Sunday, December 19, 2010

christmas finishing touches...

When we went to visit my fiance's family for Thanksgiving, my soon-to-be mother-in-law took me out for a fun afternoon of shopping at a some local antique and gift shops. If you're ever in Fort Dodge, Iowa make sure to stop by Fort Dodge Community Apple Orchard. They have the most darling store full of gorgeous home accessories. Plus their fudge is to die for!

I fell in love with this little guy as soon as we walked into the store. And surrounded by the beautiful silver, red and green berry swag, it's the perfect touch of Christmas on our coffee table. 

My fiance's mom pointed this out to me. This very cute skate is just the right shade to match our decor and adds a fun, winter twist to our kitchen. 

Since we live in an apartment building, I wanted to add a little personality to our front door. 

I took a $1.99 wreath from Michael's and wrapped it in a silver leaf garland with green, red and silver berries that match the swag in on the coffee table. 

Combined with our mantel, it's beginning to look a lot like Christmas in our house. :)

Merry Christmas to all!

Monday, December 13, 2010

joy to the world...

my mantel's done. Let Earth receive... oh, you get the idea. I am proud to say, the bane of my existence is finished and I love it!

Ever since I saw the Crate and Barrel catalog this year, I knew I wanted to incorporate silver reindeer. Instead of spending $25 on each reindeer, I found some at Marshall's for $6.99 each. 

To make them a little sturdier (because the mantel is right by the front door and has been known to get jostled when we slam the front door), I crazy glued them to wood planks and spray painted them all matte silver. One a side note, even though I have said I hate spray paint, the metallic matte silver from Krylon is the best. A couple of passes and you're good to go! 

I also spray painted the candleholder, it was a faux leather from World Market but just sturdy enough for the candle. I then took some of the silver berries I used in my wreath and attached them to the candles with silver wire. Again using my silver spray paint to touch up the stems that were green. 

Speaking of the wreath, it is my favorite part! I started with a $2.99 wreath from Michael's and some miscellaneous decorations I picked up for 50% off. I also grabbed wooden letters that spelled JOY. I was going to use them in something else, but then got an even better idea for the wreath. 

I sprayed painted them silver, added some Modge Podge, then dusted them with silver glitter. Then I attached them to the bottom of the wreath with silver wire. Then I put just a few of the decorations I purchased in the top corner of the wrath for a touch of color and sparkle. I chose to stick with the red and silver theme to play off the green I have in my entire living room. 

I just love the final look! 

I have a few more touches to do around the house and then the decorating will be complete. 


Thursday, December 9, 2010

Inspired by young love...

for this project, I was certainly inspired by young love... in two ways. I was inspired by a similar project over at the awesome blog Young House Love - it's a must visit. And the recipient of this gift is a great friend who has found herself a great guy, so I wanted to give her a personalized birthday gift this year.

Customized wine goblets.

This project was so easy and it's a really great way to give someone a gift made just for them. First, I found stemless wine glasses (a must for klutzes like me) made of thick glass.

Then I used a glass paint pen by Vitrea to write fun love quotes on the glasses. I chose one of my favorite quotes from Moulin Rouge and another one that I found online, "Love is friendship on fire."  Isn't that so true?

Once I wrote each quote on the glass, I finished up with a heart to give the set a cohesive look.

Following the instructions that came with the pen (this is important as instructions may vary with different varieties), I let it dry for 24 hours. Then I baked it at 325 degrees for 40 minutes and Voila! a custom set of wine goblets.

A great tip I got from Sherry at Young House Love is to put the glasses in as the oven preheats and leave them in as it cools down. This way you can avoid any cracks that might occur from sudden changes in temperature.

The beauty of these pens is that they work on all types of surfaces. So your options are limitless: bowls, vases, plates, you name it!

ain't love grand...

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Mantel sneak peek...

I am putting the finishing touches on a longer blog post about my holiday decorations, but since you have all been waiting with bated breath to see my mantel (insert sarcasm) - here is a peek.

I am adding a little more height in the middle this weekend after a trip to Marshall's then it should be all complete. Stay tuned for more holiday fun...