Friday, December 14, 2012

Bright, Colorful, Playroom Christmas Tree and Neutral Dining Room

The upstairs of my house stays very traditional in its Christmas colors. But, the playroom goes wild!  Why not!  I was actually too lazy to put this tree up last year but it was the first one up (of the 5) this year.  I had every single thing on this tree already so not having to spend any money made it much more fun.

The only new thing added to the tree is the little bunting.  I made it from scraps of leftover stockings. I used the same method as I did for Harper's Birthday Bunting for cutting the triangles and just sewed them onto a pink ribbon.  Easy and adorable!

The tree skirt is just a 2 year peice of chevron fabric that will soon be turned into pillows for the playroom.  I'm already over some of the fabric in here.  I've got problems people, problems!

Dining Room
The dining room tree is very similar to last year. Dried hydrangeas (click here for a how to on drying your own), vintage lace, crystals from a old chandelier and a ruffled tree skirt made from inexpensive muslin. It fits perfectly in this corner and I love it in the new dining room!

All is all I didn't buy a single new Christmas item this year other than loads of fresh garland and wreaths. 
 My Kindergartner had his last day of school yesterday so we are off to find a Gingerbread cookie recipe (that doesn't make 5 dozen cookies!!!) and have Mommy/Gray Day (to put it into his words).  Excited to hang with my boy and even more excited that he is so pumped to hang with me!

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Christmas Mantle

The mantle this year is only slightly different than last year.  More pared down I would say.   I went with real greenery and added a string of lights.  I bought 75 feet of garland (SERIOUSLY!!  I measured because I didn't believe them!) for only $55.  I thought that was a good deal and I really do like it a whole lot better. 

I actually truly hate these stockings. I've had them for years and after I finished up making stockings for the Woven Home Store I just haven't had the time (or made the time) to make some for myself.

I moved around all my string trees and pulled some antlers in along with some glittery apples, pears, and reindeer.  

So... this mantle is bound to change in the near future and I'll probably not do an update post on it... but I am planning a stocking tutorial soon so you can see how I made these babies!  I tried to spend zero dollars on new Christmas decor this year.  But, my imaginary mantle has neutral stockings, big lanterns full of candles and vintage mercury glass ornaments, and maybe some of those super awesome driftwood trees I've seen around this year... there is always next year :-)

I am glad I spent some extra time wrapping this year.  Am I the only one who hates to wrap?!?  I can shop all day but then I'm done.  I bought plain red and brown wrapping paper from Ikea, used some leftover Target paper from last year and added ribbon I already had on hand.  Made a world of difference and it's a step in the right direction!


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Friday, December 7, 2012

How To Take Glowing Christmas Tree Pictures

Can I just say I'm still lost with my new DSLR Camera.  Even though it's not new anymore!  It's almost exactly a year old and we are still barely on speaking terms!  With that out of the way... I conquered something on my Pinterest to do list involving my camera last night. 

I had pinned this image from Unskinny Boppy last year (who hasn't pinned this?!?).  When going through my Christmas boards this year I decided I had to give this a try!  And, her tutorial really makes it a no brainer. 

The jist is you turn all your lights off except the tree and including your flash, turn your ISO up as high as it will go (I did 6400), turn your shutter speed down, and use a tripod or something to steady it on.  I'm going to make you click over to Beth's blog for the real in depth details (cause it's the right thing to do!).  There she will tell you specifics and you should check out some of her other great posts while your there! 

But, before you go.... here are some outtakes for your enjoyment...

{Note to self... Christmas trees are much  more cooperative than kids... }

Classy Clutter
good one

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Dining Room Revamp Reveal!


It's done!  Finally!  We officially win two awards for this project:  1.  Fastest Start and 2. Slowest Finish. 
Let's look at a big before shot and break down the changes. 

Problems and Solutions....
1. Need window treatments.
These were custom white linen hand me down curtains (thank you Mother-In-Law!!) but were a little too short.  A band of Raymond Waites for Mill Creek in Felton Coral was the perfect solution for a punch of color and to add length. Super easy sewing project!  (Let me know if you would like a tutorial on this!)
2. Chairs were insignificant.
So, I actually really loved (and kind of miss) my simple farmhouse chairs.  But the new chairs are much more suited for this big room.  The chairs at the heads of the table were $25 each from Habitat and were recovered in drop cloth and piped in chocolate brown linen.  The other chair seats were recovered also.  Four in a Waverly over scaled floral (can't remember the exact print!)  and the other two in Raymond Waites for Mill Creek in Felton Coral.  Both of these are indoor/outdoor fabrics and stain resistant.  Essential for the kids!
3. Wall color too yellow.
It's not a giant difference.  But, this whole house was painted in a flat yellow tinged cream and we are slowing but surely getting rid of it.  It was a custom mixed color but I have the formula and you can email me if you want it.
4. Furniture on back wall WAY too small.
You can tell in the before picture above.  Tiny console table with an enormous picture over it and ity bity lamps. It was just all sorts of wrong.  But now I LOVE it.  I am most proud that all the big stuff here came from the Goodwill and was revamped!  You can see the buffet story here and more on the pictures later this week but they are stamped original botanical prints for $35 each at Goodwill! The mirror I had and painted it white from red.  And the lamp, which mimic the light fixture, were a Tuesday Morning find. Even the little pillows are from a little piece of hand done crewel (by the sweetest old woman) I picked up at a yard sale and turned into pillows. Obviously she had amazing taste.  She said she did this piece 20 or 30 years ago!
5. Layout needs tweaked for better flow.
By switching the china cabinet and wine bar it made it much easier to walk through to the kitchen.  Small change, big impact.
6.  Needed a happier, brighter color scheme.

 When you walk into the house you first see the new entry bench and then look into this room straight ahead and to the right. You can see this room from almost everywhere on the main level so it needed brightened up. 
The cost break down is pretty unreal.
I spent about $40 on fabric (discount remnants), $40 on the Goodwill dresser turned buffet, $70 on the art, $200 on the sea grass rug (Overstock), $50 on paint, and $90 on the two lamps.  Put it all together with a little elbow grease, a few hand me downs (chairs and curtains) and you get a whole room revamp for only about $500!  Not too shabby I would say.  Especially when you space it out over a year :-)
 It may have taken a year to get it where I wanted up but I love the results.  The pops of pink and green make me smile without being overly girly and I couldn't be happier to mark this one off the list!

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