Online Finds: Desktop Wallpaper for Organizing Tasks

Bits in Spaaace!, Colors, Inspiration

Diane Henkler made and shared this clever organizer wallpaper:

Diane Henkler Computer-Desktop-Background-to-help-you-organize-what-you-place-on-your-computers-desktop-screen

Diane Henkler at In My Own Style.

Being a visual person, I love the idea. It’s simple but helpful for arranging your tasks and finding them at a glance. Love the cheerful colors, too; just the thing to counter grey fall skies. 🙂

The .jpg is available for several screen resolutions either with the default categories (To Do, Files and Misc) or with blank label holders in case you want to use your own. Visit In My Own Style to download.

Thank you for sharing, Diane!

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

When Serendipity Delivers: Saturated Rainbow Hues


Just by happenstance, my recent Internet browsing is full of saturated rainbow hues. (Content note: large, hairy spider at the bottom.)

Rainbow-hued origami street art by French street artist Mademoiselle Maurice, this one from Italy:

Mademoiselle Maurice Italy Fate Festival Glass Sphere

Mademoiselle Maurice, Fate Festival in Italy, photo by Antonio Sena.

Recycled and painted cans as planters by Claire at Pillar Box Blue:

Claire Pillar Box Blue Tin-Can-Planters-GL8

Claire at Pillar Box Blue.

Free printable feather wall art by Linda at Burlap & Blue:

Linda Burlap and Blue feathers-on-brick-768x512

Linda at Burlap & Blue.

Barista Mason Salisbury on Instagram makes me wish I liked coffee (or that someone did this with tea):

Mason Salisbury Instagram Green Blue Latte

Latte by Mason Salisbury on Instagram.

Handwoven kilim wool and sari silk rug from

1800getarug Kilim Wool Sari Silk Rug

A rainbow of eggs by Brittany Wright / Wright Kitchen on Instagram:

Brittany Wright Instagram Rainbow Eggs

Brittany Wright / Wright Kitchen on Instagram.

Gooty sapphire ornamental tree spider by William Foster on Flickr:

Flickr William Foster Gooty Sapphire Ornamental Tree Spider

William Foster on Flickr.

Saturated colors tend to make me happy even if they’re not all personal favorites. It’s always a treat when randomness results in something enjoyable.

What has serendipity delivered for you lately?

Favorite Handmade Xmas Presents from 2014

After Hours, Arts & Crafts, Fabrics & Materials

Happy New Year to each and everyone! I had such a relaxing Christmas and a great break in general. I hope that was also the case for you. It’s good to be back to a fresh start, though, with some fresh snow outdoors. I just love how everything looks so clean and clear and soft after snowfall.

Speaking of soft: Every year, I try to include something handmade in my Christmas presents. Here are some soft projects from 2014 that I most enjoyed making:

2014 Handmade Xmas Presents

Clockwise from top right: three nesting bins in the recipient’s favorite colors; simple gift wrapping with a hunter green envelope, a bunny paper clip and a recycled Christmas card cut down to size; freeform hand-embroidered rosemary sachets, cotton on cotton muslin; two nesting bins out of blue Marimekko poppy print fabric; and eight fabric coasters with felt innards and fringed edges, complete with a small custom storage bin in coordinating colors.

In this case, part of the pleasure came from being able to use for personal gain a fabric bin construction technique I developed for my business.

Any handmade gifts you either made or received that you’d like to share? Please do!

Lucky Little Bin Seam

Arts & Crafts, Fabrics & Materials

This week has dealt me several challenges, some of them not very pleasant. It was therefore a lovely surprise to see this result with a sewing project:

Thank You Present for Customer

I made this little fabric storage bin as a thank you gift to a customer. See how the pattern lines up almost perfectly at the seam? I did not painstakingly calculate the circumference of the bin or the repeats of the chevrons, and line up my starting point accordingly; it happened by chance.

In an interview in The New York Times, Peter Dinklage gives his thoughts on luck:

“I feel really lucky,” he said, then added, “although I hate that word — ‘lucky.’ ” When I asked him why, he mulled it over for a moment, looking away. Then he focused back on me. “It cheapens a lot of hard work,” he said. “Living in Brooklyn in an apartment without any heat and paying for dinner at the bodega with dimes — I don’t think I felt myself lucky back then. Doing plays for 50 bucks and trying to be true to myself as an” — here he put on a faux snooty voice — “artist and turning down commercials where they wanted a leprechaun. Saying I was lucky negates the hard work I put in and spits on that guy who’s freezing his ass off back in Brooklyn. So I won’t say I’m lucky. I’m fortunate enough to find or attract very talented people. For some reason I found them, and they found me.” (Reported by Dan Kois.)

I do see his point. I have been fortunate myself, but this was not one of those moments. It was pure luck. And, just this week, I’m going to take my free, undeserved luck and not feel at all bad. Next week I might consider adding a pinch of guilt. 😉

May your weekend be happy and relaxing!

Serving Suggestion: Green, Lime Green and Yellow

Colors, Moodboards

Mood boards are wonderful tools for collecting inspiration or seeing what an item might look like in a room. For this green, lime green and yellow decorative pillow cover

Throw pillow cover

Pillow Cover in Green, Lime Green and Yellow. Playfullygrownuphome on Etsy.

…I imagined a bedroom with a vibrant accent wall and luscious, chocolate-colored bamboo floor with a sheepskin rug:

Serving Suggestion

Serving Suggestion for a Decorative Pillow Cover.

The accent wall is painted with concentric rectangles, separated with white lines, and a white-framed rectangular mirror rests in the center above the bed. White modern furniture is softened by the bedding, pillows and curtains in yellow and green tones. It’s a grownup version of this boy’s room, if you like:

Contemporary boy's room

Brandon Barre Photography.

Brandon Barre Photography; via

Below is a full source list for my mood board:

For those preferring a little less color, I created a calmer room with just the green on the accent wall:

Serving Suggestion

Serving Suggestion for a Decorative Pillow Cover.

And the source list:

Floor: Morning Star Click Tongling Bamboo at Lumber Liquidators

I’d be happier with the simpler room. Which one would you prefer?

Online Finds: Wallpapers from Vera Bradley

Bits in Spaaace!, Colors, Design & Designers

Vera Bradley has made several downloadable wallpapers available for free. There are three sizes: desktop computer, iPad and mobile phone. There’s a Downloads archive as well for more browsing. I think the Summer Cottage (from summer 2012) is my favorite:

Vera Bradley Summer Cottage iPad Wallpaper

Vera Bradley.

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

Window Shopping for Inspiration…

Colors, Inspiration

…and maybe chairs.

I had a few errands to run today, so I took the opportunity to look around for inspiration while I was out. I like visiting Pier1 in person because of the colorful displays.

Not everything there tickles my fancy, of course. I love pale wood in furniture – birch or ash, for example – but they’re difficult to find in the U.S. if you’re not into modern style. To me, the darker wood colors that Pier1 favors feel heavy and oppressive, so I tend to give the furniture a cursory glance and concentrate on the smaller items.

Here are a few things that drew my eye today:

Inspiration item collage

All items Pier1; collage by Eppu Jensen.

I’ve started taking photos of things I like and consider buying to see if I still like them after a night or two. The trick has saved me from quite a few mispurchases. Right now I’m considering those metal stools (they’re on sale, too).

Any favorite shops or shopping tips you want to share?

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

Serving Suggestion: Turquoise, Green and Lime Green

Colors, Moodboards

Mood boards are wonderful tools for collecting inspiration or seeing what an item might look like in a room. For this turquoise, green and lime green decorative pillow cover

Decorative pillow cover

Pillow Cover in Turquoise, Green and Lime Green. Playfullygrownuphome on Etsy.

…I imagined a white, contemporary living room:

Serving Suggestion

Serving Suggestion for a Decorative Pillow Cover.

I also envision a wall of tall windows and a warm oak floor. The fresh color palette nods towards the tropics; the coral red and yellow perk up the cool shades. Below is a full source list.

What do you think?