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29 September, 2011

Pottery Barn Inspired Dough Bowl Centerpiece

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034 Another favorite of mine is back taking center stage in my fall decor…my Pottery Barn inspired dough bowl centerpiece! I have used it on my buffet this year with some of my vintage silver and I love the contrast of the rustic and the elegant!

PB dough bowlI have been seeing dough bowls filled with candles for several years now on Pottery Barn’s web site and I love that look. But I am especially happy to have my dough bowl because it was my grandmother’s!

004 I have made a few changes this year, though, with the assistance of my handsome co-host Baby Kitty. What would I do without his help?

011 Here’s a better look at this year’s version…white candles tied with raffia and white pumpkins on a bed of faux acorns covering a base of dried pinto beans to anchor it all. Sounds like a yummy new vegetarian dish, doesn't it?
 014 Here’s a closer look. The acorns came from Kohl’s…half price! I tried picking some up from an oak tree at my grandson’s Little League field and the tops had already fallen off, so I will use this nature-perfected version!

016 You can see the dried pinto beans peeking out. I tried it without them and it didn’t work. They have to be there to stabilize the candles. PB uses sand, but I can't do that with my staff!

018 I will tell you a secret about the pumpkins…they are from last year! Yes, they made it for a whole year…unbelievable! I just kept them in a basket in the living room because I didn’t have the heart to throw them out…and they just kept going and going and going
 023 The champagne bucket was one of my Goodwill finds from this summer. I was excited to find it so I could fill it with interesting things. For fall, it is this great faux pumpkin…from Walmart for $5.00! I love the stem! I added some leaves to make it look a little more pumpkin-patchy!

IMG_4269 Here’s last year’s version with traditional orange pumpkins. I used it as part of the centerpiece on my Thanksgiving tablescape. The orange pumpkins really added a little pop of color with all of the creams and naturals.

dough bowl And here is the first dough bowl arrangement that I did. This look is a little simpler…more like the PB version…with just a few pumpkins added.

033And finally…another look at this year’s version on my buffet. I love seeing my grandmother’s dough bowl taking such an important place in my home. It brings back memories of Thanksgivings long ago when it was used to make batches of fluffy biscuits for breakfast during our visits. I hope I am making memories for my grandchildren at Thanksgiving, too, and that this dough bowl will be a part of them!

Thanks for stopping by! I hope you enjoyed a little peek at my fall decor!  Please visit these wonderful bloggers and their beautiful blogs to see what they are up to and to find a list of this week’s participants!
Stephanie Lynn at Under the Table and Dreaming for the Sunday Showcase Party
Susan at Between Naps on the Porch for Metamorphosis Monday
Mary at Boogieboard Cottage for Masterpiece Monday
Sarah at Thrifty Decor Chick for Before and After Monday (first Monday of the month)
Marty at A Stroll Thru Life for Tabletop Tuesday
Linda at Coastal Charm for Nifty Thrifty Tuesday
Beth at The Stories of A2Z for Tutorials and Tips Tuesday
Kim at Savvy Southern Style for Wow Us Wednesdays
Judy at DIY by Design for Fall into Fall
Gina at The Shabby Creek Cottage for Transformation Thursdays
Sherry at No Minimalist Here for the Open House Party on Thursdays
Barb at Grits and Glamour for Keep It Simple on Thursdays
Cindy at My Romantic Home for Show and Tell Friday
Courtney at French Country Cottage for Feathered Nest Friday
Honey at 2805 for Potpourri Friday 
Diann at The Thrifty Groove for Thrifty Things Friday
Debra at Common Ground for Fabulous Fall Fun
Sherry at The Charm of Home for Home Sweet Home Friday
Roeshel at The DIY Showoff for the Fall Festival
Donna at Funky Junk Interiors for Saturday Nite Special
See you next time! A la prochaine! Pin It!

22 September, 2011

Country Living Inspired Découpage Pumpkins

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I am really excited about my latest project…my Country Living inspired découpage pumpkins! I knew this would be my next project when I spied…

countrylivingpumpkins  …this on the cover of their latest issue! Isn’t this simply gorgeous?  I love the way the pumpkins look as though they have been covered with fabric even though it is actually paper!  Sooo...the magazine hopped in my cart and went straight home with me! Next, I went right to work assembling what I needed. And, as luck would have it, just about everything was half price at Michael’s…including the cream faux pumpkins!

088 I decided that a few things about my pumpkins would be different from those in Country Living. First, I chose a damask pattern rather than toile for one of them. There’s already so much toile in my house and I wanted these pumpkins to stand out. And then, I also decided that I would use the cream pumpkins just as they are rather than paint them white. That just fits better with my decor. Other than that, for the most part, I followed their instructions, found online here.

pageFor the damask pumpkin:  
1. I chose a fabric with a simple damask pattern that would be easy to work with…Premier Prints Avery in Greenage…and bought just enough to have one repeat of the design. I scanned and printed it, making several copies. I used Walmart's cheapest copy paper so that it would be as thin as possible.  Remember…you are working with paper copies of fabric…not fabric!
2. Next, I cut them out and spaced them according to the design, taping them to the pumpkin.
3. I removed the tape and attached each piece of the design to the pumpkin one by one, using matte finish Mod Podge…my new BFF. (Mine was a 25 cent yard sale find.) The process requires some finesse and patience and, quite honestly, it helps if you have some experience with découpaging  spheres.
4. Give the pumpkin a thin all-over coat, let dry and you are done!
This was the easiest one, so if you only want one, I suggest this one!

page1 The calico print pumpkin was a little harder:
1. I couldn’t find any fabric that would do, so I bought scrap booking paper and scanned and printed it. The scrap booking paper would be too thick as is. Plus, I needed about 3 pages to cover the pumpkin.
2. I cut lengthwise pieces about  1 1/2 inches wide, working within the pattern. I attached them with Mod Podge as before. It helps to cut alternating notches about 1/3 of the way in to allow for the curves of the pumpkin.
3. Eventually, the strips got off a little and I had to straighten them back up by piecing in a few odd shapes. Here, you can see an empty spot I am about to cover.
4. Once again, I finished with another final all-over coat of Mod Podge and…taa daa!

015 The pumpkin quilt design was downloaded from Country Living’s web site. I followed their instructions and measured and calculated the size and number of designs I would need and adjusted. A program such as Photoscape…free to download…was really helpful here, since I had to adjust the color a little also.  I found it helpful to make small pencil marks on the pumpkin for the top and bottom of the design.  The little yellow lines are perfect places to cut in some notches to allow for the curve of the pumpkin. If it’s not perfect, it’s OK since you can’t see all sides of the pumpkin at once!  A final coat of Mod Podge to the whole pumpkin and you are through!

stand I didn't have a suitable stand for the pumpkins, so I made my own by painting a small flower pot and a larger saucer and hot-gluing them together. They were also half-price at Michael’s! I used an ivory spray paint since my pumpkins are cream.

BK Baby Kitty says his favorite pumpkin is the one with orange patches…I wonder why!

clpumpkins1Here are my pumpkins in their copy-cat magazine pose…work it, girls!

page2 And here they are with my inspiration…not exactly alike, but just what I wanted for my house! Total spent on the project...about $25. Not bad, huh? And I'll have them forever! What do you think?

And...a little added note...I am excited to say that my pumpkins were featured in their magazine! Thanks, Country Living!

Thanks for stopping by! I hope you enjoyed a little peek at my project! Please visit these wonderful bloggers and their beautiful blogs to see what they are up to and to find a list of this week’s participants!
Stephanie Lynn at Under the Table and Dreaming for the Sunday Showcase Party and the Pumpkin Parade
Susan at Between Naps on the Porch for Metamorphosis Monday
Mary at Boogieboard Cottage for Masterpiece Monday
Sarah at Thrifty Decor Chick for Before and After Monday (first Monday of the month)
Debbie at Debbiedoo's Blogging and Blabbing for the Magazine Copy Cat Challenge
Beth at The Stories of A2Z for Tutorials and Tips Tuesday
Marty at A Stroll Thru Life for Tabletop Tuesday
Kate at Centsational Girl for the Fall Craft Party
Linda at Coastal Charm for Nifty Thrifty Tuesday
Kim at Savvy Southern Style for Wow Us Wednesdays
Judy at DIY by Design for Fall into Fall on Wednesdays
Gina at The Shabby Creek Cottage for Transformation Thursdays
Barb at Grits and Glamour for Keep It Simple on Thursdays
Sherry at No Minimalist Here for the Open House Party on Thursdays
Cindy at My Romantic Home for Show and Tell Friday
Courtney at French Country Cottage for Feathered Nest Friday
Honey at 2805 for Potpourri Friday
Diann at The Thrifty Groove for Thrifty Things Friday
Debra at Common Ground for Fabulous Fall Fun
Sherry at The Charm of Home for Home Sweet Home Friday
Rachelle at Fingerprints on the Fridge for Feature Yourself Friday
Roeshel at The DIY Showoff for the Fall Festival
Donna at Funky Junk Interiors for Saturday Nite Special
See you next time! A la prochaine!
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18 September, 2011

Easy Pottery Barn Inspired Fall Candle

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IMG_3625Are you ready for Fall? I am and it feels like it's on its way! Here's an easy and inexpensive way to add a little touch of Fall to your decor that I snitched from Pottery Barn's web site last year!
Yaaay! Fall has finally come to Georgia! The cool nights and sunny days that make it my favorite season are here at last! And a trip to a pumpkin farm in the north Georgia mountains (more about that later) has finally put me in the mood to decorate! And, as usual…

img24m …thumbing through the Pottery Barn catalog has given me some great ideas. However, being the thrifting addict that I am, I cannot see paying the $19 plus shipping for the miniature Indian corn…not to mention the cylinder! Yikes! Sooo… I set out to find what I needed to recreate this wonderful fall candle!

IMG_3596The cylindrical candle holder came from Dollar Tree for…you guessed it…$1.00! I found the miniature Indian corn at Kroger for only $2.99 for three ears and I needed nine…about $9.00. The rest of the items were already on hand…free! So the total cost of the project was about $10not bad!

IMG_3600 First, I put a rubber band around the cylinder and started adding the corn. I turned the husks up toward the ears of corn as I added them. I tried using some corn left over from last year, but the husks were just too dry. The corn bought this year was much more pliable. Of course, our co-host Baby Kitty had to inspect my progress!

IMG_3607 Finally, I managed to get all of the corn securely tucked in behind the rubber band. Now I am ready for the next step!

IMG_3608I tied the ears to the cylinder, winding it around tightly several times to help hide the rubber band. I used jute twine rather than cotton twine as they did. I like its chunky texture and feel.

IMG_3609 I also trimmed some of the husks to give it a more even appearance and to get rid of some of the blackened areas. I  wanted to be sure that none of the husks were too close to the candle. You will want to use caution when lighting it, too. Just a note…be sure to pick it up from the bottom when moving it since the corn is not really attached.

IMG_3626And here it is!  I added it to the fall vignette on my entry table. I love it! And the best thing is that I can keep it on display until Thanksgiving! In case you are wondering, the pumpkin basket in the background came from Hobby Lobby on sale for an unbelievable $5.00! Cute, huh? And the candy corn is for my grandson who just has to have it…even in his Easter basket! lol

IMG_3625 Here’s a final look at my…er…Pottery Barn’s…creation! It was so easy and so much fun to make! And did you know that Indian corn can be kept for years? Just wrap it in a plastic bag and store it in a cool, dry place. Now I have a fall decoration that I can use again and again! Hmmm…maybe I’ll make another one!

Thanks for stopping by! I hope you enjoyed a little peek at my project! Please visit these wonderful bloggers and their beautiful blogs to see what they are up to and to find a list of this week’s participants!
Stephanie Lynn at Under the Table and Dreaming for the Sunday Showcase Party
Susan at Between Naps on the Porch for Metamorphosis Monday
Mary at Boogieboard Cottage for Masterpiece Monday
Sarah at Thrifty Decor Chick for Before and After Monday (first Monday of the month)
Marty at A Stroll Thru Life for Tabletop Tuesday
Beth at The Stories of A2Z for Tutorials and Tips Tuesday 
Kate at Centsational Girl for the Fall Craft Party 
Linda a
t Coastal Charm for Nifty Thrifty Tuesday
Kim at
Savvy Southern Style for Wow Us Wednesdays
Judy at DIY by Design for Sizzle into Summer
Gina at The Shabby Creek Cottage for Transformation Thursdays
Barb at Grits and Glamour for Keep It Simple on Thursdays
Sherry at No Minimalist Here for the Open House Party on Thursdays
Cindy at My Romantic Home for Show and Tell Friday
Courtney at French Country Cottage for Feathered Nest Friday
Honey at 2805 for Potpourri Friday
Diann at The Thrifty Groove for Thrifty Things Friday
Debra at Common Ground for Fabulous Fall Fun
Sherry at The Charm of Home for Home Sweet Home Friday
Roeshel at The DIY Showoff for the Fall Festival
Donna at Funky Junk Interiors for Saturday Nite Special
See you next time! A la prochaine!
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Annie Sloan's "Creating the French Look" Giveaway Winner!

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Annie SloanFirst, I would like to thank those of you who left so many wonderful comments and expressed an interest in my blog! I never would have thought when I started blogging that my little blog would grow as it has…and I owe it all to you, my followers and subscribers! Sooo… I want to take this opportunity to tell you how much I appreciate you all! Thanks for almost three years of bloggy love and support!

Mary Ellen mosaic I am excited to announce the winner of a copy of Annie Sloan’s Creating the French Look…Comment # 31…Mary at Mary’s Meanderings! I was happy to see that it was Mary Ellen since she and I began blogging at about the same time and I have been one of her followers ever since.  And just look at her beautiful home! I know that the projects in the book will fit right into her style. Please be sure to visit her lovely blog and say hello!
Once again, thanks so much to all of you! I wish I had a book for each and every one of you. I appreciate so much all the love and support you have shown me. Merci beaucoup, mes amis! Thanks so much, my sweet bloggy friends! Pin It!

15 September, 2011

Reminder...Annie Sloan's "Creating the French Look" Book Giveaway

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Annie Sloan blogDon’t forget to enter for a chance to win Annie Sloan’s wonderful book…Creating the French Look! It is a fabulous collection of beautiful photos of four different styles of French decor plus 25 projects…both with her chalk paint and with textiles…to help you create the look you want in your own home! The book has gone into print in paperback so the hardback copies like this one are getting scarce! You can enter the giveaway by going here. The giveaway ends Saturday, September 17 at 7:00 pm Eastern Daylight time, so head on over and get in on the fun! Bonne chance! Good luck! Pin It!

11 September, 2011

Annie Sloan's "Creating the French Look"...A Project and a Book Giveaway

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Annie SloanI have been in love with this book ever since I discovered it early this spring…Annie Sloan’s Creating the French Look! It is filled with wonderful frenchy photos and lots of ideas for giving your home that je ne sais quoi that old French homes seems to have…using both paint and textiles.  I ordered it for reasons that are probably not the usual ones since I am not one to paint my furniture. I wanted to read her perspective on the development of French style and was very excited to read what she had to say!

asloanchateau She categorizes French design into four main styles…Château, Country, Provençal and Parisian and includes gorgeous photos to illustrate them. Here’s a peek at Château style with its painted woodwork and gilded touches.

asloancountry1 Country style focuses on details such as terra-cotta tiles, enamelware, baskets and vintage French dishtowels in the kitchen. Gotta love that sink! And aren't those candlesticks a fabulous contrast?

asloanprovencal Perhaps my favorite, Provençal style features matelassé quilts, lavender in pots and as a motif and…further south in Provence…the sunny blues and yellows that we associate with that style. I want that bench!

asloanparisianParisian style is a style all its own…different from the rest of France…and runs the gamut from a sophisticated and refined look, influenced by Coco Chanel, to a more bohemian look, characterized by the artists who lived and painted in Montmartre. Notice the unusual toile with a stripe that gives it a more updated, sophisticated look! Interesting!

asloanmirrorprovence Not only are the styles explained room by room, but projects are included to help you achieve your favorite look. There are 25 projects and those of you who are loving her chalk paint will be happy to know that about 15 or so of them involve using it. I have to say that, although I just can’t bring myself to paint my furniture, I am itching to try my hand at a Trumeau mirror like this one…lovely! There are also tutorials for finishing an armoire with stenciled doors and a gilded Neo-classical table.

asloanchairA generous portion of projects with textiles are included as well, such as this ruffled slip-over pillow cover. Now this one is on my to-do list! :-) There are also tutorials for a Provençal coronet headboard, unlined linen drapes and country pillows.

asloan16provence I am showing you a quick and easy project that you can do even if you are not much into sewing…this Provençal lavender heart sachet!

047 As usual, my able assistant and co-host Baby Kitty stands at the ready with the supplies that he has gathered from my previous projects!

058And here is my version…using scraps from the ticking and toile fabrics from my master bedroom! It was easy and best of all…free! Just cut a heart for a pattern, sew and stuff. I added lavender from my garden so that I could have the scent of Provence close at hand!

Annie Sloan blog And now for the fun part! I would like to give a copy of Annie Sloan’s Creating the French Look to one of my readers as a little thank you for supporting my blog with your visits and sweet comments each week! It is now out in paperback, so the hardback copies like the one I am giving away will get harder to find. You can win in one of four ways:
1. Leave a comment about this post. Be certain to leave an email address if you do not have a blog so that I can contact you if you win!
2. Leave an additional comment telling me that you are a follower or subscriber.
3. Like our page on Facebook (here) and tell me in another comment.
4. Blog about this giveaway or take the giveaway button from the sidebar and post it on your sidebar and tell me in another comment.

That’s four ways to win! Simple, huh? The giveaway will end on Saturday, September 17 at 7:00 pm Eastern Daylight time. The winner will be chosen at random. Be sure to leave an email address or contact if you do not have a blog so that I may let you know if you win! Bonne chance! Good luck!

Thanks for stopping by! I hope you enjoyed a little peek at my project and will join me for the giveaway!  Please visit these wonderful bloggers and their beautiful blogs to see what they are up to and to find a list of this week’s participants!
Stephanie Lynn at Under the Table and Dreaming for the Sunday Showcase Party
Susan at Between Naps on the Porch for Metamorphosis Monday
Mary at Boogieboard Cottage for Masterpiece Monday
Linda at Coastal Charm for Nifty Thrifty Tuesday
Kim at Savvy Southern Style for Wow Us Wednesdays
Judy at DIY by Design for Sizzle into Summer
Gina at The Shabby Creek Cottage for Transformation Thursdays
Jill at French Cupboard for Voilà! French Inspiration on Thursdays
Sherry at No Minimalist Here for the Open House Party on Thursdays
Honey at 2805 for Potpourri Friday
Cindy at My Romantic Home for Show and Tell Friday
Courtney at French Country Cottage for Feathered Nest Friday
Diann at The Thrifty Groove for Thrifty Things Friday
Debra at Common Ground for Vintage Inspiration Fridays
Sherry at The Charm of Home for Home Sweet Home Friday
Donna at Funky Junk Interiors for Saturday Nite Special
See you next time! A la prochaine! Pin It!

Lest We Forget...September 11, 2001

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9-11In memory of all those who died that day and those who have since given their lives to defend our freedom…
May your strength give us strength
May your faith give us faith
May your hope give us hope
May your love give us love
-from Into the Fire by Bruce Springsteen

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04 September, 2011

A Tutorial: Pottery Barn Inspired Frenchy Pillow

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031Somebody stop me! I can’t stop making pillows! Sooo…here’s my latest creation…a Pottery Barn inspired frenchy pillow accented with a bouquet of fabric flowers!

pottery barn1 As soon as I saw this photo on Pottery Barn’s web site, I knew I had to have this one! Only one problem…they don’t seem to sell it! I couldn’t find it anywhere, so I decided to make my own version of it.
(Update: I did find it in the catalog for $39 plus $7 to monogram.)

012 We are working outside this morning since it is a little cooler. However, my co-hostess Miss Kitty seems more interested in the view from the swing set, so I guess I will be going it alone!

page I think theirs is linen, but I used Osnaburg, a cheaper alternative at about $2.50 a yard at Hobby Lobby with a coupon. I cut two 15 x 21 inch pieces for the pillow itself. Then I found a font that I liked for the monogram. I chose this one because it's so...well...vintage French! It's called Paris and only seems to exist on embroidery web sites. I printed it in the size I wanted, colored the back with artist’s charcoal and then traced over it on the fabric. Next, I filled in the outline with fabric paint in a matte white.

042 While the paint was drying, I made the flowers. I actually used linen scraps for these because they seemed to have more body. There were two kinds...roses and daisies. The roses were easy. I just cut a 2 inch wide strip of fabric, folded it in half and tied a knot at one end. The size of the flower is determined by the length of the strip, so you can judge accordingly. Next, I twisted the strip, winding it around the knot as I went. Then I secured it in several places with hot glue. The look is a little shabbier and more vintage-looking than the original, but that’s what I wanted. Sorry there are no photos of the flower in progress, but you have to have both hands working!

043 The daisies were a little more difficult. They also have a shabbier look than the Pottery Barn flowers…but I think I like it better!

page11.)  For each flower, I cut six 1 1/2 inch wide by 3 inch long strips. Next, I rounded the edges and folded them in half.
2.) Then I hand-stitched along the fold, gathering and connecting the petals as I went and then sewed them together at the ends.
3.) Next, I traced around a small cup to create a circle, hand-stitched around the edges and gathered to form a puffy ball.
4.) Finally, I flattened the ball and stitched in a few creases, then attached it to the petals.

031I stitched the pillow, right sides together, leaving a gap at the bottom to insert the pillow form and then turned it right-side out and pressed it. I hot-glued the flowers, following the pattern of the PB pillow as closely as possible. Finally, I inserted the pillow form and hand-stitched it closed. And...taa daa! And best of all...it was free! I already had everything I needed. The scraps of Osnaburg and linen were from previous projects and I had a previously-purchased $2.50 14 x 20 pillow form from Goodwill.

040And here it is in its new home…my Parisian-style bedroom! I think I like it! It adds a really feminine touch and vintage Art Nouveau look to my chair and goes great with my drop cloth reupholstered seat! What do you think? Did I come close to matching the Pottery Barn pillow?

Thanks for stopping by! I hope you enjoyed a little peek at my project!  Please visit these wonderful bloggers and their beautiful blogs to see what they are up to and to find a list of this week’s participants!
Stephanie Lynn at Under the Table and Dreaming for the Sunday Showcase Party
Susan at Between Naps on the Porch for Metamorphosis Monday
Mary at Boogieboard Cottage for Masterpiece Monday
Sarah at Thrifty Decor Chick for Before and After Monday (first Monday of the month)
Beth at The Stories of A2Z for Tutorials and Tips Tuesday
Linda at Coastal Charm for Nifty Thrifty Tuesday
Kim at Savvy Southern Style for Wow Us Wednesdays
Judy at DIY by Design for Sizzle into Summer
Gina at The Shabby Creek Cottage for Transformation Thursdays
Jill at French Cupboard for Voilà! French Inspiration on Thursdays
Sherry at No Minimalist Here for the Open House Party on Thursdays
Honey at 2805 for Potpourri Friday
Cindy at My Romantic Home for Show and Tell Friday
Courtney at French Country Cottage for Feathered Nest Friday
Diann at The Thrifty Groove for Thrifty Things Friday
Debra at Common Ground for Vintage Inspiration Fridays
Sherry at The Charm of Home for Home Sweet Home Friday
Donna at Funky Junk Interiors for Saturday Nite Special
See you next time! A la prochaine! Pin It!
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