11 Tips for Home Decorating/DIY and Design Blogging from Erin Souder of House of Earnest

Tips & Stories

11 Tips for Home Decorating/DIY and Design Blogging from Erin Souder of House of Earnest

Posted by Erin Souder on 26 Mar 2012

Posted by Erin Souder on 26 Mar 2012

Name: Erin Souder
Location: Columbus, Ohio
Profession: Fashion Retail
Hobby: Home DIY and Design, Blogging
Twitter: @houseofearnest
Website: http://www.houseofearnest.com/


Erin Souder is a shelter blogger, meaning she focuses on home design & DIY. By day, she works in fashion retail for Abercrombie & Fitch, where she sources and develops new yarns for clothing production. She started her blog, House of Earnest, as a place to capture and share creative projects she was drawn to outside of work.

I use Evernote, Everywhere

Having Evernote on my work computer, home computer, iPhone, and iPad makes connecting thoughts and ideas seamless. It also allows me to grab inspiration from anywhere, because you never know when something inspiring might pop up!

I use Evernote for…

Annotated with Skitch

My blog is a place where I can show people the home-related things that inspires me. In total, I’ve been using Evernote for about three years; I started using it to catalog pictures that I took and wanted to add some notes to. Then, a few months ago, I got really busy with work and the blog. I had a new iPhone and I began to evaluate other ways that Evernote could help me with my workload. Since then, I’ve started to use it a lot more often, and it’s become a lifesaver!

You can take inspiration from everywhere and apply it to the smallest things.

The best thing about Evernote is that it helps me catalog virtually anything — websites, contacts, photos, and errant thoughts — nothing slips through the cracks anymore.

For finding home design inspiration


  • Capture furniture and accent pieces over time. Anytime I visit websites like West Elm, Etsy, or check out antique shops, I use the Web Clipper or Evernote’s snapshot feature on my iPhone to capture images. I’m a very visual person, so it helps to throw everything into Evernote and then look at thumbnails of all of the pieces I’ve captured to see what jumps out at me, what items might fit into my home, and which items would look great together. Often, I don’t find two corresponding items (like a side table and matching lamp) in one outing, so it helps to be able to capture things as I spot them and then see what they look like side by side in Evernote.
  • Let one idea generate another. I love how Evernote allows me to go down a rabbit hole of ideas, even if they don’t all come to me at the same time. By constantly capturing inspiration for my home into Evernote, I don’t feel the pressure to act on them immediately. When I’m decorating, I’m not looking for something very specific. Often, my ideas are dormant until I’m visually browsing my account and a lightbulb goes off: this is what I’ve been waiting for!
  • It might be for now, or it might be for later. I clip stuff that I don’t need or might never need, but the beauty of Evernote is that these notes and ideas will always be in my account, and one day they might rise to the occasion. Who knows, maybe someday in the future my mom might mention that she’s looking for a colorful side table and I’ll immediately be able to share my finds in Evernote with her.
  • Don’t just bucket ideas. Tagging allows me to categorize an idea for different purposes. For example, I might tag something as a gift idea, but it might also make a great addition for the ‘Friday Faves’ feature on my blog. Any note can have multiple purposes.

Above: web clipping, drafting posts, and sharing a home find via Twitter

For work


  • I freed myself from being chained to my work computer. Now, when I receive emails that I think I might need to respond to after I get home, I simply send them to my Evernote account, where I can review anything work-related later, without actually being in front of my work computer, or logging into my work email. I use the Outlook add-on, which makes sending things to Evernote totally seamless.
  • I work on the go. Since I work in fashion detail, I’m always looking for new materials. I use Evernote on my iPhone to take in-store photos of clothing labels, and up close photos of material textures. This extends into my personal life, too. I often see things in stores that I like, but want to change. A side effect of working in retail fashion is knowing that you can change and customize everything. I’ll often find myself snapping photos of individual items like tops and accessories so I can see how these items might fit into outfits I already have. I can also snap photos of items and add text saying how I would change the item (i.e.: love this chair but prefer if the arms were lower).

For blogging


  • Evernote as a visual reminder. I see so many things in a given day or week, and as I’m clicking through a site or my emails, I methodically clip and forward things to my Evernote account, adding tags (one of my favorite features) so I remember to go back and look at things later. I never know if I’ll end up using something on my blog or entertaining, or maybe for work, so certain notes end up being tagged for multiple purposes.
  • For writing blog posts as a two-step process. Often, blog ideas will come to me throughout the day. No matter where I am, I can quickly type them up in Evernote and finish them later. I’ll write the main gist of an idea, or notes to myself like ‘add a photo of X’ to make the process of finding supporting photos later much easier. The outline eventually becomes my blog post. Approaching my blog writing in this way also helps me revisit posts to re-evaluate how reader-friendly they are.
  • For creating collages. When I’m creating a collage, I look for similarly-sized items with complementary color characteristics. Seeing a lot at once helps me create collages, making Evernote the perfect starting point. I collect all of my images in Evernote, then head to my photo editing program to create the collage. I then save the finished collage back to Evernote, where I can access it later.
  • For accessing photos on my iPad. I use Evernote on my iPad when I travel and I love being able to scroll through all of my photos and graphics on it because my photos can be tagged and include my notes, making them easier to find. It makes writing and working on the go much easier!

Evernote for gifting

I have a bad memory and I would often find myself forgetting little things, so I started making a habit of sticking everything in Evernote. My sister-in-law loves French Bulldogs and I recently saw a French Bulldog calendar online, so I clipped it with the Evernote Web Clipper and tagged it with her name. When her birthday was approaching, I did a search in Evernote and found the calendar. If it wasn’t for Evernote, I would have never remembered the idea of giving it to her as a gift.

Evernote for helping you pursue a new hobby.

My Evernote account evolves with me as I take on new projects. I recently started attending floral school; it’s a new hobby and I’ve been using Evernote to help me capture inspiration and lessons.


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10 Comments RSS

  • Debbie

    This app is great I can’t wait to use it for school!

  • Plymouth Blinds

    To further decorate the house and make it look clean curtains and draperies can be put over the open closets. This helps the house look more neat and tidy

  • Gloria Beary

    Erin – genius! so inspiring! i’m a new user and entirely “visual” so i can’t wait to get started with your ideas – you make it look so organized and fun! Thanks for the time you put into the article!

  • Dimitri

    Excellent tips!

  • REGBuys

    Thanks for giving tips and all are really important for evryone who is going for a new home

  • Johnson

    Thanks for the share… Like your tips.

  • hannawebster

    It is good to know all these valuable tips. Thanks for listing it here. The way you have explained each and every point is really awesome. It is really good to considered useful.

  • Harbor Power House

    Great tips thanks, I’ll have try some of these!

  • philipgibilisco

    Really good tips. Thank you

  • Paul Brady

    I love evernote- It’s a great way to collate ideas, thoughts and inspirations which is always useful when decorating the home