Archive | December, 2010

Gifts to give your favorite Designphile

15 Dec

While I love the act of gift-giving, I hate the process behind it. Trying to figure out what someone will love and can be purchased in a timely manner, all in the right price range, is an arduous task. However, if you have a little design nerd of your own in your life, or just someone whose place needs a little t.l.c, I have some helpful gift ideas to help you out. I promise this is not just an elaborate way to hint about what I’d like to find under my Christmas tree this year, but if any Designphile fans happen to feel extra giving this year…

Why not give the gift of interesting walls this season?

These interesting and adorable wall decals are from They’re perfect for anyone and everyone,  especially apartment renters or dorm residents. They are non-permanent and easy versions of a cool mural. Decals are $20 and up and come in a huge variety of animals, plants, abstract designs and patterns. The owl scene above is $65. And best of all? Anytime the recipient sees these nifty designs on their wall, they’ll think of how perfect a gift you gave.


Let it Snow

13 Dec

While thinking of other ways to inexpensively decorate my apartment for the holidays, I remembered a craft project that I had done years ago. It was first featured in Martha Stewart Living (yes I did read this fine publication in high school). While it adds a glamorous look to your place, I also see it as a more updated and mature take on those paper snowflakes we all know and love from our childhoods.The main ingredient is cardboard, so it’s another recycled craft! To make it even easier, you can just glue glitter to one side and then affix the flakes to walls, kitchen cabinets, or doors. The instructions are easy, but there is a helpful video as well.

Recycled Greetings

11 Dec

The holidays are quickly approaching, and my bank account is emptying just as fast. Between buying gifts, holiday ensembles, and ingredients for cookies, I certainly can’t afford to spend extra bucks on holiday decorations. I can, however, use a little imagination to craft free and recycled decor. Now, I swear I am not a hoarder, but I happen to have saved old Christmas cards. They’re just always so pretty and festive that I hate to throw them away. And apparently, they do come in handy! Thanks to Good Housekeeping, I now have a use for those old cards. The instructions are pretty easy and all you really have to buy is a foam wreath form.

Upon seeing that craft I began wondering what else could be made using leftover cards. I then created a super simple craft of my own. Normally, I would just upload a picture and type up the directions. However, this past week I was also working on a project for my online journalism class. One of the parts of the project was to create a video. I’m not exactly an on-camera type of person. I like the behind the scenes kind of anonymity that writing gives me. But, alas, I created the video (with a lot of  help from my roomie Sam) and uploaded it to youtube. So, who knows, maybe it will be the next “Charlie bit my finger“.

Embrace the trash

11 Dec

Everyone has those things in their apartment. Maybe it’s that weird kitten statue that your great aunt bought you, maybe it’s a kitschy Betty Boop lamp that was so cool five years ago, or maybe it’s something that you loved as a child, but now collects dust in a corner. You try to release it into the world, but no one buys it at the garage sale, and none of your friends will take it either. We’ve all heard that old saying, “one person’s trash is another person’s treasure,”  but for one artist, one person’s trash is inspiration. Courtesy of The New York Times, a great and interesting slide-show for any pack-rat: “Accumulation and its Discontents“. While I’m not suggesting that everyone run out and create an exhibit honoring your old Mr. Potato Head or something, I am a huge proponent of perusing yard sales and flea markets for a formerly neglected decoration. Most people have a dedicated junk space, so ask your relatives if they have anything that they want to get rid of. When decorating on a budget, it’s really fun to try to re-purpose free items and changing them from forgotten to featured item.