New to Me: Made of Sundays

Design & Designers

Made of Sundays is a new-to-me design studio focusing on creative wall graphics – decals, posters and stickers – based in Helsinki, Finland.

I have to confess their style isn’t quite to my liking in general; I’ve never been big on polka dots, sprinkles, or triangle or dot patterns, for example. However, this door hug decal is incredibly cute!

Made of Sundays Door Hug Decal Bathroom

Made of Sundays.

 

Ok, I confess that I like the green-to-blue rain drops, too. 🙂

Made of Sundays Gradient Rain Drops Blue Green

Made of Sundays.

 

I guess I’m more of a fan of their style than I thought! 😀

Visit Made of Sundays for more!

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

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.

New to Me: Red Quilt Wallcovering

Colors, Room of Awesome

This photo in the June 2017 edition of Country Living magazine caught my eye:

Country Living June 2017 p27 Quilted Wallcovering

Country Living magazine June 2017, p. 27.

“Quilted wallcovering. Create a warm welcome with this unique spin on an accent wall.”

It seems to be from a bathroom or a half bath with a red wooden dresser repurposed as a vanity, plus a red and dark brown wood-frame mirror set against a coordinating red, black and white quilt. By all appearances, the quilt is permanently attached to the wall.

Wow, what a wonderful look. The mirror on top of the pieced multicolor quilt is too busy for my taste, but I really like how striking the wall is and how well the space is pulled together.

A comparable look would be relatively easy to achieve with paint and a stencil, if you don’t want to use a quilt or are worried about the longevity of textiles as a wallcovering.

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

Colorful, Geometric Paper Jewellery

Arts & Crafts, Design & Designers, DIY

This amazing geometric paper jewellery pings the same receptors in my brain as the geometric quilting patterns I found earlier.

The House That Lars Built Paper Earrings Necklace

The House That Lars Built; photo by Jane Merritt.

They come from a set (tiara, earrings and necklace) inspired by the royal wedding of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry of Britain.

How inventive – kudos! Visit The House That Lars Built for the tutorial.

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.

Discoveries: Geeky Rendering on Blue & White China

Design & Designers, Stunt Double

The Things Could Be Worse mugs by Calamityware are an interesting take on traditional blue and white ceramics:

Calamityware Mugs Things Could Be Worse

Things Could Be Worse mugs by Calamityware.

Robots, pterodactyls, giant animals and hairy humanoids aplenty. LOL! 🙂

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

Discoveries: Shadow Doodles by Vincent Bal

Arts & Crafts, Thumbs Up

Vincent Bal looks at shadows from a different perspective. His drawings turn the shadows of everyday items into something quite different. Below are just a few of my favorites.

An apple core becomes an owl:

Instagram Vincent Bal Apple Core

Vincent Bal at Instagram.

A glass of merlot turns into a UFO abduction scene:

Instagram Vincent Bal UFO

Vincent Bal at Instagram.

And a bulb of garlic bears an uncanny resemblance to E.T.:

Instagram Vincent Bal Garlic ET

Vincent Bal at Instagram.

Visit Bal’s Instagram or Etsy shop for more!

Found via Good Stuff Happened Today.

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

Discoveries: FUJITAMIHO Lace Accessories

Design & Designers, Fabrics & Materials, Stunt Double

Miho Fujita creates delicate jewelry and accessories out of crocheted lace under the label fujitamiho. If that sounds hopelessly old-fashioned, you’re in for a treat: the end result is about as far as you can get.

Fujitamiho Instagram Blues

Fujitamiho on Instragram.

The accessories are made to look like leaves, berries, clusters of mushrooms and other natural elements.

Fujitamiho Instagram Fern Earrings

Fujitamiho on Instragram.

Fujitamiho Instagram Young Bracken

Fujitamiho on Instragram.

The crochet is incredibly tiny and delicate, and the shapes are as marvellous as only a close attention to detail can produce. Some of the jewelry looks almost modern and minimalistic. The pale, natural colors certainly speak to my Nordic sensibilities. 🙂

Found via Colossal. If you read Japanese, you can browse her online shop.

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

From Script to Experiment in Typography and Graphic Design

Design & Designers, Stunt Double, Thumbs Up

Egypt-based graphic designer Mahmoud Tammam released to the world an experimental illustration / typography project to transform words written in the Arabic script to reflect their meaning. Below are some of my favorites.

Rabbit:

Mahmoud Tammam Rabbit

Mahmoud Tammam.

Fox:

Mahmoud Tammam Fox

Mahmoud Tammam.

Coffee:

Mahmoud Tammam Coffee

Mahmoud Tammam.

These are absolutely brilliant! Like so many other seemingly simple designs, I’m sure they took a lot of work.

Access the script project at Behance (part I; part II) or see more of Tammam’s work on Instagram.

Found via Colossal.

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

21 SF/F Authors Project: The Most Memorable Books

Books & Mags

My latest “official” reading project is over. It took longer than expected, but that’s ok – reading is first and foremost a pleasure for me, not a race.

There were several books that I liked a lot, and, as I hoped, I discovered many authors that I’ve already added to my “read more of” list (Hopkinson, Mohanraj, Shawl, Okorafor, Walton and de Bodard, for example).

Below are my “best of” picks from the project – the books that have stayed with me most insistently.

The Last Man by Mary Shelley (1826; full writeup here)

21 Authors The Last Man

Despite some problems and datedness (extreeeeemely slow beginning; inclusion of super-long monologues with pedantic-sounding language to modern readers) the end-of-days tension and horror were created effectively and without viscera.

Left Hand of Darkness by Ursula LeGuin (1969; full writeup here)

21 Authors Left Hand of Darkness

LeGuin just rocks so much.

Falling Free by Lois McMaster Bujold (1988, full writeup here)

21 Authors Falling Free

My introduction to the quaddies in her Vorkosigan universe.

Warchild by Karin Lowachee (2002; full writeup here)

21 Authors Warchild

Emotionally charged story with excellent pacing and reveal. Like The Last Man, also without graphic violence, yet with palpable tension.

P.S. Find all posts in the project with the 21 authors tag.