An Inspiration Board (for a reader)

One of my more recent struggles has been to come up with the perfect gift for my little sister on her graduation day. My sister is so important and unique to me that I wanted to find the perfect gift to show her how much I care. For weeks I scoured Pinterest and top blog sites, but to no avail. Last week after many failed attempts at locating a gift idea I had a plan. My master plan was to take my sister out for coffee and figure out exactly what she wanted and get that for her.

Over the course of our coffee experience I tried to pick apart our conversation and even on multiple occasions came right out and asked her what she hoped to receive, but my stubborn sister refused to give me any ideas. That night I racked my brain trying to come up with the perfect gift. I started a list of all things I knew my sister liked:






And after a good fifteen minutes or so of staring blankly at the list I began to form an idea in my head that included many aspects of her hobbies and personality. I decided to create an inspiration board for her office/study room that is inspired by the books that she reads and the wisdom she gains from her personal reading adventures.

I hopped into the car and took a journey to the nearest Hobby Lobby. In a matter of ten minutes I had loaded my cart with cute paper, a frame, washi tape, a stamp, an ink pad, index cards, duct tape, tacks, and four cork boards.


The first step in the process involved decorating the index cards. I turned them from drab to fab with duct tape, washi tape, and a stamp. I chose a coffee mug stamp because of her passion for a good cup of coffee and then used a teal ink pad for the stamp because I know she likes the color a lot. I didn’t want the ink to be too bold because my hope was that she would use the index cards to record wisdom and quotes from the books she reads. The teal ink pad I chose provided more of a water-mark appearance. It turned out exactly as I’d hoped.


The next step in the process involved me lining one side of each cork board with a strip of the duct tape. Once again simple duct tape embellishment made a boring, plain cork board more aesthetic and charming. Lastly, I used a sheet of burlap, chevron scrapbook paper and measured it to fit into the 8×10 frame that I found. On the frame I recorded a quote that I knew she would appreciate:

“To read is to live a thousand lives…” (this quote is a conglomeration of several quotes. I found it online.)

My husband and I broke into my parents’ house while they were dropping off my sister at graduation (not really, we have a key) and we mounted and hung the inspiration board on the wall.


My sister is planning to major in English. She is an avid reader and loves to record quotes from her favorite books. This is a passion we both share and a big part of our relationship. I think it is only fitting to provide her an organized and coordinated location to hang her notes of wisdom.

I’m definitely not the most crafty and artistic person, but I really enjoy gifting personalized originals that come from the heart. I couldn’t think of a better way to celebrate my sister’s intellectual spirit and passion for reading.

Have you ever made or received a personalized gift? Please share in the comments below!


One thought on “An Inspiration Board (for a reader)

  1. Awesome idea!! I actually ordered my best friend who is also Avery’s Godmother something on Etsy that was personalized for her. It said “The only thing better than having you as a best friend is Avery having you as a Godmother.” It’s super cute and she loved it!


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