ALL POSTS IN Accessories

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Aren’t these pillows just fantastic? I love how simple and natural botanical throw pillows can be, yet they still pack a heavy stylistic punch. I’ve been searching for the perfect pillow combination for my couch, and these earthy cushions might be just the thing. But which ones should I choose?

botanica lthrow pillows

 Cattail | Fern | Oblong Botanical | Outdoor Botanical | Mixed Leaves | Yellow & Teal | Embroidered Leaves | Yellow Floral | Needlepoint Fern

MORE PILLOW DESIGNS:

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Have you ever found yourself with a collection of clothing or knickknacks that you can’t throw away but have absolutely no use for? For me, that collection (one of many, actually) is a colorful assortment of men’s ties given to me by my grandfather. I couldn’t stand to see them go, but since you can only dress up as Avril Lavigne (circa 2002) for so many Halloweens, I was desperate to find a new use for them. Thanks to a brilliant reader suggestion, I began searching for new ways to use old ties. And man, did I find some goodies!

tie wreath

Most of my finds dealt with repurposing ties for jewelry or other accessories, but this imaginative tie wreath from Good Housekeeping would be the perfect craft for anyone (and any season!).

tie clutch

This useful tie clutch would be an ideal project for someone with a few extra ties and some skill with the sewing machine. What a great way to add a masculine print to a feminine look!

More Men’s Tie Crafts

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There’s nothing better on a hot summer day than some delicious, cold ice cream. It just so happens the time we most want this decadent treat is also the time we most want to fit into our bathing suits. That poses a problem. Luckily, this fantastic Yonanas ice cream maker gives us the taste of ice cream without those pesky excess calories. Just put in frozen bananas or other frozen fruits, and it makes fresh, sweet soft serve. And it’s actually good for you!

yonanas ice cream maker

WANT MORE COOL TREATS? CHECK OUT THESE YUMMY COCKTAIL RECIPES>>

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The heat is up, the schools are out, and I am so ready for a trip to the beach. Unfortunately, my vacation is still weeks away. At least I can pretend I’m on an island getaway with this unique coastal driftwood spoon set. Maybe I was inspired by Allie’s Driftwood Crafts, but there is something about these spoons that I just adore.

Driftwood Spoons

What do you think? Are these sea-worthy spoons calling your name?

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Last Wednesday, I spent all day moving everything I own into my new apartment. Although I loathe moving (my muscles still ache), there’s an air of excitement that comes with knowing you have a fresh, barren space to decorate however you please. As I looked around the blank walls in my new room, I decided I was definitely going to need some new artwork to spice things up. My inner MacGyver knew that with a little Pinterest research and a lot of patience, I could make my own wall art and save some serious moolah. Take a look at my favorite finds:

DIY Ombré Wall Art
I don’t know about you, but I’m definitely still a fan of the ombré trend when it’s done this beautifully. This quirky sign would make a bold statement on an otherwise boring wall, and Sarah of Sarah Hearts says it only took 15 minutes to make.

DIY Gold Leaf Monogram
This DIY Gold Leaf Monogram is perfect because it’s just enough bling – it’s not overwhelmingly gaudy but it has enough pizzazz to make an impact. Check out Brittany’s quick and easy tutorial.
More DIY Wall Art

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These light bulb vases are one of the more perfect decorations I’ve seen in a while. They would look absolutely phenomenal hanging in my kitchen window. I can already picture myself frolicking through the field and picking fresh wildflowers – or at least snipping a few buds from my front yard. Either way, I have no doubt these bulbs will find their way to my home.

Light Bulb Vases

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It’s the year of the octopus, and I am fully on board. Octopus decor has become a bit of an obsession of mine. And why not? There is always one animal print that can be found on everything from doorknobs to dinnerware, and I’m glad it’s finally the octopus. I’m big on animal prints in general, but it’s time to give the birds a rest and let the octopus do its thing (and that thing is being one of the coolest creatures of the sea).

Want more oceanic inspiration?

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If you saw my previous post, you know that outfitting my sister’s beach house with accessories with lots of coastal charm for small $$ was a must. Searching estate sales, flea markets and yard sales for beachy accessories that fit our budget wasn’t exactly easy — but it sure was fun! Here are a few more of  our favorite thrifty finds:

Any Avon fans out there — recognize the green glass fish? Yep, that’s right, it’s actually an old Avon bottle which once held foaming bath oil. The bubble bath is long gone but the little jadeite koi’s charm remains — and for just $1 at a TN flea market? Wrap it up; I’ll take it! Beach House Bathroom Vanity Sink Area

Birdhouses are great — and not just for sheltering birds. We put this one, shaped like a lighthouse, to work as a bookend in our closet-turned-built-in bookcase. Like our other beachy bric-a-brac, this birdhouse has a storied past. My mom bought it at a prison. Yep, a prison — the Maine State Prison in Thomaston. Unique in the nation, the prisoners here are taught real-world skills in upholstery, woodworking and garment making. The money raised by this ingenious program goes toward reimbursing the state for the prisoner’s room and board as well as paying victims’ restitution and prisoners’ child support. Although you can’t shop their store online, you can check out the prisoners’ handiwork and if you’re ever in Maine, drop by.Tight Shot of a Beach House Bookcase

I love zoological prints. They’ve been trending for quite a while … and, as with anything trendy, they can be expensive. Luckily, it’s the internet to the rescue — several sites offer printable scans of public domain prints for free — yes, FREE! Vintage Printable and Graphics Fairy are two of my faves. Just print the images onto a high-quality paper (aka not standard printer paper), add a mat, then pop them into a frame. Beach House Bathroom Framed Vintage Print

Getting crafty with items we already have is another way we save money while filling the beach house with accessories we love. My sister and I bought this wood-framed mirror at an estate sale thinking it would be a good fit for the hall bath. Unfortunately, it was too small. Then my 18-year-old nephew scored this great boat cleat for only 50 cents which inspired us to cover the mirror’s frame in rope then “tie it off” to the cleat. Want to make your own? Get my step-by-step instructions.Beach House Rope-Covered Mirror

MORE BEACH HOUSE MAKEOVERS:
Budget Beach Cottage: Nautical Knick-Knacks
Budget Beach Cottage: Bedside Table Before and After
Budget Beach Cottage: Make a Nautical Rope Mirror
Budget Beach Cottage Before and After: Built-In Bookcase
Budget Beach Cottage Before and After: Kitchen
Budget Beach Cottage Before and After: Living Room
Adventures in Antiquing: Easy Beachy Candle Update

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Are you looking for a way to add a little whimsy to your bedroom decor? I think I’ve found it. These sweet his and hers pillow covers are as cute as can be without being overly sentimental. Trust me – I can always tell these things. For example, when I look at them, I think, “Aww,” rather than my usual, “Oh, please.” It’s a fail-proof test, people!

his and hers pillow covers

PLUS: 10 PILLOW CRAFTS YOU CAN DO YOURSELF>>

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Did you know July is National Ice Cream Month? Yep, an entire month dedicated to summer’s arguably greatest treat. Maybe you’re a FroYo fan [wildly raising my hand over here]. Maybe you prefer full-flavored gelato [mmm, still craving that Pistachio gelato I had in Italy]. Or maybe you stand by the never-fail regulars like strawberry, chocolate, and vanilla [OK, I'm hungry]. No matter your favorite, now is the time to chill out with an ice cream sundae and bring a scoop of childlike sweetness into your summer.

These cool accessories will bring fun and color to an easy desert at your next outdoor party. Just add one thing: You guessed it — ice cream!

ice cream collage

Sundae dishes | Pint holder + scoop | Shake maker | I Scream bowlsChevron spoons | Paper party set | Faux waffle cone | Ice cream maker | Striped scoop

*Originally appeared in the July/August 2013 issue of HGTV Magazine.

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This lovely bag from Better Life Bags is not only gorgeous, it also changes lives. The bags are customizable, and a portion of the proceeds goes to help low income entrepreneurs in developing countries around the world. The company also hires women who would otherwise not be able to get a job. Pretty cool, right? I’m loving this striped laptop sleeve bag.

Better Life Bags

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If you’re a pet parent, like me, you know that you can never have enough storage. Leashes, food, treats, grooming supplies and most importantly — toys — take up a lot of space. My older pup, Madeline, long ago lost interest in stuffed animals but my 3-year-old Schnoodle, Sophie, believes a girl can never have too much stuff.

Initially, I spent big money in pet stores on adorable, interactive toys she would toss up in the air a few times then happily destroy. After several months of this, I stumbled across a big box of 25-cent stuffed animals at a yard sale and haven’t paid retail since. After a thorough cleaning in the washer (hot water with a few drops of bleach) and extended tumble in the dryer, Sophie’s second-hand victims (um…toys) are good as new.

To store her stash, I bought a large wicker trunk, painted it black, added a bronze crest I found (where else) at an estate sale, slid it under a table in the living room and used it to keep Sophie’s toys within easy reach. For years the trunk worked fine but this spring my ability to find bargain toys exceeded Sophie’s ability to destroy them. Luckily, I already had a thrifted basket on-hand that, with a little makeover, would be perfect for containing the overflow: 
Dog-Toy-Storage-Basket-Makeover-Before

The basket was too tall to slide under the side table so removing the handle was the first step and I wanted to give it an antique look (I envisioned an old fishing creel) so it would better blend in. Here’s how I did it:
Dog-Toy-Storage-Basket-Makeover-Step-by-StepSteps: 1-cut ties holding handle in place  2-remove handle  3-thoroughly coat basket with spray stain (I used 2 coats) 4-choose an embellishment, I decided to repurpose an old belt  5-cut off excess leather at the top and bottom  6-attach belt to top of basket using super glue then clamp in place  7-flip basket over and glue a thin piece of wood to the bottom (I just snapped the end off a wood shim)  8-secure belt to wood with thumbtacks or nailhead trim  9-add felt pads to the basket’s bottom to protect your floor

And, voila, my once-plain basket now looks like it belongs in a house filled with antiques:
Dog-Toy-Storage-Basket-Makeover-Before-and-After

Best of all: the easy-to-access toy basket gets the Sophie Seal of Approval. Buh-bye little buffalo, looks like the bell has tolled for thee:
Sophie With a New Stuffed Dog Toy

MORE ADVENTURES IN ANTIQUING:
Adventures in Antiquing: Clinch River Spring Antiques Fair
Adventures in Antiquing: Charleston Antiques Show Part 1
Adventures in Antiquing: Charleston Antiques Show Part 2
Adventures in Antiquing: (Easy!) Beachy Candle Makeover
Adventures in Antiquing: Repurposed Wooden Tray
Adventures in Antiquing: Crushing On Carrara Marble
Adventures in Antiquing: Old Toolbox Turned Magazine Caddy
Adventures in Antiquing: Old Clock Repurposed as a Frame
Adventures in Antiquing: Classical Busts
Adventures in Antiquing: Vintage Avon Bottle
Adventures in Antiquing: Salvaged Molding As Holiday Decor

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I’m not sure how many times I’ve seen something and thought that it was the best thing ever invented, but there have been quite a few. What can I say? I am an optimist! When I saw this beach bag, I couldn’t believe that I’d lived so long without it. After every beach trip, I always end up trying to gently shake sand out of our bags and into a trash can. (I know, I know, this problem would be solved with a yard if I had one.) Enter: The Shake bag. It has a trap door at the bottom that keeps your items in while letting the unwanted sand out. Genius.

shake women's tote

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Father’s Day is this Sunday — are you armed with a gift for dad? No? Well then, we’ve got you covered — from his favorite recipes (hot beer cheese and homemade pretzels — yum!) to fun, free printables and handmade gift ideas like this easier-than-it-looks dresser-top leather valet; whip up a surprise for your dad just in time for Father’s Day celebrations.

Handmade Men's Leather Valet for Father's DayReady to make your own? Get the complete step-by-step instructions>>

Not only is this monogrammed leather valet easy to craft, you probably have most of the materials on hand like an old frame, some batting or foam and a spare bit of leather – this is a great project for upcycling a past-its-prime jacket or purse. The steps are simple, just disassemble the frame then use the backing as a template to cut out a small piece of leather and batting. Place the leather, suede side up, on top of the batting and secure it in the frame with strong tape.Step by Step images for making a leather dresser-top valet for Father's Day

I used an old trick from college printmaking classes to create removable registration marks on painter’s tape that would help me find the tray’s center before placing the adhesive stencils (these things are awesome, btw, you can find them with the glass-etching supplies at your local craft store). Fill in the stencils with a permanent marker and voila — a handy catch-all for dad to keep his keys, change, watch and anything else he needs to grab on his way out the door.Using a Sharpie to Monogram Leather

Crafting this handy DIY gift for dad is easy — but be sure to check out my complete step-by-step instructions for a materials list and lots of helpful tips first>>

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Yesterday I got a little futuristic with the 3D printer porcelain dishes, but today’s Delight? It’s pure science fiction. This espresso maker from Scanomat TopBrewer is controlled by an app on your iPhone or iPad.

EXTRA: HOT KITCHEN TRENDS>>

Personally, I spend a lot of my morning running back and forth from the bathroom (getting ready for work) to the kitchen (making coffee). Imagine if you could just pull out your phone while putting your makeup on, dial up a macchiato and have it be ready and waiting when you made your way to the kitchen? I think I might be in love.

top brewer espresso maker

 

More Goodies from the Kitchen:
Budget Beach Cottage Kitchen Makeover
Hanging Mason Jars for Storage
Color Inspiration for the Kitchen
Coveting This La Cornue CornuFé Stove

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What would you do if you had an empty room, a blank canvas, that needed to be designed and decorated from the ground up? It sounds like a daunting task, but if you have all the elements to build your perfect room, then there’s no reason to not begin right away. HGTV has partnered with home and lifestyle shopping site One Kings Lane to provide all the right pieces and expert tips so you can create your very own in-home getaway. Starting today, May 22 at 11 a.m. EST, you can shop this exclusive sale. Ready to build your perfect room? Let’s get started!

First, start with a solid foundation. Pick out a stylish area rug, statement chair or lucite table lamp that catches eyes from the doorway. Then, began layering on pieces that represent your personality; hang a piece of modern artwork, add texture with soft bedding, throw in patterned pillows for a punch of color or simply add a few charming accents to your side table. Follow tips from HGTV experts and designers to help create a space that represents you.

Check out some of the gorgeous pieces you can purchase today on One Kings Lane. Plus, follow these tips from HGTV experts on using them in your own home.

Build Your Perfect Room With One Kings Lane and HGTVLayer With Accents

Tip: “A decorative object can inspire an entire room. I like to look at it and highlight what I like. Is it the shape? The finish? The color? Hone in on these elements and use them in your design.” — Danielle Colding

Build Your Perfect Room With One Kings Lane and HGTVWake Up Your Wall

Tip: “Choosing art is like committing to a partner. Ask yourself: Would I like to wake up to this piece every morning? Does it make me think? Does it bring me joy? If your answer is yes, then buy it!” — Genevieve Gorder

Build Your Perfect Room With One Kings Lane and HGTVWarm Up Your Floors

Tip: “When choosing a rug, don’t let bold pattern and color intimidate you. When covered with furniture at home, it will look much more toned down.” — Genevieve Gorder

Build Your Perfect Room With One Kings Lane and HGTVBring In History

Tip: “When everything is new, a home tends to fall flat. When you sprinkle in vintage pieces, their character and history immediately sparks conversation.” — Brian Patrick Flynn

Build Your Perfect Room With One Kings Lane and HGTVLayer With Accent Pillows

Tip: “When mixing patterns, one should be large scale, one can be a busy print and one can be colorful. They’ll get along better if they’re not fighting to do the same thing.” — Jillian St. Charles, Vice President of Programming

Let’s talk. What’s a must-have item in your perfect room? A sofa you can sink into? An area rug to warm up cold feet?

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Leather — in spring? Yes, that’s what folks are searching for over at Yahoo!. Even as springtime weather is on deck, people still have leather on their minds when it comes to fashion. Leather handbags, leather jackets, leather pants and even leather satchels for men are all sought-after terms spiking right now on Yahoo!.

EXTRA: BRIANA MOWREY TALKS LEATHER BELT CRAFTS >>

I’m actually one of those people. The satchel I carry for work is looking rather ragged these days — I’m really stoked about these leather carriers over at J.Crew.

What’s your opinion? Should we be talking about leather in April?

(Note: Information From Yahoo! Web Trend Expert Carolyn Clark)

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As you know, spring inspires cleaning of household areas that typically get neglected — like the refrigerator. I’m a single guy whose fridge usually only holds a few condiments and bottled water — and even then mine gets amazingly messy. So if I need assistance, I know those of you with families must! Fridge Coasters can help us.

They are easy-to-clean absorbent liners that come in different sizes to fit high traffic areas of your refrigerator. You place them in your fridge to help absorb drips that would normally dry to the bottom of your bins.

Fridge Coaster

Fridge Coaster

They’re rather cute, too. Who would have thought you could make the inside of your refrigerator look stylish?

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  • #TBT Favorite bedrooms from HGTV Dream Homes past

  • #TBT Favorite bedrooms from HGTV Dream Homes past

  • #TBT Favorite bedrooms from HGTV Dream Homes past

  • #TBT Favorite bedrooms from HGTV Dream Homes past