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Friday, 17 November


A Home In Memphis, TN Filled With Vintage Aesthetic and Charm Design*Sponge

Anna and Ben Avant on Design*Sponge

When Anna and Ben Avant decided to sell their East Memphis, TN home and move to the Midtown area of Memphis, finding the right place came with some challenges. They sold their house faster than finding a new one, so they had to move into a rental while Anna was about to give birth to their daughter, Louis. One day, while driving to work, Ben saw the for sale sign going into the yard of a 1938 Tudor. The couple planned to see it that day and as soon as they walked inside, they knew they had found the home for them. It was filled with vintage wallpaper throughout the home, had many of the original fixtures, vintage tubs and sinks, and all the charm they dreamed of. They made an offer right away and moved in shortly after that. Besides needing more room and wanting a bigger yard, I envisioned a house untouched I wanted vintage tile bathrooms and vintage metal kitchen cabinets, Anna shares. It was proving to be very difficult to find a house with the intact vintage character I wanted. This house has it all we have five bedrooms [and] three full baths. The guest bed and bath are downstairs, so our guests have their privacy. And the master and kids rooms are all upstairs, which is also very difficult to find, and I love that our family is all together upstairs.

Anna works from home running her online vintage clothing shop, Hoot + Louise, and Ben is a lighting designer. A turnkey home was also important to the Avants, with their busy schedules and two small children, so changing the lighting was pretty much the only thing they did. We kept a few original fixtures downstairs dining room chandelier, kitchen glass ball pendant, hall light at the bottom of the stairs, and the fish/shell brass sconces in the guest bathroom theyre to die for. All the other lighting we changed. The entryways l...


We Built a Bluetooth-enabled Porch Light and Were Giving It Away Make: DIY Projects and Ideas for Makers

Enter to win this beautiful porch light with Leviton connectivity. There are couple runner-up prizes for the contest as well.

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The post We Built a Bluetooth-enabled Porch Light and Were Giving It Away appeared first on Make: DIY Projects and Ideas for Makers.


5 More Podcasts to Listen to While You Work Make: DIY Projects and Ideas for Makers

While one may never be at a loss for great podcasts, it's difficult to find great podcasts about making. Here are 5 of our favorites.

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Thursday, 16 November


Why Are Some Similar Sheds So Different In Price

This is a guest post from Whatshed When looking for a shed, you may be amazed at the huge difference in prices that there are. We have joined forces once again with Jason at WhatShed and he is going to share with you why sheds that are the same price can differ so much in...

The post Why Are Some Similar Sheds So Different In Price appeared first on


10 Tips for Buying a Sofa Online At Home In Love

This post is written in partnership with Lamps Plus. All opinions are my own.

We recently got a new sofa from an unexpected source...Lamps Plus! And we bought it online without ever sitting in it. Do you think we're crazy??? I admit, I was definitely nervous to get such a major piece of furniture without seeing it in person first...but it turned out perfect, and we have no regrets. Being willing to shop online really opens up your options, especially if you live in a smaller city (Spokane doesn't have many of the national furniture chains). Plus, there are so many online-only furniture companies these days, it's definitely worth looking into them. But I know it can be nerve-wracking to get something that expensive online, so I wanted to share my best tips for success!


1. Sit in other sofas. We've been thinking about getting a new sofa for years, so every time we go to a store that sells furniture, we sit in a few and see what feels comfortable. Before we even started looking online, we already knew our ideal style (English roll arm) and ideal dimensions (at least 85" wide and 40" deep). If you're looking at a sofa online, go to a furniture store in your city that has comparable pieces, and sit in some sofas that are similar in style and have similar dimensions. Even if they're not the exact same as the one you're considering, it should help you get an idea of whether that depth feels good, whether those arm rests are a good height, etc.

2. Compare the details to brands you know. Besides comparing measurements, you can also compare other product details to brands you're familiar with. Our old sofa was from Pottery Barn, so we literally went through and compared the bullet points for our old sofa and the new one we were considering. Is the frame hardwood? What are the cushions filled with? These details will help you compare the quality across brands, to see whether you're really getting a good deal or just a lesser-quality sofa. For the record, the Lamps Plus sofa we got held up in comparison very well--it has a kiln-dried hardwood frame, hand-tied 8-way heavy gauge steel springs, and a blend of polyester and feather filled back cushions that are channel-sewn for durability.


3. Me...


A Zero Waste Guide to Reusable Coffee Cups Treading My Own Path | Zero Waste + Plastic-Free Living

Is a reusable coffee cup a zero waste essential? Well, that depends on your perspective. Do you think that coffee is a life essential? ;) Seriously, whether you personally think so or not, the fact is that over 500 billion disposable coffee cups are produced every year. Which clearly shows that plenty of people do []


Pizzeria Pronto Outdoor Pizza Oven

Make homemade pizza in a Pizzeria Pronto outdoor pizza oven

Make homemade pizza in a Pizzeria Pronto outdoor pizza oven

Make healthy homemade pizza in your backyard. The Pizzeria Pronto is Pizzacrafts deluxe outdoor pizza oven that will change pizza night forever! Its lightweight, portable and safe on any surface. Its incredibly easy to use. Simply hook it up to a propane tank, let it pre-heat for 10 minutes, and youre ready to go.

The Pizzeria Pronto reaches cooking temperatures of over 700F and cooks a pizza in only 5 minutes. The Pizzeria Pronto features a heat containing visor and stainless steel reflection plate, resulting in a 20% decrease in cooking time. The Pizzeria Pronto comes with two 14 baking stones. It is not recommended to use a pizza steel on top of the baking stones.
Consider using a no-knead pizza dough recipe on YouTube. Thats what I did for years. Baking the pizza in a gas-fired oven makes the process very fast and simple. You can control the ingredients if its homemade and get it just the way you like it. If its out of your budget then you could buy one of their stones and build a hood over a regular BBQ grill.



DIY Sliding Barn Door Console Shanty 2 Chic

Ok My love for this next piece is extreme!  Look how cute this DIY Sliding Barn Door Console turned out! You can check out the YouTube video tutorial HERE or by clicking the link below! Before we get started, be sure to download and print the FREE PLANS by clicking HERE! The first step of {...Read More...}

The post DIY Sliding Barn Door Console appeared first on Shanty 2 Chic.


Indias Maker Movement Honors the Sweet Spot Where Tradition and Technology Intersect Make: DIY Projects and Ideas for Makers

for the third year in a row, the community converges at Maker Faire Bengaluru, taking place this year on November 17 and 18 at the Bengaluru Palace.

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The post Indias Maker Movement Honors the Sweet Spot Where Tradition and Technology Intersect appeared first on Make: DIY Projects and Ideas for Makers.


Modern Chicken Coop Rogue Engineer

By Jamison Rantz

When my wife Jamie and our daughter Madison came home with 6 baby chickens, I knew it only meant 1 thing we needed to build a coop. We have wanted chickens for some time now, but buying the chickens before we had a coop really gave us the push we needed to get it done. We wanted to design  coop with clean, modern lines that would not only function great, but also look great sitting in our yard.

This coop was designed for 6 chickens. It has 3 nesting boxes, 2 roosts, large door for easy cleanup,  storage compartment, and a covered run which will keep our chickens covered during the snowy winter months. We put a lot of thought into every inch of this coop, from design to functionality. Im pretty sure our chickens have one of the coolest coops on the block , which I hope will result in many eggs or us!

>> Full Plans on the Simpson Strong-Tie Blog <<

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How to Let Go of Things: One Essential Tip To Make Minimizing Easy and Sustainable Design*Sponge

When Marie Kondos book, The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up, was released in 2014, an intense new wave of minimalism swept the country. People were getting rid of things left and right while espousing the joys of living with less. Communities like The Minimalists had been building steam for a while and there seemed to be a new movement within the interiors community that decided less is most definitely more. But with that movement came criticism. Lots of it. Mainly around the the idea that these new ideals were steeped in classism and elitism. And while I agree with a lot of those critiques, I think theres always a grey area between both extremes were the truth seems to lie.

Thinking about minimalism has been a healthy way for me to better examine the reasons I buy and hold on to things

When Roshanda Cummings and Erin Johnson (below) shared their 10 Tips for Living Minimally Longterm with us last month, one of their ideas really stuck with me. They said to remember that you will always, Begin Again. Meaning, youll inevitably buy something new and end up doing another round of tossing/donating/giving to edit things down. Their long-term approach really clicked with my changing worldview, which is more about small, sustainable commitments rather than grand gestures. Their advice made me think about why finding more meaning in and appreciation for the things I do have is so important to maintain over t...


TechShop Closes Doors, Files Bankruptcy Make: DIY Projects and Ideas for Makers

"Jim Newton, TechShop employees, members, and investors will go forward with their experience. Many will find a way to collaborate and work together again. The world will be a far better place for TechShops experience," says Dan Woods.

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The post TechShop Closes Doors, Files Bankruptcy appeared first on Make: DIY Projects and Ideas for Makers.


Two Dramatic Blue Accents For Your Thanksgiving Table Design*Sponge

Weve seen deep blues make their mark on the home style palette since last fall, and, as we move towards the holiday season, Ive been longing to make some handmade accents for our table. My best friend from NYC is making the trek to sweet, old West Virginia with her family and Im hoping to squeeze in some craft time with her two children and my daughter.

These two DIYs make a beautiful and custom final product, both in glorious shades of blue. The DIY materials for each are under $15 and kid-friendly. Heres to bringing some blue to the table this Thanksgiving! Caitlin

Image above courtesy of The J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles; Cyanotype by Hippolyte Bayard (French, 1801 1887)  [Arrangement of Specimens], about 1842

Sun prints always look lovely and with fall leaves pretty much everywhere, theyre definitely the motif of choice this time of year. Sun prints kits are inexpensive (under $12) and perfectly suited for kids to get in on the action. If youre having a larger gathering and get into a too-may-cooks situation, this is an easy task for an adult or two to take a walk outside with the young ones to collect leaves to print. Even an older child can lead the gang.

Once the prints are ready to go, create place cards with them and place them around the table for a touch of nature in blue and white tones.



Turn PVC into a High Impact Soldering Iron Case Make: DIY Projects and Ideas for Makers

Follow along with Jeremy Cook as he transforms a PVC pipe into a functional, and stylish, case for his soldering iron.

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The post Turn PVC into a High Impact Soldering Iron Case appeared first on Make: DIY Projects and Ideas for Makers.


The Forest Awakens with These Animal Stormtrooper Helmets Make: DIY Projects and Ideas for Makers

William Kang designed his own unique way of celebrating the release of Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens.

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The post The Forest Awakens with These Animal Stormtrooper Helmets appeared fi...

Wednesday, 15 November


Prepping for Winter & The Return Indoors DIYdiva

Up here in Michigan we had beautiful fall weather for about two weeks and then mother nature smirked and drop-kicked us right into winter, which became fully apparent when I found myself driving home last week. In snow.

So by prepping for winter what I really mean is, shit I actually should have done before it started snowing, but will now have to do in sub-freezing weather. Which, if were being honest, is basically par for the course around here. Winter prep is a little depressing and I hate doing it before I actually have to. And now I actually have to, so heres whats on the list:

The Orchard

I didnt plant any new trees this year, and of my 8 apple trees, 2 pear trees, 3 peach trees, and 2 cherry trees, I continue to get an awesome peach harvest


And then only a handful of apples, a couple of pears, and one lonely cherry this year.


Im not sure if my soil is better suited to peaches, or if peach trees just produce more fruit as young trees, but these have done so well that Im considering adding another row of them to the orchard next year. Im hoping the apples, pears, and cherries catch up as they become more established.

The nice thing about winter prep in the orchard is that the fruit trees dont require much in fall. I did spray the peach trees with a copper fungicide last week to combat peach-leaf curl. I had this issue two years ago, and then it was much better this last summer with regular applications of my general fruit-tree spray, but its also recommended that you use a copper fungicide in fall (when 80% of the leaves have fallen, so I was probably a little later than preferred) and then again in spring when the buds are full.


Ill also double-check the stakes for all of the cages surrounding the trees in the next couple of weeks, as Ive had a few blow over in the wind in previous years. Other than that, the orchard is all set for the winter.

The Vineyard

Grape harvest this year was also small



10 Beautiful and Useful Things You Can Create with Earth Plaster

People are often fascinated by the structure of my earthbag home, but in truth that was the easy part. Its the plaster that is an art. And a science. At times I thought it might have even been witchcraft. Because it took me just 6 weeks to build my earthbag house, but almost 2 years to get my plaster sitting beautifully on my walls without cracks or bits of it falling off.

It doesnt have to take that long to learn earth plaster though. I was sitting atop a remote hill in Turkey, and not receiving the correct information about how to deal with my soil and my climate. But once you learn the art of mud render, it opens up a whole world of possibilities. I think its one of the most useful skills Ive ever learned.

Earth plaster (also known as clay plaster) is made from a mixture of earth, clay, straw and sand. The clay is the binding element, hence why its also called clay plaster. Sometimes other ingredients are added into the mixture for various reasons, perhaps to water proof the plaster or to help it adhere better, or to mitigate the damp. Each stage of plaster creation and application is crucial to success. You need to know how to mix it, test it, and apply it.

Heres an incomplete list of just what you can do with earth plaster. The beauty of course is that its insanely inexpensive to make things out of mud. Most of the time its free.

1. Render
The most obvious use of earth plaster is as a natural render.
Read the complete article for free at Mother Earth News, which has been one of the best sources of sustainable living for decades.
Previous blog post about this earthbag house thats survived several earthquakes in Turkey.




Rebuilding Hueyapan, Mexico after the Earthquake

On September 19, 2017 the of community Hueyapan in Morelos, Mexico was devastated by an earthquake. The Center for Encounters and Dialogues, and have started with the reconstruction in Hueyapan. A little more than a month after the earthquake, and two weeks after the first house was started with Superadobe, the foundation and the beginning of the walls of a two-bedroom house were already in place. The house is being built with the contribution of the people of Hueyapan and with the support of the above organizations.

Building houses is very important, but also, strengthening the social fabric at this time is important. The commitment to community interaction is based on learning by doing, and in co-responsibility and collaborative work; only in this way can they go from welfare to the self-management of development actions.

The community network, Tierra Madre, are people and families from the community of Hueyapan Morelos, and other communities in the region, which are organized for the production of organic food. With the advice of the Meeting and Dialogue Center, they started work with the aim of being eco-families. This means that their sanitation system is ecological, with about 120 families using compost toilets.

We do all this for the love of Mother Earth. says Elga Flores, a member of Tierra Madre Hueyapan, with the main motivation to get involved in organic farming and the sale of organic products in solidarity with the schools in Cuernavaca. From the September 2017 earthquake, they have played a central role in reconstruction with sustainable technologies and local and culturally appropriate materials. They also use wood-burning stoves and small family gardens that are the basis of our their current production. They are currently producing organic vegetables and fruits and organic eggs.

They have collected donations in money from friends, family and acquaintances as well as help from Mexico, New Zealand, Australia and the United States....


A Mid-Century Pied--Terre in Portland, OR Design*Sponge

A Mid-Century Pied--Terre in Portland, OR, Design*Sponge

Six blocks from Makelike, the graphic design collective he founded with business partner Mary Kysar, stands Topher Sinkinsons Portland, OR condo. The space is a mid-century gem filled with throwback finds and situated within lush surroundings. On most days, Topher and his partner Jeremy, a carpenter, gaze out from their second-floor treehouse over the greenery below. Even better than these enviable views is the story behind how the place came to be. For Topher, its a tale about community, knowing his neighbors and truly feeling connected to where he lives.

In 2013, Topher started splitting his time between New Orleans and Portland. In an effort to keep costs down, he began looking for properties that wouldnt require much work, had manageable green space and a smaller overall footprint. Luckily, just as this home hunt kicked off, a condo in one of Portlands southeastern neighborhoods came on the market. Boasting updates like fresh countertops, a new skylight and a pristine balcony, the 1950s-era space happened to be the perfect fit. What ended up tipping the scales wasnt furnishings or updates, however, but the people connected to the unit. One of Tophers close friends happened to be the one who was looking to sell, and Tophers best friend from college lived next door.

Convinced hed never find a more perfect fit, Topher signed and swiftly moved in. Since doing so hes further amplified the homes connection to the community by turning it into a showcase of his and Jeremys work, as well as that of their friends and neighbors. The sellers artwork hangs in the living room, bookshelves built by friends decorate the den, and wallpaper from Makelike graces the dining room. And thats not all. Scroll down to check out even more personal touches. Enjoy! ...


My Beauty Routine: 20 Products I Swear By Design*Sponge

For as long as I can remember, Ive been someone who saw my face as the primary place I lived. Its where I feel most comfortable and my full body had just never been that place. (Please tell me someone else knows how that feels?) Maybe I should blame online culture and the way were always reduced to tiny floating head avatars. But I think its also because taking care of my face and skin has always felt like a small way to indulge in my I need to control as much of everything in my life as I can tendency.

I know I cant control how the world around me unfolds, but in that tiny mirror, it feels like one small patch of life I can tinker around in and feel safe.

So, over the past 15 or so years, Ive allowed myself one primary indulgence: investing in skincare and all the tiny rituals that come with it. And for someone who doesnt dare touch the realm of proper beauty bloggers, I think Ive tested as many skincare products as the people who do this for a living. While some people might spend money on shoes, fancy coffee, massages, clothing or nights out on the town, my indulgences are what Julia likes to call my, potions and lotions.

Over the past few years very little about my regimen has changed, and I have a mostly healthy complexion to thank for that. The products Ive grown to trust and swear by are the same ones Ive loved since I was 25, with a few rare exceptions. Ive been posting them here and there on Instagram stories, and the response has been so much more enthusiastic than I ever expected. So today Im sharing my routine, my Top 20 Trusted Products (that I have a standing re-order for) and why I believe in them. For all of you who love a good face ritual, I hope youll enjoy these as much as I do. Heres to small moments, in whatever form you enjoy most, of self-care. xo, grace

*If you have unused beauty and skincare products youd like to donate, please check out these orga...


An Easier Way to Make Dinner At Home In Love

This post is sponsored by HelloFresh. All opinions are 100% my own.

When Ian was born, the company I worked for gave us a gift card for a meal delivery service, and it was honestly my favorite "welcome baby" gift that we received. It was such a lifesaver for those first few months when going to the grocery store seemed like a daunting task, and I didn't have the energy for meal planning and elaborate cooking. With a second baby on the way, I've been wanting to try out another meal delivery service, so when HelloFresh reached out to me I couldn't say yes fast enough. Our box arrived the week we got our first snowfall here in Spokane, so I was also thrilled that I didn't have to drive to the grocery store on snowy roads. Perfect timing all around!

HelloFresh review

I enjoy the process of cooking and I like trying out new recipes and new ingredients when I have time. But I hate meal planning, and it stresses me out to make something new when I'm in a rush (which is pretty much every weeknight). So I rarely ever try new recipes, and instead I revert back to our go-to quick & easy meals...over and over again. That was my favorite part of HelloFresh: all the meal planning was done for me, and I got to try out some new recipes in a really fun and easy way!


There are three basic plans to choose from: vegetarian, classic, and family. We went with the classic plan, and all the meals we got were delicious, flavorful, and super approachable. As for portions, you can either get enough for 2 people or 4 people. Since we're a family of three--and I'm eating for two!--we chose the 4 person plan. Each meal was plenty of food for all of us, and I even had a little left over for lunch the next day. However, I think the portions would be a little light for 4 adults, like if we were having another couple over for dinner. When I cook on my own, I like to make a lot of food so we can eat the leftovers for multiple days (and so I don't have to worry about cooking every night). So I kind of wished that I could have had more left over, but I guess that's a good sign that we enjoyed it so much and we wanted more!



Build a RGB Matrix Electric Guitar Make: DIY Projects and Ideas for Makers

Use a 32x32 Adafruit RGB matrix to decorate your electric guitar with LEDs that respond to the music that you're playing.

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The post Build a RGB Matrix Electric Guitar appeared first on Make: DIY Projects and Ideas for Makers.


Two DIY Floral Arrangements Inspired By Autumn Design*Sponge

Even though the flowers outside have left us to make room for fall leaves, you can still create some top-notch florals for your table by incorporating foraged pieces and even some fruits and vegetables. These two flower arrangements are perfect for holiday entertaining or just to exercise your creative muscles to bring a little brightness into your home as the season continues to transition.

Kiana Underwood of Tulipina created the beautiful arrangement below from leftovers in her San Francisco garden (yes, those are tomatoes!), leaves from her yard and a few choice flowers. You can recreate a similar one with cuttings from your surroundings and some seasonal mums from the grocery. If youre a city dweller, substitute eucalyptus if fall foliage isnt available and look for rich, autumn-toned flowers to add to the mix.

Hop over here to see how Kiana built her arrangement layer by layer. Its a great flower arranging how-to for your entertaining repertoire!

Photography above & below by Nathan Underwood



WINNER WINNER + Articles Black Friday Deals Vintage Revivals

Hey guys! Man what a giveaway right??! ANYTHING on Articles site!??!

Daaaannnnngggggg Gina.

I absolutely love Article and I am so excited for the winner!!

This is the couch that is showing up at Lindsey Dopps house! (Lindsey you have 24 hours to respond to my IG message!) Its the Sven in Pacific Blue, isnt it awesome!?

Now if your name isnt Lindsey I bet youre pretty bummed right now, but for the next week Article is running their Black Friday sale and really, doesnt that make us all winners? (Insert group hug)

Loads of my favorites are on sale, like the Triplo sofa we used in my Mother In Laws.


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