Ah, the fireplace mantel — a homemaker’s canvas and a stylist’s playground. The mantel has always been an outlet for stylistic expression. New artwork, fanciful mirrors and decorative candles are always welcomed to my mantel. But during the holidays, this versatile shelf space can easily become a rest stop for less-than-spectacular holiday staples.
What do you say we step up our fireplace game this year with some new designs? Here are a few unexpected ways to wow your holiday guests starting with your mantelpiece.
Add Height: Here, watchful owls and glam trees add staggered height alongside more vertically-challenged holiday fare: ornaments and plush toys. Learn how to make a rustic mini tree here.
Light Bright: Sparkling lights of any kind are a quick way to freshen up your mantel, but a DIY marquee sign will really set your style ablaze. These simple instructions will show you how to design your very own, a feat that will turn any guest Grinch-green with envy.
Winter White: When in doubt, hone in light. Bright whites never look dull when paired with new neutrals. See how designer Brian Patrick Flynn decked out this crisp winter mantel. Bonus: Metallics and neutrals go together like Santa and cookies. Make your own gold-leafed log candle holders or mercury glass votives for an extra splash of holiday magic.
Chalk in Spite: No fireplace? No problem! Design the holiday hearth of your dreams in just a few easy steps. Keep this warming accent up all season long for heaps of added cheer. You can even hang handmade stockings or a DIY pinecone garland for an extra kick of kitsch.
Don’t get caught in the same old same old. Fancy up your furnace with these simple steps and your holiday style will be ho-ho-hot!
In lieu of today’s Mood Board Monday, I’m sharing some ideas to warm up those cold hands — DIY advent calendars. I’ll be honest, the only Advent calendar I’ve ever made has been a construction paper chain-link garland. I’m just too impatient to hold out for a treat each day. (Must. Have. All. Treats. Now.)
I know it’s December 1, but it’s not too late to craft a beautiful countdown to showcase in your home. Not sure where to start? Here are some easy-to-create ideas we love. Plus, they’re kid-friendly, too.
For 11 months out of the year, my decorating tastes lean toward contemporary, but in December I favor full-fledged eclectic and traditional holiday pieces that remind me of Christmases past. These needlepoint stockings are just another memento. My entire family got theirs personalized last year and I couldn’t love them more.
You can’t have stockings without stocking holders, and these twig reindeer holders are simple with rustic charm.
I can’t resist this sweet felt garland and Mimi Kirchner-designed ornaments; they’re so perfectly handmade.
This “Merry Christmas” sign is just a classic way to welcome the holiday spirit, just like Hallmark’s annual mischievous kitten ornament. My family has purchased one every year since the series started in 1999 and they each remind us of something different.
Finally, Brian Patrick Flynn‘s handmade pennant tree skirt is a home-hitting holiday accent that adds hip, vintage flair and lots of individual style. The best part is this that it requires no sewing machine — whew!
So get on the holiday-decorating bandwagon with me and let me know what ornaments and tree trimmings you can’t wait to display this year.
My enthusiasm for the ultimate chowdown that is Thanksgiving is overshadowed by one thing: my enthusiasm for Christmas. I always end up wishing Thanksgiving away so I can finally cover every flat surface of my home with trees, garland, lights and oodles of fake snow.
Because I’m just too excited to wait, I’ve already marked the hours on my calendar (usually set aside to sleep off my food coma) for decorating. As soon as the maple-crusted roast turkey is done and I’ve inhaled my pumpkin pie (and just a smidge of apple pie), I’ll begin my annual pilgrimage to the attic to take down every box, bin, bag and cart labeled “Christmas”.
This year, however, I’ve been inspired to do something just a little different. I’ve been scouring HGTV’s Holiday House and handmade holiday collection for a few exciting — and easy — DIYs. Check out some of the projects I’m itching to try.
Marianne’s monogram string art project is an HGTV favorite, but this festive holiday version will fit in well with my home’s rustic accents. I’ve actually had this wooden chandelier on my list for a while. It will make a big impact hanging above my dining table and give me something to brag about.
Ah, trees. I’m always looking for trees, but I hate buying them at the store. But with some Styrofoam cones from the craft store, I can make these upcycled sheet music trees on the cheap. The stocking advent calendar will give my banister (or mantel, I can’t decide) that homey, handmade look I love. But I really can’t wait to hang that vintage light-bulb wreath for a huge dose of my favorite color — bright red.
Finally, for the exterior. We already professed our love for over-the-top displays with Briana’s Defend the Trend. But just like Farima, I’m partial to single-color displays (I’m a warm white kind of guy). I’m forever trying to add twinkle lights to my outdoor display. Those Moravian stars will add such a romantic nighttime glow alongside a reclaimed wood tree and votive candle walkway.
As always, be sure to tell me about your holiday DIY projects and plans!
I came across this cozy cable knit blanket and life was never the same. (That’s going on my “Desperately Want” list.) If I must deal with winter each year, then chic knit throws and chunky sweaters are my keys to survival.
Time flies when you’re busy crafting, DIYing, decorating, and shopping! The holiday issue of HGTV Magazine is hitting newsstands Tuesday, and it’s full of great gift ideas, seasonal decorating inspiration, and of course, lots of handmade projects to keep the elves busy.
Take a look inside this month’s issue at these stories that come with a little bonus. In each piece below you’ll be directed to web-exclusive content that can ONLY be found at hgtv.com. Consider it a little gift from us @HGTVMag.
What do you get for the person on your list who has everything? A DIY gift that’s one-of-a-kind. We share six easy ideas to choose from.
Embroidery hoop picture frames
To say metallics are on trend would be an understatement. And we can happily say they aren’t going anywhere soon. We gilded everything from pillows to pencils in these projects using gold paint. Online readers receive two extra ideas that didn’t make it in the issue.
Gold glitter paint was used on this ampersand pillow
I’m always searching for Thanksgiving and Christmas decor, and it’s nice to see something different pop up. The moment I saw how easy it was to make these festive, no-sew table runners, I knew I had to share them with you all.
Rustic Twig Runner*
It’s difficult to get place mats to play nice with table runners. This runner is the perfect solution because it allows you to drape two table runners horizontally over the table, replacing traditional place mats, while still having a visual focus running the length of the table. Make your own with these instructions >>
*This one is my absolute favorite!
Upholstery Webbing Runner
Doesn’t this tablecloth just feel like fall? I’m usually not a huge fan of burlap, but the weave technique and the black-notch details give it a unique look. The best part about this cloth is that you can easily adapt the size and shape to fit whatever table it will cover. See just what you need to make this one here >>
Everyone loves a good monogram. This no-sew sew table runner with black accents is perfect for more modern holiday decor. You can customize your monogram to be more embellished or more clean and sleek — the style is up to you. Swap out the black for your favorite color, or keep it the same for more drama. Get the step-by-step instructions here >>
I love how this feels whimsical and light and can last all season long, not just for Christmas. Dress it up with pinecones and evergreen earlier in the season, then swap in glass ornaments and faux snow when Christmas approaches. Make your own with these instructions >>
Share your holiday projects and ideas for Thanksgiving and Christmas.
Somewhere between us talking about caramel apples and pumpkin spice lattes it got cold — very cold. I wasn’t prepared for it (as usual). Every year between Halloween and Christmas, I find myself frantically searching for warm sweaters and snow boots. I never even dare look at scarves; I can never decide on one. That’s why I was so excited to hear that The Faribault Woolen Mill Company was teaming up with Target to create an affordable collection of cold-weather accessories that will keep my neck — and my techs — warm and cozy through the winter. (I love when a rhyme comes together.)
Check out some of my favorite pieces from the new collection:
Priding itself on American heritage, Faribault has manufactured woolen goods in the USA since 1865. I always appreciate when a global company, like Target, can help spread the word about a small American brand. The line stays true to the company’s history through classic Americana patterns and colors but opens the company up to new product categories like tablet sleeves and phone cases. While all I want to do is hoard those super warm shawls and throws for myself, I can’t help but think that they would make incredible holiday gifts.
I was alerted by my dear friend that today is National Cat Day because she knows how much I love my little guy.
My handsome cat, D’Artagnan.
This (unofficial) national holiday was started in 2005 by pet and family lifestyle expert Colleen Paige to urge the public to recognize the number of cats that need to be rescued each year, and also to encourage cat lovers to celebrate their own cat(s) for the love and companionship they provide us.
We know you spoil your cat 365 days a year, but give them a little something extra today for #NationalCatDay. Whether it’s a new toy, (extra) tasty treats, quality cuddle time or shelter donations, your cat will love the extra attention. Looking for some ideas? Here are a few to get you started:
Halloween is creeping its way around the corner — just 2.5 weeks left. That means it’s time to plan and organize all of my recipes and decor ideas. Erica’s last post about black walls has me dreaming of how I want my house to look for Halloween.
So take a look-see at what has made my Halloween party to-do list so far.
I always try to stretch the mileage on my seasonal decor, which is why I’ll always go for items like the metallic pumpkins. While they fit right in for Halloween, they are still good up until Thanksgiving. Plus, they are shiny and we love shiny things. The pumpkin spice punch, brownie, and layer cake are also reusable holiday recipes — and trust me — you can never have too much candy corn. My mom always makes the best haystacks. Last Christmas I made about 400,000,000 of them with her. I might get her help on the mummy haystacks. But the pallet jack-o’-lantern is so cool that I just have to make one. I know I only have 2.5 weeks to use it, but those are 2.5 weeks that I’ll have the best jack-o’-lantern ever. And how cool does that Mr. Hyde potion look? I CAN’T WAIT.
I’ll be counting down the days — and staying pretty busy — with all of these recipes and decorations I have to make. It’s almost more fun than the actually holiday (almost).
What potions and party favors will you be serving up on Halloween this year? Have you found any creep, crawly decor ideas? Let me know and share them here!
My infatuation with rose gold began about 2 years ago when I received my very first Miansai bracelet as a Christmas gift. It was heavy and masculine with a warm rose gold hue. It seems to go with everything that I wear, unlike regular yellow gold, and provides a bit more excitement than silver (nothing wrong with silver!). Now, rose gold is popping up everywhere with designers and brands using it in unexpected ways. It was a huge design trend for a while, but I believe the warm metallic is here to stay, at least in small accents.
The Cartier ring is by far my favorite, but the Samsung watch is actually converting me into a wearable-tech guy. The copper pot set from One Kings Lane is a steal: you get 4 different sizes from a great quality brand. With the holidays creeping up on us, I think the dog bowls and monogrammed mugs will make perfect gifts, they are so unusual!
What do you guys think about rose gold? Is it too much — or just enough? Let me know what you think and share with me your favorite finds.
Did you know it’s the perfect time to start thinking about birdhouses? Many birds won’t use a house until it has a weathered look, so some experts suggest getting birdhouses up by late summer or early fall in preparation for the spring. Even if you’re not an avian enthusiast, the charming little boxes can be used in so many other contexts. Take a look at these birdhouse decor ideas and get inspired to feather your nest with some of these structures.
Credit: Janell Beals
Birdhouses –> Fence Flair
Give an old, drab fence some pizzazz by adding a collection of decorative birdhouses. This idea from Janell Beals works well with a mix of different colors, shapes and sizes. Check out her tutorial to see how you can copy the look.
I’m not sure where the summer went (seriously, where did it go?!), but it’s getting to be time for pencils, books and teachers’ dirty looks, aka back to school. Whether you greet the school year with dread or excitement, the upside is that school items and supplies offer plenty of DIY decor inspiration. Take a look at these crafty ideas that totally make the honor roll.
Did you like my post about musical instrument design ideas? Then I’m betting these sheet music crafts will be up your alley, too! If you’ve got old sheet music that hasn’t seen love since your childhood piano lessons, consider turning it into something you can enjoy and admire every day. (Of course, you could always keep an eye out for old sheet music at flea markets, too.) If you object to repurposing the original sheets for crafts, you can easily make copies on similarly-colored paper.
You guessed correctly if you chose option B. What used to be a tarnished bar cart is now a modern treasure. With a little elbow grease, Catherine Sheppard of The Life Styled transformed this flea market find into an antique focal point.
We randomly chose one person from the comments, and Cindy is the winner of a burlap Christmas stocking and Mrs. Meyer’s multi-surface cleaner in Iowa pine scent and dish soap in cranberry scent. Congrats!
Check back next Wednesday to decorate a new space.
Can you guess which bar cart belongs in this entryway?
Type A, B or C in the comments section, and we’ll reveal the answer tomorrow. One lucky winner will win a burlap Christmas stocking and Mrs. Meyer’s multi-surface cleaner in Iowa pine scent and dish soap in cranberry scent — perfect for Christmas in July! You don’t have to guess correctly for a chance to win.
You may only comment once to be considered, and you don’t have to purchase anything to win; a purchase will not increase your chances of winning. Odds depend on total number of entries. Void where prohibited by law. Only open to legal residents of 50 U.S., D.C. or Puerto Rico, and you must be at least 18 years of age to win. All entries (comments) must be entered between 10:00 a.m. ET on July 16, 2014 and 12:00 p.m. ET on July 17, 2014. Subject to full official rules. By leaving a comment on the blog, you acknowledge your acceptance to the Official Rules. ARV of prize: $15. Sponsor: Scripps Networks, LLC, d/b/a HGTV, 9721 Sherrill Boulevard, Knoxville, TN 37932.
UPDATE: This poll is now closed. Thanks for spending Christmas in July with HGTV Magazine.
Get a head start on the holidays! Browse the Christmas in July hub where our hgtv.com editors have found the best ideas for handmade gifts and decorations, kids’ crafts, greeting cards and more. But first, take a second to answer the question below. HGTV Magazine is already prepping for this year’s December issue and asks for your input on the long-standing Christmas tree debate: real or fake?
So when she came to our Color of the Month meeting proposing Stripes as the July color choice, we weren’t surprised, but we were intrigued. After all, stripes are practically synonymous with summer: Think crisp, preppy rooms and nautically-inspired decor. The kicker? More than half of our color team were actually wearing stripes during the meeting — a sure sign that Marianne’s pitch is perfect for the height of the season. Bring on the stripes!
Image Courtesy HGTV Magazine
The wonder of stripes is their versatility. Depending on the color combinations, they can be everything from playful to classically preppy. Vertical stripes in coral, white and blue look playful when painted in varying widths, as seen in HGTV Magazine, while navy and white horizontal stripes in this kids’ room create a soothing, symmetrical look.
It’s no secret that I’m the resident cat lover here at HGTV.com. Don’t get me wrong, I adore dogs. But when I adopted my four-year-old cat, D’Artagnan, I became enamored by these sassy, independent animals. As someone who was raised with canines, I’m still figuring out my cat’s unique personality every day. I’ll tell you this, though: I’ve raised one cuddly cat.
But, as all pet owners know, creating a pet-friendly home is a key element to your pet’s happiness and your sanity. Here are some ways you can keep your home chic, stylish and comfy for your pets, too.
Buy washable fabrics. Pets have accidents. It’s just part of it. So, protect your bed by using duvet covers, cotton bed sheets and other durable fabrics that can be washed regularly.
Slipcovers FTW! Until you’ve deterred Fluffy from using your beloved sofa as a scratching post, a durable slipcover will definitely do the trick. You can also look into purchasing a sofa made of Ultrasuede, a stain-resistant, machine-washable microfiber your cat will adore.
Previously on Designer MacGyver…we’ve covered wrapping paper and newspaper, but surprisingly, wallpaper hasn’t made the list. I say “surprisingly” because I am a wallpaper fanatic and my bio won’t let you forget it. I don’t actually own the apartment I live in now, so I’ve had to resort to more temporary solutions there. Rest assured that once I own, I’ll be armed (with as many rolls as I can afford) and dangerous (with these genius uses for wallpaper other than on walls, obvs).
Sherry and John Petersik, excerpted from Young House Love (Artisan Books), copyright 2012