Has The War in Ukraine Changed Your Mind About Traveling to Europe this Summer?
Hi, I’m Gabrielle Blair and this is my newsletter. It’s completely free to access and read, but if you feel so moved to support my work, please consider a paid newsletter subscription: just $5/month or save money with the $50/annual sub. You can also go way above and beyond by becoming a Founding Member at $75. Or, some of you have let me know you’d rather send money directly via Paypal and Venmo (@gabrielle-blair). Thank you! Seriously, thank you. Support from readers keeps this newsletter ad and sponsor-free.
A Really Good Link List For You
Hey there. How are you holding up? I’ve had a couple of very-online-weeks where I feel glued to social media and watching headlines (with some breaks to update you on our bathtub fix). I know that’s true for a lot of people. Here are a few things I’ve saved for you:
1) Yesterday was International Women’s Day. And the best thing I saw all day, by far, was a Twitter account called Gender Pay Gap App. Every time a company would would tweet a rah-rah message about women, the bot account would retweet the message and report on whether or not the company pays women employees as much as they pay men employees.
So brilliant and fascinating. In response to some companies, the account would report the pay was equal, or that women are paid more than men. When the disparity was really big, with men getting paid more than women, the company would often delete their original tweet (out of embarrassment, I assume). Such a smart way to call out hypocrisy, simply using publicly available information.
If you want to celebrate women, pay them!
2) A helpful explainer about commodity markets from SharonSaysSo. For anyone interested in inflation and how current events are affecting prices, you may find it useful.
3) The Smithsonian announced it’s returning its collection of Benin Bronzes to Nigeria, where they were looted by the British in an 1897 raid. I’m very interested in this story, and curious if it will become a model for other art and artifact collections stolen via colonialism. The agreement includes an exhibit of the bronzes that will be curated by Nigerians and will live in Washington D.C..
4) I appreciate this series from Meg Conley featuring writing from Ukrainian women. Really meaningful stories.
5) There’s a lot of junk on Twitter, but a lot of good stuff too. I like threads like this, that walk me through how a particular expert is thinking about current events.
6) A happy, wholesome review of what it’s like to dine at a Michelin starred restaurant. A calming joy to read.
7) I gained some insight into what the world is feeling right now when I read this essay by Eve Ettinger called Have We Been Thinking About Burnout All Wrong? If you think you may be experiencing burnout, definitely give it a read.
8) I’ve been wearing Levi’s 501 Original (no-stretch) jeans for the past few years, and I need a new pair. The women’s version of 501 Originals runs around $100, but the men’s version of 501 Originals is only $35. Should I try the men’s? Anyone out there tried them both?
9) Really enjoyed this thread on words that are similar but not the same and how to tell them apart. Pairs like: Forego/Forgo; Complement/Compliment; Stationery/Stationary; Brooch/Broach; Peak/Peek; Climactic/Climatic; License/License; Advice/Advise.
10) The data on this chart makes me pretty furious. I can not fathom why so many Americans are so resistant to universal healthcare. We currently pay a much higher price than we would pay for universal healthcare, and our results are much worse. We have been lied to. Advocate for universal healthcare, do not fear it.
11) Something happier: 107 years after it sank, scientists have discovered the explorer ship called Endurance, 3000 meters under the sea in Antartica — and it’s in remarkably good condition. Very cool!
Design Mom Office Hours & Design Mom Retreat
Office Hours appointments are available for March and for April — feel free to book yours. Not sure what Office Hours are? Here’s my blog post that will answer your questions and give you info on gifting a meeting, or booking a scholarship meeting.
I’ve had lots of design and organization-related meetings lately — I think people are feeling the spring-cleaning itch to tackle some home projects. I’ve also had lots of meetings with people who are traveling to France this summer and are looking for Normandy itinerary advice.
Which reminds me: I was getting close to announcing a Design Mom Retreat in Normandy (as we discussed), but then I paused, because: War in Europe. Do you have opinions on this? With current world events, would you still be interested in and comfortable attending a retreat in Normandy in the May-September range?
Lately on Design Mom
How to Make Mitre-Edged Linen Napkins. This is the clearest, easiest tutorial you will find on this subject.
Picking a Perfume — How to Find your Signature Scent. This primer will give you all the info you need before you head to the perfume counter.
Sheet Pan Dinner: Polenta with Sausage and Peppers. A simple, delicious, satisfying meal — and the only mess is one sheet pan.
That’s all for now. Feel free to comment on anything I mentioned, or whatever’s on your mind. I hope you’re finding some joy this week.