Collecting interests with the help of pins


A few years ago, I found myself in a full-fledged midlife ... opportunity.

Like many people, I have had some great gigs in my life. I could pay the bills and occasionally buy something indulgent. However, I found myself on a happiness hunt. I was totally stuck on what could bring me more authentic smiles. Should I move, start a new career? If yes, doing what and where?

Fast-forward several days into my stupor and my Faughter (friend-daughter) brought me a huge Styrofoam board and plopped down a stack of magazines with a pile of thumb tacks with the hope that it would spark my withering mojo.

“This is your inspiration board, have at it. Pin up whatever makes you happy,” she said with a hopeful grin.

For the next few hours, I flipped through the magazines and pondered. I didn’t want to backpack through Italy or make cupcakes with cheesecake frosting. The sculpted 20 something bare-chested man in the perfume ad was tempting but not thumbtack-worthy. Rummaging through a handful of magazines felt too limited for me. Plus, I was afraid that if I pinned up some trivial images, the Universe would fulfill my shallow wishes. Wouldn’t it be pitiful if my hunt for happiness was halted by some passionless pins.

Two months later, I chucked the empty board down the basement steps.

With this history, it probably won’t come as a surprise that I didn’t leap on the Pinterest parade ... that is, until recently.

For all of you slow adapters, like me, you probably know Pinterest as the online vision board, and you’re right. However, that’s not what made me drink the Kool-Aid.

What made me convert into a passionate pinner is that it’s an idea factory.

If you are looking for concrete-topped dining tables or recipes for summer cocktails, just type it up in the subject line and voila! A visual mecca of inspired pictures pop up. It is like having a personal shopper with kick-ass taste at your disposal.

Another big plus, is that it also really helps you solidify what makes your pulse quicken. My artist’s spirit can make me a little wonder-welmed.

Recently, I created my first Pinterest board for my new nest. Truthfully, at first I was reluctant and suffered from flashbacks to the dreaded blank white board of yesteryear still mocking me.

However, I soon fell into a happiness haze as I trolled through tons of tantalizing imagery and began giddily pinning up some of my favorite looks.

My board started to feel like a grown up dollhouse that I wanted to move into. Remember the Rorschach inkblot test? Well, Pinterest is the online version of that. It reveals bits about you to yourself.

Through trolling, I discovered that I am pattern-phobic and I am a lover of natural and neutral things. I’m currently crushing on Carrara Marble and I am a total sucker for galvanized pots.

It also became super clear that I have an unnamed sense of style, which I have since labeled “beach bum couture.”

Apparently, there is mystical power in the pin.

Amy Archer

Amy Archer is owner of Sarasota-based Creating Inspired Design and writes the Barefooted Designer blog. She can be reached by email.
Last modified: December 3, 2015
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