

These make me howl with laughter.  I love art that transforms random every day things into something lovely.  One of my favorite quilts ever was one I made based on e-mails from my spam box.  And I love scrapping about silly little things - a new pair of shoes, an adorable comment from my husband - because the little things are the things you forget so quickly.  They disappear.  It's good to memorialize them.

Lime Washed Walls:

What a great color combination!  Yellow and green.  Going to remember that one for later.

A Kitchen With a Ladder:

As soon as I saw this photo, this sketch...

Sketch ...popped into my head!  I imagine stitching a line of patterned paper scraps up the right side of the page.


Well, we're back to text.  Have I mentioned that I love working with text?  The top photo makes me want to break out the letter stickers and create a wave of random letters.  The bottom photo makes me think that a simple title place in the upper left corner of a layout would be a good idea...and maybe cut it from the same color paper as the photo mat (that would be the grey bathtub).  Note how the letters seem to be made from the same material as the bathtub.

Thus ends my quick tour through some inspiration.  From practical to esoteric.  From big ideas to little mental light bulbs going off.  I always find so much inspiration on Apartment Therapy.  Thanks for letting me share a little bit about how my creative brain works!

Thanks for stopping by!