Tuesday, September 30, 2008

PMD: Guest Post!

Today's post is from Rachel Millsop, mountain biking diva extraordinaire!   

How long have you interested in design? Ever since I was little I remember always being interested in design; I used to watch HGTV as a kid. I have been fascinated by spatial relationships. I love architecture and have a little bit of interest in landscape design.  

Can you tell me a little about your major or career plans?
 Well, I started out being an art major. After my second semester in college I decided to change my major to psychology (quite a jump). Hopefully I will be able to blend my art passion and my interest in psychology together. I hope to become an art-therapist after I graduate. This way I can utilize my interest in art and help people with their issues at the same time. Who knows, I may change my major again to design...we'll just have to see how things pan out.

How much do you think a design can affect someone?
 I believe design can affect individuals. Just think, everyone has their own opinions, likes/dislikes when it comes to design, so naturally design can be a large part of an individuals' life. To most people, their home is a sanctuary; the design that is chosen reflects an individuals' personal style and personality. Design lets people express themselves.

 How does color, design, and the arrangement of a space affect someone? Color has a major impact on an individual; bright colors can lift you up, and energize you. Dark colors are soothing, calming, and relaxing. Colors can affect individuals' mood and activities. I beleieve color choice in the home is especially important. Arrangement of space depends on the individual. A cluttered space may seem "more like home" to one person, while the next feels claustrophobic. 

Do you have a favorite color, photo, or song that makes a hard day easier? Usually if I'm having a hard day, looking at pictures of nature helps to calm and makes me feel at peace.
What are some of the pros and cons of a typical small living space, such as a dorm or starting apartment? Some of the pros are: less area to clean up and easier to decorate. Cons are not enough room and  not full ability to decorate (such as paint the walls).

Since you are an avid biker and enjoy card making, how do you deal with storage of your bike and supplies? This has continually been a problem that I have had to deal with. I now have 3 bikes, but luckily I have been able to live in spaces that have more room. My first semester I lived in a dorm that had an extra room for my (and my roommates) bikes. Now I live in an apartment off-campus with a bunch of teammates, and we use the entrance hallway as a line-up for our bikes. My art stuff has created more of a problem. I have a lot of stuff that I like to have with me. I use storage boxes and containers to store all of my art stuff together in a small space. I have had to leave some of my art stuff at home because I do not have the room to keep it all with me. I would really like to take my sewing machine with me, but it is way too big, so it stays home. The essential art materials I do take with me to college, and use often.

How have you personalized your space(s)? Any project you particularly have enjoyed? 
I have put up a lot of photos and posters around my room. I have also some of my bike parts (an extra frame, and odds and ends pieces) hanging up on my wall for art. I really enjoyed making curtains for my windows. They took quite a bit of time, but they are the most useful thing I have put in my room so far. 

Is there anything you just can't live without or that you really recommend including in a dorm room? The pasta cooker I have it really great in a dorm room situation. Also, good lighting I think is really important. Organization tools, storage containers, decorative boxes, baskets, ect. can be extremely helpful with creating a dorm room. Anything that makes you feel at home and comfortable in your space is a must.
What's your favorite... a) color, b) type of art or craft, c) food, d) book, e) movie. 
Color: Red, Orange, & Yellow
Type of art/craft: greeting card making
Food: Anything Italian
Book: The Magus
Movie: Life or Something Like It and Memento

Thursday, September 25, 2008

I'm learning

This sewing machine was my Aunt June's. The built in light is out (hence the obnoxious desk lamp in the background), the feeder dogs are lazy at best, and I've already managed to break a needle. I love this machine. 

I still don't really know what I'm doing, but I do know how to thread it and how hypothetically I should wind a bobbin. Except I don't have enough umph to turn the stupid release yet. All in good time I suppose... 

I've wasted a lot of thread in the last two days. I've failed a lot in general, actually. But you know what? Sewing makes me happy. I can't really understand why I am not frustrated (I guess that's what chemistry is for) or why I am not angry at my poor, tired, machine (that's what old politicians are for), but I am not either of those things. Its rather nice. 

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

PMD: Personalize

There's nothing more depressing than a sterile dorm room. Its true that most people I know have more trouble with clutter than a blank slate, but I know of the occassional room where everything simply MUST have a PURPOSE. Its true that it can be difficult packing everything you need and everything that makes you feel at home into your tiny Prius to treck thousands of miles from home, but realistically a $4 (or $20) poster, stuffed animal, or whatever can make all the difference. I personally think every dorm should have at least one (offline) photo, lest you appear Dexter-like, or at the very least put your peeps on your screen saver. Sometimes life sucks and its important that your room makes you happy and not remind you of a prison. 

Besides, when you invite someone into your room, you'll appear quite lovable with a WALL-E at your desk. (Who could say no to a face like this? You'll at least get some pizza out of the deal...)

A word on poster selection (that time honored constant of dorm decor): Put up whatever poster you happen to like. Whether its a landscape or your heroes, within reason, ignore your roommate....

even if you are in the heart of Republican teritory. Just put it on the inside of your closet door.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Australian Crafty Love

I'm a google reader junkie, I admit. When I get all my feeds read, I add more. Its an odd sort of addiction. I've been collecting crafty blogs mostly and I'm always surprised by the variety of bloggers that are out there writing about their craft. 

Particularly today, when I found this crafty fellow. He's (apparently) an astrophysict who teaches high school, has two cats, from AUSTRALIA, and he knits. He does weekly podcasts and let me tell you, its not just the knitting patterns that will get a girl motivated, if you catch my accent lovin' drift. ^__^ 

Anyways, I have mucho homework I should be doing this weekend, but instead I've finished the second season of weeds and started another hat. Sigh. 

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

PMD: Organization

I'll admit, I suck at staying organized for more than a week at a time. I'll do really good for a few days but then I'll do laundry and forget to put it up for a few hours, and then I throw my dirty clothes on the floor in the corner to keep the clean clothes off the bed and.... well, you get the idea. Living in a dorm doesn't really help, what with the lack of real estate and the pile of textbooks that inevitably end up on the floor, the better to trip over when I need to go to the bathroom at 4 am. 

To make it worse, I've become crafty. With all the tiny buttons, sale fabrics, and odds and ends that set my heart a flutter lately, its getting harder to contain all of the stuff  I've acquired. My weakness is yarn. At $1.87 for this absolutely FABULOUS yarn (found it at the Evil Empire of Wal-Mart, I admit it) its the cheapest thrill I can get. (No, seriously, if you have any appreciation at all for yarn, this is pretty much amazing. Best hats yet!) Yarn may keep me entertained for hours, but I have these small-ish odd sized balls left over that run amok. 

Fortunately, I've found these adorable little red cubes at Fred's, a local dollar type store. They are really durable and hold my office things, such as staplers and paper clips, as well as odds and ends of yarn. They meet all my criteria of functional home decor: cheap, cute, and durable. What more can anyone ask for? 

Monday, September 15, 2008


The hat making has returned with a vengence. Two of these hats already have a home, they just need to be taken to the post office (assuming I can find it), but the white one is just so sumptuous... I may have to work extra hard to find someone to adopt it. 

Anyways, TJ/Ike/laziness sorta derailed my pimp my dorm plans for last week, but never fear! More are on the way. And most likely more hats. >.< 

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Meet T.J.

Oh sure, Tiger Junior (T.J.) looks all cute and innocent right here. But really, he's a Tiny Jihadist  whose only goal is to DESTROY.

See? He's a total terrorist. 

Thankfully, he's still a little jetlagged. There's hope he can be caught yet!

(Disclaimer: I do know what day it is, and what month, and I am not religiously intolerant. I'm only making fun of my cat, who is currently sleeping on my lap, and the current political climate. Not that any of you care, I'm just pointing it out for prosterity.) 

Sunday, September 7, 2008

PMD: Shag is Not the Answer

I'm not really sure why, but colleges tend to brag about flooring in thier admissions material, especially in new or renovated dorms that have hard wood floors. I lived in a brand spanking new dorm last year, complete with hard woods, and they were consistently cold and remarkably easy to scratch. This year, I'm in a 1970s era "apartment" with the same cheap carpeting from elementary school. Its ugly and about as easy to keep clean as a toddler. 

However, I don't care! I covered most of the ugly carpeting with a fabulous rug:  
This groovy little number is canvas, so it will last basically forever and is washer friendly. The colors are a little off in the picture, but its a lovely light blue that looks pretty good with my chocolate brown bedding. Found it at Lowe's, that evil empire of home goods.

So, if you've been assigned to a year of cheap "hard wood" or gross carpet, you'll want a rug that's a) washable, b) durbale fabric, c) not an obscene color. Shag will only trap allergins, and whatever other foul things you might track in, and will probably fall apart if you try to throw it in the industrial strength washer.

If you do put a rug on hard woords, you might want to tape it down to prevent sliding. There are some handy non-skid strips available for purchase, but any tape that won't destroy the finish on wood or rug will work too. Be sure to test an inconspicous corner before duct taping. A good rule to follow no matter what, actually... 

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Pimp My Dorm Month

Dorm life can be crazy amazing. I mean, what can be better than a printer jam at 3 am, cold pizza that is most likely a biohazard, and a roommate that could possibly qualify as crazy? Obviously the tiny hole housing assigned you to, of course!

I'm declaring September Pimp My Dorm Month here at inklingspot. Why? Well, because I said so and because tiny bland dorms can be seriously depressing. Besides, they don't have to be sad little holes. Really! 

I have a mystery guest bloger lined up (I know, how excited are you?), some nifty style ideas, and if anyone has any tricks they've used to make their dorm room homier, I WANT TO KNOW! Send me pictures or whatever. 

September is going to be pimp. Really. 

June 2020

Some context (and flowers):  When I was 16, I moved out of my parents house. My first roommate didn't stay, so I think a nine-weeks into...