freebies :: iPhone template 9 + giveaway!

Happy Friday!

We have a special treat today. Not only are we giving away our second free printable template for August, we are also giving away one free Incase clear phone case that can be used with our templates. All you have to do is comment below with what types of designs you would like to see on our templates in the future and we will randomly select one person to receive a free clear case! Just make sure we have a way to contact you (may need to include your email address in your comment, if your email is not included in your google profile). We will choose a winner on Friday, September 7th. Good luck!

This template fits perfectly in the Incase case.

UPDATE: The giveaway is now closed. Thanks for the suggestions everyone! Congrats to Anna Stubbs, we will be sending over your iPhone case soon!


question :: what inspires you?

Here are a few of my inspirations:

Swiss Miss for her great life advice. She has taught me that its okay to take risks, to love your family more than your work, and that it is possible to have a work/life balance and still be successful. Watch this video to learn from her.

Apple for proving that minimalist design works. We always try so hard to "design" things, but if we step back and really think about what is needed and how to provide that as simply as possible, we will naturally arrive at the best answer.

Anthropologie for demonstrating that things should not match. This has been so difficult for me. I was a chronic matcher, but Anthropologie has opened my world up. Instead of working with matching items, I now work with coordinating things. It is almost like a weight has been lifted off my shoulders, I am breaking my own rules and loving it.

Now that you an idea of what inspires me, I would love to hear about what inspires you?


saw this here:: Lost & Found and Homeless

While here in Hong Kong, we were shopping at The One shopping center and came across this store on the 8th floor. When I first saw the name of the store, I thought it was showing the location of the actual lost and found. Like where you go to find things when you lose them, so I was surprised to find this store when I got up there. This whole store was like the apartment section of Urban Outfitters! There were all kinds of unique, fun items and home goods. The lighting and furniture was all very modern, and I probably would have left the store with a lot more if I didn't have to consider the flight home. These are the things I thought were photo worthy.

This particular store was two stores in one. In the back of the store was Homeless. I assume they are the same company, because they were sharing one space. Here are some of my favorites from Homeless. They are mainly photos of unique lighting.

I wish we had stores like this in California. There are plenty of online shops like this, and modern furniture and lighting places, but this has it all in one! I'm sure they exist some where in the U.S. but I don't know of any in the Bay Area. If anyone can think of any, please let me know.


a snippet of inspiration :: super fonts

Check out this amazing designer I came across yesterday! He takes fonts and uses them to create super heros. I think he did a great job matching the fonts to the characters.

Below are a few of my favorites, but you can check them all out here.


A snippet of inspiration:: wallpaper

I'm in Hong Kong right now visiting Jon's family and today we went to visit The Peak. I'm not going to post any pictures of the amazing views because you can find that anywhere online, but I found some fun stuff in one of malls at The Peak. They had some really cool wallpaper on the blank walls. This wallpaper was made to look like balconies from the popular sky scraper apartments that you see all over Hong Kong. It's amazing how realistic it looks in a photo!
Here is zoomed out photo for a better perspective.


round up :: these end tables

I have been looking for an end table for my living room for a while now. I want something that looks great, is functional, and can stand up to a toddler.

Here are some awesome end tables I came across:

Let me start with this gorgeous set from Israeli designer Hilla Shamia. She takes a whole tree trunk, adds some molten aluminum and ends up with these amazing tables.

This is one of my favorites. I found it on inmod.com and if I wasn't on a budget, I would absolutely get this one for $546.00 (that's after the 30% discount). It comes in different colors and finishes and they have a whole collection of tables in this style. Love it!

This set is actually really similar to the pricey one above, but is a steal at $80 for 2 nesting tables. It can be found at Ikea and comes in white or black-brown online, but I think some stores might still have it in the birch color as well.

This table is totally simple and that's what makes it awesome. It is just a block of wood that can be used as a table or a stool.

I couldn't resist including this one from Ikea. It is actually a kitchen cart, but I think it can work great as an end table. It's narrow and can fit in tight spaces and has wheels so you can easily move it around the room. And, I just love the three shelves. I can see a thin throw blanket at the bottom, some books and remotes in the middle and drinks on top. And it's only $50!


affordable art :: modular wall art

I got of bunch of new ideas from this year's Ikea catalog but this is one of my favorite pages. Another affordable art idea! I've seen this done several times with paint chips, but as a set it has a much bigger impact! And why limit yourself to paint chips? This could work with photos, magazines, etc.

Modular art is perfect way to make affordable art, because printing large scale is very expensive, but printing a lot of smaller squares makes it much more affordable and easier to DIY. Most of us don't have large scale printers at home (although I've always wanted one).

I think I've mentioned Ixxi before. This type of modular art would give the same feeling as the Ikea photo above, but you can personalize each square. Ixxi sells their x's and strips as sets, so you can print your own squares, if you prefer, and use the X's to connect them. I love this idea because it means being able to go as big as you want!


DIY :: succulent centerpeice

For the last year I have been going through hundreds of baby food jars. Every time I rinse one out and get ready to throw it into the recycling bin I feel like I'm wasting these adorable little jars. So the other day I decided to do something with them. I love the look of flowers in a mason jar and thought I would incorporate that concept but in a much smaller scale.

I went to Home Depot and bought some tiny succulents (the smallest they had).

I grabbed my jars and made sure that the stickers were completely off and the were perfectly clean.

And, I just carefully placed the succulents in. Be sure to loosen up the roots a bit and you might need to add a little more soil (but don't pack it too tight). And that's it! You made a 2 minute center piece and are reusing and saving the world at the same time!


a snippet of inspiration :: owls

I saw this tank top at Anthropologie the other day. Aren't' these owls great! The top looks more like art than clothing. It's printed on chiffon and there is a sparrow version of this tank also, but I prefer the owls. Find it at Anthropologie.

The tank top reminded me of this wallpaper by Mini Empire. Wouldn't it be great in a kids room? Maybe as an accent wall...


i love...my favorite apps

I am addicted to my iPhone! It helps me be organized, keeps me up to date on what is happening in the world, helps me get things done, helps me parent, motivates me to be creative, etc., etc., etc.

Here is a collection of my very favorite apps.

Shopping: Amazon.com mobile app
Why I love this: I can literally make a purchase while stopped at a red light. The flow is super fast and if you already have your credit card info saved, it takes less than 30 seconds to make a purchase.

Camera: Camera genius
Why I love this: Anti-shake, rapid succession and a timer are just a few of the hundreds of features of this amazing app. Added bonus is that it gives you tips on how to be a better photographer.

Family scheduling: Cozi Family Organizer
Why I love this: Great family organizer that links everyone together. Included calendar, shopping lists and to do lists that can be shared of kept private.

To do list:
Why l love this: Designs by Swiss Miss, this is simplicity at its best. Clear and simple to do list interface. Add what you need to do, cross it off when you are done. If you don't finish your tasks move on to the next day. Perfection!

Toddler favorite: Elmo Calls
Why I love this: this has been a life saver on many occasions. Just imagine how exciting it would be to FaceTime with Elmo, or have Elmo call you to sing you a song. Especially useful during grocery shopping trips and airplane rides. 

News: Flipboard
Why I love this: It's a news feed personalized to you! Select what topics are important to you and add any social sites you are a part of. You get to browse through your own custom news feed of only what you are interested in.


affordable art :: Anthropologie catalog

Another great way to get art for your walls is to use photos from catalogs like Anthropologie. If you really stop and think about it, a ton of work goes into these catalogs. Every detail is thought out. They work hard to compose and style the perfect photo, so why throw them away! They are the perfect art for your walls and they're free! I decided to highlight Anthropologie's catalog because I love their style. I usually go for their home section but all their photos are pretty amazing. They've got an artsy flair and their products are styled in a creative way. If you run out of room on your walls, why not keep photos you like and swap out pages when you get tired of them.

These aren't printable, but here are all of Anthropologie's catalogs going all the way back to 2004!
My favorite catalog by FAR is this one from November 2010. I used two pages from this catalog and I'm glad I kept the pages I did, but I am still kicking myself to this day for not keeping the rest of it! Here are the pages I'm using right now.

This page is from November 2010 catalog. I think they were nautical holiday ornaments. Cute right?


a snippet of inspiration :: gorgeous color

I am a sucker for great color combos! I follow all of Pantone's trends so I can always be first to know what fresh new colors are coming out and I just love finding amazing color combinations in everyday life. Just check out my color board on pinterest.

The other day I was looking through my mail and saw this amazing display of color and patterns on the cover of the West Elm catalog. Before I could photograph it, my husband threw the catalog away (yes, he is in trouble), but I was able to find the same image on westelm.com.

I am in love with the color combinations and the mix and match of patterns (big trend this year!)

Designed by Jackie Ayr