It’s just 1 week till Thanksgiving — is your dining room ready for the big event? If not, don’t worry, there’s still time for a guest-impressing makeover. From disguising a past-its-prime dining table to an easy way to give stock white plates a high-end look — we’ve got you covered with five easy project ideas, each with complete step-by-step instructions.
A plain white tablecloth is great for covering up a scratched or discolored tabletop. For a sophisticated look, stitch on a row or two of ruffled burlap or linen:
Enlist help from the kids to glue real or silk fall leaves onto fishing line to create a magical falling-leaf effect over the dining table or buffet:
As I’ve mentioned before, I’m a big fan of finding new uses for old things. I’m the person you see huddled in a corner at an estate sale turning an object this way and that, brow furrowed, envisioning what it could be used for. Take this old wooden toolbox. It was filthy – as all great estate sale finds are — filled with rusty, old screws and nails and only partially painted yellow. A thick layer of dust covered both the box and its contents so it definitely had some age and looked to be sturdily hand-constructed.
I knew it would make a great magazine rack and I knew I had to have it:
Other uses I considered: Filling the 3 compartments with potted herbs in my kitchen; using it to hold rolled towels in a bathroom; or as a caddy for organizing craft or gift wrap supplies.
The $8 price tag seemed fair for its condition — dust, rusty nails and all. Once home, I dumped out the metal bits then gave it a good once-over with the vacuum. I then sanded all the surfaces to remove loose bits of peeling yellow paint and smooth the rough areas. Then, I stained it with an oil-based wood stain (Minwax Early American). BTW, I only use oil-based stains. I know some people swear by water-based because there are less fumes and the dry time is much quicker, but I’ve found that wood better accepts oil-based stains resulting in a richer, deeper color and less streaking.
Upon closer inspection, the toolbox is a mishmash of materials: the end pieces are pine, the sides are beadboard and the handle – I think — once belonged on a broom. You can see in the photo below how the mismatched woods took the stain differently, which for me, just adds to its vintage charm:
So, tell us in the comments below, how have you repurposed items in your home?
Okay, so I know today is Halloween — and believe me, I thought about sharing more Halloween craftiness; but unless you’re looking for pumpkin-carving templates (here and here) or cocktail recipes, the All-Hallows ship has pretty much sailed.
But, in just three weeks (yes, only 3 weeks!) friends and family will be ready to celebrate Thanksgiving. So, if you haven’t started working on your Turkey Day decorations yet, now’s the time.
Start by putting leftover Halloween decorations to good use. Give faux pumpkins a fashion-forward makeover by covering them with trendy upholstery fabrics:
Turn a canvas dropcloth into a custom-fitted dining chair slipcover, perfect if you need to visually unify mismatched chairs:
Halloween is sneaking up on you fast (only 1 week left!) but don’t worry, we’ve got 23 printable (and free!) templates to make throwing a party, spooking up your front yard, treating your favorite ghouls and ghosties and perfecting your pumpkin relatively painless.
Start with our templates and instructions for creepy outdoor cut-outs:
Get the party started with our printable party favors, like this princess crown:
The HGTV.com team recently visited High Point Furniture Market to rub elbows with the design world’s movers-and-shakers and take the pulse of what’s to come. After several days of (blissful!) interior design saturation, I can tell you beyond a shadow of a doubt that antiques are HOT! Think mid-day-sun-baking-asphalt-in-the-middle-of-the-Mojave-desert hot. To capitalize on the trend, most showrooms had a curated, collected-over-time look that mixed their newly-manufactured products with a few vintage-inspired pieces.
Traditional furniture and accessories have always been a Market mainstay. Reproductions of everything from heavily ornamented Louis XVI settees to pale Gustavian commodes have never really gone out of style; but at this Market they were joined by the real deal: centuries-old case goods, lighting, classical sculpture, architectural salvage and quirky, one-of-a-kind accessories.
Here are just a few of the goodies I spied at Market; unfortunately, most of these gems are available only to the trade so I couldn’t include links — hit local antique shops or online sites like V&M, 1stdibs or Ruby Lane to search for similar items.
*burled wood chest: Luisana Designs *early American ship’s compass: Design Legacy
*iron basket pendants: Bobo Intriguing Objects *carnival chick: Design Legacy
When it comes to Halloween pumpkins, I think many of you out there will agree with me when I say that faux can be fabulous. Oh, I know, there are always pumpkin purists who like the squishy sensation of pumpkin innards oozing through their fingertips (You know who you are!) or prefer the look of a real pumpkin or choose real so they can roast the seeds — tasty recipe here, btw — but my personal choice is faux.
Why, you ask? Because, quite honestly, I am a project-aholic. At any given time, I have too many projects started and not enough time to finish them all, so when I buckle down and take the time to bling out a pumpkin, I want my hard work to be displayable for many years to come.
If you’re like me, our Halloween feature is hooking you up with lots of creative ideas for faux pumpkins. Here are 5 of my faves:
For a sophisticated look, add a trendy silhouette:
Coordinate your Halloween decorations to your decor by using scraps of leftover fabric for these decoupage pumpkins:
Shorter days and a crisp chill in the air certify that summer truly has come to an end. Now’s a great time to break out the cozy throws and warm up your home’s decor with a few fall touches.
Take a cue from designer Sarah Richardson and fill vintage vases with autumn-hued flowers:
For many of us, fall also signals the beginning of the holiday entertaining season — Halloween
celebrations are coming up fast. Get ready for the impending arrival of holiday guests by sprucing up areas of your home where guests gather, like the foyer
Image courtesy of Thibaut.
Three weeks ago, I shared ideas for outdoor Halloween decorations. With just a month till the big day, it’s time to move it inside. I’ve gathered 4 spooktacular projects to get you started, and best of all these are projects you can knock out this weekend.
Get the kids to help create these cute mini bat pumpkins:
Whip up a spider web pillow:
If you’ve been checking out the other photos of my house (here, here and here), then you’ve noticed that my style is pretty traditional. It’s not everyone’s cup of tea but it suits me to, well, a T.
For years, as I hit estate sales, flea markets and thrift stores looking for traditional items to fill my first home, a classical bust was at the top of my wishlist, but their high price tags meant I always went home bust-less. So I was thrilled to find this one at an estate sale for the bargain-basement price of….wait for it….50 cents! Yep, that’s right, it was tagged $1 and, as this was the sale’s last day, they had marked everything half price. Best of all, she represents my favorite Greco/Roman deity: Artemis (aka Diana), mythology’s original wild woman — goddess of the hunt, chastity, childbirth, the moon and protector of women.
My bust is plaster and therefore very fragile, hence the long (character-adding) crack across her cheek:
A plaster bust is the least expensive option. My friend and fellow traditionalist, Grant, one-upped me last weekend and scored this lovely pair of bisque (or unglazed) porcelain busts at an estate sale for only $20:
One of the really great things about my job is the chance to preview new products before they make it to stores. Usually it’s a candle or pillow but every now and again it’s something unexpected but totally fun — like these pet costumes from Target!
While I don’t exactly plan on taking my pups trick-or-treating, I couldn’t resist dressing them up for fun. Target’s expanded their already (super!) adorable selection for 2012 so if you haven’t considered decking out your dog before – this may be the year.
Here’s my little girl, Sophie, modeling one of the new costumes that just hit the shelves. She’s a 3-year old Schnoodle (Schnauzer/Poodle) and, as you can tell, she’s pretty jazzed to be mommy’s little piggy:
Not to be outdone, Madeline, my 9-year-old Bichon Frise, strutted her stuff as a cheerleader: