Easy Easter Flower Arrangements

It’s almost time to break out the Reece’s peanut butter eggsJelly Belly Beans and Peeps! That’s right. Easter is a just a hop, skip, and a jump away. Ever wonder how some of the traditions, like dyed eggs and the Easter Bunny, started? This interesting article from Real Simple helps shed light on some of the folklore, such as the term Easter itself. Some claim the word derives from Eostre, a goddess of spring and fertility. I never knew that.

Okay, so other than treating myself to a bit of extra candy this time of year, I enjoy decorating the house with spring flowers. And when I say enjoy, I really mean L.O.V.E. Not many things brighten my day like a bundle of fresh, spring flowers from the garden – other than my sweet family and fuzzy bunnies.

Here are a few simple, yet beautiful arrangements to try on your Easter table this year.

Eggs Three Ways 

Easter arrangement with egg planters

I made this grouping of planters out of hollowed out egg shells and other items I found around the house. Keep reading to see how I pulled it together.

{1} Egg Cups

Check this out, I bought a set of egg cups at a flea market several years ago and have always found interesting ways to use them – outside of holding poached eggs, which I have never made. Here’s one of my faves: make egg planters.

Egg cups

Hollow out an egg (just crack the egg on the pointy end, drain the egg through the small hole at the top, and scramble for breakfast), let the egg shell dry, then fill it with soil and add your plant. Now it’s a mini flower pot! It might sound a bit fussy, but it really isn’t. Pinkie promise. And it will look so cute on your table.

{2} Nest Egg

For idea number two, display an egg planter on something unique that you have around the house.

Nest egg Easter flower arrangement

This adorable nest is actually a candle holder my SIL gave me one year. I filled it with a piece of moss and nestled my egg planter inside.

Tip: Look around your house for inspiration and get creative with how you display things!

{3} Egg on a Pedestal

Egg planter on a candlestick

I spray painted a clear candlestick holder from Dollar Tree with white gloss paint to give it a cohesive look with my egg cups. Then I used the holder as a makeshift egg cup! It adds height to my overall grouping. I actually used all three of the ideas I just shared on my table this year. I created multiple groupings and arranged them down the center of the table on a burlap runner.

{Bonus} Egg Cup Vases

I couldn’t help myself. I had to give you at least one more idea for jazzing up your egg cups. It’s not that often we get these things out of our cabinets.

Fill a hollowed out egg with water and tuck in a few dainty blossoms like lily of the valley, lilacs, and violas. Several of these would be gorgeous lining the center of your table. You could add a few tealight candles and sprinkle some jelly beans between each of the vases to give it an added Easter touch.

Moving on to other fun types of planters and arrangements…

Moss Pot and Pansies

I love the look of moss. It adds such a woodsy feel to any pot of flowers. This one uses a combination of ferns, English ivy, pansies, and violas. I’m actually going to be making a moss-covered pot later this week, so check back for the DIY instructions.

Rustic Hydrangeas

Isn’t this charming? For this rustic look, cut 30 to 40 twigs to the height of a glass vase. Hot-glue them to its surface and finish with some twine tied in a bow. The flowers featured are Queen Ann’s lace and white hydrangea blossoms. This would be gorgeous as a centerpiece or on an entryway table.

Daffodil Delight

This is probably the easiest way to Easter-up your table. Snip several bunches of daffodils from your yard – or the yard of your very kind neighbor who who will let you have some in exchange for Peeps. Arrange several vases in the center of your table. Egg cups work, too! Be sure the vases are varying heights, but all the same color so the look is more of a “collection.” Then fill each vase with as many daffs as you can stuff in there. Remember not to mix them with other flowers.

Carrots and Daisies

Why, yes. This arrangement just screams Easter – in a lovely kind of way. Find yourself some big, juicy carrots with their tops still on and stand them upright in a vase with a bit of water. Add a fresh bunch of Shasta daisies (mums would work, too) for an instant arrangement. I totally love this. I could wash the carrots and feed them to Rosie the rabbit after Easter!

I hope some of these ideas inspired you to try some fresh flowers on your Easter table this year. Let me know which one you like best or if you have another favorite bouquet to share. I’d love to see it.

As always, wishing you the best day, yet!

-Kate

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DIY Candlestick Projects (That Organize Your Space)

If you want a stylish way to organize some small spaces in your home, here are five solid projects to consider.

{ONE} Your sink

Gather your hand soap, dish soap, counter spray, and other sink stuff in one easy place. By elevating a tray or dish on a candlestick, it’s easy to reach your things – and they stay out of the wet zone. #winning

{TWO} Your photos

This is one of the most creative and inexpensive ways to gather and arrange your favorite photos. Take an inexpensive candlestick, wine cork and paper clip and voilà, you have a beautiful photo holder. And who doesn’t love a project that requires a cork or two? Cheers!

{THREE} Your coffee and tea

In most kitchens, counter space is highly valued property. By elevating a few items, like sweeteners and k-cups, you create more space along with a beautiful display.

{FOUR} Your jewelry

This organization project includes a variety of glassware, such as cups and vases. I’m thinking you could add candlesticks to this list and use it to stack and store your bracelets.

Tip: Cover your glass items with white gloss spray paint to give it the look of milk glass.

{FIVE} Your bathroom essentials

This project combines mason jars with candlesticks to make lovely apothecary jars for your bathroom. The key is to use varying heights of candlesticks to create a nice grouping. You could easily take inexpensive glass candlesticks and spray them with metallic spray paint.

I think I’m going to try the photo project later today. I’ll be sure to take pictures and let you know how it goes. We’ll see if it makes it on my “Friday Faves” list tomorrow. Here’s hoping!

Which of these projects sounds like something you’ll try? Be sure to take pics and tag me (@Katejandersen) on Instagram so I can see your great work.

-Kate

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A Simple Gallery Wall

Gallery Wall Full ShotHey, friends. Here’s a project that’s been on my wish list for quite some time, and I finally got to it this past week. (happiness!) I thought it would be fun to show and tell you about a few tips I learned along the way.

Now, I think the reason it took me so long to get to this is because it seemed like such a huge deal – requiring holes in walls. I promise, organizing and arranging all of your favorite pictures on a wall is much easier than it looks.

Here’s how it went down…

{1st} Frames

flea market picture framesI decided to start with the frames and hit up several stores looking for good deals. Flea markets are perfect for this kind of shopping. The color of frame really doesn’t matter. There’s spray paint to fix that situation to make them any color you’d like.

{2nd} Butcher Paper

Butcher PaperOnce I had frames of various sizes, I cut butcher paper to fit the size of each frame. Then I taped the pieces to the wall so I could play and move them around to make different arrangements – without making millions of holes. Here’s a fantastic resource for different ways to arrange your pictures (sample below). This was also a good way to tell if I needed to buy more frames or find fun objects to fill some spaces.

Sample Gallery Wall Arrangements

{3rd} Mixed Media

Gallery Wall Initial

Here’s a closeup of a few odds & ends I included in my gallery. Also notice the interesting shapes on some of the frames. That can help add interest to your collection, as well.

Gallery Wall Small Touches

I love how this distressed wooden flower coordinates with the framed fabric.

I decided to make room in my arrangement for a few odds and ends to add interest. Sentimental objects, like an initial letter “A” that was sitting on a bookshelf, made perfect additions to the wall. I also shopped for pretty pieces of fabric in coordinating patterns to add pops of color here and there. (The pictures are a little misleading because I actually hung these items while there was still just butcher paper on the wall. I forgot to snap pics at that stage.)

{4th} Photos

Walgreens Photo OrderNow for the pictures! Based on my arrangement, I was able to make a list of how many (and what size) pictures were needed. I combed through my phone and computer, decided on the top pics, and ordered prints online. Walgreen’s photo lab was easiest for me because there’s a store close to my house. I was able to order and pick up pictures within hours. Pretty slick. Once I got the pictures home, I put them directly into their assigned frames.

{5th} Lipstick, Hammer & Nails

Hanging Picture Tip with Lipstick

Left: Paper is still on the wall; Right: I’m making a lipstick mark on the picture frame hardware.

Yes, I just said lipstick. With the butcher paper still on the wall, my mixed media items now in tact, and all of my pictures in their frames, I took an old tube of lipstick (the one that was way too bright and scared my children) and marked the back of my frame where the nail needed to go.

Hanging Picture Tip with Lipstick MarkI pushed the frame against the butcher paper so I left a mark directly on the paper. That told me exactly where to place the nail.

Hanging Picture Tip

Left: I nailed through the paper – just enough to make a small hole; Right: I removed the paper and nail to reveal the perfect spot.

As you can see, I tapped the nail right through the paper, removed it all from the wall and then nailed for real so I could hang the picture already.

That’s it! I repeated the process until all of my pictures were hung in the hallway with care.

How simple is that? Hopefully you’re saying, “Yes, super simple, Kate. Thanks for being so awesome and sharing that with me!” Okay, maybe not, but hopefully it eased your mind a teensy bit about tackling your next gallery project. Have fun and be sure to share pictures of your pictures.

Wishing you the best.

-Kate

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It’s a Friday Wrap

Happy Friday!! Despite my son nearly breaking his wrist playing indoor soccer (x-rays came back clean, thank goodness), it’s been a pretty good week. The weather has been beautiful, so we’ve tried to play outside as much as possible – knowing wicked winter weather is bound to be on the heels of this warm spell.

With that, here are a few highlights from the week:

{ONE} Explored the outdoors of Crystal Bridges

Exploring Crystal Bridges

This is a quick pick of the girls resting their legs on a rock bridge that spans across a little creek. The day was absolutely gor-geous!

Crystal Bridges Museum is a wondrous place to visit whether you live here or ever plan to visit beautiful Northwest Arkansas. It has taken the art industry by storm with its all-American art collection. (I should be a docent for them or something.) Anyway, curving along the edges of the museum’s gorgeous landscape are several hiking trails, which are sprinkled with sculptures and other fun art displays.

Kids playing with art

This giant frame is found along the Tulip trail. Can you tell which famous pieces of art they’re portraying? (Answer guide: Scream, The Thinker, American Gothic) I should remember this for Halloween!

The kids were out of school on Monday, so we decided to spend the day hitting the trails. We also stopped for a few laughs, because we’re goofy like that.

{TWO} Jazzed up the door with decorFront door wreathOur front door has been naked ever since we removed the holiday decorations! It seems too early for a Valentine wreath, too. Sometimes transitions are hard. When I found this adorable wall hanging on sale at Hobby Lobby, I thought the laurel pattern felt kind of wreathy. I decided to hang it outside, tie a white burlap ribbon from the back hook, and add a bow for some pop. What do you think? Will this get me through until heart season?

{THREE} Started the paperwhite watch

Forcing paperwhite bulbs

Left: What I planted two weeks ago. Right: What it looks like today!

The indoors also felt a tad bland. I thought it would be fun to force paperwhite bulbs for some color – and life. I wasn’t exactly sure how long they’d take to bloom. I started two weeks ago and have been watching these suckers grow like crazy. The first blooms popped open Wednesday. It was like a little party in the vase.

I’m thinking about growing some to give as Valentine’s gifts. If you want to do the same, I’d recommend planting them by early next week so they bloom in time. I’d be happy to post a “how-to” on this if anyone is interested. Just comment to let me know.

{FOUR} Read about moments of grace

Small Victories by Anne Lamott

This is such a great book!

I received Anne Lamott’s latest book for Christmas and finally got around to reading it this past week. It’s a treasure. Her writing is hilarious, honest and spiritual. In fact, it would make a great Valentine gift for a friend if you’re looking for non-food items – other than the gorg paperwhites above. One of my favorite quotes from the book:

“…we stood outside an inner gate, showed our IDs to the guards, and got our hands stamped with fluorescent ink. “You don’t glow, you don’t go,” said one cheerful, pockmarked guard, which was the best spiritual advice I’d had in a long time.”

{FIVE} Caught up on my stash of cards

hallmark_logo

“When you care enough to send the very best.”

I’m still a fan of sending greeting cards – especially for family and close friends. Facebook is awesome, don’t get me wrong. I just like sending the very best when I can. And yes, Hallmark is my favorite greeting card company. They have some of the funniest, prettiest and poignant cards available, IMO.

Once a month, I like to take my list of birthdays and anniversaries and stock up. I use a perpetual calendar like the one pictured below to keep track. Definitely get one of these if you can!

Perepetual calendarWhile I was in the store stacking up for February, I pulled the last card from one of the slots and discovered this funny sign. I noticed there were others, too. I had to share.

Hallmark cards

There were several messages like these behind all of the cards. You know how much I love bunnies?! The top one made me laugh out loud.

That pretty much wraps the week. I’m off to make igneous rock out of Rice Krispies for Avery’s science class. #lifeofamom Have an incredible weekend. I have tons of fun in store for next week, so be sure to stop back by!

In the meantime, check out some amazing bloggers at Five on Friday.FiveonfridayYou can also see some honest, and sometimes hilarious Friday confessions at A Blonde Ambition.HeaderTrans_zpscb139c50<3 Kate

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Preparing Your Christmas Table

Christmas Table

I’m looking forward to using these dishes this year! They were recently given to me by my MIL. Don’t you love family treasures?

Thoughtfully preparing your Christmas table is one way to show guests how grateful you are to have them. Love is definitely in the details, so here are a few essentials I’ve rounded up for you.

Set a Proper Place

There are two ways to set a table: informal and formal. No matter what, you want to keep your table to a minimum so it’s comfortable for guests. Only set out the utensils and glassware needed for what you are serving. For instance, you might not need that cocktail fork if everyone is just snacking in the living room beforehand.

Here’s a printable Place Setting Cheat Sheet. Below is a sneak peek of what it looks like.

Place Setting Cheat Sheet

Source: Damsel in Dior

Include Names with Napkins

If you’re going casual, using holiday-themed paper napkins is totally fine. You can still make them special by personalizing with place cards. Place cards are a thoughtful, simple way to welcome each person to the table. Here are some fun ideas:

Candy Cards

Candy Cane Place Cards

This is such a sweet idea. It’s just a piece of paper with ribbon threaded through two holes punched on either side. Image source: Martha Stewart

Musical Scrolls and Greenery

Scrolls and Holly

To assemble, take a snip of holly (or any greenery) and add a paper scroll, which is just a piece of paper that’s been rolled around a pencil on each end. Image source: Martha Stewart

Holiday Lights

Lightbulb Place Card

If you’ve had a few lights burn out on you, here’s a new way to repurpose them. Paint the bulbs and use as place cards. Throw an ornament hook on there and you have an instant gift, as well! Image source: Taste of Home

If you’re using cloth napkins, try folding them in an interesting way before adding your festive place cards. I was inspired to try new folding methods by my MIL. When we visited for Thanksgiving, she gave me a great handout that includes ways to fold interesting shapes such as fans and pockets. For now here are two holiday-themed folds:

The Tree Fold

Christmas Tree Fold

This is the Christmas tree fold. I’m thinking you could add a paper star at the top that doubles as a name card. Image source: Marmite Pon Pon

The Bow Fold

bow fold

This reminds me of a bow on a Christmas package. In fact, you could decorate a square piece of paper like a gift and use it as a place card tucked under the bow. Image source: Nancy Creative

Add Pretty Centerpieces

You definitely want to treat your guests to something pretty in the center of your table. Go for several low arrangements to make conversation easy. Also add some tea light candles to enhance the festive atmosphere. Some of my favorite flower combinations include:

White Roses and Pine Boughs

White roses and pine boughs

This bouquet was featured on BHG. Simple and lovely. White roses and pine should both be easy to source this time of year.

Sage and Pine Cones

sage and pine cones

I love the silvery look and savory smell of sage. This pairs so beautifully with pine cones. This was designed by Mark Kintzel. You can grow fresh sage indoors this time of year and pine cones can be harvested from any nearby pine tree!

White Mums, Baby’s Breath and Dusty Miller

mums and dusy miller

I’m not usually a fan of mums, but seeing them gathered with baby’s breath and dusty miller provides a whole new appreciation. This was used as a wedding bouquet featured on One Wed, but you could pull these together in a small vase for a breath-taking arrangement. Your local florist should have these items.

Hydrangea and Hypericum Berries

White hydrangea and berries

I love the simplicity of these berries tucked into billowy hydrangea blossoms. To top it off, they’re held in a silver julep cup. This would be gorgeous on any Christmas table. Source: Julie Blanner

Organize Your Serving Pieces

This is a tip for your side table, and it’s something I’ve been doing for years. Place serving dishes and utensils out the day before and label with sticky notes as to what goes in each dish.

Serving Pieces with Sticky Notes

Image source: Kitchen Concoctions.

This step ensures things go smoothly when it’s go-time for serving up the food. Doing this a day ahead gives you time to gather any missing items from your kind neighbor – or closest Bed Bath & Beyond. Planning out each dish also ensures you don’t leave anything delicious in the refrigerator! #beenthere

Enjoy a Toast

Another side-table tip is to create a bar cart with your guests’ favorite beverages. That way you can welcome everyone with a proper toast, as well as save space in the fridge and on the kitchen counter.

Bar Cart

This is a lovely bar cart I saw on this site: Waiting on Martha.

Simply repurpose a side table or wooden tray table with an ice bucket of drinks, bottles of wine, glasses and opener so guests can help themselves at any time.

Here’s hoping your dinner goes off without a hitch, and that your table is as beautiful as you are.

Cheers, my friends!

-Kate

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Friday Wrap

What a week! It was filled to the brim with activities and projects (both personal and work related), and it’s still not over. Give this mama another Starbucks already.

So quick confession, I think I showered maybe twice and pretty much lived in a ball cap all week. I think the number of projects on my plate compared to the number of days lived in a ball cap are directly proportional to each other. I will say, through my blizzard of activities I really did have a good time (still am). Here are a few highlights of the week:

  • {ONE} wedding flowers: My niece, Sarah, and I made these sweet pew markers for a family wedding this weekend. Finding fake greenery that looked natural was a bit of a challenge, but we found nice pine sprigs from Hob Lob and added pretty creme-colored flowers to match the rest of the wedding bouquets. We wrapped them with burlap ribbon and wired on some pew clips so all we have to do is slip them on and go!Wedding FlowersSpeaking of weddings, my niece, Emma, is getting married this June! She’s such a sweetheart and asked me to help with invites and other paper goods. I promise to share my projects and discoveries as I go.
  • {TWO} white elephant gift: My husband’s office party is this weekend, so I had to find a white elephant gift. Talk about a fun shopping project. I knew I’d find something awesome at The Mustache, which I did. I almost went with a boot-shaped shot glass, but I landed on these drink coasters with misheard lyrics. Although, I was like, “Wait, sweet dreams aren’t made of cheese?!” #eurythmics #musicfailMisheard Lyrics
  • {THREE} costumes: Don’t you love it when your child comes home from school (the day before the school play) letting you know she needs a costume? Awesome. I panicked for a moment thinking I had to somehow fashion two costumes (life of a twin mom). Thankfully her twin sister was told to use the sugar bear costume from the music department. Yes, sugar bear. Could you imagine having to come up with that in a night’s time? Avery was selected as a candy cane. Totally doable. I grabbed a white shirt and roll of red Duct tape for instant stripes. Thank the high heavens for Duct tape, btw. It was a little plain, though, so we added a tutu. I took strips of red and white tulle, tied them to a piece of elastic and then secured it around her waist. Done, next!Costumes
  • {FOUR} party clothes: I ordered a couple of cute dresses from LollyWollyDoodle for the first time. Am I late to the party on this one? Regardless, they have some stinkin’ cute stuff on that site. I just hope they arrive in time for our mother-daughter holiday party next week! I’ll be sure to share pics when the dresses get here.Lolly logo
  • {FIVE} genius gift wrap: I’m sure you’ve seen the internet sensation of Japanese gift wrapping – where you wrap a gift in less than 12 seconds with a piece of paper and a few slices of tape. I was in complete awe watching this video. It also inspired me to share some other fun and easy (‘cause that’s how I roll) ways to wrap gifts. So be sure to stop back next week.
Gift Wrap Hack

Watch this video of super-fast wrapping. It should be a sport.

I’m linking up with the fun ladies who sponsor Five on Friday again. Be sure to check them out. As always, they’re amazeblogs! FiveonfridayHave a festive weekend, my sweet friends.

-Kate

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Christmas Mantel Magic

Christmas MantleMantels rank right up there with Christmas trees when it comes to important places in the house to decorate. It’s the first thing Santa sees when he drops down that chimney, you know. Gotta impress the big guy.

I wanted to do something different for the mantel this year, and I love the look of chalkboard messages as the focal point. That was really the main inspiration for this year’s look.

Now, I didn’t want to spend a fortune on a large chalkboard. I also didn’t want to mess with buying hardware supplies and chalk paint to try and make one. I wanted something a little more temporary, but that still looked nice. So…off to Hobby Lobby I went.

After finding black wrapping paper and a box of white chalk, I had a thought…I’d just wrap a painting!

I had NO idea how this was going to turn out. I figured the worst that could happen is I’d be out $6 from the supplies and possibly be featured on Pinstrosity. I decided I could live with that.

Since I already had a large painting, I was able to use that as the base.

Thanksgiving Mantle

This is what things looked like before the Christmas transformation. Notice the painting? That’s what I used for the base of my “faux real” chalkboard.

All I did was roll out the paper and wrap the painting like a giant present. I used double-sided tape to carefully adhere the paper.

Backside of Painting

This is the back where you can see how I just wrapped to the edges.

“Oh Holy Night” is one of my favorite Christmas songs, so I knew I wanted to use this for the art. Chalk CloseupI used regular ol’ chalk to write. I discovered it easily wiped off with my hand. If I felt more confident in my hand lettering, I probably would have used a chalk marker.

Liquid ChalkA note on the wrapping paper. Hob Lob only had glossy paper. It turned out really nice, but a matte finish would probably look even better.

Matte Paper

This pretty matte paper is on Amazon.

Once the chalkboard was up, I added some finishing touches.

Finishing Touches

I added lanterns, paperwhites, and a few red and silver ornaments tucked inside clear cylinder vases with snow at the base.

Bonus idea: Another way to repurpose a picture is to swap it out with a beautiful Christmas card.

Christmas Card PicThis idea is compliments of my sister. She snapped a quick pic of the one in her home, and I thought it was such a creative way to holidate (holiday + decorate) your house. Thanks, Debby!

Now, show me your mantels. (I’m totally making t-shirts that say that.) Be sure to take pics, use #TheNeatNook, and tag me on Instagram @Katejandersen so we can all see your creations.

Have the most creative day, yet.

-Kate

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Thankful Thursday: New Paint!

This week I’m thankful for finally getting our bedroom painted. Brandon and I have been wanting to freshen up the color for quite some time and other things kept cutting in line – like replacing the dishwasher and tires on the car. You know how it goes.

So this week it finally happened. We scheduled our favorite paint guy (Kim Valentine for anyone who lives in NWA), and I came home from work yesterday to the finished product. It was so worth having my clothes and bedroom furniture sprawled all around the living room for two days. Even if I was heckled by my kids for the amount of clothes I had shoved into my closet.

For the color we went with Quiet Moments from Benjamin Moore. The description on the website says, “Tranquility seems to ooze from this light, blue-gray that inspires moments of quiet meditation. This soothing shade creates a look of elegance and simplicity.” Um, yes, please. I’ll take several gallons – for my entire house.

The color is perfect with our bedding, too. We have the Charlie Paisley from PB. If you can’t find me for a few days, I’ll be the one sleeping in the tranquility of quiet meditation.

Charlie Duvet

Charlie Paisley Organic Duvet Cover from Pottery Barn

Oh, one other thing I’m thankful for this week (and actually discovered in this painting process) is Mr. Clean Magic Erasers. Whaa? Where have these been all my life, and why hasn’t anyone told me about them sooner? Magic EraserWe had a few scuffs on our doorways and closet shelves that were driving me crazy. The freshly painted walls made the scuffs look even worse. They looked dirty and just wouldn’t wash off – or so I thought. Enter, Magic Erasers. A few good swipes and just like the name says, all of the scuffs were erased. Magically. Needless to say, I was wiping practically every surface in the house. I swear, if they ever want to do one of those cheesy infomercials on how awesome they work, sign me up. No pride here.

So those are some of the highlights of the week so far. I’d love to hear some of your discoveries and what makes you feel thankful. Comment on the blog or post on Twitter or Instagram using #ThankfulThursday so everyone can share in your happiness.

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DIY Pottery Barn Ornaments

Pottery Barn Inspired OrnamentsAs promised, I’m going to share lots of DIY holiday projects this season. Now that Thanksgiving is T-minus 11 days and counting, I think it’s safe to start thinking about Christmas. I don’t know about you, but I like to keep my holidays as separate and special as possible. I feel this way about lots of things. When I was little I had one of those divided dinner plates because I didn’t like my food touching. Holidays are the same for me. I don’t like any Jingle Bells spilling into my Jack-o-lanterns.

Okay, let’s kick this off with a few ornaments. I was thumbing through the most recent PB catalog and saw a few ornaments that looked like perfect DIY candidates. I gave them a try, and they turned out great. Plus they were ridiculously easy to make. I had to share!

Ornament Supplies

The basic supplies for all three ornaments!

>> Glitter Initial Ornament

Glitter Initial Ornament

I used a silver glitter that looks like pewter.

What you need:

  • Chipboard letters
  • Spray glitter (the secret ingredient)
  • Ribbon for hanging
  • Small hole punch, if needed

What to do:

When you use a can of spray glitter, all you have to do is place your chipboard letter on top of some newspaper and spray away. That. Is. It. Once the glitter dries, you can add another coat, if needed. Be sure to turn and spray the backside, as well. That way it looks pretty from all sides when it’s hanging from the tree.

If your letters don’t have holes at the top, you can use a small hole punch. Then take your ribbon, thread it through the holes and secure with a small knot at each end.

Backside of Glitter Monogram

I tied knots on the back side of the letter.

An easy alternative would be to hot glue the ribbon to the backside of the letter.

>> White Feather Ornament

I tried to take a pic with the ornament backlit so you could see the feather better. It's really pretty in person!

I tried to take a pic with the ornament backlit so you could see the feather. It’s really pretty in person!

What you need:

  • Clear glass globe ornament
  • Package of white feathers or a feather boa
  • Toothpick or bamboo skewer
  • Ribbon for hanging

What to do:

Carefully open the top of your ornament by pinching the two sides of wire that are threaded down inside. Next, take one of your feathers and slip it inside the globe.Feather OrnamentYou might need to take a toothpick or skewer to help fan out the feather inside the globe. I added two feathers to help fill the space. Slip the top back on and add a pretty ribbon.

Similar ornaments sell for $10.50 each at Pottery Barn. I made six of these for the same price. Plus, you can probably make them faster and easier than you can say “Christmas.”

>> Monogrammed Glass Globe Ornament

Monogrammed Glass Globe OrnamentWhat you need:

  • Clear glass globe ornament
  • Adhesive letters
  • Ribbon for hanging

What to do:

Once you select the letter you’d like to use, simply adhere it to your clear ornament. If your letters are small enough, you can do a full monogram. Here’s a nice refresher on monogram rules by Mark & Graham. Once your letter is in place, simply tie the top with a gorgeous bow and boom, clap, you’re done.

Any of these ideas, especially the personalized initial ornaments, would make amazing hostess gifts, teacher gifts and friend gifts!

Oh, and light bulb sleeves make great ornament packaging. (I love to repurpose when possible.) Trim the sleeve to size, tuck your ornament inside, and wrap the outside with wrapping paper or tissue and a bow.

Have fun making these ornaments! If you don’t have time to make them this week, no worries. Just pin the project on a Pinterest board for later. Be sure to stop by tomorrow for Creative Tip Tuesday. I’ll have some (hopefully) inspiring words on how to stay calm, cool and creative this crazy season.

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DIY Pumpkin Seed Ornaments

IMG_4412Earlier this week I listed three ways to use your Halloween pumpkin seeds – other than the usual heat and eat. One idea I mentioned was making a beautiful and easy ornament like this one above. And when I say easy, I mean it took me all of 20 minutes to gather my goods and have this picture taken. Not to mention, I had everything I needed on hand. Hopefully you will, too!

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • Dried pumpkin seeds
  • Small seeds for the center
  • Cardboard circle – about 2” in diameter
  • Piece of felt – same size as the cardboard
  • Pretty ribbon
  • Glue gun
IMG_4346

All of the supplies, minus the glue gun

Ways to make this practically free:

  • The pumpkin seeds can come from your freshly carved jack-o-lantern.
  • The small seeds can be anything from birdseed (which I had in the garage) to poppy seeds (which might be in the spice rack).
  • I raided the recycle bin for cardboard. Then I traced the bottom of a mason jar to get a perfect 2″ circle.
  • Inexpensive squares of felt can be found at any craft store.
  • When it comes to ribbon, I’m like a squirrel. Any time I receive a gift or see ribbon on sale, I stash it away in plastic bins in my craft area (aka garage). I received this gorg velvet ribbon on a gift and knew it would find the perfect craft one day. Hello.

Here’s the step-by-step guide:

  1. Fire up your glue gun!
  2. Glue seeds to the outside rim of the cardboard circle. Then work your way to the center with each row of seeds.
  3. Once you’ve filled the entire cardboard, place a dot of glue in the middle of your ornament.
  4. Sprinkle smaller seeds on top. Birdseed, poppy seeds, even sunflower seeds would be pretty.Steps
  5. Glue your strip of ribbon to the back of your ornament in a loop.
  6. The finishing step is to cover the back of the ribbon with felt. This makes it look nice from all angles.
    Finishing step

    The final steps. Boom. Boom. Done.

    You’re finished! How easy was that? As I was making this, my mind was racing with fun ideas for how to display and use these ornaments. I might be making a few dozen batches of these babies!

  • Hang it to the stem of a pumpkin for some added charm.
  • Tie it to the top of a holiday gift. After all, it is an ornament.
  • Give it as a hostess gift hooked to the neck of a bottle of wine. Be sure to make the ribbon long enough to slip around the bottle.
  • Attach to the center of a bow on wreath for an extra accent like this!IMG_4374
  • Or add to any decorative element. I’m going to put this cuteness on my mantle.Decorative
  • Make festive Thanksgiving napkin rings! Instead of looping the ribbon, glue the ribbon flat in the center so you can tie it securely around your napkin. See below.IMG_4408

Happy crafting and enjoy your lovely pumpkin seed ornaments!

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