Advice from Cheryl Day from In the Company of Women

Advice from Cheryl Day from In the Company of Women

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Cheryl Day is happiness and love personified. I’ve had the absolute pleasure and honor of having her as a trusted friend for a long time and having her story — and advice — as a part of In the Company of Women means more to me than I can possibly describe. So it seemed only right to close out this week (our pub week!) with her quote from the book. One that reminds me, and everyone reading, to be brave, be strong and be yourself. You are already exactly who and what you need to be to be successful.

Today I’m in Austin, TX (come join us!) for the book tour and as I head into the weekend, my mind is awash in thanks for all of the amazing people that have been a part of this book coming to life. Thank you to all of you reading for supporting this project and for picking up a copy for yourself, your friends, your family and loved ones. This project means more to me than anything else I’ve done in my work life so far and I am so proud and so thrilled to have it out in the world today. If you want to pick up a copy, or join us on the book tour, CLICK HERE to find the links you need to purchase either. xo, grace

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  • Not Simply Sequins: Artist Ebony G. Patterson’s intricate tapestries carry a socially-conscious message more relevant today than ever. Her timely pieces at the last two EXPO Chicago art shows have blown me away.
  • Adaptive Clothing: Kudos to Mindy Scheier of Runway of Dreams and Tommy Hilfiger for launching a line of childrenswear for those differently-abled.
  • An Interior Upgrade: This stunning 150-year-old home in Menorca, Spain holds onto its heritage while still feeling fresh and functional thanks to a load of upgrades.
  • Back to School with Attitude: Our very own Kevin O’Gara’s dorm room makeover proves that getting back to basics doesn’t mean simple or boring.
  • Summer Send-Off Cooking: Chef Danny Seo’s coconut grilled shrimp wrap recipe is bookmarked and ready for when I finally (and reluctantly) say “Adios!” to summer.
  • Menswear Through the Ages: Forever relive LACMA’s fabulous menswear retrospective with Reigning Men: Fashion in Menswear, the new coffee table book capturing all the looks from the recent exhibition.

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In the Kitchen With: Meike Peters’ Pretzel Buns and Obatzda

In the Kitchen With: Meike Peters’ Pretzel Buns and Obatzda

Eat in My Kitchen by Meike Peters book cover

Fall is a big cookbook season, and this year’s new releases are a very strong bunch. We’ve already seen Small Victories by Julia Turshen, Victuals by Ronni Lundy, and this week we welcome a sneak preview from Eat in My Kitchen by Meike Peters. Meike’s food combines the vibrant colors and flavors of her German home as well as her Maltese home-away-from-home. Her Pretzel Buns from the book are perfect examples. They are based on a German recipe, but use Maltese salt. As a bonus recipe, Meike has included a recipe for Obatzda, a Bavarian Camembert spread which you can use to fill these pretzel buns for a savory treat. See another recipe by Meike in our archives here. —Kristina

Xwejni Salt Pans in Gozo by Meike Peters | DesignSponge

Photography by Meike Peters | Portrait of Meike by Luke Engerer
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Inspiring Words from In the Company of Women: Kate Bornstein

Inspiring Words from In the Company of Women: Kate Bornstein

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Kate Bornstein is one of the people I turn to (both in writing and through amazing social media updates) on a regular basis for inspiration, advice and — most importantly — the courage to speak up. Having Kate’s story in our new book, In the Company of Women, means the world to me and I’m thrilled to share Kate’s words here today to start the day on the right foot — with introspection, questions and hopeful curiosity. xo, grace

You can order a copy of In the Company of Women –– and pick up tickets to our book tour events — right here!

11 New Fall TV Shows with Great Sets

11 New Fall TV Shows with Great Sets | Design*Sponge

11 New Fall TV Shows with Great Sets

I can’t help but fixate on movie and television sets. The amount of detail that goes into each set and space to make it feel realistic and lived in — without distracting from the characters — is immense. These sets add to the audience’s experience, engagement and understanding of the plot. It feels like there are so many great new shows coming out, and a lot of the snippets we’ve seen so far have beautifully designed environments and settings. Here are the 11 sets we’re most excited for and inspired by coming this fall. –Lauren

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Our Favorite Interiors in Seattle, WA

Best of Seattle Interiors

Our Favorite Interiors in Seattle, WA

In 1999, I moved to Seattle, WA sort of blindly. I had been to visit once, but that one visit really left me wanting to pack up and move there as soon as I got back home — which I did six months later. I didn’t think I’d ever leave, but while the South drew me back home, I still think about how I’d like to move there a few months out of every year. Seattle will always be one of my favorite cities. I love the ability to walk everywhere, all the great restaurants, how the city is surrounded by water and mountains, and within each neighborhood you are left with the feeling like you’re in a small town, complete with cute house after cute house.

It’s no secret that it rains a lot there, but I always felt cozy and creative in that environment. While I was drawn to the rain, I love these 10 Seattle interiors for their ability to feel cozy but also take advantage of the sunlight when it streams in. I also love the use of vintage items and soft tones within the spaces, to reflect the nature all around the city. —Erin

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Inspiring Words from In the Company of Women: Mary Going

Inspiring Words from In the Company of Women: Mary Going

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One of my favorite lessons in life — and work — is that mistakes are always (no matter how hard we try) a part of the game. And if you’re going to follow your passion and try something big and new and exciting, embracing those mistakes and trips in your path are part of the process.

This quotation from Mary Going of Saint Harridan in In the Company of Women really gets at the heart of this business truth, and I’m so happy to share this here today — and her story in the book! xo, grace

You can order a copy of In the Company of Women –– and pick up tickets to our book tour events — right here!

A Pattern-Filled Halloween with Waverly Inspirations

skull

A Pattern-Filled Halloween with Waverly Inspirations

With Halloween right around the corner and a 10-year-old girl, my house is already filled with reminders that the spookiest night of the year is in exactly 25 days. We always have some neighbors and friends over for some fun before we head out for trick-or-treating downtown and, of course, we always have a theme. This year we’re upping our game and creating some seriously stylish DIYs to scatter about our home based on some of our favorite Halloween characters, themes and the patterns they incorporate. Since my daughter and I are big readers, we decided it would be fun to pile up some thrifted scary books for haunted library vibe. We’ll be gifting everyone a book and, as much as I love candy, a good nail-biter of a book — complete with a creepy DIY bookmark — is way better.

These three DIYs are simple, fun and kid-friendly so grab some paint, brushes, ribbon and your favorite seasonal fabric from the Waverly Inspirations collection and let’s get started. Click through to see our mood boards and DIY instructions. P.S. The Waverly Inspirations damask screen prints are so “haunted library!” –Caitlin

Image above: Waverly Inspirations polka dot fabric decoupaged skull DIY // Image below: Waverly Inspirations damask print fabric background + their bright white ribbon DIY bookmark

*This post is brought to you in collaboration with Waverly Inspirations. This project, ideas, and words are from us here at D*S and were created by us,  for you and your family. Thanks for supporting our sponsors that help us create and publish original content three times per day. The Waverly Inspirations collection is available at Walmart.

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A Family Home in Texas Layered with History and Vintage Finds

A Hands-on Family Home in Texas Layered with History and Vintage Finds

A Family Home in Texas Layered with History and Vintage Finds

Just like people, what gives a home its personality is the result of countless attributes and myriad layers of depth. As Aristotle put it best, “the whole is greater than the sum of its parts.”

For textile designer Heather Winn Bowman and Tibaut Bowman, a musician, the search for the right home to welcome the arrival of their daughter, Lola, went on for what felt like an eternity. “We really felt the pressure to get settled somewhere before Lola was born,” Heather explains. “When our realtor showed us this house, we both knew instantly it was where we needed to be.” For the couple, everything about this Austin, TX abode felt right. It was cozy, yet still spacious enough to allow for them both to work from home, raise their daughter, and offer their dogs, Oliver and Amelie, and Kibi the cat space to roam free.

Built over the span of three time periods, the home is layered with history, charm, and eclecticism. “The front of the house was built in 1936, the middle sometime in the 1970s, and our bedroom in the mid 2000s,” Heather begins. “There are still original details in the front of the house, and it gradually gets more modern as you walk back, but it flows together so well you hardly notice.” Between the creaky slanted floors and doors that don’t close all the way, to the modern conveniences of the kitchen and bathroom — and the fact that it’s located just blocks away from family, friends, great hiking spots, and the lake — it was the whole package that sold them on this 2,200-square-foot home.

Over the two years since they moved in, the couple has created a harmonious, functional, and toddler-friendly space that pays homage to their earthy, vintage design aesthetic. Some of the keys to maintaining this effort has been storage solutions paired with smart furniture and decor choices. “We have baskets all over the house for Lola’s toys,” Heather says, “and vintage rugs with darker colors and lots of texture are great, soft spaces for her to play.” As someone who works from home, Heather’s studio not only lends itself well to a makeshift play space for Lola on busy days, but acts as a design shop for their own home as well. “I use our furniture to photograph new pillows I weave or sew from vintage textiles for my shop updates, so I’m constantly rotating them out,” she states. “This allows me to make subtle changes to the room on a regular basis.” Of course, while the studio works for Heather now, she dreams of one day building a detached studio space in the backyard and turning her existing studio into a dedicated playroom for Lola — or eventually, a second bedroom if the couple decides to expand their family further. But as for the rooms they have renovated, the couple tackled their kitchen just before Lola’s arrival, and they just completed work on their master bedroom and bathroom. So for now, they’re settled, satisfied and happy. “There was a big push to get everything in order before Lola was born,” Heather shares. “I feel like we just recently got fully settled into our home!”

Improvements aside, for these native Texans, it’s the life, laughs, and love inside of their home that make it perfect. –Sabrina

Photography by Molly Winters

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Inspiring Words from In the Company of Women: Sheila Bridges

Inspiring Words from In the Company of Women: Sheila Bridges

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Now that In the Company of Women is officially in stores, I wanted to share another inspiring quotation from one of the women in the book, design legend Sheila Bridges. I have looked up to Sheila for years and getting to have her advice, widsom and personal story in this book means so much to me. xo, grace

You can order a copy of In the Company of Women –– and pick up tickets to our book tour events — right here!

6 Super Cute Carry-On Luggage Options

Bric's Luggage Bellagio Ultra-Light 21 Inch Carry On Spinner Trunk (What a name) is pricey  at $375, but it's definitely the cutest carry-on sized bag I've found on the market. It looks like a classic fabric trunk, but it's actually leather, so it's much more resistant to scuffs and stains.

6 Super Cute Carry-On Luggage Options

Back in 2011 when I went across the country for our 30+ city book tour, I went through a few pieces of luggage, unexpectedly. The first bag had handles that detached, the second bag got flagged so often for looking like it wasn’t carry-on size (even though it was), and the third ended up looking better than it worked (hint: thin canvas casing gets dirty and rips really quickly). So for this year’s tour I’m not messing around. I’m making sure I have a bag I can easily carry — even while running — between flights or trains. I want it to look good, too, but it’s got to work well above all else.

So after testing and research, these are the 6 awesome carry-on bags I’ve narrowed down for my final search. Hopefully they’ll come in handy if you need to pick something new for fall or holiday travel this year, too! xo, grace

*These are all bags with wheels and handles. I’ve given up on shoulder bags. I just end up running between gates and getting a huge indentation in my shoulder and a sore arm.

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A Jewelry Designer’s Serene Home in Salt Lake City

Tour the home of Annabelle Rey of Magpie & Rye on Design*Sponge.

A Jewelry Designer’s Serene Home in Salt Lake City

Plans change when you fall in love, especially when it’s with a new city. A vacation turns into a temporary living arrangement, which then turns into something a little more permanent. For Chris and Annabelle Rey, their love for skiing and the outdoors took them from California’s Bay Area to Salt Lake City, UT.

Chris is a project coordinator for a design firm and Annabelle is a jewelry designer and owner of Magpie and Rye – a curated online and brick-and-mortar boutique. They decided to temporarily stick around in Utah for a while, but in just a few months of enjoying their new city, the couple fell completely in love. “Life here is slower and easier, and we were ready for the change of pace,” Annabelle says. They quickly began looking for a home to settle down in permanently.

After seeing a home listing online, Annabelle drove 10 hours straight from California to Utah to see it in person that same evening. “It had everything we wanted – the yard, the location, the layout, the charm – but it needed a lot of love,” Annabelle shares. “This place was a project!”

Over the next few months, the couple spent every free minute working on their place, meeting with plumbers, electricians, etc. ”It was a great bonding experience with the house. As we peeled away layers of paint and wallpaper, the story of our home revealed itself.” Annabelle and Chris were able to keep the charm of their home from 1910 with a soft color palette and a mixture of minimalism with a curated and elegant sensibility. –Tawnee

Photography by Annabelle Rey

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Inspiring Words from In the Company of Women: Janet Mock

Inspiring Words from In the Company of Women: Janet Mock

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In the Company of Women is in stores everywhere today (!!!) and all week I’m sharing inspiring quotations from the women in its pages, illustrated by Libby VanderPloeg. Today’s quotation comes from a personal hero of mine, author, advocate and TV host, Janet Mock. I hope these words will lift you up the way they did for me. xo, grace

You can order a copy of In the Company of Women –– and pick up tickets to our book tour events — right here!

In The Company of Women is OUT!!!

In The Company of Women is OUT!!!

In my 12 years of blogging, I have never, ever, been as proud of a project as I am of our new book, In the Company of Women. And….it’s officially out and in stores across the globe today!

This book, and all of the women in it, represent the issues, people and beliefs that I hold most dear in my life, both personally and professionally. Their incredible talent, confidence, honest, compassion and dedication to pursuing their dreams has completely changed the way I view my life and our work here at Design*Sponge — and I hope it will do the same for you.

Here’s why In the Company of Women is different from other business/creative inspiration books on the market: because it highlights and celebrates the full depth and breadth of our creative community. It tells the stories of women from the ages of 19 to 78. It tells the stories of women of color, LGBTQ women and differently-abled women. It celebrates women who are working 2 or 3 jobs while pursuing their creative passions at the same time. It shares the stories of women who are just starting and pursuing their passions after first and second careers and motherhood. And it celebrates and highlights the very diverse methods and paths that people have employed and forged to achieve success in life and business.

The book looks at over 100 women who are currently running their own creative businesses or practices, from rock stars and artists to mother-daughter fashion houses and teen publishing titans. Each woman was photographed in their workspace alongside an interview, in their own words, that focuses on honesty, transparency, learning from mistakes and wisdom they’ve each learned about life and business so far.

You don’t have to be a business-owner to learn something from this book. You don’t have to be a woman. But if you are one, or both, of those things, this book — and these amazing women — are not to be missed. I came away with a greater understanding of what is truly important to me, in life and work, and promise you will feel the same way when you close the last page.

Whether you’re buying this for yourself, your mother, your daughter, your friend, a colleague, a recent graduate or just someone who you feel could use some inspiration, In the Company of Women is a book I truly believe will be indispensable for years to come. My goal was for any women (or young girl) reading anywhere to see themselves reflected in these pages and to come away knowing just how many amazing and diverse options there are for them in life and work.

If you’d like to pick up a copy or join us on our book tour (which starts tomorrow in NYC!), CLICK HERE to find links to purchase the book in a local bookstore, online or from international sellers. You’ll also find links to join us at our 12 book tour stops across the US. I cannot wait to celebrate in person, so come join us and I guarantee you’ll come away inspired, motivated and ready to pursue your hopes and dreams. Thank you to everyone who helped make this book possible. It truly took a village to bring this dream to life. xo, grace

Inspiring Words from In the Company of Women: Bethany Yellowtail

Inspiring Words from In the Company of Women: Bethany Yellowtail

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Tomorrow the book of my dreams, In the Company of Women, is in stores everywhere and the thing I’m most excited about is getting the chance to share some incredible advice and wisdom from an amazing group of women.

All week I’ll be sharing little snippets of the book (which you can order here) a online in the form of inspiring quotations from women in its pages, illustrated by Libby VanderPloeg. If you need a daily pick me up, or just a little smile, I hope these wise women’s words will help you start (or end) your day on the right foot. Today’s quotation sums up the mission of this book and comes from the amazing Bethany Yellowtail of B.Yellowtailxo, grace

You can order a copy of In the Company of Women– and pick up tickets to our book tour events- right here!

Our Favorite Homes That Mix Patterns Together in One Space

Best Mix of Patterns In One Space

Our Favorite Homes That Mix Patterns Together in One Space

When thinking about mixing patterns in your home, the word “clash” can come to mind. Like many, you are left wondering, “will it look good? Will it flow and feel intentional?” I was first introduced to mixing patterns in my grandparents’ home. I was about four years old and the room that my brother slept in had plaid wallpaper with a different plaid blanket on the foot of the bed. That look has stuck with me all these years later. I don’t know how or why, but the two plaids worked perfectly together. When my grandparents moved to a new home, when I was around seven, they upped their pattern mix with beautiful blue, mustard yellow and green curtains, hanging behind a set of chairs upholstered with an Asian motif. Again, it just worked. These examples left me dreaming of one day hand-painting a room plaid and decorating the space with a different plaid pattern wingback chair. Or a mix of florals and gingham. Or stripes and florals… I could think in patterns all day long.

I know this design concept can be sort of intimidating — and not everyone thinks they can pull it off — so I’ve rounded up a mix of ideas to use as a jumping-off point, to get you on your way to living with a mix of patterns. —Erin

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