diy project: david stark’s post-it fridge project

[i’m so thrilled to welcome one of my design idols, david stark, to the site today. david is sharing a fun post-it diy project inspired by his fantastic new book, david stark design. welcome, david!]

I am really excited to share our new book DAVID STARK DESIGN with you all, and I look forward to your feedback on it! As an artist, it is both exhilarating and strange to stand back and view the trends and thought processes of your own work. Working on the book forced me to zero in on and articulate a design strategy that is instinctual to me. The ideas that we blow out on a grand scale for big events are really small notions, often made with rather humble materials. Grace inspired me to think about how those ideas could be carried out in a personal way.

Immediately, I thought of an evening we created for New Yorkers for Children last September. The Post-it note was my hero that night – the humble material. We used them for place cards, to build grand walls, and a larger-than-life “wishing tree”. Within the grand walls, Post-its spelled out the evening’s goal.

I often use many of those same event design concepts when entertaining in my own home, albeit on a MUCH smaller scale. My refrigerator becomes a canvas to draw with Post-its. It allows me to change the décor of my home temporarily without any damage or clean-up. I created a couple of different designs to show you, but you can really do anything at all: write a message, create a “holiday tree,” wish someone a happy birthday, or create an abstract pattern. And then . . . when you tire of your image, you can take it apart and start over with a new thought or just re-stack your notes and use them for their intended purpose.

CLICK HERE for the full how-to from David after the jump!

I plan the image by measuring it out old-school. A piece of graph paper is fast and easy, each square representing one Post-it note or a fraction of one Post-It. The face of my refrigerator is 27 inches wide x 48 inches tall. Since traditional Post-it notes are 3 inches square, that allows for an image that is 9 Post-it notes wide x 16 Post-its tall.

Draw your image out on the graph paper first and then post away! You can create images that are comprised of just box shapes, or if you’re more ambitious, you can incorporate a triangular shape by folding a square Post-it from corner to corner. You can see how I’ve done this with the tulip image to create a slight arc or curve within the stem and petals. The sky is the limit on how much you alter the shape of the Post-it. Laying out the shapes and colors on graph paper first allows you to experiment before starting the piece and is the perfect guide for installing your creation.

And every flat surface in the house is fair game. Greet your guests with a message on your front door, surprise them with a greeting on the bathroom mirror or on the underside of the toilet seat cover. Why not?

*click here to pick up a copy of david’s beautiful new book david stark design

  1. Quindome says:

    The Humble Post-It all-grown up… I love this post!

  2. cara says:

    This is great!

  3. Holy, holy crap. I love this and as luck would have it have absolutely no post its in the house. I am fairly certain that slapping bologny on the fridge wouldn’t have the same effect, so I’m off to buy post its. David. My pal. You’re very, very clever.

  4. Oh! AND it’ll cover up all the smudgy marks I can’t get off my stainless fridge!

  5. I want to be David Stark when I grow up. I could never be that creative, but I’m glad someone is!

  6. Such a sweet idea! Looks lovely!

  7. Watch out for those pink post-its! They stain!

  8. Sarah_IAB says:

    Oh wow that is so cool! I tried doing something like this last year for my photography work journal… I failed AND I ruined my page because I tried to restick the edges down haha

    This post has inspired me to try again though, thanks! :)


  9. Lightopia says:

    Now I will never wander around the house aimlessly looking for a notepad

  10. Such an innovative idea! I also like the fact that it can be changeable whenever you get tired of it or it needs to be changed. It’s ever-chaning art! Nice.

  11. I. Love. Post-Its. Great post! What a clever idea!!

  12. ashlina says:

    oh my goodness. that is just way too cute! david is so clever, no?

    1. grace says:

      david is one of the most clever people i know. he’s simply the best :)


  13. This is pretty inspiring. The simple things ;)

  14. Victoria R says:

    Thanks for this post! really, very interesting and pretty, I´ll try it !

  15. Matthew says:

    Makes me want a post it note that is sticky at both the top and the bottom!

  16. I like the different studies – it’s pretty creative and shows the designers versatility.

  17. I love the creativity in changing the look of a normal refrigerator.

  18. Dianna says:

    The post-it art shows how art can be created anywhere with just about anything. It’s all in the eyes of the creator.

  19. Web Traffic says:

    This is absolutely fabulous. I love this a lot.

  20. Little Fish says:

    Post-its as decor is a great idea, but I would have loved to see some of Mr. Stark’s fantastic ideas of using sustainable or household goods as decor as he has done so brilliantly in the past. My foggy memory recalls an event using multi-colored towels to create larger-than-life rainbows… if only there were a way to replicate his genius in my tiny apartment!

    1. grace says:

      little fish

      i actually think this project does just that. like david said, once you’re done with these you can stack them right back together and use them for notes- it doesn’t have to be thrown away. so you can use your everyday home office goods to decorate and then use them again for their intended purpose ;)


  21. Lex Cut says:

    That is so cute!

  22. aamedya says:

    I. Love. Post-Its. Great post! What a clever idea!!

  23. alextenbroeck says:

    we love David Stark! His creativity + kindness knows no bounds! Thank you for celebrating his work.

  24. Safou says:

    Just in time for the Tulip Festival here in Ottawa!

  25. Melanie says:

    Genius!! The best way to bring art in to the home in unexpected ways. Especially if you have kids.

  26. NAGIR says:

    Are the post its used, reused and then recycled?

  27. Fiona says:

    my adoration of david stark inspires this long-time lurker to post a comment. a couple of years ago in glasgow there was a dreamy installation in the city centre over valentines day – I LOVE YOU was written out of post-it notes, all of which were separate hand-written love notes from different people.

    The letters gradually deteriorated as post-its fell into a scottish february, and i regret to this day not having a photo of it…

  28. Ana says:

    love the concept but don’t the post-its fall off. I’ve never found that post-its stick firmly. Some do, but a lot fall off after a short while. Any tips?

  29. Marg says:

    What a great idea.

  30. Jackson says:

    I think this is a terrible idea. In what way is this NOT just a waste of paper/trees? These post-its just get discarded when when the art installation is finished.

    1. grace says:


      this project is intended to use pre-purchased post-its, something a lot of us already have around the house. as david mentioned in the post, you can re-use these post-its when you’re tired of the design. all you need to do is re-stack them and use them as notes, etc after that. if you were buying notepads in the first place, this merely gives them a second life. it doesn’t seek to waste paper, but rather find an addition use for paper you already have sitting around the house.


  31. Muza says:

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  32. Nadia says:

    Wow ! What a wonderful idea !

  33. Condo Blues says:

    This gives me an idea for an accent wall. How durable is it? Wil the Post It’s eventually fall off the wall?

  34. Barbra Deshmond says:

    I personally wouldn’t put this on my fridge because I have spray painted it with chalk board paint (which creates a very handy way of remembering things to do or get). However, I have been trying to think of a way to somehow incorporate this into an office space so that I can keep track of things at work as well…

    Any ideas, anyone?

  35. Shraddha says:

    This is a great idea. I have ordered a stainless steel refrigerator for my mom on her birthday. It is getting delivered this Friday. I think I will create a post-it Tulip on top of it and write the birthday message on it. Thank you so much for this wonderful idea. It is just perfect to make it extra special :)

  36. that’s very cool!

    I linked to your tutorial on my blog – thanks for sharing!

    doro K.

  37. lyrics says:

    I. Love. Post-Its. Great post! What a clever idea!!


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