Design Your Life: The Pleasures and Perils of Everyday Things

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St. Martin's Press, May 12, 2009 - Design - 192 pages
12 Reviews

Design Your Life is a series of irreverent and realistic snapshots about objects and how we interact with them. By leading design thinker Ellen Lupton and her twin sister Julia Lupton, it shows how design is about much more than what’s bought at high-end stores or the modern look at IKEA. Design is critical thinking: a way to look at the world and wonder why things work, and why they don’t.

Illustrated with original paintings of objects both ordinary and odd, Design Your Life casts a sharp eye on everything from roller bags, bras, toilet paper, and stuffed animals to parenting, piles, porches, and potted plants. Using humor and insight Ellen and Julia explore the practical side of everyday design, looking at how it impacts your life in unexpected ways and what you can do about it. Speaking to the popular interest in design as well as people’s desire to make their own way through a mass-produced world, this thoughtful book takes a fresh and humorous approach to make some serious points about the impact of design on our lives.

Find out what's wrong with the bras, pillows, potted plants, and the other hopeless stuff you use, buy, clean, water, or put away everyday. Discover how to secretly control the actions of those around you by choosing and placing objects carefully. Find out how roller bags are threatening civilization, and how the layout of your own house might be making you miserable. Use the tools of self-publishing to take the power of branding into your own hands.

Taking a fresh, funny look at parenthood, housekeeping, entertaining, time management, crafting, and more, Design Your Life shows you how to evaluate the things you use, and how to recognize forms of order that secretly inhabit the messes of daily life, be it a cluttered room or a busy schedule. Use this book to gain control over your environment and tap into the power of design to communicate with friends, family, and the world.

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Review: Design Your Life: The Pleasures and Perils of Everyday Things

User Review  - Diana Glyer - Goodreads

A series of essays on design, beauty, pop culture, productivity, and the art of everyday life. A large format, glossy book, just the thing to dip into again and again for fun observations, clever writing, startling observations that elevate the ordinary. Recommended. Read full review

Review: Design Your Life: The Pleasures and Perils of Everyday Things

User Review  - Tony Tran - Goodreads

Good points and written well with dash of humour to boot. (Plus great paintings) Read full review

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About the author (2009)

ELLEN LUPTON is curator of contemporary design at the Cooper- Hewitt Museum and director of the MFA program at Maryland Institute College of Art. She is the author of Thinking with Type and D.I.Y.: Design It Yourself.
JULIA LUPTON teaches at the University of California, Irvine and is co-chair of the Design Alliance. She is the author of several books on Shakespeare and co-authored D.I.Y. Kids with her sister Ellen.

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