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EASY DIY FALL APPLE WREATH

EASY DIY FALL APPLE WREATH

How to make an easy apple fall wreath

Hello blog readers I am back! Some of you may not know this but my blog has been gone for nearly 3 weeks.  I had a notification of a comment from a reader and when I went to respond poof… my blog had disappeared!  I’ll keep this brief because nobody wants to read a novel but after a week of scratching our heads we had to call in professionals to look into some deep coding details. Basically I had reached a data limit with my old hosting company.  Without any notice they pulled the plug and tech support offered no help in solving the problem.  I’m happy to say we’re back up and running, we’ve switched hosting companies and this shouldn’t ever happen again.  My apologies to everyone… ok so let’s move along here and make a fall apple wreath!

How to make an easy apple fall wreath

First off you may be thinking why apples? I’m a pumpkin loving nut just like everyone else but this fall I was craving something a little different so I went with apples.  I must say I’m happy with how it turned out and I love the cute pop of color from the apples.

Instead of floral stems I went with a garland for the greenery because that’s what was on sale.  A great bonus about using garland is I didn’t need to dig out my wire cutters… just pull the leaves off and you’re good to go!

Fall wreath ideas

SUPPLIES NEEDED

18 inch grapevine wreath form $4.99

2 basic leaf garlands 17.99 at 50% off= $17.99

1 bundle of small plastic apples 6.99 @40% off =4.19

Ribbon 3.99 at 50% off= $1.99

Scissors

Hot glue gun

2-3 hot glue sticks

Total cost: $29.16

INSTRUCTIONS

How to make an easy apple fall wreath steps

1.  Begin by threading a piece of ribbon through the top of the wreath and set aside.  Pull the leaves off the floral garland and hot glue.  Be sure to glue the leaves in different directions so it looks extra fluffy.

2.  Once you’ve glued all the leaves on begin gluing the apples.  I know… it’s complicated.

How to make an easy apple fall wreath steps

3.  Turn the wreath over and make a knot to create a hanging loop.  Pull the loop to the back of the wreath and secure with hot glue.

4.  Arrange the remaining ribbon around the wreath and secure in random places with hot glue.  Poof all done!  I kept my ribbon connected with the loop in the back and just pulled the ribbon to the front, feel free to cut it if that’s more convenient. I had a hard time deciding if I wanted to add the ribbon or not. I loved both looks but in the end I decided the ribbon gave a bit of pizazz, but it’s your choice.

fall apple decor

Fall apple decor

I love the homey comfort of apples this time of year and I can’t get over how cute and realistic these apples look.  This wreath costing under $30 and the fact that I only had one hot glue burn is what I call success my friends!

Be sure to check out my holidays category for some of other fall projects and decor, including my favorite fall potpourri and how to bleach pinecones.  Take care!

DIY EASY SUMMER HYDRANGEA WREATH

DIY EASY SUMMER HYDRANGEA WREATH

DIY Summer Hydrangea and Rose Wreath

Our back deck is nearly done, I’m just waiting on Brian to finish a few small details and then it will be up on the blog.  In the meantime I’ve noticed how lonely our door looks and decided to make a nice summery wreath for it.  I chose hydrangeas and roses because they’re my favorite summer flowers.  I’m in love with the contrast against our new teal door (Sophisticated Teal from Home Depot) and especially the striped bow!  Stripes are one of my favorite patterns ever, it goes with everything and always puts a smile on my face.

I know I’ve mentioned this before but I’m still mourning the loss of Pier One.  I’m tempted to walk around in a black veil.  Oh Pier One you were so good to me, and I especially loved buying your wreaths.  Sniff sniff.  So it’s time for me to step up my wreath making game, and this pretty summery hydrangea and rose wreath was a perfect way to dive back in.  It’s been so long since I made a wreath I forgot how much fun it is!  Below I’ll show you how I made this easy wreath in under 45 minutes.

DIY Summer Hydrangea and Rose Wreath

SUPPLIES NEEDED

18 inch twig or vine wreath form

Hydrangea flowers

Rose flowers

Scissors

Wire cutters (for the flowers)

2 inch wire ribbon

Craft wire

Hot glue gun, with extra glue sticks

DIY Summer Hydrangea and Rose Wreath

INSTRUCTIONS

The hardest part of any wreath usually is making the bow, or at least for me it is.  I really hesitated showing you my bow making steps, only because I lack confidence in my skills.  I will say I chose a simple bow style and I really like the simplicity of it.  However, if you’re a bow making rock star feel free to make one of your own style.  There are lots of great tutorials on how to make more complex bows on YouTube.

How to make a simple bow

I like to keep my ribbon attached to the spool so I don’t waste any ribbon.  First I pull out a long tail, then I create my first loop and secure it with craft wire.  Next I make a second bow loop and attach it to the first loop with wire.

how to make a simple bow

I repeat the process on the other side making a third and fourth loop, again securing the ribbon with wire.  Once finished I cut the ribbon leaving a long tail to match the other side.  I generally prefer wire edged ribbon so it holds its shape better but it’s not essential.

how to make a simple bow

I use another piece of ribbon to finish the bow’s center.  Because wire edge ribbon can be bulky in tight spaces I cut the wire edges off.  From there I slightly scrunched the ribbon up for texture and tied a knot in the back.  You can trim the back ends of the knot if they show, or just leave them.  There you have it, a simple bow you can make in minutes, and I forgot to take a final photo… but you’ll see it below in a sec.

How to make a summer wreath

I love making my wreaths on the floor, I get a better visual than sitting at a table and I can also spread out all my stuff!  I bought hydrangea bushes because that’s what was on sale at my craft store and it was cheaper.  Using wire cutters snip the flower heads and leaves to a comfortable length.

How to make a summer wreath

There’s that bow finally!  I started by hot gluing my bow down leaving the ends unattached.  Then I glued the hydrangeas and the ends of the bow down.  I like my bow tails to have a fun flowy look, so I bended them and glued several small sections down.  This is another reason to use wire ribbon, to help shape the ribbon tails.  Lastly I finished the wreath by gluing in my leaves and roses.

DIY Summer Hydrangea and Rose Wreath

So easy!  Who really needs Pier One anyway??  I’m just kidding, I do… come back… come back to me please!  Wreaths can get a little expensive with all the floral and ribbon but I did buy most items on sale.  Here is a breakdown of the cost.

COST

18 inch wreath form $3.99  – from Wal-Mart

Ribbon $1.99 (on sale half price) – from Hobby Lobby

Hydrangea bushes (on sale half price) $5.99 x 3 bushes = $17.97 – from Hobby Lobby

Roses (on sale half price) $3.49 x 3 = $10.47 – from Hobby Lobby

Hot glue sticks & wire, free, because I had them on hand

Grand total = $34.42

How to make a budget floral wreath

I used a giant suction cup to hang my wreath on the glass, you can usually find them in the floral section of craft stores.  If your door is metal they also have magnetic hooks too.

Budget hydrangea wreath tutorial

There you have it, a quick and easy summery wreath!   I hope you feel inspired to make your own wreath like mine or your make own glorious creation.  I have another hydrangea and rose themed blog post planned for later this week.  I love these happy flowers everywhere!

EASY DIY FINGERPRINT WALL ART

EASY DIY FINGERPRINT WALL ART

Easy to make DIY fingerprint wall art

Happy Tuesday!  Today I’m excited to share my easy DIY fingerprint wall art with you!  Our media room is nearly complete and should be up on the blog within a few weeks.  Right now I’m focusing on decor items to finish the space, and one of those things is wall art!   Decorating your walls can get expensive quickly, so this time I was determined to stay on a budget.  All the time I see abstract art for sale thinking “Oh I can make that” but I usually forget to.  Not this time!

Recently I was browsing decor and I was instantly attracted to this art from Anthropologie, but when I saw the price I nearly choked!  Of course it’s much larger than I need for my space but I was very much motivated to make my own version.  If your memory is really good you might remember I had a similar print like this from Ballard, in our last house.  It was too small though and was damaged in our last move.

I’m much happier with this wall art, it has more personality and it cost just pennies to make!  I always have extra gallery frames on hand so that certainly kept the cost down.  I’m really fond of the ones from Pottery Barn and love the unique shaped mats, but recently I’ve discovered Target gallery frames and they’re just as great too.  So if you’re needing to freshen up your home with some fun art I’ll show you how quick and easy to make this fingerprint wall art.  It’s perfect for kids to make too!

Easy to make DIY fingerprint wall art

SUPPLIES NEEDED

Any size frame 

Poster board or card stock

Scissors

Black paint

Easy to make DIY fingerprint wall art

INSTRUCTIONS

Easy to make DIY fingerprint wall art

Cut the poster board or card stock down to the frame size.

Easy to make DIY fingerprint wall art

I’m using a mat and I didn’t want to paint the hidden areas so I placed the mat over the poster board and ran my fingernail along the edges so I could so exactly where the mat would be.  This is optional but I found it helpful.  Then I dipped my finger into basic black craft paint and painted dots on the poster board.  I know, super complicated right??

Easy to make DIY fingerprint wall art

Be sure to vary the sizes of the dots for some extra appeal.   Let the paint dry and then BOOM you have instant wall art!  If you’re wondering, the paint dried nicely on the poster board and didn’t create any rippling.  I have such a thing for black and white wall art, it makes my heart sing and looks amazing on our wood walls!

Easy to make DIY fingerprint wall art

I had all my supplies on hand except the poster board and that was under $1.  Canvas art would cost a little more but also look amazing, or maybe a fingerprint accent wall somewhere in your home?  Go get creative and have some fun!

Ok, you’ve had a little sneak peak at our media room… just a peak that’s all you get for now.  I can’t wait to share the rest of the room with you!

MAKE GORGEOUS, INEXPENSIVE NAPKIN RINGS FROM TWINE & GLUE

MAKE GORGEOUS, INEXPENSIVE NAPKIN RINGS FROM TWINE & GLUE

How to make napkin rings out of paper towel rolls, twine & glue

I love a beautifully set table, and nothing brings a table together like gorgeous napkin rings!  These napkin rings look like they were store bought, yet I made them out of items I had at home at very little cost.

Several months ago I had a light bulb moment and realized toilet paper and paper towel rolls were the same width as napkin rings.  So naturally I’ve been brainstorming clever ways to use them for making napkin rings.  I prefer using paper towel rolls but you can certainly use toilet paper rolls to make these rings…but you’ll need several.  I decided to use a paper towel roll because it fits more and feels less germy.

How to make napkin rings out of paper towel rolls, twine & glue

I used basic cooking twine, the ones I use to tie up my chicken, to make these napkin rings.  Cooking twine has a smooth texture which for this project I really liked.  You can also use jute twine or yarn and experiment with the different textures.  When it comes to the glue, the cheaper the better!  I used cheap basic washable glue from the Dollar Tree.

So just to prepare you, it takes a few days to make these (mostly because of dry time), but don’t let that put you off.  It’s a satisfying project and well worth it.  Below I’ll show you supplies needed and break down the steps to show you how easy it is to make these beautiful napkin rings!

DIY budget napkin rings

How to make napkin rings out of paper towel rolls, twine & glue

SUPPLIES NEEDED

Paper towel or toilet paper rolls

Twine or thin yarn

Scissors

Plastic wrap

Cheap, basic glue

Cornstarch

Water

Bowl

Whisk

Newspaper or drop cloth

Paint

DIY budget napkin rings

INSTRUCTIONS

How to make napkin rings out of paper towel rolls, twine & glue

1.  Wrap an empty paper towel roller with plastic wrap.

2.  Measure out the amount of twine you need.  I did this by wrapping the twine around the roller until I achieved the look I was going for.  Then I unwrapped and used this as a guide to cut the rest of the twine to length.  I used roughly 228 inches for each ring, you can use more or less.

3.  With the twine, go around the roller one time and tie a knot.

4.  Continue wrapping the twine in a single layer until you create the width of a typical napkin ring.  This first layer will act as a guide.

How to make napkin rings out of paper towel rolls, twine & glue

5.  Continue to wrap the twine around in a random pattern on top of the first layer and leave a small tail.

6.  Take the tail of the twine and loop it under another piece of twine.

7.  Then pull it tight to create a knot.  It’s best to make your new knot on the same side as the original knot.  Both knots will be the back of the napkin ring and hidden.

8.  Trim the knot ends shorter and tuck the little string edges under, pushing on the roller if necessary.

How to make napkin rings out of paper towel rolls, twine & glue

9.  Continue each step until you reach the desired number of napkin rings needed.  I was easily able to slide and adjust my wrapped twine bundles along the roller.  I was able to comfortably fit 6 rings per roller.

10.  Gather your supplies to make the glue mixture.  Grab a bowl, then mix 1/4 cup glue, 1/4 cup cornstarch, and 2 tablespoons water.

11.  Whisk together until smooth, then rinse the measuring utensils and the whisk.  You can use a disposable bowl, but don’t worry I had no problem washing the glue mixture out of my bowl.  I left it in the bowl 3 days (covered with plastic wrap) and it cleaned up just fine.

NOTE: My glue mixture was enough to make 8 napkin rings.  If you are making more than 8 you’ll need to double the mixture. 

12.  Over newspaper or a drop cloth scoop small amounts of the glue mixture with your fingers.  Then rub and press the glue mixture into each napkin ring.  You’ll also want to scrunch the edges of the napkin ring with your fingers to ensure the twine is even and feels tight.  Do this a few times letting the mixture penetrate the twine layers until it feels thoroughly wet, think of this as paper mache but with twine.  Repeat the step for each napkin ring.  You can wear a disposable glove but I just used my bare hands, that’s how I roll.  Cover the remaining glue in the bowl with plastic wrap, you’ll need it later!

How to make napkin rings out of paper towel rolls, twine & glue

13.  Place the roller upright to dry so it doesn’t stick to anything.

14.  After 2-3 hours check the rings and apply another light layer of the glue mixture to the rings.  Cover and save the remaining mixture.  Let the rings dry 12-24 hours until they have completely hardened.  Once completely dry remove the rings by twisting and sliding them off the roller.  You can even crush or cut the roller if necessary, but I didn’t need to.  If you see any jagged glue residue along the ring edges simply scrape it off with a pair of scissors.

15.  Now it’s time to glue the inside of the ring.  It looks firm and stable but the friction of a napkin sliding in and out will eventually pull out the string.  Dip a finger in the remaining glue mixture and rub it along the inside of the napkin ring.

16.  BE WARNED: if you don’t have enough glue on your finger it can drag and pull the inside of the twine loose.  I only had this happen on one ring, if this happens just get extra glue and pat the string down.  The trick is to keep a lot of glue on your finger, it your finger feels dry then stop and get more glue.  You could also trying using a small craft brush to apply the glue.  Once the inside of the napkin ring is coated in glue let it dry completely.  Once dry, the napkin rings should feel firm and sturdy.

How to make napkin rings our of toliet paper rolls

Now it’s time to paint!  I used gold spray paint because it’s what I had on hand, but you can use any color or type of paint you have.  I must say I certainly love the gold though!  I think in the future I’d love to make bronze and silver napkin rings as well.  Let the paint dry, and now you have gorgeous napkin rings!

Also, I chose to paint my napkin rings because I wanted them to be fancy!  However you can leave yours natural for a rustic look as well.  Definitely experiment and have fun!

Toliet paper napkin rings

I’m pretty picky about homemade gifts but I think these napkin rings would make a great gift, don’t you agree?

How to make napkin rings out of a toilet paper rolls, twine & glue

Time to set the table!  If you’re drooling over these plates you can find them HERE.  Leopard addiction is a real thing and I definitely have it!

How to make napkin rings out of a toilet paper rolls, twine & glue

I absolutely love these napkin rings, each one has it’s own unique look.  It was so much fun and you can bet I’ll be doing more DIY napkin rings as ideas come to me.

Think of all the beautiful color combinations you can come up with.  I want to see all your amazing creations!  If you make these tag me on Instagram or leave a photo under my Pinterest pin.  Go create my friends, it’s good for the soul!

10 WAYS TO EXTEND THE LIFE OF CUT ROSES

10 WAYS TO EXTEND THE LIFE OF CUT ROSES

How to extend the life of cut roses

It’s my birthday today so I thought I’d blog about one of my favorite things, roses!  I love all flowers but I’d have to say roses are probably my favorite.  They come in a variety of colors to suit your mood, look great alone or arranged with other flowers, and you can easily grab them at most grocery stores.  Nothing brightens my mood more than having roses in our home.

If you follow my blog regularly you know we’ve been going through a massive home remodel in our new Colorado home.  It’s been hard, things have been unorganized and dirty with construction dust everywhere.  Through all the chaos I’ve made sure to keep a vase of roses in a few rooms.  These beautiful flowers have kept me focused and happy through the mess… I call that rose therapy!

How to extend the life of cut roses

Let’s face it though, if you’re like me and love keeping fresh cut roses in your home it’s not cheap!  The cost certainly adds up, but I’ve learned lots of tricks through the years on how to extend the life of your roses.

Below I’ll give you my 10 favorite tips on how to keep these beauties fresh and lovely for as long as possible.

1. Keep the roses in water on the way home.  I know this is a hassle but keeping roses in water while driving home greatly extends the life, especially if you have a long drive home.  You can keep a small bucket with a little water in the bottom if you plan ahead.  You can also pour a little water in the flower wrapper bags which are available at most grocery stores.  Double or triple bag it, to avoid any leaks.

2. Proper cutting is essential.  Roses must always be trimmed before displaying them and sharp clean floral shears or scissors are essential.  Cut at a clean 45 degree angle to help with water absorption, and take care not to tear or crush the stem as this can promote bacteria.  Be sure to keep leaves out of out of the water line as this will also promote bacteria growth.

3. Trim rose stems in water.  When roses are cut and exposed to air a scab can form which prohibits water absorption.  A simple solution is to cut the stems in a bowl of water or under running water, then immediately transfer to a vase.  Repeat the process if needed to adjust the height of your roses.

4. Always use floral food.  When purchasing flowers make sure to use the little packet of powdered floral food.  I’m a huge fan of liquid flower food, I find it much quicker to mix and a bottle lasts a long time.

5. Keep the water clean.  Having clean water free of bacteria is crucial for prolonging the life of your roses.  Be sure to switch out the water every few days water and be sure that leaves of the stem and any falling petals are kept out of the water.

6. Display in a suitable location.  Keep your roses happy in a cool area and out of direct sun.  Keep away from fruit and houseplants because they emit ethylene gas which can cause your roses to wilt prematurely.

7. Stay hydrated.  Roses are very thirsty and need a lot of water to stay hydrated, you need monitor water levels daily.  Rose petals absorb water and can help hydrate your arrangement as well.  Mist a few times a day with a spray bottle to keep your roses fresh and happy.

8. Always use a clean container.  Bacteria is the kiss of death for your roses.  It’s crucial to properly wash and sterilize flower vases and containers.  Wash all containers with hot soapy water, add a splash of bleach, rinse well, and dry.

9. Remove bad roses immediately.  Keep an eye out for any rose that is prematurely wilting and pull it out, just one bad rose can spread bacteria and ruin the entire bunch.

10. Refrigeration slows the aging process.  Anytime you’ll be gone for an extended period of time use your refrigerator to extend the life of your roses. You can also do this overnight while sleeping, just remember not to put them near any fruits or vegetables!

How to extend the life of cut roses

I love the impact of a large rose arrangement, but a great budget tip is to create smaller bundles of 2 or 3 roses in smaller containers, and often I’ll just do a single rose bud.  I can stretch a dozen roses into several rooms this way and keep the cost down.  Some specialty grocery stores like Central Market will sell individual roses which is another budget saver.

I have a large collection of unique vases and containers for flower arranging.  I thought I’d share some of my very favorites below with you. I especially have a passion for Rosenthal mini vases.  They hold 2-3 flowers and add dramatic style!

Try these tips and you’ll be amazed how much longer your roses will last!

HOW TO MAKE A FESTIVE TASSEL GARLAND

HOW TO MAKE A FESTIVE TASSEL GARLAND

How to make tassel garland with yarn and straws.

I’m back today with more birthday fun to share!  Right after Valentine’s Day we start gearing up for Ashley’s birthday… she loves it when I find cute ways to decorate for her birthday.  I love making garland for our fireplace mantel, and I’m going to show you how I made this fun festive garland out of just yarn and straws!  You can play around with colors and variations to make this fun garland work for any occasion.

I found making these tassels to be really fun, there are some tutorials using objects such as books, but I found sliding the yarn off to be difficult, and it made my tassels longer than I wanted.  I began looking around the house for other objects to use while wrapping the yarn and… we ended up with a toilet paper roller!  I mean 3 girls live in this house… there is always an empty toilet paper roller hanging around.

How to make tassel garland with yarn and straws.

SUPPLIES NEEDED

Yarn

Scissors

Decorative straws

A flattened toilet paper roller

How to make yarn tassel garland.

You can find decorative cardboard straws at craft stores, party stores, at some grocery stores, and online of course!  You can find a variety of patterns and colors.  Not only are they perfect for this garland but so cute for parties and entertaining.

How to make yarn tassel garland.

Start by wrapping the yarn around the flattened toilet paper roller.  I wrapped all mine around 30 times, then cut the yarn.  You could wrap them even more if you would like fuller tassels.

Now cut 2 more strips of yarn to finish the tassels.  Take a strip of yarn, thread it under the yarn at the top of the roller, and tie in a knot.  Then simply slide it off the roller.  The flexibility of the cardboard makes this much easier.

How to make yarn tassel garland.

You’ll be left with a large loop, simply cut down the center.  At this point if any ends look off center you can pull one side gently to adjust.  The yarn strings that we used to tie off you can keep separate so you can tie your tassels on to the object of your choice or tuck the strings in if you’re attaching the tassels a different way.

That’s confusing… I’ll show you below what I mean.  But first let’s finish the tassel.  Tie another cut strip of yarn around the tassel to finish it.  You’ll want the yarn strip long enough that it will blend in with the other yarn pieces.  Once tied in a knot cut the strings if they’re too long.

How to make yarn tassel garland.

Now for that confusing part, see in the bottom left photo, for the right tassel I left my original knotted ends out so I could tie it onto my garland or any object.  For the left one I tucked the strings down with the other strings.  The reason I started doing this is because I noticed I could just slide the straws through the center to attach to the garland, and this created a cleaner look.  You can absolutely tie it on though, it’s just a preference.

You can cut the straws to any size, I cut mine in half.  I was worried that cutting the straws would crush them because they were cardboard, but that wasn’t an issue.  Regular scissors should work just fine.

How to make yarn tassel garland.

Take your yarn, measure, and cut to the length that you would like your garland to be.  Remember to leave enough yarn so your garland can be attached.

Above I’m showing all 3 examples.  You can tie the tassel ends onto the garland in a knot, or a bow.  If the knot is tight and secure you can also cut it off at the top, like I did in the center.  The last tassel I slid through the top tassel center.  For this project I did a mix of cut and tied with ends tucked down.  For this specific project I like the tucked in look, but it just depends on what you’re doing really.

How to make yarn tassel garland.

Keep tying or threading the tassels and straws through the yarn.  I ended with a tassel so I could create a knot with the last tassel.   This garland is so light weight it can be taped up, or you can tie a loop at the end for a hook or nail.

How to make a yarn tassels for a present.

I tied 3 tassels together to make a festive birthday bow!

How to make yarn tassel garland.

I think different colors and straw patterns would be adorable to make, I especially think a patriotic or Halloween colored one would be really fun.  You could even leave out the straws and just tie a bunch of yarn tassels together to create a fun garland look.

I had a lot of fun making this garland, you can always make longer tassels by cutting a paper towel roller and experiment with using ribbons.  These tassels are just so great to play around with and they’re a very forgiving craft… hahaha!  Sometimes I botch my crafts.  See you soon!