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Aimee Wilder’s Bungalow Wallpaper Collection

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Over the past several months, we’ve witnessed what appears to be a huge shift in terms of decorative motifs in the design community. Many designers, possibly weary of the abstract and Western-centric motifs that have dominated imagery and ornament in design for the past several years, are instead turning their heads to a different source of inspiration: the tropics. Tropical colors, fruits, and plants have become all the rage, motifs that speak to a warmer, more earnestly jubilant sensibility. Aimee Wilder‘s stunning new Bungalow collection of wallpapers, inspired by a recent trip to Indonesia, expounds upon this aesthetic shift beautifully; the prints are lush with dazzling color and brilliantly, unabashedly joyful in their design. We can’t get enough! Check out more photos of Aimee’s wonderful collection, plus her design notes after the jump! —Max

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Before & After: A Boring Garage Becomes A Brilliant Dining Room

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There’s something exciting about garages—those tiny limbo-like appendages that store cars, bikes, tools, and piles of retired crap—something that seems to imply possibility. Indeed, these spaces offer more than just storage options—they are (with a little sprucing up, of course) a refuge, a second living room, a creative launchpad, a band-practice studio. For Stacia and Phil Samartan, the garage at their Long Beach, California home would serve as a formal dining room. With the help of interior designer Susie Ho, the couple’s garage—a space that could have easily been drab and uninspired—was transformed into a stunning showpiece; a space that stands out while fitting in to the space’s architecture and the locale’s aesthetic. Check out all of the photos, plus Susie’s design notes after the jump! —Max Read More

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10 Second Studio Tour: Jewels of New York

We’ve been über fans of Diana Yen’s multidisciplinary creative studio, Jewels of New York, since they burst onto the scene in 2009. With a focus on the art of food and its many facets, the Jewels of New York is renowned for its stunning food styling, delicious recipes, and timeless-yet-modern take on American home cooking. With a fabulous new cookbook hot off the press, we’re thrilled that Diana was able to squeeze us in for a little peek at her studio. Although tiny and sparely ornamented—a mere storefront in Manhattan’s Lower East Side—the space is filled with beautiful objects, creative energy, and—of course—amazing food. And did we mention the rabbit? Check out our 10-Second-Tour above or all of the photos from our visit after the jump! Max

P.S. The Jewels of New York are giving away copies of their new cookbook—check out their website for more details (and more bunny photos!). Read More

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A Day In The Life of Dana Tanamachi-Williams

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When I first heard about Dana Tanamachi-Williams, she burst onto the scene with some of the most beautiful chalkboard art and lettering I’d ever seen. Her work quickly became a favorite of brands and publications like The Ace Hotel, Tommy Hilfiger, West Elm, O Magazine and Time Magazine and last year she designed a line of products for Target. I’ve been inspired by not just her work and process, but her business vision as well. Dana has grown and expanded her business to include all manners of design and lettering and this fall she’ll release her first book, DIY Type (50+ Typographic Stencils for Decorating, Crafting, and Gifting), too! I’m always inspired by someone who has such a clear vision and tackles their work life with such creativity and excitement. So today I’m thrilled to share behind-the-scenes look at a day in the life of Dana, which includes a healthy does of stripes (the ‘official wardrobe’ of Tanamachi Studio) and watercolor drawings- two things I can never get enough of. Thanks so much to Dana for sharing her day with us. xo, grace

Click through for the full post after the jump!

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Dream Trip: Morocco

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I satisfy my own personal wanderlust by staring at images from Harper Poe’s Instagram feed, which is filled with photos from her adventures in Guatemala, Peru, Niger and of course, Morocco. Harper didn’t grow up traveling, but while in college she spent a semester abroad in Spain and realized that she wanted to connect with people all over the world. That was the moment the travel bug bit. After three years of not leaving the country, she took a trip to Chile and realized that she had to incorporate travel into her work life. Inspired by the indigenous materials in Chile, Harper came home, put her head down and got to work creating Proud Mary, a company that combines a modern design aesthetic with traditional means of production. Harper started in Guatemala and has expanded to Mali, West Africa, Guatemala, Morocco, Peru, and Niger. She usually travels alone but then has a team of people she works with in each country so that she balances time alone with being social and working. Here’s a little peek from her recent trip to Morocco.    -Amy

(P.S. To see more of what Harper finds on her adventures, check out our tour of her Charleston home) Read More

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Printable Freebie: Watercolor Luggage Tags

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Summer travel season is in full swing and although getting out of the city and stretching your proverbial wings is great and all, the act of actually getting there can be a true pain in the neck—long lines, cramped seats, the TSA probing wayyyy further than necessary…. We here at Design*Sponge can’t prevent flight delays, crying babies in the fifteenth row, or misplaced luggage, but we can definitely help you (and your luggage) look stylish through it all! Print out these snazzy, colorful little bad boys and your luggage will look pretty and be clearly marked. Win-win! Happy and safe travels! —Max

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