DIY Abstract Painted Potholders

DIY Abstract Painted Potholders-1-Design Crush


The first weekend in May I had the chance to lead a workshop at Anthropologie where we made these fun and colorful abstract painted potholders. I made a few samples beforehand for inspiration, so I thought I’d share those along with a bit from the event itself, then tell you how to make your own.


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The girls at the Pittsburgh Anthro’s Bakery Square location did an amazing job setting up for what was actually their first ever event. We all noshed on the tastiest mini cupcakes, fruit water, and plenty of Prosecco while painting. It was a beautiful day, and sitting inside those big windows with the warm sun shining in made everyone extra creative.


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The best part of this project is that there are zero rules, it’s all about having fun. Paint skills don’t matter one bit because the end result is meant to be abstract and playful. We played with different materials to create designs – drinking straws, toothpicks, and cardboard – that could add a graphic element.


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This gal was the life of the party. She showed up with her babysitter about halfway through and proceeded to tell everyone how wonderful they were doing (her words) before creating this masterpiece to give to her cousin. We sent her off with plenty of cupcakes and took plenty of selfies.


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• plain white potholders (make sure they are meant for use, not decorative)
• matte acrylic paint
• paintbrushes
• paper plates for palettes
• paper towels
• drinking straws, toothpicks, etc
• water jar for brush rinsing


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Thanks to Anthropologie for hosting the event and to everyone who came out to create!


Fireclay Tile

Fireclay-1-Design Crush


I’m generally drawn to safe neutrals when choosing the more permanent features in a space. Hues that help to create a blank canvas to build out a room upon, ones that have legs beyond my current style preference. But then I learned about Fireclay Tile and their incredible, brilliantly designed products that are made by hand in their factory just outside San Francisco. Their expansive collection of designs, shapes, and colors has got my creative engine turning and I’m thinking that maybe I need to take a walk on the wild side!


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Glop solves two problems right off the bat. The silicone line of dishware designed by Berta Julià Sala saves you both cabinet space and dirty dishes by being so bendy and multifunctional. Use the tall cylinder as a vase or serving vessel. Use a bowl to eat cereal, then bend it up to slurp up the milk. You get the idea, and it’s kind of brilliant.







10 May DIYs











Click on each image to go to the project.
All photos copyright of their respective sites unless otherwise noted.


Nude Art Done Right


Casey Keasler for Design*Sponge

Nude art, accepted and regaled as some of the most popular once upon a time, is often seen as taboo in today’s society. (Half naked people on TV? Okay. Tastefully painted expressionist female form? The horror.) I’m of the opinion that a good piece of naked art can be really amazing in nearly any room, and I’m finding proof that others agree. Take a peek at how nudes are being incorporated into everyday home decor, then scroll down to shop the look.


Alice Gao-Design Crush

Alice Gao


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Patrick Cline


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Max Snow



Clockwise from top left: Vintage A. Moyer // André Lemos Pinto // Catalina Somolinos // Ewa Dabkiewicz


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Stanimir Stoykov



Clockwise from top left: GalerieMiniMal // Geordanna Cordero-Fields // Vitali Komarov //
1950s Pin-Up Photograph



Neoflam-1-Design Crush


I’ve been trying to cut back on costs before summer and its full schedule of activities and events hit full stride, mainly by cooking at home more and eating out less. A big part of being in the kitchen for me is enjoying the process, and having sturdy hardworking pieces to work with can make or break the experience. So when Neoflam asked if I’d like to try out some of their retro cookware I didn’t hesitate. I was surprised by just how light their cast aluminum pieces are, a huge difference-maker when lifting a potful of my famous (among dozens) peanut soup. The sleek lines and colors look so good in my kitchen that I’ve opted to keep my stockpot stovetop even when not in use. (Check out the Promotions section of their site to score a deal of your own!)


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I received product in exchange for this post. All words and opinions are my own. Thank you for supporting the brands that support Design Crush!


Studio Twocan

Studio Twocan-1-Design Crush


Studio Twocan is a creative studio managed by sisters Maddie and Becc Sharrock. Each piece the duo creates is individually crafted, showing off their dedication and commitment to quality of design and manufacture. The cement is colored using pigment inspired by Australian landscapes, then each piece is polished with natural oils, sealing the cement with a satin finish. This process celebrates imperfections and ensures that each piece is unique. Check out their shop to make a piece your own.


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Hedley and Bennett Aprons

Hedley and Bennett Aprons-1-Design Crush


I’ve been in the process of getting my backyard into tiptop summer entertaining condition, including an unexpected hand-me-down from my aunt and uncle in the form of a three times used grill that I can’t wait to put through its paces. Any grill master worth their salt requires a sturdy apron, and these chef’s grade designs ones from Hedley and Bennett are the perfect thing.


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Happy Weekend

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10-Design Crush

01/ The Smallest Printing Company is a fully functioning printing press!
02/ The Floating House Shelves essentially double as a doll house for adults.
03/ Sit back and Relax, Let’s Go Though a Car Wash.
04/ A clever ad campaign for DuPont Nutrition & Health imagines mini doorways in foods.
05/ Sad animal facts.
06/ Portraits created from concentric circles of paint by Gavin Rain.
07/ I double dog dare you not to smile at Dry Dog, Wet Dog.
08/ Melissa McCracken suffers from synesthesia and paints what music looks like to her.
09/ Quicksilver’s True Wetsuits look like business suits!
10/ The Selfie Arm both intrigues me and makes me worry about humanity.

This week on Design Crush:
Showcase Mirror is a wall display for your favorite things.
Pretty folksy jewelry that’s perfect for summer from Gamma Folk.
Talwst creates the coolest mini dioramas in vintage ring boxes.
A roundup of the best Mother’s Day cards out there. (Psst, it’s May 10th.)
Super sexy paper cut babes with great hair and tattoos by Belinda Rodriguez.
The stone shelf would be perfect in so many places around the house.
Neon bright reversible embroidered art from Liz Payne.
Crushing on these Atelier Dion colored clay mugs in a big way.
Sybille Paulsen supports and celebrates cancer patients through her wearable hair art.


Atelier Dion Colored Clay Mugs

Atelier Dion-1-Design Crush


Seems ironic that what I’m admiring most right now, just as the weather warms, is a foursome of Atelier Dion Colored Clay Mugs. These beauties are crafted out of signature pigmented clays rather than painted or glazed. (The silver lining/justification is that a day doesn’t go by that I don’t start with coffee.)


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