ALL POSTS IN Design Trends & Styles

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Ebola…breaking up with Taylor Swift while she’s writing a new album…Stephen King novels — these are all things we should be very afraid of, but black paint!? I double-pinkie-swear-promise that black paint isn’t scary at a-l-l. Like not even a little bit. Here are all of the reasons you should think about becoming BFFs with black paint pronto:

1. Black paint is: Dramatic & Glam

Black paint has a magic way of making spaces look like they’re just dripping with glamour. There’s no way around it, black is bold, but I’ve discovered that the use of black paint can elevate a space more than almost any other color. Black painted rooms will make you think about: chic hotel suites, old Hollywood stars, elegant dinner parties. There is no way around it: black paint is just so darn glam.

TIP: If you’re not ready to dive into painting an entire room black, try painting your entire doors black. This has a similarly glam effect on a space and won’t require as much paint.


2. Black paint is: Cozy

I feel like the “dark paints make your space look small” fairytale has reached cult-like status out in the general public, and though opinions are shifting, that’s still usually the first thing a client says to me when I suggest a dark color for their space. TRUTH TIME: I’ve simply not found this old adage to be even a teeny tiny bit true. In fact, I’ve even found that dark colors like black are sometimes able to open-up spaces and make them look larger than a light or white paint would. However, I do find that dark colors seem to magically create a warmth in a space that is hard to replicate with white. There is a “coziness” that develops there with the richness of a black hue that feels surprisingly home-y and comfortable.

TIP: Dip your toe into the black paint pool by choosing a smaller room in your home (like a powder room or a guest bedroom), and start from there. If you like that “all snuggled up and cozy by the fire” feeling, you can try black in other spaces in your home from there.

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DIY Art

Whether you live in a house, an apartment, a cottage or a mcmansion, my guess is: you’ve got some giganto empty wall space you need to fill.

I’ve long been frustrated by the fact that it’s next to impossible to buy giant pieces of art. On most online sites, big art is either not available or super duper scary expensive. Why is this? Should we start a petition!? Do you want to join me in the “BIG ASS ART FOR ALL” movement? Let’s change the world!

Until then, here are 7 easy DIY art projects that will help you fill up that big empty space on your wall with some fabulousness.

DIY Art

1. Framed Wallpaper

This one is a great option if you’re ready to dip your toes into the wallpaper pool, but still want to wear your floaty wing thingys while doing it. You can hang a piece (or several pieces!) of wallpaper either vertically or horizontally, and then create a “frame” around it with painted wooden trim from the hardware store. The Hunted Interior has a great tutorial showing you how she put together her chinoiserie wallpaper panels.

DIY Art

2. Washi Tape Art

If you’ve not yet discovered the magic of washi tape, BREAKING: washi tape is seriously amazing! Washi tape is sort of like masking tape, but it’s made of rice paper so the texture is much different. This is a great abstract art DIY for anyone that’s gun shy about painting. You can purchase a large canvas to fit the size of the space you are trying to fill, as well as a variety of colors of washi tape. Then you just go crazy, crisscrossing lines until you have something you dig. Hop over to Sketch42blog to get step-by-step instructions on this one.

DIY Art

3. Knotted Wall Hanging

I love me some woven wall hangings and also some macrame wall hangings, but I don’t know how to do either. So a few weeks ago I decided to tackle my own big space dilemma by creating a “knotted” wall hanging. Basically I bought a bunch of yarn in the same off white color, but in all different textures. I also purchased a big branch at a floral supply store. Then I got to work making all sorts of fun knots, braids, tassels and tie offs. I knew my Girl Scout training would pay off one day. This one is super duper easy, and I included all of the directions over on vintagedesign.me.

DIY Art

4. Juju Hat

A Juju hat is not, in fact, a hat covered in jujubes candy, but actually a beautiful African headdress. Several years ago these gorgeous feather numbers started showing up in design mags and blogs, but the problem was, most of them cost 11 bazillion dollars. Lucky for us, enterprising bloggers started scheming up their own Juju Hat DIYs and Love Meagan has a great one for you to peep. You’ll need feathers, a glue gun, some rug canvas and scissors. You can do this…I believe in you.

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D-Happ readers, please welcome our newest contributor — Erica Reitman. You may remember Erica from a recent profile we did on her. She is an interior designer with a definite point of view (she’s no nonsense, fun and full of real-world design advice and tips). Check out Erica’s column every Thursday right here. Erica, the team is thrilled to have you. — Grant Dudley

In the hierarchy of go to apps on my phone that I lean on to distract myself from:

  • boring phone calls
  • boring meetings
  • boring commutes
  • boring dates (ok, kidding about that one..mostly)

Instagram has lately been at the top of my list.

This photography based social network is all eye candy all the time, and if you haven’t yet discovered it, it’s time to dive in with ten inspiring, inventive, out-of-the-box, creative interior designers you can follow to get your home feed buzzing with designer-y goodness.

1. @BenjaminVandiver

This Nashville based designer creates spaces that are so chic, they’ll burn your eyes out. He manages to combine classic style, with vintage vibes, and a completely modern, fresh take. His design style is like ice cream — it’s hard to pick a favorite flavor, because they all taste so damn good. See more of Benjamin’s work here.

2. @HouseofBrinson

Husband and wife photographer/stylist team Susan and William Brinson document the renovation of their historical home Stonyford Estate, as well as all of the wonderful guests, delicious meals and creative projects they take on. Their two adorable pups, Nero and Sugar, also often make cameos in the drool-worthy photos of their daily life in upstate New York. Read more about their adventures on their blog House of Brinson.

3.@AmberInteriors

Los Angeles based designer Amber Lewis is a pattern-mixing ninja, with her own chic online “shoppe” where you can purchase gorgeous pillows, rugs and accessories. Her style leans toward the eclectic, Moroccan flea market, road trip cool tip, with bright colors, textures and inspiring posts on how to kick life in the ass sprinkled in. Amber shares tips on the daily over on her blog.

4. @KellyWearstler

Kelly Wearstler, or “K Dubs” as I like to call her, is the reigning queen of in your face, grab you by the lapels and kiss you open mouthed, bold interior design. She is the master of making 70s era design (and other eras) look totally new and chic, mixes graphic patterns like a boss, and her vintage furniture finds are the stuff that dreams are made of. Get even more inspiration from Kelly on her blog My Vibe, My Life.

5. @JustinaBlakeney

If you’re not sure what a “jungalow” is, it’s time to study up on Justina Blakeney’s Instagram feed. Justina has pioneered this relaxed, boho, totally unique interior design approach that incorporates bold, contrasting textures and patterns, lots of lush plants and natural materials, and a comfortable, casual vibe. She also features daily #FaceTheFoliage works of art, which are portraits she creates with flowers and leaves. Check out Justina’s own Jungalow on her blog.

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BRIANA: It seems like we’ve had our eye on agate for a long time, but it’s been even bigger in 2014. It’s been cropping up in kitchen counters and is prominently featured in Target’s Threshold Fall 2014 collection (seen here). So, what do you think of the agate trend? Do you think it rocks or does it leave you stone cold?

Do you like the agate decor trend? Vote now on HGTV's Design Happens blog!

Target Threshold Agate Coasters and Agate Trays (available Sept. 7 – Oct. 16)

MARIEL: Agate rocks! (Ahem.) Seriously, I’m digging this trend. I’m not sure I would go this far…

Do you like the agate decor trend? Vote now on HGTV's Design Happens blog!

Credit: Photography by Eurotech Cabinetry, Inc

but I’m coveting the agate accents on this starburst chandelier.

Do you like the agate decor trend? Vote now on HGTV's Design Happens blog!

Emporium Home Agate Burst Chandelier

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Gallery walls are all the rage right now, and for good reason:  you can have completely unmatched pieces of art but make them work together with a common theme. Choosing a color, texture or pattern to be the inspiration for your wall lets you loosen the “rules.” The tough part about those galleries, though, is actually figuring out what works — and what doesn’t. To help you out, we’ve come up with our top tips for creating a gallery wall. Once you’re ready to test out your ideas, upload your pieces to Shutterfly’s Design-a-Wall virtual tool to see what they look like together before you poke a million holes in your wall.

Tip #1: Choose Any Wall

A gallery wall doesn’t have to be limited to a foyer or living room. Choose walls that are normally bare, such as a staircase wall. HGTV’s John Colaneri and Anthony Carrino hung knicknacks on a bold red wall for an instant upgrade.

Staircase Gallery Wall

Tip #2: Add Personal Touches

Create a custom look by arranging your favorite photographs or souvenirs from your travel experiences in shadow boxes . Bonus: This idea serves double duty as a storage solution.

Vintage Shadow Box Gallery Wall

Tip #3: Pick Unexpected Items

A gallery wall doesn’t just have to be framed pieces of art. This wall of hollowed out, cloth-covered books was hung with upholstery nails in each book’s four corners.

Book Gallery Wall

Tip #4: Placement, Placement, Placement

Once you’ve chosen all your pieces, it’s time to think of placement. This is especially important when you’re creating a gallery wall above furniture. Be sure not to hang pieces too low or high — a good rule of thumb is eight inches between the base of the frame and top of the furniture piece, according to Jen Bekman, founder of the popular online art shop, 20×200.

Gallery Wall

Tip #5: Be Fearless

A gallery wall is your opportunity to express your passions. So, have fun and don’t worry about going a little crazy. Mixing up your gallery wall with your personal treasures will make your house feel like home.

Electic Gallery Wall

What are some of your tips for creating the perfect gallery wall?

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As an experienced traveler, I never tire of the map and globe decor trend. Every time I go to an antique store, I scour through the bin of old maps to see if I can find any that have some significance to me or anyone I know. For me, maps offer up memories that found artwork just can’t. I look at South America and instantly think of my Chilean backpacking trip to Santiago, the Andes Mountains and Valparaiso last year. South Carolina reminds me of my time at College of Charleston and my first year away from home. Give me a world map and I’ll drift into a land of nostalgia.

Mood Board Monday: MapsTop, L to R: Kara’s Party Ideas, HGTV.com | Middle, L to R: Wendy’s Lookbook, The Hunted Interior | Bottom, L to R: HGTV.com, from HGTV MagazineLingered Upon

Come back every Monday for an inspirational mood board. Miss a day? See all the posts here.

DIY Map Crafts From HGTV.com:

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Watercolor motifs are coming back in a big way. This trend of applying watercolor decor in the home can be used in many different ways and applications, and can give off two completely separate moods. On one note watercolor motifs can be used to give any room that fun and exciting vibe (while adding a pop of color). On another note “watercolor designs are a great way to add a soft and feminine influence to any room either indoors or outside” suggests Nancy Fire, Creative Director for HGTV HOME.

PLUS: HGTV’S AUGUST COLOR OF THE MONTH >>

Watercolor designs can also add a sense of handcraft and bring a natural aspect back into your home. Whether applying watercolor wallpaper to your walls or giving your floors a vibrant addition with a motif rug, the options are endless. Another unique way to apply this trend to any room is to add it on the ceiling, giving it the unexpected attention it deserves. Then there is the need for accessorizing; using bedding, pillows, curtains, paintings and beyond. Check out the inspirational images below for your home.

Image1
Credit:  Pinterest

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In the June issue of HGTV Magazine, one article advised readers to check their closets for design inspiration. The logic behind this advice is that whatever hues dominate your wardrobe are the ones that make you most happy, therefore you should use them when decorating. I couldn’t help but think, What about the trendy pieces I bought for summer? Those are serious outliers in my closet. Then I had another thought: As Trevor mentioned earlier this summer, throw pillows are the easiest way to change up home decor. So, why not use trend-inspired pillows to spice up our couches just as much as we did our summer wardrobes? If you’d like to give this idea a try, here are 6 throw pillows inspired by summer fashion trends.

Shirt: Ohne Titel, Pillow: HGTV

Geometric Patterns
Loud patterns ranging from floral to geometric are making strong statements across runways and streets alike. Inspired by this summer trend, add some punch to your decor with a bold-patterned pillow.

Shirt Dress: Joie, Pillow: Linda Woods

Chambray
Material that was once used for men’s work shirts is now on trend for both men and women. In your home, different shades of chambray can give off very different looks. Create a rustic look with dark chambray and a traditional feel with light. Or, for a more eclectic touch, try a chambray ikat pillow like this one designed by Linda Woods.

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We are all about bringing your outdated spaces current to the modern age. We want you to love your surroundings and we strive to help you make that happen. You know this about us.

When we see orange shag carpet? Our take: “Rip it out!” Old-school floral wallpaper hanging in the bedroom? “Start scraping!” Those pastel-colored kitchen appliances from the 1970′s? “Um, no.”

So, that’s our usual stance at HGTV. But then, THEN — CNN.com introduced us (well, me) to “Time Capsule Houses.” And friends, they’re glorious. They’re so bad, and so wrong — that they’re wonderful. And apparently, there’s a market for them.

“Homes stuck in another century might seem like they’d be difficult to sell,” says CNN’s Henry Hanks. “But some buyers are interested in ‘time capsule houses’ — especially those built in the middle of the 20th century.”

Time Capsule Houses

A home in Kenthorst, Pa. built in 1965.

Time Capsule Houses

A well-maintained mid-century kitchen

Time Capsule Houses

Photos Courtesy CNN.com

My fellow blogger, Liz, pointed out that there’s an actual “retro reno” movement going on out there. Places like Retro Renovation will help you remodel and decorate your home in mid-century and vintage style.

What say you? Can you appreciate this resistance to modernize? Heck, are you someone who would actually purchase one of these homes? Let me know what you think.

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Meg's pressed botanical heart art

This week on HGTV Handmade, I brought inside beautiful leaves from the ferns in my backyard to create DIY heart art, and this got me all into the botanicals-as-decor trend.

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Pressed botanicals are a classic form of decor with so many ways to put your own spin on it. Let’s see how people are customizing their botanicals to see if it’ll spark more ideas!

botanical apothocary jars

Hello Lidy created really rad botanical apothecary jars that leave quite an impact when shown as a collection.

3D flower wallpaper

I went crazy for this rad 3D Flower Wallpaper installation when I first blogged about it on CRAFT in 2011. Created by Front, a Swedish designer, this living install is so lovely for your home as decor, or as a temporary botanical-inspired photo booth back-drop when you have a garden party.

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Illuminated driftwood centerpiece-1

I just returned from the beach where it was all seashell accents, palm prints and driftwood decor. I’m back home now, but can’t let the summer end just because vacation is over. To keep the dreamy summer look coming, here are some of my favorite driftwood projects.

illuminated driftwood centerpiece

I’ve done a few driftwood projects in the past, and in yesterday’s video for HGTV Handmade, I show you how to make an easy illuminated driftwood centerpiece for your summer entertaining. Add some shells and a Mexican blanket as a tablecloth, and you have a whole tablescape that brings bohemian summer vibes to the party.

driftwood wall garden

Driftwood is really such an easy material to work with, and can easily be hung on the wall. In this video on my channel, Meg Allan Cole Crafts, or MACC, I created a simple summer driftwood wall garden using air plants.

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You all love the nautical look just as much as some of us HGTV.com staffers. And after a beautiful and relaxing weekend on the water, I just couldn’t resist this week’s mood board pick. Happy Monday!

Mood Board Monday: SailboatsTop, L to R: HGTV.com, Coco Cake Land, The Hearabouts | Middle, L to R: Erika Layne Photography, Style Me Pretty | Bottom, L to R: HGTV.com, Jagger Photography, Colin Cowie Weddings

Come back every Monday for an inspirational mood board. Miss a day? See all the posts here.

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Summer is a season for travel. I’m not much of a go-on-vacation-to-relax kind of girl, but I do love exploring new places and taking in different cultures. Decorating my room to remind me of the places I’ve been is a fun way to keep those memories alive. Every time I see the mini Dutch shoe I bought in the Netherlands, I remember how wonderful it was to go there with my family. And I love that I can simply look at my shelf to spur those memories, rather than yanking out scrapbooks or browsing Facebook albums. (Although, who am I kidding? I definitely still do that, too!)

If you’ve gone somewhere incredible in the past or you’re heading on a new adventure this summer, consider translating your travels into decor. Whether you plan on completely revamping your home or just incorporating a few trinkets acquired on your journeys, here are 7 tips for creating a room inspired by memorable trips:

Travel Design Inspiration: Start With Souvenirs

Photo: Courtesy of Ore Studios

Start With Souvenirs
You may not have bought that magnificent hand-carved chair you saw in Morocco, but you did bring back a colorful vase. Good news: Small souvenirs are a great way to add global charm to your space without breaking the bank (or your back)! Simply placing your find on a bookshelf or coffee table will add some fun flair. But, if you’re feeling more ambitious, use the souvenir as inspiration to redesign an entire room. Pull some bold colors from the piece, like the orange on this vase, to use for accent pillows or a bright new wall color.

Travel Design Inspiration: Throw in a Textile

Photo: Courtesy of Thibaut

Throw in a Textile
Every country has a unique textile heritage, so while you’re traveling, keep an eye out for traditional fabrics! Whether you bring back a Moroccan wedding blanket, tribal rug, or French toile curtains, use them to transform a room. Like the beautiful French fabric in this space, a textile can be a lovely way to add a sense of your travels.

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Meg's moon phases on No News Is Good News

I’m over the moon for anything involving stars, constellations and the night sky. Last April, I created a DIY ‘phases of the moon’ wall art piece for No News is Good News, the newsletter that accompanies Panda Head blog. Ever since, I’ve kept my eye out for more moon moments and have found a few favorites to share.

Moon Phases clock by Glitter Mint

Form meets celestial function in these moony clocks. Glitter Mint represented with dreamy moon phases as the numbers.

Hello Bee moon clock

And Hello Bee made her whole clock face a moon. Both are so lovely.

Meg's moon night light

Make your moon glow with a DIY project that was the result of my $5 Hardware Store Challenge on HGTV Handmade.

Moon Cradle

Builder Network took their love of the moon to the next level to create a sweet cradle for their baby. How sweet! Do you think they make that for grown-ups? Or better yet — DOGS.

oreo moon phases

If none of these are you, perhaps you are more in the mood to show your love for the moon with Oreos? Via DIY

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BRIANA: Ice sculptures and swans are so ’90s. There’s a wacky new wedding trend taking hold: donkeys. Yes, you read that correctly. Donkeys. Apparently, some couples use them as transportation, to distribute goodies in their saddle bags, or just to provide ambiance and unique photo opportunities. What do you think? Do donkeys kick a wedding up a notch or would a burro upstage the bride?

Defend the Trend: Donkeys at Weddings, Yay or Bray?

Photo: Simone Van den berg/Hemera/Thinkstock

TREVOR: Is the ceremony taking place at the bottom of the Grand Canyon?

MEG ALLAN COLE: I’m glad you specified that I read this right because, it was unclear for a second. Who knew? Not this girl.

ARE YOU DOWN WITH WEDDING DONKEYS? VOTE NOW!

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BRIANA: This week’s topic comes via Jessica: the resurgence of tie-dye. It’s very summery and historically, we’ve been sweet on shibori, but what do you think of this trend? Is tie-dye decor groovy or does it make you think of a pint of Wavy Gravy?

Do you like tie-dye decor? Vote now on HGTV's Design Happens blog!

Credit: Rustic White Photography

KELLEY: I miss the old hippies who used to hang out around here, so I’m glad to see some hippie-dom coming back. I can do without the patchouli, tho.

DAVID HAYNES: Did someone say hippies?  As a veteran of more than just a few Grateful Dead shows, I will recuse myself from this thread. But before I do, if you want to witness extreme tie-dye, you might take a look at this:

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Headphones recommended. Things start to kick in at around the two-and-a-half minute mark.

TREVOR LANE: The traditional psychedelic neon-hued tie-dye reminds me of childhood vacation Bible school crafts. But this more modern take on the trend is great. I love monochrome and am obsessed with indigo. The more geometric shapes are incredibly beautiful, like the Crate and Barrel napkin in the second link. If I could do it… I would.

Do you like the tie-dye trend? Vote now on HGTV's Design Happens blog!

Crate and Barrel Shibori Blue Napkin

MEG ALLAN COLE: I support hand dyeing in all ways. I used to rock some pretty atrocious colored tie-dye in the 90′s, and those are moments we can leave in the past, but this new organic hand dye trend using muted mellow colors or bold jewel tones is just gorgeous. It gives off such a dreamy, tropical look and vibe that I am WAY into.

MORE DEBATING ABOUT TIE DYE

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Meg's dip dye pillow

There is something about the mellow, organic vibe dip-dying creates that is so lovely and oh-so-summer, to me. A deceivingly easy DIY, considering how intimidating it looks. I’ve tried my stained hands at this many times before (Re: wear gloves), and shared the in-progress process and the results on my blog, Nest. Liz touched upon this trend a few weeks ago in her Color of the Month post, so clearly we are all digging the dye right now.

Meg's dip dye lamp on Nest

This week I felt the need to share just how simple it can be to create the look over on HGTV Handmade.

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Please DO try this at home. The result is really quite dreamy and I can see this being a great addition to any couch, bedroom, or even a pop of custom color in a new dorm room.

Anthropologie's dip dye linen duvet set

Inspired by this lush and lovely dip-dye duvet set at Anthropologie, I took the project into a home textile place with a set of dip-dye pillows in a palette of blues and purple for my HGTV Handmade video.

More on Dip-Dye

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Accent Pillow Collage

Top L to R: Pottery Barn, Pencil Shavings Studio, Lonny | Middle L to R: Yossawat, Design Home, H&M | Bottom L to R: Country Living, Target, H&M

We could use up all of our effort — and budgets — on flawless furniture, but the details are what really bring a room to life. With the summer holidays and parties quickly approaching, now is the perfect time to experiment with new design ideas and tips.

For this warm weather season, many designers are harnessing the impact power of accent pillows. Whether it is a coordinated look, or an eclectic mix of different styles, the beauty of this trend is that you can continuously change the mood and feel of a room by simply switching out a few inexpensive cushion covers.

BONUS: CHECK OUT 500+ LIVING ROOM INSPIRATION IDEAS>>

Try mixing a nautical inspired pillow with a contrasting graphic stripe for a crisp yet bold statement. Or create a more subtle tone with vintage embroidered pieces with a calm color palette. The possibilities are endless with this trend — and they will no doubt impress at all of your summer parties.

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watermelon tote bag

I am so ready for summer I can smell the suntan lotion, feel the sand between my toes, and hear the waves crashing now (or is that my sound machine that helps me sleep?). I’ve been seeing watermelon everywhere right now in fashion and home decor and it’s beckoning a long, chill summer season perfect for BBQ’s and pool days. This trend is in tandem with the pineapple moment that is happening right now, and the combo is oh-so-refreshing! Let’s see what else bloggers and YouTubers are creating with citrus across the ole’ inter-web. Madame Citron hand-dyed this tote bag to be watermelon fresh and it’s adorable.

watermelon salad

Are these projects making you hungry? Then let’s make this delicious-looking dish seen on Food 52.

watermelon shoes

The Hey Hey Hey painted a pair of slip-ons to look like the fruit and they are uber-cute.

More Adorbs Watermelon Ideas

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BRIANA: Move over, duck face — there’s a new craze sweeping Instagram called the “shelfie.” Apparently, tastemakers everywhere are taking pictures of artfully-arranged shelves and posting them to social media with the hashtag. What do you think of the trend? Is it a fun way to share your personal style or does showing off your possessions make you seem shelf-ish?

shelfie trend

Design: Brian Patrick Flynn | Photo: Rustic White Photography

JESSICA: I’m a hoarder and lacking in shelf space (read: furniture), so looking at people’s neatly organized shelves is very relaxing.

KAYLA: I’m one of those people that rearranges my bookshelves once a month, so seeing people’s “shelfies”  gives me ideas for placement. (I had no idea that was a thing, though.)

DAVID HAYNES: I’m with Kayla. I’m all for seeing what other people are doing along these lines and I will happily cherry-pick and plagiarize their ideas. However, I’m more the type in search of the Holy Grail of shelf arrangement, so once I have a shelving strategy and display theme I’m happy with, it’s likely to stay that way to the end of time.

MARIEL CLARK: Here’s a trend I can get behind. I love being inspired by real-life design and bookshelves are such a great reflection of individual personality and style. I probably won’t share my own “shelfie” right now since mine is a study in juice boxes, train sets and baby blocks. But I will eagerly flip through others’ perfectly arranged shelves and dream of one day having just the right bookends that will pull the entire shelf — no, the entire room — together.

FARIMA: I love a well-decorated shelf, and I truly think it takes talent to design one perfectly. Saying that, the closest thing I have to a bookshelf is an electric blue China cabinet that I’ve decorated minimally because I hate dusting!

MORE SHOUTING ABOUT SHELFIES

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