I can’t believe this year is coming to an end. I simply can’t. In a way I still feel like it’s early spring and I have a full year of work ahead of me, but in other ways I can see exactly where the time went. It’s been a year full of ups and downs, challenges and triumphs, and so many life and work lessons that I feel like our little team could write a book about what we’ve learned this year. As much as I want to recap all my favorite things from this year, I think 2013 was a year where I learned that I can’t control, edit and neatly present all the things I wish I could. It’s been a year of incubation in some ways, where we really learned to sit, observe and be quiet until we found exactly the right answer to any problem we faced. So rather than rush and scramble to pull together the perfect year-end recap of our posts this year, I’m going to give our team- and myself- the week off to rest, spend time with loved ones and soak up some much-needed rest. Because we’re going to need it.
Starting next year we’re making some changes around here- in the way we run the site, the way we communicate what inspires us and how we interact with the community we love so much. All of these changes were inspired by little hurdles we had to jump this year and lessons we’ve learned about staying true to ourselves and how we see ourselves in the community. I can’t wait to share all of our new ideas, projects and team members with you. All these new ideas and projects are about finding ways to focus on the best of what we do here- highlighting the things we think are special and different about D*S and deepening the connection we have with our community and ourselves as a team. So to start the new year off right, I wanted to wrap up this year by sharing my own New Year’s Resolutions. These are the things I want to learn personally and professionally to be the best version of myself, the best version of our team and the best versions of Design*Sponge that we can possibly be. From all of us here at D*S, we’re sending you all our love, best wishes and lots of luck for a healthy and happy new year. We’ll see you on January 6th, when we’re back and running full steam towards an exciting 2014. Love, Grace
1. Learn to embrace, not just accept, change.
2. Always write from the heart- never in a rush- and always with a purpose.
3. Be inspired by (and celebrate) the everyday. Real beauty and real life resonates more deeply.
4. Run, don’t walk, in the direction of what scares us most. I want to push and challenge us to make 2014 the best year D*S has ever had.
5. Give back more. No matter the challenge (finance, time, red tape), make our goals happen and make them about helping others, not ourselves.
6. Leave it all on the field. This year, for our 10 year anniversary, I want every goal, idea, hope and wish we have for D*S to have its moment. We will learn not to run away from ideas or posts we think are too difficult, controversial, scary or hard to share. Instead we will find the courage to embrace and stand up for our voices and what we believe in. We want to be a part of a community that shares its challenges and fears as much as its triumphs.
Click through for the full DIY after the jump!
I love New Year’s Eve. I’ll jump on any excuse to get decked out. The classic NYE colors are my absolute favorites — metallics and black. There’s always champagne (double favorite). And there are so many opportunities for party favors (i.e. a DIYer’s dream). If you’re planning on throwing your own party this year, these little confetti-filled fortune pockets make for great favors. Rip them open at midnight, toss them in the air, and be showered with words of inspiration to take you into the new year. If you’re particularly resourceful, you might even be able to recycle some holiday gift wrap in the process. —Mandy Pellegrin
1. Print inspirational quotes or fortunes onto regular printer paper (I used this round-up of great quotes.). Cut into strips, and roll or fold.
2. Cut wrapping paper into triangles. The size is not science, but mine were around 3″ tall and 4″ on their longest side.
3. With right sides facing out, sew together two triangles along two of their three edges. If you’ve never done it before, don’t be worried. Sewing paper is super easy. Just use your sewing machine loaded up with regular thread and set to a fairly long stitch. For a glossier paper, it also helps to lighten the tension on the foot. If you don’t have a sewing machine, glue will work just fine!
4. Load each little pocket with some confetti and a rolled-up fortune.
5. Once full, sew the last of the pockets’ edges shut.