Friday, March 8, 2013

My Unofficial Guide to Using Pinterest

These days, it seems like everyone has heard about Pinterest. It is a great place to find inspiration and visually organize your ideas. You can also use Pinterest to waste a whole lot of time. I like it because instead of browsing through annoying bookmarks, trying to figure out just what exactly each one is, I can see a picture of each idea in an organized way. In order to use Pinterest to my advantage, and not as a huge time drain, here are the rules I follow:

  • I only browse through categories that I know are going to be helpful to me. Yes, I could spend 3 hours looking at memes about cats, but where would I be? Nowhere. And really, I don't do much browsing. I take a quick peek at the latest pins from my peeps and call it good. 
  • When I see a pin I am interested in, I click through the link to the website. That way I will know if it is a bad link, or spam, or uses cream-of-mystery soup. Nothing like deciding to go make those salted caramel rice crispies only to find that the link was for automotive repair. 
  • If the link is legit (usually they are) then I ask myself 'Am I going to make this?' As in, is there a very good possibility that I would actually accomplish that idea. Making a wreath out of newspaper roses may look cool, but I am not going to invest 28.7 hours hand-rolling the flowers. I only pin what I feel to be realistic and worth doing. 
  • I do have a few boards that are 'Inspiration' but I try to keep them brief. I have one for Colors and one for Art. 
  • Pinning is all fine and dandy, but most people stop there. My goal with Pinterest is to actually accomplish the ideas I have found. Every month when I am making up my menu and shopping list, I look on Pinterest and find several ideas and recipes I want to try. That way I can add the necessary supplies to my list, or add a recipe to my menu. (Don't let all this fool you. I am not that organized. My spice drawer is most certainly NOT alphabetized.)
  • When I make a recipe, or use a tutorial or idea, I move the pin to my "Mission Accomplished" board. That way, I still have the pins in case I want them again, but they are not cluttering up my other boards. It also allows me to see if I am actually using the ideas I find. And guess what? I am only a few pins away from 200! A lot of them are recipes, closely followed by crafty stuff. And most of them have turned out well. 
  • My friend and I have a shared board. We pin things to that board that we have made so we can see what we've been up to. I have found several really great recipes thanks to my friend  via our shared board, and we leave each other comments about any changes we made to the recipe or what we thought of it. 
  • Occasionally I will peruse my boards and delete anything that no longer interests me for one reason or another. That way I don't end up with a zillion pins that I have to wade through to find one idea. 
And there you have it. Me blathering on and on about Pinterest. If you made it through, congratulations! Now go and make something!!

P.S. Here are my Pin Boards.  Here is the link to my Mission Accomplished board. 

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