Wouldn’t this be a great time to escape to the French countryside? I’m picturing a little stone cottage with wooden shutters, glowing light shining warmly through diamond paned leaded windows, and covered in climbing vines. I love the relaxed, warm elegance of French Provincial decor. And I’m a little obsessed with the set designs of the lastest live action ‘Cinderella’ and ‘Beauty and the Beast’ Disney films. 🙂 which both feature stunning Old World interiors.
If you want to add a little provincial charm to your space, I have some great finds for you! This is an excellent look if you’re already starting with some natural rustic elements in your interior, such as a big stone fireplace, exposed beams, or plaster walls. If you’re going for a French country look, consider using a muted yellow-gold, gray, gray-blue, or muted sage on the walls. Adding gorgeous toiles on pillows, curtains, or wallpaper is also a surefire way to bring in some Old Country charm.
If you’re looking for something unique and creative for your fall home decor, try making your own hoop wreath! I made mine from a few dollars worth of materials and in only a few hours time. I’m also including some downloadable options if you would like to add some fun fall elements to your wreath! The supply list contains affiliate links. Thanks for supporting my site! 🙂
Glue a small amount of Spanish moss across the bottom of the hoop with a hot glue gun.
Arrange the flowers and grasses the way you want them on your wreath.
Starting with the bottom grasses and flowers, glue them in place with the glue gun. Tuck the ends into the Spanish moss.
Print the circular graphics onto printer paper.
Glue one of the circles onto a piece of cardboard or cardstock using spray adhesive.
When dry, cut out the circle.
Glue another paper circle to the other side of your cutout. I added some chalk paint details to the squirrel in green, gray, and tan, but that’s optional. The graphics include several options so you can make your circle reversible.
Make a small hole in the top of the circle for hanging it.
Our need for a big change in our house came along gradually, but this year we finally decided enough was enough with having a huge space that we weren’t really using ninety percent of the time. The space was our oldest daughter’s bedroom. She went to college at 18, and never lived at home since except on semester breaks and some summers. She’s now a PhD candidate. It’s still a big priority for us that she has her own space each time she comes home, but we also needed the space to be more usable at some point.
Add to that that our youngest daughter is in her first semester of college, studying from home (a hundred percent of the time now because of the pandemic), and occupying a small bedroom, and the time was right to give this space an overhall.
Don’t get me wrong, I love all those modern farmhouse and shiplap designs, but I also never want to have a cookie-cutter approach in my interior. I love a shot of bold color in a room, and I like my home to be personalized.
My goals with the space were to improve it for the oldest when she visits home, provide a great study space for our at-home college student, and make the space a functional guest room if needed. I designed this space for my daughters keeping in mind what would work for them and what elements they would appreciate.
The first choice was the color scheme. The oldest had picked super bright colors when she was a kid, and that’s what was there when I started. We decided to keep the lime green (a shade called lime rickey, still available) because it would be a connection to her design rather than just changing the whole thing, and I really felt it could look awesome paired with black and white. The ceiling of this room is lime green, and it does look cool that way. We chose very light gray on all of the walls with white trim to give everything else a neutral background.
And of course, my next step was starting a pinterest board full of ideas!
The first item I chose was the large pineapple botanical print. When I first saw it, I knew that was my color scheme and what I wanted to build the room around. It had the bright green and black I wanted, and featured pineapples, a huge favorite of the younger daughter, both for eating and as decor. 🙂
Believe it or not, we found someone who was moving and giving away the perfect desk for our space! My husband and son were great, as usual, about taking a drive to go lift something heavy for me so that I could continue the quest for the perfect study lounge update! The desk did not come with a hutch, which I thought was key, so I continued my search.
I found a big solid wood hutch on Craig’s List that was the right width for the desk. I really debated whether or not to even go see it, because it was very 1980s looking and wasn’t even a desk hutch. I’m not sure what it was. Also it was all wood and did not match the desk. But, for $15, I once again talked my husband into going with me to pick up something heavy. 🙂
I painted the hutch, except for the top surface, with an ivory furniture paint. To make the hutch look the same as the desk, I combed the paint some and gave it a grain. The desk has an antiqued or weathered look, so I added some glaze over top of the paint until both pieces matched. I changed out the dated knobs for some that matched the desk. It worked better than I expected! I ended up with the exact big desk I wanted for $15 plus painting supplies!
We already had a vintage mid-century round coffee table in the room, so we kept that. I felt the ideal solution to having a comfy study lounge would be to have a sofa in the space. I wanted a sleeper sofa in case we ever needed it. The mid century style sofa in dark charcoal is perfect with the coffee table. My son also gave me a vintage end table with an iron magazine rack that he and his wife didn’t need anymore to finish out the seating area.
The other furniture pieces in the room are a daybed and a roomy metal bookshelf to store all those academic materials.
I really feel that changing the lighting style in a room changes the whole feel and that lighting is one of the most important design choices. I chose black farmhouse industrial style pendants with edison bulbs. For one thing, they are an absolute steal on Amazon. They also perfectly combine the trendy with the traditional, which is what I was going for.
Beyond that, I personalized the space and tried to throw in touches that are special for my daughters. The pineapples are one of those. I have a small “welcome home” sign on the desk to let the older know this is always her place, too. I looked around for an elephant to feature prominently because she graduated from the University of Alabama where Al the Elephant roams the sidelines as the mascot. We bought some handmade flowers of the kind she always liked to buy from a local craft fair. There are some global touches because we have a multicultural family. Both girls love plaids, checks, and warm fuzzy blankets. And we all traveled to New Orleans together at Thanksgiving a few years ago which was an amazing family trip, so as soon as I saw the French Quarter sign, I knew it would be perfect.
This room was really a whole family effort. My husband was kept busy with fixing some water damage in the drywall most of the time, so I did a lot of the other aspects myself on this one. It was so fun being creative together and coming up with a really great room in the end.
Now, we are using the space every day and it’s also much better for guests if needed.
We have lots of other projects to do in this old house, but I’m thankful now given the study at home situation that we completed this one!
I decorated this space relying heavily on Amazon, so I’m going to provide the shop the look info. I am an Amazon affiliate too, but there was not one purchase I was disappointed in, and I was going for budget-conscious shopping.
Click on links for the full details.
Have a beautiful day, and try something colorful! 🙂
Isn’t mercury glass so beautiful? I’ve been eyeing gorgeous pieces for Christmas decor and tree ornaments, wedding decor, and everything in-between.
Today I tried my hand at a little DIY mercury glass project. Where was the first place I checked when I realized I needed some jars? The recycling bin! Luckily for me, tomorrow is trash day, so I had a great selection of glass containers. I worked with a small glass jar from grated cheese today, but this same technique would work with any glass container.
I love a whole grouping of glass together. Mercury glass looks equally at home in romantic vintage decor or a contemporary setting. These DIY jars would look great with a large group of them hanging at a party or wedding, grouped on a mantle, or on a tablescape. In fact, I love this easy project so much, I plan to make a set of mercury glass from everything I can find to upcycle!
Most of us would agree that a great kitchen occupies the top of our wish list when it comes to our dwelling place. I’ve seen a ton of the “chef’s kitchens” all over home improvement shows and real estate listings, but there is another way to go with a kitchen redo. An amazing vintage-style kitchen has a decidedly cozier vibe than the stainless steel and granite look that is so prevalent. Especially if you want to stay in character with your home’s architecture and build date, a vintage kitchen might be just what you’re looking for.
The kitchen really is the heart of the home, the place where you make your morning tea or coffee, where all those aromas of Christmas cookies, homemade soups, and weekend breakfasts originate, and where you sit around the kitchen table and catch up with the family after a day’s work.
I have fond memories from my childhood of hanging out in my family’s kitchen, laughing the night away with my sisters and mom, playing a game of yahtzee, or getting out my big box of crayons and doing an art project. I absolutely love the feel of a comfortable nostaligic kitchen.
If you’re looking to add some vintage charm to your kitchen, there are a ton of great ideas and products out there to help you achieve the perfect retro kitchen.
Ideas for a vintage style kitchen
With any interior space, color really sets the tone. This is especially true in a vintage restoration. Bright, cheerful colors dominated design choices in the forties, fifties, and sixties. Our first home, a brick ranch duplex built in the 1950’s, featured yellow formica countertops in the kitchen and aqua and black ceramic tile in the bathroom! Pink was a huge trend in the 1950s as a result of Mamie Eisenhower’s fondness for the color. In fact, like many midcentury homes, the 1950s home I grew up in had a pink-tiled bathroom. For color ideas for your kitchen, consider these great options:
Way before millenials discovered this fabulous color, pink was all the rage for decor in the 1950s. Once the shade was popularized by the first lady, everything was in the pink until the early sixties.
Black and white
Stark black and white are bold accents in a vintage kitchen. Often, black tile was used against a bright or pastel. Checkerboard and octagon and dot patterns in black and white are perfect.
Bright cherry red is an excellent choice, especially combined with chrome for a diner feel.
Turquoise blue provides a cheerful hue in a vintage kitchen. Lighter tones are gorgeous on cabinetry or appliances, and bold tones combine well with red.
In the 1940s and 1950s, jadeite glassware become popular, along with other lines of green dishware. Mamie Eisenhower also employed quite a bit of green along with her pink. Green is a terrific option for a vintage kitchen with shades ranging from spring green to muted jade.
The first two homes my husband and I lived in were both circa 1950s. They both had windows over the sink with small shelves and a decorative valence as seen in the top photo of this post. They both had really tall cabinets.
If you are lucky enough to live in an older home you want to restore, I would say try to keep the cabinets, or at least some of them. Cabinets can be painted, updated with storage features, or partially salvaged to add to the authenticity of your home. Sometimes you don’t need a whole new kitchen.
For new cabinets and cupboards, you can think about ways to make sure they are in keeping with your overall design. Consider going extra tall with your cabinets. On a plain door design, adding nostalgic glass knobs and drawer pulls provides a beautiful look and an accent of color. Cabinet manufacturers do carry pastel colors, or choose white and add color in accessories, walls, and flooring. Consider adding some glass-front doors as well.
Add some free-standing painted furniture cabinet pieces to continue the vintage charm.
Tile flooring is ideal for a kitchen restoration. If you really want to be authentic, genuine linoleum tile might be a good option and it’s also colorful and durable.
Ceramic tile offers limitless choices. I love the bold graphic tiles with a bit of black or an octagon and dot mosaic look.
Wallpaper featuring vintage patterns that brings together your color scheme is an awesome choice for your retro style kitchen. Solid painted walls can look great as well, especially with some amazing vintage artwork or advertising.
There are some truly remarkable vintage-style appliances out there that combine modern functioning with all the charm of a nostalgic kitchen. If you’re commited to the restoration of a period home, it’s definitely worth looking into these great appliance options.
Can you imagine looking at these every time you walk into your kitchen? It’s like being in that cool diner that serves great eggs all the time.
Small details make a huge difference, like choosing your dishes to complement the design of your kitchen. Consider pink glassware, jadeite, atomic designs, nostalgic florals, whatever suits your style best.
Display some dishes in a glass-fronted cabinet if possible.
Patterned dish towels and tablecloths that are genuine vintage or vintage-inspired will add tremendously to your decor. Aprons, oven mitts, and kitchen curtains are all elements to consider.
8. Lighting fixtures
Authentic lighting fixtures can really make all the difference in design. Consider what the overall theme is in your room. In a bold red kitchen, chrome may be a great choice. Schoolhouse lights are really great in any 1950s kitchen. Atomic fixtures can be awesome too if that goes with the rest of the decor. There are so many great reproduction lighting options out there to choose from.
A vintage kitchen is definitely an eat-in kitchen, so make sure to take a look at vintage-style kitchen tables. A cozy booth like your favorite diner or a built-in banquette would be amazing. Bar stools in a snazzy vintage design are also perfect.
This is the really fun part if you ask me. The possibilities for retro accessories are almost endless. Wall clocks, radios, old school fans, menu boards, lighted signs, rotary phones, it’s just all too much fun!
I think the time is right for designs drawing from the past. Young people are nostalgic these days, and many of us would just like to return to a simpler time, even if it’s just in our home. We’re craving peace, stability, and some comfort food. Yeah comfort food, that’s it. How about a nice meatloaf sandwich with a side of mashed potatoes? 🙂
Have a beautiful day, and add something fun to your life. 🙂
Hello and happy first day of October! Are you looking for a super simple way to add some fall cheer to your walls or classroom? These four fall printables remind me of a peaceful farmhouse and of simpler times.
I hope you enjoy them. Let’s be thankful for the little joys in life these days. 🙂
I don’t know about you, but I love Thanksgiving! The traditional recipes (in our house, that’s turkey, mashed potatoes, baked yams, juicy stuffing, and something we call seafoam salad, made from pears, jello, and cream cheese–trust me it’s delicious), the family, and of course giving thanks for all of our many blessings.
In the last few years, I have taken over hosting from my mother-in-law, which has actually been a lot of fun. I relish all the planning, and especially decorating the table creatively with a unique tablescape every year. This year, I’m not sure how many of us will be together because of the pandemic, but I’m still planning and we will definitely still be as thankful as always and celebrate as much as possible under the circumstances.
Before we get into the post, thank you for checking out the blog today! You can take 25 percent off any purchase of $200 or more at Kate Aspen! Just use code TAKE25. Kate Aspen carries all kinds of beautiful party and wedding supplies.
I have a gorgeous quilted table runner made for me by my mother in law from beautiful Mode Rue 1800 fabrics that will set the theme for my table this year. From there, I’m going with a shabby chic farmhouse feel combining soft colors and various textures. Here are a few of my favorite ideas for a shabby chic holiday table.
Start with a subtle color scheme. My table runner is a blend of shell pink, taupe, ivory, and subdued sage green. While not traditional for a fall tablescape, the light colors shine in farmhouse decor.
Let your tabletop become part of your decor. We have a big distressed oak table that can seat a crowd. I like the look of the wood, so I often use seasonal and decorative placemats instead of a tablecloth that would completely cover the surface. As an added benefit, placemats make for easy cleanup.
Layer elements at each place setting. I love to use a few layers of decoration at each place. I have combined solid woven placemats with copper and silver cut-out maple placemats. I also love to mix up a couple of napkin patterns. Here, each guest has a metallic polka-dot napkin and a traditional turkey napkin.
Use pastel floral china for a shabby chic feel. I love the light pink florals with my other colors. Pink and Thanksgiving are not two words you would normally associate, but I love the combination this year!
Find a versatile Thanksgiving decorating piece. I love my white gilded turkey. My little gobbler goes with everything. No matter where I place him, he’s always at home. I remember the day my son with special needs picked this out at Home Goods (and he rarely wants anything from stores) and now I’m so glad he asked for it!
Bring in some natural elements. I love using twig spheres, cotton, pine cones, small pumpkins, and gourds on the table. They definitely remind us of the season we’re celebrating.
Add a showstopper centerpiece to the table. A gorgeous display of blooms at the center of your table will be the crowning touch to a beautiful table. Here I have used large floral orbs you can make yourself (see post here) as a focal point for my centerpieces.
Break out the good stuff. In our home, we have a ton of items that are especially for the holidays. For example, it’s our tradition to use stemware on holidays but it stays in the sideboard for the rest of the year. Everyone looks forward to seeing those special items each year, and I’m so glad we started these traditions many years ago. Crystal candleholders are another item we love for a holiday table setting.
Add some mixed metallic details. I love the look of the copper and silver leaves, rose gold orbs, gold-rimmed china, and gilded turkey all together on one table.
I hope you find a few ideas here as you begin your Thanksgiving preparations! If you are interested in creating a similar look, please see my Shop the Look on Amazon! Contains affiliate links; thanks so much for supporting my blog. 🙂
Click links below for details on my Thanksgiving table picks. 🙂
For our family, Summer 2020 has become The Year of the Patio. Any socializing we have done, even with family, has been in our outdoor space to minimize the risk of covid infection for our son with Down Syndrome. In a lot of ways, its been a fun year of discovering the birds, plants, and animals that inhabit our backyard and the simple pleasures of the sunshine and fresh air. But now that the season is coming to an end, we, like many others, are wondering how we can maximize our time in our outdoor space and make it more usable into the fall.
Here are a few ways to make your deck, patio, or backyard space more functional in cooler weather so you can continue to get as much use out of it as possible.
Upgrade outdoor lighting.
As the days grow shorter and shorter, I’ve enjoyed all the lighting we have on our patio. We have two sets of vintage-style string lights running along the pergola and amber glass lanterns in the garden and along the house. All this lighting provides enough illumination to comfortably socialize even when night falls. Candle lanterns are a great alternative for portable lighting.
2. Add an outdoor heat feature
Consider adding a source of heat to your outdoor space. This could be extremely simple, like a firepit built from landscape stones, or it could be extremely elaborate, like a whole outdoor fireplace. A nice cozy, warm spot will extend your backyard usability into the autumn months. Right now, we have a small portable firepit that gives us a little extra warmth on a chilly night. A fire table with a seating area would be a terrific addition!
3. Add comfortable furniture
An outdoor sofa with plenty of space offers lots of options for outdoor enjoyment. This patio features an outdoor coffee table to enjoy a hot beverage and snack or just put your feet up and enjoy nature.
4. Add a great outdoor cooking option
When you have a terrific outdoor cooking area, spending time out in the fresh air into the fall months is a lot more fun. Imagine taking a few steps outside your back door and cooking up something delicious on an outdoor griddle! My young adult kids recently purchased this amazing Cuisinart grill and have been raving about it ever since!
I’m seeing amazing hanging floral orbs everywhere these days, from stylish front porches to glamorous wedding receptions. What a unique, eye-catching, and beautiful way to display your greenery and flower arrangements at your event or in your home!
These hanging decorations can be used in any way your imagination can think up. In fact, the floral orb that inspired my design was a fall decoration containing mini-pumpkins and eucalyptus. The great thing about these is everything is attached to a piece of floral foam, and everything can be re-done again and again. I plan to use my decorative orbs as a seasonal decoration, with fall flowers right now, pine boughs at Christmas, and so on.
For an added dimension, I think it would be amazing to add wired fairy lights, and I’m going to give that a try at Christmastime.
These floral orbs make fantastic wedding decor also. The DIY project is easy on your budget too!
Thanks for checking out my tutorial today! Use coupon code TAKE25 to receive $25 off your order of $200 or more at Kate Aspen!
Okay, if you’re ready to give these gorgeous decorations a try, let’s get to it!
Post contains affiliate links. Please see about page for full info. 🙂
Here’s how you build the orbs. We made one large 18 inch orb and a smaller 10 inch orb using the plant stakes.
Step 1: Disassemble the rings and stakes from each other. Depending on how your stakes are put together, it can be a bit of a brain-teaser getting them apart, but they are separate pieces.
Step 2: Cut 2 24 inch segments of your 16 gauge wire
Step 3: Taking the four large rings from the plant stakes, put them together so they form an orb with equidistant segments, like an orange.
Step 4: Holding your rings steady in the way you would like them to be for the finished product, pick up a piece of wire. Fasten one end of the wire onto the hoops by wrapping it on with the pliers. . Use your pliers to take the wire up through segment 1 and down through segment 5 (see diagram). Weave the wire up through segment 6 and down through 2, up through 3 and down through 7, up through 8 and down through 4.
Step 5: Wrap the wire around the bottom, and tuck in any sharp edges with the pliers. Repeat the same weaving process with the second piece of wire at the other end of the orb.
NOTE: We made the smaller orb using the garden stakes that came with the hoops. They needed to be bent into a circular form first.
Step 6: Spray paint the entire orb. I painted mine with a coat of light pink and a very light coat of copper over top. This gave the orb a rose-gold to copper look. You could pick whatever color goes with your event or look.
Step 7: Cut off a piece of floral foam from your block. I used ¾ of a block for the large orb and ¼ for the small orb.
Step 8: Attach the piece of foam to the bottom inside of the orb using 10 greening pins. Hold the foam in place and poke the pins up from the bottom, making sure to anchor the foam to the orb frame.The advantage to attaching the foam this way instead of gluing is that you can remove the foam easily to replace it or to use the orb for something else, like lighting it up with fairy lights.
Step 9: Attach the rope for hanging. Our larger orb started with 3 feet of rope. I love the natural rope with the rosy metal. It gives the project a nice warm feel that’s really on-trend right now. We did an eye splice on both ends of our three-strand rope to give the rope a hanger and a decorative touch. You can see how to do that here, or you could hang the orb by simply knotting the rope to the top. I tied the looped rope to the orb using a tiny sheer bow.
Step 10: Using a hot glue gun, glue Spanish moss over top of the floral foam to cover it.
Step 11: Add floral elements. I started with a base of seeded eucalyptus and left some drape down. I added cream color roses for a simple and elegant display.
The orbs look great in so many different ways. I had fun playing around with a few different elements and created a pink and burgundy look. The flowers used in this arrangement are sweetheart roses, hydrangea, and sedum.
It’s hard to believe these flowery orbs started out as tomato stakes!
I hope you’ll give this a try and post a photo!
Thanks for checking out my blog today! Use coupon code TAKE25 to receive $25 off your order of $200 or more at Kate Aspen!
Have a beautiful day, and try something creative 🙂