Design*Sponge

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DIY Typography Pumpkins by Jordan Ferney of Oh Happy Day

DIY Typography Pumpkin by Jordan Ferney of Oh Happy Day for Design*Sponge
I saw these pretty grey pumpkins at the market and had to bring them home. It is decorative gourd season, after all. We have been experimenting with sign-painting at our house lately so I was inspired to make a typography-inspired pumpkin. I was going for a little more sophisticated look than a classic orange pumpkin. Enjoy! -Jordan Ferney of Oh Happy Day

Click here for the full how-to after the jump!

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DIY Project: Cherry Pumpkins by Brittany Jepsen

DIY Cherry Pumpkins by Brittany Jepsen for Design*Sponge
I’m not the hugest fan of creepy Halloween décor, so when it’s time to think of how I’d like to decorate my own home I tend to go for something floral or color related. Enter, cherry pumpkins. The trick to these cherry pumpkins is finding pumpkins in similar round sizes. I spent a good deal of time at the pumpkin patch evaluating the perfect shape and I love how they turned out. -Brittany Jepsen of The House That Lars Built

Photographs by Laura Sumrak

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Biz Ladies: How to Pull Off a Stress-Free Collaboration

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There’s no shortage of tools and resources to help you pull off a team effort, but successful collaborations require you to use all of your communication skills as well. Jen Dopazo, founder of branding and graphic design studio Candelita, joins us today to share how you can avoid derailing your next collaboration with misunderstandings and miscommunication with five simple, key elements. -Stephanie

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Little Rock, AR City Guide

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Stephanie Maxwell is a near-native Arkansan, having moved to Little Rock with her family when she was just three. After college in Mississippi and a post-grad year in London, Stephanie moved back to her hometown, where she writes and edits for an entertainment weekly, Sync, and her local arts and entertainment blog, Off The Record. Today she gives us a glimpse into this Southern city and all of the dining, shopping and sites it has to offer. -Stephanie

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Mastering My Mistakes with Dana Cowin of Food & Wine


In an online world where all aspects of lifestyle culture can seem to be about achieving perfection, it’s wonderfully refreshing to see someone who is respected and established admit that they still have a few things to learn. Dana Cowin, the editor-in-chief of Food & Wine magazine, set out to write her first cookbook with that very theme in mind: mastering the mistakes she still made while cooking at home. Throughout the course of Mastering My Mistakes In The Kitchen, Dana learns to cook a wide range of recipes, from snacks and breakfast dishes to decadent desserts, and gets tips from some of the country’s top chefs along the way. And while I generally get excited about cookbooks this time of year (I seem to gravitate toward the kitchen when the weather gets colder), I’m especially excited about this one because I got to see parts of it come together in my own home.

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My wife Julia worked with Dana on this cookbook, helping to develop and test all sorts of delicious recipes. And while there were many that stood out to me, there was one that I still can’t stop thinking about: Pear + Brown Sugar Upside-Down Cake. Julia saved me a tiny sliver when she tested the recipe and I immediately requested (politely) that she make us another cake to have at home. So I was thrilled when Dana agreed to not only chat with me for an interview, but to share that recipe here today (both after the jump). Dana also kindly offered to give two lucky D*S readers a free copy of her book! All you need to do to enter the contest is share the story of YOUR biggest cooking mistake and how you learned to overcome it. Leave your story in the comment section below and we’ll pick two winners next week to receive a copy of Mastering My Mistakes In The Kitchen. I’m so excited to hear everyone’s stories (I’ll leave mine below, too). Thanks so much to Dana and everyone at Ecco for sharing this with us today! xo, grace

All photographs by John Kernick, styling by Susie Theodorou

Click through for Dana’s interview and her delicious Pear Cake recipe after the jump!

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A Baton Rouge Home To Love Forever

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Like many things in life, moving into a new home rarely happens at the exact moment you need it to, or with the exact circumstances you would have imagined. For Lindsey Smith, a designer and the founder of Makers Workshop, the hunt for her current home was born out of necessity. A few months pregnant with their son Oliver, Lindsey and her husband Gregory were anxious to find a place where they could lay down their roots—preferably with a big backyard and enough space to house their growing family. What they found was a 1983 house in a charming neighborhood in the heart of Baton Rouge. Hardly Lindsey’s dream home, the new construction house featured a dingy yellow paint job, a beige wall-to-wall carpet, and fixtures that were, to be kind, less than ideal. “I think the biggest challenge we faced was our own impatience,” Lindsey notes of her first few months in the new home. Carpeting needed to be removed, paint colors needed to be changed, and new furniture needed to be purchased. After making a series of whiplash decisions that left them feeling strained and unsatisfied with the final result, Lindsey and her husband made a promise to only purchase items that meant something to them, items that, as Lindsey put it, “we would love forever.” After a few first-timer missteps, the home began to coalesce into the dream home that Lindsey and Gregory had always wanted— a beautiful family retreat lush with treasured objects and new stories to tell. At once modern and timeless (it’s now hard to believe the house’s 1980s construction date), the home provides the perfect backdrop for a growing family. —Max

All photos by Lindsey Smith.

Image above: “Whether it is afternoon book readings with Oliver or friends gathering over drinks, we always find ourselves here in our living room,” Lindsey says. Lindsey and Gregory installed Alder wood in a herringbone pattern on the walls a year ago, something that plays into Lindsey’s interest in texture. An antique rocker, a gift from Gregory during Lindsey’s pregnancy, sits in the corner. “Oliver’s rocking days are gone,” Lindsey continues, “but it now finds a home by the hearth waiting for cold days and cocoa.”

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Image above: Floral prints purchased during Lindsey’s tenure on Anthropologie’s visual team are the only pictures on the living room walls. Because of their unusual size, Lindsey opted for a light, airy look using an IKEA curtain rod rather than splurging on custom frames. “I typically keep fresh cuts from the garden in this room,” Lindsey says. “The vibrant floral colors really bring out the subtle hues in these botanical prints.”

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