A Love Letter to the People + Things That Inspire Me

by Grace Bonney

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This week’s radio show was inspired by my wife Julia’s high school yearbook page. For her senior year, each student was given a page to say or display whatever they wanted. Julia chose to fill hers with rows and rows of tiny, but neat, handwriting that named all of the people, places and things she wanted to thank. When I first saw that page in person, I was almost brought to tears. There was such a sense of excitement, passion, gratitude and possibility that it made me start to think about all of the people and things that have inspired me most in my life – professionally and personally.

Since this week’s show fell so close to Valentine’s Day, I thought it was a chance to take a moment to pause, reflect and thank all of the people, publications, applications and innovations that have inspired me endlessly over the past few years. From my favorite magazines and apps to strong women, innovative businesses and new business startups, this is my very personal list of daily inspirations. Whether you’re a new business, a seasoned pro or just someone who’s looking for trusted recommendations that are guaranteed to be helpful and inspirational, this show is full of ideas for everyone. It was so nice to take a moment and thank all of the talented people who have inspired not just this business, but the artists we love and celebrate here.

In the spirit of Valentine’s Day, please feel free to leave your own love letter to the people and things that inspire you. I’m sure we would all love to hear of a few new people, places or great ideas. xo, grace

LISTEN: You can download the podcast on iTunes here, or stream it here on Heritage Radio

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  • Happy Valentine’s Day, Turshen-clan! I know I don’t know you; but, I feel like I do, as I continue to follow your digital presence. Hope you spend today being snuggly with your furry kids, and eating things that are delicious.

    A happy V-Day to the rest of the D*S team as well!

  • You, Gracy Bonney, you inspire me. Thank you for all of the hard work to bring us amazing daily inspiration. Happy Valentine’s Day!

  • Grace, you are at the top of my “what inspires me” list. I love the yearbook idea, thank you for sharing that and also for sharing your inspirations with us. I appreciate how generous you are with sources and for creating a community for those of us pursuing a creative life.

    I listen to after the jump on my commute to my day job as a financial controller. While it brightens my morning, it can also be frustrating because you get me all jazzed up to play with paper, photos and check out everything you or your interviewees are sharing. I’ll need to start listening or re-listening on Saturdays so I can take advantage of that creative jumpstart.

    I enjoy Nest and Oh Joy too. Bossypants is one of my favorite books as well (have a total girl crush on Tina Fey and I even look a little loke her). But you turned me on to so many new things here. I adore print and magazines, so I’m definitely checking out the publications you mentioned. Kinfolk is already a favorite and I agree with you on the layout/presentation. I feel like the content is also so comprehensive, I always learn something when I read Kinfolk. I don’t keep many soft publications (very good about editing out after reading) but my Kinfolk issues are keepers. Regional mags (you mentioned a few) are also fantastic and it provides more of an in-depth look to an area. I’ve heard several times this week about the NYC library photos and I’ll definitely look at that as well.

    I have a few to share: the branding and design work of a Hawaii/Pittsburgh graphic design firm always inspires me, Wall to Wall Studios, Inc. Edible Hawaiian Islands (the print version), the blog Food Practice and the photography of Julie Lee always makes me excited about food as nourishment for body and soul. The podcast Design Matters and just about any book the host, Debbie Millman writes. Also the Dieline.com, a site that’s all about packaging design. I also love Australian shelter mags like Real Living and Living Etc. Minimalist/simple living blogs also inspire to be focus more on clean and simple form/function with no clutter.

  • I too really enjoyed this post, and the show. I agree with the commenter above, wholeheartedly… Thank you for not only being inspiring, but sharing so much.

    I had never heard of Inventory, but I can’t wait to learn more about it. At first blush, it reminds me of the woodworking and boat-building magazines my dad used to get when I was a kid in the 70s.

    Also, I really liked hearing about how many of these people inspire with their social media presence. Social media has never come naturally to me…so it was interesting to hear about what a great instagram feed can convey, for instance. So, thank you for that new perspective. It was illuminating.

    My inspiration Valentine would include @ermiepinterest on pinterest. Amazing picks from a different point of view. @justinablakeney instagram feed – bright, beautiful images that bring a smile. Lastly, @imrevolting pinterest…weird wonderful challenging.

  • Hey, I would really appreciate if links to all the people mentioned were anywhere around… It’s kind of tricky sometimes, spelling the names correctely on google.