Summer Reading from Our Studio



Summer feels like its been a long time coming. With that harsh winter, those late spring snowstorms, a chilly kick-off to the season, and the current political landscape that makes most of us cringe in the very least, we’re all in need of an escape, both literally and figuratively. With bookended holiday weekends approaching (the Fourth smack in the middle of the week? what do we do?) many of us are planning our escapes from the studio and the city, so we took a quick survey in the office to see what everyone will be delving into on their hard-earned time off.

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A little NYC history for architecture buffs

The Address is an intriguing bit of historical fiction centered around one of Manhattan’s iconic buildings, the Dakota. Descriptions of the unique building and its history mingle with a peek into the lives of the characters who live there, a hundred years apart from each other in the 1880s and 1980s. New Yorkers, architecture buffs, and fans of mystery will enjoy this read.

“Lively and detail rich—set against the backdrop of NYC’s infamous Dakota building—with a thread of mystery that makes it easy to enjoy, hard to put down.”—Family Circle

Politically-inspired tales of pushing back

The Power is an appropriate bit of speculative fiction that reacts to society’s history of men in roles of power to explore what would happen if women gained a physical advantage over men. Would the world be transformed into a nurturing, empathetic utopia? Or do women and men who are in places of power inevitably exploit it? On the heels of the #MeToo movement and Hulu’s recent release of Margaret Atwood’s The Handmaid’s Tale this book couldn’t be a more perfectly timed – or necessary – challenge of the status quo.

“It’s really well written and gripping … And it resonates with the rage I’m feeling in this current political climate.” —one of our own Design Works staffers 

The Hate U Give has nabbed several awards and, despite its classification as a fictional young adult novel, has resonated with readers of all ages. Soon to be translated for film, this story follows the life of a young girl between two worlds – the poor neighborhood she lives in and the fancy suburban prep school she attends – and shows how both are shattered following the shooting of her childhood friend by a police officer.

“There are those books that are important and timely, worthy of reading because of the social and/or political message that they send. They fill a gap in the market; they make waves. They need to exist. And there are other books that are well-written, emotionally-charged and unputdownable – books that are not important as such, just really f***ing good. But, on occasion, you find one of those rare wonderful creatures that is both important AND really f***ing good.” —review on

A little something on the lighter side for all of us trying to adult

Everything I know about Love is a spot-on, wildly funny, and sometimes heart-breaking autobiographical account of growing up, growing older, and navigating all kinds of love along the way. For all of us trying to find our way through the world as adults, this book will strike a chord.

“Her take is refreshingly honest, hilarious, and self-deprecating. I was laughing out loud on the subway!” – another Design Works staffer

No matter how you choose to escape this weekend, whether with a comedic laugh or something that inspires, we hope you soak up every minute of it. From all of us here at the studio, we wish you happy reading! And an even happier holiday.

Elevate Your Space Using Flowers!


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Flowers  are an inexpensive way to elevate your space! They come in many colors and sizes that can complement any space beautifully. Bring in natural elements to liven up your space with floral tones .

Here are some ideas:


Show us how you incorporate flowers in your home by tagging us @designworksinternational!

In the name of print & pattern,



Trending: Pastels


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Pastels are making a huge statement this summer☀️. If you want to dabble with color, pastels are perfect for you. Pastels are soft but they can make a statement. The eye is immediately drawn to pastels because of their delicate and playful qualities. Pastels are 𝕗𝕦𝕟 and commonly used in interior spaces, fashion and accessories! 

See how below ⇣

P A S T E L + I N T E R I O R


P A S T E L + F A S H I O N


P A S T E L + A C C E S S O R I E S


What pastel items are you currently obsessed with?

In the name of print & pattern,


Colorful Buildings Around the World


Color is everywhere and there are numerous buildings around the world that are Instagram worthy! Just pack a suitcase and delve into your adventurous side to see these unique buildings.

Here are our top 10 favorites

So, what are you waiting for? Go explore and tag #designworksinternational to be featured in our next post!

In the name of print & pattern,


Redoing Your Room on a Budget


Everyone needs change. Changing your surroundings can give you a fresh perspective and it can be fun! Revamping your room can be easy and super affordable. Learn how to redo your room on a budget by following these tips.

Change out your pillowsPillows come in so many textures and colors! You can make your own in less than 15 minutes. All you need is fabric, no-sew fabric glue, and poly-fil!

  1. Choose the fabric you want and cut two squares a little bit bigger than your desired size. Fold each side down for a clean edge before gluing them together.
  2. Glue three sides of the fabric together, leaving one side unglued so that you can stuff it.
  3. Finally, stuff the pillow with poly-fil and glue together the final side (for extra durability, sew the sides of the pillow).
  4. (Optional) For texture, simply glue on pom-poms or tassels to even make your pillow one-of-a-kind!

Here are some pillows for inspiration!

Add wall decorIf you are renting a place and not allowed to paint your walls, this is a great solution! Urban Outfitters and Anthropologie always have wall decor that is to die for. Check out their sale for affordable decor. Here are some of our favorites (all under $50). Also, links are under each picture!


Paint your furniture. Paint can give an object new life! All you need is sandpaper and paint. Paint + primer paint gets the job done in fewer coats! First, sand down your furniture so that the paint will have something to grip on. Then, just paint away! (Optional: switching out the knobs)

Here are some color inspo:


We hope that you feel inspired to make a change!

In the name of print & pattern,


How to Add a POP of Color to Any Outfit


If you struggle with boring outfits, this is the article for you! It’s easy to add a POP of color to your wardrobe so that you can show the world your ~fun~ side. All you need is a few simple accessories, creativity, and your beautiful self!

Colors and textures can catch the attention of anyone and there are endless possibilities to take your outfit to the next level!  Take these tips to look colorful at your next outing. 

EARRINGS: Earrings can be a statement, so why not make them FUN! Pom-pom and tassel earrings are my favorite because they come in so many colors. Here are some for inspiration.



ESPADRILLES: Espadrilles are a huge trend this summer because they are cute and comfortable. They can easily change a bland outfit! Here are some of my favorites.



BANDANAS: Bandanas are inexpensive, colorful and can complete any outfit. They can be used as a headband for a bad hair day or even function as a unique belt!



Hope these tips inspired you to live life colorfully!

In the name of print & pattern,


Trend Spotting at ICFF: Materials


ICFF is always a great place to meet new makers and see what shapes and materials they’re experimenting with. Check out a few of our favorite trends, both new and evolving, below.ICFF Trends.001.jpeg

Raw finishes are trending in a big way. Light wood, leather, and cork are some of the natural materials being used in home goods and left in a raw, unfinished look for an organic and casual vibe.

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Mixed metals have been showing up for some time in cabinetry hardware (and later in fixtures) but we haven’t seen this variety in vessel sinks ever before. Brass, copper, or gunmetal: which is your pick?


An oldie but a goodie is bouclé fabric. Soft, nubby, and so very Coco Chanel, it pairs beautifully with rounder upholstery shapes.

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Outdoor and indoor furniture alike is being shown in woven forms. Colorful, playful, global, and slightly nostalgic, these pieces take their cues from both vintage outdoor furnishings and woven textiles pieces. Made of string, wicker, plastic, metal, and rubber, they’re fun, unique, and compelling structures that play with positive and negative space.