Hopeful Things

December 15, 2008

Let’s talk about HOPE for a moment, okay? I know, not a topic frequently discussed on design and decorating blogs but it is on a lot of people’s minds, agree? I noticed a ‘hope’ theme on lots of products lately… what do you think has inspired it?

{a.hope print by Please Be Still, b. “hope bird” from Naokos Stoop, c. give hope tote from Melissa Vest, d. hope and egg necklace by Nina Bagley, e. winter hope necklace also by Nina Bagley and f. hope earrings from Eliwill.}

I think that the #1 reason hope is a recurring ‘theme’ right now is because so many are discouraged due to the economy. None are without impact even in the smallest way. You may have kept your job but perhaps your neighbor is absolutely depressed because he lost his and this impacts you because your interactions in the hallway with him aren’t positive anymore. He was always in such a good mood. Now he is quiet and down. This affects you, every interaction has some mark on our day I believe, whether positive or negative.

{a. quilt ornament from Wordz of Life, b. hope necklace from Lotus Jewelry Studio, c. hope posy pin by Tracy B Designs, d. hope necklace by Bijou Girl Designs. e. hope cards from Leigh Wells and f. vintage toy blocks from Sparkkle Jar.}

I have been reading a lot of blogs and boards on various websites and many are complaining, upset, fearful, even downright angry over their situation, how the economy is or may affect their business, etc. I want to encourage you to be hopeful and focused if you are not feeling so hot right now. Keep working towards your goals and the future that you want for yourself and your family. One thing my parents always taught me through their actions was to keep my eyes on the ball. No matter what distraction may come it’s good to keep looking ahead and to not waver or to use your energy to focus on the negative. Hope is something that can help keep you positive, grounded, and forward moving. So many things in our life that we fear never pan out anyway, so it’s a waste of time to stress over what we have no control over. Right?

{hope wall hoop by Wallwork}

{1. hoping tomorrow print by Pretty Little Thieves, 2. celebration of hope original collage from Brush With Imagination, 3. hopes and dreams print by My Paper Doll, 4. Hopeful Times photo by Unravelling and 5. hopes and dreams print by Ashley G.}

Do you like winter? I’m a girl who once disliked it very much but now snow, a warm fire, and the magical feeling that this season brings is one I look forward to now. I love this period of rest, when nature goes inward, bears huddle in their dens (imagine little Zzzz’s over their furry heads and full tummies), and trees become glistening ice sculptures. December, especially the last two weeks of the year, is one my favorite times of the year because it forces everyone to reflect, slow down a little, and those final weeks gives me this great big feeling of hope for what may come in the year ahead. I think it’s time we all pause and reflect on this, don’t you agree? Remember that it’s our time to strengthen, renew, hope, and look ahead. Remember that things always get worse before they get better but they DO eventually get better. In the process we can become stronger in our core through endurance and also by being positive and allowing it to bring out good qualities in ourselves and others.

We all need hope but only when we have the courage to do positive things can we turn hopes into reality. So what are you hoping to do in 2009? What do you H O P E for? Have you found any products or projects on the web that relate to hope in some way and do you find them inspiring? What have you found (feel free to place your links in the comments section below. If your links are long, please use tinyurl.com).

(images linked to their sources above)


  • Reply Giselle December 15, 2008 at 1:11 pm

    Henry Road – Hope pillow for St Judes – http://shop.stjude.org/GiftCatalog/shop.do?pID=15147

  • Reply Andee December 15, 2008 at 1:12 pm

    Holly, I don’t imagine you meant this to be a religious topic, but I can’t imagine having hope without having faith. For me, my only hope is in God. Psalm 130:7 O Israel, put your hope in the LORD, for with the LORD is unfailing love and with him is full redemption.

    If I place my hope in anything or anyone but God I am sure to be disappointed. With God we can rejoice even in times of suffering.

    Romans 5: 3-5: Not only so, but we also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out his love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom he has given us.

  • Reply vineeta December 15, 2008 at 1:27 pm

    What a fantastic and beautiful and timely post, Holly. It is always amazing& inspiring for me to come to your blog. Here in Mumbai/Bombay too, after the terror attacks too there is much need for hope.
    What would I hope for me for 2009? I’d hope for more courage to do all the things that I want to do, more discipline to follow my dreams & really make it happen. I’m standing poised at the threshold of all that I have known as a working professional & all that i want my life to be as a freelancer. And I will really hope for me to make this transition with confidence.
    I hope for all of us to know that what goes down has to come up :)

    vineetas last blog post: Rajasthan

  • Reply Madelyn @ Southern Weddings December 15, 2008 at 1:35 pm

    I love all of these images! I think surrounding ourselves with hope will help to improve people’s spirits! What a wonderful post!

    Madelyn @ Southern Weddingss last blog post: {Southern} Details: Kate + Keith

  • Reply carrie leber December 15, 2008 at 1:48 pm

    I agree – it feels like economy talk has cast a negative spell over the nation the past few months – it was even on SNL this weekend. I think if we keep our eyes on the prize and look at all the wonderful things that are happening we’ll be just fine.

    carrie lebers last blog post: Shopping Trip ~ Room Service in Chicago

  • Reply kelly December 15, 2008 at 1:51 pm

    Thank you for this! I have a lot of projects I want to focus on in the new year and it is easy to get boggled down with fear and worry.
    But you’re right — it’s not worth worrying about things you have no control over.

    kellys last blog post: A Recessionista Christmas, Pt. 5.5

  • Reply Stratos December 15, 2008 at 1:59 pm

    What an inspiring post!!!

  • Reply maisonpetite December 15, 2008 at 2:19 pm

    I hope I don’t step on anyone’s toes with what I have to say. I’m guessing that the proliferation of HOPE products are the result of Obama mania. But my hope lies in someone bigger than this universe. I totally agree when you say that “it’s a waste of time to stress over what we have no control over.” What’s and who’s inspiring me in these hard times: my Christian faith, small business owners who followed their dreams and didn’t dwell on the difficulties they might encounter, and bloggers like you who show us beauty in this crazy and angst- ridden world that we live in.

    maisonpetites last blog post: A Late Happy and Restful Weekend!

  • Reply minouette December 15, 2008 at 2:26 pm

    Dear Holly,

    I was very happy to be involved this year in a project on the theme of hope. Craftster Alteredmommy in Alberta, Canada (a cancer survivor herself), invited artists from around the world to donate a page to a altered art book on the theme of hope, to raise funds for cancer research. The story and finished product is here:


    Best wishes,

    Ele (aka minouette)

    minouettes last blog post: Giraffe pillow- Corelie

  • Reply decor8 December 15, 2008 at 2:41 pm

    Andee: No, I did not mean for this to be a religious topic (or political) but those scriptual thoughts are very nice and thank you for sharing.

    Perhaps you are all onto something… People are hopeful for many reasons, a new president in America, a better economy, and many look to God, their faith, their friends, their family, etc. for healing and strength. I think these are all really nice thoughts. Thank you for sharing them.

  • Reply ray creations December 15, 2008 at 2:45 pm

    You are absolutely right about the economic depression and so many people are loosing their jobs. Everyone sure needs some hope in such times.

  • Reply nina bagley December 15, 2008 at 5:23 pm

    a friend alerted me to the fact that two of my jewelry designs are featured here today. as one of the artists who have worked with the word “hope” (it is a common design theme of mine these days), i’ll tell you this much: i am a single mother, self employed, uninsured, living alone with my 15 1/2 year old pup. i have a brother who unexpectedly and suddenly died three years ago this january, and since then i’ve become acutely aware of the fact that i am alive, that i have this one chance to make the most of my life. yes, the economy is bad, and yes, it is having a noticable effect on my self employment as a jewelry designer and workshop instructor. what i want to say with my work is that i hold on to hope, and that is my strength. i’ve learned i cannot depend on any one thing or person other than myself to make the most out of life, and to hold hope near to my heart, deep in my soul, is what gives me renewed vision and clarity for what lies ahead. yes, i excitedly voted for obama, with much hope that this country will finally be in better hands; my own staunch republican father did as well, which surprised and thrilled me. but my theme of hope rides not on religion or politics, but simply in what i firmly believe.
    i thank you for writing this post today, as we all tuck inside for the winter months ahead (those of us who live on this side of the planet, anyway). best of the holidays to you – nina bagley

    nina bagleys last blog post: glimpses

  • Reply Nancy December 15, 2008 at 7:03 pm

    The one little hope I have right now is getting my drivers license, it’s been such a hard experience, I sometimes feel like I wasn’t meant to be a driver, but I will not give up! I need my drivers license.

    Nancys last blog post: I wish this was me

  • Reply hope December 15, 2008 at 8:25 pm

    this post is great :)

  • Reply Diana December 15, 2008 at 10:57 pm

    Hope is a wonderful sentiment. It’s the state motto of Rhode Island (where I’m from) – no one knows exactly why it was chosen in 1664, but a best guess is from a scripture passage: “hope we have as an anchor of the soul”

    In times of trouble, I think hope does allow us to anchor ourselves and pull through. :-)

    Dianas last blog post: Thanks!

  • Reply diana baur December 16, 2008 at 4:36 am

    Another great post, Holly! There is a saying in German which, roughly translated, is, ” hope is the last thing to die! ” We have to stay hopeful about the future. I think making our spaces what we want them to be, despite our financial means or lack thereof, is very important in keeping us hopeful for the future. If we love where we are, we can use the space to dream, if we can dream, it means we have hope! Maybe we can’t afford a 50 euro container of designer paint. But maybe we can afford a 13 euro container of white, which we can learn to color ourselves, in our favorite tones. Maybe we can’t afford a new bed, but maybe we can construct a headboard out of materials which are actually laying around and cost us nothing but time, imagination, and yes, a little hope.

    It is a beautiful life. I hope today that the storms in Northern and Central Italy recede, that Venice and Rome can get back to normal and out of a state of emergency, that the sun will peak through today for us all.

    I hope for good health in 2009. I hope that I can give my guests an atmosphere of comfort and creativity, that I can complete all the design and renovation projects I have lined up before my season opens, and that I can (as you mentioned in one of your last posts so eloquently) listen to my own inner voice when creating my spaces so that my little inn is honest and a reflection of who I am.

    And I hope you continue writing :)

    Holly, you give many very talented people here a voice to express what it is that in fact motivates them, in a very sweet and open way.

  • Reply ROOM design studio December 16, 2008 at 6:45 am

    The pin!! I love the pin!!

    ROOM design studios last blog post: kitschy and chic

  • Reply nyc/caribbean ragazza December 19, 2008 at 4:54 am

    What a poignant post as we close out 2008.

    I hope 2009 brings you much happiness and joy.

    nyc/caribbean ragazzas last blog post: The Grinch Who Stole Christmas!

  • Reply beth December 23, 2008 at 10:53 am

    thank you for including me.

    beths last blog post: quinn necklace

  • Reply Judith December 23, 2008 at 2:57 pm

    Holly, I’m catching up with your blog and I came across this post and it honestly brought me to tears. My husband and I are having the most difficult of times but we are not giving up because we have hope. We have hope that we will look back at these hard times and say we survived. Thank you for posting such amazing and most inspiring words. If you don’t mind I would like to read this post on Christmas eve to my family. I know it will slow things down and make us all reflect on our hope for 2009 as you said. Thanks I truly appreciate it. Have a blessed Christmas and a wonderfull hopefull 2009.

    Judiths last blog post: Happy Cyber Monday

    • Reply decor8 December 23, 2008 at 4:53 pm

      Judith this is great, I appreciate that you took the time to comment today and tell me what this post meant to you! Makes me want to keep writing.

  • Reply Lucitectural Classics January 6, 2009 at 9:17 pm

    The economy may have everyone down, but there is definitely hope about … not just hope for hope (!) … and a new President I think will have a big impact.

    Lucitectural Classicss last blog post: DIY Door Stops

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