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Tell us your design dilemmas! Also, tell me about losing home/finding home.
Last week, Jesse and Gray and I relaunched our YouTube channel, The Spiral Lab, which we are taking in a divergent design direction. Meaning lots of stuff about interior design, home renovation, and DIY. It’s just our happy place right now, but of course everything we look at is always through the lens of neurodivergence and disability justice, so there will continue to be plenty of that as well.
I will admit, I am super excited about this new direction, and in the midst of a few really hard weeks (health insurance fuckery and cascading challenges/hardships that are normally called executive dysfunction but which are really just being sick in capitalist America), planning and making YouTube videos about interior design, the meaning of home, and the importance of beauty … well, it’s what’s bringing the joy these days.
Jesse had the brilliant idea (and technical knowhow) not only to produce and edit videos, but also to put our work out as a podcast—and to host it here in Substack! I’m thrilled that a bunch of you have already downloaded our first episode, The Meaning of Maximalism, which you can find in The Spiral Lab tab in the navigation menu above, and also on all the platforms where you listen to podcasts! We would love to have you leave us a five star review and spread the word.
We’re going to be playing around with all sorts of video formats, including the talking heads format of The Meaning of Maximalism, but also more vlog-style videos including thrift store trips, DIY home renovations, furniture upcycling, and maybe even architecture and design tours around Philadelphia!
I will still be doing the occasional livestream, including one this Thursday, 16 February at 1:00 pm EST called Can Maximalism | Cluttercore Suite Your Neurodivergent Sensory Style?
Maximalism and cluttercore have come under fire recently as "pathological” (because you know, everything so-called “normal” people don’t understand has to be a pathology…) but you know me—I reject the pathology paradigm, even for design styles!
Minimalism is often offered up as the ultimate "life hack" for ADHDers, and as an almost neurologically predetermined preference for Autistics, but in the livestream this Thursday, we mean to debunk those myths. I’ll be talking with Paint and John, two friends from DDS (the online community for neurodivergent creatives) about why we’re drawn to maximalism as neurodivergent people and how maximalism really works to create pleasure and function in our lives and homes.
We’d love to see you there live in the chat, but remember, all of our livestreams are available afterward for you to view in your own Spiral Time!
Coming up in a future livestream (still to be scheduled, but stay tuned), we will be interviewing our friend Devon Price, author of Unmasking Autism, about all the divergent design stuff we didn’t get to in our first interview with him.
And what about YOU? So many of you have left comments, or emailed me, with terrific ideas about divergent design, and I’d love to hear more of your thoughts and questions so that we can address them (and maybe even interview you!) in future video podcasts and livestreams.
Ask Us (me Jesse and Gray) Anything! What are your design dilemmas? Maybe we can help. Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
I’m also seeking interview subjects for some writing projects on the topic of losing home/finding home, and the relationship of your interior spaces to your interior Selves/mental health, and the ways that design in your home serves as a disability accommodation. If you’d be willing to talk to me, either reply to this newsletter or email me at email@example.com.