Archives For Books

Today we’re taking inspiration in Henry David Thoreau’s words on libraries, via Brain Pickings.

“The Library is a wilderness of books. The volumes of the Fifteenth, Sixteenth, and Seventeenth Centuries, which lie so near on the shelf, are rarely opened, are effectually forgotten and not implied by our literature and newspapers. When I looked into Purchas’s Pilgrims, it affected me like looking into an impassable swamp, ten feet deep with sphagnum, where the monarchs of the forest, covered with mosses and stretched along the ground, were making haste to become peat. Those old books suggested a certain fertility, an Ohio soil, as if they were making a humus for new literatures to spring in. I heard the bellowing of bullfrogs and the hum of mosquitoes reverberating through the thick embossed covers when I had closed the book. Decayed literature makes the richest of all soils.”

These wise words, combined with a bit of cooler spring weather in the Pacific Northwest over the past few days has us dreaming of curling up with a book in one of these cozy personal libraries featured on Apartment Therapy. Get comfy and enjoy.

Source: Brain Pickings and Apartment Therapy

What is home? It can mean a lot of different things to a lot of different people, and animals. An igloo, a nest, a house, a hive—all variations on “home.”

Portland-based artist Carson Ellis recently released a book called Home, that contains a series of illustrations on the idea of “home” and how much it can vary. Ellis is also married to The Decemberists’ Colin Meloy, and the two collaborated on the hugely-popular Wildwood series.

At Househappy, helping people find home is our whole reason for being, so this book really struck a chord with us. We love these sweet drawings. Take a look.

Source: Brain Pickings

Word Up: Book Shelf

Househappy —  August 25, 2014 — Leave a comment

If you’ve ever judged a book by its cover, then you’ll enjoy these clever storage boxes that use hardcover books as a sliding trapdoor.

Designed by Aust & Amelung, the Book Box shelving system allows you to easily remove the book if you want to read it, while still making it easy to enjoy the jacket art as an artistic focal point.

Source: Fast Company

Photos: © Merlin Laumert

Whenever we’re in need of inspiration, we turn to Letters of Note.

The blog features correspondence, including scans of original postcards and notes, between both extraordinary and ordinary people. Among our favorites is the one where Frank Lloyd Wright designed a dog house (for free) after a small boy wrote with the request and Kurt Vonnegut’s advice for humans living in 2088.

Now, the letters are being collected in a new book, published by Chronicle Books on May 6. Included are Queen Elizabeth II’s recipe for drop scones, sent to President Eisenhower, and the first recorded use of the expression “OMG,” in a letter to Winston Churchill.

We can’t wait to pick up a copy. In the meantime, Vonnegut’s 7 steps for better living:

    1. Reduce and stabilize your population.
    2. Stop poisoning the air, the water, and the topsoil.
    3. Stop preparing for war and start dealing with your real problems.
    4. Teach your kids, and yourselves, too, while you’re at it, how to inhabit a small planet without helping to kill it.
    5. Stop thinking science can fix anything if you give it a trillion dollars.
    6. Stop thinking your grandchildren will be OK no matter how wasteful or destructive you may be, since they can go to a nice new planet on a spaceship. That is really mean, and stupid.
    7. And so on. Or else.

Images: © Letters of Note

Every profession has some version of creative block. Even if you’re not currently stuck, it’s always fun to engage in a little artistic exercise.

Danielle Krysa, the wildly creative mind behind the blog The Jealous Curator, interviewed 50 successful international artists for her new book Creative Block. The chunky tome offers nearly 300 pages of insights on how to conquer self-doubt, stay motivated, and get new ideas to flow.

Photos: Buy Olympia