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Friday, 23 September


Finding Calm Outside of Manhattan Design*Sponge

Finding Calm Outside of Manhattan

Living in the midwest, it can be shocking to hear what real estate goes for on the coasts. Whenever I get dreamy-eyed about moving to New York or California, I just have to remember one thing: the money I save from living in Des Moines, IA not only gets me a giant apartment, but it also allows me to travel to the cities I love. Jeff, a gallery archivist, book collector and writer, and Emily Alford, an interior designer, were renting in the North Park Slope neighborhood of Brooklyn, NY when they started talking about buying a house. “After many long discussions, spreadsheets, and professional-forecasting we decided it was time … only to realize that the Brooklyn we called home was way too expensive for us to even consider,” Jeff says.

“We discovered Ditmas Park, which managed to be a familiar sort of Brooklyn but also projected this illusion of suburban living. We now own a 1BR in a giant co-op building on a tree-lined street full of stunning, single-family Victorian homes. When we leave Manhattan at the end of the day and arrive here, it’s a whole different world: Your neighbors say hello, in the summer you can hear lawnmowers in the distance, and people don’t have stoop sales — they have garage sales. You can escape the busy-busy Manhattan mindset pretty easily here.”

One of the challenges that Jeff and Emily have found in their home is finding a place for all of their books and mementos. “We moved in about a year and a half ago, and I still consider our home as in-progress,” Emily shares. “I think as long as you’re still enjoying finding quirky new things, coming up with projects, etc., it’s a continuing process and your home will grow and evolve along with you. That means editing just as much as you add, and I think we’ve learned how to do that pretty effectively.” According to Jeff, this editing has a lot to do with his book collection. “Generally speaking, we have an ongoing challenge of finding a way to filter my passion for rare books and collecting through Emily’s more refined design sensibility,” Jeff notes. “Because of my reviewing, novels consistently flow through the apartment, so there’s a lot of stuff for us to manage. To avoid milk-crates and bowing shelves, we designed a floor-to-ceiling built-in bookshelf and took all their variable heights and depths into careful consideration.” The combination of literature, art and beautiful furniture turns their challenge into a lovely design aesthetic.

Emily and Jeff’s home is filled with gorgeous collections and rare finds. The eclectic, sophisticated design is Emily’s talent on display. She has taken their work, passions and hobbies and has created a beautiful home that reflects those concepts. They plan to change parts of their place as they continue to live there, but for now, this space they own outside of the busy city and away from their jobs is perfectly suited for them to find peace and calm. “We’re most thankful that somehow our adult lives in New York City have cosmically aligned in a way that allowed us to buy something here,” Jeff shares. “This is such an inspiring c...


6 Travel Skincare Essentials Design*Sponge

6 Travel Skincare Essentials

When it comes to beauty products, there’s only one category in which I allow myself to indulge: skincare. For as long as I can remember, I’ve cared about my skin health more than anything else. Maybe it’s growing up in a beach town where we all spent too much time in the sun or perhaps it’s just another way for me to exercise my control issues, but keeping a close eye on my skin and skincare regimen has always been a calming thing for me. So when it comes to skincare products, I’m something of an obsessive tester.

I’ve tried just about everything on the market, from everyday drugstore finds (usually my favorites) to high-end, multi-step Korean skincare systems. When I hit the road this fall for our book tour, I’m taking these six pieces with me because they’ve proven to be super successful all summer and they’re worth making room for in my carry-on. So if you’re in need of some great travel-sized skincare essentials, meet your new best friends. xo, grace


Design*Sponge Book Tour: CHICAGO! Design*Sponge


Back in 2011 we had SO much fun on our book stop in Chicago, Illinois. I’m so happy to be heading back for In the Company of Women for one heck of a great event taking place on Sunday, September 8th!

I’m going to be joined on stage by some of my favorite women in business who I admire so dearly. Come meet these incredible business owners: Jocelyn Delk Adams of Grandbaby Cakes, Dawn Hancock of Firebelly DesignLauren Ash of Black Girl in OmSusie Daly of Renegade Craft FairMaya-Camille Broussard of Justice of the Pies and Patrice Perkins of Creative Genius Law. It’s going to be SUCH a great conversation, I promise you won’t want to miss it!

GET YOUR TICKETS HERE! Thanks so much to The Book Cellar for all their help!


Each ticket includes a copy of In the Company of Women, the panel discussion, a book signing afterwards and a limited-edition illustration tote, while sup...

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Thursday, 22 September


Fan-Made Transformers Movie Celebrates Cosplay and Practical Effects Make: DIY Projects and Ideas for Makers

GENERATION 1_HERO6.6.2016.mp4_000218072When Lior Molcho, saw that the Arizona Autobots group had over 20 members with costumes, he just knew he needed to film this.

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The post Fan-Made Transformers Movie Celebrates Cosplay and Practical Effects appeared first on Make: DIY Projects and Ideas for Makers.


Harvest and Ferment Your Own Simple Hot Sauce Make: DIY Projects and Ideas for Makers

Photography by Dale DoughertyMaking your own hot sauce is so easy and rewarding, you might never go back to store-bought sauce ever again!

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The post Harvest and Ferment Your Own Simple Hot Sauce appeared first on Make: DIY Projects and Ideas for Makers.


This Custom Machine 3D Prints Incredible Ceramic Sculptures Make: DIY Projects and Ideas for Makers

image41It's taken many prototypes, but Taekyeom Lee has created a 3D printer that can extrude clay to create ceramic sculptures.

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The post This Custom Machine 3D Prints Incredible Ceramic Sculptures appeared first on Make: DIY Projects and Ideas for Makers.


Maker Spotlight: Alex Weiss and Ruwan Subasinghe Make: DIY Projects and Ideas for Makers

wnapu8hug1rxlejuvjos6j835cj52ir5ix1g1op_9hanxae6-36j6fpys49zefijzuqqhr-dpcbb6d19gy7y0iAlex Weiss and Ruwan Subasinghe have been working together on a number of projects for year. Their latest is a venture into small scale farming... the nanofarm!

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Frothy homemade iced coffee with simple ingredients Funky Junk Interiors

instant-homemade-frothy-iced-coffee-002When we were in Hawaii this past summer, iced coffee became a daily habit. Would you believe I had never had one before, other than an iced cappuccino from Tim Horton’s? I didn’t really get how cold coffee on ice could be good. I liked mine steaming hot, with sugar and real cream, thankyouverymuch! Well, […]

The post Frothy homemade iced coffee with simple ingredients appeared first on Funky Junk Interiors.


2 Story Tiny House / $7,000 – Mortgage Free – Go Off Grid CHEAP!!!

“Here’s a company that is selling these 2 story 16×16 tiny homes or off grid cabins for $6,999. They build these on site but only around the east Tennessee area.

I said in the video they are $6,200 for 16×16 but I was thinking of the 14×14 for $5,200. This is the perfect way to own a small home cheap and mortgage free. You could pay cash for this and finish the inside over time. No point in being in debt for 30 years just to have a place to call home. A 2 story tiny home that can be built off grid. Excellent business idea also for those who know construction. You can build these for cheap and sell these as side work. Cheap, spacious and affordable living.”

There are storage shed companies in every larger city. The design shown here is just one of many examples. As explained in the video, you can have extra windows added, etc. A little house/cabin like this could be set on pier footings to avoid the cost and labor of a permanent foundation. It’s an option for those who need rapid shelter and/or temporary shelter while their permanent natural home is being constructed. Beats living in a tent. The shed could later be used for shop space and storage.



Summer Days DIYdiva

Summer might be drawing to a close, but we’re still having wonderful weather in Michigan, and you’d have a tough time luring me back into the house for indoor projects just yet.

I’m focusing more on chores and maintenance (and enjoying my time outdoors) rather than big projects right now, but I expect to have one more big outdoor project push to get things done before winter.


The clematis I started in spring bloomed recently, and I already love it. Can’t wait to see it once it starts growing over the top of the pergola in the next year or two.


For most of the summer I’ve been surrounded on all sides by 6-foot tall wall of corn, which has made the farm seem more like an isolated little slice of paradise than usual.

Earlier this year I made a few upgrades to my patio as well. For the first two years in this house I just had some old patio furniture tossed out there…


Then last year I finally bought an outdoor sectional and built a concrete-topped patio table…


And this year I added some color and created more of a “space” by getting a bunch of planters and filling them with grasses…


(I also changed up the color scheme a bit.) It feels a lot more finished now…


And it’s a much more inviting space.


(The cat agrees.)

I also had an old hand-me-down gas grill that caught on fire one night (literally melted the hose to the propane tank in two, so that’ll make your life flash before your eyes for a minute) and I decided to replace it with a charcoal grill. One of unexpected benefits of my new charcoal grill was that with the simple addition of a Kettlepizza kit, the whole thing turns into a wood-fired pizza oven.





Retro Wood Toy Pretend Play Kitchen Dish Hutch

The Holidays are just around the corner!  This year, I hope you consider building or purchasing handmade gifts - it's good for everyone (except the freight ships) to support local materials and makers.  That's My Letter and I got quite and exciting line up for this year's Handbuilt Holiday!

Last Christmas we built this little play stove for my kiddos, and it has been loved, used, abused, and still looks brand new! You can find the plans for this little play kitchen stove here.

The kids liked the stove so much, we had to make them a matching dish hutch.  I love the retro styling, and how it's not too girly.  I very much appreciate that my husband helps in the kitchen and can cook, and definitely want my son to be just as comfortable in the kitchen.  So why not start him out early and encourage our little man to cook from the beginning?  A gender neutrel kitchen was the trick.

To get those cute sliding doors (that actually work really well) we just used some drywall end trim beading (look for it in the drywall aisle it is used to finish 1/2" drywall ends) and cut scrap 1/4" plywood to fit in the channels.  Much easier and more functional than hinges for this applicaiton.

Do share if you build, I'd love to see how your retro style play kitchen turns out!

XO Ana





DIY Mason Jar Caddy and YouTube Video! Shanty 2 Chic

Hey there! Join us on Instagram and Pinterest to keep up with our most recent projects and sneak peeks! Check out our new how-to videos on YouTube! Make sure to subscribe to our channel so you don't miss any! Hey guys! We combined our love of mason jars, storage and wood to make this cutie {...Read More...}

The post DIY Mason Jar Caddy and YouTube Video! appeared first on Shanty 2 Chic.


Makers + Museum = Magic in Milwaukee Make: DIY Projects and Ideas for Makers

mfm makey signMilwaukee Makerspace and the Betty Brinn Children's Museum are a perfect match to tackle Maker Faire Milwaukee and other collaborative projects.

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Design*Sponge Book Tour: Rhinecliffe, NY! Design*Sponge


I am so excited to announce my new hometown event for our In the Company of Women book tour! This winter will mark our second year living in the Hudson Valley full time and I couldn’t be happier to celebrate that, and our new book, with an event with one of my favorite local book stores,Oblong Books.

On Saturday, October 22nd, I’ll be joined by some of my favorite local female business owners to talk about everything from mentors and business plans to social media, leaving the city and what it’s like to find your voice as a boss. Come join me and meet these incredible women: interior designer Sheila Bridges, potter Paula Greif, chef and restauranteurs Elise Kornack and Anna Hieronimus of Take Root and Tracy Kennard of Kennard & Daughters and Brunette Wine Bar.

I’m so excited that this event takes place on a weekend, because it’s a great excuse to book a hotel and make a weekend of it! This time of year is just breath-taking upstate, so come join us for a great night! *If you’re coming from NYC, you can easily take the train from Grand Central!

GET YOUR TICKETS HERE! Thanks so much to Oblong Books for all their help!



Studio Tour: Fuzzco Design*Sponge

Studio Tour: Fuzzco

For Helen Rice and Josh Nissenboim, every day is steeped in creativity and culture. Partners in both life and work, together they launched Fuzzco, a full-service creative agency that partners with clients to design influential brand experiences. “Rather than framing our work within a traditional marketing approach, we draw inspiration from the broader world around us,” Helen begins, “the visual and performing arts, fashion and architecture.” To help bring that mission to life for their clients, it was paramount to have a centrally-located space that could echo that manifesto and offer their growing team a home base that was both inspirational and comfortable.

When they discovered this derelict metal warehouse that had been built in the 70s, the upside was the same as the downside: the sheer amount of space. With 7,692 square feet to work with, they had more than enough space to accommodate a sprawling office with lots of breathing room, a photography studio, a games room and library, and ample room for storage, but knowing how to best organize the space was stunting at first. In addition, while the location was just two blocks from where Helen and Josh live in an up-and-coming neighborhood in Charleston, SC the building needed plumbing and HVAC, all new electrical, a new roof and — needless to say — a design transformation of both the interior and exterior.

To help execute their vision, the couple worked with architect David Thompson to create a modern, gallery-like space that would also allow them to open up a product studio and retail shop, a dream they had conceived long ago. With a goal to craft “something that we could style differently year to year as our interests and tastes change,” Pretend Store was born and became just as important to the renovation as the second-floor office.

After installing six large skylights in the roof which immediately transformed the upstairs studios, the rest of the space came together thanks to a talented and helpful cast of local artists and makers: Michael James Moran built the entryway pieces, benches and side tables using shou sugi ban (charred wood) from local pine trees; Helen and Josh designed standing desks with Peyton Avrett; Billy Compton outfitted details such as the plywood Judd tables in the craft room and the whiteboards; and Workstead provided lighting and helped come up with a solution for hiding the insulation under the roof using peg-boards. As a final touch, they installed a honey bee observation hive. “The hive sits inside and you can look into it through panes of glass,” Helen explains. “The bees fly through a tube in the wall to get in and out to gather food and water. They are amazing to watch.”

A collaborative effort from start to finish, it took Helen and Josh two years to find, plan, and fully renovate Fuzzco, but, as Helen says, “We’re really happy with how it turned out — and two and a half years later, it still feels fresh.” –Sabrina



10 Overlooked Wedding Gifts to Add to your Registry Design*Sponge


A few weeks back, we were lucky enough to share our team member Lauren’s beautiful outdoor wedding. So many of you reached out to thank her for the inspiration that we started to think about how hard it is to tackle the wedding registry process, between choosing flowers, a venue and all of the other details for the big day. We thought we’d share some of the most overlooked pieces that don’t end up on the list in hopes that any of you out there planning (or helping plan) a wedding find it helpful in the throes of wedding planning stress.

Take a peek and let us know what you’d add to the list so we can incorporate it into our upcoming wedding series that will come with a printable guide of tips from us here at Design*Sponge and you, our readers! We’re teaming up with Macy’s who has mastered the registry process, making it quick, easy and stress-free with nice surprises like really good price points on big-ticket items. I registered with Macy’s years ago and everyone literally thanked me for keeping it down to one registry venue. I wish I would have had this list, though! Not a day goes by that I don’t long for a fancy vacuum to battle my daily pet hair clean-up ritual. —Caitlin

*Image above from our team member Lauren’s beautiful outdoor wedding this summer in Iowa.

No. 1: A Great Vacuum

This is a must-have, especially if you’re a pet owner! Laying out a small fortune is often not in the newlyweds’ budget, so getting a little help from family or friends for a reliable (and powerful) vacuum is a huge help. Our favorite is the Dyson Animal Canister vacuum.



*This post was created in partnership with our sponsor,...


A Modern, Light-Filled Home Softened with Textiles Design*Sponge

A Modern, Light-Filled Home Softened with Textiles

After falling in love with the creative spirit of south Austin, TX, Ryan and Beth Vanderfolk knew exactly where they needed to put down roots. With raising their adorable toddler in the forefront of their minds, they found the perfect neighborhood with all the amenities – a spacious park, pool, and mature trees – and decided to build their dream home.

Starting from scratch, the couple was able to design a home that completely matched their wants, needs, and personal style. “We wanted the house to feel super open and airy, with a ton of natural light,” Beth shares. They used large windows and high ceilings to make the home feel “… as close to living outside as possible,” with a beautiful view of trees and sky.

However, the abundance of natural light paired with white walls, expansive concrete floors, and an open-concept layout created a cold canvas that Beth needed to warm up. Using contacts she made in Istanbul, she found textiles in all the right sizes to fill her space. After she was done finding what she needed for her home, she continued sourcing pieces she loved and launched her own shop, Vander Interiors.

The Vanderfolks also wanted a home that’s designed around cooking, entertaining, and gathering. With an open-concept floor plan and a large backyard, it’s easy for their guests to feel welcome in their space and socialize. —Tawnee

Photography by Alysha Rainwaters


Master bedroom
Rug – Rugs USA
Bed – West Elm
Benches – Target
Desk & chair – Ikea
Blue chair – OneKingsLane
Lamp – West Elm
Leather chair – vintage
Nightstands – Target
Dresser – Land of Nod
Round mirror – Wisteria
Necklace stand and cloche – Pottery Barn
Glass frame – Kate Spade
Floor mirror – Vintage
Horses print – Z Gallerie
Bell garland – Piece Collective in Venice, CA

Master bathroom
Bath mats & towels – Pottery Barn
White ceramic tray – Homegoods
Glass frame – Kate Spade
Countertops – Caesarstone Nougat from Treehouse

Vintage kilim from Turkey
Prints from various Liz Lambert hotels framed by Framebridge
Pendant light – Artecnica Shayk from

Guest room
Chair – Furbish Studio
Print – Public School Advertising (Austin)
Side tables – Threshold for Target
Day of the Dead print –...

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Wednesday, 21 September


Maker to Market: Lisa Fetterman Shares Her Nomiku Story Make: DIY Projects and Ideas for Makers

LisaQFetterman-33Lisa Fetterman was a cooking enthusiast who wanted to make sous vide devices more affordable, and that meant learning some maker skills.

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EspoTek’s Labrador Packs 5 Lab Instruments onto a Single Board Make: DIY Projects and Ideas for Makers

The Labrador comes packed with an oscilloscope, waveform generator, power supply, logic analyzer and multimeterFor a board that includes a multimeter, oscilloscope, and logic analyzer, the EspoTek's Labrador seems like a promising option.

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Control Animatronic Halloween Props from Your Phone Make: DIY Projects and Ideas for Makers

Screen Shot 2016-09-12 at 1.22.54 PMScare trick-or-treaters precisely when you want to with the help of some Wi-Fi enabled microcontrollers and Node.js.

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Samaritan’s Purse Planning 500 Earthbag Houses in Nepal

“Nepal’s April 2015 earthquake destroyed 91 of the 97 homes in Kumari Maya Tamang’s village a two-hour drive on bumpy and winding dirt roads from Kathmandu.

Almost all of the destroyed homes were two storeys high and made from red bricks mortared layer upon layer. When the earthquake hit, the brick walls quickly buckled and fell. The same thing happened in dozens of other Nepalese communities—killing more than 8,850 people, injuring almost 22,000, and leaving 3.5 million temporarily homeless in the nation of 26 million.

Because Tamang is 84, you might assume she’s reluctant to embrace new construction methods—insisting instead on a replacement home that’s almost identical to her old one.

But Tamang, a widow, is one of a handful of people in her village excitedly preparing to move into new homes that are nothing like their old ones. Samaritan’s Purse, in partnership with a Christian organization in Nepal, is building five model homes made from stacked bags of earth, similar to military bunkers.

“I’m so happy,” Tamang said, her weathered face breaking into a broad smile. “I’ve never seen this type of technology but I’m not afraid. I’m feeling very confident as I’ve watched skilled workers build my home.”

She pointed toward one of her village’s old-style houses and said: “I’d rather have a new-style home. It seems safer. And I am thankful to the people who have donated for these earthbag houses to be built.”
Samaritan’s Purse has approval from the Nepalese government to build 500 of the earthbag homes in various communities, Lakshmeshwar says. “We’re going to build . . . for especially vulnerable people.”

More at the source: Samaritan’s Purse
Questions for the builders:
Are they using continuous barbed wire between courses the correct way or only using little short pieces placed perpendicular to the walls?
Rebar pins only in the corners?
No buttresses?
Reinforced concrete bond beams?
My email is at the top of the page under About Us if you want to talk about these things.



Design*Sponge Book Tour: Philadelphia! Design*Sponge


I have been feeling anxious and excited for our Philadelphia book tour event for In the Company of Women because it feels so amazing to be organizing an event celebrating strong talented women during an election with the first female candidate on a major party ticket ever. Regardless of your politics, this is a huge moment and this panel talk, right after the election, is certainly going to be an especially meaningful discussion.

I’m thrilled to be joining these amazing women for a panel discussion on Thursday, November 10th at Moore College of Art and Design along with the AIGA. Come join me to talk about life, work and how to work on achieving your career goals with: artist and designer Veronica Corzo-Duchardt, chef and author Klancy Miller, florist and event designer Sullivan Owen and artist and designer Kimberly Glyder

GET YOUR TICKETS HERE! Thanks so much to AIGA and Moore College of Art and Design for having us!


Each ticket includes a copy of In the Company of Women, the panel discussion, a...


The Beauty of Self-Care: Lesson 3 – Practice Design*Sponge


Here we are with our third installment of our Self-Care series, and we’re humbled by all of the comments, emails and notes we’ve received from readers. I didn’t realize how empowering it would be to share these posts and exercises with you all. It’s made my own self-care a seriously happy endeavor simply because I know there are so many of you out there in the world working alongside me. Today I thought it was appropriate to share some tech solutions I use when I am waiting for things in life that really try my patience (Lesson One), like waiting in my doctor’s waiting room and standing in a sea of parents when I pick my daughter up from school and feeling guilty for not chatting it up. It’s times like those when I struggle with my breathing and sinking into a calm place, so I tend to rely on technology for a little help. I don’t consider this a bad thing or in opposition to device-free time. In fact, I’m grateful these apps exist because they help me realize my phone isn’t evil — it’s simply a tool for many different things and I can choose what I need from it at any given time.

This week’s lesson is focused on Practice. I’m actually not referring to the type of practice that yoga practitioners refer to. I’m talking about good, old fashioned practice as in doing something again and again! That’s why technology is helpful at the beginning of a self-care routine — it actually helps guide you and reminds you to practice. So don’t feel like you’re cheating when you whip out your phone to get into some self-care. You won’t need it forever!

Please click through for my favorite digital tools that help me remain in the moment and keep me smiling. I’d also love to know if you have any favorites that I haven’t included, so feel free to add them to the comments. –Caitlin

Image above by the talented Alea Toussaint.



10 Must-Read Books for Women in Business Design*Sponge

10 Must-Read Books for Women in Business

All summer long I devoured business book after business book, looking for some last-minute inspiration and motivation as I hit the road to celebrate our new book, In the Company of Women. There are so many incredible business books on the market, but I really enjoyed focusing on books that were meant to address some of the unique issues facing women. Whether it was a firsthand account from a mother who had given birth and headed back to run her company the next week, or the stories of women who work to overcome and combat sexism in the workplace, their stories gave me the courage and strength to head out this fall and talk about all of these issues across the country with some of the most inspiring women I know in business.

So today I’m sharing 10 books I think any woman in business should have (whether you’re an established pro or are just hoping to launch one day) on their shelves or pick up at their local library. Here’s to more women in charge of their own amazing businesses! xo, grace

*Some of these books are older, some newer. Some are business-focused and others are more outside of the box, but I promise you’ll find inspiration in each one.


13 Airy and Open Floor Plans We Love Design*Sponge

13 Airy and Open Floor Plans We Love

From a design standpoint, it can be easier to decorate a home’s main living spaces when they are separate, divided rooms. Couches have designated places to go, the wall color can differ room by room, and the mess in the kitchen doesn’t have to affect the company hanging out in the living room. An open-concept living space means that the aesthetic has to be fairly consistent throughout, but when it’s done well, it’s gorgeous.

The common living area is designed for community. We love that these spaces aren’t closed off, but instead encourage visual engagement from area to area. We’ve seen so many lovely open layouts over the years on Design*Sponge and we’ve selected a few of our favorites to share here today. Find inspiration for creating a cohesive and comfortable look in these 13 large, open living areas. –Lauren


Design*Sponge Book Tour: Washington, D.C.! Design*Sponge


Washington, D.C. will always have a special place in my heart because it was always my “big city” to visit while growing up in Virginia. My first big solo car drives were done on the way to Georgetown in 1997 (where I was smitten with Urban Outfitters’ vintage resale section — back when they used to do that). So I’m thrilled to be heading back again this fall for our In the Company of Women book tour!

On Tuesday October 25th I’ll be joined on stage by some amazing local business owners: Sarah Gordon and Sheila Fain of Gordy’s Pickle Jar, Amanda McClements of Salt & SundryNicole Crowder of Nicole Crowder Photography and Charlotte Cannon of The Vintage Vogue. We’ll be talking about community, their paths to success, and what they’ve learned from times when things didn’t go according to plan. My family is driving up from Virginia for this event, so I hope you’ll come join us for one heck of a fun event with the whole Bonney crew!

GRAB YOUR TICKET HERE! Thanks so much to KramerBooks and Dock 5 for having us.


Tuesday, 20 September


Raw Craft with Anthony Bourdain Is Back! Make: DIY Projects and Ideas for Makers

glowfaceElizabeth Brim is the focus of the latest episode from Anthony Bourdain's "Raw Craft" series, and this blacksmith is a delight.

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This Commodore 64 Emulator Comes in a Tiny Package Make: DIY Projects and Ideas for Makers

StaringLizard’s MEMWA2 is a tiny Commodore 64 emulator and features a custom PCB, a STMicroelectronics MCU, Alliance Memory DRAM and Analog Devices HDMI transmitterThe MEMWA2 c64 Emulator isn't perfect, but it could be the smallest commodore 64 emulator in the world.

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Illuminate a Dog Collar with LEDs Make: DIY Projects and Ideas for Makers

DogCollar_44Does the sweet pupper or lovable doggo in your life need a light-up collar? Sure, why not.

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The post Illuminate a Dog Collar with LEDs appeared first on Make: DIY Projects and Ideas for Makers.


Maker Spotlight: Chris Clark Make: DIY Projects and Ideas for Makers

Screen Shot 2016-09-18 at 4.47.13 PMChris Clark built Shaper Studios out of his love for surfing and crafting custom surfboards. Meet him next month at Maker Faire San Diego!

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DIY High Back Bench Shanty 2 Chic

Hey there! Join us on Instagram and Pinterest to keep up with our most recent projects and sneak peeks! Check out our new how-to videos on YouTube! Make sure to subscribe to our channel so you don't miss any! THIS! This is hands down one of our very favorite builds! If you caught the Davis {...Read More...}

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Kristie Wolfe Builds Underground Home in Rural WA Hobbit Village

Please read my comments below this blog post. This project could have been significantly improved by using earthbags instead of wood framing.

“Inspired by the success of the Hawaii treehouse she built for $11,000, Kristie Wolfe began searching for land to build a “Hobbit”-inspired village. Knowing that there is land to be found for cheap in this country (she bought her Hawaii property for $8,000), she began to search the Northwest for sites.

“There’s a lot of land everywhere, if you look on craigslist, if you look on zillow, you can find property so it’s not really that there’s not a lot. The issue is with property that’s in my price range- I’m looking for property that’s $10,000 to 20,000- usually there’s a reason why it’s cheap, it’s either an easement problem or you have to drive through a crappy neighborhood… but if you’re wanting to be off-grid, it opens up a whole world of selections, there’s a ton out there.”

Wolfe paid $18,000 for 5 acres on a hillside above Lake Chelan, Washington. Being a couple miles down a dirt road, there was no option to be on the grid so Wolfe put in a solar panel, septic and a water tank (filled by truck for now) and began to dig the first of her underground homes.

At 288 square feet, Wolfe’s “tiny house in the shire” was over the maximum square footage allowed for an un-permitted build so she went to the county for approval. With only hand-sketched plans on graph paper, she was able to get a permit.

The structure went up in a few days “with a lot of help from family and friends” and it was “wrapped and roofed” in a few weeks and then Wolfe finished the interior on her own.

She doesn’t plan to change much of her design except to make the windows larger. The completed “village” will include an above-ground communal kitchen built to look like a thatched-roof English-style pub.”

Thanks to Kirsten Dirksen for another great video. As wonderful looking as this hobbit house is, I just moaned a loud ohhhh no when I saw they framed it with toxic pressure treated wood. This is such a shame, such a lost opportunity. This type of structure (underground or earth bermed with living roof) is PERFECT for earthbags. As long-time readers already know, earthbags (sand bags) are used to retain soil along highways and to build other similar projects. Based on testing, the US Dept. of Transportation estimates polypropylene sand bags can last over 500 years. Still not sure if earthbags are strong enough? Just look at the giant sand bag/earthbag retaining wall in this blog post. Giant retaining walls like this are designed by geotextile engineers. It’s a sub field of engineering. My point is earthbag technology is extremely well proven to retain the massive forces against underground structures and retaining walls.

In addition to the above suggestions, consider making a curved back wall with horizontal layers of geotextile fabric for even greater strength. See how Jake is building is earthbag earthship: His engineer and architect can get a structure like this code approved at lower cost, and it would be stronger, more durable, nontoxic and more sustainable.



No-slide, Removable Small Parts Drawers Make: DIY Projects and Ideas for Makers

noSlidePartsDrawers_1At Jer's Workshop, Jeremy Schmidt builds a series of wooden lock-into-place parts bin drawers.

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The post No-slide, Removable Small Parts Drawers appeared first on Make: DIY Projects and Ideas for Makers.


35 Awesome Projects from Our New Community Platform Make: DIY Projects and Ideas for Makers

communityWe've had a lot of great additions to our new community projects page! From cotton boll stems to DIY weather stations, we're seeing lots of great stuff.

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The post 35 Awesome Projects from Our New Community Platform appeared first on Make: DIY Projects and Ideas for Makers.


My Young House Love Podcast Interview!

Happy Monday guys and gals!  It's always hard to get back into the weekday schedule after a few days off, our family struggles just like any other.  But Monday's are so much better now with Young House Love's new podcast!  

If you haven't yet heard, John and Sherry from Young House Love now have a podcast.  I listen to John and Sherry's new podcast every Monday, it's like a wonderful cup of coffee to start my work week off.  




My Guest Episode

In this week's episode it is a great honor for me to join John and Sherry, and chat about how I got started building, and how you can too.

I hope you have a chance to listen to the podcast, and subscribe and check out the show notes page here.





Topic Links

Just in case you want more information about a few things we chat about on the podcast -


Farmhouse Bed - This was my first big project, and one of the first plans that I shared on my blog.  Almost a decade later, it's still sturdy and beautiful.  You can grab the plans here.





Getting Started Building - If you'd like to learn more about the tools I use and recommend, you can check out my Getting Started Guide here.




Our Dream House Build - 15 years of saving, dreaming and planning and it's finally happening!  You can subscribe to get updates of all new episodes here.


Thanks for listening, hope you enjoyed!

XO Ana


A Vintage Lover’s Home in Long Beach, CA Design*Sponge

A Vintage Lover’s Home in Long Beach, CA

 You can find just about anything online these days, including the perfect house. After randomly Googling “homes for sale in Long Beach,” Michelle and Karim Qazi found themselves on a website that specializes in Cliff May homes. With king palms, a swimming pool, and more windows than walls, they were more than sold on their first home – they were in love.

Before moving in, the happy couple knew that they needed to tear down walls, move the laundry out of the kitchen and into the garage, and gut the kitchen. They got the renovation process started and left for a few weeks to get married in Hawaii. When they returned, the only place that wasn’t completely torn up or full of storage was the garage. They opened up the garage door and tried to eat some drive-thru tacos – their first official meal at home. But without a working light in the garage, they had to open and close the garage every two minutes to trigger the overhead light to stay on.

Fortunately, they’ve come a long way since then. They now have two kids, two dogs, and a beautiful home full of unique treasures. As the owner of 6th and Detroit, a vintage store located in Downtown Long Beach, CA and online, it’s only natural for Michelle to express her creative spirit in decorating her home. Her goal was to “…create an inviting, warm space by mixing mid-century styles that feel current and using as many textures as possible. [She] wanted to embrace indoor/outdoor living and utilize all the natural light.” With a clean, functional home surrounded sunlight and plants, the Qazi family created their own paradise in California. —Tawnee

Photography by Christel Robleto



Living Room
Green Couch – Custom design by David Galindo
Embroidered Pillows – Safavieh
Rug and Coffee Table- Vintage by 6th And Detroit
Mirror – Homegoods
White Potted Plants – Peacock & Co.

Detail Living Room Shot:
Painted Sun Mirror – Vintage Etsy
White Circle Wall Sconce – Ikea
Cane Club Chair – American Standard Supply Co.
Pillow, Rug, Rattan Plant Stand and African Market Basket – Vintage by 6th And Detroit
White Potted Ponytail Palm – Peacock & Co.

Detail Living Room Shot
White Potted Fiddle Leaf – Peacock & Co.
Ceramic Lamp – Vintage Etsy
Speaker Table – Long Beach Flea Market
George Nelson Herman Miller Sofa Tab...


A Split-Level Gem Where Two styles Have Become One Design*Sponge

A Split-Level Gem Where Two styles Have Become One

When most homeowners start to look for a new abode, it’s all about location, location, location. It makes sense. Buying a home is a big investment, so where it stands isn’t something to take lightly. But when you love every corner of your city as much as LUSITANO1143’s founder Carlos João Parreira and his partner Greg do, location takes a backseat to finding a gem you can make your own.

Nearly two years ago, these New Yorkers decided to leave the rent race and find a spot to call their own. When they did, Carlos and Greg expanded their search well beyond the Tribeca stomping grounds they were so familiar with. No borough was off-limits, and no apartment was outside of their consideration. They were looking for outdoor space, a place that would let them combine their styles, and a spot to settle down with their two pets. In the end, a stand-out, split-level apartment situated in one of Williamsburg, Brooklyn’s old cheesecake factories proved to be the perfect option for the pair.

The sleek – yet casual – apartment boasts private, outdoor space and three stories worth of renovations. When all was said and done, the biggest undertaking proved to be re-outfittting the kitchen. It took over 20 trips to IKEA to finish up the space! The pair loves entertaining, though, so renovating the social hub of their home was worth it. Now, guests are greeted by a marble waterfall countertop and streamlined, white cabinetry. When the entertaining is done, it’s now easier than ever for Carlos and Greg to plop down in bed thanks to another of their renovations. The previous owners had a simple ladder leading to their suite, but the full staircase Carlos and Greg installed is much more to the pair’s liking.

While the overhaul was challenging, the changes have proven to be the perfect backdrop for worldly accessories from Carlos’ Portuguese upbringing and Greg’s stint in the UK. The combination of their collections gives the space the dash of personality they’d always wanted in a home. “Our favorite spaces have always been those that reflected the people that lived there, those that made us want to have a cocktail with the [owners],” the couple tells us. I think you’ll agree after taking a peek inside their Brooklyn space that Carlos and Greg have created such a home as that. Anyone would be lucky to sip on a cocktail while soaking up this pretty apartment. Until that day comes, you can virtually visit this stylish set’s first home together after the jump. Enjoy! —Garrett

Photography by Carlos João Parreira...

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