Congrats to Carol Smith, winner of Friday’s COLOR YOUR LIFE kit! Carol, you will receive an email from us shortly. Thank you everyone for your comments, we are sending $100 to Teal Toes!

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: Cheryl Sternman Rule from 5 Second Rule.

Comment on Cheryl’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 Cheryl’s non-profit of choice, Teal Toes – an organization that promotes awareness of ovarian cancer.

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Photo Credit – Paulette Phlipot

Cheryl is the voice behind the popular food blog 5 Second Rule. Her first cookbook, RIPE: A Fresh, Colorful Approach to Fruits and Vegetables, a collaboration with food photographer Paulette Phlipot, launches March 27, 2012 but is available for preorder online NOW!

I’m a writer, clean and simple. That’s what I’ve been for years, and it’s the identity that’s easiest for me to wear. It’s the sweatshirt I toss on in the morning, the soft pajamas I wear at night. No frills, no bows, nothing to catch, snag, or distract. Just a writer. Easy.

But a few years ago, I found myself drawn more and more to color. I painted my kitchen orange, and my bedroom bright yellow. Each morning when I open my eyes, I see the sun before I twist open the shades.

Eventually, I started playing with color in my cooking, too, making a point to think about food not only in terms of flavor, texture, temperature, and ease of prep (I’m an unfussy cook), but in terms of visual punch. I also began collaborating with food photographer Paulette Phlipot on a color-drenched cookbook. The result, Ripe: A Fresh, Colorful Approach to Fruits and Vegetables (Running Press) launches everywhere on March 27. If you click that link, you’ll learn all about the role color plays in the book.

Photo Credit – Paulette Phlipot


Color influences my blog 5 Second Rule, too. 5 Second Rule is an aesthetically subdued place. I avoid cutesy design and ornate fonts and let the text and images speak for themselves. And while my use of color is restrained, it definitely adds dimension. I recently paired diced potatoes with bright green avocado and yellow egg, and this simple, completely straightforward dish has been circulated more widely online than any of my other photos. I’m convinced it’s because of those bursts of yellow and green.

Photo Credit – Cheryl Sternman Rule


Color can draw attention to an ingredient, a dish, or even a cause. Teal Toes, a non-profit that promotes awareness of ovarian cancer, is a perfect example of how color works for good. Teal Toes encourages the use of teal nail polish to spotlight this devastating disease, a disease that took my mother and has affected my life, though I myself have not suffered from it. Click over to learn more.


Thank you, YOLO Colorhouse, for featuring my work, and for donating $1 per comment below to Teal Toes. Long live color, in our homes, in our cooking, and in our lives at large. Let me know how color inspires your daily life in the comments below — each comment counts as a $1 donation Teal Toes (up to $100), and enters you to win a COLOR YOUR LIFE kit!

– Cheryl Sternman Rule

For more inspiring images from Cheryl Sternman Rule, 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