Pinterest: The Hot New Site You Should be On

Pinterest is an unlimited virtual pinboard where users can organize images of things they find and love.

It’s great if you’re decorating a home, planning an event or just looking for inspiration.

This unique website launched in March 2010, and it’s finally gaining traction with a broader audience. In August, Time named Pinterest to their “50 Best Websites of 2011” list.

How to Pin

First, you need an account. Go to pinterest.com and request an invitation. It’ll take a day or two to come through. Or, if you have a friend already on, you can ask him or her to send you an invite.

Next, install a “Pin It” button on your web browser, and with the click of a button you can add a photo of gorgeous kitchen cabinets or DIY party decorations to one of your boards. Create as many boards as you like to organize images of your interests into specific categories. Can’t find all the things you want on the web or aren’t sure where to look? Follow other users who pin things you like or venture through a specific category of ideas from the home page.

If you spot something you love, click on it once to see a larger image of it, and twice to be directed to the original website.

How to Use Pinterest: Decorating

Pinterest makes it easy to organize ideas into a virtual look book—no printing or snipping required. Whether you want to pin an image of the perfect color scheme, a beautifully designed living room or an eye-catching couch, Pinterest lets you pin it all. You can then share your boards with a designer, and allow him or her to pin looks to your board as well.

“It’s a very good tool for someone who possibly has not worked with a designer in the past and might be thinking about working with one, because it can really organize their thoughts and their likes and dislikes,” says Michelle Rohrer-Lauer of Michelle’s Interiors Design Group. “If they find 20 items that they just love, they can put them all together and compare them.” She also suggests Pinterest to create boards for rooms with different energies.

Using Pinterest for All Your Passions

Decorating aside, Pinterest can also make a crafter, baker or even wedding planner out of you. Allison Seibel of Clarendon Hills, started using the site around Thanksgiving to collect ideas for her older sister Katie’s wedding. The wedding isn’t until September, but Allison is already scouring boards and websites to organize ideas for the bridal shower, bachelorette party, flowers, dresses and everything else.

Wheaton native Alexa Perconti has been pinning since last year and has boards for recipes, quotes, clothes and crafts. She’s made several yummy treats and cool crafts since joining. One of her favorite creations is a “sun jar” (a frosted Mason jar with a mini solar lamp inside). “Seeing someone else make something and learn from their process, successes and failures really made me feel like I could actually do it myself,” she says.

Who to follow:

Elsie Larson: This designer and owner of Red Velvet Shop pins everything beautiful.
Nina Garcia (NYC): Nina is the fashion director at Marie Claire and her page is a one-stop shop for all of your fashion needs.

Make It Better Staff Members:

Jessica DeJong, art director – products, style
Laura Hine, editor in chief – food, books, fashion
Kathryn Achenbach, fashion editor – fashion trends and style ideas
Kelly Konrad, events editor – books, foods, crafts
Deana Lewis, sales account executive – quotes, weddings, recipes
Liz Logan, senior editor – crafts, fashion
Kari Owens, graphic designer – destinations, DIY, design ideas
Sarah Philippart Bledsoe, graphic designer – travel, crafts, home
Kristina Tober, home and parenting writer – interior design

Best categories (on the homepage):

  • Home Decor
  • DIY & Crafts
  • Design
  • Weddings & Events
  • Holiday (for all your seasonal entertaining, decorating and dining needs)

 

Sample board ideas:

  • Dream Home/Room
  • DIY Projects
  • Delicious Dishes
  • Pretty Things
  • My Style
  • Dinner Party Ideas