Embracing Change.

Hello blog friends, it’s been some time. Let’s catch up.

We’re about 1 month away from our [fingers crossed] last move for a little while. I’m tired of packing up, moving, unpacking over the last few years. But there is something kind of great about moving & redesigning to fit new parameters and getting creative with what you already have. So besides the budget planning, this is where the rest of my thoughts have been lately.

A new creative space.

new office sketchI just feel like if I can create a great space that inspires, great thoughts will come and creative juices will flow.

Being on a budget, many of the details/ideas are DIY.

First: A new coat of paint on my desk and on the file cabinets to set a matching set of tones are first on the list. Right now I’ve got more of a crazy un-matching color scheme that doesn’t really work together or inspire calmness.

Second: Washi tape. Washi tape will be present in the new space. I’ve got plans to create a washi tape calendar and washi tape border details arount whatever prints/images are inspiring at the moment. That way, they’re easily switched out and leave no marks on the wall afterwards.

Third: A chalkboard for ideas.

Fourth: A string of photos, cards and mementos that speak to me hung with twine above the desk.

Fifth: Succulents/cactus plants for company.

I’ve been corralling ideas/inspiration here.

I might find room for a collage pin board in there too, and I’m so hoping that the room we use for an office has lighting like this.

We’ll work with what we have, once we get there.. but it’s fun to dream & to plan. The details in the plan are what make it special.

May you notice the special details today. Have a happy one!

Darling Little Things: DIY Flower Vases

Fresh flowers in the house give it that home feeling. About 2 months ago, I started adding plants and fresh flower arrangements all over our house. It’s a great way to add in some color while keeping a more neutral design palette otherwise in the house.

Before I started buying plants/flower bouquets – I started looking for containers to hold flowers. I have a nice large vase that I like, but I also like unconventional and nontraditional pieces as well. I picked up jars, a ceramic water pitcher, and a couple of little glass jars from the dollar store.

I really love this vase that I found on clearance (!!!) at World Market for about $7 a while back.

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I didn’t have a specific use for it at the time, but everybody needs a nice vase right?

When I started looking for more containers to hold different flower arrangements around the house, I found that I really wanted to try to do a similar look as this vase but on a smaller scale.

Insert DIY creativity.

I was browsing Pinterest and playing around on the internet and found several sites with free printable vintage labels, like these cigar box labels.

I selected and printed a few of my favorites at a local office store for less than $1.

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Up close, you can see that the label isn’t completely flat against the glass. This particular jar has an interesting shape that curves in places that makes it a little more difficult to work with. But from afar (which is how I see it) – it looks just as vintage and awesome as the one I bought.

I love how this turned out & it gives more personality to this smaller arrangement.

Don’t you want to go buy fresh bouquets now & add some pretty to your place?

A fabulous weekend DIY

I’ve been working on a bedroom makeover board as well as a living room update board on Pinterest. I’ve been incorporating changes into our house & the latest detail is adding a variety of prints all around the house.

Adding art to your space can put a hurtin on your wallet or it can be an opportunity to be creative. I chose the latter because I would prefer to stretch my dollars to do more rather than less. (Wouldn’t we all?)

This is a very simple, quick DIY with a huge amount of instant gratification.

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I found some basic, simple black frames from Target. Three frames for $9

I had been playing around with phrases and fonts and chose a more affectionate option for this project because these frames will be going in our bedroom.

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I took the glass out of the frame and used it as a guide to figure out where I wanted the words to be inside the frame. I traced it once I was happy with it.

imageI recently picked up one of these paper cutters at Hobby Lobby. I can’t believe I haven’t been using one for my home projects for all of this time! My only issue is the size of the cutter. I had to trim the page a bit to fit it, but it gives a much cleaner line and doesn’t ruffle the paper as much as cutting it by hand. So, if you don’t have one of these- I definitely recommend going to get one. This one was $5.99 & with a 40% coupon, only cost me about $4 bucks. The bigger ones are pretty affordable with a 40% off coupon as well. It’s on my want list.

I popped the glass back in & added the page & voila! Simple & beautiful.

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For now, it’s sitting with a couple succulents and with our “I Love You Because” frame that we write love notes back and forth on. I have plans to add at least 2 more (maybe 3 or 4), different sizes & different prints.

I have plans brewing to add some to our side tables and some to go with some oversized prints on the mantle as well. They’re just propped up against the wall, not using their stands. I’m loving a layered print look right now & can’t wait to add more!

Quick. Easy. Customizable. Beautiful.

The perfect DIY!

Photostrip love.

I’m sliding focus to smaller details around our house. A brighter, cheerier rug for our living room to open it up a bit more. Curtains. Throw pillows. Updated photos and different photo displays around the house.

I’ve pinned tutorials about how to create photo strips in Photoshop and just haven’t gotten around to playing around with it.

But I found an easier way: Boothgram.

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Once you go to Boothgram, it asks you to log into your Instagram account. You are then given the option to choose four photos, either your own or photos you’ve liked. Those photos are then laid into a photo strip (up to four photos and in the order you choose them).

Once you’re happy with a layout, you save the file. I saved my files and placed them into a Word document (I didn’t change the size and fit 2 to a page) and sent them to Staples to print a higher quality. You could also print at home and save that $0.59 a page but I’m pretty happy with the quality and $1.50 price tag for my two pages of photo strips.

For now, this website looks as though it loads photos from Instagram exclusively. I may get around to tinkering in Photoshop for non-Instagram photos eventually but most of my favorite photos get shared through Instagram anyway, so this site is a winner in my book!

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Revamping a Lamp (Before+After)

My decorating tendencies consist of picking up pieces that excite me when I see them. I’m not saying that’s a bad thing.. the pieces you choose to furnish and decorate your home should make you happy. But up until recently, that was pretty much all I went by when choosing pieces.

That method left me with a lot of mismatched pieces that I like individually but don’t really love altogether.

Recently I’ve picked up where I left off some months ago and dove back into finishing the decor around our apartment. I’ve been purging closets and drawers of random things and started really giving more thought to the pieces I have around the house.

Do I love this? Do I need it? If its functions, can I make it work better somehow?

Case 1

before lampThis lamp came into existence solely because I loved the shade. I purchased this shade when I was a freshman in college and wanted it somewhere in my dorm room. I bought a plain black base with some interesting details and that’s how it’s been. 6 years later, that lamp still looks that and has sat on Josh’s night stand. He has not been a fan of it, but it’s free so it stayed there.

Until last weekend.

I mentioned incorporating turquoise blue and yellow accent pieces/accessories into the living room. I decided to donate the shade since it’s the perfect example of something fun and vibrant but doesn’t really match anything else I have or the look I’m going for.

Target [not surprisingly] has been a place of inspiration for redecorating and incorporating neutral color and patterns into our house lately. None of the pieces are boring,  just a little bit more sophisticated and more gender neutral that Josh and I can both be happy with. I picked up a lovely white lamp shade with subtle details.

I attacked the black lamp base with the same turquoise-blue spray paint I used to give some bang to those black picture frames I found recently.

after lamp side tableI’m so excited about the way it turned out! Still not totally sure about the blue candlesticks right next to it.. I’ll probably switch those out soon but overall – a much better look.