Blooming Botanical Downloads For Your Home

Spring is just around the corner and we’re excited to get your home in tiptop shape for the new season. To welcome Spring, we’ve created these vintage inspired botanical downloads to add some new life into your home. If you’re looking for a quick and inexpensive way to decorate those empty wall spaces, or the shelves that might be bare, these botanical prints are a charming accent for any space. Hang all three or just hang one but we promise these fun and fresh botanical designs will enhance those bleak areas. If you’re feeling intimidated about hanging these new prints in your home, we have just the resource to build your confidence: How To Level and Hang Art. Be bold and bring in some color and light to your home with these gorgeous botanical downloads.

A Grape Hyacinth free download.

Grape Hyacinth – a Spring garden’s delight with Farmhouse appeal. Download “Muscari armeniacum.”

scientific anenome (2)

Grape Leaf Anemone – a robust bloom to boost the energy in your home. Download “Tomentosa Robustissima.”

Fernleaf yarrow free printable download.

Fernleaf Yarrow – an enchanting golden bloom to promote happiness. Download “Achillea Filipendulina.”

Candle Burning Tips: How to Burn Pillar Candles

If you love to keep a candle burning in your home, but always worry about dripping wax, burning down your candle too fast, or air pollution, you might be doing it wrong! Many people simply light candles and then let them be. Did you know there is a proper way to burn candles to ensure that your candle keeps its original form and levels out evenly as it flickers as well as maintaining a clean burn that doesn’t pollute your indoor air?

Furniture Row now sells the sweet-smelling, pillar-shaped Vela Candles in an assortment of scents and colors, so the Front Door wants to make sure that your candle burning experience is as enjoyable as possible. We consulted an innovative local candle company in Denver called Lola’s Secret Candles to share some expert tips with us on how to get the best burn out of your candle. Read these easy tips to make sure you burn your pillar candle right.

candle-burning-guide

How to Properly Burn a Pillar Candle

Tips:

  • Do not burn your pillar candle in any glass or container. Use a regular candleholder so that the candle can stand on its own, but still have something underneath it to catch wax drippings or support it in case it gets bumped.
  • Burn it in a level place away from fans, windows, or other drafts in order to keep it burning evenly. If it is placed in drafty conditions, it can begin to burn unevenly or even start to tunnel.
  • Trim the wick to ¼ inch before each burn. If the wick is too long, it can start to release soot into the air while it burns. Most candlewicks are originally generous in size, but a longer wick doesn’t mean the candle will burn longer.
  • The first time you burn your candle, leave it lit long enough so that a wax pool forms across the majority of the top portion of the candle. This is called a full pool. Let your candle flicker one hour for every inch in diameter, so if your pillar candle has a four-inch diameter, let it burn for four hours when you first light it. This prevents tunneling.
  • Hug in the edges of the pillar candle at the end of each burn by cupping your hands to fold the wax inwards. This will help avoid candle tunneling and allow the excess wax on the edges to be burned along with the center. Tunneling will cause your candle to not last as long.
  • Voila! Your pillar candle will flicker for as long as possible without polluting your indoor air. Enjoy!

 

How to Level and Hang Art on a Wall

Nothing brightens up a blank wall like a colorful framed print or canvas, so start decorating your space and hang art! Taking a hammer and nails to your wall might be a little intimidating, but avoid the headache of figuring out whether your art is hung straight with these easy tips to making sure that frame looks just right on your wall. Hang art without worry with these simple steps!

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Materials

For this project, you will need:

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Types of Hangers

Depending on what size and how heavy your frame is, the type of hanger you use to hang art may vary. Before hanging, search your wall for a stud (wood support) by knocking on it or by using a stud finder. If you hear a solid sound when you knock, this means that a stud is located behind the wall and that you will have extra support for your frame. For heavier frames, you may want to have a stud and use two or more traditional metal picture hangers depending on the frame size. If you cannot find a stud, a plastic anchor and screw or a butterfly screw are good hanger alternatives.

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Let’s Get Started!

1. Using a tape measure, measure the height of your frame and divide that number in half. The height of our frame was 24 inches, so we ended with 12 inches.

2. On the back of your frame, measure from the top frame wire to the top of the frame. We measured 5 inches.

3. Take that distance and subtract it from the half measurement in step 1 (12 – 5 = 7).

4. Typically, eye level height is 60 inches from the ground. Add the number from step 3 to 60 (67 inches). Measure that height from the ground with your tape measure and use a pencil to mark the spot.

5. Hang your frame on the spot you marked using the appropriate hanger(s).

6. Use a leveler to make sure your frame is straight.

7. Enjoy your art on the wall, and make your space your own!

Crowd Pleaser Sausage and Spinach Ravioli Recipe

I’m Jessa, the Art Director for the Front Door. I wanted to share a recipe with you that I made when family friends visited last week (This recipe serves 6.). I call this Crowd Pleaser Sausage and Spinach Ravioli because it has a little something for everyone. I really love spinach ricotta ravioli, while my boyfriend is a meat lover and wanted to make sausage ravioli. Instead of making multiple fillings, we decided to combine all of the ingredients we love into one deliciously flavorful filling.

sausage-spin-ravioli-title

Crowd Pleaser Sausage and Spinach Ravioli Ingredients

Filling

  • 1 lb Bulk Italian Sausage
  • 2 cup packed spinach leaves
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 1 cup ricotta cheese
  • ½ tablespoon grated nutmeg

Dough

  • 9 cups unbleached all purposed flour
  • 7 eggs
  • 3 tsp olive oil
  • 1½ teaspoon salt

Crowd Pleaser Sausage and Spinach Ravioli Instructions

Filling

1. Saute sausage in pan until cooked through.

2. Wilt spinach into cooked sausage.

sausage-and-wilted-spinach

3. Drain off excess fat.

4. Put spinach and sausage mixture in food processor or blender, and pulse until minced into small pieces.

sausage-food-processed

5. Combine ricotta, parmesan, Nutmeg, egg yolk, and sausage mixture in a mixing bowl.

6. Cover and refrigerate until the filling is needed. If you have the time to refrigerate the filling for a couple of hours, it will firm up and be easier to handle when stuffing the ravioli.

Dough

1. Put 3 cups of flour on a cutting board. Make a mound and make a deep well in the mound. NOTE: I prefer to more flour than is usual to create a deeper well where the eggs don’t run out the sides. I find this makes things easier for a newbie dough maker. There will be excess flour but I just use this to contribute to the next dough ball.

2. Crack two eggs into the well, and add salt and olive oil to the well.

flour-well

3. Start slowly bringing in flower from the edges of the well into the well and gently mix with eggs.

4. Repeat this until the mixture starts to resemble sticky dough and there are no visible runny eggs.

5. Pick the sticky dough up with hands, add flour to keep it from sticking too much, and begin kneading.

6. Keep adding flour from the pile, and continue to knead for about 6 minutes. NOTE: To knead the dough, repeatedly squeeze dough between hands, occasionally pulling apart and compressing back together into a ball. The dough is ready once it starts to expand on its own after being compressed.

kneading dough

7. Rub the kneaded dough with a teaspoon of olive oil. Place in a bag, Tupperware, or covered bowl in the fridge for 30 minutes.

8. Repeat steps 1-7 to create two more dough balls.

Adding Filling to the Dough

1.To roll the dough out, cover wooden cutting board, counter, or pastry sheet with flour, and roll refrigerated dough ball in flour.

floured dough

2. Cut the dough ball into 4 even pieces and roll  to make the rolling more manageable on a small surface (you can see here I already started rolling one of the pieces).

cut dough

3. Roll out each 1/4th ball of dough into a thin sheet with rolling pin, and add flour to pin as needed to keep it from sticking to the dough.

4. Place a small dollop of filling in a line on the dough leaving about a ½ inch between each pile of filling.

5. Brush the dough around the immediate outer edges of the filling with egg wash (1 egg + a splash of water whisked together).

ravioli-stuffing

6. Fold dough over the filling or lay another rolled out layer of dough on top of the first layer of dough.

7. Press down the dough that is immediately surrounding the filling to stick it together.

raviolipockets01

8. Cut out squares with a pizza cutter or crimped pastry cutter.

9. Repeat with remaining dough balls and filling.

Bringing it all together

1. Add formed ravioli to a boiling pot of water. Once they begin to float, they are ready to be removed from water pot.

2. Scoop them up with a slotted spoon and place them in a bowl topped with tomato sauce and shaved parmesan cheese.

ravioli-final

For me, this would definitely not be an “on a whim” dinner, but it was a project I had a lot of fun with, and it was a definite crowd pleaser!

Download The Printable Recipe Now!.
crowd-pleaser-ravioli-front-door-blog

 

Melt and Pour Soap: Layered Lavender and Tea Tree Oil Soap

I’m Rose, an Art Contributor at the Front Door. Today I want to share my melt and pour soap recipe using my doTerra essential oils for a 3 layered soap! We use soap every day. But sometimes we aren’t exactly sure what’s in the ingredients list. There is something empowering about knowing exactly what you’re putting on your body on a daily basis. Melt and pour soap is also very cost effective for the household. It’s an extremely easy DIY and you can customize your ingredients for your health and fragrance preferences.

melt and pour soap

Supplies for Melt and Pour Soap

  • wood soap box
  • soap cutter
  • 2 lb. clear soap base
  • 2 lb. goats milk soap base
  • 2 lb. shea butter soap base
  • essential oil(s) of choice
  • poppy seeds
  • dried calendula leaves
  • dried lavender leaves
  • double boiler (or glass baking bowl and regular boiling pot)
  • thermometer
  • stir stick
  • freezer paper

doterra-soap

Instructions for Melt and Pour Soap

  1. Chop the bases into 1 inch thick pieces, keeping the bases separate from each other.
  2. Place the chopped soap base pieces in the double boiler or in the glass bowls floating in a pot of water. Turn on medium heat and let each base melt completely. The goat milk will take the longest to melt.
  3. While the soap is heating up, line your soap box with freezer paper. Here is a good video on how to line a standard soap box.
  4. Once the soap is melted, pour the first base (I used shea as my bottom layer.). Mix in 6-10 drops of your essential oils (I used lavender.) and the dried goods you wish to add.
  5. Let the soap cool and keep your other 2 bases on low heat.
  6. Once the bottom layer is partially cooled, add the second layer. I used the clear base for the second layer and added the calendula laves/melaleuca oil.
  7. Let the second layer cool partially and repeat the process for your top layer. I used lavender, poppy seeds, and dried lavender for the top layer.
  8. Let the soap cool completely (can take up to 24 hours).
  9. Cut your soap using your soap cutter and enjoy!

Color Wheel Basics: How to Pick Color Schemes for the Home

Decorating your home is no easy feat, and when it comes to choosing paint colors, it can already be hard enough to pick and choose which hues work for you. There are so many different shades, so how it possible to narrow down which ones go great with your furniture and unique design style? The Front Door is here to help! No matter what color you want to start with, there’s a color scheme that will help you figure out that wall color and matching accents to help pull the room together. Stick to this color coordination guide using hues from the color wheel and you can’t go wrong. These are scientifically proven to be eye-catching, so you won’t have to worry about mismatching. Say goodbye to neutrals, and open up your horizons to the world of color!

The Main Color Schemes

It might be a refresher, but before we get started, here’s a recap of the basic color wheel.

color-wheel

The Primary Colors

When you think of the primary colors, memories of learning about red, blue, and yellow from kindergarten come to mind, and you’re not wrong. These are the main hues on the color wheel we need in order to create any other color, so these basic colors are a great foundation for any room. Whether you want to work in a bright red or introduce a calming blue, using a primary color can boost your room’s energy and guarantee that it will be attractive to all.

The Secondary Colors

When we mix two of the primary colors on the color wheel, we get secondary colors. Orange, green, and violet are the next basic colors on the list and they are great for complementing or contrasting the primary colors.

The Tertiary Colors

Last but not least, the tertiary colors are created when we mix secondary and primary colors. There are six tertiary colors that finish the color wheel and create a diverse range of rainbow hues to work with when decorating your home.

Now that you know the basics, take a look at the common color schemes below and design your room like a pro!

Analogous

analagous-colors

For the first color scheme on our list, simply use colors that are next to each other on the color wheel. They usually match well and create an easy design that looks neat and comforting. Analogous color schemes are harmonious and organically aesthetic since you can find them most often in nature. Choosing three to five analogous colors creates a diverse range in hues that can work from a red-orange to deep violet or from sunny yellow to a calming teal blue. No matter what color you start with, decide which direction you want to go, and there are endless possibilities!

For our analogous room, we started with dark indigo and added hues to get to a vivacious lime green for an eclectic cool-colored scheme! The dark blue Aria 3 Pc. Sectional and Aria Ottoman included patterned accent pillows with various shades of green and blue that matched the Aria Accent Chair, creating an easy start to using this analogous scheme. For other matching accents, we added the Dawn Discovery I and II Canvases and a green Torino Ombre Rug to complete the cool-toned room and painted an accent wall pale blue to create some light balance.

Other items shown: Facet Table Lamp, Facet Accent Lamp, Pass Through Vases
For more analogous color scheme items, add the: Narrow Bottle Vase and Taj Candleholders.

Complementary

complementary-colors

Next on the list, the complementary color scheme simply utilizes pairs of colors which, when combined, cancel each other out to create a blackish or whitish gray since they are exact opposites on the color wheel. The basic complementary color pairings are red and green, blue and orange, and yellow and violet. Using a complementary color scheme from the color wheel is fun and easy to use in the home to create a natural balance between a cool color and a warm color for some eye-catching results.

For our complementary room, we chose a child’s bedroom to explore the beautiful combination of bright yellow and various shades of violet. The walls are a lovely shade of lilac that is naturally feminine and sweet while the yellow comforter brings out some sunny personality to give the room a little more brightness.

Items shown: Chloe Bedroom Furniture, Harlow Crystal Lamps
For more complementary color scheme items, add the: Beach Princess Kids Twin Comforter Set, Graphic Storage Basket, and Sense Shag Rug (Plum).

Monochromatic

monochromatic-colors

To keep your color scheme really simple, how about you just use one hue? Sound scary? It might be, but a monochromatic color scheme can look elegant if you have a lot of pieces in the same color and can’t quite seem to get enough of it. Monochromatic colors are all the colors (shades, tones, and tints) of a single hue that are created by simply adding white, gray, or black to make it lighter or darker.

For our monochromatic room, we used a rich navy blue to decorate a dining room. Beautiful Sapa runners with intricate patterning in denim tones hang regally from the wall adjacent to bold framed blue prints while the same runner drapes the table beneath various blue-toned Oki Candleholders. For the finishing touch, the blue patterned rug exhibits both light and dark shades of navy in an exquisite floral print.

Other items shown: Urban Loft 5 Pc. Dining Group, Urban Loft Server
For more monochromatic color scheme items, add the: Magnolia Home Emmie Kay Navy Rug, Watery Stripe Vase, and Painted Puzzle Canvas.

Split-Complementary

split-complementary-colors

If you want to spice up a room and prove your color coordinating trendsetter skills, step your design guru skills up a notch with a split-complementary color scheme. The split-complementary color scheme uses a base color of your choice with the two colors adjacent to its complementary hue. This color scheme has the same striking contrast as the regular complementary color scheme, but has less tension.

For our split-complementary room, we used a refreshing teal blue for the base color with its split-complementary hues of mustard yellow and burnt orange. To illuminate the yellow, we also added metallic gold accent pieces for more flair. For the teal blue base, the Eden Settee and Hilton Accent Chair match the Oki Candleholders and Vases prominently on display while the Teal Woods Gold Foil Lacquer Print in the background combines the same teal with the mustard yellow also found on the Seneca Pillow.

The golden Linden Coffee Table and Sofa Table matches the mustard yellow and helps incorporate the metallic shade of the burnt orange found in the Adelle Table Lamp and Facet Ceramic Side Table. For the finishing touch, the rustic orange also beautifully mixes with the teal turquoise on the Rainbow Paper Vase.

Triadic

triad-colors

Last but not least, you might want to use the triadic color scheme. A triadic color scheme uses colors that are spaced evenly around the color wheel. This color combination tends to be pretty vibrant even if you use unsaturated hues and is great for exploring diverse shades that work great together.

For our triadic room, we used the primary colors for our color scheme! Sophisticated shades of red, yellow, and blue are great for brightening up any space in the home, so we used them in the dining room. The Folk Tile Rug mixes these colors in unsaturated tones in a unique block pattern while blue placemats on the table and red flowers on the fireplace match well with the yellowish wood tone of the Oxford Dining Table.

Items shown: Cottage Side Chairs
For more triadic color scheme items, add the: Vin French Framed Print, Oldsmar Bench, Pierced Lantern Vase (Tomato Red), and Souk Vases.

Cheers Banner – Printable Decor for Your Holiday Cocktail Party

It’s the most wonderful time of the year, and what better way to celebrate the season than with a festive holiday cocktail party? If you are getting together with loved ones, you’ll want to make your home feel merry and bright. One easy way to do this is with a simple printable DIY project. This downloadable cheers banner is sure to get everyone in the spirit!

cheers-banner

This adorable cheers banner has sophisticated textures that look great with ivory and gold accents as pictured above with shiny gold ribbon or below with polka dot ribbon. You can string it along a buffet table or bar serving drinks, or along your mantle above a crackling fire. No matter where you put it, your guest will be saying, “Bottoms up!”holiday-cocktail-party-decor


GET THE LOOK: Octogan Industrial Server, Paige Accent Table, Facet Accent Lamp, Facet Table Lamp, Livorno Gathering Table, Magnolia Home Emmie Kay Dove Persimmon Rug, Danvari Tall Cabinet, Hanging Tree Illumination Canvas, Apothecary Large Cabinet, Retro Barstool


How to Make a Cheers Banner

  1. Simply download and print out this free five page printable on plain, white 8×11 paper, or you can use cardstock for a sturdier cheers banner.
  2. Cut out the triangles along the lines.
  3. Make slits or holes in the dotted circles for the ribbon.
  4. String ribbon or string through each of the holes.
  5. Tie bows on each of the ends (optional).
  6. Secure to desired location.

With this easy printable DIY cheers banner, you’ll have your home singing carols!

For more festive holiday cocktail party decorating ideas, click here.

Printable Christmas Place Name Cards for the Table

As you are setting your holiday table in preparation for your dining guests, you may want to assign seats to achieve the most harmonious gathering possible. Furniture Row has designed these adorable printable Christmas place name cards that you simply can print out, cut, write the name of each family member or friend on the front, fold, and set out on your table.

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These printable Christmas place name cards feature a sweet holiday wreath on the front, and a touching quote from one of America’s most iconic Christmas movies, A Charlie Brown Christmas.

“It’s not what under the Christmas tree that matters. It’s who’s around it.”
– Charlie Brown

It’s easy to print these out and place them on each plate, or get creative and prop them on bedazzled pinecones. Another cute idea is to glue tiny red bows on each of the wreaths to give the printable Christmas name place cards some dimension. You can also use stencils or stickers to spell out each name for uniformity.

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For a personal touch, write a holiday message to each person sitting around your table in the middle of each of the name place holders to create mini Christmas cards. Tell your family and friends how special they are by sharing a favorite memory or why you are thankful to have them in your life.

These printable Christmas place name cards aren’t just for seating. You can use these on your buffet to label dishes for guests. This is especially helpful for family and friends that may have allergies or special diets.

Download these printable Christmas place name cards now.

 

Festive Decoration Ideas for a Holiday Cocktail Party

Spread the holiday cheer getting ready for your guests with a holiday cocktail party! Furniture Row features the latest trends in design and decor with hot new products this season, so turn the merriment up a notch with some of our favorite festive picks and be inspired to create a party space that’s all your own with these festive decorations. Rustic meets a touch of seasonal sparkle with distressed wood, industrial metal, and chic gold accents.

holiday-cocktail-party-decor

Multiple Serving Stations

The main purpose of a holiday cocktail party is to have your guest mingle over delicious food and drinks! One way to encourage guests to chat is to have several serving stations instead of a long buffet line. If you separate food and snacks and have multiple places to enjoy their cocktails and bites, conversation will happen more naturally.

In this room, we have the main hors d’oeuvres at the large Livorno Gathering Table that features a recycled fir plank tabletop and a crossbeam metal base. We have the dishware and napkins on the Octagon Industrial Server, which offers eclectic, geometric elegance at bar height. Finally, the Apothecary Large Cabinet holds a splay of cocktails and boasts a whitewash finish for rustic charm. Retro Barstools are easy to move to accommodate guests that may want to sit at a different gathering places.

Ambient Lighting

Create a cheerful, festive mood at your holiday cocktail party with ambient lighting. Candles make the room feel warm and homey, and they often come in scents perfect for this time of year such as cinnamon, evergreen, and clove. Another way to illuminate the space is through Christmas lights. Not just for the outside anymore, drape simple strings of clear lights over branches in a vase or on your fireplace mantle.

For the perfect finishing touch, base lamps like the Facet Accent Lamp and Facet Table Lamp add festive holiday lighting and shimmer in metallic gold. We’ve placed one of the lamps up high for maximum illumination on top of the Paige Accent Table.

Easy DIY Decorations

You don’t have to go all out and buy new Christmas decorations to make the room feel festive at your holiday cocktail party. We’ve created a CHEERS banner from parchment paper and ribbon and strung it over the bar to invite our guests to enjoy a drink. Use our free download and learn how to make it here!

To make items that you currently have more holiday-esque, think outside the box and tie glittery wire ribbon around a vase or drape gold ribbon off a tabletop.

You can also take advantage of those extra ornaments and place them in a bowl as a centerpiece. This decoration can also double as a party favor holder, as you can invite guests to take an ornament from the bowl as they leave. This is a great way to spread holiday cheer without buying extra items you don’t need.

Protect Your Home From Holiday Spills and Traffic

Chances are that you are going to run into traffic and potential spills at your holiday cocktail party. Protect your floors from scuffs with an area rug such as the soft persimmon and gray colored Emmie Kay Dove Rug from Magnolia Home that is inspired by Scandinavian knit sweaters.

Keep your expensive glassware hidden away in a storage piece such as the Danvari Tall Cabinet that can store your nice china behind its paned metal doors. Use less expensive glasses for your holiday cocktail party guests, so you won’t be too heartbroken if one breaks.

Color Scheme

You don’t have to stick to the cliché, super Christmas-y red and green decor theme. In this room, we used cream and gold accents with our space’s current neutral palette for an ultra holiday feel. The best part is that you can still use these decorations after the holidays are over! The hanging Tree Illumination Canvas made of elegant brushstrokes of gray and beige fits in perfectly with the items we chose.

Feel free to play with colors that will go with your post-holiday decor. Just be sure to play with metallics and sparkle! Some of our other favorite holiday cocktail party color schemes are blue and silver, dusty pink and rose gold, and layered greens with glittery tweed and burlap accents.

Treat your guests to a festive holiday cocktail party this season in style!

All Year Cleaning List

The “All Year Cleaning List” has arrived at the Front Door. Keeping your home clean all year can be daunting and sometimes a little confusing. Some tasks need to be done everyday, while others can be done once a season. We’ve created an easy guide to follow daily, weekly, monthly, and seasonally. We’ve found keeping this guide up on the refrigerator is a nice reminder for the day’s tasks. If you want to kick it up a notch, use a clear sleeve to hold this guide and mark off what you do each day with a dry erase marker.

cleaning-list

 

Daily 

  • Make the beds
  • Wipe down the countertops
  • Take out full trash
  • Declutter common surfaces
  • Clean any dishes

Weekly

  • Wash and fold laundry
  • Vacuum and sweep floors in most used areas
  • Dust surfaces
  • Wash sheets and towels
  • Scrub bathroom and towels
  • Scrub bathroom sinks, surfaces and toilets
  • Clean Mirrors
  • Wipe down the fronts of appliances

Monthly

  • Wipe down inside cabinets
  • Clean inside stove and microwave
  • Wipe down cabinet fronts
  • Clean showers and tubs
  • Dust ceiling fans and molding

Seasonally

  • Dust and clean windows and blinds
  • Dust baseboards
  • Clear our expired foods
  • Air out rooms in the house
  • Wash and air out comforters and quilts
  • Vacuum and sweep under furniture

Download Cleaning List

Microwave Peppermint Bark

The holiday season is here, and so are the tasty treats it brings. A classic Christmas flavor combo, chocolate peppermint bark is an easy, no-bake sweet treat that’s great for gifting–and even better for snacking!  With a simple ingredient list, a little prep, and a microwave, you can transform basic chocolate and peppermint into a quintessentially Christmassy peppermint bark everyone will love! 
peppermint-bark1
Ingredients: 

12 ounces of white chocolate
16 ounces of semisweet chocolate
1/2 teaspoon of peppermint extract
Topping: 1/4 cup of chopped peppermint candy or candy canes

Utensils:

Measuring spoons and cups
Parchment paper
Baking sheet
2Microwave-friendly sized glass bowl for each flavor of chocolate
Spatula

How to make your own bark:

  1. Line your baking sheet with parchment
  2. Add white chocolate to a bowl and semisweet chocolate to the other
  3. Add a teaspoon of peppermint extract to each chocolate. for less peppermint, add to only one type of chocolate..
  4. Microwave the semisweet chocolate at 50% power for 90 seconds.
  5. Stir, and heat for another 30 seconds at 50%, stir until smooth. Repeat on 50% power as needed. DO NOT HEAT AT FULL POWER
  6. Pour melted semisweet chocolate onto baking sheet, smooth out.
  7. Repeat steps 2-5 with the white chocolate
  8. With a fork or a toothpick, swirl the two layers. Swirling allows the layers to combine, and makes the bark easier to cut later.
  9. Sprinkle with crushed peppermint topping
  10. Cool or chill for 30 minutes to one hour
  11. Cut, serve and enjoy!

November 2015 Calendar Download

November is right around the corner–and Autumn is in full swing. This month brings lots of fall festivities, the start of the holiday season–and a delicious bounty of tasty foods! Our Front Door original calendar download is inspired by the harvest season: It’s a colorful reminder of what we can be thankful for now, and year-round. Download is available in Mobile, Mac, and Desktop sizing. NOV-1920x1080

November Calendar 2015 1920×1080

November Calendar 2015 iPhone 5 

November Calendar 2015 iPhone 6 

November Calendar 2015 iPhone 6 Plus

November Calendar 2015 iPad

Lighting for Daylight Saving

This year Daylight Saving ends on Sunday, November 1. As the saying goes, we fall back one hour each Autumn, and while many relish the additional hour of sleep that follows, the extended darkness can be a downer. Before we let darker days get us down, lets plan to make our homes even brighter and cozier with a little design savvy.

Adding accent lamps throughout your house is a stylish way to combat the effects of Daylight Saving. From cheery table lamps to glamorous accent lighting, we’ve put together some fall favorites that beat back the darkness doldrums with their warm, inviting glow.

lighting-furniture-row

To get started, shop lamps that reflect your style, and meet your lighting needs. Lamps with 3-way switches allow you to control the lighting level, and can be adjusted for those dark fall hours. When choosing lamps, pieces that double as home accents will illuminate your space and style: Interesting base shapes, striking shades, colorful components, and one-of-a-kind designs can make all the difference during Daylight Saving, and year-round. Here are a few of our favorites:

  1. We LOVE the look of the Draper Table Lamp. Featuring mid-century style, this wrought iron lamp elegantly arcs and hangs to provide both ambient light, and the perfect amount of light for a cozy fall evening in!
  2. The Edison Table Lamp evokes the best of fall. With a warm copper accent on its base, and a natural round shade, the Edison combines organic elements with a touch of glam. Put this striking lamp on an end table next to a favorite chair, and cuddle up!
  3. Lamps come in all sizes and styles, and we love the cylindrical Quatrefoil Table Lamp. This column lamp gives off generous light, and adds visual interest to your space. Shed some light and a whole lot of style with this lamp on a hallway table, a sofa table, or anywhere you like!
  4. With a more traditional ceramic-inspired base, the Charlotte Lamp in Cream brings warm, rustic style along with ample lighting. Great on a nightstand or end table, the Charlotte is a versatile accent in any space needing some light.
  5. Wow! The Ogee Table Lamp is a light looker! The open, airy sculptural base is eye-catching and elegant. Put this lamp on your favorite table, a desk, or in a reading nook and let its light shine.
  6. The Riley Beige Table Lamp is the go-to lamp for any room or area needing some lighting. It is versatile, stylish, and brings a whole lot of style without being overpowering to your existing design.
  7. The Riley Orange Table Lamp has got to top our fall favorite list for its color! Bold orange screams the season, and the geometric shade adds a pop. Bright, lively, and fun, this chic lamp is sure to cheer any space up.
  8. Lamps are great on end and side tables, but when it comes to adding lighting to your space, it’s great to get creative! Using a piece like the Retro Barstool as a stand for a lamp is a fun, simple way to allow for more lighting in more ways.

 

DIY Halloween Pumpkins

It’s that frightfully fun time of year, which means ghoulishly festive DIY projects are in season. In the spooky spirit of Halloween, we carved pumpkins at the Front Door–and want to share with you a few tips for your own pumpkin party! Read on for instructions, and links to templates. Happy Halloween!

Pumpkin-Caludron

Boil and bubble, toil and trouble! This Creepy Cauldron template is a fun, wickedly wonderful carving idea!

Pumpkin-Owl

Hoo, me? This Ominous Owl template turned out to be a Halloween hoot…

Pumpkin-Kitty

Meow meow! This killer kitty is a fun, feline interpretation of the spooky season. Get the template here

          TO CARVE, YOU WILL NEED

  • Pumpkin
  • Carving kit, or preferred cutting tool
  • Template, if desired
  • Marker, if needed
  • Trash bag for pumpkin insides
  • Candle for illumination

          HOW TO PREP & CARVE

  1. The first step is to cut a lid in the pumpkin top, and gut the pumpkin. Be sure to cut at an angle so the lid does not fall into the pumpkin.
  2. Now, get in there and clean out the pumpkin guts! HINT: The cleaner the pumpkin, the longer your carved masterpiece will last.
  3. If you are using a stencil, tape it to your clean pumpkin. HINT: the more flush to the pumpkin the stencil is adhered, the easier it is to accurately trace it.
  4. After the stencil is fixed in place, use the dotting tool from your carving kit to puncture through the paper stencil onto the pumpkin. This will give you a dotted silhouette to cut along. You can also cut through the stencil if you are confident in your cutting skills :).
  5. Once you have your stencil traced onto pumpkin, use a cutting tool to cut out the design. Always supervise children with carving kit.

If you are not the template type, FREEHAND carving is the way to go!

Follow the above instructions for prepping your pumpkin. Then, draw your design with marker, and get carving!

Pumpkin-Face

This Front Door original Frightful Face captures the season–who says clowns aren’t scary? This Halloween one certainly is!

Pumpkin-House

Inspired by a Better Homes and Gardens, this Haunted House is hand-drawn and colored. HINT: This design is best done with black paint; we used marker–which worked–but is more time consuming! 

For more carving fun, don’t miss the Front Door original templates! If you’re not into carving, these no-carve pumpkin decorating ideas are a fun alternative!

To get in the Halloween spirit, check out this Front Door playlist of SPOOKY SONGS!

 

Home Décor by Numbers

When it comes to home décor, it can be tricky to know what goes where and why. To give you a little inspiration, we’ve put together a guide to home décor by numbers. It’s most important to style your space your way–and there are no rules when it comes to loving your home! Instead, treat these numbers as a helpful blueprint if you’re ever in a bind when creating your dream design.

Decor-By-Numbers

Furniture by Numbers: 

Furniture – 1 inch
Leaving some room between the back of furniture and the wall will protect fabric and prevent wall scuffs.

Sofas – 7 feet
To seat up to four people or one adult lying down, choose a sofa that is at least 7 feet in length.

Televisions – 8 feet
Placing a TV 8 feet away from the sofa provides optimal viewing.

Coffee Tables – 16 inches
Keep about 16 inches between the couch and the coffee table to leave room for legs.

Nightstands – 29 inches
A nightstand that is the height of the bed, about 29 inches, will look best and make it easier to reach for things.

Dining Chairs – 2 feet
Allow at least 2 feet between the back of dining chairs and the wall so you have enough space to pull out the chair and walk behind it.

Buffets & Servers – 18 inches
Buffets and servers that are 18 inches deep will give you enough room to fit wide plates and serving platters.

Accents by Numbers: 

Rugs – 12 inches
Leave at least 1 foot between area rugs and the walls of the room. This will make the space feel larger.

Lighting – 60 watts
For cozy lighting in the bedroom or living room, aim for 60 watt bulbs in nightstand or end table lamps.

Artwork – 62 – 66 inches
The center of wall art should be between 62″ and 66″ from the floor to be at eye level.

Throw Pillows – 5 pillows
Having more than 5 throw pillows on a standard size sofa will make it look too cluttered.

Colors – 1 + 2 accents
Focus on 1 main color and 2 accents colors per room. It’s okay to mix patterns as long as they share the same color story.

Frame Tray DIY

This DIY frame tray project lets you repurpose and reinvent items you have around the house to create something personalized and new. With just a frame, drawer pulls and hardware, and your favorite paper or photo, the frame transforms into a one-of-a-kind display tray! Special thanks to regional merchandiser Callie M. for the great idea, and photos of her own DIY frame project.

tray before and after

To create your own frame tray, you will need: 

  • 8″ x 10″ frame
  • Paper of choice for featured center
  • Hammer or pliers
  • Drawer pulls of your choosing, and corresponding hardware
  • Drill to install hardware/drawer pulls, if needed
  • E6000 Adhesive (or similar), if needed

How-To:

  1. Insert scrapbook paper into frame
  2. Remove frame stand from the back of the frame with hammer or pliers so the frame can rest level on a surface
  3. Replace the back of frame to close
  4. Apply the hardware to the back of the frame with necessary tools. For hardware that installs from the front, use a drill to screw into place. If the hardware is designed to install from the back (which you cannot access through the frame), use the adhesive to secure it.

DIY Frame trays (1)
To create this look for your home, the Cottage Frame is available at SofaMart. You can use any frame you like that suits your style. For a more versatile look, the Ponderosa Frame is a great choice; it can be taken in lots of style directions depending on the hardware and featured paper used.

Drawer pulls like the  Double Beaded Cabinet Hardware are a transitional, timeless accent to turn your frame into a tray. Any handles  you love will work!

To add a splash of color, lively prints like these watermelon, designer dots, and bird papers are simple solutions to accent your new tray. If you can’t decide on just one, feel free to change out the paper to suit the styles of the season!

For more inspiration, check out this chalk serving tray DIY! Using the same steps and little creativity, you can transform your tray into a fun chalkboard surface.

Sleep Better With Yoga

Having trouble unwinding for bedtime? Because busy days can lead into busy nights, it’s helpful to carve out a few minutes each evening to prepare your body and mind for sleep. We love this simple 8-pose yoga sequence that will poise you for better rest.

To sleep better with yoga, start tonight! Set up a yoga mat, or use an area rug in a quiet, serene space where you can safely pose. Avoid distractions, technology, and outside stimulation, and begin the sequence. While it may feel like your body is doing all of the relaxing, try to clear your mind to prep for a peaceful night’s sleep. Sweet dreams!

Every body bends differently. Gently modify the depth or intensity of a pose to make it comfortable for you. To avoid injury, do not over-extend the poses and discontinue if you feel pain. 

Yoga-Poses

For more sleep solutions, check out more tips on how to get a good night’s sleep, how to choose the right mattress for you, and learn how Denver Mattress experts can help you sleep better than ever!

Decorating with Metallics

Metallic home accents are a major influence in home design, and no matter your style, they can be incorporated to elevate the look of any space. From rustic and glamorous, to the more traditional, rooms of all styles are screaming for metals–and we’re excited to share a little inspiration on how to go metal!

metallic-home-decor

Rustic spaces can be styled using hand-stained wood elements, natural finishes and materials, and metallics. Industrial-inspired, brushed metals are a muted, quiet way to incorporate metallics into your space. Warm copper is a great complement to rustic design, as are touches like brushed nickel drawer pulls and wrought iron accents. Rustic metals add depth, and are a great way to give a rustic space a stylish edge.  We love the Studio City Sofa for its rustic, casual-chic look. Combining it with the metallic Hammered Urn Lamp, the organic, earthy Rope Mirror, the rustic Wade Coffee Table, and the Arthur Wine Cabinet creates an eclectic space with warm, subdued metal accents throughout.

Glamorous designs don’t have to be over-the-top–and neither do glam metallics. Start with a romantic piece like the Riviera Sofa. Accent the room with the polished Aladdin Lamp in silver, the stately Venetian Mirror, a carved glam piece like the Channing Coffee Table, and a metallic-accented chest like the Dash for a look that is tastefully glamorous. This way, metals add a formal feel without being too much, and really give a space character.

Traditional rooms don’t have to be stuffy. With an anchoring piece like the handsome Hampton Sofa, accent like the Classic Urn Lamp, the lovely Angelica Mirror, the romantically shaped Cyprus Isle Coffee Table, and the metal & marvelous Gilded 2 Door Cabinet give a traditional space a luxurious, inviting feel.

Mixing in gold and silver tones with rich cream add depth, warmth, and bring even the most traditional space into modern style.

No matter how you go metal, try mixing tones and finishes for a curated style that’s all yours. Seek pieces in shapes you are drawn to, and find the metal that means something to your aesthetic.

DIY Faux Stained Glass For Under $20

We love a good DIY, and are so happy to have team member Rose contribute her own Pinterest SUCCESS to the Front Door as a guest blogger. Rose has been working on a lovely renovation of her Denver home, and was gracious enough to take us behind glass doors for a peek at her DIY Faux Stained Glass (AND FOR UNDER $20?!). Her experience and how-to tips are below. It turned out great, Rose! Thank you for sharing.

***

I’ve had a lot of Pinterest fails. More than I would ever like to admit. But, this stained glass DIY was affordable and easy. The only hard part was being patient and waiting for the faux stained glass substance to dry.

The need for stained glass in my home came from the need for privacy. We have a wrap around patio on a corner lot. As you can see in the “before” photo, the outside world is very easily visible from our living room. In the wintertime, when all the leaves die, it’s even easier for people passing by to see into our home. I struggled to find a solution. French door curtains didn’t really go with the modern theme of our home, and bamboo blinds would slam against the door every time we opened and closed the door. The only option left was to alter the actual glass. I’ve always loved the look of stained glass— the thickness of the glass, the colors, the texture. Instead of replacing the panes with real stained glass, or entire new doors with stained glass, I decided to faux my way through it.

faux-stained-glass-before-after

Here are the supplies you’ll need to add faux stained glass to your windows:

  • 2 “Crystal Clear” bottles (or color of your choice) of Gallery Glass. I was able to find it at my local Michael’s.
  • Windex
  • 1″ Paint brush
  • Gloves

Total cost to transform two french doors is under $20!

2

Step 1: Clean glass with window cleaner and newspaper

Step 2: Cut nozzle of Gallery Glass and apply generously in loop motion

Step 3: Using paint brush or fingers, make small circles

Step 4: Let dry 4-5 hours before testing

faux-stained-glass-stepsA few things to note:

The product comes out white, but dries clear. Double check your bottle to make sure you have “clear.”

For a more fluid look, apply very generously and make small random circles.

For a more feathered look, apply less and use the brush.

Turn on a fan, and open some windows for faster drying.

faux-stained-glass-drying

After 4-5 hours most of the stained glass should be dry. Don’t worry about little areas of cloudy white. Some areas of my french doors took an entire day to dry. The key to this project and many other home improvement projects is to be patient. The photo below was taken 8 hours after I first applied the Gallery Glass, and there are still wet areas. Although that part was a little worrisome, I absolutely fell in love with the texture being created by light bouncing off the ripples.

faux-stained-glass-texture

The following day and night, I snapped some photos. As you can see, it’s harder to see inside during the daytime, than at night. Which is perfect for us, as we are not home during the day. At night figures (like my dog Denver) can be made out, but only if you are standing next to the glass. The rest of the living room is blurry and not really recognizable.

faux-stained-glass-day-night

One of my favorite things about this DIY is that you can peel the faux glass off and start over. You can also clean the faux glass with window cleaner if you use a soft cloth.

faux-stained-glass-detail

Please share your results with us in the comments. We would love to see your DIYs!

Father’s Day Printable Downloads

To celebrate fathers and the special men in our lives who have loved, supported and cared for us, we’re excited to share these Father’s Day printable downloads. This year, Dad’s official day is June 21, and these cards are sure to remind him how special he is all year round!

Each of these three original designs features a message just for Dad–from funny to heartfelt–and will show Pops how special he is. Simply download these colorful cards, follow the easy folding instructions, and add a personalized note to the inside & you’ll have a one-of-a-kind card for the one-in-a-million man in your life!

fathers-day-all

To assemble the cards, print & prep to fold.

1. Position the paper so the frontside greeting is at the bottom right corner.
2. Next, fold the top section down away from you so it is on the back. This gives you a half.
3. Now, fold that half into 1/4 by folding the blank side away from you so it is on the back.
4. When folded, the card is 1/4 the size of the printout, and the greeting should be inside.

fathers-day1

Printable Card 1

fathers-day2

Printable Card 2

fathers-day3

Printable Card 3

Mother’s Day Printable Downloads

 

In honor of mothers and special women in our lives, we’re happy to share these Front Door original Mother’s Day printable downloads. Playful, sweet and simple, these Mother’s Day cards are sure to show mom how much she means. These cute, colorful cards will have mom feeling the love, and are simple to put together! Happy Mother’s Day from the Front Door.

Front Door: Mother's Day Printable Cards

To assemble the cards, print & prep to fold.

1. Position the paper so the frontside greeting is at the bottom right corner.
2. Next, fold the top section down away from you so it is on the back. This gives you a half.
3. Now, fold that half into 1/4 by folding the blank side away from you so it is on the back.
4. When folded, the card is 1/4 the size of the printout, and the greeting should be inside.

mothers-day-1

Printable Card 1

mothers-day-2

Printable Card 2

mothers-day-3

Printable Card 3

 

 

Three Home Office Styles

Want to set up a stylish home work space? Or, looking to reinvent your current home office? We’ve put together some home office trends to make creating a work-friendly, design-savvy space easier than ever. Whether using classic home office furnishings or unexpected pieces,  choosing designs that suit your style and work needs can create an inspired place where you can be productive, and happy!

TRADITIONAL OFFICE

traditional-home-office
How to set up a traditional home office.

This traditional home office is anchored by the Woodlands Desk and Woodlands Hutch and Bookcase–each an office staple. Desk drawers allow for work essentials to be discreetly organized and stored, and bookshelves let you display personalizing touches. No need for a traditional office space to be stuffy! We LOVE framed photos on the bookcase, and really like softening the dark wood of the furnishings with a vintage-inspired piece like this frame from Sofa Mart!

What’s especially great about home office pieces is that they are made to work, and to look great doing it! Designed with storage, and work-friendly organizational compartments, pieces like the Woodlands are a simple way to set up a stylish space you can feel great about working in. Combining two bookshelves with the complimenting  hutch expands the storage across the back wall, and really defines the room as a workspace. If you are limited and cannot fit the hutch, the bookshelves are wonderful on their own, and can be spaced out to meet your needs.

 

SMALL OFFICE NOOK 

home-office-nook
How to style an office nook in the home.

If you’re a multi-tasker and need an office space that is too, styling a desk nook can be the  perfect solution! A space-saving desk like the Seattle Computer Desk has the tech-storage, paper filing ability, and catch-all drawers that make it great for that office oasis in any room of your home. For added style and function, we LOVE the bulletin board trend. This board is simple to make with fabric of your choosing, and is a wonderful way to add functionality to your office nook.  The above-desk bulletin board is useful for keeping important things top-of-mind, rom to-do lists to sweet snapshots of friends and family. Want to give this office trend DIY a try? Check it out on Home Is Here, now!

We came across this home office nook and really like the use of the limited space to create a functional, discreet office! Sleek, small and functional, a simple piece like the Montego Writing Desk would be perfect for recreating a space like this one. Baskets, cute home accents, and other personal touches would really round out the look of this space.

 

CREATIVE OFFICE SETUP

craft-home-office
Tips for creating a craft office in the home.

Want a workstation without committing to a full home office? Using a generously sized table in a spare room, and some clever storage solutions can transform a space into a multi-purpose, multi-use home office. Start off by choose a table that suits your style, and needs. We LOVE the Baltimore 5 Piece Dining Set because its casual, counter-height look lends it to a variety of work/projects: Perfect for crafting, for laptop work, and for studying, a counter-height table can be a fun take on the traditional desk.

For added functionality, style, and storage, baskets are a great solution. Textured, natural, and stylish, baskets like those shown on the Matrix Espresso Media Console, allow for compartmentalized organization–and add a designer touch! If space is limited, try adding stacked baskets like the Tuscan Retreat Basket Collection. Stacked, neat, and stylish, baskets like these are a wonderful idea for areas without room for a full media console or shelving.

MORE IDEAS & TRENDS WE WANT TO TRY

wall-storeage-home-office
How to make the walls work for you in your home office.

We LOVE the idea of using walls as organizational tools, and really like these wall mounted bulletin boards! Easy to install, and easily updated with new papers/important documents, this trend is a great addition to any home office with some wall space to spare. This is a great project that will add a personalized touch to your room, and makes it easy to keep on top of important papers.

Another great find is this inspired organization wall. With a chalk board, storage baskets, and more, it is a charming command station ideal for a desk nook, or office. Adding a wall-mounted shelf is a great, space saving addition to any home office.

What workspace would be complete without a little inspiration? As you organize you space and your walls, consider adding framed quotes, words of encouragement, and inspirational posters.  Personal touches like this can make your home office feel more like home. You can start here with these downloadable inspiration quotes from the Front Door, and build a great wall of inspiration as you go!!

 

Celebrate Easter with Printable Downloads

Hippity hop! Easter is coming up this weekend and in honor of the springtime holiday, we’ve created original Easter printable downloads. Dying eggs is fun, but these easy Easter DIY designs are a great non-traditional craft to celebrate.

Simply download, print, and decorate to create your own. And, be sure to check out pics of how we made ours!

easter_printables_banner

For the 3D designs, we found it easier to color and decorate before cutting. Once the graphic is decorated, you are ready to cut!

First fold the printout in half, and cut along the solid line. This will give you mirror cutouts joined at the bottom. Next, fold the bottom joint of the cutout to create the stand. As a final step, glue the two pieces at the top so the cut-outs are joined. Prop it up and enjoy!

For added fun, you can add names of your Easter party guests and use the cut-outs as place cards for your holiday party table.

3D CUT-OUTS

1. Chick and Egg Place Cards

2. Bunny and Basket Place Cards

BANNERS

Simply download, print, decorate, and cut out these springy designs! If you’re feeling an extra-Easter addition to your decor, use a thumbtack to puncture the printables, then string them together to make a festive banner!

1. Basket and Bunny Banner

2. Chick and Egg Banner

Happy Easter from The Front Door!

 

Say Goodbye to Winter with these Spring Downloads

The first day of Spring is just around the corner, and to help us all say “So long” to winter, we’ve put together these original Spring downloads. With cheery florals, and words to remind us all of new beginnings the season brings, these designs are sure to spread some springy smiles. Download and print for fun, floral and festive wall art, or save the images to set as backgrounds. We hope these downloads help get you in the spirit of Spring!

 

March-Printable-01

1. Hello sunshine – Bring on the Spring with this super sweet design. Download “hello sunshine.

 

March-Printable-02
2. Spring is here – FINALLY! And this framed design is great way to welcome it! Download “spring is here.”

 

 

March-Printable-03

3. Life in full bloom- Spring into life with this lovely affirmation, and floral design to match! Download “life in full bloom.”

Last Minute Valentine Card Download

Valentine’s Day is right around the corner, but not to worry! We have a stress-free last minute Valentine card download perfect for the special people in your life. Whether for the one who makes your heart skip a beat, or for your friends and family, these downloads are a simple DIY way to share the love.

VALENTINE DOWNLOAD

YOU WILL NEED:

  • Cardstock or colorful paper
  • Scissors
  • A box cutter
  • Glue stick

valentine-download-1

1. 3D Valentine  – To create these 3D cutout Valentine cards, cut along the SOLID LINES, and fold the DOTTED LINES. *Box cutter is easiest tool for cutting out these shapes. Always supervise or assist children with blade, and be sure to protect surfaces when cutting. Download Love and Xoxo template here.

valentine-tag-diy
2. Love Tags – Simply cut around the SOLID LINES to create these heart shaped tags. Hole punch the corner for a ribbon tie-through. Download tags here.

valentines-cards-diy

3. Heart Messages – To create this classic heart card, cut along the SOLID LINE, and fold the DOTTED LINE. Download Be My Valentine, You’re Sweet , I Love You & Hugs and Kisses here. 

Happy crafting & Happy Valentine’s Day!

6 Different Ways to Arrange Frames

Stumped about how to hang your favorite framed pieces? A blank wall can be daunting, but a little creativity and some tips can make your design dreams a reality. Check out these 6 ways to arrange frames, and try these and other arrangements to find the framed fit perfect for your space.

Before getting started with nails and a hammer, it is important to assess the items you want to hang: Are the pieces best enjoyed in a specific order? Are the colors, patterns, and images enhanced when positioned in a certain way? Does the size of each frame require it to be in a specific place on the wall? These types of questions will help you plan your wall decor before making any holes in the wall. Tip: It may be helpful to lay framed items on the floor in desired arrangement before hanging to get a sense of what they will look like on the wall. 

Frame-Arrangement1

1. Side-by-side style: This arrangement is pretty straightforward–but does allow you to make a statement with your framed pieces. Because frames are arranged in a horizontal line, with even space between each, the order can really define the decor. If your pieces tell a story, or play off of one another, this arrangement is a great idea. Balanced, and linear, this arrangement is streamlined, and really makes each piece as important as the next.

 

Frame-Arrangement2

2. Fabulous foursquare: This arrangement creates a shape using shapes, and adds visual  interest. Balancing colors, weight, and textures is important when selecting frame positions because the eye is not drawn along a left-right path.

Frame-Arrangement3

3. Stack ’em up: Stack up your pieces for a space-saving, stylish arrangement. The vertical line gives you choice in where to position darker, or lighter color schemes to create an overall feeling. This works best with same-sized frames for a cohesive look.

Frame-Arrangement4

4. Style star: This arrangement is definitely fun! Make a statement by creating a star-like shape, and arrange frames to suit your style.  The spacing, and height are simple ways to make this arrangement a standout style on your wall. Because the frames have the same dimensions, it is easy to create a polished look while exploring a nonconventional arrangement. 

.Frame-Arrangement5

5. Sandwich style: The size of each frame can influence how to best arrange your pieces. If you have two same-sized larger, and two same-sized smaller pieces, try out this fun arrangement. Bookend the two smaller pieces to feature them, and to create distance between the two larger. Each piece feels important, while the overall grouping gets showcased, too. 

Frame-Arrangement6

6. Stagger style: If your wall is crying out for visual interest, this staggered arrangement is a great solution. Balance the positioning of the larger, and smaller frames to create a symmetrical yet playful layout. This gives your wall a gallery feel, and gives you freedom to add pieces around the existing arrangement down the road.

Remember, there is no wrong way to hang your wall decor. Using these suggested arrangements, you can explore the options that will best suit your home to create an inspired wall design you will love! 

Pin this image now so you don’t forget!

arrange_frames

 

6 DIY Back to School Ideas

Hard to believe summer is winding down, and it’s back to school season again. Whether you yourself are moving into a dorm room or a rental space, or are prepping your kids for their return to campus, there is a lot of planning involved.To ease the transition, we’ve collected 6 DIY back to school ideas that cover everything from organizational tools to rental-friendly decorating ideas.

With seemingly endless school supply lists, as well as limitations on what can be done to modify a rental living space, these DIYs are a great place to start when making a back-to-school living space your own.

DIY-Back-to-School

  1. Follow this simple tutorial to create a stylish lap desk & make studying a little less painful.
  2. Keep track of shopping lists with this oh-so-cute & oh-so-handy chalk clipboard.
  3. Get that desk decluttered & keep it that way with this easy DIY desk organizer.
  4. Add a luxurious touch to your rental space with a dreamy canopy bed.
  5. Personalize your space with this easy-to-do fabric monogram.
  6. Plan your days, weeks, and month in style with a homemade bulletin board.

 

Marbled Easter Eggs

In the spirit of spring, we decided to try this fun craft for Easter.  This marbled egg DIY is a modern twist on the Easter tradition, and is fun for all ages. Inspired by Camille Styles, we decided to give these colorful eggs a try–and loved how they turned out! See below for gallery, and for instructions on how to DIY your own marbleized eggs.

DIY Marble Easter Egg HoleDIY Marble Easter Egg DrainingDIY Marble Easter Egg EmptyDIY Marble Easter Egg Nail PolishDIY Marble Easter Egg WaterDIY Marble Easter Egg MixingDIY Marble Easter Egg DryingDIY Marble Easter Egg Drying 2DIY Marble Easter Eggs

You Will Need:
Drained Eggs
Nail polish in your favorite springy colors
Disposable container of cold water
Stirring stick
Paper towel
Rubber gloves

How to marbleize your eggs:
1. First, drain the eggs: Puncture a small hole in the top and bottom of each egg. Be careful not to crack the surrounding shell.
2. Allow yoke to drain, overnight if needed. To expedite, we found that blowing into the top was the best way to get the contents out.
3. Put 3-5 drops of each polish color into the cold water. The order colors are introduced to the water will effect the marbleization pattern.
4. Stir the contents with disposable stir stick.
5. Submerge each egg fully and then remove. Swirl the egg to get better coverage and enhance the marbleization. Wearing rubber gloves will protect your hands!
6. Allow some time to dry before handling–but the eggs should be ready to go after being dipped!

The great thing about these eggs is how long they will last! Unlike traditional hardboiled eggs, these hollowed shells won’t turn or go bad. You can enjoy your colorful creations on Easter and long after.

Photos by Kristie Carney

Yarn Christmas Tree

DIY-Yarn-Christmas-Tree-Featured-ImageChristmas is about traditions old & new, and perhaps the most beloved is decorating the Christmas tree. This season, we kept the tradition of the Tannenbaum alive, but gave it a non-traditional twist: Instead of using the classic fir, we constructed a yarn Christmas tree! We found this fun idea on another great blog, and we couldn’t resist giving it a try.

Ideal for small living spaces or areas without  power outlets (like our office lobby), the yarn tree is festive, seasonal, and space-saving. Easily assembled and mounted on any wall, the yarn tree brings the best of the Christmas season to your decor in a fun, new way. Check out photos below of our tree, and the simple directions for creating your own.

The most fun part of this project is that there are no rules for making your perfect tree. Choose the colors you love, and create a new tree tradition of your own. From garland and ribbons, to glittered tinsel and ornaments, there are endless accents to bring seasonal shine to your tree.

What you will need:

  1. Yarn in a color of your choosing
  2. Command wall hooks/any wall-safe adhesive hooks
  3. Adhesive-backed ribbon/desired decorations for tree

How to:

  1. Arrange the adhesive hooks in desired locations on wall
  2. Allow adhesive hooks to set before beginning threading
  3. Anchor end of yarn to desired starting point
  4. Weave across hooks until desired tree pattern is created
  5. Embellish tree with seasonal decorations

To view original source, click here! 

Happy Holidays!

And our final product!

The Front Door Furniture Row DIY Yarn Christmas Tree

Festive & Fun Pumpkin Decorating Ideas

Festive and Fun No Carve Pumkpin IdeasNothing says it’s time for Halloween like carving pumpkins. To get into the spirit of the spooky season, the Front Door took pumpkins into our own hands for some fun spins on traditional pumpkin crafting.

Inspired by creative and out-of-the-box suggestions from various sites, we attempted a few festive pumpkin decorating ideas for ourselves. Check out the gallery below for pics and tips–and for links to full instruction on decorating your very own pumpkins just in time for Halloween.

Festive and Fun Glitter Star No Carve Pumpkin Idea

With simple supplies like school glue and your favorite glitter, a pumpkin can be instantly glitzed up. We started with a small white pumpkin with orange veins. The black stars contrast well against the pumpkins natural skin, but to really make the glitter pop, painting your pumpkin a solid background color is a great idea. Any size pumpkin will work.

Simply apply glue in the areas you want glittered, then pour on the glitterHINT: It is useful to apply glitter on a piece of paper that will allow you to gather and reuse excess glitter. Once the pumpkin is glittered to your liking, let it dry & enjoy! FOR MORE INSTRUCTION & INSPIRATION…

Festive and Fun Melted Crayon Carve Pumpkin Idea

To pump up the color & fun factor of our pumpkins, we hopped on the “melted crayon” trend. Using a home hair dyer, a box of crayons, and hot glue we were able to create a colorful crayon pumpkin. Our white pumpkin worked just fine–but we wish we had painted it white to give the colors even more pop. We found that high heat and air settings melted the crayons faster, but watch out for splattering. HINT: When peeling the wrappers off of your crayons, first break them in half (per instructions). This makes the wrappers easier to remove. Also consider arranging crayons in a color pattern that will be pretty even after melting. FOR MORE INSTRUCTION & INSPIRATION…

Festive and Fun Push Pin No Carve Pumpkin Idea

Who knew sticking to it could be stylish? With push pins and a little patience, a pumpkin can be easily transformed. We love stripes, and selected clear, black, and red pins to create a ghoulishly glam pattern. HINT: A small pumpkin may work best for this one. Push pins are small, and many are needed to cover a regular size pumpkin.Festive and Fun Thumb Tack Monogram No Carve Pumpkin Idea

Who wouldn’t love a personalized pumpkin? Using the same technique as the pushpin pumpkin, we placed the silver thumbtacks for a glamorous monogrammed look. HINT: While this pumpkin was done freehand, you can draw your lettering onto the pumpkin before sticking the thumbtacks. We chose to cover the pumpkin for a black background; black–or any color–paint would work well here. FOR MORE INSTRUCTION & INSPIRATION…

spiral-pumpkin

Looking for a decoration that is ideal for an illuminated pumpkin? This translucent spiral carving is a fun take on traditional carving, and allows the entire pumpkin to glow. The first–and most fun, depending on how you look at it!–step is to scoop out, and clean your pumpkin. To carve the pumpkin we used a laminate cutting tool. The trick with a translucent carving is to not completely cut through the pumpkin, but to shave or thin the pumpkin’s skin. By cutting the outer layers, the pumpkin becomes translucent without having holes or windows through it. HINT: Tracing your desired pattern can help with accuracy; to thin the walls of your pumpkin for translucence, try scraping out the inside of your pumpkin even more before you start carving the outside.

Festive and Fun Translucent Carved Designs No Carve Pumpkin Idea

Using the same laminate carving tool, you can carve any picture into your pumpkin. The laminate tool gives you precision to cut away layers of pumpkin, and is strong enough to cut all the way through the pumpkin as needed. This carved pumpkin is our very own Front Door logo…with a ghost popping out! HINT: It helped us to draw the desired image onto the pumpkin before carving. Be sure to identify what is positive and negative space when carving your image. FOR MORE INSTRUCTION & INSPIRATION…

No matter what technique you use to decorate you pumpkin, you can create one you will love by selecting materials, colors, and patterns that match your style. Happy decorating, and Happy Halloween!

Spring DIY: Birdseed Tree Ornaments

DIYSpringFeaturedSliderThe sound of birds chirping is quintessentially spring. Treat the springtime songbirds in your backyard with these easy DIY birdseed ornaments.

 

SUPPLIES

  • ¾ cup birdseed
  • ¼ cup water
  • 1 small envelope of gelatin
  • twine or string
  • cookie cutters, molds, or mason jar lids
  • wax paper

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Mix together the envelope of gelatin with ¼ cup of water and bring to a simmer while stirring. Continue stirring until the gelatin is dissolved.
  2. Remove from heat and let cool for a minute.
  3. Stir in the ¾-cup birdseed, adding a little more if there is still liquid in the bottom of the pan.
  4. Lay your cookie cutters out on wax paper and fill with the birdseed mixture.
  5. For solid ornaments, fill half full, cut your twine, knot the end and push the knot down into your birdseed. Continue filling with birdseed, covering the end of your twine and knot.
  6. Turn them over a few times while they are allowed to dry overnight.
  7. Remove from the cookie cutters and hang them in your trees and enjoy!

 

Winter DIY: Merry & Bright Door Decor

Deck out your door this winter with this affordable, easy-to-DIY votive display. Charming, cheap and cheerful, this project is sure to bring some brightness to the exterior of your home.

Merry and Bright DIY

MATERIALS

  • Mason or other quart-size glass jars
  • Wire — about the thickness of uncooked spaghetti, about 3′-long
  • Wire Cutters
  • Needle-Nose Pliers
  • Hanging Hooks
  • Colorful Play Sand or Pebbles
  • Glue
  • Hot Glue Gun
  • Candles
  • Decorative Trim (sheer ribbon or fabric, vintage buttons or other decorative fasteners, real or synthetic greenery and/or berries, etc.)
  • Scissors

TIP: Battery–operated votives can be used in place of candles.

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Cut a length of wire long enough to make a handle approximately 12″ to 18″. Bend the ends of the cut wire at a 90-degree angle about 3/4″ from each end. Place the ends
of the handle on either side of the opening of the glass jar. Wrap more wire around the mouth of the jar twice, securing the handle to the jar. Twist the wrapped wire until it is snug, and cut off any excess. Bend the ends of the handle up as far as you can on top of the wrapped wire.
  2. Cut a strip of fabric or a length of sheer ribbon —this works best for letting the
light shine through— long enough to go completely around the jar overlapping by at least 1/2″. Make sure to leave enough glass showing so the candlelight can be seen.
  3. Hot glue the ribbon or fabric to the jar, overlapping and hot gluing the ends.
  4. Hot glue decorations over the overlapped ends.
  5. Fill the bottom of the jar with about 1″ of sand or pebbles to prevent the candle from shifting. Press the candle down firmly into this material to make sure it’s secure.
  6. Hang the finished candleholders using pre-made hooks or a loop made from leftover wire and securely fastened to prevent the candleholder from falling or tipping over.

More Patterns At Spoonflower

Spoonflower2SliderWe’ve heard your requests through our Spoonflower.com account for more colors and we’re happy to comply! Head over to our page to browse new shades of “Two Chevrons Make a Right,” “No Such Thing as Too Many Diamonds,” “Fancy Lattice,” “Chevron and On,” and “A Girl’s Best Plaid.” Plus we’re offering two brand new designs, “Simple Silhouette Bicycles” and “Roses and Peonies.” Let us know if you have any requests or suggestions!

Spoonflower Patterns

Greg’s DIY: Easy Mirror Project

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Mirrors can help bring light into a dark space and add dimension to a small one. We tapped our Residential Interior Designer, Greg Utsinger for an easy mirror project that would mimic the starburst mirror trend for a fraction of the cost. Here’s Greg’s DIY:

I’ve always loved starburst mirrors, but some of these can cost upwards of $200. Still, I needed something to fill the space over the bed, so I came up with a solution to create the look for about $7.

At my local craft store I bought a couple packages of round mirror tiles in assorted sizes and some tacky adhesive putty.

I already had a small round mirror, so I added the tiles to the wall around the mirror in a gradually expanding design. It not only brings in the needed light, but added a sense of whimsy and romanticism in a modern way.
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Making Mirror Supplies

Greg's DIY Mirror Final

Glass Etching Tutorial

Glass etching can cost a lot of money if purchased from the professionals, but it’s not as hard as it looks! Attention to detail and a steady hand are all you need to personalize wine glasses, mason jars, mirrors, or frames. Let’s begin!

MATERIALS:
  • Contact Paper
  • Etching Cream
  • Cheap Paint Brush
  • Glass item that you’ll be etching
  • Exacto Knife
  • Self healing mat or throwaway surface to cut design on

Glass Etching Materials

Make a design yourself and scan it into your computer, or find one online that you like. A simple, non-intricate design is a good starting one. Decorative hole punches come in handy here! Print your design on plain computer paper and tape it to a sheet of contact paper. You must leave the backing on the contact paper until you’re ready to stick it to the glass surface.

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2-cutting
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1. Use your exacto knife to cut out the design, pressing hard enough to cut all the way through the contact paper. No need to rush here, you want to be clean and exact.

2. Remove the backing from your contact paper and adhere to the glass surface. Make sure it’s secure by rubbing down all corners or bubbles.

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4-brushing
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5-rinsing
3. Brush a thin layer of etching cream over the exposed design area. Let dry for 10 minutes. Remove and discard contact paper.

4. Rinse with water.
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Wash glass carefully before using.
Let us know how your own creations come out!

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Make Your Own Fabric at Spoonflower

Spoonflower.com provides a service allowing individuals to design, upload, print, and sell their own personal fabric designs. Members of the site can browse, order, comment on and even click on the small heart icon to favorite other people’s creations. Members of the site have used Spoonflower to create curtains, quilts, clothes, bags, furniture, dolls, pillows, framed artwork, costumes, banners and much, much more. Many people also do cut-and-sew patterns, which makes plush or doll making incredibly easy. Spoonflower uses large-format, inkjet printers designed to print on fabric called digital textile printers. Using no additional chemicals, but environmentally friendly, water-based inks on natural fibers, their printers allow members to use as many colors as they can imagine.

We’ve created a medley of chevron, lattice, and plaid patterns for you to peruse and enjoy in our own Front Door Shop on Spoonflower.

Spoonflower

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Chevron and On
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Fancy Lattice
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A Girls Best Plaid
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No Such Thing As Too Many Diamonds
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twochevronsmakearight
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Make Your Own Winter Skin Care Remedies

Winter can be the cruelest month when it comes to your skin. Harsh winds, the lack of moisture, and vents blowing out dry, hot air around the clock leaves skin dry, uneven, and prone to breakouts. So when it comes to the products we want to use on our face to fight that, we tend to lean towards natural, chemical-free solutions to help replenish those lost vitamins and minerals. Plus, these can be made in bulk in order to be frozen and kept in ice trays for a quick mask or scrub all year long.

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We used the recipes found in this month’s Women’s Health magazine as a base, and made our own personal changes to it. We found that using the scrub first and immediately following with the mask made for some very happy faces.
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Winter Skin DIY
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Cranberry Face Scrub
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CRANBERRY FACE SCRUB
  • ¾ cup cornmeal
  • 6 tablespoons freshly crushed cranberries (takes about ½ cup of fresh ones to equal 6 tbsps when crushed)
  • 3 tablespoons unflavored almond milk
  • 6 tablespoons honey
  • 1 teaspoon coconut oil

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This super-exfoliate removes layers of dead skin to help even out skin tone and prevent breakouts. Cranberries are full of antioxidants, namely ellagic acid, which helps to prevent wrinkles caused by UV rays. Honey and Almond milk both carry natural moisturizers and softeners, for a scrub that will leave your skin soft and happy.

Combine in a medium-sized bowl. Massage onto a freshly cleaned, dampened face and neck for 2-3 minutes. Rinse with lukewarm water. Use once or twice a week.

 

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PUMPKIN HONEY MASK
  • 1¼ cups of canned, mashed pumpkin pulp (should be just about one whole can)
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 5 tablespoons honey
  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil

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Pumpkin Honey Mask
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According to the Women’s Health interviewed dermatologist, Jessica Wu, pumpkin is one of those super-hero vegetables packed with vitamin a, antioxidants, anti-inflammatory and antifungal compounds. Those are the powers that soothe sensitive skin, redness, rosacea, and even help fight against wrinkles. Honey and coconut oil are natural moisturizers.

Combine the ingredients in a medium-sized bowl until smooth. Apply to freshly washed skin before bed, and let sit for 20 minutes. Rinse and dry. Skin should feel soft and smoothed, as the mask leaves natural hydrating oils to replenish overnight. Apply weekly or when skin is irritated.

 

Ingredients

Affordable and Creative Gift: Tile Coasters DIY

Short on time with a long list of gifts to fill? This Christmas, we came up with a fairly quick homemade gift that can be done in bulk (as long as you have a free table) and is completely customizable. Whether for coworkers, aunts and uncles, or your book club, give a gift that’s as practical as it is pretty, tile coasters made by you.

ModPodgeTiles

Materials:
  • 4″ x 4″ White Tiles
  • Scrapbook Paper (thicker is better!)
  • Mod Podge decoupage glue
  • Foam Sponge to apply
  • Waterproof Acrylic Sealer
  • Felt
  • Rubber Cement
  • Scissors
  • Ruler
  • Wax Paper to cover surface

 

DIRECTIONS:
  1. Cut paper into 4″ x 4″ squares.
  2. Wipe off the tiles to get rid of dust with a damp rag.
  3. Using the paintbrush or sponge, apply an even layer of Mod Podge on the top of the tile.
  4. Place the paper square on the tile and center.
  5. Use a squeegee to smooth out the paper, getting rid of all wrinkles or bubbles.
  6. Allowing each layer to dry, apply at least 3 more layers of Mod Podge over the top of the tile and applied paper. Be careful to get the sides of the tile as well.
  7. When the last layer is dry, spray two coats of acrylic sealer along the top and sides of the tile, waiting at least 30 minutes in between layers.
  8. Once the tile is dry again, cut the felt into 4″ x 4″ squares.
  9. Apply a generous amount of rubber cement on the back of the tile before placing and centering the felt square.
  10. Let dry overnight. Do not stack the tiles, as the rubber cement will soak through the felt and onto the tile beneath it. If you must stack them, place a layer of parchment paper between each layer.
  11. When completely dry, stack in sets of 4, wrap with a ribbon, and viola!

 

Tile Coasters as Christmas Gifts

Reclaiming Old Tablecloths or Bed Sheets: Part Two: Dyeing

Now that our napkins are all sewed and ready, we can start dyeing them! Dyeing is an easy and cheap way to bring life to older or stained garments (many marks and spills can be covered up simply by choosing a darker color). We decided the trendy and chic Royal Blue would perfect for the fall season, but vibrant enough to keep around all year.

MATERIALS:
  • Dye (we used Rit’s Royal Blue)
  • Gloves
  • 5 Gallon Bucket
  • Lots of hot water
  • Medium sized Tupperware
  • A long stir stick
  • Chosen fabric
  • Fixative (optional!)

Dye Materials

 

STEP ONE: PREPARING THE FABRIC

Make sure you pre-wash anything you’re about to dye. This way the fabric will be clean of any dust or spots that could block the dye from soaking in. Be careful not to use any fabric that is, or more than, 50% polyester, acrylic, or that has a special finish; the dye will not hold. The lighter the fabric is to begin with, the truer the dye color will be in the end.

STEP TWO: PREP YOUR WORK AREA

Choose wisely where you plan on doing this; splashes and spills will happen! Find an area outside, or put down some towels around where you’re going to work. Wear clothes you’re perfectly happy with being ruined. You can use a sink, or a bucket – whatever will hold three gallons of water. A big sink that can fit a 5 gallon bucket while still having easy access to a faucet with very hot water is ideal. Also check to make sure that your stirrer is long enough to reach to the bottom of the bucket without having to submerge your hands and dye your skin.

STEP THREE: DYEING

Fill your bucket or sink with enough hot, steaming water that all of the garments you are dyeing will float. We filled it with about 3 gallons to fit 9 linen napkins and one large t-shirt. Dunk your to-be-dyed pieces in the hot water, give them a quick wring and put them off to the side. Also fill the large Tupperware with the hot water, two cups worth, and pour in the powdered dye. Once the dye looks mixed, pour it into the bucket and stir. Continue stirring as you add your fabric, un-scrunched, into the mixture. Stir constantly for 10 to 30 minutes until you think the color is dark enough.

Dyeing Fabric

Dyeing Fabric

STEP FOUR: DRYING & AFTER CARE

You can either pop it in the dryer or let it air dry. To maximize the long life of your dye, try using a fixative afterwards as well. Make sure to wash in cold water from now, with only mild detergents and no bleach.

Dyed Napkins Dyed Napkins

Let us know how your own dyeing projects go! We’d love to see what creations you can come up with too.

Autumn Inspired Wreath: Under $30

We’re officially in the thick of fall! That means guests are soon to be crowding around our door for Thanksgiving dinner, and we believe in the power of first impressions. However, we don’t believe in having to pay an arm and a leg for them. Using cheap materials found around the craft store, or even real leaves taken from your own front yard, you can easily make your own fall wreath in an afternoon.

Materials:
  • Grapevine Wreath
  • Leaves Garland
  • Leaves and Embellishments Garland
  • Hot glue gun and sticks

Tip: Make sure to check the Sunday paper or search online for a coupon before you go. We found one for 40% off!

We started out with a plain grapevine wreath, a 5 ft garland with fake leaves on it, and another garland with fall embellishments such as acorns and berries.

Wrap the leaf garland around the wreath in a spiral, attaching it with a hot glue gun as you go. Arrange the leaves as you want them, using more glue or bending them until they’re how you’d like them. Try to angle them mostly towards the front.

Fall Garland Grapevine Wreath

 

Starting the Fall Wreath

Materials

Next, take the embellished garland and cut it into five separate pieces. The one we found was attached with metal clips, and so was easy to unravel. If your garland is different, simply bend the metal wiring back and forth where you want it to break until it does.

Carefully arrange each piece on the wreath before gluing down, keeping in mind where the top and bottom of the wreath will be. Once your placement is decided, stick the ends of the piece into the garland, weaving it for a natural look, and then hot glue in place.

The wreath base we chose came with a handy hanging wire already in place, though if you needed to create your own, you could do so by weaving in and gluing wire to the back yourself. A metal wreath hanger over the door makes for an easy and temporary hook.

Happy Wreathing!

Final Autumn Wreath

Design*Sponge at Home by Grace Bonney

DesignSpongeSliderDesign*Sponge at Home Design*Spongebrings all the style and inspiration of the famous interior design website designsponge.com to the printed page. It includes “Sneak Peeks,” where creative minds are interviewed about their homes, “DIY Projects,” “DIY Basics,” modern flower arrangement tips, and their well-known “Before & After” series of reader’s solutions to their own decorating issues. The latter is real people who voluntarily submitted their own efforts on their own time and budget, which alone makes for invaluable advice. Not only is this a handy collection of both projects and ideas, but the chic cover makes a great addition to any coffee table. Design Sponge at Home is an interior design book that helps you to improve your interior design, while doing so just by looking great on your shelves; who could ask for more?

To give you a taste, here’s an excerpt from one of their DIY Projects:

BLEACH PATTERN TEA TOWELS

Adapted from DESIGN*SPONGE AT HOME by Grace Bonney (Artisan Books). Copyright © 2011
Designers: Derek Fagerstrom and Lauren Smith
Cost: $20
Time: 1 hour (plus drying time)
Difficulty: 1 star (out of 5)

Resist-dyeing, like batik or tie-dye, is a lot of fun, but can be a mess – especially for those of us completing projects at home. Design*Sponge editors Derek and Lauren discovered that bleaching a pattern onto pre-dyed fabric using a gel bleach pen is a much easier, cleaner way to achieve a similar effect on a limited budget. So the next time you pick up a bleach pen to work on your bathroom tiles, consider trying your hand at faux batik dyeing using inexpensive, colorful fabric.

project

Materials:

4 tea towels or cloth napkins
Plastic drop cloth or aluminum foil
Clorox Bleach Pen (2 pens should be enough for 4 towels)
Rubber gloves

Instructions:

Protect your work surface with a plastic drop cloth or sheets of aluminum foil. Wear work clothes in case the pen brushes against you, and open your windows for ventilation. Lay the towels down on the work surface and draw patterns on the fabric with the bleach pen. We like the look of free-hand, slightly wavy lines, but you can also draw your desired pattern onto the fabric beforehand using tailor’s chalk and trace over it with the bleach pen. Let the finished towels sit for 30 minutes.
Wearing rubber gloves to protect your hands from the bleach, rinse the towels in cold water. It is very important to rinse off all the bleach in order to avoid smearing.
Let the towels dry, and give them a final wash before use.

You can pick up your own copy of DESIGN*SPONGE AT HOME by Grace Bonney (Artisan Books) at Amazon.

Renovating Radiators

As our radiators creak to life again, I’m reminded of how obtrusive they can be. You can’t really use the space, and all it seems to function as during the warm seasons is to be a spider’s paradise. I’ve been trying to think of ways to spruce up my radiators, so that even if they can’t hold anything for me, they could at least look good not doing it! You have two main options to radiator renovating: painting or covering.
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PAINTING:

To start with, if you have a previously unpainted radiator you’ll want to coat it with a bare metal primer to help prevent against rust and for a smoother paint job. If it’s already painted a color you’d like to change, you’ll have to sand it first. You can use sand paper and do it by hand; try taping it around toothbrushes or metal wire to get in all the nooks. Another option is to sandblast it, which will be much quicker and thorough, although the harder part is removing and carrying the radiator outside to do so.
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Painted Radiator
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From there, you have another two options to the type of paint. You can bring it to a shop that paints bikes and cars and ask them to powder coat it, which will give you the most even application. Powder coating is a dry powder cured by heat to form a hard finish that’s more resilient than conventional paint; hence the use of it on bicycles and cars.
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If you decide to paint it yourself, which is absolutely do-able, make sure to use an oil-based or a high-heat spray paint. By doing it by hand with oil-based, you’ll be able to use multiple colors and create any kind of design; either by tracing existing filigree in the metal or painting your own mural. Spray paint is going to get into all those edges easier than fumbling with tiny brushes will ? just make sure you do an even coating. It’s also handy for creating ombré effects or other designs that need to blend.

Reclaiming Old Tablecloths or Bed Sheets: Make Your Own Linen Napkins

Nothing is worse than finding a hole in your favorite bed sheets or a giant wine spill on your favorite tablecloth. But if you’ve got a sewing machine, or just a lot of patience, you can reclaim them for new, stylish linen napkins. Linen napkins are an easy way to make even take out night feel fancy, and they’re environmentally conscious as you’ll no longer be throwing out stacks of paper napkins every week which cannot be recycled.

We’ve created an easy How-To guide for you to follow along with and create your own. You’ll need a sewing machine and an iron for this project. You could probably, painstakingly, do it without either but you would need a lot of time, patience, and pins.

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MATERIALS:
  • Linen (preferably of cotton or muslin)
  • Thread
  • Scissors
  • Sewing Needle
  • Measuring Tape/Ruler
  • Iron
  • Pencil/Chalk/Washable Marker

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Linen Napkin Red Plate
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Steps One Two Three Four Napkins

STEP ONE: MEASURING & CUTTING

Depending on how big you want your napkins, you’re going to measure out half an inch past your desired end result. I wanted 12 ½” x 12 ½” squares, so I cut my fabric out to 13″ x 13″ squares. On each square, measure and mark an inch in.

STEP TWO: FOLDING & IRONING

Fold over the edge so that it touches your marked 1″ line, making a ½” fold. Iron until it lays flat. Turn the square and do the next, until the whole square now measures 12 ½.” Fold over again, so that the raw fabric edge is tucked underneath and the fold is now against your measured line. Iron flat.

STEP THREE: SEWING

This is the easiest part. Sew the folds in place, going from the top to the bottom of the square. Cut off loose threads, turn to the next side and repeat. Instead of doing a solid sew all the way around, this way you get a cute cross-over effect that forms small x’s on each corner.

Linen Napkin Beauty Shot

Linen Napkin Blue Bowl