Fall Decorating: Four Ways to Bring Nature Into Your Home

Fall Decorating: Four Ways to Bring Nature Into Your Home

photo source: grongar on flickr

photo credit: grongar on flickr

Friends, meet Lauren. She’s our featured guest blogger who has some really great ideas about decor in your home that comes from outside. I mean, seriously, how easy is that? Dear high end home decor stores: Thank you for your beautiful displays but I can actually get what you’re selling by walking about 5 steps from my front porch. You with me, here?

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Fall is the time of year when nature is abundant outdoors. But as the weather gets cooler, you may decide to bring some of the outside in by incorporating nature into your décor in the form of centerpieces and earthy artwork. Here are four ways to bring a little bit of nature into your home this fall and winter.

1. A Centerpiece

Autumn Centerpiece

Photo credit: Eden Pictures

A centerpiece display is a great way to add a focal point to a room, whether you decide to place it on the fireplace or the dining table.

Fall is full of color and beauty, so your centerpiece should contain a mixture of the season’s most beautiful elements.

Choose a bowl where you can add your favorite pieces of fall. Rustic, earthy colored bowls work well at this time of year, but a see-through bowl is equally as appealing as you will be able to view the contents easily. Then, all you need to do is head out into the great outdoors and start foraging. Look for interesting shaped leaves in stunning colors, earthy twigs, pine cones, conkers and wind fallen fruit such as apples and pears. Arrange your findings into an eye-catching display in the bowl, and then display it proudly for all to see.

You could even scatter jewel-colored leaves down the centre of your table like a runner, and place tealight candles (in holders) in the gaps in between the leaves* for a casual, romantic look.

2. A Wreath

Autumn Wreath

Photo credit: theogeo on Flickr

An attractive, handmade wreath to attach to your door is a fantastic way to make the most of bounty of fall. There’s no reason why wreaths should be reserved just for Christmas.

Making a wreath is incredibly easy. Once you have the basic framework you can make your final design as elaborate or subtle as you like!

Head out toward a woodsy area and gather a good amount of twigs. Choose ones that bend easily without snapping. Avoid any with sharp spikes or thorns. Start with one twig and intertwine it around another. Repeat with each twig, until you create a circular shape. Keep going until your wreath has some bulk and depth to it, and when it feels secure. The hedgerows and trees in autumn are brimming with berries, so add a few berries to the wreath to give it a warming color. Pine cones look amazing nestled within a wreath and don’t forget that ribbons and bows can all be added too!

3. Artwork

Autumn leaf color

Photo credit: Tomoaki INABA on flickr

One of Mother Nature’s most splendid treasures has to be fall leaves; the colors are just beautiful. Enjoy autumn leaves inside the home by making your own artwork.

Go hunting for your favorite leaves seeking out maple reds, vibrant yellows and dazzling golds. Press the leaves in the page of a book until they are flat. Next, take a picture frame and carefully glue the leaves onto a white backing, to be mounted inside the frame (similar to THIS). You can hang the leaf pictures in any room of the home, to remind you of this beautiful time of year. As well as using leaves, seek out unusual flowers and seed heads to add to your picture.

4. Fall Bunting

Autumn Leaf collage

Photo credit: Forest Wander flickr

Fall is a time of celebration. It’s the time of year we are grateful for the gains of the harvest, as well as a time to reflect on the joys of nature that come with the changing seasons.

Celebrate this time of year by creating your own bunting, which you can drape across the ceiling or hang down from a lamp or door (like THIS). Get a long piece of string and carefully attach leaves to the string at intervals, by either threading the leaves through or stapling them to the string. If you’re using bunting bought from a store, then attach leaves to the triangular shapes on either side, by using glue or staples. Hang up, and enjoy!

Lauren is the in-house blogger for www.ashbrookroofing.co.uk. Her favourite season is autumn and she starts preparing for bonfire night in the UK well in advance of the actual day (her Guy Fawkes parties are notorious in her home town!) When she’s not busy imparting roofing knowledge she enjoys running, cooking and reading a good book. 

A Quick and Cheap Halloween Table. No Skills Required.

A Quick and Cheap Halloween Table. No Skills Required.

It’s time for Halloween which means it’s time to break out the spooky decor.

I’ve been searching Pinterest and, to be honest, I’m overwhelmed. I’d love to have a mantle dripping with webs, candles that match, a dirty-looking skull and a vintage photo that makes you question whether or not you’re being watched. Doesn’t that sound awesome?

Yeah, I think so, too.

When it comes to decor or DIY, I have little patience. I like to try a little bit of everything but I’ve learned that the projects I choose need to take a day at the very most. I don’t like things that drag on and on.

BUT…

I HAVE to have a decorated table, silly.

Halloween table decor | organized chaos online | DIY

With a goal of spending less than $20, I happened upon some decor. Yes, $20.00. Hey, being on a budget is no joke. Yaknow?

The Target beacon was calling my name (duh, doesn’t it always?). In the deals section – or whatever that heaven sent area is right when you walk in the door – there were bins of sparkly pumpkins. Cost $1 each. You can’t afford not to. I got six of them. Then, back to the seasonal section. I wanted about 500,000 things that would make my home look like a freaking haunted house. However, that $20.00 limit kept nagging at me.

Let’s set the record straight. I am not in favor of having a budget. Like, ever. I’ve never NOT been on a budget. Can you imagine just going out and getting what you want, where you want and when you want it? Wait…do I hear angels singing? I can (and do) imagine it every single day.

Leaving dream world. Heading on into reality. Back to the decor.

In the non-eye level areas of Target’s seasonal section (i.e. the stuff that is less expensive and not the store’s sales focus), I found a plastic/vinyl skull tablecloth for around $3 and this cheesecloth for around $4. I put those festive bargains in my cart along with the pumpkins and talked myself out of every other thing I saw from the back of the store to checkout.

Pumpkins and table covers weren’t going to do the trick. I needed to add more.

REPURPOSE

I went home and rounded up what I already had. This is a tough thing to do when it’s your house because you stop taking note of things that have been in their place for a long time. It’s sometimes difficult to “see” items re-purposed around your house.

striped sharpie plate | organized chaos online

Last Christmas, I went a bit sharpie crazy decorating any type of ceramic possible. This would be a perfect addition to my no effort table display. (Instructions on how to decorate ceramic with a Sharpie at the end of this post). The plate was from the dollar store so it was…you guessed it…one dollar. I ended up adding a $4.00 candle from Michael’s that I’d just picked up a few days before (again…can’t afford not to) and I was set.

DECOR PLACEMENT

To do this right, you have to think long and hard about what you want your end result to be and how you plan to project the colors vs. shapes – just kidding. My way was methodical, though. I tossed the table cover on, added the cheesecloth, arranged the pumpkins, placed the plate and lit the candle in a glass cylinder. After my hard work and approximately 2 minutes of my time. Add in about a tenth of a second for creativity and I had a completed Halloween-themed table with a very simple look. In the meantime, I’m waiting for a phone call from Martha Stewart or, really, any home decor company for the incredible effort I put out on this project. Just think: You can put out just as much.

SUPPLIES & COST

Skull Table Cover: $3.00

Cheesecloth: $4.00

Sparkly Pumpkins: $6.00 (six at one dollar each)

Plate: $1.00

Candle: $4.00

TOTAL COST: $18.00

Every time I walk past the table, it makes me happy. The look is just right for the area we have, it doesn’t interfere with my son’s airplanes and trains that seem to end up “hiding” in the cheesecloth and it’s simple to put back in place when company is on their way and  I’m rushing through my house cleaning up as if it looks like that all the time.

 

What is your quick Halloween decor solution?

Comment below the ‘Related Posts’ pictures.

We’d love to get some great ideas and possibly share in an upcoming post. You all have such great ideas!

tawsha connell

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Sharpie on ceramic: Run yourself to the dollar store and purchase any type of ceramic dish or cup. Be sure the surface you’re going to write on is flat. When using a Sharpie on these dishes, you’ll need an oil-based Sharpie. Michael’s always has a ton of them but you can find the pens pretty much anywhere a regular Sharpie is sold. Heat your oven to the recommended 350 degrees. However, DIYopolis says to turn the oven to 425 degrees. I think she’s on to something. Heat the dish (mug, plate, etc) for 30 minutes. Once your time is up, turn off the oven and let your newly decorated piece cool. Once cool to the touch, take your  mug out and test the results. Wipe it. Did the Sharpie stay? If yes, run it through the dishwasher for a final test. Did it rub off? Three thoughts: 1. Your mug may have a thick glaze which takes much longer for the Sharpie to ‘bake into’ or adhere to the ceramic piece. 2. You may not be using an oil-based Sharpie. 3. You may have to bake the piece of art longer. Note: White ceramic can cook, too. Think of a marshmallow over the heat of a fire. Yep, there’s a chance you’ll brown it.

How to Host a Pinterest Party – Step by Step

How to Host a Pinterest Party – Step by Step

How to host a pinterest party | organized chaos online

I’m going on my second year of hosting a Pinterest party. I’d been thinking it would be a cool idea to get friends together and craft something up but I could never decide what project to do and who to invited to do that project because all my friends are so different.

Every year as the holidays approach, I’m reminded of my mom telling me about when she was little, her mom hosted a get together called BPFC. The meaning: Be Prepared For Christmas. The ladies would get together and sew their little hearts out in the months leading up to Christmas.

My Nana was a visionary! I wanted to do this.

At that point, the Pinterest party was born.

There are truly no rules to hosting a Pinterest party. You can just come up with a concept in your head and carry it out in a way that works best for your life.

Since “Just wing it” isn’t a sufficient ‘How-To’, I’ll break down how we host our parties.

pinterest party planning

CONCEPT: When planning my Pinterest party, I knew we would get together and work on projects for Christmas. It could be a gift or decor. Everyone coming to the party, chooses a project from Pinterest they would like to do (in the amount of time they will be at your house) and brings enough for everyone to try it.The instructions are typically to state how many people you expect at the party so each person knows how many people to supply with their chosen project. It sounds pricey but it’s actually not. You can choose yours according to the budget you’re working with. Having everyone choose their own project helps with the conundrum of coming up with something everyone would like to do. TIP: Keep your guest count manageable. 10 guests are plenty. For your party, you can choose whatever focus or theme you’d like.

chili bar by marigold mom

Chili bar by Marigold Mom
click image for more great (and affordable) party ideas

FOOD & DRINK: As the host, it is up to me to plan food and drinks for my guests. This time around, one of my guests actually wanted to cook for the party. Who am I to turn down that offer? We had chili. A creative and very do-able idea is a chili bar. It’s very cost effective. Add some cornbread to the sides and you have a nice meal. In keeping with the “bar” theme, tacos and salads work just as well. As far as the drinks go, you can be as plain or as fancy as you’d like. Hop onto Pinterest and search for party drinks or just keep it simple and put out bottled water, alcoholic and non alcoholic drinks. (party drinks HERE). TIP: Keep the food and drinks away from the craft area.

craft storage

craft storage option from the Container Store

 

PREP: Even though your guests will each  be bringing a project for everyone including the supplies, it’s likely someone will forget something or not realize they needed glue, ribbon, mod podge, etc, until the last minute. Beef up your craft supplies before they arrive. A list of things that are always good to have on hand are:

  • Glue Dots
  • Scissors
  • Glue Stick
  • Paintbrushes
  • Cardstock paper
  • Xacto knife
  • Pencils and Pens

wood table setup

CRAFT AREA: All your guests will have questions for one another, will want to see what the other is doing and will be chatting it up like crazy. It’s a super-fun night so be sure you have an area where everyone can sit down close to each other. You can set your Pinterest party up at an extended kitchen table or even a folding table with a festive cover.

entryway clock

TIME: As fun as it is crafting it up with a bunch of great girlfriends, the length of time is important. This goes for both you and your guests. Of course they can stay longer but 3-4 hours is plenty of time for what you want to do.

did this on pinterest

ADDITIONAL TIPS:

  • NO KIDS: Unless your children are involved in the project or being watched by someone not participating in the party, it’s not advised to have children present. Why? They will want to do what you’re doing, be in the mix and distract you from being engaged in your project with friends. Plus, there’s a safety element that plays into it if you’re using scissors and knives.
  • NO BYSTANDERS: While it’s awesome to sit and visit with a friend, someone just dropping by to chat it up isn’t a part of the group’s activity and, just like children, will take your focus off what you’re doing.
  • NO IN-DEPTH PROJECTS: Keep it quick. If the craft can’t be completed in the time of the party, save it for something you do at home. A Pinterest party is self-contained. This means, whatever materials are brought into your party are the same materials that are carried out of your party. No overnight drying, coming back for phase two of the cutting, etc. Also, encourage your guests to bring a new project they haven’t tried before. I went to one party where a lady just brought some stuff she’d been working on and thought this was a good time to continue with it. The problem was that she just came to do her own thing while the rest of us were introduced to new ideas, suggestions, successes and fails.
  • BE VERY SPECIFIC: Are you asking that your guests bring guests? If not, state that in the invitation by letting them know you’re keeping it to a set amount. Your guests should be informed of every event detail so they can properly plan for the festivities.
  • HAVE FUN. This isn’t Martha Stewart. It’s so fun being around people who are trying these projects for the first time. Some of your friends will be those natural crafters who can make anything look good. Other friends are total Pinterest fails every time they try. It’s awesome. Truly.

Oh, yes. This Pinterest stuff is serious business!

Have you seen our boards? We can be found HERE. What’s your Pinterest account? Comment below so we can see inside your minds and follow your boards.

tawsha connell

DIY Painted Rug

DIY Painted Rug

I’ll admit that I’ve been lazy. Well, maybe more nervous. Lazy nervous?

I bought the Erslev rug from IKEA because I saw that someone had painted a cool design on theirs. It was $40 and my thought was that the possibilities were endless. I’m not totally into home decor because I am also afraid of color (we should talk about fear in a future blog) but I’m challenging myself to live outside the box and take a chance with decor. Here’s the rug.

erslev-rug-flatwoven-white__0102799_PE248404_S4Here’s where my inspiration came from.

Source: Hayley Photography (click for her tutorial)

Source: Hayley Photography
(click for her tutorial)

I mean, sure, it’s not anything crazy-looking but the idea of taking a white rug and painting it semi blew my mind. I’m not looking to create a chevron design but I do want to try something. Dare I say that I want to have a pretty fancy geometric design in navy or even red?

The rug will go under my table.

Screeeeeeeech. White rug under the same table where my son adds ketchup to EVERYTHING? Ummm…new plan.

I may have to go with red.

After 7 months, the freaking rug is still rolled into a tidy plastic wrap in the coat closet. I NEED to do something with it.

I went looking for more inspiration.

Side note: Almost everyone has tried the chevron design.

Knowing that some of you might be interested in figuring out how to SIMPLY create a pop of color or design to our homes, I went looking for EASY tutorials and, as a result, found some pretty rad bloggers. They are really creative (and some have a great sense of humor).

DIY-painted-rug-main-image

To start things off, here’s what you’ll need:

  1. A gallon of indoor flat paint
  2. Liquitex (one bottle per pint-ish)
  3. Flat woven rug. (I can’t find the IKEA Erslev rug anymore but you can use the Egeby and paint it like others have or just find any flat woven rug)
  4. Paint roller
  5. Drop cloth or plastic for under the rug (just in case)
  6. Frog Tape or green masking tape by Scotch or 3M

Now that you have all your supplies, you’ll need to decide on a design. Is it a knock-off of another design you’ve seen or is it something unique?

I found this chevron rug and it looked different than most. More “soft”. I read the blog and she actually sanded it after she painted it. Yep, I like her style. She didn’t want it to appear too perfect. Click the image to see how The House of Smiths did it.

Source: The House of Smiths (click for tutorial)

Source: The House of Smiths
(click for tutorial)

I’m not interested in a chevron design and I like darker colors (refer to ketchup comment above), I went searching for a more unique design with using dark colors. I started reading the tutorial for the rug in the image below and I immediately wanted to be her friend. She’s funny and has sass. Click the image for the darker rug tutorial by The Little Black Door.

Source: The Little Black Door (click for tutorial)

Source: The Little Black Door
(click for tutorial)

The Jonathan Adler design? The amazing painting award goes to Almost 40 Year Old Intern who created the Adler-inspired red/pink rug below. It’s near perfect.

Source: Almost 40 year old intern (click for tutorial)

Source: Almost 40 year old intern
(click for tutorial)

Finally, I’ve found my design. Black and white stripes. I love it, have always loved it and will probably always love it. It feels classy without being stuffy. Two Thirty Five Designs did a simple look on a not white rug. They made it look fabulous.

Source: Two Thirty Five Designs  (click for tutorial)

Source: Two Thirty Five Designs
(click for tutorial)

Bottom line: You can do it.

Grab your paint color, unroll that tape to create a design you like, roll a few coats of paint on the rug and let it dry. Throw your new rug in a space you want to show off and BOOM, you’ve got decor.

It’s that easy, right? I’ll post my rug when I’m finished.

Have you ever done this?

tawsha connell

DIY “Tumbling Blocks” Wall Art

DIY “Tumbling Blocks” Wall Art

DIY "Tumbling Blocks" Wall Art {OrganizedCHAOSOnline}

I’ve always been a fairly crafty person…sewing, crocheting, stamping, etc. etc. A few years ago, it seemed that everybody I worked with was into quilting. So, I decided this would be my next passion. I now have a pile of unfinished quilts. I sadly had to admit that quilting wasn’t my thing. Because I lean heavily toward ADD, I need to have projects that I can do quickly, and quilting just isn’t one of those crafts. The OCD in me though is intrigued by the symmetry of quilting patterns.

If you don’t have OCD tendancies, this may sound insane to you, but seeing these blocks all lined up makes me feel tidy and calm…similar to the feeling you get when you finish cleaning your kitchen. Your welcome for the glimpse inside the mind of an OCD person. So anyway…

block-8

This pattern, “Tumbling Blocks” is my all time favorite. I love that when you look at it long enough, you get different perspectives of the boxes. Try it. Stare at the boxes thinking of the patterned piece as the top of the box. Now look at it as the pattern being the bottom of the boxes. Jumps right out at you, doesn’t it? Love it!

block-7

After attempting several quilts and not being able to stick with the project long enough, it occurred to me to simplify things by recreating the pattern using scrapbook paper glued on canvas.This project is so easy and so versatile. You can use any combination of patterns, colors, etc., but the combination that I’ve found gives the blocks the most depth is using one piece that has a pattern, one piece with a dark color, and the last piece a lighter color.

To create this wall art, all you need are these few supplies:

  • Scrapbook paper
  • Scissors
  • Mod-Podge
  • Canvas (any size)

You can get all of these at any craft store, or you can order the supplies from Amazon HERE

Directions:

  1. Download the block templates below and print on card stock.
  2. Cut out the three template pieces.
  3. Using the scrapbook paper you’ve chosen, decide the pattern for your blocks.
  4. Using the #1 template, cut pieces from the paper you’ve decided on for the left side of the block.
  5. Using the #2 template, cut pieces from the paper you’ve decided on for the right side of the block.
  6. Using the #3 template, cut pieces from the paper you’ve decided on for the top of the block.
  7. Start anywhere you’d like on your canvas, and just start gluing the pieces on, in the block pattern (see template below for the pattern).

That’s it! You can stop the blocks anywhere you want (I wanted the contrast of the white canvas to show in some places because I like the way it defines the boxes)…or you can fill up your whole canvas. You can taper the “Pile” of boxes from high to low and end with a single block.

organizedCHAOSonline - tumbling blocks template[paiddownloads id=”38″]

I’m obsessed with this. I’ve also thought it might look really cool to cut the pieces out of images. Would it give the blocks the same depth? Or what about just white pieces outlined in black? Hmmm…

We’d love to see what you came up with. Send us pictures at organized CHAOS online!

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