Pinterest and The Pacman Problem

* This is a really long post, so it will be truncated about 1/2 way down!  xo

I am feeling a little bit of apprehension about writing this post.  I feel like I might be walking into a lion’s den wearing a Lady Gaga meat suit.   People are fiercely protective of their pins.  But me and a few of my blogging besties have noticed things changing with the great P and so I asked in the State of the Blog survey how you were feeling about it.   Please remember that these are just my feelings about it,  and you might think I am totally wrong.  That is ok!  Everyone is free to share their thoughts in the comments below!

Pinterest and the Pacman Problem

The responses are out of this world amazing.  You guys have so much great insight into what is going on!

So let me tell you how I am feeling about the whole situation.  Granted this isn’t just a Pinterest problem, but I think that it is totally compounded by Pinterest.  As technology gets faster, and the wait time for gratification is becoming shorter we are becoming greater consumers.  Not consumers like the purchasing type (though that has increased too) a consumer like PacMan.  Everything has a shorter life span, because we want something different and new and exciting.  Always consuming, always on the move.  Almost without thought.

When you are connected with what more than 70 million people think is cool, it loses its sparkle a lot faster.

I think that we have an inherent need to be individuals and the more people jump on an idea, the less individualized we feel.  Perfection makes us less of an individual. 

We have become inspiration addicts.  We love the feeling of having our mind blown and seeing just what is possible.  But like any good drug, finding our fix in outside sources leaves us feeling empty and like we are not good enough.  

I have a love/hate relationship with Pinterest.

I feel like screaming STOP THE MADNESS every time I get on there.

So why do I hate Pinterest?  Not because it isn’t a great tool, but because it becomes so simple to think like a minion.  I get on and all of a sudden, I need an all white kitchen that I home school my kids in, while prepping a month’s worth of gluten free Crockpot dinners for under $18, and doing 50 lunges, 65 sit ups, 74 jumping jacks (you get where this is going) for the perfect bikini ready butt that will go SO perfectly with my sock bun.

To me Pinterest has the power to be exhausting, overwhelming, and a creativity killer.  It is so easy to forget what you like when you are surrounded by gorgeous images of what everyone else likes.  It is the ultimate form of adult peer pressure.

I hate that Pinterest takes all of the credit away from the people that actually create the content.  How many times has this happened to YOU?  You hang an amazing piece of art up and your neighbor walks in and says “Oh did you get that from Pinterest?”

Truth.

It is extremely easy to get caught up in the comparison game and Pinterest facilitates the game by showing you the best of the best.  You don’t see anything but the money shot as you sit with a house with Cheerios mashed into the carpet.  It can be really disheartening.

But. 

I love Pinterest because it has a way of connecting people that would have never connected.   Yes as a blogger I do get traffic from Pinterest, last year 15.2% of the traffic on Vintage Revivals came from Pinterest, which is actually pretty dismal compared to other creative sites that have 65-80% of their coming from the big P.  But I am grateful for every single reader that I have had the chance to connect with because of Pinterest.

I love that Pinterest empowers people to try new things.  I know what it is like to be so scared to try something new, that you just stare at the can of spray paint in your hand and wonder if you are losing it.  Pinterest makes things look easy, so people feel like they can actually accomplish them.

There really are some innovative and amazing ideas out there that Pinterest has brought to our fingertips.  I mean, what would we do without Pancake batter in a ketchup bottle?

I mentioned earlier that I’ve noticed things changing and your responses to the questions make it so much more clear!

So here is what I feel like has changed.

People are repinning things less.  Did you know that 80% of the pins on Pinterest are repins?  Only 20% are original content.  That blows my mind.  Less repins can mean 1 of 2 things.  People are clicking into the image before they pin it to confirm the source URL (which is AMAZING!!) and 2.  They are sick of the pin everything that you look twice at, and hoard all of these ideas that you are never going to execute.  The words I heard over and over in the survey were Selective and Deliberate.  I applaud you. 

People aren’t spending as much time on Pinterest browsing.  They are using it more as a search engine like Google to search for specific things that they want.

I think that people are burnt out on perfection.  I was surprised at how many of you said that you preferred blog reading to Pinterest.  As a blogger all that is ever talked about is Pinterest Optimization.  Optimizing your images,  optimizing your site to capture the click and go traffic,  optimizing your content even if that means losing your voice.  But man what a breath of fresh air that was to hear that you some of you guys would rather hang out on blogs than on Pinterest.   I hope (at least speaking for Vintage Revivals) that it is because you see the real life behind the projects and it doesn’t make you feel like it is unattainably perfect.

Do we as women and mothers really need to add more pressure from some made up reality to ourselves?  Being creative shouldn’t be something that you do to feel like you meet the expectations of some online illusion.  It should be about you and what you love.  Period.

There were answers from all along the spectrum, from complete and utter devotion, to some that had a few choice words I cant actually publish on the blog.  

63% of you are using Pinterest less often than you were last year, and only 8% are using it more.

The overall consensus was that:

  • You guys are pinning things more deliberately.
  • You hate entering giveaways that make you follow 500 bloggers that clog your feed up with crap.
  • You have deleted a lot of your old pins that don’t hold value anymore
  • You are using Pinterest in place of Google
  • Recipes are the most popular thing that you continue to pin
  • You hate how Pinterest is becoming more commercialized with larger companies and that makes it feel inauthentic
  • You hate when bloggers pin the same project multiple times a day to multiple boards.
  • You are using it more for inspiration vs.. specific tutorials
  • You sort of hate the related pins, and view them more as spam than inspiration.

Ok this is the part where I am going to shush.  Some of the responses were so insightful and eloquent and completely hilarious, I just have to share a few of my favorites with you.  And just a reminder for those that didn’t take the survey, the question I posed was:

From my perspective Pinterest is changing.  Do you use it the same way that you did a year ago? What has changed?

I never got into Pinterest– I knew it would create a feeling of home/life/motherhood inadequacy in me (since, ya know, my home’s not spotless & perfectly decorated and I don’t do fifteen highly educational and adorable crafts with my kids each week).

I just don’t trust it as much as I used to.  There are so many claims for the "best this" and "best that" and so many claimed miracle solutions, it’s hard to sort through what is really good and what is not.  So I don’t pin recipes and home solution secrets/tips very often, mostly awesome DIY projects, etc.

Mostly. I try to take extra care to pin correctly and from the original source because I am so tired of being taken to dead end pins or to the wrong site. I still really enjoy pinterest as a place to bookmark things for later and find inspiration, but I am much more wise with time management with it than this time last year.

I love pinterest, but it is overwhelming.  it puts my mind into a tail spin and not always in a good way.  like, I swear I was a happier person before pinterest…when I was blissfully unaware of all of the things I hadn’t made, bought or baked.  and then there is the jealousy over other people’s perfect rooms.  I want to go curl up in my bed and cry just thinking about it. :)

No. I don’t see enough variety. It’s just people copying the copy of the copy.

What changed?  It has become commercial.  I don’t want to see Home Depot’s ideas, I want to see Betty Sue from NY or CA or Idaho, I want to see her ideas

I’m not exactly sure how to phrase this…I’m getting the feeling from a lot of the blogs I read that their whole purpose in posting is to get pinned.  I feel kind of crotchety mentioning it because it’s not like there is anything wrong with pretty pictures of nice projects, I guess I’m starting to feel a bit manipulated by it.  I love blogs because each has their unique voice and when everyone starts writing to get pinned, things start to feel homogenized and generic.

I don’t really use pinterest… even though I am the target demographic (25 yo female into DIY/design). I like the more in depth instructions on how to do things from sources that I trust #pinterestcanbealiar.

No, I used to pin everything I liked that caught my eye.  Now, after deleting most my pins, I only pin the ideas/recipes/images I plan on doing or take specific inspiration from.  Basically at first I was a crazed person screaming "pin all the things" and now I’ve toned it down. 

Totally agree.  Definitely don’t use it as much as I did before.  I use it mostly for recipes and large picture ideas.  There seems to be so much mass produced creativity that it doesn’t seem original or all that creative anymore to me.  Maybe I’m just cynical.  Too many users taking over with nothing inspirational.

I used it as an inspiration site a year ago, now I use it as more of a reminder of what I want to purchase or do.

I don’t like Pinterest nearly as much as I used to. When I started using it a year ago, it was full of awesome inspiring pictures of rooms, living rooms, dining rooms, etc. Now, it’s just full of stupid blogger crafts that have been all Pinterest-i-fied.

I used to spend some time browsing pinterest for ideas, now I use it to revisit ideas that I find online directly from blogs. For instance, when I find a tutorial or reveal of a room that I want to use as inspiration I will now pin it. I also love pinterest for keeping track of recipes that I want to try.  I have noticed a lot of websites crop up that use pinterest to get page views, they display round ups from other websites. Nothing worse than not being able to find the original source on a project that you want to recreate or buy!

It is more widely known and so a bit more diluted, I find I actually pin less although there us more content as a lot of it is repeated or not interesting to me. Also there are more sponsored or ad pins now.

I still use it the same. I don’t love all the new crap, giveaway, sponsored post stuff. I just want to use it as inspiration source and not just another social networking zone

I use it way less.  I’m more choosy now about what things I pin.  I don’t want to be one of those people who have 10000+ pins just because.  I want my pins to mean something to me and be useful.  Not sure yet how I feel about them throwing other people’s (those I don’t follow) pins on my home page.  I think it’s really smart for bloggers to pin their own stuff for people to follow.  Makes it easier than searching a blog for a specific post or tutorial.

I’m not really loving the whole "things you might also like" flavor that Pinterest has now. I appreciate that they’re trying to add value to my feed, but mostly it feels just like noise.

Yes.  Gives me inspiration and hives at the same time. 

I don’t use Pinterest nearly as much as I used to. I find that while it began as an elite source of the very best inspiration & tutorials, it has become too commercialized and I spend more of my time weeding through arts&crafts than actually being inspired.

I generally do use it the same though I do see the changes. The only thing that has changed for me is that I am more critical of what I pin. I try to make sure its something I really will do and not just ‘OMG that is so cute!’

Hmm. I would say I use it to buy things I like more often than just using it as a dream board now.

I’m not sure, I use it the same. I keep a lot more stuff secret so I can use it as inspiration without someone saying "I saw that on your Pinterest!" though.

I put things on my secret board MUCH more often than on any of my public boards now. I don’t always want everyone to see a project I like because then they might want to do it too and I won’t be unique.

I try to limit my use since it takes up so much time (in a good way, but a guilty way), but I suppose I’ve been using it less as tutorials and more as inspiration — I did my son’s first birthday based on a ton of ideas I got from Pinterest but only followed one tutorial to the letter; the rest, I used them as a jumping off point and put my own spin on them.

I use it roughly in the same way, but I may have gotten better at it.  It’s my bookmarks, my recipe file, and my inspiration all in one.  I love it so.

I used to pin everything I liked. Now I am kinda a snob and only pin the real good stuff.. and stuff I know I’ll do, use, make, cook, etc..

Agreed. Pinterest has become a huge traffic source for me and I find myself spending more time editing photos for a ‘Pinterest worthy’ shot. (Which of course is dumb bc Pinterest is a make believe world anyway, but I digress.) I think what’s changed for me is that right or wrong, I approach it more as a tool to share my ideas than collect ideas from other people.

I use it a lot more now. I think I love how I can check out my favorite designers boards. Its almost like being able to ask them for advice because you see what their picks would be.

No, I get tired of Pinterest.  I get more ideas from the bloggers I subscribe to than I do on Pinterest.  When I find something I’m really interested in on Pnterest, I click the link and it is either removed, broken or logged as spam.  That is frustrating to me, so I rely on my bloggers instead.

i probably use it a little less.  it gets overwhelming. too much about blogging, pinterest, instagram, etc can make you feel pretty inadequate over time

There is too much stupid sh*t on Pinterest… I just want to see cute home ideas, food and DIY projectors.  People have bad taste and they post it on Pinterest.  You and I have good taste but I don’t pin enough stuff to show the people with bad taste what is appropriate.

Ohhh Pinterest. I do love that u can lock a select few boards since I’m secretly trying to conceive my first baby an struggling with infertility. The locked pages give me an outlet and a place to put dream nursery decor and even reading material regarding the subject.
In several other ways it lacks the luster I once knew :(

Initially I looked at Pinterest as a source of thousands of things that I absolutely wanted to try.  After a year or two of pinning happily and never DOING, I realized that there is a difference between pinning INSPIRATION and pinning things that I actually want to DO, and I try to categorize my boards accordingly.  I’m not sure if this is just me, but that’s how it has changed in MY world.  Also – after seeing so many "Pinterest Fails," I now look at pins through the (cynical?) filter of "would that REALLY work?"

Hm. I don’t think that my "pinning" has changed much, but only because I was determined–from the beginning–to pin a collection that was curated just for me, and what ideas I wanted to keep, regardless of how it appeared to others, etc. So I’ve stayed pretty true to that.
I guess the one thing that has changed is how I appreciate a good picture of what I’m pinning. Saves me from having to describe it to myself in my caption. Ha.

I want to BE creative rather than pinning other peoples creativity. 

I don’t get on quite as much only because I am addicted to it, but when I do get on, I have a hard time closing the window

It is commercial.  It is lacking the personal quality that it had before.

I feel like I have to weed through a lot of the images.  LOTS of promotion of things that no one should be doing or recreating.

I used to see it as a wonderful resource, and still do on occasion. However, as I’m t-minus 16 days from my due date with my first child, I’ve started to see it in a somewhat negative aspect, too. I feel like it causes women, both young and old, to sometimes put an excessive amount of pressure on themselves to be the perfect bride or mother or hostess or have the perfect house, etc. I know I’ve sometimes felt pressured to make my little girl’s nursery "perfect" and to be one of those photo worthy mama-to-be’s even though in my mind I knew that I was being ridiculous.

I used Pinterest for about 5 minutes before it really took off and now it’s just too overwhelming to me. I don’t think it’s healthy to take in SO much media so quickly. I’ll get off my soap box and say that I can’t really comment on the changes.

Don’t use it. Too much of a good thing.

I almost never use it anymore. I feel like it makes me want far more than I need or have time for.

I pin everything but do so little of what I pin and then feel like a failure.

I use it the same way but I feel like my feed is a little more cluttered.   Part of that is my fault because I now follow more pinners but I also feel like a lot of people are pinning more, but not pinning better.

Pinterest has become very un-Pinterest like over the last year.  It used to be my happy place, and now it’s just somewhere I park things. 

Nope! I basically use it for free advertising! It’s so clogged up with "Best of" round ups.

I still use it for pinning from websites (and blogs) mostly and for random inspiration but I’m no longer tempted to make every pretty thing.  It’s getting too crafty and I love a good craft but it’s too perfect.

yes, for the most part. It has become more of a business platform but that is not what I use the P for — I use it strictly for eye candy and stress reduction. hah!

Here are a few great tips that people gave when it comes to controlling your boards:

I pin fewer things! I have just a few boards of inspiration images, so I can track any trends I seem to be drawn to and then I just pin projects I see myself actually doing. I’m more realistic with Pinterest these days. Also, I "Like" tons of things and then when I’m ready to log off, I go through my "Likes" page and Pin anything worth saving and unlike all the pictures of puppies cuddling with babies and other things I don’t need to reference later.

I feel like I use it in a more focused way, whereas before I was pinning anything and everything vaguely interesting. But for me, it’s more about the visual brainstorming rather than articles.

I use Pinterest a lot!!!!! I break down my boards more to specifics so I can easily find an inspiration, or color board, or decor board

I have gone back and curated my boards to be more in line with my current style.  At first I just pinned a million things but now I have reorganized and deleted a lot of pins so that it is actually inspiring instead of a dumping ground.  I also started using Pinterest as a way to search for things rather than Google.

I am heading to ALT Summit in a few weeks and Ben Silberman (the creator of Pinterest) is one of the keynote speakers.  I am hoping to corner him and ask him a few questions,  do you have anything you would like to ask him? 

So what do you think?  Are you using Pinterest more or less?  Are you using it the same way? Am I totally crazy or do you agree?  If you shared a thought on the blog survey, I would love for you to chime in here and share it with everyone!

Love Your Guts

163 Comments

Comments

  1. Such a great post!
    I’d love to ask Ben Silberman if they do anything on the Pinterest’s side to stop all the spamming and content thieves. That’s the number one thing that drives me nuts.

  2. I think this post is so interesting. Especially what others are saying about how it breeds feelings of inadequacy. I dont find this so much, I love it for recipes (mostly) but also love to use it as an inspiration board of sorts. I do love blogs more but I feel blogs have a way breeding these inadequate feelings, especially when they are particularly “tweety” cough *Naomi Davis* cough. I feel instagram has a way of doing this more so to as it is a time accuarate update of someone elses highlight reel.

    I love pintrest as something to do while you are waiting in line etc. and as a search engine and overall I do feel it breeds creativity even if its a tad harder to be the first person to come up with an original idea.

  3. I completely agree with the fact that Pinterest takes away or hinders your creativity. It also creates doubt in your current decor that you once thought you loved, but now think it isn’t good enough because of what you have just seen pinned on Pinterest. I feel this way a lot after looking at Pinterest. In fact, one of my New Year’s resolutions is to be more content with my home and to not let what others “pin” effect the way I feel about the home my family and I have created. This year I plan to be grateful for what I have and for the things I have created and will create for my home based on the things I love.

  4. I love the person that said they pin to secret boards so others won’t say “oh, I saw that on your pinterest!” if they make something. I thought I was the only one! I have secret inspiration boards for collections I’m working on, but other than that I don’t pin much anymore.

  5. A couple years ago I made a subway sign after being inspired by a segment on the Nate Berkus show (love him!). Many times someone would come over and say “did you copy that from Pinterest?” I had never even been on Pinterest at the time and I felt like my sign was an original but apparently “all over” Pinterest. Although I do like getting inspiration I have always hated being a follower and like to think that I made it up. Sometimes I’ll get an idea and search Pinterest to make sure no one else has done it before I dive in! :-)

  6. Great thoughts, Mandi. I’ve found Pinterest to decrease my blog posts. I often don’t feel like making every single post ‘pinterest worthy’ so I just don’t put it out there. Lazy, right?

  7. I adore Pinterest! I probably use it the same amount as I did before. I use it mainly for inspiration. In the end I usually put my own spin on something so it’s never a carbon copy. I definitely use some boards more than others and should probably do a “pin purge”.

    The mention of the annoying contests where you HAVE to follow certain bloggers is a pet peeve of mine though. I never enter those contests.

  8. I loved this post. I too have been backing away from Pinterest and spending more time using Bloglovin to read blogs I may or may not have discovered on Pinterest. I have also found a few people who must spend their entire free time pinning and they just happen to pin what I am interested in. So instead of re-pinning, I just follow them or go to their boards for inspiration.

    Another point you brought up that irks me is “You hate entering giveaways that make you follow 500 bloggers that clog your feed up with crap.” So true! If I like their blogs, I will follow them.

    Finally, I feel Pinterest has evolved much like Facebook. In the beginning, everyone wanted as many “friends” as they could get. Later, they realized it was a waste of time and didn’t really know the people nor wanted to know their business (and vice versa). Pinterest is great but it can get cluttered and your tastes and interest change.

    Thanks again for such an honest post!

    Joan

  9. my sister got me to join pinterest last year — and truly the only reason why i even joined was so that i could get her recipes otherwise she wouldn’t share them! but recipes are the ones i pin the most. I actually usually pin the recipes i get from my blogs.

    and another thing that’s been great for me — is corralling all the workouts that i like on my board. that tends to be a mix of repins and original pins. but i do think for the most part i try to pin from the blogs i read, every now and then i’ll troll through for some ideas. or HOW to do something!

  10. I was just talking about this! I feel like Pinterest is quickly sucking any sort of individualism and creativity out of it’s target demographic. Nearly everyone I know is decorating their homes the exact same way, making the same fad crock pot meals, and dressing identical.

    In 2014 I’ve made a vow to step back from it all and really design my home based on me and my husband’s styles. AND FOR THE LOVE OF PINTEREST, PLEASE MAKE CHEVRON GO AWAY haha okay, off my soap box.

  11. Mandi, thank you for sharing this! With a new year I have been thinking long and hard about how to keep my blog authentic to who I am and why I do what I do. It is great to hear your readers takes on Pinterest. For us bloggers, yes, it is a big deal. I am trying to dismiss the pressure of having to have pinworthy images every week. For me, when my projects are done then I will share that beauty shot, but I don’t want to be frantic to pump out the perfect image just so I can have more traffic. I love Pinterest and the traffic I generate from it is great, but I think there comes a time to reflect and revisit why you blog and share your designs and DIY’s. I get tired of seeing the same pins repinned over and over again too and I’m a blogger, LOL. Maybe that’s a blogger fail on my part ;/ xo Kristin

  12. No, I totally agree! I have totally not posted something before, even though it was all written up, because I was stuck at work or wherever and didn’t have a good image for it, so I didn’t think people would read it and I couldn’t pin it. Boo! I still think Pinterest is a cool thing to spend 5 minutes a day on, and I am much more likely to use it as a search engine for certain kinds of things like crafts and recipes, and I still discover some neat things on it most days. I did definitely find myself loving white furniture a lot more after Pinterest, whereas before I hated white furniture. Although, before I thought of white furniture as little girl’s room furniture, and now I think it looks great in sunlight and can look really clean. Still, I’m not going to have all-white furniture, but I can almost think I will sometimes. That kind of thing. It’s nice to be exposed to things that you wouldn’t think you would love, because your tastes can totally change if you see something done well, but you have to limit yourself so that you don’t fall down the rabbit hole. One of my earlier posts on my blog was managing pin overwhelm, because that’s how I was feeling about it then. I’ve had to drastically re-organize my pins a couple of times to make them manageable to go back and look at and use, because I had too many pins on my boards. Ultimately, I am a bit of a digital hoarder, so I love knowing my stuff is there and that I can find it if I need/want to. It’s a bookmarking system and I allow myself a couple of minutes to browse, but almost exclusively only through searches or people I follow.

  13. This post was AMAZING, and SO spot on. Now excuse me while I go clean up my boards. :)

  14. O. M. G. It’s like you live in my head. Thank you for showing me it is a) not just me and b) it’s something we can say out loud!

  15. Karen Cobb says:

    I stopped using Pinterest in Dec. 2013 after “related pins” took over my Pinterest. My home page no longer has the boards I’m following due to all the “related pins” clogging my Pinterest. Unless Pinterest makes “related pins” optional I have opted out going on there. It’s interesting that Pinterest on Facebook won’t respond to the huge amount of comments on this issue. Love all you do!

  16. Ditto:)

  17. Tell Ben Silberman that we hate the “related pins” clogging our feed. If we want more pins about something, we will search it. I assume that is WHY they have the search function in the first place.

    I still enjoy Pinterest, but definitely use it differently from the beginning, and I’ve been spending a fair amount of time clearing out the clutter from my early indiscriminate pinning. Also, I use it when I’m helping friends decorate their rooms/homes – I will create a board for them and invite them to join it. It’s a great way to share ideas and get instant feedback.

  18. Angela Moss says:

    Thank you for informing me that I am not as inadequate as I have been feeling lately. Pinterest is bad for my health. Does that stop me? NO!

  19. Omg, I never really dug deep into why I cringe every time I make or do something and people say “oh did u do that project from Pinterest?” AHHH! No I did it because I found the piece of scrap wood in the bottom of the box of my new target stools and I thought to myself this would make a cool piece of art! It happens all the time. I’m inspired 90% of the time by my own creative brain and I hate that people want to give credit to someone else….or a website for that matter!! Great Post!!

  20. I absolutely love pinterest and it has become invaluable to me. While I’m a blogger and use it on a very limited basis for promoting my blog posts, I approach it more from the standpoint that I am carefully curating boards that will slowly become a library of inspiration and ideas. For instance, I have a paint board that is nothing but names of paint colors with images painted in these colors. After a few pins, the board started to become a fantastic resource of specific colors when I need paint color inspiration and ideas. I also have a free printable board that slowly over time, became a beautifully curated board of free printables for people to look through when they are looking for printables. I guess I approach Pinterest in the way that they recommended we approach when Pinterest was first launched; to “curate” boards that ultimately become mini libraries for us and our prospective interests. I am very deliberate and consistent in what I pin and mindful (as corny as it may sound) that each of my boards will ultimately be a great resource for someone, once I begin to fill the board. I look to follow people on Pinterest that are doing the same thing as me and it is one of the greatest creative resources for me.

  21. I probably look at pinterest more, but don’t pin as much. I am much more picky about the things I pin. And I am constantly going through and deleting boards and deleting pins depending on where I’m at in my life. Right now I’m expecting baby number 4, and have a board dedicated to that. As soon as he is born, that board will be deleted. I love to use pinterest to spark my creativity. Sometimes I need some inspiration, and then my creative juices begin to flow and the thing/things I’m working on become mine, not a copy of someone elses creativeness. When it comes to recipes, I have boards dedicated to one’s I’d like to try, and one’s that were actually successful and that I would use again. I always delete stuff my family didn’t like, or that weren’t as tasty as they seemed, and move the one’s we love to my tried and true boards. For me, pinterest is just another place to organize things I love instead of clogging up my computer with stuff. Love your blog BTW…get tons of inspiration from you.

  22. Ugh, pinterest. I joined way back when they put you on a wait list to get in. How dumb is that? I’ve been dreading my son’s 2nd birthday party that’s coming up in a few weeks because there’s so much pressure to have a “pinterest party”. Everything perfectly decorated, food labels on food that DOESN’T NEED LABELING, cake tables with crafty backdrops to insure perfect pictures. It’s all so exhausting. When my SIL was planning my niece’s birthday party in December that she needed to “rebel against the “pinterest party”‘. It’s so easy to get sucked in. Kids don’t care about half of that crap anyway.

    It’s also a big reason why I stopped blogging. There was too much to try to live up to/beat. I also had an annoying experience with a picture from my blog being reused by other people. It was a baby announcement that I made using scrabble tiles and my wedding ring. “Love, Marriage, Baby” with my ring used as the “O” in love and “A” in marriage and baby. Well, thinking that it was my wedding ring (not a very common design), I didn’t bother watermarking it and I have found at least five other girl who have used it for their baby announcement. But they’re plastered pictures of themselves or wording all over it. It pissed me off. Once I even pinned one and complained about people stealing it in the caption. And that picture was pinned over a hundred times! I was perpetuating my own problem! I deleted it later, but it just goes to show that the majority of people (especially those who aren’t creating the content that eventually ends up on pinterest) really don’t care about the source. They just care about how they can benefit from the picture.

    End rant :)

    • LIZ!!! How are you!? I totally get why you felt like that! I learned this year that waxy chocolate advent calendars are just as fun as the crazy amazing ones that take 9 weeks to create. That was a really good lesson for me. And I loved the food that doesnt need labeling comment!

      xo
      m

      • Ha! Yes, I bought a waxy chocolate advent calendar super late this year. I’m saving it for next Christmas and crossing my fingers that it doesn’t go bad before then! Who am I kidding… my kid will eat old chocolate.

      • +5. You win the internet today!

    • oh i forgot about that haha! i totally had to “email ben for an invite” too haha

    • Note to self: food that looks like food does NOT need labeling. So true. I’m so glad that I’m NOT a mother yet and hope some of the Pinterest Pressure subsides in a few years because I see it so clearly with friends and relatives – mothers shaming themselves in to thinking that they’re not good enough because they threw a perfectly fine party for a 3 year old but it didn’t live up to the Pinterest “expectations”.

      And as a fellow blogger, it’s really about your motives for wanting to put your content out there. I feel that what I write and produce specifically on the blog is what I love; I truly don’t care how many times something gets pinned or repined. Honestly, isn’t that like caring how many Facebook friends you have? I just enjoy writing and creating and have really settled on Pinterest as my own personal space to just organize inspirational ideas, recipes, etc for myself. And like everyone else, my number of pins has gone way down in frequency.

      Thanks Mandi for articulating what I’ve been trying to find the right way to express for so long!

  23. Yes, please ask him for this! Wouldn’t it be awesome if you could search among the people you follow only? I know I can search among my pins but I’d love to be able to search among the people that I consider tastemakers. If I search “gallery wall” or “black dress”, I’m going to see a lot of ugly images but if I could search the pins of the people I follow, it would be more curated.
    Thanks!

  24. Fairfax Avenue says:

    Pinterest. First saw it about 14 months ago. Loved the magazine quality of it, loved being able to look at everything or specific things. NEVER created my own board, never plan to. I realized that just like magazines that are mailed to my home, making my own board was something that would stick around longer than I would want it to. If I am looking for a specific item (I wanted to crochet a steering wheel cover, for example) I can search the item, see a few, digest the concept and create my own. If I try a recipe that I like, it gets printed out and put in a binder. Only the visitors to my home need to see what I have here.

    Mandi, I’ve followed your blog over a year as well – maybe this is the first time I’ve commented. What I have taken away from here is encouragement try things, big and small, that might work in my environment – and if it doesn’t work it’s okay to try something else. Thank you.

  25. I haven’t changed the way I use Pinterest too much, although I have used it to pin my images of projects I’ve done on my blog more than I use to in the beginning (I use to think it was bragging) but it turns out pinning my images brought a lot of people to my blog that didn’t know my blog existed so I’m extremely grateful for that. I don’t however saturate my photos on my feed. The other day I read where a blogger was excited because she hit 10,000 followers on Pinterest and one of her tips were that she pins what she thinks people will like and will pin them even if she doesn’t like them, I couldn’t help but think really? We all seem so caught up in how many followers and likes and comments we get like we’re begging people to love us and so many people end up being so un-authentic in the process. Maybe I’m different than other women but I love to look at pretty photos and am inspired by them, it also could be because I’m not super young and have some age behind me so I don’t feel the need to prove to anyone or live up to anyone’s standards. I’m smart enough to know no one’s life is perfect, I’m smart enough to focus on my life and be the best person I can be and lets face it I want to look at pretty photos on pinterest not photos of dirty kids rooms or mounds of laundry in the laundry room (I see that everyday at home.) Pinterest is an escape. As much as I agree we shouldn’t hold ourselves to be perfect we also shouldn’t try and tear down people who are extremely talented and can decorate, cook and craft like no one’s business!! We women need to support each other in every capacity!! (:

  26. Hey! First of all, I am loving everything about this blog since the new year. I feel like you must have had a resolution regarding the content you are posting because it has been super legit and honest lately (not that it ever wasn’t) and I’m loving it. I feel like we are seeing a different side of Mandy and it feels super authentic :)

    Moving on to pinterest. I used to LOVE it, it was my go-to if I was breastfeeding or in a waiting room or at a red light, you know all the various places you pick up you phone for mindless browsing. I completely agree with what a lot of other people said, it makes you feel inadequate like a bad mom or a bad wife or a bad homemaker. In general I’m just totally over the idea that I need to be perfect in every aspect of my life. I would rather just decide that day what I want to be perfect at – like “oh today I am going to be a rad cook and my house will look like crap”. Instead of feeling like I have to do it all AT THE SAME TIME. I think the whole trend of perfection has reached it’s peak and we can all take a collective sigh of relief and join together in the imperfection we all share, instead of competing for who seems to do it all and do it all to tee. Perfection is f’ing boring and not authentic and I’m over trying to achieve it. If I take pictures from my iPhone and post them on my blog, I’m OVER apologizing for it. I’m over feeling bad if my kids spend a morning watching cartoons in their pi’s so I can catch up on blogs I love. We don’t have to spend every single second of the day obsessing over what we should or could be doing better. Life is too short to be that stressed and I would rather be imperfect and HAPPY than constantly striving for perfection and popping xanax along the way because it’s way to hard and way too impossible and no fun at all. Pinterest just perpetuates the whole idea that we aren’t doing enough, other people are doing more and doing it better than you are.

    So that’s MY two cents!

    Mandy, I like you. You do some really ballsy stuff that takes a ton of time but you don’t act like it wasn’t hard and you don’t act like you were cooking an amazing dinner in between hooked on phonics sessions with your kids, while running on a treadmill with your high heels on and with your hair perfectly curled from that one tutorial someone posted on how to achieve the “perfect beach wave”. You get what I mean? You are legit, too legit to quit HEY HEY.

  27. I don’t use Pinterest as much as I used to, but I never pinned tons of stuff to begin with. Every couple months I go through my boards and delete stuff I’m no longer interested in. Even after being on the site regularly for a couple years I still only have about 1,000 pins total. I also agree with some of the comments about some bloggers creating stuff only to get pinned. I mean seriously, is anyone really making rainbow cakes with avocado frosting dipped in white chocolate topped with choppped Snickers in mini mason jars served on a DIY monogramed cake platter? OK, that was an extreme (and gross sounding) example, but you get the idea. Some of it is just so fake!

  28. I am using pinterest less than I did before but I have never used it the way most people do. I have always and only ever seen it as a way to pin things from websites and blogs where I find inspiration. I realized very early on that browsing pinterest was going to be a huge waste of my time so I just never went there. I still use google, I haven’t ever used pinterest as a browser. I hate that people repin things so many times and don’t give credit to the creator or even click on it to see if the link goes where it is supposed to. It also grates my nerves when people look at a pin picture and write a description of what they “think” it is and I’ll be, “No, actually it’s a THIS and it’s from So and So’s blog!” I pin things for myself not other people. Right now I’m in the process of looking for new lighting for my house so I’m pinning a bunch of different styles I like from lighting websites so I can go back through and see what will work in my spaces. That’s about as exciting as it gets for me and pinterest. It’s just an idea board, that’s all. The actual ideas are out there in the blogosphere not on pinterest. Pinterest has perpetuated this attitude that – “I don’t have to follow your blog, or get to know you, or care who you are in any way. I just want your brilliant ideas so I can fob them off as my own and look amazing.”

    • Dude. This is right on. Excellent insight!
      The actual ideas are out there in the blogosphere not on pinterest. Pinterest has perpetuated this attitude that – “I don’t have to follow your blog, or get to know you, or care who you are in any way. I just want your brilliant ideas so I can fob them off as my own and look amazing.”

  29. I was an early adopter of Pinterest, so I’ve seen it change over time. What I like best about it is the visual aspect. For instance, right now I’m weeding through fabrics online to find some for my living room. Saving them to my Textiles board on Pinterest helps me look back and see what I like, or even link right to where I can purchase that fabric. I also look back at my own boards sometimes to see how my tastes have changed, and occasionally delete pins that no longer speak to me.

    My suggestion to Pinterest users is to make your boards as specific as possible if you truly want to use what you are pinning. The wider your category, the harder to sort through when you actually want to go back and look for something.

    And I NEVER trust Pinterest or a previous pinner or a blogger who says a certain food or project is the BEST or EASIEST. Most of the recipes I’ve come across via Pinterest were awful. Maybe I just have a snobby palate, or maybe people rave about things that shouldn’t be raved about!

  30. And I totally agree with Sandy two posts above.

  31. And I totally agree with Sandy two posts above.

  32. I TOTALLY need a bikini butt to go with my sock bun! Best line of your whole post ;).

    I don’t use Pinterest very often anymore because
    a)When I was getting on there every few days, it was sucking away too much of my time – 15 minutes would always turn into over an hour of looking at things that I didn’t even know I wanted/needed and honestly was NEVER going to do anything with anyway.
    b)I got sick of spending time pinning things to do than actually doing things – especially with my kids or to my house. I was hardly EVER going back through my pins and trying the things I had pinned.
    c)There is a lot of crap on there now that I don’t care to see, or have my kids seeing over my shoulder. If I wanted to see pics of scantily clad ladies, I could search bikini butts on google or something, right? You would think that if their target audience is women looking for home/decor/recipe inspiration they would do more to keep that crap out. Or is that their way of trying to appeal to a wider audience and get men on board, too? All it does for me is makes me weary of getting on there.

    I DO use it as a search tool when looking at specific paint colors, trim ideas, etc. But that’s about it. I guess I only head there for a specific reason these days, with a specific intent. I rarely (if ever) just browse anymore – even my own home page.

  33. Michelle (aka mybelle101) says:

    Love, love, love this post! Thanks, Mandi! I was interested in what the responses would be when I answered it on your survey, so I’m glad you did a follow-up. It seems that maybe I’m not as crazy as I thought I was ;)

  34. I have been using Pinterest since the very beginning. I am a very visual person, so I use it to figure out what I do love, what my style is, and what I’m wanting. It’s a library of thoughts, ideas, and inspiration to me. I also use it to find bloggers and websites that I never would have found through Google or other searches. I try to be very deliberate and thoughtful in what I pin, in other words, I’m not pinning to gain followers or make people like me. I think a lot of bloggers are frustrated because they feel their creativity is being copied, but I think in a lot of cases, people have the same “lightbulbs” sometimes… like a over a decade ago (before I even owned a computer or cell phone) and had the idea to make a blanket with an adjustable strap that would help me nurse my son on public withouth him pulling it off. I started selling my little nursing cover, only to find that someone else had the same idea.
    I think the key to life and creativity, is just being true to ourselves. Doing what makes us happy and not worrying about what everybody else thinks or is doing. Being authentic, know what I mean? Being jealous and feeling inadequate started a LONG time before people started pinning. We women have got to figure out how to get over that one somehow. Be you, and be content.

    And, yes, please tell Ben to ditch the related pins. Oh, and I hate when bloggers pin their images 30 times to drive traffic, when people do “follow these 200 bloggers” contests, etc. I do love when someone does a project their own way but also gives credit to who they got the idea from. I enjoy seeing how people put spins on something they love. It’s a cool evolution. Keep sharing your voice, Mands.

    XOXOX

  35. Great post! I agree with your feelings on Pinterest. I also have a love/hate relationship with it. I get traffic from it and I find inspiration there, but it can definitely make me feel inadequate at times! (P.S. I’m sharing your post on my FB page today.)

  36. That cartoon or meme or whatever the term is is exactly why I continue to unfollow blogs like this. Bloggers continually telling us to put down our phones- we are missing our babies first steps, etc. This cartoon is saying anyone who is creative and pins something has neglected their children to do so. Neglected kids???? I’m a stay at home mom who runs my own business who gains a lot of inspiration for my pieces I design from Pinterest. . My kids see me work every single day. Are YOUR kids neglected because you spend all day writing blogs? Or updating Facebook? Or instagramming so you can gain sponsors?? How about focusing on lifting up other people instead of berating them for -GASP- pinning someone else’s pin! The horror! Im so tired of ‘open letters’ telling us what crappy moms we are.

    • Not that you asked me, but I think you’re missing the point. That cartoon was very tongue in cheek. I think what she’s trying to say is exactly what you said, people who use Pinterest aren’t perfect and they shouldn’t be made to feel like they have to be. Nor should they be told they are bad parents for being creative, doing projects, pinning pins OR writing blog posts. Did you read the whole article or just the cartoon? This certainly isn’t ‘an open letter telling readers what crappy moms they are’. In fact, it’s the opposite! It’s the uplifting post it sounds like you were looking for I just have to think you didn’t read it. And frankly I can’t imagine any blogger telling someone else to put their phones down because we’d be doing so while peering over the tops of ours…

  37. I have been using pinterest for over a year. I love the fact that there are sooo many ideas and such out there that i havent thought of myself. However i quit repining because i got into some trouble because i forgot to dou le check the post i repinned. :(
    So now i like everything and i clean out my likes and ill start repinning once i double check everything.
    I dont like the fact that some of the past pins that were up you can no longer find. Either because the pin has been removed or because the original owner (pinner) took it down. Sad. There are some really good ones that i would love to repin but can no longer find them.
    I do however double click on everything to see if its someone from flicker or instagram just posting pics.
    If i do find its a pic i google image search and find which website or blog site its from and then ill post the original. Its only fair in my eyes.
    Love the recipies and ideas.
    Dont like that so many people misuse pinterest.
    Feel bad for the owners / blog owners that dont get the respect / credit they deserve.
    Just have to keep on going through the pins to make sure that i dont repin something without doible checking it first.

  38. I think what you describe is not the fault of pinterest, nor is it limited to pinterest. People can “stifle their creativity” and feel inadequate by looking at blogs like yours, magazines, tv shows, even from their own friends. It is the nature of people to do what you describe. You cannot blame pinterest for it. Peoplr make their own choice to feel inadequate. I’ve only noticed the commercialisation a tiny bit. It depends on who you follow. I have always been very careful about what I pin and what I follow. And I follow what I love, not just what everyone else loves. So I really like pinterest because I choose the kind of experience I want there. Just like I chose to follow your blog because I often find things I love here. Keep up the good work!

  39. You completely nailed it! These are all the reasons I love and hate Pinterest. I have commented a lot recently about feeling inadequate due to both Pinterest and some bloggers. I feel like as a blogger myself, it’s not a bad thing to sometimes admit when I fail, or when something doesn’t go according to plan, as we are all human, and none perfect. Thanks for confirming that it’s ok if we don’t all fit into this Pinterest world we each create. I actually had never thought of the way it might be stunting my creativity or what I really like, so that was an eye-opener and something I am going to be more aware of. Well done!

  40. Great article. I have been crafty my whole life and now everytime I make something I get asked did you see that on pinterest? I agree it changing ans it might be too much. I still have my acct bit hardly use it for crafts anymore mainly recipes etc if I am stuck! Love love love you blog however!

  41. I would disagree that Pinterest inhibits you from going with your own style. I didn’t know I had a style until Pinterest. When I saw something in a house I liked I pinned it. Then after I had been pinning for a while I was able to look back at the board and see themes in the things I pinned and it was like my style was finally revealed to me. Before I went with things for my home because they were cheap or free, or something I’ve just always had. But with Pinterest I can collect rooms and idea without worry about those things and when I do that I can see what I actually like, not just what my current lifestyle dictates. I now am looking at my home more thoughtfully and transitioning the décor (slowly) into the style that is truly my own.

  42. I still really enjoy pinterest. Looking at pretty homes is like looking at a magazine, a relaxing down time activity, that also gives me good ideas.
    I however, pin completely for myself. I would have more secret boards if I could. I pin pictures for fun, future reference, and for ideas, is it bad that I actually don’t care if the pin is accurate, etc? For example I pinned a picture of some traditional clothing from Denmark for my daughters school project. I just needed ideas for and outfit for a doll she was supposed to make. She is in Kindergarten. A stranger who follows my boards left several comments saying things like “Are you sure?” “That looks more like this other country…..”, acting like the accurate pin police. 80% of my pins I don’t care if it is accurate or if the link follows through. I am just looking at pretty pictures.

  43. great post! i have had this love hate struggle for a long time! while I love to use it as google when im planning my weekly meals, i hate it too! I got married before pinterest, started blogging before pinterest, i had 2 babies before pinterest and guess what?! I was still creative and had cute things the whole time! crazy right… i have been creative and my biggest passion has been “arts and crafts” since I was born but it wasnt cool back in the day… Im glad its “trending” now to be crafty but nothing annoys me more when some non-crafty friend finds something on pinterest, copies it then posts to fbook “thanks pinterest” what about thanks creative person who thought of this??

  44. I just wanted to say yes to ALL OF THE THINGS, both good and bad from the survey.

    Also, I felt like in the rare case that your survey participant who wrote about infertility will read the comments or if you can track her down I would let her know I am here in infertility, too. I swear this is NOT a shameless plug because really, who brags about infertility, haha, but my husband and I just opened up about our struggle on our blog and it is kinda turning into its own little web of support. I just wanted her to know there are others out there who would love to be supporting her in prayer!

    Thanks for the reader survey. It’s nice, as a reader of many blogs, when a blogger asks your opinion and reaches out up you, the reader. You’re the best!

  45. I prefer to search for things on Google Images. When I finish tracking the thing to a source of significance, only THEN do I pin it to a board. Yes, I am a blogger but my Pinterest is for ME, not to get my views up or followers up. If people want to piggy back on my boards for inspiration, sweet. If not, I don’t care. What irritates me to know end when it comes to the DIY blogging world overall (it seems prevalent in this niche for some reason) are the behind-the-scenes groups where bloggers are strategically trying to take over the internet. Why can’t it just be organic? Why can’t it be natural? If people like it, they pin it. If they like it, they follow it. If they like it they share it. I’ve learned just how contrived the online world is in my year of blogging. I don’t think this is how Al Gore intended things to be when he invented the internet. :)

    • Hahaha! When Al Gore invented the internet!!

    • You are so funny and right! I just started my blog recently too and I’m glad my goal isn’t to make money or make it a career because self promoting is too much work and takes the fun from it. I absolutely hate trying to enter a contest and having to follow anything or do anything beside leave a comment. I don’t even enter the contest if they ask too much.

  46. I used to think of pinterest like this, and then i realized i was following the wrong people and using the thing as a giant to-do/should-do list. Which is a misuse of pinterest’s potential. now I use pinterest like i would use any pinboard- to pin beautiful, inspiring images. I feel the more exposure i get to these things, the more creative i feel. and there’s a lot of inspiration to be found on there- more than one would find in any magazine. On the other hand, If i feel like searching for a how-to or a recipe, i always use pinterest LAST. Pinterest is rife with awful recipes that are only popular because the pins are cutesy, and a bunch of instructions out there from people who have only done something once and then wrote a tutorial on it like they’re an expert. There are better resources for THAT stuff elsewhere on the internet.
    Always remember that you’re the boss of your pinterest account. It is not the boss of you. If you don’t like what you see on pinterest, then change who you follow and what you search for. revolutionize your pinterest experience. I did, and it has made SUCH an awesome difference.

  47. DeeAnna Child says:

    Agree, the related pins are really, really annoying. I want to see what people I know and people that I decided to trust have pinned, not random who-haws. I love it as a place for gathering inspiration and searching for specific things. Also as a storage place, it’s so much easier to pin something I find than bookmark it like I used to.

  48. Oh and a second thought – I HATE how Pinterest has single-handedly increased prices at thrift stores. I’m convinced GoodWill has someone on their payroll checking out which pins go viral & immediately implementing price increases accordingly across the board. Stop it already. I want to be crafty AND cheap.

  49. I’d love to use Pinterest or other online board to help organize my own project. Something that could be private, or publicly shared through a social media but not internet wide. It would be great to have it set up to cut and paste into…..sort of like a online mood board template. Occasionally there are things I see that don’t have a pin option (even though I don’t use Pinterest, I’ve considered it and opened an account…only to get immediately overwhelmed). I’d like a way to group some ideas so I can visualize them together (ideas I get from multiple blogs etc).

  50. Great insight on your love/hate with Pinterest. Personally, I have never been a fan for the reasons you outlined. Authenticity is lost on that site, and yes, it creates a “have to keep up with the Joneses” mentality. I follow the blogs I do because the writers/designers connected with some part of who I am… Pinterest inherently doesn’t allow this. Maybe what I am trying to say is that it lacks “soul.”

  51. A friendly reminder from Eleanore Roosevelt: “No one can make you feel inadequate without your permission.” I love using Pinterest to collect and organize things I want to hold onto–whether recipes, ideas for my eventual new home, or cool party ideas. But I can’t imagine feeling inadequate because of snapshots of someone’s home that may or not even exist in real life; Pinterest, to me, is too ephemeral to lead to feelings of inadequacy. Also, I’ve found that the recipes are sometimes really bad.

  52. I use Pinterest in two ways, the first being personal where I pin recipes, designs, or items I enjoy, want or that provide me with inspiration. The second being professionally, where I pin inspirations for design & architecture projects I have on the go. I’m fairly careful with who or what I follow or pin, if I go back and a pin has no meaning or inspiration for me after a couple of months, it gets deleted. As an architectural designer I’m pretty aware of what I like, what I don’t like and what suits a particular space or project. In that sense I’m lucky because having a defined sense of style makes pinterest easy, I don’t get caught up in the white kitchens or the generic blah that tends to get pinned over and over and over again. It’s a great tool and that’s how I’m going to keep using it.

  53. Total love/hate relationship. When I started using Pinterest a few years ago, it was like a secret place that creative people were sharing amazing things they had found. Now, everyone and their dog is on there, sharing pictures of puppies and witty phrases. I have my follow list very low, and that keeps me from seeing a bunch of the things I have no interest in.

    I love Pinterest for introducing me to things and people I otherwise may have never seen (some of the bloggers I follow are people I’ve found through Pinterest) but I hate the inadequacy it can make me feel and you’re right…sometimes I’m overly inspired, to the point of feeling brain dead. :)

  54. I totally agree with you! When I took your survey I said I don’t really look at pinterest anymore but I wasn’t sure why I don’t. After reading your reasons I realized every point you made about why you hate it is exactly the reasons I have stopped. I hate that every time we go to a birthday party it looks the same. Same dessert table and decorations. I get so annoyed every time someone sees my house and they say ask if I got the idea from pinterest. If I am looking for inspiration I will occasionally look but I would much rather look at the blogs I love, yours being my fave!

  55. I loved this post! Your insights about blogging are really refreshing. I find that as a blogger, so many people are overwhelming me with the “formula” for blogging… and I just think it’s a bunch of crap. I want to be ME, and use MY voice, and not worry about the way everyone else is doing it. This is why I love your blog, and I why I love that you don’t subscribe to a “regular posting schedule.” I have so much more to say about this, I feel like sending you a big e-mail to share some of my ideas. Also because I want to be your friend :)

  56. I love the distraction of Pinterest, total addict. But I totally agree that if you spend too much time looking at the home decor boards (or the beauty, health & fitness and DIY ones, etc, etc, etc.) you start to feel unsatisfied with your own life and surroundings. I like to look at pretty things just for entertainment’s sake–not feel inadequate because of what I didn’t do for my wedding which was 12 years ago and pre-internet anything.

    It is a WONDERFUL place if you are a geek like me though, and can finally feel connected with people across the globe who majorly nerd out over the same things as you do. Check out the main Geek feed sometime and see what I mean. LOL.

  57. I love Pinterest, maybe because i see it providing inspiration that my life wouldn’t otherwise have as before about a year ago, i didn’t read design blogs or subscribe to shelter magazines and live in a town that is not inspiring. It doesn’t make me feel like less of success in home, family, etc. but more taps a creativity in me that sometimes was lying more or less dormant. HOwever, that’s my opinion and I can see how others view it differently. The main problem i see is the impact Pinterest has on blogging. I love design blogs but do not blog myself. Therefore as a pretty objective third party, I’ve noticed are becoming more and more common:
    1. A “pin it” button that is put in the middle of an image so that i have to constantly be moving my curser just to be able to see the image and it not be greyed out with a big pin it button.
    2. On the flip side, sometimes a blog only allows me to pin one of their images in a blog post with multiple images. Pinterest exists because someone has an image which i want to save for later. Therefore, it seems the blogger should allow me to pin any image i choose. Not to pin the 1st of a series of 7 images when for example, it is the 6th one that inspires me.
    Both of these issues are equally frustrating for me. To me the impact of pinterest blogging is a better question than that fact that Pinterest exists.

  58. This is fabulous. Recently my mom asked me to come over to go through some things that I have stored at mom and dad’s since high school. I looked back through all of my high school artwork and thought to myself, “Why don’t I take the time to create like this anymore?!” Meaning, just get away from the “copy” game, and truly create something that came straight from my crazy mind at the time. Pinterest can be great, but let’s all put the laptops away, and get back to the drawing board sometimes! You know?!

  59. I hate it when I create what I think is an original something and then see it done by someone else on Pinterest. I’m not copying their idea, nor are they copying mine, but it just takes the wind out of my sails. One thing I do is keep a board for recipes I want to try and one for ones that I liked. If it’s a pin that I’ve seen posted a zillion times and it sucked or needed tweaking I’ll comment about that in the description so I’m not leading others astray. One thing I dislike about Pinterest is when it automatically has me follow a new board. For example, my friends that are getting married or are having babies. I’m ready for my kid to fly the nest, I don’t need to see their birthing plan pins on my feed. However, I would like to be notified that my peeps have a new board and be given the option to follow it if I choose. Maybe something like when you get a red flag that someone repinned something of yours or is following you?

  60. Totally! Pinterest is really a love hate situation for me too. On the one hand, I like the traffic to the site it generates, but on the other, if you haven’t put your own name all over your own photos, your stuff can get totally lost in the web that is Pinterest. All in all I think it’s a good thing, I mostly use it as a search engine now & a place to store things I need to get back to later. I’ll make idea boards for a specific room, and search for ideas for that room, even though I’m not doing ALL the ideas. It’s like a visual notepad, or.. visual bookmarks I guess.

    It totally sucks when you click a pin and it goes to a picture though… bleh!

  61. How ironic you can “pinspire” others by pining this post

  62. I personally love pinterest. Not because I can copy someone else’s idea, but it use it as a tool to capture different things I have found across blogland and the web that appeal to me. I like to start idea boards and periodically look at them to see what direction i want a room makeover or a project to go. Do I sometimes try a crafty project sure…sometimes they turn out awesome and sometimes they decorate my trash can. But I have had that same experience with projects I have found on blogs.

    I like to see what other people are trying and doing. Dawn dish soap and vinegar mixed together for a shower cleaner…gross….smells like vomit. Baking soda used to clean stove tops…awesome! It’s trial and error and what works for you.

    I also try to pin directly to the site for two reasons. One for my own sanity…to make sure the link still works and two to give credit where credit is due.

    BTW…Love your Posts! Our decorating styles are different but I love your ingenuity and your fearless attitude!

  63. This is seriously a brilliant post!! I have felt this way about Pinterest for a long time. It was so interesting reading people’s opinions and comments. Thank you so much for sharing!

  64. I still like Pinterest, but I’m getting bored with it as it seems to be the same thing over and over. I don’t have a website or blog so I don’t depend on it for traffic, but I do use it to get ideas for furniture for our upholstery shop showroom – it has been very good to me in that format. Personally, I’m very picky with my pins (the majority of my boards are home decor) as I prefer a specific style. Having been associated with the interior design business my whole life through the upholstery shop, I know many different styles and I know what I like for me therefore not everything appeals to me, but I can look at a pin of a whole room and see a vase that I know will look good in my space. Pinterest has helped me with my thrift store shopping though as I can reference my pins while I’m at the store.

  65. I guess this is how I always used pinterest and I use it about the same way now as I did a year ago. I used it to “save” my design ideas for my home. When I get stuck on a room, I go back to my pinboard for that room and remember what my plan was. I definitely use it (and always have) for recipes. I have two boards: one to try and one that’s tried and true with my own reviews.

    I’m not so insecure that I look online and feel that my house has to be what I see online or that I have to create over-the-top parties for my kids because I saw it on Pinterest. So that’s not really an issue for me. And I gladly give credit to Pinterest for design ideas, etc when people ask. I’ve gotten tons of ideas from Pinterest and am not super creative without it! Haha!! I’ve gotten tons of recipe ideas, cleaning tips, and design ideas that I use all the time.

    Although I agree with the commercialization. I HATE having to “like” fb pages or follow boards for entries to contests. I just don’t do it. I hope it continues to be a place of inspiration for me, and a place where I pin ideas that I see from great blogs like yours!

  66. I find it fascinating that 1) some women feel inadequate because of Pinterest and 2) that people are bothered by the question “Did you get that on Pinterest?” I’ve never felt “belittled” by others’ talents that I see on Pinterest–I feel amazed at what cool people are out there and what cool things they can accomplish! It gives me faith in humanity, not low self esteem. Frankly, if someone’s self esteem suffers because someone else can create fantastic crap, they didn’t have that great of self esteem to begin with. And I truly don’t get why people are offended by the question–we all know that a human being created what we see on Pinterest. The question is merely a short cut to “Did you copy some person who posted their cool project on Pinterest?” Now, if it’s the insinuation that you can’t think up anything creative on your own without Pinterest, um maybe I can understand (although I would think anyone reading that into the question was a tad bit touchy about what others thought of her). If you got the inspiration from something on Pinterest, who cares who the person is behind the inspiration?? Do we tag everything in our house with the names of people who may have inspired us to buy/create it? Nope.

  67. This was so interesting! & a lot of the comments were my thoughts too. I try to keep my blog so authentic & share what I love & my style so it was cool to see the comments that people appreciated that. Great article!! xx Liz Mari e

  68. This is my favorite: “There is too much stupid sh*t on Pinterest… I just want to see cute home ideas, food and DIY projectors. People have bad taste and they post it on Pinterest. You and I have good taste but I don’t pin enough stuff to show the people with bad taste what is appropriate.”
    Pinterest is pretty much my lifeline for my projects in interior design school…I always need about a million pics of interiors/chairs/fabrics/etc. and I save them to my boards for future reference. But I always get distracted by the people who take an amazing mid-century dresser or whatever and paint it into generic shabby-chic hell. There are a few facebook friends of mine who eat this stuff up and it clogs up my feed. If I see one more “how to paint distress your old furniture” tutorial using a perfectly good vintage piece, I may have to quit school and travel around the country to give interventions! Where are the tutorials for selecting the proper types of furniture to paint/distress? That is what we need more of.

  69. I seldom use Pinterest to pin pins from other users. It’s too much trouble to wade through the suggested pins. I just use it as an index for things I find in blogs. When I use one of these pins I always click through to the website to make sure the pin is what it seems to be. I also never look at the email sent by the site with suggested boards or pins since they annoy me and reduce my enjoyment of the site. Basically, I don’t use Pinterest much since they started with suggested pins. I understand the need to monetize the idea, but I don’t see why they can’t have sponsored boards to the side.

  70. I thought I was the only one that felt this way! A year ago, I thought it was the coolest thing ever. Then I started blogging and quickly realized my stuff doesn’t look like the perfect stuff you see on there. My house will never be perfect, and I’m always maneuvering around the mess to get a half way decent shot. And I’ve come to realize that I don’t have to regurgitate all of the things other people post just to have something to blog about once a week. I only blog about things that people would find useful and that are original to me. If that means I only get one blog out every few weeks, so be it. I’m happy with the amount of people who have pinned my things.

  71. A year ago, I was pinning like mad. As in, seriously addicted. Then all of a sudden, I hit a saturation point. I thought, okay, I’ve pinned enough stuff. Time to go back through and start doing/making some of these items! One thing that I still do, though, is use Pinterest to pin ideas from my magazines that I subscribe to. That way, I don’t have to rip out any recipes or instructions and have paper cluttering up my life. In fact, that was my original intent for succumbing to Pinterest in the first place. I wanted to get rid of my giant stacks of magazines!

    I also started following hundreds of bloggers on Pinterest just to get contest entries. I really want to go through and streamline my Pinterest, but who would I cut from the team? The sad part is, I still enter a lot of contests, and the entries add up. *Sigh… This is another reason that I stopped checking Pinterest every day. I could never keep up with my feeds now.

  72. Very insightful post. I guess maybe because I’m older – 54 years young, I have approached Pinterest differently. I use it to remind me of an idea that I am interested in – sort of a roadmap. I never “‘re-pin” but always link through to the original site. I love to read tutorials, even if I never attempt the project. But then again, I was the woman who loved to read cookbooks!!!

    I have been on the site even less since they’ve clogged it with “related” pins. It’s just more junk to go through and I don’t want to waste my time.

    I feel bad for young women today. You are surrounded by people, who you don’t know, but yet their seemingly perfect lives make you feel inadequate. The proverbial “bar” is set so high.

    My blog is my story and I try to be as authentic as I possibly can while protecting my adult children from my honest musings:-) . I have MS and trigeminal neuralgia – if I compare my life to others, I just get depressed.

    I think balance is the key… in every area of our lives.

  73. I wrote a post about how Pinterest affects blogging http://www.balancinghome.com/2013/10/pinterest-ruined-blogs.html .

  74. Charlotte says:

    I follow very few!!! I NEVER enter contests where I have to follow a gazillion someones on Pinterest OR FB for that matter…. I post from blogs usually and have only posted those things that really interest or inspire me…. I have never spent hours and hours (as some people say they do) browsing Pinterest … I love using it for ME ❤️and my hopefuls….

    I ❤️ this post and your blog

  75. 90 percent of what I pin is recipes or ideas for diy’s, which most of them I go back to blog or website if possible. I have a humor board I go to and they still make me smile. I am constantly organizing and deleting pins. I love that we can send a pin to someone, just wish there was a place for a comment. It also saves me a ton on paper and ink as some of these are I things I used to print out. For crafts etc., I use it before google. For the bad part I can spend way too much time on it, when I could actually be making something. The thing I don’t understand is the people who have boards where other people can pin and they will have like 40,000 pins. What is the purpose of this, you can never look at them all. Why would you want to pin on those boards instead of your own. Maybe you can explain it to me, because I don’t understand. Enjoyed reading your comments.

    • Hey Lorrie!
      That is such a great question! Those type of boards are often blogger group boards. More often than not you have a larger audience when you pin to a group board vs your own boards. I think that the purpose of those types of boards are not to curate the perfect collection, but a way to get more exposure for your own projects.

      xo
      m

      • I should add that I dont think that group boards are bad at all, there are a lot of really amazing ones. Those are the reasons that you would pin to a board like that!

  76. Oh and sometimes I see something I like on pinterest and then get sick of seeing it so much that I delete it.

  77. I started blogging because of Pinterest. I started creating and painting, repurposing, upcycling, gardening a little and found new interests because of Pinterest. BUT, once all of that happened, I found less and less time For Pinterest! I won a Silhouette Portrait because of connecting with other Bloggers, and found it is much more satisfying to MAKE something than to dream about making it. I have also moved twice since I started blogging a year ago, after finding beuatifully painted pieces on Pinterest and thought to myself “I can do that!” *wink* I know it is crazy, but in my list of priorities, CraigsList is higher than Pinterest, but it is because I am alwasy looking for a new piece to work on. I have plenty of ideas of ways to decorate so need P less and less :)

  78. I do love Pinterest as a reference for new dinners and inspiration. However, it does leave a feeling of inadequacy. I will never be as fit, organized, creative as 99% of the people who post those things! I already feel that way enough. It’s helped me find my own style by seeing so many different pictures, but I don’t want to see the same things in all of my neighbors homes. It does rob people of their own individuality and take all the credit from those who actually came up with the ideas.

  79. I recently shared my thoughts, as a blogger, on “Pinterest Perfect”. http://www.lovefromtheoven.com/2013/10/21/a-bloggers-thoughts-on-life-in-the-pinterest-perfect-era/

  80. I feel exactly the same way you do–I go there for inspiration, ideas and to learn how. I hate paving to follow a zillion pages to enter contests (who has time) and usually find myself “liking” FB because I dont have to leave the site. I love having Pinterest as a place to “look around” but I am tired of seeing some of the same pins over and over! Guess you have to take the good with the annoying–but I do love having it as a resource and for inspiration!

  81. My Pinterest usage is down too. I just find it tedious. How many amazing wedding dresses, recipes, crafts, cakes, etc, can I be amazed by? They all seem boring and the same to me. I guess my interest is just not in Pinterest anymore. It’s like a circus act where they pull trick after trick, except the tricks never stop and by the end you don’t remember any of it. It becomes one big blur. As Lorrie said, a humor board is great. I actually revisit it when I need a good laugh.

    • Also, the whole “like 500 businesses to enter a prize” thing is annoying. I really hate that. I stopped entering those because I usually don’t find the new business to be of any interest to me. JMO.

  82. I use Pinterest for recipes (I’m trying to go processed-free due to food allergies) and have way more than I will ever use. I’m finally getting them organized. I also use it as a sort of inspiration board for colors, patterns, things that I love. I hate how every home in Utah seems to have the same crafty items displayed that you bought from boutiques before but now can make on your own. Be an individual and like what you like. I read a few blogs (4 main ones) and I really like the personalities that show through on blogs. You are really fun.

  83. Pinterest works for me. It’s an efficient way to curate my dreams. I like that it puts explosive trends on the fast track to oblivion. If not, I might have a house decked out in chevron and “Keep Calm” signs, unaware of the oversaturation. This awareness has helped me hone an independent aesthetic, which can’t be captured in one pin, but is represented my boards as a whole. It’s even brought me closer to my husband, who follows my feed and says he better understands my aspirations after seeing them visually. I even read my quote board aloud to my kids at night when they can’t fall asleep.

    That said, there is so much noise and frivolity on the Internet. I wish people would stop pursuing social media as a “get rich quick” scheme and start using and posting selectively. And if you’re vulnerable to inadequate feelings, limit your exposure. More importantly, get to the root of your insecurities. Is your value dependent on how you are perceived by others? If your self-worth tied up in outward appearances?

  84. One of the most helpful tools Pinterest has added is where you can search for things YOU have pinned. So when I remember a something I just search a key word like “pillow” and then I can find whatever DIY thing I was looking for, instead of scrolling through 10 boards before finding what I want.

  85. michele n says:

    I don’t use it much differently but I’ve always used it more as categorized visual bookmarks anyways. I do occasionally use it as a search engine but that is usually to find a project/recipe that I know I saw on a blog and thought I had pinned it but now can’t find it. I’ve never been one to just browse boards. I follow boards for contests but because I don’t get notifications from them then it doesn’t clog up my feed. I would rather follow pinterest boards for a contest than follow 30 people on Facebook, because the pinterest follows aren’t forced at me.
    I would ask him why choosing a board to pin something to keeps changing. For a while I was able to type the first letter of my board and it would come up but now I’m back at having to scroll alphabetically through my boards and I hate that. And get rid of the related pins and was also pinned to someone elses board, I really don’t care who else has pinned it. My boards are very specific & I have redone them a couple of times to fit my use better.

  86. I use Pinterest as on online binder for myself, and will occasionally pin one of my own pics. I HATE when a pin doesn’t link to the original source, so if I really want the pin I google image search the image by uploading it, and 9/10 have found the original source. I follow only a few people and pin directly from blogs most of the time. I am proud to say because I am super picky with my pins for DIYs I haven’t had a fail yet (knock on wood). I also like to use it to corral all the items I hope to buy (or wish I could). I hate when I see a pin make the rounds… ok sip your fancy Pinterest juice from your paper straw in the mason jar at your party with all of the bunting….

  87. I pin crafts or DIY projects and then forget I pinned them. I do try the recipes. I hate when I have to look at the same things over and over because they have been re-pinned over and over. I also hate when there is supposedly a project and either the page can’t be displayed when you follow the link or there is just an image with no instructions. Part of my new year’s resolution is to go through my pins, board by board, and either try or delete each item.

  88. I just love pinterest but after reading all of the comments on the post I think I use it differently to a lot of people. Before pinterest I used to save all the recipes and DIY ideas I wanted to do on my hard drive so Pinterest was a God send! I use pinterest very selectively, pinning only things I plan on doing or to create mood boards for ideas I love. As a very visual and creative person I find that using pinterest creatively is the key to getting the most out of it. I see my themed pinboards as individual creations made by me, each pic searched for and loved, browsing through my own pin boards gives me so much joy!
    I don’t browse other peoples pins and follow very few other users as pinterest is less social networking for me and more a personal scrapbook. The exception to this would be back when I was breastfeeding! Feed with one hand, pin with the other!

  89. Debbie Smith says:

    Spot On! My biggest pet peeve is people whom I follow pinning every picture of enamel ware, or every flower arrangement or every burlap wreath they could possibly find! Drives me crazy! I have yet figured out how to delete them.

  90. I totally get where people are coming from, BUT, it makes me SO sad when women say they feel pressure or that they don’t measure up because of things they see online. It is what it is, and to me, it’s a place where I can check out and look at pretty pictures, get inspired, and kill time I probably don’t have. That’s it. I like it, and I don’t see it as some pressure or a place to compare myself to others.

  91. Mandi, I attended a party at Pinterest headquarters at the end of Alt Summit San Francisco last summer. While chatting with some of the lovely employees that helped with the party, I learned that Pinterest- as a company- had yet to have any income let alone profit. I wouldn’t be surprised if you continue to see more and more changes. In the end, Pinterest is a company not a service and it will eventually need to make money. I still enjoy using Pinterest. It remains inspiring to me, but I am also a realist. If a pin jumps out at me or speaks to me in some way AND I know I would NEVER have the time, energy or interest in actually completing it, I simply “like” it. No need for guilt. Maybe you just need to look at the content on Pinterest in a different way.

  92. Awesome post and I shared on my FB wall! I feel that Pinterest has become way too commercialized and the DIY after DIY after DIY of the same project with different bloggers taking the idea just drives me nuts! From the get~go I only used it to pin my own work, and as a result I’m not huge there and that’s fine and dandy with me. Not enough hours in the day to stay on Pinterest, have a blog and a successful business…..not to mention lead a life outside of the web. I use it just as I do Google…to search.

  93. I started using Pinterest back when it was in beta and no one had heard of it. For me, it has always been about finding inspiration and collecting beautiful images. I am a very creative/visual person and don’t regularly have access to people in my daily life that inspire me. In fact, the other day as I was strolling through my feed, my husband noticed the “People You May Know” section and asked why I hadn’t followed any of my friends. The truth is, they don’t inspire me. I have gone back and deleted pins I no longer find inspiring and always follow the link or search for the original post before pinning. My boards are personal and meticulously curated. I don’t feel my life falls short in anyway because of the pretty things I chosoe to pin and I just wish others felt the same way or used the platform differently.

  94. Kiah Kiah Bo Biah says:

    I love Pinterest. I’ve been on it for over two years. For me it hasn’t made me jealous or inadiquite. I get so much joy finding ideas and inspiration. It doesn’t make me feel like I’m loosing who I am in fact it’s done the opposite. I have found more of who I am because of Pinterest. It’s like a giant endless magazine that I can keep an online scrapbook of and I love it.
    I used it to help get our house ready to sell. I found because of Pinterest you can buy grout paint. I wouldn’t have found that otherwise. So we re-painted all the grout in our house. I used it to find the paint color for the accent wall I our living room. I used to help me decide to paint our front and back doors black. I used it to help decide what landscaping to do. Our house went under contract in two days after being put on the market. Pinterest is an amazing tool. Since we have moved I used it to decide what colors to paint my sons bedroom. We painted it big navy and dark green rugby stripes on one wall. I wouldn’t have had the courage to that without Pinterest.
    That being said the ultimate Pinterest woman DOES NOT EXIST. It is IMPOSSIBLE to have perfectly planned diners and freezer meals, well behaved homeschooled children, super fun crafts everyday, the perfect work out schedule, stylish outfits, hair and makeup, superbly organized and decorated home. I do not put that false standard over my head. Instead I take baby steps when I can. Pinterest for me is a inspiration tool, scrapbook, and search engine.

  95. Note to self: food that looks like food does NOT need labeling. So true. I’m so glad that I’m NOT a mother yet and hope some of the Pinterest Pressure subsides in a few years because I see it so clearly with friends and relatives – mothers shaming themselves in to thinking that they’re not good enough because they threw a perfectly fine party for a 3 year old but it didn’t live up to the Pinterest “expectations”.

    And as a fellow blogger, it’s really about your motives for wanting to put your content out there. I feel that what I write and produce specifically on the blog is what I love; I truly don’t care how many times something gets pinned or repined. Honestly, isn’t that like caring how many Facebook friends you have? I just enjoy writing and creating and have really settled on Pinterest as my own personal space to just organize inspirational ideas, recipes, etc for myself. And like everyone else, my number of pins has gone way down in frequency.

    Thanks Mandi for articulating what I’ve been trying to find the right way to express for so long!

  96. Great post! I didn’t see the survey but have enjoyed reading the responses. My interest in Pinterest has diminished considerably. Too much commercialism, dead end pins, and the same thing pinned over & over & over. I think it sets up a lot of folks for failure in that they expect their project, cake, body, decor, whatever must be perfect because of a photo that someone probably took 3 hours to complete.

    I hate the giveaways where you have to pin 50 different blogs, go to FB & Twitter and the local post office to do the same. I would much rather see someone give away a tea towel without having to jump through hoops.

    I love seeing projects that a blogger has truly created! Whether I attempt it or not, I applaud their efforts and have such admiration for their abilities. There’s so much talent out there and everyone should be themselves which is “real”.

    xo
    Pat

  97. I use Pinterest now like I once used magazines…I was a decorating magazine and book-aholic, I had 100’s of them everywhere in my home, I had boxes and boxes of torn out pages of perfect rooms and recipes that I was going to do or use someday…But I have thrown nearly all of them into the dumpster thanks to Pinterest and now when I get a new one several times I toss them no longer have the feeling I need to save it because it contained two whole ideas I may have loved…And others talking about ads, not as many ads as a magazine has…Everything I love I can paste to my Pinterest boards and re-visit them every time I feel a need for inspiration or I can search for that recipe I want rather then scour through an old cookbook…love it, cause it has truly helped my de-clutter my home!!

  98. Linda Weeks says:

    oh golly, I’m just getting used to chevron patterns, and find now they are on the way out. Darn. I was gonna paint some somewhere. I came to Pinterest a bit late, remember when they said to register for an invitation to Pinterest? It took me forever to get the invitation. So I’m still enjoying the funny animal photos, the crafty stuff, the far out stuff… I’m never going to make an exotic recipè or travel to Panama. It’s just not going to happen. I do feel a little discouraged with the commercial placements that are not from individuals… they are so obvious. But I still have some pinnin to do yet.

  99. This was really, really interesting. I have a love/hate relationship with Pinterest. But mostly love :)

  100. Well said! I started pinning what 2 years ago! I loved the idea of placing things I like into catagories for inspiration just like a bulletin board. Bravo. But then dead links, links to blogs that the idea didn’t originate from. I had started my blog after my job terminated, that’s when I had time. I have to admit I hate all the 20 best cookie recipes routine, and win this prize but click to follow 20 blogs, instagrams, and twitters…..I want to follow blogs that appeal to me. I want followers that like my humor, less than perfect photography and house. And trust me a lot of the stuff I see has been done before. Yup everything old is new again as they say! Lol

  101. Holy moly you hit the Pinterest problem right on the head! Nothing feels new and fresh to me because I’ve already seen a million versions of it. It makes me feel like anything I like is old news and overdone so I don’t even want to do it in my home. I am at a much healthier Pinterest place than I was at this time last year when I was mrs. Pac manning through hundreds of pins a week (or day) and spent all my time pinning instead of doing. I HATE it when my neighbor comes to my house and points to everything and asks “did you get that from Pinterest?” Makes me want to hit her over the head with my thrifted-spray-painted-chevron-upholstered-chair that I did BEFORE PINTEREST EXISTED. I hate that Pinterest gets credit instead of the creative individual. I use Pinterest much less now and definitely use it in place of Google for specific ideas I am envisioning. I also mostly use it now to curate ideas for actual rooms in my home that I am decorating, rather than just pinning anything that is pretty. But there seem to be WAY less pretty pictures on Pinterest these days and lots more dorky crafts. The other day I was at target and next to a cute pillow there was a tag that said “frequently pinned”. Yikes, I speed walked away from that sucker. But I’m really not a Pinterest hater, I really like it and it is a very useful tool, just today I found a folder on my computer of inspiration pictures I had saved before Pinterest came to my rescue, and thought how much better my internet life was with Pinterest in it :)

  102. I started using Pinterest as a way to organize all the websites I’d bookmarked, and I’ve really never used it for anything else. I look at my blogs (I feel like I’m starting to use that phrase — “my blogs” — the same way our mothers used to describe soap operas as “my stories”) and if something catches my eye, I pin it to one of my boards. I can probably count on one hand how many times I’ve gone straight to Pinterest and done a search there. And I still prefer a search on Google: way, way more interesting and legitimate hits. And get this: I realized the other day that in spite of Pinterest/Allrecipes/the-internet-in-general, I still cook out of old fashioned cookbooks the majority of the time — because I know they will work. For me, that’s what it’s all about: trust. Who wants to put in the time baking/making/sewing/singing/brewing something if there’s not a real person doing a real test of that product and saying, “This really works”?

  103. Mandy this is a great post! I agree with you completely. I haven’t been blogging long but now as a blogger I see pinterest in a totally different way. I love its the number 1 referral source for our blog but hate the pressure and creativity killer its becoming!

    We love your blog and love reading your post…they are sure to bring inspiration and a smile! :)

  104. Oh sister…PREACH!

    I’m so glad you posted this! You have injected some humor to a very serious epidemic (which I love). I have been having a love/hate relationship with Pinterest, blogging, Facebook, etc right now. As a blogger I find the more I surf all that, the more I get the blogging blues feeling like life is just never good enough in comparison. It’s a very dangerous game to play.

    In addition, I just hate that feeling when you come up with an out of this world idea just to find that 50 other people also came up with the same idea and beat me to the punch. Gah! Can’t tell you how many projects I’ve nixed because I didn’t want to look like a copy cat when in reality I KNOW it would have been an authentic creation for me. I’ve really limited my surfing time so not to be influenced, buzz killed or creatively crushed. How do women NOT play the comparison game? Is it possible? I just don’t think we can pep talk ourselves enough out of comparing ourselves. I’ve found I just have to do an about face and turn it off. Shhh…don’t tell anyone I said that. Wouldn’t want to encourage that being a blogger myself. :) Love ya girl!

    Great post gal!

  105. I’ve been using Pinterest since nearly the beginning, when you had to wait for an invitation. I. LOVE. IT.
    I would pay a subscription for the service. I am a visual person, and used to be a magazine junkie, I’d spend hours going through years of old Country Living magazines. No more. I don’t even buy magazine any longer. In regards to all of the overwhelming things on Pinterest, the spammy content from Corporations, why do people follow that? My Pinterest feed is free of things I don’t want to see. And if someone I follow suddenly starts pinning things that are not my taste, I unsubscribe from that board. Just like on FB you can tailor what you want to see each day. Sometimes I do search pinterest, but other than that it’s already a carefully curated feed of images that I see, based on the few boards I follow. And one last thought. No one, not a post on FB or a pin on Pinterest or a blog post, has the power to make a person feel bad about themselves without that person’s permission. Thanks for starting the dialog.

  106. This is a fantastic article. I’m pretty new to Pinterest, in that I just started spending time there in the last few months. I mainly use it for inspiration when I’m trying to figure out what to do with a room, outfit ideas and the occasional recipe. My biggest takeaway from Pinterest is renewed enthusiasm for things I already have. For example – I inherited this blood red Pakistani rug, how do I make it work with my existing furniture? Search: red rugs. I don’t really fall into the DIY depression because I am definitely not a DIYer. I’m lucky to get a wooden chair re-painted and I’m realistic about myself that way. But I am very careful about what I pin and use a system of liking things when I first see them, then go through my likes and do a pin audit, if that makes sense.

  107. I moderate social media for restaurants so the shine has left the apple for many a social media platform. That being said, I LOVE social media. I think that every platform has a very specific and different purpose, regardless to how the users have warped them. Pinterest is a curator site. It is a nifty place to visually hoard. I think it’s turned in to a false monster of inadequacy and shaming, simply because we let it.
    Just as Instagram can make a very small square seem so beautiful and special yet at the same time make us feel like our own lives are a mess and trivial. It’s simply because we let it be these things. We browse Instagram and blogs for what is in them, we should “Pin” things so we don’t forget.
    I think it’s starting to turn back to it’s original intent of curating beautiful thoughts. Weather they inspire, negate, deflate or are just simply pretty pictures to look at, that is user driven.
    The main thing to never ever forget is “content still is and always will be king!”. Who cares what those users do to it in each platform! If it’s source is solid it will always be purposeful. Letting the source drive the media is what it’s all about. Moderating a community off of that source is optimal, but you can’t force community, just where it comes from.
    Great article.
    I’d love to hear where Silberman sees P going, or better yet, where he wants it to go.

  108. I got into Pinterest late in the game and never have just browsed for no reason. I have always used it as a googe-sque search to look for specific ideas and projects. Then I pin them under my board for that use. I do go in and clean out my boards once in awhile because I just don’t like clutter, even digital clutter. So to me it isn’t that different just because I never used it how it was intended. That being said I totally hear what you are saying but I think it applies to blogs as well. So many blogs have similar styles and trends it makes you feel like your house isn’t as nice. Every kitchen is white and many blogs run by interior designers are saying only white cabinets and white subway tile and white quartz is beautiful and “timeless” (by the way I don’t believe any design is timeless). So lately I have not been liking my kitchen even though I just got my granite countertops 3 years ago and I actually really like my medium warm maple cabinets. I think the dissatisfaction comes from other people saying it isn’t pretty. It is hard to find your own style and likes when everyone else’s are so beautifully posed and photographed. I love home and diy blogs but sometimes they make you feel inadequate. I say this and I have a blog.

  109. Pinning this post!

    (j/k)

  110. BrettAney says:

    I thought I was the only one that was over Pinterest. The only time I have been on it in months was last week to get a little inspiration for my little guy’s first birthday. I definitely use it like google though. No browsing anymore.
    I have learned a lot from using Pinterest in the past. I have some family favourite recipes found from pins, and found some great photography sites that I most likely wouldn’t have found otherwise. But I really dislike how everyone has the same pins, so nothing is unique. I know that no matter what I make, chances are somewhere, someone else has already made something similar, but now with Pinterest, all my neighbours and friends have made it too. For some things that’s fine. For some things that stinks.

  111. After reading this post, I just went onto my Pinterest and deleted following a bunch of people and bloggers I am no longer interested in or that seem to just clog my feed as well as deleted a bunch of pins I had either tried and hated or pins I don’t really see suit me. It sounds like all negative stuff, but it was actually highly inspirational. I still use pinterest a bunch for recipes because I am a good enough cook that I can see a recipe and adjust it for my tastes and have had quite a few successful meals because of it, but I do believe I need more of a sense of organization with it all.

  112. Pinterest… oddly enough I’ve had an account since the very beginning yet have always pretty much had the same approach. You see for the past 25 years or so I’ve kept notebooks of magazine photos/articles which inspired me. I took the same approach going into Pinterest…however for a bit I did pin all the silly contests. Now, not at all… in fact I have be methodically reviewing my pins, deleting the contest ads, and removing those that just don’t “speak” to me. I’ve never used it heavily so I can’t say that the time I’ve on there has changed. Overall, Pinterest has changed though… its become highly commercialized. To the point of annoying!

  113. I’ve been on Pinterest for over a year and still love it. I went through a period when I felt overwhelmed by it all, so I stayed away for a while. I recently came back to Pinterest and my boards and love it just as much. I don’t believe you don’t give people enough credit. If folks are feeling pressured to decorate like, cook like, have a certain wedding, home school, etc., etc. from things they see on Pinterest, that’s their fault! It’s not the Pinnner putting on the pressure, its ourselves! Pinning is no different that saving images from magazines for inspiration. Remember when people did that? As far as the commercialization, then don’t follow those commercial pinnters! Follow only those pinners that YOU find inspiration from, and STAY OFF THE “Everything” board. I rarely ever go to the “everything” board. I love My pinterest board, because I created for ME. If people want to follow one of my boards or all of them I welcome that, because that means we like the same things. I find my boards are visually beautiful and who doesn’t want to look at beautiful things!

  114. Shock, horror o don’t pin or have a pinterest account. I actually hate that s….. I just follow blogs (food & diy) whose style/voice i love,

  115. i cannot agree and love this post enough! While i do love pinterest to gather and organize inspirations, recipes, designs, etc., it can be overwhelming if you start to compare your home, clothes and life to these images that are false. Not everyone or everything is perfect and in the pinterest world it just seems that way. We just have to remind ourselves to be grateful for what we have and that if we want to create more diy projects then just set some time aside to do so. one of my favorite quotes that I think over and over in my head is “comparison is the thief of joy”. with that said pinning is fun to do but remind yourself that it shouldn’t control your life…only you can :)

  116. I guess I jumped on the Pinterest bandwagon after it became super popular; my first few excursions into it were totally overwhelming, and I just left it alone for a while after that. Now, though, I essentially just use it as an organizer for my inspiration and, in all honesty, a way to promote my blog. The only reason I came back to Pinterest after those first few attempts were because I found out about group boards and how they can help drive traffic to my blog. I’m not sure what that says about me; “Hey, Pinners, you have to look at all my projects, but I won’t look at yours unless your blog is in my Feedly.” :/

    I almost never look at my “home feed,” because there’s so much stuff there that I have absolutely no use for. And without any context, it’s hard to sort through it all and decide what you might actually want to try. I prefer blogs.

    I can’t remember the last time I repinned something. I find inspiring images elsewhere, which means I pin directly from the source. I collect those images pretty much the same way I used to tear out pictures from magazines and put them in a folder. Basically my Pinterest boards are a collection of ideas I might actually do some day. I’m constantly deleting pins when I realize they don’t fit any more. In order to keep all the background noise out, you really have to be a diligent curator.

  117. Completely agree with you, actually. Pinterest was fun and addicting in the beginning…like when I was nursing every hour with a newborn. This post has funny timing with how I have found pinterest most useful as a resource and not a regular site visited anymore. Sometimes, I even skip using it as a resource and go straight to Google. I much prefer using my time, when I have it, to read blogs vs perusing pinterest. If I go another route, lately, it is instagram. I used to discover new bloggers through pinterest that I could add to my reading list…but I find the discovery of new bloggers through instagram much more enjoyable. It seems more like a referral. Half the time, it seemed I would hit a dead end on the pinterest link, which is also frustrating. As you mentioned, I want to find and read from the original creator not pins within pins. I really enjoyed this post…I thought I was the only one feeling this way. Not sure what I will do, if my neighbor asks me one more time, “IS THAT FROM PINTEREST?”

  118. I don’t use Pinterest but I agree with you that we try to make our houses look perfect. I was realizing that if I cleaned my house and had good lighting, it could look way better than it does in real life.

  119. I discovered Pinterest through YOU, waaay back when no one else had even heard of it. I requested to join (and had to wait a few days to be approved) and spent many sleepless nights under my covers discovering and pinning away. I was in love. Now, I feel like it is full of 5 kajillion crochet projects that even my great grandmother would find unattractive and way more “middle school toilet paper roll craft projects”. (Not that there is anything wrong with crochet. I don’t know how to do it, I have no desire at tis time to learn, and I don’t want to wade through a bajillion posts on it.) Oh, I do find some gems. And I still am known to jump on after everyone goes to sleep and browse away, but I find less that speaks to me.

    …And as much as I can enjoy Pinterest, I’m super glad that I got married before Pinterest was invented!

    And if there was a way to search pinterest and EXCLUDE things (sad looking kid crafts, CROCHET, etc.) or maybe reinvent what exactly Craft/DIY means…that would rock my socks. I’m just sayin’.

  120. Believe it or not I am fairly new to pinterest. I was trying to avoid it, but my college age daughter set it up on my phone. Well, after seeing some really cute things around Halloween I decided we should host a party for my 11yr old daughter’s friends. I caught myself obsessing over styling the perfect table and being really grumpy with my daughter who was trying to help. That’s when I stopped dead in my tracks. This was suppose to be fun! The girls could care less how perfect anything was. I’m afraid that is what is happening to so many of us. We are trying to “style” our lives to perfection. That only leaves us feeling empty, unfulfilled and grumpy because we will never be able to be perfect. We need to live in the moment and accept the notion that sometimes “it is what it is!”

  121. Hi, I use Pinterest in the same way as I did a year ago but I do edit my boards every so often, removing things that don’t inspire me anymore. I’m very careful to try to give credit to the originator and pin from the source. I also follow a few carefully chosen pinners so I don’t get a lot of “low quality” pins. I agree that pinterest has become less “discerning” to my eye than it was at first, but I do use my boards when decorating or shopping so I like to have access to the things I pin. Also, I find it especially useful for pinning haircut ideas! And decorating or artistic inspiration.

  122. I did not take time out to read all the post, so if someone else posted this, I’ m sorry …..I am tired of clicking on someone’s thing that they pinned, then I have to click on that persons pin, just to get right back to where I started with still no instructions, directions etc…then it says FREE patterns or to find out how / what to do, still no go, can’t find it….I am really getting bored with Pinerest… I found that it is taking up too much of my valuable time…I have better things to do in my life than not to find what I am really wanting ( instructions, directions etc…) . I want to get on with the projects I want to make….I guess you can say I am using it LESS…so I LOVE it when you show / give instructions to your project..you are a keeper….love your guts too…LOL

  123. I totally agree with you Mandi about your good and not so good things about Pinterest. It is hard to have your own creativity when you can easily find it on Pinterest. However, I can get an idea from there and then create my own personal touches which makes it unique. It is frustrating when I come up with this amazing project idea and I go on Pinterest to only find out someone else has already thought of it.

    I discovered Pinterest a few years ago when I was in the Pottery Barn looking at something that I could make myself and started talking to a lady that mentioned Pinterest and then showed it to me on her phone. When I first got on it, I thought it was amazing and very overwhelming. Now I mainly use it for specific projects that I can go into websites or blogs for tutorials. I do occasionally pin from blogs that I follow. I also research on Google and find YouTube can be a great source for tutorials if you have the patience to watch the ones that are way too lengthy :))

    One thing I like about Pinterest is to see something that may be very expensive and be able to create my own version for practically nothing (or at least a lot cheaper). I sometimes still like to come up with my own ideas and stay away from Pinterest! :)

    I am amazed with all the talent out there, but we can still keep creating what is our own individual style….with sometimes a little inspiration from Pinterest.

  124. I love reading blogs because I like to hear the story and thoughts of others. With Pinterest, Facebook, and Twitter all you get is a partial view. From all reports, their also huge time sucks. I don’t use nor am I on any of them. I find it easier to create my own ideas with less input from other sources.

  125. I found this article really interesting. I can totally see your point of view for the most part. When I first joined Pinterest, a friend of mine had invited me because you could not join without the invitation. Once they stopped requiring an invitation I kind of felt like my secret world was invaded! Lol. I love that I can use Pinterest like a virtual inboard – instead of saving photos for inspiration on my hard drive or bookmarking a million blogs and webpages in my favorites, I have an organized solution. I do agree with some of the complaints mentioned above – I hate when bloggers pin the same thing to different boards or morning and night for the “different crowds” in case someone missed it. I hate entering giveaways where I have to like and follow a bunch of people clogging up my Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, Instagram, g+, whatever. Once the giveaway is over, I start unfollowing people for sure.

    But in spite of this, I still love Pinterest. We have discovered some great recipes, made some fun crafts, and found some great small businesses to support. My house definitely isn’t perfect but my kids are not neglected, and I try to keep in mind that when someone posts a photo, we’re only seeing the best of the best and not e behind the scenes (usually!). Pinterest is my unwinding time at night after the kids are down and before hubby gets home from work.

  126. As a new blogger and a teacher, I was very interested in your comments about our “consumerism.” I’ve done mini-lessons in my classroom about how we read online. As a group, we’ve noticed we’re mostly “clickers,” not readers. Our ability to sustain attention and stamina as readers feels at a low. Again, as a teacher, I’ve been working with my students to write what matters to them. I ask them, what touches you? What stays with you? What ideas and thoughts are important to you? I am hoping – and crossing my fingers – to help these kiddos find their own voice. I started my new blog to put my money where my mouth is. My old blog from last summer was some sort of cheapo imitation knock off hack of what I admired in the many blogs I read. I can’t write THEM. I need to write ME. And I’m aware no one may ever, ever read what I write because I’m literally one little blog in a very tall and Pinteresting haystack. However, the thought that someone MIGHT read … holds me more accountable to myself as a writer and crafter of words. Thanks for the good read.

  127. Roundthegumtree says:

    You know, I don’t mind the related pins. Sometimes they are useful, but in fairness I have my computer zoomed into about 200% so I don’t see them unless I scroll down or the image is tiny.

  128. For me, pinterest is just a tool, so instead of little scraps of magazines or newspaper, I can just find it and pin it. So it’s just an online binder. So convenient. I got in over a year ago, late to the game. I don’t take any of it personally. I don’t feel any inadequacy. Take what I need and leave the rest. I’m not a blogger, just a busy mom, doing my best.

  129. Yes. Pinterest can be very overwhelming! I used to pin just about everything and now I am lots more selective. I am trying to live a Less is More life and Pinterest is one of those places where less pins gives more ability to be selective and do away with the pins that just cluttered my feed and my brain! I used to rip things out of magazines planning to file them in binders, but Pinterest has become my substitute for that time consuming task! Thanks for sharing your perspective!

  130. I use Pinterest to help me “file” ideas for sewing, embroidery and for DIY ideas, but lately I feel like I never have an original idea of my own. I think I used to before Pinterest. I almost always go to the links associated to see if I like the tutorials or to see if they are doable for me before I pin them.

  131. I would love if you could ask him to cut out the related pins. These are making me want to quit Pinterest. At least the option to opt out. Thanks for this post. Very timely.

  132. Thanks for this post!!! I feel like I just took a deep breath reading this. I agree completely in every way.

  133. I meant like a sy of relief breath. Lol!(Didn’t want that to come across in a bad way.)

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