Welcome back, spring — I’ve missed you so! The weather here in Knoxville has (thankfully!) warmed, birds are singing and flowers are popping up everywhere. My backyard is abloom with crocuses, daffodils, tulips, forsythia and lenten roses putting on a colorful show. I’m a flower picker from way back. There’s hardly a photo of a preschool me where I don’t have a bunch of wildflowers (and honestly, sometimes just plain weeds) clutched tightly in my chubby fist. So when my yard breaks into bloom, I break out the scissors and head outside to claim some spring color to brighten up the indoors.
I’ve also always been fascinated by that other harbinger of spring: bird’s nests, eggs and baby birds hopping about. Obviously, I’ve no plans to bring those inside — but – in under an hour I can turn aluminum foil, moss and hot glue into a realistic looking bird’s nest that adds a sweet spring touch:
Pretty, huh? It was actually easy to make – get the complete step-by-step instructions here>> The tiny robin’s eggs are easy to craft too, my instructions include how to paint and speckle them.
You can make your nest any size you like. I made this one large enough to work as an Easter basket of sorts:
Easter celebrations are right around the corner — time to banish winter blahs and freshen up indoors and out with a few springy touches. We’ve gathered 25 of our favorite Easter decorating ideas to inspire you. From quick-and-easy centerpiece ideas to a clever way to glam up your Easter eggs to a free, printable Easter banner — we’ve got you covered.
All 25 ideas have the official Easter Bunny stamp of approval (seriously!) but here are my 5 favorites:
Delight Easter guests with this creative place setting idea featuring cute (and oh-so-fluffy!) feathered chicks and candy eggs:
Weather permitting, bring your dining table and chairs outside and enjoy Easter dinner al fresco surrounded by Mother Nature’s changing scenery.
Can you believe it’s only 3 weeks till Easter? Time to hop to it and get crafting! For a fun twist on a traditional Easter basket, try a painted pail instead — it’ll look great filled with treats on Easter morning and is just the right size for stashing toys or craft supplies the rest of the year.
All you need is a metal pail, spray paint and round stickers. Get step-by-step instructions here:
The ribbon roses may look complicated but they’re actually a snap. Wired ribbon and scissors are all you need — no sewing necessary. Learn how to make them here:
So, are you ready for Easter celebrations? No? Well then you’re in luck — check out the project ideas below and keep checking Design Happens for more Easter inspiration to come!
MORE EASTER IDEAS:
Printable Bunny Ears — Free Printable PDF
Hatching Chick Egg
Kids’ Craft: Dyed Easter Egg Animals — Free Printable PDFs
How to Make Cascarone Confetti Eggs
My sister bought a fixer-upper beach house almost two years ago which we’ve slowly but surely been hammering back into shape. In addition to a long list of structural changes, we needed to find a house full of beachy furniture and accessories on the cheap. I hail from a family of bargain hunters/diy-ers so the beach house has been a fun challenge for us.
Before: We started in the main living area which was dark, crowded and just plain sad. Sunny yellow trim did nothing to brighten up the driftwood gray paneling. Unfortunately, you can’t see the pitiful greenish-gold shag carpet which, thanks to leaking windows, had mildewed and actually smelled worse than it looked (hard to believe, I know).
See the Afters
If there’s one thing my frequent estate/garage sale forays has taught me, it’s that no one need ever pay full price for a candle. Ten bucks for a pillar candle? What?! I can’t remember the last time I shelled out more than $1 for one. The only downside to purchasing secondhand candles is that they’re often dented, scratched or are a color that won’t work with your decor. No worries, a little hot glue and twine will cover up a world of sins.
I recently picked up some bargain candles at an estate sale in Knoxville before heading down to my sister’s work-in-progress beach house. I had some jute twine and furniture webbing left over from other projects so I decided to give these 3 thrifted candles a quick beachy makeover — et voila:
Pretty, huh? I paid $2 for the 3 candles and, as I said, all the other materials I already had on hand — but, if I had to buy them, this would be a $10-$15 project. They fit right in with our other beachy bargains:
I know people will ask about fire safety for obvious reasons — twine and upholstery webbing are flammable. First, as with any candle, you shouldn’t leave it burning without supervision — but — I’ve done variations of this project (covering pillar candles in paper, ribbon, bark and even paint) many times and never had a problem. The key is to choose a pillar candle wide enough that the wick burns down the center leaving a wax shell. Don’t try this technique on a narrow pillar or taper candle.
My love affair with stately, opulent marble began in college and my first trip to Italy. Semesters spent in art history class poring over photos of classical sculpture and architecture didn’t prepare me for experiencing it firsthand. By the end of Day One, I was hooked and my quest for Carrara marble began.
The first bit of marble awesomeness I bought was a small bedroom lamp. I’ve since graduated to these big beauties (below). You can find them on ebay, 1stdibs and V&M but be prepared to shell out the big bucks. The lamps themselves are pricey but shipping is the real budget-buster. Plus, because these date mainly to the ’20s, ’30s and ’40s (Art Deco and Hollywood Regency periods), the wiring will need to be replaced meaning more $$.
To score a marble lamp within budget, hit local antique or thrift stores and, of course, estate and garage sales. Before purchasing, carefully check the stone for chips, cracks and discoloration. A good cleaning with mild dish soap and a toothbrush will do wonders, but marble is porous so if the lamp has spent decades exposed to cigarette smoke, regaining its original creamy color will require professional help.
Oh, in case you’re wondering: I paid $35 for the lamp below at an antique store which my dad and I then rewired for around $12, $15 for the drum shade and $18 (a total splurge) for the crystal finial.
How amazing is this bowl?! I found it full of stagnant water and rotted plants at an estate sale. It was so grimy that both I and the seller initially thought it was concrete. After wiping off a layer of black slime (eww!) I could tell it was marble and knew I had to have it. The price: just $10 — a real steal. Of course, I tweaked my back man-handling it back to the car…but….it was totally worth it.
Here you can see the planter’s detail. The marble isn’t polished but the lion’s heads and banded detail are well carved.
With just one week till V-Day, it’s time for some quick-and-easy printables to put the finishing touches on your celebrations. From valentines you can print then embellish, to lettered tags perfect for topping gifts or treats, we’ve got you covered.
These charming printable tags can be cut into any shape to top their favorite sweets:
If an old-school valentine is more your speed, print one of our cute valentines onto card stock then embellish them with self-adhesive rhinestones and ribbon:
Just 2 more weeks till Valentine’s Day, can you believe it?
The stores are stocked full of tasty little bon-bons packed into pretty packages — which are all very tempting but so…well, mass-produced. If you’re looking for an easy way to surprise your valentine with an equally pretty box filled with homemade tasty bon-bons, then I’ve got you covered! This heart-and-arrow takeout box is a snap to craft and dipping fortune cookies into chocolate couldn’t be easier — even for a certified non-cook like me.
Kids will love making these to give to classmates, family friends or grandparents, and your wallet will appreciate that the materials can be picked up, inexpensively, at your local market and craft store.
Ready to get started? Get the complete step-by-step instructions.
As a variation to the heart-and-arrow box, I added square corners cut from paper doilies to each side, then surrounded the lace with self-adhesive rhinestones.
If you’re like me, you’ve *just* finished packing away the holiday decorations and it’s already time to start thinking about Valentine’s Day. While it’s true that time does fly, it seems to go into hyper-speed whenever we approach a holiday centered around sweets. Well, honestly, Valentine’s Day is about letting the people in your life know how important they are to you — but — you get to say it with chocolate. Which is a win-win in my book any day.
Candy and cupcakes are great by themselves, but to take your V-day gift-giving up a notch, you need a cute handmade container — preferably one that’s quick, easy and inexpensive to create. Voila! May I present doily treat cups that are SO easy to make that they’re the perfect Valentine’s Day project for kids.
Honestly, you won’t believe how easy these are — and they’re totally food safe and kid friendly. Ready to get crafting? Well, alrighty then, here are the complete step-by-step instructions plus a few photos to spur your creativity.
Because you use a muffin tin to shape them, they’re just the right size for cupcakes:
Or you can sandwich wired ribbon between the doilies to create a cute handle: READ MORE
Seriously, what did we do before Pinterest? It’s not only a great way for the HGTV.com editors to stay on top of design, craft, entertaining and gardening trends, it also lets us know what you guys are interested in so we can tailor our content to suit it.
So, needless to say, we keep a close eye on the photos HGTV fans pin and the ensuing comments — we love feedback! Wondering which 35 HGTV images were most pinned (and repinned…and repinned) in 2012? Check em out then feel free to pin away to your own boards or leave comments letting us know why that photo is one of your faves.
All 35 images are stars but here are 6 stand-outs:
Not surprisingly, beautiful indoor spaces, like this chic and restful bedroom by Sarah Richardson, topped the list:
Dreamy outdoor rooms were also big. HGTV fans love how John Gidding turned the under-used corner of a deck into a party-ready outdoor lounge:
The chalkboard paint trend is still going strong. Tinted a cheery red, it gives an old dresser new usefulness: