Monday, September 27, 2010

a bit more fall

Remember my fall centerpiece? Those lovely yellow mums gave it their all for two weeks.

Once they started to fade, I plotted a way to redo the arrangement with items I had stashed around the house.
I decided to remove the hobnail vase and replace it with a rustic wire basket I picked up at Goodwill.

I filled the basket with fresh fall apples, but the arrangement still needed something.

So, I poked around in one of my “fall” storage boxes and found some floral picks and silk leaves. Ta-da! The kitchen table looks even more like fall! Don’t you just love any easy change?


Thursday, September 23, 2010

ruffle your sweater

I spotted this cardigan at Banana Republic a few weeks ago.

It’s even lovelier in person. The ruffles are made from several different textures and types of fabric. As much as I wanted to take it home with me, I’m not the kind of girl who buys $80 sweaters.

However, I’ve been needing a new long sleeved white cardigan and I had this old H&M sweater hanging in my closet.

It didn’t take me long to spirit the sweater off to my sewing room and start reconstructing it into something more fun. I cut straight up the middle, folded the edges under, pinned, and sewed.

Next, I chose fabric for my ruffles. I like the two-tone look the original has, but I wanted to be able to wear this cardigan with a lot of different outfits, so I went for a monochromatic look.

I created my ruffles from a white t-shirt, a sheer cream scarf, and the white fabric from the inside of a necktie. I simply pinned the ruffles to the sweater and sewed them down.

I think my version is a bit fluffier than the original, but I’m pretty happy with it.

I may sew on a button closure, but for now, I love using a sweet little earing to cinch the cardigan together.

It also looks pretty cute belted.

Let me know if you make your own ruffled cardigan, I’d love to see it!

I'm linking to Wendy's party!


Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Wonderland Revisited

Since I just posted the scrapbook I made for our wonderland party, and since parties are the theme of this week’s CSI Challenge….

I decided a little recap of the wonderland tea party was in order.

It started with some tea bag inspired invites, sent by the Mad Hatter him er herself.

Next, I made some fluffy flower pom-poms to add some whimsy to the party.

The day of, my sister helped me string the pom-poms from a canopy.

We set the table with vintage cloths, fiestaware tea cups, and ball jars filled with wildflowers.

Mismatched real chairs added substance, but weren’t too formal.

A flock of yard sale flamingos gave a nod to the wonderland theme.

Of course, no party is complete without food!

We enjoyed “eat me” lemon filled cupcakes.

“Drink me” flavored iced teas and lemonade.

And yummy finger sandwiches.

We wore our hats proudly.

And held onto them when things became blustery.

And ended the party with a lovely game of croquet.

It was such a fun and special party to plan and enjoy, it just might have to become a family tradition!


Sunday, September 19, 2010

The Un-Scrapbook

Confession: I love scrapbook paper, fun stickers, and all the cute scrapbooking tools – but I rarely ever scrapbook. My mom celebrated her birthday last week and she requested a book of all the pictures from our wonderland tea party. I wanted to create something more exciting than a regular photo album, but I knew a full-fledged scrapbook wasn’t in the cards. So, I created a scrapbook compromise!

Here’s how you can make your own,

Print your pictures to a standard size (I went with 4x6) but buy an album a size larger (my mom’s is for 5x7 photos). I also bought a pack of scrapbook paper with matching letter stickers and embellishments. Since the album had a cute little window on the front, I used some of the scrapbook paper and stickers to make a “celebrate Wonderland” title.

If your photos fall into different categories, use scrapbook paper and stickers to make section dividers.

A bit of pretty paper and a few simple embellishments go a long way towards turning ordinary photos into something special.

I used a paper cutter to make sure all my scrapbook rectangles had nice, clean edges.

I was able to get three 5x7 rectangles out of each sheet of 12x12 scrapbook paper. If you wanted to make more of a scrapbook diary, it would be easy to glue a picture to one piece of scrapbook paper and a journal entry to the other side.

If regular scrapbooking isn’t for you – give the un-scrapbook a try!

Bonus fun wrapping idea:

Since the photos were of our tea party, I wrapped the album in a tea towel printed with teapots.

Have any other non-traditional scrapbooking ideas to share? I'd love to hear about them!


Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Pumpkin remix

Since it's been a bit of a crazy week, I thought I'd re-post one of my favorite projects from last September.

When I found these little guys at the Dollar Tree last week, I knew they would be the perfect candidates for trying out this faux mercury glass spray paint trick I found over on the DIY Show Off.

This is one of those projects that looks really simple and easy when you see it on someone else’s blog, but in reality becomes a little more complicated when 1. You don’t really know what you’re doing, and 2. You don’t have the all the supplies used in the tutorial. Considering those two little details, I’m pretty happy with the way my fake mercury glass fruit turned out.

Now, If you’d like to hear all the harrowing details of making these, including how I got brown paint in my eye ( I kid. I technically only got it in my eyelashes.) Please keep reading.
Step 1. Acquire cheap fake fruit.

Step 2. Jab a bamboo skewer into the bottom of the fruit and stick it in some old floral foam.

Step 3. Go nuts with silver spray paint. I used Rustoleum Bright Coat Silver.

Everything was going fine until this point.

Step 4. While the silver paint is still wet, splatter the pumpkin with some kind of brown or metallic brown paint. I only had brown acrylic craft paint on hand, so I used that. I figured I could use an old tooth brush to splatter the paint. Ha. I know that splatter painting is one of those elementary school crafts that kids do all the time, so I didn’t think I needed to find any instructions. Twenty minutes later, after I successfully splatter painted my hair, face, and clothes, and only managed to land about three drops of paint on the apple, I seriously re-thought my decision to tackle this without instructions. I wish I’d gotten Brad to video tape the whole process, because I looked pretty hilarious covered in brown paint, shaking a tooth brush at a bunch of silver fruit. Eventually, I managed to get some paint to splatter on the fruit, but I could have saved myself a lot of trouble if I’d read these helpful hints first.

Anyhow, despite my acrylic freckles, I think I like my new little centerpiece, and I’d even do it again – but I’d read the instructions first! I hope y’all enjoy these pics of the fruits of my labor (ba bum ching! I couldn’t resist!)


Monday, September 13, 2010

more fallish decor

Over the weekend, my itch to take the roost from super summery to a hint of fall, expanded to include the living room and entry hall.

During the summer, the hall looked like this:
The coffee table like this:
And the small bookcase like this:
Shopping the house (except for the flowers) provided everything I needed to create a new look for free.
Let’s take a closer look.
My first step was to use a book as the base. I didn’t have a large book in a color I liked, so I covered an ugly book with extra dropcloth fabric.
Next, I used one of the twig frames from the hallway as a tray.
I topped the tray with a bundle of twine-wrapped books (idea stolen from Pottery Barn) and added a vintage safety pin for extra texture.
For some height, I added a jar filled with black and white photos (idea stolen from BHG)
Because good things come in threes, I also added a little bird votive. After looking at these pictures, I switched the green votive for a creamy yellow.
On the bookcase, a few fall flowers and a homey sign add some softness and comfort.
It’s starting to look a lot less like summer around here!

Anyone else change up their coffee table with the seasons?

I'm linking to the show and tell party @
Show and Tell Green