RIY is the New DIY

Curtained Storage by Anne Kieffer

Early this morning I came upon Apartment Therapy‘s post about new designers and the designs they recently introduced at the Milan furniture show last week. I commend Max Gillingham-Ryan for showcasing emerging designers from around the world who haven’t yet stolen the spotlight. Take note: I apologize right up front to anyone who would shame me, but I can’t help but look to fresh, new designs for DIY inspiration. Now “DIY” gets a bad rap due to its often slipshod implementation. My DIY philosophy has always been to look around for inspiration, but take it up a level and make it your own. Also, if it looks homemade, forget it. Before I go any further, let me be the first to admit my creations don’t always get past the homemade looking phase.
What I do know from experience is the more times you attempt your DIY design, without looking at a mass produced model, the more your own ideas start to grow and take shape. Don’t be fooled by believing you have to go do design school to be your own designer.

Coat Hooks by Nachacht Designs

Secondly, some readers may not like this but it must be said. If you’re simply going to knock off Pottery Barn, Crate and Barrel, Anthropologie, Ballards or Horchow, why bother? These designs are already being mass produced. Maybe that’s the reason DIY has a bad reputation with most design savvy folks. People are comparing your creation to a manufactured copy of someone else’s own DIY original. Somehow your own creativity gets lost in that mess. My advice to the earnest and ambitious DIY designer is to simply get inspiration from new designs coming from fresh talent, choose a few new pieces that strike your fancy, then give some thoughtful attention to how you would change, alter or tweak it to suit your individual taste and style. Next, make that design a few times over. Let your ideas dictate the final design. Don’t be afraid to showcase your very own designs in your home. There’s no better conversation piece than a one of a kind furnishing.

Sputnik Stools by Sisman

As for the process, and how to know when you’re done; for me, there’s something that just clicks when I know a look is right. It may not be right for anyone else, but when it clicks for me, at that point, nothing else works. That moment is when you feel the full glory of creating something nobody else has.

Traffic Jam by Vukasin Vukobratovic (Serbia)

Hybrid aluminum/plywood furniture by Kazunori Matsumura:

Posted in diy, furniture, inspiration, nightstand, restyle, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

3 Responses to RIY is the New DIY

  1. Cat says:

    those stools! that coat stand! those tables! I want to copy them exactly

  2. I totally agree with your knock off philosophy. I struggle with this constantly….what came first the chicken or the egg? Do we knock off mass production b/c it’s mass produced? or are our ideas stifled by the constant bombardment of what we see everywhere? It’s really hard to get those original ideas out amid all the chatter of mass production. Kudos to those featured in this post….they succeeded fabulously!

  3. shellyleer says:

    It’s a dilemma.Originality is WAY cooler than anything else.