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Color Inspiration

Color Inspiration

Purple Hues

September 27, 2010

Hello and happy Monday to you! It is Leslie here with September’s Color Me Pretty column. This time around I am using muted purple, cream, grey, silver and a touch of black. I was reminded of some of these colors in Holly’s post here where she discusses a décor possibility for her new home, which she moves into this week! The palette was inspired by Sibella Court’s paint line which I am sure most of you have checked out on her website. I tried using this palette loosely in a much smaller scale with a few little projects to get your creative wheels turning.

Purple Hues

I have been seeing many of these colors appearing in my catalog pile as well and, once again I can’t help but tear out images. They are clipped into my journals, stuck onto my mood board and taped on my wall for further inspiration. Today you will see images in my photographs from the Noa Noa, J.Crew, and Himla catalogs.

Purple Hues

Purple Hues

Purple Hues

Purple hues seem to dominate the flowers in my garden too, like lavender, salvia, geraniums, verbena and solanum. I plucked a few sprigs and popped them into my vintage Amethyst bottles for the series. For some of the bottles I put on a little white paper with Japanese silver tape to balance out all the purple. You could tape any patterned paper on any kind of glass vase or jar for a similar effect. It is simple and shows you do not need to spend much time or money on flowers to have a nice display for your home.

Purple Hues

Purple Hues

Purple Hues

I had fun using my watercolors to create little studies on small 2” by 3” cards. Sometimes it is nice to do really small creative steps towards a larger project, especially if you are feeling stuck or unmotivated. Like myself, when it is 95 degrees and I have no air conditioning in my studio! As I painted, stitched and glued sequins on these little cards I began to feel inspired and ready to work on the entire photo series. Do you have suggestions on how you get motivated for your creative work?

Purple Hues

Purple Hues

I hope you have enjoyed the series today and I look forward to seeing you back here next month. Take care, Leslie.

(images: leslie shewring)






Color Inspiration

Navy Stripes + Salmon

August 19, 2010

Hello friends, it is Leslie here with my latest Color Me Pretty series. This time around I got really inspired by navy, straw, salmon, a little lemon, a little wood and denim.

Navy Stripes + Salmon

These colors work well together in clothing and I found myself tearing out images from the early summer catalogs of J.Crew, Madewell and Noa Noa to include in my mood boards.

Navy Stripes + Salmon

Don’t you think clothing catalogs can be a treasure trove for ideas about color and texture? We have seen how fashion can inspire interior design projects but it can also inspire much smaller projects, like how you wrap a present or combine papers for your next collage.

Navy Stripes + Salmon

With navy it seems to be all about stripes, in fashion, on my Japanese bowls, striped ribbon from New York. I just had to paint some for you, as I like how watercolor can make stripes look even fresher, if that is possible!

Navy Stripes + Salmon

Navy Stripes + Salmon

Once I started doodling with the navy paint I had a hard time stopping and after the stripes I ended up writing with my paint brush, painting patterns on envelopes and decorating plain paper fans. I can imagine that a few hand painted fans on a wall would be really pretty. Painting fans is also a fun project with kids as my daughter and her friend loved painting their own too. I picked up the plain uncoated paper fans in LA’s Chinatown for a dollar or so each. The paper was pretty thick and a good surface for the watercolor paint.

Navy Stripes + Salmon

Some of my stripe patterns got cut into squares and made into stapled quilts for my corkboard. I saw pieces of paper stapled together like this at an Anthropologie store near my home. I thought it was a great idea to show you as you could make something similar for your walls or for a card with little bits of paper or with photographs.

Navy Stripes + Salmon

Navy Stripes + Salmon

Navy Stripes + Salmon

Finally, I wanted to show you how these colors even inspire my desk. I love looking at ever changing little boxes and rolls of tapes. The wooden dispensers from Uguisu are a constant, as is the beautiful card-file from lovelydesign and the artwork. I framed a series of small prints by Catherine Campbell of My Folk Lover together to form a grid so that I could view all of them all of the time.

Navy Stripes + Salmon

I hope you found something today that may inspire a creative project for you. Please enjoy the rest of August and I will see you back here next month. – Leslie

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Psst: If you’d like to see more lovely inspirations from Leslie and her Color Me Pretty column, please refer to this page to view gorgeous color palettes to inspire you today!

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Like what you see? If you’d like to learn how to create your own moodboards and learn how to style your own photos for your blog, Leslie is co-teaching Blogging Your Way, an online self-paced class along with me next month for 4 weeks where you will learn all of this and more. To enroll (hurry space is limited!), you may click here. Class is for all levels and you DO NOT need a blog to participate in this class  but it would be helpful if you started one during the class so you can start applying your newfound education! :)

(images: leslie shewring)






Color Inspiration

Neon Pink

July 30, 2010

Hello Friends, it is Leslie here for July’s Color Me Pretty series. This time around I decided to explore black, white, silver, grey and yes, neon pink. I do not think I have gone totally eighties on you. I have just been a little obsessed with this color combination since I saw the cover of Inside Out magazine last month.

Neon Pink

This magazine inspired this mood board below… and this series today!

Neon Pink

You can sneak a little neon pink into a neutral interior and have it feel really fresh and summery with a simple pillow as an accent as shown below.

Neon Pink

Of course it is a trendy color, which is what makes it so fun, just use it in small dosages! Handwriting, beads and tape were also brought into the mix this time around. I hope you enjoy what I have put together for you.

Neon Pink

I love photographing chalkboard menus when I travel in Europe. It is more about the handwriting, less about the menu. Chalkboards are fun in the home and I like the idea of sketches or poems written on them, maybe even a fancy frame around their edge. Even if you are nervous about showcasing your own handwriting, go for it. That is what the eraser is for!

Neon Pink

Neon Pink

I have been sticking Rob Ryan’s tape on everything. As most of you know, tape can instantly personalize a plain journal or a blank card.

Neon Pink

On my mood board I combined some Japanese tape with a little neon pink stitching to make a card. I also combined Rob Ryan’s tape with some Japanese tape to make another card.

Neon Pink

Recycle tip: An empty food can is painted white and then spruced up further with a little note and some ribbon to hold a plant for a gift.

Neon Pink

Craft Idea: I tried using stencils this month as well –to go along with my eighties investigation because weren’t stenciled walls big back then in the US? Do you remember the do it yourself grapevine stencil kits? Well, stencil kits are back better then ever! I loved using the kits by Ed Roth of Stencil 1. Lotta Jansdotter makes some nice larger scale stencils that I tried too. You can also check out Lena Corwin’s chapter on stenciling in her book “Printing By Hand”.

Neon Pink

I used stencils from both Stencil 1 and Lotta Jansdotter to create images on some small square canvases. I realize I am not the best stencil student as I like to paint myself but it was fun to have a guide and the results were very fast. I did not have a stencil brush, which I think I will use next time around. I especially liked making some cards for my mood board collection on heavy paper using the stencils.

Have you tried using stencils? Any tips you want to share with us beginners?

Thank you for joining me here and I will see you again next month with a Color Me Pretty series for August! If you would like to see previous CMP columns please click here. Bye!

(images: leslie shewring)






Color Inspiration, Objects

Camp Cirrus

July 1, 2010

If you love Scandinavian design and bold brights then the new Swedish design company Camp Cirrus may just be what you need to inspire you and thoughts of redecorating today! Decorating is all I think about lately since we have two flats that look very promising and both are beautiful… if we end up moving into one of them I will be the happiest woman on the planet because then I can decorate it! Weeee! I have so many ideas for my next place. I can’t wait to see where we ultimately end up moving but it looks like September or October I will have a permanent home. Then the things I write about can expand into some of my own home projects which I’m dying to share more of since I’d like to add new features to decor8. Okay… I digress. Now back to Camp Cirrus in Sweden. These bold patterns would be great on a patio or in the kitchen, wouldn’t they? They do look so very Swedish to me…

Camp Cirrus

Camp Cirrus

Camp Cirrus

Camp Cirrus

Camp Cirrus

Camp Cirrus

Camp Cirrus

This is their first collection shown above and it includes textile “jars” for storage, pillow covers, trays, totes and small bags. The pillow covers and bags are hand printed and their design is geared around making beautiful things that are also functional and make people happy. I like that!

(images: camp cirrus)






Color Inspiration

Pink, Green + Purple

June 21, 2010

Hello Friends, it is Leslie here with another Color Me Pretty series – the June edition. This time around I played with fruity pinks and purples along with a little chartreuse. Since summer is here for some of us why not liven things up!

Pink, Green + Purple

In this collection I attached some goodies to a manila folder inspired by Holly’s post here. The cute card of the girl’s head is by Fifi Mandirac who has a fun and color inspiring line. You can also check out more about her in this post with glimpses of her home in Paris. The other pretty floral card is by Elum Designs.

Pink, Green + Purple

Pink, Green + Purple

Pink, Green + Purple

Pink, Green + Purple

My daughter and I have been mailing out lots of collage work to her grandma’s and aunties lately. It is a fun project for her and keeps her busy while Mommy is trying to work. We use semi-transparent glassine envelopes so that her artwork shows through and then we continue collage on the exterior of the envelope. The little works of love have the potential to bring a smile or at least a glance of interest to those who see them along the way to their final destinations. She loves going to the post office or finding a mailbox to drop her treasures into and I love witnessing her process.

Pink, Green + Purple

Pink, Green + Purple

Pink, Green + Purple

I am still obsessed with roses after my visit to Rose Story Farm last month. All the fragrant varieties are available right now at the flower markets and I have a hard time resisting! In the bouquets some of the roses are David Austen’s Phoebe rose which has a strong sweet scent and Yves Piaget, which also smells divine. Both would work well for a special occasion bouquet.

Pink, Green + Purple

Pink, Green + Purple

Pink, Green + Purple

I hope you have enjoyed this series today, a fresh way to kick off a Monday morning! I look forward to seeing you back here with a few more posts tomorrow and Wednesday while Holly is working on her project. Until then, take care. – Leslie

(images: leslie shewring)






Color Inspiration

Mediterranean Blue, Red + White

May 26, 2010

Hello Friends! It is Leslie here with this month’s Color Me Pretty. For some reason I can’t stop thinking about blue. Maybe it’s all the denim in fashion or maybe it’s my daydreams of exotic vacation spots like Marrakesh or Ibiza. Needless to say blue is on my mind and I cannot help but pair it with a little strawberry red. This traditional mix can still be fresh for your creative projects big or small. I do hope you enjoy this series.

Mediterranean Blue, Red + White

I had fun gathering all my blue vintage stamps together and arranging them on my scanner to make an interesting piece for hanging on the wall or for use in a paper craft. Quickly scanning and printing out the image was easy and would be fun with any collection of stamps or tickets. I may use my stamp scans to create a cover for my travel journal.

Mediterranean Blue, Red + White

Mediterranean Blue, Red + White

Mediterranean Blue, Red + White

Mediterranean Blue, Red + White

Mediterranean Blue, Red + White

Mediterranean Blue, Red + White

Mediterranean Blue, Red + White

Mediterranean Blue, Red + White

I do not have a lot of red in my home but I love adding simple dabs of it once in a while. Like a red vase on white tile or red stitching on linen tea towels. It is hard to resist the color of strawberry jam with warm scones or a fresh bowl of berries on a white tablecloth. Red gingham is charming too and speaks about summer picnics like nothing else.

Outdoors, even the most basic red geraniums look fabulous with classic Mediterranean blue and loads of white. I also love using a little red in small art projects like collage and wrapping.

What about you? Do you use red in big bold ways or do you tend to use it on a much smaller scale like me?

I really loved creating this column for you and I hope you have enjoyed it. I will see you back soon. Until then, take care and enjoy the rest of May. — Leslie

(images: leslie shewring)






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