COLOR YOUR LIFE – Guest Blogger Megan Reardon

Congrats to Susan R., winner of Monday’s COLOR YOUR LIFE kit! Susan R., you will receive an email from us shortly. Thank you everyone for your comments, we are sending $100 to MusiCares! Keep checking back, there are more chances to win all week!

Welcome to COLOR YOUR LIFE – Guest Blogger week! We have invited 5 vibrant contributors to the YOLO Colorhouse blog to write about how color inspires the creative work they do and beautifies the world we live in. Today’s guest blogger: Megan Reardon from

Comment on Megan’s blog for your chance to win a COLOR YOUR LIFE Kit – 1 gal of YOLO Colorhouse paint, set of YOLO Colorhouse fan decks, and a 100% organic cotton canvas YOLO tote. Your comment also counts as a $1 donation to Megan’s non-profit of choice, MusiCares – a non-profit that helps music people who don’t have safety nets for emergencies.

- – - – - -

Megan created her blog, Not Martha, in 2001 as a place to keep track of her many crafty projects. From sewing to baking to interior design, Megan documents her color-filled projects daily on her blog, which has garnered mentions from hundreds of heavily trafficked sites including Daily Candy, Apartment Therapy, and Metafilter, and has been nominated for several Bloggie awards.

I create DIY projects for my website and they are often themed for holidays so I use lots of color to reflect the celebration.

Megan Reardon -


Megan Reardon -


When I have supplies spread out across my dining room to take photographs the mess is so festive I almost don’t want to put everything away. I have a lot of fun gathering supplies for a new project and have been known to travel far to see if the shades of a different brand of tissue paper would be even better.

Megan Reardon -


Megan Reardon -


Often when I’m out looking for materials the color options will inspire or finalize a project and I’ll return far more obsessed than I started out.

Color is also essential in my house, I live in Seattle and bright splashes of color help combat the gloomy winter months. I have an orange dining room wall that makes the room feel very awake, a Mediterranean blue front door and some fresh green doors in our back entry. Touches of bright yellow lighten my bedroom and are easy to swap out if I change my mind (which I do, often). With these colors surrounding me it reminds me to keep my life as well as my work playful.

CLAY .02

Let me know how color inspires your daily life in the comments below — each comment counts as a $1 donation to my non-profit of choice (up to $100), MusiCares – an organization that helps music people who don’t have safety nets for emergencies, and enters you to win a COLOR YOUR LIFE kit!

- Megan Reardon

For more inspiring images from Megan Reardon, visit our COLOR YOUR LIFE Pinterest board!

COLOR YOUR LIFE Kit: 1 gal of YOLO Colorhouse paint, set of YOLO Colorhouse fan decks, and a 100% organic cotton canvas YOLO tote

This entry was posted in Art, Color, Garden, Green Living, Home Decor and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

107 Responses to COLOR YOUR LIFE – Guest Blogger Megan Reardon

  1. Jo says:

    Yay color! (I love the tissue paper eggs)

  2. Jackie says:

    I’m the same way about the “festive mess,” sometimes when I am finished with a painting project I feel like even the paper towel covered in paint from cleaning brushes is art!

  3. kat says:

    Fantastic projects. You are a truly a wonder.

  4. Sioux says:

    I cannot stand plain walls! My living room has pumpkin wall and the accent color in the kitchen is aqua. I have to say, tho, we are finishing our basement, and, surprisingly, i decided to go white white white. Yolo imagine 01, of course!

  5. Tessa says:

    My favorite color is also my favorite piece of furniture: a bright green velvet fainting couch I got for the first apartment I had on my own. Every “responsible” grownup I’ve ever met thinks it’s terrible, and my fiancee openly daydreams of the day we’ll have a big over-stuffed sofa instead of a dainty fainting couch, but every time I look at the bright green splash of color filling my living room I can’t help but smile.

  6. Sarah says:

    Color’s just fun – it brightens up a grey day, calms a cranky day, and is pretty. (Well, there’s a few shades that are ugly, but you need the balance.)

  7. Ellen says:

    I’m so drawn to green right now, but I think it’s because I am so excited that spring is near! (That “Thrive .06″ is amazing!) Megan – what an excellent non-profit to choose, as well.

  8. Sydney says:

    While I like my walls to be neutral, I love having pops of color that are easy to swap out, also useful because I tend to move internationally every few years or so..

  9. Trissy says:

    The leprechaun cake is awesome!

  10. kate says:

    We rent and our entire place–floor to ceiling, every room–is painted a color I have named “band-aid.”

    Some day I will be a grown-up and get to choose my own wall colors too….

  11. Kim T says:

    I’m addicted to NOT MARTHA!

  12. Jess F. says:

    I color my life with books. I keep the brightly colored books I’ve recently finished and/or hope to soon pick up piled, scattered and strewn on my desk. It’s a bright happy mess that inspires me to keep reading!

  13. Susan R. says:

    Color memories! My mom, who missed her calling, used blue, olive green, and deep purple to decorate our seven different houses in the 60s and 70s (Navy family). In the 80s, she painted her bedroom chocolate brown with white trim, and hung large vintage sepia photographs of American Indians. In the 90s, she did white and blond wood with deep red accents. When she moved in with me in her 70s, she said I had “broadened her pallete”; yellow and orange were colors she had never liked before, but did now. Different colors, almost like scents, put me strongly in mind of past times, places and people — and especially my mom.

  14. Andrea says:

    Color is life!

  15. Justin says:

    Wonderful post on the use of color to brighten life not only during the holidays but during the dull winter months as well.

  16. A says:

    I’m inspired to organize by color. Lots of color, lots of sorting. Folders, books, fabric, dishes, clothes, records.

  17. susan dennis says:

    I love all your projects but your color ones tickle me the most.

  18. Sarah says:

    I have a yellow dining room (one of the yolo aspires) and a green-blue bathroom (yolo Water 06). I love them both! Now to figure out what color to paint my bedroom and living room…

  19. Jill says:

    It’s the outdoor colors that get me inspired this time of year — taking a walk and seeing that even while it’s grey and drizzly here in Seattle, the trees and bulbs are already bursting into bloom. It just feels so uplifting to see Mother Nature starting to show off! It renews my spirit and puts me in a creative mood. Fun post, thanks!

  20. StarryRose says:

    Since I use Photoshop for a lot of projects I do, I love finding a great piece with good colors and using the color-dipper tool. I used to try to keep clothes/accessories/bags in neutral colors so it would all “match” but I’ve found that kinda boring. Now I have a great little green messenger bag from LL Bean that is one of my favorite things to carry around; it’s hard to lose in a jumble, too! I’ve been working on a mural in my bedroom and found that looking for paint colors and mixing them is pretty awesome, too. Loving the mural over the plain walls. I’m already hatching a plan for the kitchen and the first mural isn’t done!

  21. Dulcie says:

    I feel you are a kindred spirit, with your love of super saturated colours. I remember when you painted your dining room that amazing orange! We’ve only painted three rooms in our house, to date, but they are also super saturated rich colours. The kitchen is a luscious red, the library/nursery is a celery green and our bedroom is deep purple/grey.

  22. Micael Chadwick says:

    If a person could be addicted to color, I would be. I am currently in the process of painting my room with Yolo’s Petal 5 (the vibrant blue) – and can already feel its effects! It’s so inspiring. “Festive Mess” is the perfect description for my world (I may have to borrow it!). One color inspires another idea which, in turn, inspires another. The process is never ending! Sometimes it’s all I can do to keep up! And I wouldn’t have it any other way!!!

  23. Patr says:

    Love Not Martha and her crafts!!!! I plan on doing one of the rainbow cakes for this coming Saturday!

  24. April says:

    I also think a lot about color in terms of crafting. Recently I started quilting and playing with colors, both contrasting and matching, play such a big part of making a nicely balanced quilt. My favorite combinations right now are slate gray with orange and yellow with purple.

  25. Tiffany Wilson says:

    Colour lifts my mood, especially on an overcast day. Putting on my teal velvet jacket, a red slide in my hair and purple boots and suddenly everything feels good. My daughter’s favourite colour is pink – lovely hot warm pink – so I am painting her first own bedroom in Sprout 05, with furniture painted in Petal 04 and possibly Sprout 01, among other bright vivacious colours to match her gregarious personality. I want her to feel inspired and lifted everyday by the colours around her. Colour also inspires my writing – I imagine a purple elephant and green girl with a pointy pink cap and little characters come alive. Anyway, that’s probably enough. Thanks for your post and I will now check out your blog. :)

  26. Stephanie says:

    Great post and great charity!

  27. Nancy says:

    Color – and lots of it – inspires my glass work but enhances my life, too. Basic black is fine for one wardrobe item but then you have to add some color or it’s too boring…and in life it’s the same!

  28. MargieO says:

    Festive messes are great! I have a piece of Bristol Board that I use as a color test for my paintings, it is fast becoming a work of art in it’s own right! Enjoyed the article and will be enjoying Not Martha as well!

  29. Liz J in Central Illinois says:

    A bright splash of color just makes me smile, especially on a cloudy, gloomy day! :) And I am the same way when crafting; I have my “mess” spread out all over, and hate to clean it up because it just looks so pretty and festive!

  30. LaDonna Courville says:

    I love color! Rainbows no neutral in my life! ;)

  31. Nancy M. says:

    Color is great.

  32. Kelly says:

    Color is super important for my daily mood. We’re renting right now, and the house has plain white rental walls, but the carpeting is funky 70′s shag – orange in one room, green in a bedroom, blue in another…aah!

  33. Mamamalama says:

    Color can set the tone for the day, the brighter the better!

  34. ami says:

    Especially love the rainbow cake! Love Yolo too, I used one of their blues for my walls in my last apartment after seeing Dooce use the same color in her office :)

  35. Brianna says:

    Gorgeous — I may have to make a few eggs for Easter.

  36. whitney says:

    I used to be afraid of color in my wardrobe, but have learned to love a little pop of color. It makes me happy. I’m also now itching to paint a wall of my apartment something other than white…one day when I’m not renting.

  37. Michele says:

    I love to surround myself with as much color as possible! Yellow especially is so very very cheerful.

  38. Liz says:

    Love love love the Leprechaun cake!

  39. Miranda says:

    I love the vibrant Spring colors in these pictures! They are reminding me that it is time to put away the brown/orange/green from the Fall and focus on something brighter and more energetic. I’m a big advocate for using color to set (or change) my mood.

  40. Lisa Morgan says:

    I love the “crack me” eggs in “grass”. Amazing use of Color!

  41. nzle says:

    Swap-able and easily changeable color is key for renters! And amen to needing to keep things bright in the grey winter.

  42. Elsa says:

    Two years ago, The Fella and I surprised ourselves by choosing a candy-apple red sofa. Before then, our living room textiles and accents had been all soft sage greens and tans in the camel-to-caramel range.

    That bright red sofa gave me an unexpected chance to get more bold and playful with color. (We’re renters, so painting our walls — and inevitably repainting when we move out — is off the table for now.) I pulled out my husband’s Fenway park collectibles, a stack of vintage baseball-inspired board games, and all my vintage advertising posters, which all help give the room a fun, bright appeal.

  43. Francesca says:

    I love notmartha’s diy!

  44. Michelle says:

    So nice to see an advocate for colour on walls! One of my first jobs was at a paint store and I’ve never understood why people are so afraid of painting their walls anything but beige or white.

    Yay colour!

  45. Kat says:

    My favorite colors are rusts and teals, but Spring is coming and it’s all about bright yellow daffodils, green grass, and purple crocuses. I welcome it as a respite from grey Northwest days.

  46. Amy says:

    Color is the way we start all projects in my house. My children or I will think of a color and THEN a project. Sometimes I’ve redone a room just because I realize I NEED a particular color in the house!

  47. Yvette F. says:

    I love color in my clothing, my house, my jewelry. Make me feel alive. My husband keeps up entertained with his guitar playing almost nightly!

  48. Sprizee says:

    You constantly inspire me with your non-traditional crafty brilliance.

  49. Ren says:

    Working in comic books, color is a huge part of my life. The brighter, the better.

  50. Mary Nichols says:

    Love this color your life idea!!! :>)

  51. Michelle says:

    My walls are rental white, so I count on pops of color to lift my mood and make things feel a little less dreary.

  52. Hayley says:

    I certainly need more color in my life! I love those tissue paper eggs too, I may have to make them soon!

  53. Lisa says:

    Love the polka dot colored eggs…fun with Easter so soon. Great non-profit choice as well!

  54. Nicola says:

    My apartment isn’t particularly colorful, but I love to wear color. I love richly colored clothes, and when I feel really fancy, I make sure to wear a bright lipstick.
    My apartment is really only colorful at Christmas. I love Christmas, and my only theme is glitter; I have rainbow glittery balls and multicolored lights and bright wooden ornaments.
    Thanks for the opportunity to support MusiCares Megan!

  55. christene says:

    megan, for real, i am totally going to make some of these eggs for my kid this year. he will love them and i have been mooning over them for too long. i love your charity, too, have a (musician)friend who just had a stroke at 43 and is in line to get some help from it. good on ya!

  56. Greeblygreebly says:

    I find the colors in nature to be very soothing so in our last house I painted our bedroom walls sky blue. It lightened up the basement room so much and it was like waking up outdoors on a spring day, delightful!

  57. Alison says:

    Great to know my comment is worth $1! Don’t enter me for the other prize. Thanks!

  58. Becky says:

    I usually lurk at Not Martha but for a good cause I’ll happily delurk!

    My three teenage kids and I love Megan’s colorful crafts, especially for the holidays. Thank you so much…

  59. Jen says:

    I also love creating a colorful mess when I’m in the midst of a project. The perfect colors are so inspiring! Loved the pics of your projects!

  60. Amy Jensen says:

    I saw your post for the rainbow cake last year and tucked the idea away (my sons birthday is on March 17th and we seem to always have some bit of leprechaun mischeif at his celebration) I am ashamed to say I had forgotten the idea and am so glad to have the reminder!! (and the chance also to raise $$ for musicians in need!) Keep the inspiration rolling! <3

  61. Paola Thomas says:

    I have synaesthesia and see words as colours. So they’re always there with me throughout the day. I’m totally addicted to colour anyway, and love Not Martha’s posts and photography.

  62. Kathy Bolton says:

    thanks for introducing me to a new site. best of luck

  63. Sarah says:

    Great post and cause!

  64. Sherri S. says:

    Love all of these–I don’t do bright color very well, but I’m inspired!

  65. Wendy Edelson says:

    glorious rainbow cake, brilliant polka dot eggs…such clear happy dancing color…impossible not to smile! Thank You!

  66. Jill says:

    love that there are so many comments! keep them coming. sounds like a great cause.

  67. Chris says:

    The colors make me happy!

  68. Kelly Paquette says:

    Beautiful colors, lovely photos.

  69. Kelly says:

    Oh, and color inspires us in so many ways each and every day, from the eye shadow we swipe on to the plate of food at dinnertime. I love color.

  70. Barbara says:

    Love the beautiful colors. Hope you get lots of comments.

  71. Abby says:

    You definitely have a good eye for color, it is one of the big reasons I keep coming back to your site!

  72. Vicki says:

    Thank you for the wonderful variety of things you post on your site.

  73. petula says:

    Gorgeous colors and projects!

  74. Marisol says:

    Oh wow! such a great post! So Spring! now I am running to do all these projects!

  75. Linda L. says:

    I love your use of colour – especially on days like today when it’s pouring rain!
    I’m living with ‘renter’s white’ on the walls and can’t wait to have a place where I can paint. My last place had a different vibrant colour in every bedroom and a wonderful yellow kitchen plus a light mauve living room that changed shades as the light changed.

  76. Bubbles says:

    Living in Minnesota I hear your pain on the gloomy winter months. I love bright blues. They put me in mind of nice warm oceans, rather than my snowy cold reality.

  77. Jenny says:

    I get to spend a lot of time on colors in my classroom and it’s often the most fun part of my day. Also helps me figure out what to wear sometimes!

  78. LauraVW says:

    I think colour makes a big difference to my mood – some colours don’t relax me at all, while others make me feel comfortable and at home in a space.

  79. Anne At Large says:

    Love the visuals in this post. That’s one of the reasons I love reading your stuff, the way you capture the crafting action! And I might have to give those “Crack me” eggs a shot this Easter.

  80. Nat from Peru says:

    Just thinking about colors for interior design, a painting, textiles, etc is just enough to inspire me! I built an entire spare bedroom off of a mustard yellow sham! :)

  81. Beth says:


  82. ellen says:

    I like a quiet palette in my home, and for budgetary reasons stick for neutrals in my clothing, but for accessories and knitting projects the sky’s the limit. I love pops of bright colors around me.

  83. emily says:

    I love! Looking forward to the lovely colors of Ohio in spring, and bringing green back into my life after a dreary winter.

  84. Alison says:

    I love my bright yellow dresser! A former landlord put it out on the curb and I rescued it from certain doom.

  85. Holly says:

    My favorite piece of painted furniture was an old armoire that I inherited from the previous owner of my first house (too big to move out!). I painted it an apple green color — had to do it twice because the firest color was not quite right — and it brightend my days for several years.

  86. tami says:

    It’s so timely to see the leprechaun’s rainbow cake just before St. Patrick’s day!

  87. Stefanie Powell says:

    Yay color! One of these years I am going to make time to make the rainbow cake. It just makes me happy.

  88. Jane says:

    I love color and your site! A friend and I made your paper mache Easter eggs last year and had so much fun and everyone loved them!! I’m turning him into a crafter!

  89. julie says:

    I love recreating nature’s hues. Using paint, cardstock, fabric, or any other medium, I like to use the colors I see around me. I also love to recreate color schemes I see in film, in photographs and in ads. Holidays are a particularly exciting time for eye-catching magazine covers and spreads. There’s so much inspiration and enjoyment to be derived there!

  90. amanda says:

    i super LOVE the rainbow cake!!

  91. JeanC says:

    Wonderful Easter ideas!

  92. kate says:

    I am a huge fan of color and of not Martha!!

  93. Chrissy says:

    I love gathering supplies for a new project too.

  94. Tina says:

    Living in the PNW color is the foil for the gray days. Without lots of color we would forget the summer.

  95. lynn says:

    Love, Love, Love what you’re doing! and thanks for supporting musicians.

  96. Laura says:

    You are inspiring Megan! I am so making that Bauble Christmas Tree – one day, and your rainbow pot ‘o’ gold cake is book marked too. Beautiful things = beautiful world :D

  97. Sonya Kilian says:

    My husband loves all things orange and I love all things green. Fortunately, these colors are very complimentary and our whole house is painted in different hues of each. Not only is it inspiring from a creative standpoint, but it also is a constant reminder to me of the power and beauty of compromise. When I look around, those colors are a true reflection of the life we have built together.

  98. margo says:

    color is so important. i always had light pastel colors on my walls in my house. in 2001..moved to a new house….05…a new house…..09….an older house….12 a new house. everything since 2001 has been beige or sand or off white….even though i always way in the past used color……………i am so totally used to neutrals but still dont like them like pastel or med color—too tired to change it now.

  99. Theresa says:

    Love the paint colors! I made the leprechaun cake with my daughter today! Thanks for the great ideas.

  100. Charissa - The Gifted Blog says:

    I like your description of using color to combat the dreary months in Seattle. That’s my hometown, and my mom was just saying there was snow mixed in with the rain the other morning. Craziness!

  101. Amy P says:

    I hear you about needing color here in the NW. Since moving to Portland, we’ve had to liven up our accessories to get thru the rain!

  102. mrs.charlemagne says:

    My bright green kitchen and dining room walls never fail to put me in a better mood.

  103. Joey Mendelsohn says:

    Green always inspires me to create a more environmentally responsible lifestyle. However, just read something about Brown now being the new Green of 2012. Without some influence of the color Green, I would have to say that could be a bit boring. With Gratitude and Love, Always.

  104. Kristen says:

    I love that green and aqua! And what a great cause!

  105. Pingback: COLOR YOUR LIFE – Guest Blogger Week Wrap-Up | YOLO Colorhouse

  106. Samantha says:

    Always jealous of your leprechaun cake!

  107. Pingback: not martha | Boutique overall instructions, projects, video, DVD and CD Rom

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>