I wish you a day full of family, friends, fellowship, and food. Could a day get any better than that?
Happy Thanksgiving everyone! I want to thank each and everyone of you who reads my little corner of the internet and offers up comments, questions, and encouragement on a weekly basis. This blog has been a fun, challenging creative outlet that inspires me continue dreaming and making. I'm thankful that I took the plunge and started writing around this time last year. I am also thankful for you, the reader!
I wish you a day full of family, friends, fellowship, and food. Could a day get any better than that?
Above is the finished product of the project I bemoaned on Instagram a few days ago. I'm very pleased with the results, but you may need help completing it if you have less than stellar upper body strength like me. This project was inspired by the Birch Wood Tealight Holders from the ladies at A Beautiful Mess. These provide a striking centerpiece that can be used for any occasion. I know I'll definitely be using them throughout the entire season!
I foraged all of the greenery from my parents' backyard. I then accented everything with the faux fern leaves that I spray painted gold for my white wine tasting back at the beginning of the summer.
You can pick up these adorable woodland creatures from CostPlus World Market. I save up their weekly coupons and then go buy stuff like this in bulk!
Happy Thanksgiving friends!
DIY: Giant Paper Snowflake
I'm spending most of this short work week counting the minutes as they tick by in my cubicle and crafting for the Thanksgiving table runner I'm in charge of on Thursday. However, last night I got distracted by this incredibly easy paper snowflake DIY. I know I'm getting way ahead of myself, but I was itching to try this out as I'm helping my mom throw an ELF themed Christmas party in mid-December. Here's the finished product:
Isn't that beautiful? And it's SO easy! This is my favorite type of DIY because you get a whole lot of bang for your buck. Here's what you'll need:
Instead of showing you step-by-step pictures of me making these, you should just watch this YouTube video that shows you every step perfectly. I made three of these giant snowflakes in about 15 minutes and I plan to throw some more together tonight.
If you prefer a less 3D decor option, check out these instructions for some more traditional cutout paper snowflakes. Happy crafting!
Favorite Things: Gold Accents
My current favorite decor color scheme is self-evident to any one who comes over to my house: Gold Accents. I recently picked up a can of gold spray paint from Home Depot and have not been able to put it down. As of now I've implemented the Midas Touch on the following items:
My neighbors have started asking me what else I plan to paint gold every time we run into each other. It's getting out of control. Here are some other fun Gold DIYs that I found on (where else?), Pinterest.
Gilded Feathers and Tasting Glasses
If any one follows me on Pinterest you'll know that I've been really into gold DIY's and decor lately. Ann Ham and I decided to take the gold color scheme and run with it for our White Wine Tasting decor.
First, I took some inspiration from this Style Me Pretty post and crafted some gilded feathers. Here's what you'll need for the Gilded Feathers:
ONE: Grab a handful of feathers and hold them by their stem. Carefully spray paint the feathers about halfway down the stem, careful not to spray paint your entire hand in the process like I did.
TWO: Once the spray paint drys, drag the feather tips through a bit of the gold glitter paint.
THREE: Let the feathers dry completely on a flat surface.
I then popped handfuls of feathers in different sized vases/jars and displayed them throughout the house. I liked the look of them so much that they're now our dining room table centerpiece!
Second, I knew I wanted to decorate the blank wall behind the wine tasting table with the same gold color scheme without breaking the bank. I ended up putting together a fun backdrop of gilded fern leaves that really made the wine tasting table the focal point of the party. Here's what you'll need for the Gilded Fern Backdrop:
ONE: Use your wire cutters to break down the faux greenery into single stems, keeping them long enough to be taped to the wall later.
TWO: Spread the leaves out in a well ventilated (preferably outside area) and spray paint away!
THREE: After the leaves are completely dry, use your washi tape to tape them to the wall in any pattern you want. Don't worry about making it look too perfect or symmetrical, you want this backdrop to look natural!
Finally, these Gilded Tasting Glasses (aka shot glasses), aren't really decor or DIY, but they were one of my favorite finds for the party. At our Red Wine Tasting back in April, it was hard to keep the wine tasting sizes small enough in regular, large wine glasses. This time around, to prevent any over-indulgence, we wanted to find smaller glasses for the tasting portion of the night.
Ann Ham found these amazing Whiskey/Espresso Heavy Base shot glasses on Amazon and we immediately snapped up 12 of them. Upon arrival, each guest received a shot glass, which was their perfect-sized "tasting glass". They then received a regular wine glass so they could have a normal-sized pour of their favorite white with dinner. It worked out great because everyone was able to taste each wine and still drive home safely at the end of the night!
In all, the decorations for the night (including several bunches of fresh flowers, not pictured here) cost $29.32. I think this is a great price, considering that I'll be able to reuse everything. Gold is a universal color scheme that can work well in any season. I'm looking forward to breaking these back out for Thanksgiving and Christmas.
I hope you all have a relaxing and inspiring Labor Day Weekend - I can't believe it's almost September! I've got to squeeze a little more summer fun while I can and will spend most of this weekend at the pool. What about you?
DIY: Upcycled Table
My friend Kat recently moved into her first grown-up house right around her birthday. She previously lived in a little apartment that was largely populated by IKEA furniture. I thought, "what better present for a new place than some cute, grown-up furniture?" I went rummaging around my new favorite home goods store, Consignment Furniture Depot, and found this festively painted table for $120 (originally around $400). Their business model involves selling gently-used home furnishings, jewelry, etc. that is decreased in price monthly the longer it sits in their showroom. A lamp you find for $100 on May 18th may be $80 when you come back on June 18th. It becomes a fun game of bargain hunting and deciding whether it's worth the risk of someone else scooping up an item to wait another month for the price to lower.
Anywho, so I bought this table and set about the task of repurposing it to fit Kat's laid-back, cool-color temp loving style. Here's what you'll need:
TWO: Remove any decorative hardware that you don't want covered in paint. This table came with these wheeled, brass claws that I quickly removed and set aside.
THREE: Cover your hardware-free table with a liberal coat of gold spray paint. As you can see below, I also gave my own coffee table a fresh look while working on Kat's present. Let the spray paint dry before moving on to the next step.
FOUR: Once the spray paint is dry, paint a layer of Annie Sloan Chalk Paint in Duck Egg (or whatever color you choose). Annie Sloan named her product "Chalk Paint", not because you can scrawl all over your finished product like a chalk board, but because of the paint's "velvety, matte finish". It's also designed to stick to just about anything (wood, concrete, metal, plastic, earthenware, etc.) with little-to-no prep (i.e. sanding or priming) so the drop cloth is extremely important if you're working inside. I achieved the paint coverage seen in the picture below without sanding down the table beforehand AND with only one coat of paint. Pretty snazzy, right?
FIVE: Step back, sip your beer, and sit on your porch swing while your first coat of paint dries. Apply a second coat if you feel the piece needs it, but I opted out!
SIX: Once the paint dries, grab your sandpaper and carefully distress different areas of the table. The idea is to sand off just enough of the Chalk Paint that the layer of gold spray paint shows through a bit. I sanded around the edge of the table and along the ridges of the legs where the piece would naturally age over time.
SEVEN: Because I'm a dummy who covered herself in paint wax without a friend around, I wasn't able to snap photos of the waxing process but I promise it's super easy and the most fun part of this project. You'll want to start with the Annie Sloan Clear Wax. Grab your rag and scoop out a dollop of clear wax. Everyone has seen The Karate Kid right? Say it with me, "Wax on. Wax off. Wax on. Wax off.". Work quickly and try not to overthink it as you cover the table in wax, rubbing off excess wax with a clean rag. You're going for a thin, textured layer. The clear wax creates texture for the dark wax to stick to later as well as a water repellent surface.
EIGHT: Finally, break out the Annie Sloan Dark Wax. Don't be scared! Scoop out a slightly smaller dollop of dark wax and start working it into the clear wax. It is super easy to wipe away excess dark wax, so don't freak out if you feel like you've used too much. You can also use a short, stiff paintbrush to stipple the dark wax into the clear wax, creating a different texture here and there. At this point, you can decide how distressed you want your table to look and use a little or a lot of this fun treatment.
***If the wax scares you, here are some more tutorials that I found helpful from Annie Sloan's website***
Here are some pictures of the finished product in Kat's room. I'll post some close-ups of the sanding step as well as the final look on my coffee table later this week. I'm currently rifling through my embarassingly large coffee table book collection to decide which ones I want to display for the next couple of months.
Let me know if you'd like to see more large DIY projects. This one was super fun to do and write about. Good luck with your own projects!
I'm an Anthropologie girl in a corporate world.