we met Grace and ate yummy naan–Design*Sponge book signing in Austin

by Dana on October 17, 2011

Saturday evening Casey and I headed downtown for a dinner date night…and a book signing (thanks for coming along my dear. I know it wasn’t your top idea of “fun”).
Grace Bonney from the popular site Design*Sponge was at the Austin Anthropologie signing her new book, Design*Sponge at Home. Is there a cuter spot for this type of get-together? I could take photos all day of the merchandise (of course the lighting isn’t my favorite, so bear with me.)
We got there 10 minutes early and got in line to buy the book…not realizing it was also the line for signing books. Duh. So uh, we were 2nd in line. Pretty snazzy.
Grace is totally adorable and soooo tiny.
I felt huge next to her with my baby belly (and growing chest–the perks of pregnancy?)
There were all types of people waiting in line and mingling around.
Even a few cute kids. I first took a pic of the girl on the left and the little one on the right said “aw, I want to be in a picture.” Sure! Haah. She probably thought I was some official photographer and she’d show up in a magazine. I guess being a blog isn’t so bad.
There were a few tables set-up with DIY crafts.
And treats of course!
We were on our way to dinner but we had to nibble on red-velvet and carrot cake.
A token shot in their cute photo-op background. Feels like Yo Gabba Gabba. There’s definitely a party in my 22 week tummy.
Casey was a very good sport, carrying my book around (and paying for it), waiting while I took pictures and chatted. He actually enjoyed the spectacle of it all though. And apparently he was trying to score brownie points with Grace, wearing his red-orange shirt.
As we were leaving I ran into my friend Courtney, who I hung out with at the Pioneer Woman Book signing two years ago! Too funny (and those old pics make me miss long hair and bangs).
As we left there were still plenty of people in line,
waiting behind the cute line markers. Happy Day Garland in sparkly cardstock? Gotta make some.
Then we were off to our favorite Indian restaurant: the Clay Pit, on Guadalupe near UT campus. There are a few other Indian places in the Austin area but this is by far the best. The Korma sauce has amazing cashew nuttiness (it’s great with the lamb). I also recommend the 3-cheese or the cream-cheese and jalapeno naans. They’re meals in themselves. Yum. I want more now. It’s always busy there so make a reservation. We forgot that once and waited an hour.
And for dessert we got italian ice/frozen custard gelatis from Ritas. Love that place too. Holy cow I was full.

So I plopped myself on the couch and checked out the new book…earmarking a few things to share. It’s an inspiring book and lovely to flip through. But I have to admit….I like about 3/4 of it; the other 1/4 I could do without or could use more of the parts I like.
The book is a compilation of Grace’s favorite things from the Design*Sponge site. It opens with Sneak Peeks into people’s homes. This section is great. It’s like Pinterest in a book. Many inspirational ideas and fun to read about the people behind the space.
One day I’ll have a yellow door…and I’ll try out wall moldings like those below.
- The next section is DIY projects. There are some fun/cool projects but I miss having more detailed step-by-step info with pictures.
- Then there are DIY Basics, with lists of info on some basic DIY projects….how to hang wallpaper, how to rewire a lamp, sewing basics, etc.

- Next up: the Flower Workshop–my least favorite part of the book. I was hoping for more of a Martha Stewart hand-made flower type thing. But it shows various real flower arrangements–which is fine–just not my style of decor. I found it kind of boring.

- And finally, my favorite section: Before and After projects. Not sure I’ll ever tire of seeing these sort of pics and could have used more of this section:
A planter made from an old file cabinet? Cool!
Overall it’s a beautiful book and would be great for your creative library or the coffee table. It was a treat to read Grace’s intro and be inspired by her journey. She’s been blogging for 7 years and started out just like you and me…with a little old blog on Blogger.com. It’s amazing to see where it can take you!
Were any of you there on Saturday as well?

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