June 22, 2018

Summer Home Tour 2018

Thanks for coming to tour my home with my Summer decorations
(finally) displayed. I've made and painted many of the items so I
will include highlighted text that takes you to the tutorials so you
can make similar items for your home if you would like.
summer bottle decorating

We're friends so come on in the back entrance.
As you enter the carport area there is a baker's rack with
my blue bottle collection topped with shells.
Summer decorating ideas

Just a dot of hot glue holds the shell on the bottle's opening
then it is easy to pop off at the end of Summer. 
summer decorating

The back door area has more shells.
using shells as summer decor

New galvanized olive buckets have been painted to look
old (tutorial here). I'm pretending that the buckets are holding
burlap bags full of shells from the ocean. 
summer decorating

In reality, most of the bucket is full of crumpled newspaper and
plastic bags. The burlap is hiding the stuffing so you can't see
it through the holes. Then only the very top layer is shells. 
DIY summer decor

The basket hanging on the back door has shells in it too.
easy DIY summer wreath

To fool the eye, a piece of foam core was cut to fit the basket
then wrapped in burlap to hide it through the basket's weave.
Then shells were hot glued on to the top edge of the foam core.
DIY door decor

Come on in to the kitchen dining area.
inexpensive summer decorating

I just love me some shells. Most of them have come from
the bags you can buy at the craft stores (and use a coupon to
get them for even less).
easy summer decorating

how to decorate with shells

Now we will move from the kitchen dining area to the more 
formal dining area. If we had come in the house through the
front door, this room also acts like a foyer too.
summer dining room ideas
(I moved one of the chairs so you could see the table better)

A large urn holds shells and has shells hot glued on it.

I got tired of all the dark wood furniture in this room and got
up enough nerve to paint this dresser/display piece with
two shades of chalk paint (for tutorial click here).

It is an older piece with wavy glass so I'm going to open the
doors so you can see part of my coral and sea fan collection better. 
(Excuse the mess in the bottom)

The wave coral reproduction came from Target. 
The faux corals were made from items in the floral section
of craft stores (coral tutorial here). The faux sea fans were
made from cedar clippings (sea fan tutorial here). 

Also in the dining room/foyer is a buffet.

For summer it has a shell motif also.

My "beach boy" stands on a skirted pedestal between the dining
room and the living room. I found this funky "ribbon" at 
Hobby Lobby. It reminded me of a fishing net.

The last room on the tour is the living room. 

The coffee table holds a bowl of pretty Summer items.

I like to change out these pillow coverings seasonally.
For Summer I fell in love with this octopus print fabric.

I also like to change out the picture over the mantel seasonally.

It is not expensive to have different artwork during the year
because I just get art prints and use a technique to make them
look similar to a painting (from print to painting tutorial here).

The wood pilings on the end of the mantel are actually pool
noodles wrapped in wood-look contact paper. A diluted coat of
paint gives them that whitewashed look.

Bookcases on either side of the mantel hold more Summer items.

The seahorse, faux turtle shell and octopus on this bookcase
were not colors that I liked. I painted them with a DIY chalk

I used the more colorful items in the double bookcase.

The buoys on the top shelf had a color change to make them
look older (tutorial here). I've tried several times to make glass
fishing floats. To me they never look as good as the ones you 
can purchase in stores but I use them anyway.

Buoys, mirror, shell vase all painted with DIY chalk paint.

This mirrored console holds our radio and CD player.

Over the console are two frames with chicken wire that
are easy to change seasonally. (framed chicken wire tutorial).
These are two Summer sayings that I like:

I tried to make these saying boards look similar to the pilings
on the mantel so I covered foam board with the wood-look
contact paper to write on. I might have used too much water to
dilute the paint (to give it a whitewashed look) but then I 
liked the way it beaded up on the contact paper so I left it. 

Thanks again for visiting!!!
Here's a good "pinnable" image if you want to come again.

April 8, 2018

Use Bottles As Vases

Use Bottles As Vases
How to repurpose a bottle into being a vase

If there are times that you need more vases than you have, use bottles as vases. 
Bottles usually have thin necks and are easy to arrange flowers in. 
The BIG plus to using bottles as vases is that 
they can be very low cost or even free. 

To decorate my house for Spring this year I wanted to use lots of
flowers but I don't have an unlimited amount of vases. 
I found clear bottles that I could take the labels off of and use them as vases. 
In the photo above the two center containers are vases and the 
other containers are bottles. 

Here is my living room decorated for Spring...
Spring decorating ideas

Spring arrangements with artificial branches
On the mantel I used vases (that don't match exactly but are
 close in size and color) to hold artificial Spring branches.

Spring arrangement

I add water to the vases to advance the idea that the branches 
are real. Most of the time the branches have plastic stems. If they
are wrapped in paper, oh well, I may be painting those stems later.
Spring arrangement

The picture between the vases is made from a print with artist
gel medium applied to it to make it look like a painting. I like that
it bridges the feel of Winter (bare birch) and Spring (green grass).

The mantel has a single bookcase to the left...
artificial flowers with real greenery

bookcase shelf ideas

...and a double bookcase to the right...
Interesting bookcase arrangment

Spring vignette ideas

A trick that I like to use is to cut the (usually not real looking) greenery off 
of artificial flowers and use real greenery instead.
It really helps to fool the eye of the beholder. 

On the side of the living room that the double bookcase is on
there is a sofa that sits in front of the bank of three windows.
bird stencil

Usually I make my own pillow covers to save money like these
ones with birds stenciled on them. I saw the solid colored green
pillows with beige fringe on them at a nearby "At Home" store
for only $16 recently...I thought that was a good price. 

simple coffee table arrangment
With so many flowers in the room already, I kept the frog containers on the coffee table simple with faux succulents. 

Across the room from the sofa is a cabinet that houses our
 radio and CD player. 
It was almost black with age at a flea market
before we painted the base of it. 
My husband revived the wooden top. 
bottles can be used as vases

In Spring everything is full of promise

The only flowers that are real on this piece are the white spirea.
They are in a re-purposed Crown Royal bottle. The flowers on 
each end are in re-purposed champagne bottles. 

Bourbon bottle as a vase

chicken wire frame

The frames above the painted cabinet have chicken wire stapled to
 the backside. That makes it easy to change out the decor items on  the frames seasonally. Right now there are faux wooden signs there. 

Benjamin Moore Georgian Green

I usually don't show this angle of the living room (because who wants to look at a 
hulking TV cabinet) but it gives  you a better 
idea of the layout of my home. 
To the left of the cabinet (where the black dinette set is)
 is the kitchen area. 
To the right of the cabinet
(where you see terracotta lamps) is the dining room area. 

Recently the dining room table utilized bottles as vases for
St. Patrick's Day decor. Sadly the spirea has withered and the
table is now being used for various craft projects. 
Use bottles as vases

The table in the kitchen, however, still has a display of a mix of
artificial and real flowers and greenery.  
bottles used as vases

Spring vase arrangement

Clear glass bottles are a good substitute for traditional glass vases 
but they can be a little harder to come by. 
If you don't mind painting bottles to use as vases,
 you don't have to be as picky.
Painted bottles are fun to use as party or wedding centerpieces. 
use bottles as centerpieces

Colored glass bottles are easier to find. Even if you don't drink
wine or beer, you might know friends or family that do and they
would probably be glad to save bottles for you. 

It is easy to soak the bottles to get the labels off. Here is a tutorial
easy way to get label off bottles

For a Mexican-themed party I helped with we spray painted the
cleaned bottles with bright colors. 
spraypaint bottles

spray painting bottles

We put colorful tissue paper flowers in the painted bottles. 
paper flowers as party decorations

If you want to, it is also easy to make the bottles two-tone colored
by using tape and paper to mask off part of the painted bottle
and spray it with a second color. 
two tones bottles

party centerpiece idea

You can also use the bottles to hold water and keep flowers and
greenery fresh for a party or wedding. These bottles are bright
colors but bottles can be made to look more elegant by painting 
them silver or gold for a more formal event. 
cheap party decoration

painted bottles as centerpieces

So the next time you need more vases than you have, think
about using bottles as vases too. 
Bottles make good vases

I am sharing this post over at
Inspire Me Tuesday blog party @ A Stroll Thru Life
Tip Me Tuesday @ Tip Junkie

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