Sunday, 11 April 2010

Giveaway: Sibella Court's Etcetera

Sibella Court is an Australian stylist whose New York Loft I remember from Living Etc a few years ago because of its gorgeous tin ceiling tiles. So, I'm not surprised to find that her new book, Etcetera, is just my style. The book is beautifully presented, using brown paper, some translucent pages and a typewriter font typeface. This book focuses mainly on the small-scale - encouraging us to imagine our homes as 'a personal museum' and style it with lots of little collections. Not one for the minimalists perhaps, but any book which mentions glassine, origami paper and vintage French ribbons has my vote. A visit to the car boot sale next weekend? I think so.

The white flags look similar to these Mexican paper picados.

At first my favourite item here was the tiny taped leaf, but now I'm wondering whether I should try hanging a lamp off a picture rail as I'm always knocking my table lamp onto the floor (maybe using some silk flex?)

This was my favourite idea - simple brown paper cuffs for glass jars.

Originally, I had this book lined up for a giveaway - but I love it so much I'm keeping it for myself! Luckily for you, I've procured an extra copy. This week I'm having a trial run for my blogging course, so I'm asking for a little input from my readers. To enter the competition, please answer the following; what are things you love and hate about blogs? For me, I like large photos, and my pet hate is truncated or partial RSS feeds - there's nothing which will make me unsubscribe quicker. Good luck! The competition will close at midnight (GMT) on Monday.

Update: the winner is The Crafty Currant. Congratulations!

Photos by Chris Court, courtesy of Murdoch Books.



First of all I love the images from that book! Very inspiring!

I love big photos, too and blogs that are updated daily.
I like cleaner looking blogs, some advertisements are okay, but when both sides of the blog are packed with too many advertisements, that kinda takes away from the pictures I came to see and I get antsy to leave fast :D

Amanda {Mocking Bird} said...

I love finding new things, I love original content. I like it when people share more of themselves and their work.
Yes, I will unsubscribe truncated RSS posts too. It's pointless!
I really don't like seeing the same thing posted on 10 different blogs.

thecraftycurrant said...

I love looking at people's photos so my good and bad points are photo related.
My favourite thing is when the author takes photos that match the style of their blog. My least favourite thing about blogs is when there is no personality of the author in their picture ... especially if they just copy and paste from the web ... boo!!!

You Are My Fave said...

This book looks so pretty.

Concerning blogs, I like big photos and not too much wordiness. Yet I like to see the author's personality shine through. You don't have to be wordy to do that!

I don't like when no credit is given for images and I don't like haughtiness.

la casita said...

I do like big pictures, clear contents and humor, continuity, when pictures and txt reflect the personality.

I dislike endless, pointless text.
Bloggers that sneakily try to sell third party stuff, too much stuff in the page (like to many different styles mixed together, trillions of colours and patterns, flashy stuff).
ads on the left and right side.

BTW last week I saw that book and I was so tempted to buy it! I love her style!

la casita said...

PS: and most importantly I really can't stand people who snatch pictures from you and then they use it on their blogs without asking permission!!!


BIG photos! I love.
Looking into other peoples worlds I love.
Too many word in one go, I don't like, as I like to read a few with my cup of Tea! Kx

Ali said...

I love blogs which make you feel as if you are a guest in the space of a real person. Something of themselves in the mix. Blogs which tell you the story behind the pretty pictures. Posts which send me off on a little journey of discovery.

Things I dislike? Empty, sponsored posts. Blogs which are little more than an extended sales pitch. And thise dreaded truncated RSS feeds. And also, bloggers who don't respond to comments (I know we can't do this every time, but it shows such disregard for readers if a blogger never takes the time to do it).

Phew, I'm evidently feeling extra-opinionated tonight! I saw a copy of the book at Anthropologie. It was love.

Callie Grayson said...

love big photos for me too. and not to long.... when its over 15 photos it get a bit much.

I wish everyone would link their photos or give credit where they came from..... if you forget, say so, most likely someone will know and you can add later. I love to click on the link to find new blogs, artist or photographer.


C said...

I like having a glimpse into the life of someone else, its always interesting to see what others are up to. Well taken pictures are great, pictures that invite you to dream are wonderful and I love reading about funny little encounters or escapades that the author may have gotten into!

I really don't like lectures and self-righteousness:)

Something White said...

Hello from Belgium :)
I do already have a copy of that lovely inspiring book, but yet I´d like to say thank you for this opportunity to win such a big gift and also for your openness about blogging!

What I like about blogs:
- inspiring things
- interesting pictures
- nice layouts
- and most important: getting in touch with so many people around the world who have the same passions/interests in life.

What I do not like so much about blogs:
- this kind of competition: who has the biggest amount of followers and receives most comments
- stupid exaggerations of all kinds (words, over the top compliments of fellow-bloggers ´o, you´re sooooo talented´...)
- the fact that others (mostly Americans, but sometimes others too) call me ´Sweetie´, ´Sweetheart´, ´Honey´ aso! For a Belgian-down-to-earth that´s really too much of a good thing.

So, good luck to you and thank you for all posts which are always a pleasure to read. And I mean it.
Best regards, Marjolijn

Cat said...

Love the idea of little collections (particularly because I have troubles committing to one thing in particular ;).

Love - pictures with some supporting text but not a lot...I like to be quickly updated :). Blogs that are updated regularly.

Hate - wordiness...the novel long posts lose my attention fast. If you have a lot to say, break it up into smaller posts, part 1, 2, 3 (plus this would make me keep coming back to learn more!!!!)

Feltbug said...

I love the way blogs take you on an unplanned journey and that each blog is a creative expression of the individual(s) writing the blog. I don't like too many adverts and in particular animated ones which are a distraction when trying to read a blog.

Good luck with your bloggers course :)

uglygirl said...

I like correct spelling and grammar. If only people would use a spell checker and learn the difference between "it's" and "its", "bias" and "biased", "cliche" and "cliched", "viola" and "voila". I also don't understand when people using Blogger don't hyperlink (is that the word?) their links - it's so easy to do.

I agree with everyone else about the truncated RSS feed, photo size and uncredited images!

Shep said...

i love the inspiration i get from browsing blogs of any kind: craft, photography, cooking, healthy living, etc. but sometimes i hate how much time i spend doing it! i have a solid balance of work and play but sometimes i slip up and spend too much time on the play :)

twin xl said...

I love lots of photos & images to look at. Since I'm more visual, I could pass on text-only posts.

Rachel said...

ohh, how i would love to win the book! i like interior ideas that are not complicated and can be done by yourself... thanks for this wonderful giveaway..

what i love in blogs - collage of photos beautifully put together!

what i dislike - printed background that makes it difficult to read the text and view the photos clearly.

Clare B said...

I love white backgrounds - it takes a lot for me to read a blog with a black or blue background. Big photos, interesting stories - but not too much.

Sophia said...

I love interesting content, of course, and a clean look: if I'm going to be 'backtracking' through a recent find I don't want a chaotic background giving me a headache as I scroll through.

I really dislike when blogs have music on them, it just reminds me of myspace. If you want to share your music put some youtube links in a sidebar or something or keep it in your profile, I don't need to be blasted with five seconds of music before I can find the thing and turn it off.
- Sophia.

Caroline, No. said...

Like you, I love large pictures. Some of the blogs I read have such wonderful content then teeny tiny pictures. Such a waste! I love high quality photos too, no blurriness, bad picture balance...

Oh, I really don't like pictures continually being refinished in photo apps on the iPhone, either. So annoying.

Other than that: fresh content. Personality. People who tell me interesting things.


Tonia said...

I love that a click can take you to original and like-minded people across the oceans. I hate that I don't have enough time to do more of it!

sammy and glenn: pacha design said...

we like simplicity when it comes to blogs - not keen on too many ads, they are a bit distracting.

big photos are nice, interesting unique content, credits and links (especially when you have used someone elses photographs) and, like most people are saying, a little personality about the author - blogs that seem to be just advertising "stuff" are okay, but it's nice to get a feel for who is writing the blog.

we've been meaning to get this book for a while now - great giveaway Lynne.

noella said...

i loove finding inspirational images just when I'm in a dunk and in need of a serious dosage!
I don't like when at the bottom of a post they put that 'you might like these: and put thumbnails of previous posts images..

ooh really hope I am lucky today!

Little Miss B said...

I love blogs that make feel like you are being shown a little secret or part of a story. I dislike posts that are negative.

Nadia said...

I love pictures of books or whatever items the blogger is writing about - visuals truly do make the blog pop. And I hate the feed at the side that shows who just visited the site - what is the point? Its distracting. And I don't care for blogs that are cluttered with boxes/buttons of info everywhere - it just does not look good. A cleaner, more streamlined blog is tops in my opinion.


Alex said...

My pet hate about blogs is too many words, particularly those badly written. Large reams of text put me off and I quickly click away.

What do I love? Being a bit of a voyeur, blogs offer a glimpse into someone else's life which I find addictive! I can't get enough of nosing through images of beautiful homes, opinions, and family ephemera. If you're going to write a blog - make it yours!

Anonymous said...

I love a distinct voice, personality and opinion, regardless of whether or not I agree with it.

I dislike extreme tmi - I don't want to hear about Aunt Agnes' Sciatica and too many adverts in the columns!

Haley said...

I love finding new things and reading really insightful posts but nothing too too long.

I too hate truncated rss feeds, although I do subscribe to one recipe blog that posts the intro to the recipe and the picture and then you have to click over for the recipe itself and that's ok. Also, blogs that just repost what every other blog is posting are big snooze.

Polly said...

Ooh I hope I win this! It looks beautiful :)

I like:
- Blogs with lots of pictures
- Blogs where the blogger has actually taken some of the pictures
- Blogs with big pictures
- Finding out little snippets of other people's lives (I'm so nosy!)

I dislike:
- Complainy, negative posts. Or braggy posts
- black/ dark backgrounds. I like clean, white backgrounds
- Music on a blog
- Bloggers who just constantly reblog things that they have seen on other blogs or websites. I like some original content too


// S said...

No matter how great the content, I have a really hard time reading blogs that are poorly designed (bright backgrounds, weird navigation...).

I love blogs with consistently inspiring content/images... with as little filler as possible. A little personality helps too! Those are the blogs I come back to over and over again :)

midcenturylass said...

I love people's personalities coming through and their enthusiasm (which lifts me on a not-so-good-day) and beautifully simple and big photos.

I really dislike unimaginative postings to fill up a day, especially those that are just copies from another blog in their blogroll!

Allison said...

i love reading blogs! it's so interesting to see what other people like and dislike about them.

i like:

*original content
*photos taken by the blogger
*when the blogger's voice is strong, and i know who is blogging

i dislike:

*negative blog posts. i like bloggers to be real, but there's no need for them to be really negative.
*lots of ads. i think sponsored ads, chosen by the blogger, are ok because they usually fit with the overall content of the blog.

Down and Out Chic said...

I like a blog with positivity and a writer with a strong voice. I do not like blogs that use posts as soap boxes for what they don't like about other blogs or when posts get really negative and whiny. I like when I can sense that someone is genuine with what they're posting and I also adore bloggers that credit their photos!

Colette said...

I'm quite new to blogging - I don't even know what a truncated RSS feed is.

Things I love - taking a peek into someones real world, pictures of their homes and projects they are working on along with comments on what makes them tick. Some people surprise me with their honesty and openness, but I love it!

Things I hate - blogs full of images lifted from other websites / blogs, dark backgrounds and bad spelling and grammar. Too much fuss and too many adverts down the sides.

Bristol Parenting Cafe said...

Things I like:

Inspiring/original photographs. The way great blogs are able to direct me to other exciting blogs/posts. Also love an inspiring header that changes from time to time but still retains an identity.

Things I don't like:

When subject matter is too broad, so too much of everything rather than specialised in something particular. Messy backgrounds/too much different fonts/colours. I agree with a previous comment in sometimes the blog community can be a bit cliquey with lots of over-admiration and back-patting but that makes me sound ungenerous! I think sometimes for new readers it can be a bit alienating though. I hope that's helpful and makes sense!

Pinecone Camp said...

Sibella is such a talented stylist. Love her apartment - I've seen it in a few mags now. I've got to pick up her book now! Love your blog. Thoroughly enjoying my break from photo shop to read it!

AmandaJean said...

I love big photos with comments on what the photo means to the blogger. I love reading about the joy that people find in their everyday lives. I do not like when people use photos and don't credit the source.

Bec said...

That is such a beautiful book!

I like clean, simple blogs with beautiful photography. My favourite ones are those where the blogger shares their own content as well as highlighting that of others. I like glimpses into other peoples lives and lots and lots of inspiration.

I also love exploring the blogrolls of my favourite bloggers and going off on adventures!

Dislikes: posting pictures with no attribution and link given to the original source, this is enough to put me off a blog completely; truncated RSS feeds; competitions that involves jumping through hoops rather than a simple comment; bloggers that worry too much about what other people think; too many sponsored posts; and finally seemingly endless posts of pictures.

Tigerlilly Quinn said...

i'm not sure if you'll see this but I nominated you for the sunshine awards :) xoxo

Chelsey said...

I love, love, love when people take creative photos of their surroundings-- their kitchens after they've just baked, or the new little plants growing in their gardens, or their tousle-haired babies. I am not a fan of truncated RSS feeds either, or of uncredited photographs-- I find it immensely disrespectful. (Although I appreciate bloggers that at least admit they're not sure where it came from.)

renaissance said...

I also like large photographs and I have two pet hates, one being music on a blog and the other being a blog that causes me a problem. Sometimes I'll click onto a blog that then refuses to close down and just keeps re-opening a new page. I understand that this isn't the bloggers fault but it drives me crazy and I never re-visit.

Lumo said...

I have seen her homes in Living ETC and Inside Out. They are stunning, so many great details. I wanted ot order the book from Amazon, but it was out of stock in England and cost over $ 80 in US Amazon. Hopefully I will win...

What I do like about blogs

-getting in touch with new people around the world who share the same interests
- new, inspiring things to read about
- interesting pictures taken by the blogger

What I don't like so much

-too many blogs are just collections of pretty photos taken by somebody else. I prefer picutres taken by the blogger.

-text only blogs usually don't interest me

Hannah said...

I love getting little hits of inspiration through my day - or finding something extra special that leaves you feeling like you know something secret, something that only people in the 'know' will have discovered.
I don't like it when you click on a link and it takes you straight there without opening a new window...I don't want to get lost from the blog!


Min said...

I don't like partial feeds either, I won't subscribe to a blog with one, except Smitten Kitchen. I also don't like it when the photos don't downsize on my iPhone. But I love blogs with original content and a creative outlook on repeated content.

Frangipani Decor said...

While large photos are delicious to view, they take ages to upload sometimes and that ruins what little baby-free browsing time I get. Medium sized pics that can be enlarged on clicking work best, I think. I also love bloggers that give you an insight into their work and how they make their homes so beautiful. Those lessons are warmly appreciated.

I don't like blogs that have backgrounds that slow down loading time, lots of animation or bad spelling. You don't have to be a writer to use spell check - it only takes a minute and makes a big difference to the reader.

Charlotte said...

Ahh too late - but I got the free mini-magazine with Livingetc a couple of weeks ago.

I love those papercuffs - I have a load of unlabelled kilner jars that were waiting for a splash of blackboard paint.

Anyway - I hate it when you have to enter those 'captcha' codes to leave comments (how many rogue spam commenters are there in the world?). I'm not keen on simply photo blogs - I like to know why that image is being shared - just a couple of lines at least.

Oh, and those blogs where every post ends with 'subscribe to me'/ 'vote for me here' etc.

Love lots of links - either in a round-up post or blogroll (mine is getting excessive). And commenters too - I try to comment every post I read and like and always reply to new commenters.

Charlotte xx

Anonymous said...

etcetera was on my list of books to read/buy! awesome giveaway :]

love about blogs: personality, vulnerability, inspiration.
hate about blogs: partial rss feeds & no personality or originality.

Anonymous said...

I love a clean layout...there's nothing worse than a messy blog with buttons everywhere and links everywhere! :)

*Trisha* said...

I love your blog :)

Of all the blogs I read, I nominated you as one of my top 5 favorites, and an award comes with it... if you want it (^_^)

Thanks for sharing such lovely things with us


Melissa said...

I love the new ideas or great finds that different bloggers highlight. I'm not a fan of oversharing -- I like a bit of personality in a blog, but I'm usually not inclined to want to know the minute details of the writer's life.

sheer whimsy said...

love the paper cuffs!!! sooo lovely

Fabulously french said...

Love the paper cuffs. I love blogs that are about them and the things that they love.

I am not a fan of long posts with lots of words.....

Leeann x

nath said...

this book looks lovely.

i really like to see some of the writer's personality in the writing and pictures. now, deep breath - i don't like endless you should buy this now type posts, or poor vocabulary and punctuation, or links that haven't been hyperlinked, or blogs that have word verification AND blogger aproval before publishing, it's a bit too belts and braces.

aneyefordetail said...

Some things I do NOT like about blogs:
1) type face too small! also, the color the type blending into the background
2) I agree: those bits and pieces in RSS feed are so frustrating
3)long winded, going nowhere paragraphs... not to mention terrible grammar and sentence structure

I DO like:
1) The very basic premise of blogs! It is wonderful to be so connected to so many like-minded people!
2) Love getting comments, esp. the well thought out ones.

Francesca said...

Oo this book looks lovely!!!

I love blogs that give you an instant and vibrant look into someone's unique personality, style, viewpoint, etc. without overwhelming you. carefully chosen photographs, meaningful but not overbearing writing, moderate amounts of everything so as not to intimidate half the audience.

Dislikes? CLUTTERED, tense visuals! Such as layering patterned backgrounds with elaborate borders, fancy fonts, AND busy photos. all at once. EW. And especially text that is too close to the background color, such as light grey on white or tan on black. how can people choose colors unreadable even to those of us with healthy eyesight?

Liz said...

Hm.. I love new shops that I hadn't discovered yet. I don't like it when one blog updates with 4/5 posts a day (or is that just me?)

mn said...

Like: large photos and finding out new sources for things like furniture, antiques, art or handmade things.

Dislike: flashing ads that visually disrupt the page; wordiness;
and re-posting the same photos other blogs have posted during the same time frame

oh, hello friend. said...

that book looks so amazing!! :) great question!

likes: i like big images too, for sure. blogs with good original content.

peeve: music starting when i enter a blog - immediate close window for me! and like many here: when people don't credit properly or at all. i really do my best to find the original source for a photo but when i cant, i just ask the readers to help me if they know.

i've never seen a truncated or partial rss feed - why do those happen?

rosanguyen said...

I love personal and photo filled blogs, one in which they can talk about themself and still have photos.
I dislike annoying layouts, which are poorly structured. Its quite irritating when you're reading a blog with tiny 8 sized font of bright yellow on a white background for example.

Rhianne said...

wow, great giveaway!

I love the creativityand inspiration in blogging, the sense of community and how amazing some bloggers really are.

I hate when credit isn't given on images and I don't like negative posts either.

tammy said...

i love blogs that are quietly inspirational, original, and reflective of the author's personality. pet peeves are low-quality images and large, colorful and crazy fonts that are difficult to read.

jane said...

I love blogs and the fact that so many people are sharing bits of their lives and the people, places and things they love. I find it so inspiring to look at my favorite blogs and find new ones. Looking at blogs reminds me to enjoy what is wonderful in my life and to keep creating happiness and beauty for myself and my family.

I dislike print that is minute and posts that don't give sources or credit for photos.

Thanks for sharing photos from the book. Silbella Court has a wonderful aesthetic.

Anna said...

I Love: blogs that mix hand drawn or handwritten things with gorgeous photos. Or anything that helps to show the author's personality and voice.

I Hate: rambling, super text heavy posts.

Lexi said...

I just love your blog and hope you don't mind that I have nominated you for The Sunshine Award on my blog! Keep up the great posts!

Lexi :)

designfynder said...

hanging lamp + picture rail = ingenious. love it!