Saturday, July 13, 2013

I'm a Pinterest girl, in a Pinterest world

Pinterest!!!  Now, you either associated those exclamation points with excitement or dread.  Funny how that works.  Most women associated it with excitement and most men, dread.  I think those of us Pinterest users can agree that it is a marvelous way to share and get ideas pertaining to pretty much anything in life. 
Those husbands of Pinterest users can agree...your wife has been infected.  She's got the Pinterest bug.  The big question on my mind lately has been this: Does Pinterest do more harm than good?  Pinterest has, in fact, launched to the top of social media interest.  Marketing teams around the world are looking to studies that say 80% of Pinterest users are women and that 1 out of every 4 women use Pinterest, and they are realizing what an amazing tool Pinterest can be!  At the same time, a simple Google search can come up with many articles about how Pinterest affects your self-esteem, how addictive it is, and how it sets you up for failure.

Before anyone gets their undies in a bundle, let me tell you, I have discovered a crafty, DIY, homemade everything kind of side that I didn't know I had.  Over the years, I've tried to find "my thing".  Some people are runners, some are dancers, photograpers, health nuts, savings savvy,  artists, athletes, academics, etc etc. The list goes on!  Truth is, I never found anything that I could really call a hobby.  I've been into photography since I was little (my first camera was a 110mm that my mom got me at a garage sale) but comparing myself to others has made me feel some pressure to be the kind of "better" that requires time and money I don't have.  I did band in school, I loved it, but renting/buying an instrument...again, time and money I don't have. Anywho, there's my back-story.

Pinterest has allowed me to create things I never thought I could!  Everyone needs an outlet like that.  It is in our very nature to create!  Here's an awesome and inspiring video about that. 

I wanted to know more about what some of my friends thought of Pinterest so of course I took my question to none other than...Facebook.  Natalie said, "Pinterest can be a motivator or an idea creator. Many times when I've tried and failed at doing a craft or something else from Pinterest, I find myself creating my own way of doing things and learning something in the process. Self discovery maybe?"  I totally agree!  Self-discovery!  

There are many pro's of Pinterest.  It promotes creativity, going outside of your comfort zone to try new things or recipes, finally figuring out how to wash pillows or fold fitted sheets, cute and inexpensive date-night ideas, how to talk to your teenager, an obscene amount of work-out ideas, and the list goes on.  Pinterest has a lot to offer.  Sharing web sources and resources with friends and acquaintances, collecting and collaborating ideas or experiences, etc, etc!  My friend Rachel says that she's developed and enriched many of her talents from Pinterest!

So what's the downfall?  It can be overwhelming to say the least.  There's a lot there!  Katie summed it up quite nicely when she replied, "I feel the same about Pinterest as I do about Super Saturdays. I feel uncrafty, untalented, and its just a bunch of show-offs."   Natalie says, "I feel as though Pinterest is a giant site full of unrealistic expectations. I feel as though it could potentially be damaging to our feminine youth because of the appearance of perfection in all things that it portrays."  And I agree.  Here's why...

With the recent celebration of Mikey's first year in the world I decided to try several pins.  The cake mashing photo shoot, cute one year pictures with the number 1 and a single balloon, the sugar cookie tower cake with fruit in between the layers.  I was gonna do it all!  Well, I quickly got overwhelmed with how completely imperfect everything turned out and really, I was kind of depressed.  "Why couldn't I do it right?  I'm messing everything up!  Now his one year birthday has come and gone, it's too late now!"  This caused me to think about getting so caught up in the Pinterest world.  There are many blog moms (like this one) out there that have daily picture perfect posts, and who wouldn't want that!?  Twenty years ago, even just 10 years ago, you only saw that kind of stuff in the magazines.  Now, it seems like everyone knows someone who seems to have a Pinterest perfect life. But what about the rest of us!?

This is my belief: Pinterest, like most things in life, can be used for good, and can be used for evil.  It's easy to get wrapped up in it all.  So here's some tips from some of my friends.  These suggestions have been helping me to purge some of my Pinterest boards and have urged me be a little more careful and conscious of what I'm pinning.

  • "I get on, look up a recipe for play dough (or whatever), pin it, get off an make it. That's the only way to survive pinterest. Get in, and get out."
  • "I try to do two new recipes each week from the site...I don't take anything on it too seriously so I'm not discouraged by it. I look at things and laugh, ain't nobody got time for that."
  • "I decide based on what I need in my house, or what I think I can actually do."
  • "I think everyone should pick one talent or so at a time. You'll go crazy trying to be a master chef, learn crocheting, take up fashion blogging, and do papercrafting as well. And when pinning a recipe, click the link. Read the comments. Has anyone actually MADE the recipe? What advice do they give? Google the recipe or craft too-does it pop up on a pin fail site? If you stay realistic and do your research, it's actually really cool what you can learn." 
    I'd love to hear more about how you survive Pinterest, what you use or don't use it for, and what tips you might have for a recovering addict or newb.
p.s. all images came from Google under the searches "Pinterest" and "Pinterest fails"


  1. Nice blog topic. Although, my husband likes pinterest as much as I do, so no dread in our family. I think of it as a great idea spot. I only repin things others I follow have pinned. Sometimes I look for new stuff, but I use pinterest very casually. I've never felt depressed or discouraged by it. But I'm not a big FB poster either. I see social media as something entertaining, rather than something serious to really participate in or measure myself by (there's People magazine and the neighborhood pool for that ;). I guess I just assume most Pinners are like me: lucky to use 1% of pins pinned. No harm done.

  2. Remember that (VHS) video that you 3 big kids used to watch, I think it was Shari Lewis with her hand puppet Lamb Chop doing a 101 Things for Kids To Do, but anyway it is the same concept, so many fun things to watch being done but rarely did we do them. I love those pictures of failed tries, it is good to approach all your efforts with a sense of humor.

    1. I seriously LOVED that VHS! I remember Pete and Repeat, the pennies in the cup of water, the state that is round on both ends and HI in the middle....(sigh) good times! But yea, I think I maybe did a few of those but definitely not all 101 (or even close). Good comparison Mom! p.s. you're awesome and I LOOOOOVE YOU!