Emma Thompson Becomes a Dame Wearing Sneakers

Inspiration, Thumbs Up

This newspiece is from June, but I just found out: Emma Thompson was made a dame in Queen’s Birthday Honours for her services to drama.

I know her mostly through her adaptation of Sense and Sensibility, but I’ve seen her work elsewhere, too, and admire it.

The best thing about the news, though, is that she appeared at the ceremony in sneakers!

The News Herald Jonathan Brady Emma Thompson Dame Ceremony

Jonathan Brady / Press Association via Associated Press.

Women wearing sensible shoes get so much undeserved scorn. It’s utterly ridiculous – why on earth would anyone spend time picking on women’s choice of footwear is beyond me. (Yes, I do know why: patriarchy.)

It’s lovely to see a successful woman not giving a darn and wearing what she pleases!

Found via Yashar Ali on Twitter.

Happy Halloween!

Arts & Crafts, Colors, DIY, Inspiration

I’m impressed – and cheered! – by the DIY rainbow pumpkins by Brittany W. Jepsen at The House that Lars Built:

House that Lars Built Rainbow-Pumpkin-Porch-0102

The House that Lars Built; photo by Jane Merritt.

Isn’t the array simply stunning?!

Happy (Rainbow) Halloween!

P.S. An honorable mention goes to Brittany DeMauro at Costume Supercenter for sharing Avengers pumpkin-carving stencils. Avengers assemble!

Note: I wasn’t paid or perked to mention this; just passing along a good thing.

Quilting-Like Upholstery Tacking on Cabinet Doors

Design & Designers, Inspiration

What a fascinating take on upholstery tacking: the doors of a free-standing dining room cabinet are tacked in an elaborate pattern on what looks like leather.

Desire to Inspire Toronto Interior Design Group Quilted Cabinet Doors

Toronto Interior Design Group, found via Desire to Inspire; cropped.

The leather is clearly set over some sort of puffy filling held down with the tacks. It quite reminds me of quilting.

Found via Desire to Inspire.

Note: I wasn’t paid or perked to mention this; just passing along a good thing.

Geeky Color Combos: Making a Rainbow Effect with Curtains

Colors, Inspiration

I’ve been contemplating updating our living room curtains. While searching for inspiration, I came across this living room from a house for sale ad in Utah:

Desire to Inspire cityhomeCOLLECTIVE Living Rm Rainbow Curtains 1442-circle-way-6

Photo by cityhomeCOLLECTIVE, via Desire to Inspire.

I’m not a fan of the gilt details nor the stuffed raindeer head, but look at the curtains on the big window – they almost make a rainbow! How fabulous! There’s also a set of containers (or perhaps candles?) in rainbow colors on the fireplace mantel. The busy ceiling detail is also too much for me, but I love the deep green rug and navy blue sofa. Very nice!

Found via Desire to Inspire.

Note: I wasn’t paid or perked to mention this; just passing along a good thing.

Bright Colors for an Antidote to November

Books & Mags, Colors, Inspiration

In the northern half of the world, we’re approaching the dark time of the year. For me, November is typically when I start wanting more light and bright things around me. (Candles! Snow!) When that’s not possible, pictures will do. This rainbow-hued glass collection from a home dec magazine fits the bill:

Country Living Jul-Aug 2016 p40

It’s from the Country Living magazine, and the collector, Elsie Larson from Nashville, TN, says this of her Depression glass collection:

“I was inspired by my travels to Palm Springs and specifically stays at the very colorful Parker Hotel, which was designed by one of my heroes, Jonathan Adler. The rainbow effect of their colored glass collection made me smile every morning.”

It’s a beautiful arrangement, and the range of colors is fantastic. (The Parker Hotel colored glass display that Larson mentions can be seen at a Whorange article from February 2014. Personally, I think Larson did a better job than Adler.)

A bonus entry: a color wheel mirror frame in mosaic by Karen Johnston:

Mosaicworksca Blogspot Karen Johnston Colour Wheel Mirror

Karen Johnston at Mosaicworksca.blogspot.com.

The mosaic is so neatly and carefully made. Just gorgeous!

Note: I wasn’t paid or perked to mention this; just passing along a good thing.

Food for Thought: Smartphones and Creativity

Inspiration

On Open Culture, Ayun Halliday writes about smartphones and creativity, extensively quoting cartoonist and educator Lynda Barry.

Flickr Nicolas Nova Smartphone Rituals

Smartphone Rituals by Nicolas Nova on Flickr (CC BY-NC 2.0).

Here’s one of Barry’s thoughts that especially struck me:

“The phone gives us a lot but it takes away three key elements of discovery: loneliness, uncertainty and boredom. Those have always been where creative ideas come from.”

– Lynda Barry

I’m still mulling over the quote, but I seem to be leaning towards disagreeing. People who are inclined to doodle, people-watch, nap, let their thoughts wander, knit, read or whatnot will continue to do so even with smartphones. Not to mention that it’s perfectly possible to be bored with your smartphone and all the access it gives. Boredom, I find, isn’t dependent on having access to x, y or z; it’s more a matter of what doesn’t inspire you at any given moment. Nor are smartphones a cure-all against loneliness or uncertainty.

Smartphones are undoubtedly a tool, and equally unboubtedly they can be a distraction. My tentative hypothesis is that as the newest and perhaps most exciting devices in the history of human tool use, we haven’t collectively learned to balance their benefits and disadvantages yet.

Of course, that doesn’t make it any easier for those struggling to resist the siren song of instant and interminable access.

“Stop saying Yes to shit you hate”

Inspiration, This Is Important, Thumbs Up

A little bit like Fanny Price in Jane Austen’s Mansfield Park, part of my adulthood has definitely involved un-learning the supposed “need” to accept unacceptable things and to learn to say No when needed. Jessica at Femme Fraîche puts it more succinctly:

Jessica Femme Fraiche Instagram Stop Saying Yes

Jessica at Femme Fraîche.

“Stop saying Yes to shit you hate.”

Hear, hear! While taking on projects that are a stretch can help you grow, shit you hate should be on a permanent No list. Don’t you agree?

Note: I wasn’t paid or perked to mention this; just passing along a good thing.

 

 

Online Finds: Useless Worries – Useful Worries

Arts & Crafts, Books & Mags, Inspiration, Thumbs Up

I used my midsummer break to catch up on my Internet reading (among other things). It included a feature on Copenhagen-based artist Johan Deckmann, who paints fictional self-help titles on the covers of books and other items.

This photo with a pair of books, one very thick and the other very thin, especially spoke to me:

Johan Deckmann Instagram Useless Useful Worries

Johan Deckmann on Instagram.

The large book is marked with “Useless worries” while the small says “Useful worries.” Such a spot-on visualisation!

The fact is, I am a worrier, and not likely to change much. However, If I could teach myself to let go of the mountain of useless worries and focus on worrying about the problems worth worrying, that would be a step for the better. 🙂

Note: I wasn’t paid or perked to mention this; just passing along a good thing.

Online Finds: Cute and Awesome Fox Slipper-Socks

Arts & Crafts, Inspiration

These fox slipper-socks are so cute and awesome – complete with a white “tail” tip!

Ravelry Divine Debris Meredith_Fox_Slippers_945x1000_medium2

Amber at Divine Debris; via Ravelry.

Pattern and photos by Amber at Divine Debris; via Ravelry.

Is it finally time for me to dig up my crochet hook? (It’s probably been **cough cough** 25 years or more at this point… Actually, only(!) five or so. 🙂 Anyway.) I have some greyish blue yarn stashed away that might make a great silver fox variant.

Note: I wasn’t paid or perked to mention this; just passing along a good thing.

Quotes: Today’s Young People Are Proud to Be Smart and Curious

Inspiration, Thumbs Up

“What’s remarkable is the way ‘nerd’ is such a badge of honor now. Growing up, I’m sure I wasn’t the only kid who read Spider-Man comics and learned how to do the Vulcan salute, but it wasn’t like it is today. I get the sense that today’s young people are proud to be smart and curious, to design new things, and tackle big problems in unexpected ways. I think America’s a nerdier country than it was when I was a kid—and that’s a good thing!”

– President Barack Obama

Smart and curious people designing new things and tackling big problems is exactly what’s needed at the moment. Proud of my fellow geeks and nerds!

Ransom, Cliff. “President Barack Obama on How to Win the Future: Questions and Answers with Popular Science.” Popular Science