Inspiration // How do You Catch it & be Original?

Learning how others get inspired to make & create things is, well, very inspiring to me.  Reading & discovering blogs is a way to delve deep into someone's creative mind.  Discovering how they share in the process we call creativity really unites me with those I consider to be artists.  (We all search for those like us & blogging is a way to find them!) Sharing DIY's & inspiration boards with in the giant blogging community give me so much inspiration it's hard to contain it all in my head!
How to Create Original Artwork
Online boards like Pinterest offer a great way to socially share your inspiration.  I am not quite sure if you remember wists.com, but it was back before the amazing Pinterest & was my first exposure to social bookmarking.  In fact I just logged in (after a few attempts) & found that I had a few pages of things saved.  It wasn't as gorgeous as Pinterest but it did the trick.

So what am I getting at? I am getting at the fact that we pull inspiration from everywhere & most of the time it's hard to keep track.  So when I find myself hard up on DIY's to do or things to blog about, I pull out my trusty Blog Book, open my Pinterest & click through the things I've pinned.

I jot down ideas that the images inspire & even to follow step by step some tutorials.  Pinterest has a wonderful way to categorize your finds that Wists did not.  The only downfall is not being able to give credit where credit is due.  My suggestion, as I struggle with this too, is to give it your best shot.  Give credit where you can & mention you found it on Pinterest if you'd like.  I think the blogging community is well aware of how things can get lost on social pin boards.  I try not to stress too much over it.  Just don't outright steal! That's just not nice.

Putting my pins in my blog book helps me to visually & tangibly organize inspiration for the making & blogging.  Sometimes all Pinterest helps me do is take up a bit of net space & I don't ever do anything with it.  By filling in ideas in my Blog Book I find I have more chance to actually do it.  Seeing the ideas as I flip to find a clean page also puts the inspiration further in my creative brain!
on being original

A lot of what I find inspiring for DIYing I list under a Handmade Inspiration title because I've discovered that pinning an image of an original creation under the caption "I can totally DIY this" isn't very nice.  Others have worked so hard to share with you what they've created that we shouldn't dismiss their work by claiming we are more crafty or that we can make something similar or let alone, better.  This is another reason why I like to share the inspiration behind what I make, especially if I am inspired by a place like Pinterest.  Pretty much this quote that I randomly stole from the internet sums it up:
“Nothing is original. Steal from anywhere that resonates with inspiration or fuels your imagination. Devour old films, new films, music, books, paintings, photographs, poems, dreams, random conversations, architecture, bridges, street signs, trees, clouds, bodies of water, light and shadows. Select only things to steal from that speak directly to your soul. If you do this, your work (and theft) will be authentic. Authenticity is invaluable; originality is non-existent. And don’t bother concealing your thievery - celebrate it if you feel like it. In any case, always remember what Jean-Luc Godard said: “It’s not where you take things from - it’s where you take them to.” 
― Jim Jarmusch
We are all in a community here so it's great to be supportive & I know that I'd love to know who took some inspiration from something I've shared!

Some important things to remember:
- when you pin something, make sure you are pinning from the original post, not just the front page (or one page) of the blog/website.  That way the next Pinner & can find the very post the pin is on.
- Don't tag art or other original creations as "I totally can do this!" cuz it's just not nice.
- If at all possible, include the web address in the tag section.
- If you follow the person on pinterest whose site you grabbed something from, tag them too.
- Remember to have fun & try not to take it crazy seriously.  Just be as honest & genuine as possible!

Other places I like to check out: Craft Gawker, Dwelling Gawker, & Wedding Gawker.

ps. read about creating a blog book here!

How to do you organize your ideas? Do you ever pull your ideas off of Pinterest & put them to paper?

xoxo, Moe


Mini Make it Monday // Mini Notebook DIY

I've been super busy this past week & had no time to do a real DIY.  I had this contact paper left over from these other DIY's last year & knew I had to do something with it.

start off with your notebooks & pieces of contact paper measured to approximately the size of the notebook.
peel a bit of the backing off the contact paper & begin to apply it to the front of your notebook.
wrap it around to the back.
trim off all the hang over & flatten any bubbles.

On another note I am off today to go thrifting some more...I am hoping to have something in the works here soon as a part of the blog & the shop!

It's been weird today, being home by myself, since I was with my family all last week.  It's kinda like I don't know what to do with myself.  I had a big list of things I wanted to accomplish today but I just don't feel motivated.  I sort of feel lost.

Yesterday I met up with Megan from Freckled Italian & asked her loads of questions.  I am so happy to be friends with such an awesome lady.  It's so great to have a real person to talk blog stuff with!

Happy Monday, all!


Sum Up Sunday // The Passing of a Man

This past week my family has been in mourning of the passing of my Grandfather at the age of 75.  I've thought long about blogging this & if it is appropriate to share, but I thought that sharing a little something would be fine.

My Grandfather was a great man.  He served in the United States Navy for 20 years, worked Civil Service for another 20 or so, was married to my Grandmother for 57 years, & gave me the best Dad, Aunts, & life I could ask for.

my little brother-from-another-mother (my Dad's young photography Padawan) captured this amazing photograph as he was photographing the Military Honors for my Granddad.  

At the funeral, many, many people from his life came.  More came than we would have imagined.  It was wonderful to see that such a man touched so many people.

I am not quite sure what my Grandmother will do after this week is over & all the relatives leave, but it is a wonderful feeling of family around here.

Last night, after the funeral & at home with Zach, I cried more than I had the whole week (from his passing on Monday to the funeral on Friday).  I was scared that he would feel all alone since he was at the cemetery & it was so cold outside.  I told Zach I didn't want him to think we'd all left him.  Early this morning I had a dream about him.  In the dream, I was leaving their house (I am not sure if it was about me leaving that night or leaving like I always do from their house) & said goodbye to everyone.  I came down stairs & he spun around in his computer chair, surprising me.  I went over to him, gave him a hug, & he told me he loved me.  He also told me he liked my earrings & something about giving a pair to me for Christmas.  I told him I loved him, too.  He told me to be careful, like he always does, and then I woke up.  I don't know if dreams mean things, I've never really given that type of stuff much credit.

His favorite holiday was Christmas.  He loved Santa & seeing everyone unwrap their gifts!

This morning, I went with my family over to his plot in the cemetery & saw all the flowers on his grave.  I knew that he didn't feel alone or cold at all, he had enough warmth.  I know that by the time the flowers die he will have made his journey to where ever it is we go.  I personally believe we weigh our hearts against the feather of Ma'at.  It just seems to make sense....

I hope your week went well & that you spent it with those you love, it really is the most important thing.


Fan Fridays // Shoe Inspiration

My favorite thing to pin on my boards on Pinterest is shoes.  DIY tutorials & shoes that are just plain gorgeous grace my My Style board & my Handmade Inspiration board.  I love to pop by the thrift store & see what shoes I may be able to DIY with.

This Fan Friday is all about yummy shoes:

Pick up some boots from the thrift store & cheapo belts to create this look!
for a less crazy look, just wrap some belts in the same color around a pair you already own!

This awesome DIY from A Beautiful Mess will take old boots from Drap to Fab!
I don't have any lace up boots, I got rid of them in high school (they were like combat boots!) & I wish I'd kept them!

I am still in love with Aztec prints & really want to find another pair of Moccasins to pain or sandals to DIY

I am feeling very DIY-ish this week.  I have so many ideas swimming around in my head that I can't wait to get out.

It's raining here today but I hope your Friday is awesome & that your weekend rocks!

What are you plans for the weekend? Any shoe shopping in the works? 


My Boyfriend // Better than Yours

That's a bit of an uptight & snobby title for a post right? My Boyfriend is better than yours?  Well friends, I hate to say it...but he is.  You wanna know why? I'll share 10 reasons why:

He is a great, awesome, wonderful, fantastic, amazing cook

He knows a little bit about everything & alotta bit about somethings. Usually if I ask him a question he has an answer for it or he can figure it out.  He stimulates my mind & we have discussions about important topics & current events all the time.  The first time I went to his house I remembered this quote:

He has A LOT of books 

He asks about my blog & if I've blogged about him.  He cares about when I get excited about twitter, he asks about my pinterest, & who's liked my instagram photos...especially when it's of food he's cooked. I am trying to convince him to do a guest post here with some food he's made!!

He wants to go places like DC & Monticello for trips.  He likes to learn as much as I do, even about art which he thought he'd hate.  We watch the History Chanel 9 times out of 10

He's understanding, he doesn't push, & he genuinely cares.  It makes me so happy to know that I have a man that just gets it.  He just understands!

He's cute.

His laugh is amazing.  For the most part he's a serious dude.  He isn't too light hearted & he takes things he does seriously (total opposite of me!).  So when he laughs it's like hearing a child laugh for the first time.  That is when I know he is the most happy.

He has high expectations for himself & for us. I have to admit the second half of this one is a bit scary.  But it's also comforting to know that at this point in life he knows what he wants.

He doesn't embarrass easily. He'll ask a complete stranger a question.  He starts the line instead of waiting in it.  He's pretty much impermeable to ridicule.

He holds my hand. That's an important one right? He shows me he's there.........

Well, thats it friends.  I am sure I've convinced you that my boyfriend is much better than yours right? No?  Well tell me about yours why don't you!?!?!


Dorm Dec Wednesday // Dream Home - Closet Space

Since there has been a lot of change in my life in the past few weeks (days even) I've been thinking a lot about what I'd like to have in another, more permanent, home.  Right now where I live doesn't have much storage.  There's an attic & a few closets but no real storage space for things for everyday use.  For example (and I won't show you a picture) we have a spare room that was supposed to be a craft room but has been turned into a let's just put this crap here room.  It's rather frustrating!

I also have too many clothes & shoes for the small standard closets in this place.  My Junior year of College, I had a lovely walk in closet with some over head storage, it was wonderful.  Every year since though, closet space has just been diminishing.  My rack even fell off in my closet in the middle of hanging up clothes! What??

Anyway, if I had it my way, I'd have all of these things in my room:

images found through pinterest

On the quest of decorating a small space, it's hard to display things.  I love to display my collections of shoes, jewelry, anything really & a lot of space gets cluttered easily.  For example, my vanity is just full of bits of things.  I am a clutter bug who thirsts for minimalism.  I don't think I'll ever make it....

I love to turn to Little Chief Honey Bee & A Beautiful Mess for decor inspiration.  I've also been obsessed with thumbing through the hashtags on Instagram.  If you're on Instagram, come find me! My username is fivesixteenths.  I love finding other crafty & inspirational peeps!

What do would you have in your dream home?  Do have a dream home already decorated through Pinterest? (I do!)


Yummy Recipe // Twist on a Salad

In an attempt to be a bit more real on Five Sixteenths, I am going to be straight with you for a second.  
Going Paleo is hard!!!

Recently I've been trying to go Paleo.  I love the concept & while I don't really stick to the diet I've used it as inspiration to eat healthier.  Branching off of the main mantra (if you will) of the Paleo diet, I've tried to eat only Meat, Veggies, Fruits, & Nuts.  Eating well balanced meals like these & eating healthier snacks I hope to gain a healthier lifestyle.

So far I've fallen off a bit & I think it's because I was looking at it as the dreaded D-word: DIET.  I should have been looking at is as lifestyle!  I need to get into the habit of going to the store weekly to buy fresh foods otherwise I fall victim to whatever is in the fridge.  My problem is that I love all foods equally.  I don't hate veggies & only eat sweets.....I just eat them equally.  By limiting my diet in this way (meat, veggies, fruits, & nuts) I should be gaining back a little balance.  I am not quite sure if I am ready to give up cakes just yet but Megan shared this great brownie recipe that I think I am dying to try.

Staying on track, I think, means choosing to eat a good breakfast, lunch, & dinner.  It means being aware of what you are eating not just eating it.  Considering what your mean is made of is important.  While I know I have control of the meals & foods I eat, I feel it is easier to manage breakfasts & lunches.  Usually I try to eat an orange or other fruit for breakfast & a yummy salad for lunch.  Since eating has become a social gathering I feel that leaving dinners open for interpretation is a good way to balance your social eating life with a healthy one. First, I love to eat & second, I love to eat with friends.  So going out to restaurants is not going to be thrown out of my life.  The best example I can think of balancing while eating out is ordering something that seems a bit healthier or consciously eating less. For me, I need to remember that this is my project & it's ok to lose some battles but you have to get back up.

Eating a bit of something, like an orange, everyday for breakfast & a salad every day for lunch can get a bit tiring.  So since I like different flavors & love all foods equally I decided to throw together an awesome salad (or two) that I could eat on a regular basis & not get tired of!

* my chicken breast was from a can, but you could use leftovers from last nights meal, etc.

I love salads.  I honestly could eat a salad everyday & I think I should!  New goal: Salad 5 out of the 7 days of the week!

These recipes show how simple it is to add different things to the same old salad.  I really like the Kiwi & Celery because the celery added a great crunch & the tart kiwi went great with the balsamic vinegar. These salads were filling & kept with the meat, veggies, fruit, & nuts mantra that I have in my life right now!

How to do you keep your healthy lifestyle from getting too boring? Have you tried the Paleo diet? Do you have any helpful hints?


Make it Monday // Neon Moccasins

A while back (after Christmas, actually) I went to Target & found these great & comfy moccasins.  I am not quite sure if they are slippers or if they are actually for going outside.  They have some fur on the inside which leads me to believe they are slippers but the soles are hard which means I can wear them outside right?

I've seen loads of gorgeous moccasins & have been coveting them badly!  I had a great pair of Minnetonka Mocs fo ages but unfortunately the soles got all hard & I slipped down the stairs.  Whoops!  I was going to do this DIY with them but I knew I could't wear them around if I was going to slip!

These were my favorite! I loved the winged part.  RIP Moccasins!

What you'll need:
Moccasins you are willing to paint, acrylic paint, brushes, binder clips/clothes pins

My moccasins didn't untie to pull the flap of fringe out of the way so I used a few binder clips/clothes pins to keep it out of the way.

I used a white base coat under the neon green/yellow paint that I had so that it would pop out more.  Paint two base coats of white & let dry thoroughly between coats.  Paint three coats of the top color.  Make sure each layer dries thoroughly between coats.  Use a hair dryer to speed it up.

You can add a few designs to the sides too.  At first I wanted to put some glitter on these moccasins but then I decided against it.  It might work out, it might not.  It's all about experiments.

I can't wait to wear these with every casual outfit I put on.  Color is really important to the outfits I put together.  I love mixing & matching! There are few things I am afraid of & Pattern and Color aren't included!

Do you love neon? How do you style your Mocs?


Sum Up Sunday // Suit Up!

One of my favorite shows to watch on Netflix & on TV is How I Met Your Mother.  Not only is it a darling comedy about a group of friends in the city but Barney has to be my favorite character.  Always in a suit & tie, Barney makes it a point to be the classy one & with the most ladies.  I find it hilarious all the stunts he pulls in the show.  Today, Zach & I went shopping for some real world work clothes for him since he is getting out of the military in April.  He's got only two nice shirts & one pair of khakis.  Today, after an hour & a half in Penny's (boy's seem to be much easier to shop for than girls) he came away with two pairs of pants, a sport coat, seven shirts, & 4 ties.  When he came out of the dressing room in his sport coat, black pants, shirt, & tie.....I fainted a little bit.  Now I know why Barney suits up....all the ladies love it!!

I also got my first massage from a student & friend at work.  She's just finishing up here training with us at work & is working on her practicals.  Instead of relaxing we pretty much talked away which was good because talking & getting massage really helped me work through some stuff.  I guess getting a massage & talking with a good friend is what you need!  If you haven't gotten a massage I totally encourage you too! See if there is a massage school in your area that offers half price or discounted massages.  If you've never had one it's worth a shot!!

On the photo a day front, my happiness is Sunday afternoons with my man & my puppy! This afternoon I am sans a man & am watching Dr. Who with my room mate.  The puppy is curled up with his blankie :) Last Monday morning I went home to my parent's house to get an oil change from the place I've gone since I had my first car.  I am loyal like that!

My new toothbrush is very girly.  I love toothbrushes & I love the dentist.  I could fall asleep when they clean my teeth.  I'd choose the dentist over any other doctor any day!!!  My purchase for January photo a day was this potato chip maker.  Alycia bought one & showcased it on her blog & immediately and without question went & purchased it.  It is AMAZING.  I totally suggest getting it....like for real.  You can make apple chips, sweet potato chips, etc.  AMAZING.  I also bought this sewing kit from the thrift store.  Such a sweet deal for $7.25.  There is a load of stuff in there.  It was like Christmas opening it up!

The person that I love happens to be this little puppy who loves to have his picture taken.  He can't get enough & loves my little instax camera because it makes noise.  Last night we had a date night at Red Lobster (so not Paleo!) & then headed home to watch more Stargate.  It was rainy last night & cold and is super cold today.  

What did you do this week? How's the weather where you are?


Fan Fridays // Paint, Pattern, Photography

This week hasn't been as busy as last week on the work front.  While the phones do occasionally ring at the same time & I have no idea how to answer both of them at the same time, I'd say the after Christmas rush may be over....

On the home front, we still have our Christmas tree up.  I'm not complaining but I think we should start to think about taking it down.  This weekend will be all about cleaning the apartment (mine & helping Zach...).  I also have my first ever massage on Saturday! I am so excited to be so relaxed!!

Yesterday I shamefully bought 11 Nail Polishes from Icing & went thrifting over lunch where I found this beauty for $7.25
There are so many amazing things in the bottom of this box that I probably will do a whole post about it! 

Things I love from around the web:

These lovely bags with beautiful prints!  Love it!
Buy the small pouch here
Catch the Clutch DIY here from Tick Tock Vintage
Check out the website for the bottom image here
All recently pinned on Pinterest

This great watch display.  Mine doesn't look this good...I've got too many things on my dresser :(

Elycia shared some great Photog tips on Shrimp Salad Circus

I need to buy a remote for my camera & I've found one on Amazon, I just gotta check out.  I love taking pictures & wish I had more good ones of myself.  

What are you loving this week? Have you ever had a massage before? How was it?

ps. I found this really cool blog to link all you fave pinterest finds to for the week!! Check it out & link up!



Dorm Dec Wednesday // Nail Polish Display

Recently I've grown to fall in love with nail polish.  I am not quite sure if it's because I've been taking the Nail Tech class through where I work or because I discovered chip resistant nail polish from Claire's & Icing.  I used to not paint my nails because I'd just let the polish chip & that doesn't look too good.......

With this new found love of nail polish for every occasion, I decided I'd wear more of it if it was displayed better.  Instead of being a jumbled mess sitting on my dresser I found a spice rack at Big Lot's to  use as a display.  I'd hoped to thrift one but my efforts were fruitless.  I found a little display case with a heart on it & something in the shape of a house...but no spice rack.  So I headed to the next best place: Big Lot's.  If I didn't find one there I would have headed to TJ Maxx or the like.

Since this spice rack was made for a drawer, I had to lean in on the wall in order to make the 'shelves' level to set the polish on.  The only other down side is that now I can't buy any more polishes!!

You can see it's leaning on the wall here & it's expandable.  Unfortunately, I've expanded it as far as it will go.  There was another one at the store so I might go back & pick that one up but I am running out of room for all my other things on my vanity.  It's getting pretty full as it is.

I love my train case & I have a bunch of little knick knacks that I just absolutely have to have (yeah right!) so I may have to re-evaluate the lay out.

Being a display lover I love having all of my polishes out in the open.  If my room mate wants to borrow any, she can see them easily too.  Perhaps this will convince her to display hers!

How do you store your polishes? Do you have a large collection like I do?

p.s. If you haven't already, would you please take my reader survey? I'd appreciate it!


My Blog Planner // How to Stay on Track

After sharing my 2012 Blog Book on Instagram the other day a cool little follower asked me to elaborate on it.  So I thought I'd do a post on what I am doing new in 2012 & what I like to do when I sit down to blog.
Keeping a regular posting schedule is important to maintaining a blogging presence.  When thinking about keeping up a blog, think of yourself as a reader first.  What would you like to see if you were a regular or a new reader?

A regular posting schedule gives your readers something to look forward to & makes it easy for new readers to figure out your blog.  Looking forward to something keeps readers coming back.

I always have a hard time with a posting schedule.  Sometimes I'd end up posting too late or not at all or I'd just post something to post something & it wasn't a quality post at all.  I'd try to be like all the blogs I followed but getting caught up in the game if you will didn't give me quality ideas to share.

Re-evalutating & thinking about what I'd want to see if I were a reader and including quality posts that reflect who I am encouraged me to start this little routine.  So here's a glimpse into my blog planning:

Blog Book -

Having a place to jot down ideas is important to coming up with quality over quantity.   I picked up this book at TJ Maxx (my favorite place!) & its just small enough to fit in my purse & has enough pages to divide up into weekly features.  Dividing up the blog book into the weekly features helps keep track of ideas in specific categories.  I find it easier than flipping through pages & pages of things I've jotted down.

I also included one big section for blog ideas, general things that don't really fall into categories or ideas for random personal posts.  My dividers are:

Make it Monday, Manicure Ideas, Blog Tutorials, 
Blog Topics, Outfits, Quotes, Shop Stuff, Blog Development

I've found this super helpful! Just the other day I was waiting for Zach while he was fixing his friend's TV & I pulled out my book and jotted down some ideas.  Whenever you see something or find inspiration you will know the exact place to write it down!

Planner - 

Month at a glance & daily planners are the bomb.  I forgot how much I loved them in college.  I would plan out my whole week, month, year, etc & be a busy little bee.  Planning got put to the wayside when I graduated because I didn't really think I needed to plan any thing.  I knew when my posts were supposed to go up...I could handle it right? 

On the month at a glance page, mark all the regular occurring posts. The only posts I really want to happen every week are the Make it Monday, Dorm Dec Wednesday, Fan Friday, & Sum up Sunday.  Thursday & Saturday don't have reoccurring themes & Tempted Tuesdays don't need to happen every week.  So Tuesday, Thursday, & Saturday are the only days I need to worry about more original content. Planning more than a week ahead for the regular occurring posts is why I have the dividers in my blog book!  Tuesday, Thursday, & Saturday post ideas can usually be found in the Blog Ideas section.

Once I have all of the regular posts marked, I fill in the details for those posts that I know.  Like what the post will be.  Now I can see which regular posts haven't been filled in with the idea behind the post.  Flipping through my Blog Book I can find ideas that I'd like to use.  I do the same thing for the Tuesday, Thursday, & Saturday posts.  (Saturday usually remains vacant but if there is something I am just dying to share, I'll throw it in.)

Now I head to the weekly planner & fill in the posts that are supposed to go up with their post titles/subjects.  Then I plan! I fill in what I need to work on & on what day.  Weekends & Mondays are pretty much reserved for DIY projects & photographing things, weeknights I blog infront of the TV, etc.  I even fill in things in life like a puppy play date & oil change!

This planner really keeps me on track! It pretty much tells me I have to blog!

Note pad - 

I keep a notepad handy so that I can elaborate on ideas.  Recently I've been working on making the blog better through a quasi blog workshop I've found online.  This note pad is a bigger place to work on the blog ideas jotted down in the blog book.  I've also used it to manage sponsors before, though I've never been really good at managing sponsors.....

If there is anything you need to elaborate on or create a time line for (like a blog project or group thing) a notepad offers a bigger space to write.  I keep mine near my computer since I blog from all over & sometimes put it in my purse.  I think I have to upgrade from my little clutch here shortly!

I hope this post on blog planning has helped you & inspired you! I'd love to know your blog planning methods.  Please share with me how you keep up an awesome blog!

If you have any questions, shoot me an email fivesixteenthsblog@gmail.com.  I'd love to help!

Helpful Links:
Blog Planner from Love Elycia
Organization from A Beautiful Mess

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