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Real Talk: Life Without The Web

Could you live without the web? How long could you totally unplug? Do you want to? Do you long for the days before email and social networking? Recently on Facebook a friend (thanks, Alex!) shared an article that she read over at Slate written by By James Sturm called Life Without The Web. It’s about the resolve of one man to sign off for four months to see how it changes his life — work, family, etc.

Real Talk: Life Without The Web

I think most of us can relate to James when he confessed, “The question I’ve been wrestling with lately is whether it’s all going by so fast because…of the way I’ve been living my life. Specifically, I’ve started to wonder whether that feeling might be connected to all the time I spend online. Too often I sit down to dash off a quick e-mail and before I know it an hour or more has gone by.” I found his perspective interesting, you may too — you can hop over here to read it and then pop back to leave your impressions below because I think as a community we could have a pretty neat discussion about it today if you’d like. I wonder if you can relate to any of his “issues” with being online a lot.

Perhaps you can relate to James on this point, “Over the last several years, the Internet has evolved from being a distraction to something that feels more sinister. Even when I am away from the computer I am aware that I AM AWAY FROM MY COMPUTER and am scheming about how to GET BACK ON THE COMPUTER.”

After reading the article and his resolve to completely sign offline for four months I came to this conclusion: Part of me understands James’ decision to go offline. I totally get it. But another part says it’s like anything else — it’s a self control thing, not an internet thing. If someone has an addiction to the internet they need to figure out why and how to change and then take the necessary steps. I don’t think that cold turkey will help long term because eventually he’ll be back online and then the pattern will most likely emerge all over again. I think it’s more important to learn balance and practice self control in everything we do — even healthy things can be bad for us if we over-indulge. If you remove a vice without first learning self control you will only replace the vice with something else like television and book reading. And what really is the difference – watching television and reading books can be done online so doing them offline doesn’t accomplish much.

So my questions are this: could you totally unplug for four months like James? Would you want to? Do you wish you could unplug completely long-term? Do you think self control plays a part in all of this and that the web can become an addiction turning an otherwise healthy activity into something unhealthy? How do you balance your life online with your life offline — any tips for other readers who may also be a bit frustrated by all of the time they spend plugged in?

(image: holly becker for decor8)

What are your thoughts?

Posted in real talk on April 15, 2010
decor8 great.ly shop

London Bound: Any Tips?

I have so many things to share with you today. But first I must apologize as sadly I missed Etsy Take Five Tuesday this week but don’t worry, I’ll get back on track next week. :) I’m quite busy at the moment and this will continue no doubt until the Autumn as the decorating book I’m co-authoring is completely underway – as of this week! My job, outside of writing a portion of it, is to scout locations in the US and Europe, find a fab interiors photographer in both the US and Europe, and pull together all the homes that I have currently to see where they’ll fit in the flat plan that I’m working off of. There is a lot involved but I’m ready for it — it will be published by Chronicle Books. And you, dear readers, will have to listen to me talk about it as I go along but I promise — because it’s a decorating book, at least what I speak of will be related to this blog so you can go on this little book ride with me. Okay?

Caravan

In fact, I have a lot of traveling to do as I will have meetings relating to this book (the first is in London next month) and I’ll be accompanying the photographer on shoots and styling homes so I plan to bring you with me as I hop around — my hope is that you will enjoy watching this project evolve before your eyes so that once the book is out you can then see the finished project and tell me what you think about it. I’ll ask my publisher as I go along to see what I can share and what I can’t as some things I am under contract to not disclose — but what I can share I will. For sure.

Caravan

I’ve not been assigned to such a large freelance project before but now as I embark on this journey I’m feeling quite good about it — like this will be a great start for me as I enter this new world with hopes that this book will lead to another and another… I’ve always wanted decor8 to live off of the web as well as online – to be web-based and coffee table-based. :) And just so you know, because there are so many show offs in this world who annoy me with their “look at me!” attitudes, I promise not to become an egotistical bore. In fact, I want to always remember my roots — where I came from as a girl who started from zero and your support and friendship is partly responsible for my book deal so if anyone out there is sitting around feeling a bit depressed about life — like what is next for you, will you find your magic carpet and if you do, will you have the courage to jump on and ride — I can tell you YES, yes, yes! I hate sounding like some self-help cheerleader but seriously, I once sat in a cubicle (not that this is bad, I liked my cubicle thank you!) and thought that perhaps I could someday do something creative and I thought about my life — the direction it was taking — and here I am today doing things that I enjoy. And look at how setting some goals and sticking to them can change a life, right?! Determination, talent and passion really are the keys to getting from step A to B and so on… so if you are good at something and sit in your chair thinking, “Yeah, some people have all the luck!” then maybe you should start thinking, “Yeah, some people have all the luck so why not me too, I’m talented!?”. Seriously. Why should I or anyone else have the things that you want — we all deserve to reach our goals.

Caravan

Next month I will travel to London for my first picture meeting where I will review photos for the book and then this summer I’ll be on the road with the photographer in both the US and parts of Europe. It will be nice to have a change of pace as I spend so much of my days online — but I’ll have plenty of time to blog still and I’m not going to neglect you — I promise! If  anything, I’ll have some fun stories to share, some shops and travel notes to write, and all of the usual fare on decor8 that you can expect — I’ll keep it up not just now but for years to come.

Caravan

This is the part where I could use some advice. I will be in London in May and want to mix a little pleasure with business because I’ve lived in Europe nearly 9 months and haven’t done much traveling so now that the weather is nice I feel that it’s time to go out and get some inspiration and enjoy some time shopping, eating and seeing some interesting exhibitions and shows. I’ll be in London for a week starting on May 13 so if you know of anything that I should definitely see/do, I’d love to know. From hotels to exhibitions, craft shows to flea markets, all of it — I’d love some advice. I’ve not been to London since 1999 so I’m a bit crusty and rusty when it comes to ideas on what to do there. And since I’m writing this book with another writer, Joanna and I will be hopping around on a shopping trip for the day and so if she doesn’t get too annoyed by my camera then I’ll be sure to share some of my favorite things with you upon my return.

Any London tips? What’s absolutely, positively not-to-miss?

(images: caravan – a shop I am definitely hitting!!!)

Posted in travel on April 15, 2010

Kris Atomic Illustration

I haven’t shared Kris Atomic in awhile and was just reminded of her the other day when my friend Laura asked if I’d ever seen her work before… Some of Kristina’s sweet art and hand-painted prints are able here in her etsy shop. If you have time today, please take a moment to browse her online portfolio which includes a lot of gorgeous illustrative work that she’s done for clients.

kris atomic

Currently living outside of London, Kristina Mordokhovitch is a freelance illustrator, photographer and blogger (I love her blog!) who graduated last year from Camberwell College of Arts with a degree in Illustration.

Kris Atomic

kris atomic

I could spend hours on her site examining the details of each one — her lines, colors, all of it appeal to me so much. And her girls! So cute! What about you? What draws you in to Kristina’s work?

(images: kris atomic)

Posted in Arts + Crafts on April 15, 2010

Inspired by Bolig Magazine

I was hopping around Facebook today to check in on some of my friends and noticed this terrific link to Bolig that Tiger posted. And then down the rabbit hole I fell into the beautiful Scandinavian interiors featured in Bolig magazine online. Here are some views into some of my favorite rooms which make me all the more excited to move into a new flat and decorate!

Bolig Inspiration

I have so many ideas for my new space that I want to execute soon — my dream is to find a flat soon enough so that I can decorate it and include it in my decorating book that will be out next spring. So the apartment search continues but I am hopeful because hey, I have to find a place sooner or later. Be positive, right?!

Bolig Inspiration

Bolig Inspiration

Aren’t these spaces so clean and lovely? If you’d like to join in on the drool fest and leave some of your thoughts below please do — I’d love to know what room you like the best and why, what elements you see that you’d like to try at home, etc.

I like the bold yellow in the kitchen above, the light wood floors (and the white ones, swoon!), the “ruler” table runner (did you spy that too?), the giraffe art, the shelf over the bed, and the shiny black smeg fridge. :)

(images: bolig magazine)

Posted in Books + Magazines, inspiration on April 15, 2010

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