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Editors’ note: Today, we’re welcoming wedding designer and HGTV.com contributor Michelle Edgemont to share her wedding-planning savvy in a new series we’re calling Wedding Survival Guide. Recently engaged? Read on for advice from Michelle, and from couples who have planned a wedding — and lived to tell the tale.

You’re engaged…now what? You’ve shared the news with friends and family, so now it’s time to start some serious wedding planning. It can be very overwhelming to plan what is probably the biggest party of your lives. Learn from those who’ve done it before by consulting with newlyweds. A few of my past wedding design clients have kindly shared their tips for what to do first after the proposal.

DECIDE WHAT’S IMPORTANT

brooklyn bride and groom at liberty warehouse

Hart and Sol Photo

Liz and Tim were married in an open loft venue, Liberty Warehouse, in Brooklyn. Liz says, “Our decisions were based on what had been important to us throughout our ten year relationship. Brooklyn was where we fell in love and lived together in our first apartment.” Use her advice and make a list of anything and everything that is important to you both or had a huge impact in your relationship. This brainstorming session can help you decide what city to be married in.

CHOOSE YOUR EVENT SIZE

modern indian wedding ceremony

Our Labor of Love

In a multicultural event, Nisha and Brendan were married in a modern, Hindu ceremony. “We both really wanted an outdoor ceremony. Afterwards, we moved the party to a beautiful indoor reception space. The space perfectly accommodated our number of guests,” Nisha says.  Nisha makes a great point here about guest count. The number of loved ones you invite is going to make a huge impact on your ceremony and reception venue choices. Some spaces can’t hold over 200 people, while others might have minimum guest counts on weekends that wouldn’t allow for small weddings. Knowing a rough guest count before you start your venue search is key in finding the right event space for you.

DON’T OD ON INSPIRATION

colorful modern indian wedding reception

Our Labor of Love

Nisha, an Indian bride planning a colorful, whimsical wedding, loved looking at inspiration online right after she was engaged. A few months into the design process, she realized it was better to stay true to what they wanted as a couple instead of constantly looking at all of the wonderful wedding images online. I love this advice! After you get engaged, spend some time getting familiar with classic wedding decor by browsing blogs and magazines. Then, discuss what types of decor are important with your fiance. Make a list, stick to it, and cut your wedding blog browsing down to once a week in order to avoid getting overwhelmed with inspiration.

REAL TALK: TIME TO BUDGET

pink escort cards

brklyn view photography

Ah, the budget. This step is the most uncomfortable and the most important. How much money do you have to spend? Whether you are eloping or having a 300-guest black tie affair, your wedding is going to cost at least the amount of your marriage license. Decisions cannot be made in the planning process unless you know how much money you have. Talk with your fiance and both sets of parents about the amount of cash everyone is able and willing to contribute. No one likes to talk about money. It might be awkward. Someone might get upset/angry/disappointed. But, when the conversations are over, you’ll have an amount to work with. It could be $5,000 or $50,000. Either way, you’ll know where you stand, and what you can afford.

You’ll be glad you spent the time thinking about what you really want and can afford when the process gets rolling.

So tell me: Which of these steps have you taken? What wedding questions are stumping you? I’m here to help.

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Let the kiddos get in on the food prep this Easter with these fun, easy and super adorable recipe ideas that require minimal ingredients and no baking. Plus, each recipe contains either fruits, dairy or protein presented in a fun way for little ones with picky palates.

BUNNY PARFAIT

Bunny Parfait

Photo and recipe courtesy of Yoplait

Hop into spring with a tasty parfait made with layers of just three simple ingredients.

Yield: 1 parfait

  • 1 Yoplait Original French Vanilla Yogurt
  • 1 small can sliced peaches or fresh sliced peaches
  • 1 handful Annie’s Honey Bunny Grahams

1. Layer yogurt and peaches in a bowl.

2. Top with a handful of bunny grahams.

HATCHING CHICK EGG

Hatching Chick Egg for Easter

Eggs — hard-boiled, deviled, dyed and plastic — are an Easter staple. But you can take a simple hard-boiled egg to the next level with a few simple materials and ingredients. Seriously, this is adorable.

Get the step-by-step instructions >>

More Fun Bites for Kids

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You’re never too old to decorate Easter eggs! So, while the kids are having their fun, you can have yours — cocktail in hand.

CHERRY PEEPS COCKTAIL

Cherry Peeps Cocktail Recipe

Photo and recipe by Michelle Edgemont

An unexpected take on a dessert cocktail, this creamy beverage is garnished with your favorite Easter treat — Peeps!

Get the recipe >>

DEW DROP COCKTAIL

Easter Dew Drop Cocktail Recipe

Photo and recipe courtesy of Jung Lee and Clos du Bois

Serves One

  • 4 ounces Clos du Bois California Chardonnay
  • 2 ounces gin
  • 2 ounces grapefruit juice
  • 1-2 ounces simple syrup
  • grapefruit slice, for garnish

1. Create a simple syrup by adding water and sugar to a small saucepan; bring to a boil. Stir until the sugar completely dissolves, then remove pan from heat.

2. Shake all ingredients with ice, and serve in champagne coupes or vintage tea cups. Finish with a grapefruit slice.

4 More Spring Concoctions to Try

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In the latest High/Low Challenge we asked you to spot the price difference between these two fun outdoor seats. The correct answer was Left: high, Right: low. Were you right? The winner of our HGTV Magazine prize package for May will be chosen and notified by email.

high low may answer

Were you correct?

An outdoor-safe seat cushion makes this curvy chair on the left more comfy. The back of the chair on the right was inspired by the shape of a traditional Amish barn. Both great choices, both great buys. For shopping information on these powder-coated steel and iron chairs, check out the newest picks on our High/Low List in the May issue of HGTV Magazine — out Tuesday!

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I love celebrating Easter with a delicious brunch that celebrates sunshine, flowers and all things spring, but I’m terrible when it comes to planning ahead! I’ve been thinking about throwing an Easter brunch for my friends this year, and was looking for some tablescape inspiration (because like any true Southern gal who entertains, I take my table settings seriously), when I remembered a beautiful yet casual brunch setting by ladies at Caitlin & Caitlin from the sophisticated Los Angeles loft that was the winning entry in our Fresh Faces of Design contest.

Caitlin McCarthy and Caitlin Murray aren’t just a talented design duo; they also know how to entertain in style! The best part of this setup is that it’s elegant while managing to be casual and easy to pull together at the last minute, so it’s just the kind of inspiration I need to get my act together.

Loft Kitchen and Dining Room

Design by Caitlin & Caitlin

The dining area is located in a pass-through between the kitchen and bedroom of Caitlin McCarthy’s 725-square-foot loft located in a 100-year-old former office building. This spot was once a bathroom, and the tile floor below the table is original to the space.

Dining Table Made From Garden Trellis

Design by Caitlin & Caitlin

The table is made from a garden trellis set on a table base and topped with glass cut to fit the frame. Rather than opting for perfectly matched chairs, Caitlin McCarthy collected a variety of chairs she loved in various styles and colors. This look can work whether the mismatched look is intentional or not, which means it’s easy to accommodate as many friends at brunch as you can given your space and number of chairs.

Brunch Table Setting

Design by Caitlin & Caitlin

I absolutely love this table setting. It’s another example of how items don’t have to match one another, as long as they complement each other. And see that flatware? Looks like hints of last month’s Color of the Month!

Brunch Decor and Grapefruit Cocktail

Design by Caitlin & Caitlin

Host the Perfect Easter Brunch

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Yes, I am an adult with no children who still decorates eggs every year. Why? It’s a blank canvas with endless possibilities, and there are always new techniques to try.

So hard-boil up a dozen or use an egg blower and a dremel to drain the eggshells without cracking them, allowing you to keep these decorated eggs for years to come. Then, try one of these fun new ways to dress up your eggs.

GET PERFECT HARD BOILED EGGS EVERY TIME >>

GOLD-DIPPED EGGS

These industrial-inspired eggs are perfect for industrial-modern design lovers! Abby Larson, Founder/Editor of Style Me Pretty Living, used grape juice and vinegar to create the cool, concrete-inspired effect. Stop there for a version you can turn into egg salad — or add a gold accent for a decorative-only egg with lots of sparkle.

Gold Dipped Marbled Eggs

Image courtesy Abby Larson/Style Me Pretty Living

MATERIALS

  • grape juice
  • white vinegar
  • white eggs
  • glass or metal bowl
  • gold paint

DIRECTIONS

Step 1: Hard boil or blow out your eggs. (If hard boiled, keep in mind these eggs will not be edible later. If blown out, you will need to place something on top of the bowl to keep the eggs covered in the dye).

Step 2: Mix equal parts grape juice & vinegar in a bowl, enough to submerge your eggs. Place eggs in the bowl and leave overnight.

Step 3: The next day, remove eggs from the bowl and rinse off. Use a paper towel to rub away the foamy layer, revealing the marbled surface.

Step 4: Dip egg partially into a cup of gold paint. Place upside-down in egg carton to dry.

Step 5: Place in a bowl on your Easter table to enjoy!

Gold-Dipped Marbled Easter Eggs From HGTV.com

Image courtesy Abby Larson/Style Me Pretty Living

4 MORE EASTER EGG DIYS

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Congratulations to the giveaway winner, Ashley!

Welcome to Spring Essentials, a Design Happens mini-series where we’ll highlight our favorite products to help you get your home ready for spring. The fourth installment: Kitchen tools that will help you turn spring produce into a delicious feast. See our product picks, then enter for a chance to win one of these tools for your home.

Felicia has you digging in the garden in style, so you’re going to need to do something with all the fresh greens, asparagus, peas and other fresh spring produce that sprouts from your soil. Using the right kitchen tools makes a world of difference in making cooking with fruits and veggies easy and enjoyable. Grab these tools and get cooking so that you can take advantage of the beautiful spring bounty!

Spring Kitchen Tools 2015

1. Chef’n SpinCycle Salad Spinner: Give your greens and herbs a good wash to get them fully clean, and then rid them of excess water to keep them crisp with this handy salad spinner. The Chef’n SpinCycle comes in a cute spring green color and lays flat for handy storage. ($25)

2. KAI for Williams-Sonoma Chef’s Knife, 8-inch: Every good chef has a quality knife, and a chef’s knife is the perfect workhorse for slicing, chopping and dicing just about anything — especially spring produce. The 8-inch KAI for Williams-Sonoma Chef’s Knife comes in a bright, bold red that is perfect for spring. ($19.95)

3. Cuisinart MultiClad Pro Triple-Ply Stainless Universal Steamer With Lid: Steaming is one of the healthiest and easiest ways to cook fresh produce, and it’s a great way to make veggies easier to eat without losing their bright flavors. This universal steamer from Cuisinart fits inside 2-, 3- and 4-quart saucepans so that you can choose the cooking vessel that works best at any given time. ($34.99)

4. Full Circle Fresh Air Compost Collector: If you’re cooking with veggies and fruits, you’ll end up with scraps which you’ll want to compost and use to add nutrients back to your garden (circle of life!). The Full Circle Fresh Air Compost Collector allows oxygen to easily flow through your organic waste, reducing odor and preventing fruit flies. A win for everyone! ($29.95)

5. Kate Spade New York Melamine Collection: When you’re done preparing your meal, how about serve your delicious culinary creation to friends and family on the back patio? The cute dishes in the Kate Spade New York Melamine Collection come in fun colors with festive sayings and won’t shatter if dropped. ($14-$40)

Are you ready to start cooking? One lucky Design Happens reader will win a Full Circle Fresh Air Compost Collector, just in time for Earth Day. 

To enter for a chance to win, leave a comment below. This giveaway’s question: What spring vegetable or fruit have you been looking forward to eating the most?

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 4:00 p.m. ET on April 2, 2015 and 6:00 p.m. ET on April 3, 2015. Subject to full official rules. By leaving a comment on the blog, you acknowledge your acceptance to the Official Rules. ARV of prizes: $30. Sponsor: Scripps Networks, LLC, d/b/a HGTV, 9721 Sherrill Boulevard, Knoxville, TN 37932.

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Truth time: If DIY were a grade in school I probably would have already been left behind, though not for lack of enthusiasm!

I really want to be a DIY ninja but knowing my own limitations, I try to remind myself that I need to stay focused on projects that don’t leave me in a puddle of tears on my living room floor with glue gun cartridges stuck in my hair. This is why I was so excited when I had a recent brainstorm and decided I wanted to nail a rug to my wall.

How to Hang a Rug on the Wall

As a renter, I’m always looking for easy ways to upgrade my home without putting my security deposit in jeopardy. Luckily, this rug-nailing bonanza fits the bill perfectly. It’s easier than removable wallpaper (no seams to line up!), doesn’t involve paint (woo hoo!) and can drastically change the look of your space.

All you need is a rug, some nails and a hammer. (You can also do this project with screws and a drill.) Here’s how:

1. Choose a rug that will work well with your space. I was hoping to zhush up my bathroom and wanted to go bold, so I chose a brightly colored cotton rug. It’s best if you can find a thinner rug that’s easier to attach to your wall. I would also recommend choosing a rug that’s as close as you can get in size to the space you need to fill, but err on the side of slightly larger.

2. Decide how you’d like to position the rug on your wall. Originally, I wanted to cover my entire wall (and, in fact, purchased two rugs so that I could). However, once I got the first rug up, I decided I loved how it looked, so I ditched my plan for covering the whole wall. Hold your rug up and see if you prefer to start at the ceiling level, the floor level or perhaps hang it in the middle of the wall like it’s a piece of art.

3. Start nailing the rug to your wall. If your rug is slightly larger (as mine was) you can fold it back a bit until it’s as wide or as tall as you  need it to be. You can nail the rug to the wall all around the perimeter. Depending on the fabric of your rug, you might need more or fewer nails to keep it up there. You will also likely need someone to help you hold the rug in place as you hammer all the nails in.

That’s it. Seriously!

Have you ever tried this wall hanging technique? Or, what art alternatives have you tried? Let us know in the comments below.

Here’s another method you can try: How to Turn a Rug Into a Wall Art Tapestry

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You guessed correctly if you chose option B. Design Star Meg Caswell  transformed this enclosed patio into a bonafide backyard complete with astroturf, potted plants and topiaries. A tropical outdoor bar cozies up to the grill, while seating comes in many shapes and sizes: woven floor cushions, a hammock or an extra-long outdoor sectional.

Outdoor Patio With Astroturf

We randomly chose one person from the comments, and Jacob D. is the winner of a $100 gift card from Zazzle.com. Congrats!

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high low may

Can you spot the price difference?

The latest High/Low Challenge features a pair of bright orange chairs that are screaming to be a part of a backyard party or to sit on a sun-drenched patio. Both share fun geometric designs, but one is priced higher than the other. Can you guess which seat is ‘High’ and which is ‘Low’? If so, you could be the lucky winner who takes home an HGTV Magazine prize package filled with a yoga mat, tote bag and the latest May issue. To enter, leave your answer in the comments below (i.e. Left: high, Right: low or vice versa). You must answer correctly for a chance to win. And hurry! You have until tomorrow at 2 p.m. to enter.

NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. Open to legal residents of the 50 United States and D.C., age 21 or older. Void where prohibited. Odds of winning depend on number of entries received.  Sweepstakes ends at 2:00 p.m. ET on April 3, 2015. Full official rules are available here. Sponsored by Scripps Networks, LLC dba Home & Garden Television, 9721 Sherrill Boulevard, Knoxville, Tennessee 37932.

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This year, I’m in charge of dessert for my family’s Easter dinner. Sure, there’s a lot to love about bunny-shaped treats and classic coconut cakes, but this year, I’m thinking pizza. Egg-shaped fruit pizza, to be exact! Just look:

Easter Dessert Recipe - Egg-Shaped Fruit Pizza
This impressive-looking dessert is deceptively simple thanks to store-bought sugar cookie dough and an easy-to-make lemony whipped cream topping. Watch how it’s done.

YouTube Preview Image

See, even non-bakers can totally do this! Have fun by swapping in your favorite fruit and creating your own custom design. It’s a giant blank canvas. The best part: It can double as an Easter centerpiece…until your family gobbles it up, that is.

What are you serving on your Easter table this Sunday? Tell us about it in the comments below. 

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Congratulations to the giveaway winner, Jennifer H.!

Believe it or not, Easter is the second highest candy-consuming holiday in America — right behind Halloween, of course. It’s no wonder, with several popular candy brands featuring Easter editions every year. Who wouldn’t love egg-shaped chocolates covered in pastel-colored candy coating? If you aren’t quite sure which candy to fill your kids’ (or your own) baskets with this year, we’ve listed our favorites you can buy — or if you’re feeling ambitious — DIY!

DIY: Chocolate Coconut Candy

These white- and dark-chocolate covered coconut balls have a delicious filling made with real raspberries. Place them in your kid’s Easter basket, or wrap them in cellophane for guests to enjoy after Easter brunch.

Chocolate Coconut Candy

Get the Recipe>>

MORE CANDY TO BUY OR DIY

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Congratulations to this week’s winner, Jacob D.!

Can you guess what seating belongs in this outdoor room?

Decorate This Space

Type A, B or C in the comments section, and we’ll reveal the answer tomorrow. One lucky winner will win a $100 gift card from Zazzle.com. You don’t have to guess correctly for a chance to win.

Choose A, B or C

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 April 1, 2015 and 12:00 p.m. ET on April 2, 2015. Subject to full official rules. By leaving a comment on the blog, you acknowledge your acceptance to the Official Rules. ARV of prize: $100. Sponsor: Scripps Networks, LLC, d/b/a HGTV, 9721 Sherrill Boulevard, Knoxville, TN 37932.

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As you guys have probably figured out by now, I just love a pretty dining table. But let’s be real: who can afford to completely trick out their table for every major holiday? I certainly can’t. With this in mind, I set out to create a fresh, pretty Easter table setting made from materials you can find at the grocery store for literally just a few bucks: Coffee filter flowers.

Make Your Own Coffee Filter Flowers

Want to make this project for your Easter table? Click through to learn how to make this project.

DIY Coffee Filter Flowers

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The recent arrival of spring can mean only one thing: Easter with all its colored-egg-and-chocolate-bunny-awesomeness is right around the corner. And, what do you need to hold said eggs and candy? A cute Easter bucket, of course!

Handmade Feathered Chick Easter Bucket

Make your own with our step-by-step instructions >>

Yes, I said “bucket” not “basket.” Readily available at your local hardware or craft store, a bucket is a great stand-in for a traditional Easter basket because its smooth sides allow for all kinds of crafty creativity. Plus, it’s just the right size for stashing your kid’s stuff — like small toys or art supplies — the other 364 days of the year.

Easy and inexpensive (you just need a bucket and a few craft-store materials), this is one project you can tackle while watching a favorite show. Get crafting with these step-by-step instructions:

Handmade Feathered Chick Easter Bucket

Looking for more original Easter ideas? From recipes to egg-dyeing tips to easy decorating ideas, we’ve got you covered. Just hop on over to HGTV’s Easter Central, then be sure to share your Easter ideas and tips with us in the comments below.

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Something must be in the water around these parts. Between Marianne’s nightstand and Liz’s upcoming dresser project, it seems like everyone around here has caught the DIY furniture bug. Our readers are no exception.

Since Liz is still deciding how to transform her own bedroom dresser, we rounded up some favorites from the #HGTVmakeover hashtag on Instagram to keep the creative juices flowing.

We’re loving the trend of colorful custom furniture to add fun and personality to a room. I feel like we all have a piece like this one from @Heather_Hill5 taking up space in a garage. Her finished gray dresser is another example of how far a coat of paint and new knobs can go in reviving a piece of furniture that would otherwise go unnoticed.

Photo courtesy of Instagram user @heather_hill5

Logan from @thestylishpeach shares the details of this mid-century modern makeover on her blog. In her case, the original dresser had too many scratches and stains for it to work as-is. A few smart and trendy choices make this piece look like it came straight from a fancy furniture show room.

Photo courtesy of Instagram user @thestylishpeach

Ombre is a trend that’s still making the rounds on window treatments, decorative art and focal walls. We especially love it on the drawers of a dresser, seen below in a lovely blue-gray hue by @beautymark_furniture.  Want to make your own ombre dresser? We’ll show you how.

Photo courtesy of Instagram user @beautymark_furniture

More DIY Dressers We Love

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Congratulations to the giveaway winner, Stephanie G!

Welcome to Spring Essentials, a Design Happens mini-series where we’ll highlight our favorite products to help you get your home ready for spring. The third installment: Spring organization products that will make the most of your home’s storage space. See our product picks, then enter for a chance to win some supplies to organize your home.

We’ve shared our favorite cleaning products with you, so now it’s time to get organized. I absolutely do not like organizing, which is a little embarrassing for me to admit. I can never quite get a good grasp on how to be organized or what products to use to maximize storage and functionality. I corralled my most organized friends to help me come up with a list of products they can’t live without and that make organizing a fun less daunting task.

Fun Organizing Products

1. Mark Brothers Cable Labels: Identify your cords in the cutest, quirkiest way with these little clip-on guys. Each clip-on comes with a label sticker, so you won’t be left guessing which cord belongs to what electronic. ($14.00)

2. Jonathan Adler Collapsible BinsStore your clutter in style with these boldly-patterned storage bins by Jonathan Adler. The designs will transform your shelves into a statement piece, and you can collapse them when not in use. ($20)

3. Fox Paper Clip Holder: Made of solid mahogany wood, this adorable creature is a fun addition to your home office desk. Its magnetic body keeps paper clips easily accessible in one area, so you don’t take up an entire drawer. ($19.95)

4. Grocery Bag Dispenser: I’ll admit, I keep my grocery bags in a narrow cabinet in my kitchen. A grocery bag dispenser would be much more practical since it fits nicely in a pantry or storage closet, and only requires tape or screws to mount on the wall. It’s easy to use and saves storage space, not to mention, its sleek design works with any style home. ($10)

5. Rakku Shoe Wheel: It may not look like it, but this wheel can store up to 30 pairs of shoes without taking up too much precious floor space. I imagine myself spinning the wheel every morning, and picking a random pair of shoes to plan my outfit around. That’s one fun way to start the day! ($71)

6. Hair Accessories Organizer: By the time I get ready in the mornings, it looks like a tornado ripped through my bathroom. I need several hair products to tame my unruly waves, so this all-in-one hair accessories organizer would be perfect for those in the same boat. It even comes with an outlet, so you can directly plug-in your hot tools.

Are you ready to get organized? We’re offering one winner HGTV office supplies (includes notebooks, pens and push pins) to help organize your home office. 

To enter for a chance to win, leave a comment below. This giveaway’s question: What’s your favorite go-to product or tip that helps you stay organized?

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 March 30, 2015 and 12:00 p.m. ET on March 31, 2015. Subject to full official rules. By leaving a comment on the blog, you acknowledge your acceptance to the Official Rules. ARV of prizes: $30. Sponsor: Scripps Networks, LLC, d/b/a HGTV, 9721 Sherrill Boulevard, Knoxville, TN 37932.

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Welcome to Spring Essentials, a Design Happens mini-series where we’ll highlight our favorite products to help you get your home ready for spring. The second installment: Spring gardening products that will have you looking fresh while cultivating fresh produce. See our product picks, then enter for a chance to win your own garden gear!

Sure you could wear your torn jeans and boyfriend’s shirt to attack garden weeds, but nothing makes gardening more fun than finding clothing and accessories that go the extra mile when it comes to playing in the dirt — while helping you look good doing it.

More and more companies are creating garden gear with special materials and features that can help you stay dry and cool, protect you from the sun and even keep bugs away, so you can be a true garden ninja. Check out our selections for next wave garden gear that will put some spring in your step.

Cool Garden Gear for Spring1. Duluth Trading Company / 2. Bogs /  3. L.L. Bean / 4. Duluth Trading Company /

1. Keep It Comfy: Nothing fancy here, just a flattering, 100-percent cotton tunic cute enough to wear in the garden or sport at a weekend barbecue. This absolute essential in the Duluth Trading Company garden gear line emphasizes ease of movement and comfort, two things every gardener needs. ($64.50)

2. Practicality Underfoot: You’re out in the garden getting gross but very happy, then the phone rings or nature calls and you don’t want to muck up the place with your dirt-filled shoe treads. Enter the Bogs Urban Farmer Clog, a vital ingredient in any gardener’s repertoire. Just slip them off, do what you need to do and head back into the muck. Done. These babies also have a steel shank for shovel protection and a DuraFresh odor guard, well, just because. ($70.00)

3. Get Your Head Together: Hats are essential protection, whether you’re a gardener aged 10 or 100. Trust us — sunscreen needs some help when you’re sweating to the oleander for hours. But garden hats often tend to skew huge and straw; we’re always grateful for clever design to switch things up a bit, and L.L. Bean’s San Diego Striped Bucket Hat offers 50+ SPF without making you feel like an extra in Steel Magnolias($24.95)

4. Cool Customer: These Dry on the Fly Capris are practical, yes. They will keep you cool and will forgive all manner of Twister-style gardening moves. But they’re also crazy-comfortable, easier to wear than even your most cherished, lived-in sweats. Plus, sweats don’t have pockets. ($54.50)

Spring Essentials Design Happens Blog HGTV1. Duluth Trading Company / 2. Target / 3. Duluth Trading Company / 4. Orvis / 5. Aigle

1. Close to the Vest: There are twelve, count ‘em, twelve pockets in this baby, making this Heirloom Gardening Vest from Duluth Trading Company a sort of briefcase you can wear to the garden. ($59.50)

2. Get in Gear: A great Mother’s Day gift idea, or just a way to treat yourself, this handy-dandy set from Target includes a bucket organizer for your tools (stick a plant inside, and you’ve just made Mom’s day), pruners and some durable jersey gloves. Another plus: this is a very inexpensive set to get a beginner gardener started. ($23.99)

3. Horticultural Hipster: Don’t think because you’re out in the garden that you’re required to sport a Nana-approved chapeau. This jaunty little Ripstop Military Cap comes in a punchy amethyst shade and a more subdued slate color to match your fashion and gardening mood. ($29.50)

4. Don’t Sweat It: Super-relevant for gardeners, Orvis’s ExOfficio Bugsaway Lumen Hoody wicks away moisture and keeps insects away with its built-in, long-lasting Insect Shield repellent that gives bugs the brush-off for up for 70 washes. The gelato colors (grenadine and tropez) and super-comfy, barely-there fit sweeten the deal. ($60.00)

5. These Boots Were Made for Weeding: The 162-year-old French company Aigle designs the sort of boots worn by earthy glamour girls like Natalie Portman and Eva Mendes. These ultra-adorable Miss Juliette boots are so cute your gardener friends will be jealous and wonder how you managed to turn gardening into a fashion-forward hobby. ($125.00)

Ready to upgrade your garden garb? One lucky Design Happens reader will win a $50 gift card to Duluth Trading Company — a perfect way to get started!  To enter the giveaway, leave a comment below. This giveaway’s question: What are your spring gardening essentials? Tell us about them!

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 March 24, 2014 and 12:00 p.m. ET on March 25, 2014. Subject to full official rules. By leaving a comment on the blog, you acknowledge your acceptance to the Official Rules. ARV of prizes: $50. Sponsor: Scripps Networks, LLC, d/b/a HGTV, 9721 Sherrill Boulevard, Knoxville, TN 37932.
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I absolutely love gardening. But because I live in an apartment, my “garden” is just an assortment of containers that I refresh each spring. So, instead of spending money on new pots this year, I decided to search for creative ways to revamp my basic terra cotta containers. I found out there’s so much you can do with them, from paint and fabric to materials like rope. Check out these easy and creative planter projects I’m dying to try this spring.

ModPodge + Fabric

These adorable fabric-wrapped pots are super simple and make perfect Mother’s Day gifts. Although they aren’t intended for outside use, they’re great for potting orchids, indoor succulents or as decorative catchalls. Get the step-by-step instructions >>

Add more color with these glow-in-the-dark planters >>

Milk Paint

If you’re going for a French Country look this year, these milk-painted pots are perfect. Use them as centerpieces, gifts or for a weathered feel in the garden. Get the step-by-step instructions >>

Rustic Rope

Terra cotta pots wrapped in rope on HGTV.com

Photo via DIY Show Off

Create these French Country-inspired planters with terra cotta pots, sisal rope and metallic spray paint. Get the step-by-step instructions >>

More DIY Ideas to Try

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As a kid I LOVED to hunt for hidden plastic Easter eggs — I didn’t even care if there was chocolate inside or not! For me the thrill of the searching and finding was enough. Since no one is volunteering to put on a grown-up Easter egg hunt for me, I’m instead channeling my laser focus for colorful, pastel things into finding Easter egg-colored home decor.

Since the weather is rapidly warming, it’s a great time to look at spring-fresh bedroom decorating ideas. It’s time to swap out heavy comforters for light coverlets, so why not change dark, moody colors out for the kind you’d find in an Easter basket? Pastels get a little bit of an unfair rap for being little-girlish, but I think when used right they’re appropriate for any age.

Neutral Transitional Bedroom With Canopy Bed

Design by Musso Design Group

This bedroom by Musso Design Group does it just right: A neutral backdrop with soft white bedding and beige curtains can work for any season. The bright pops of orange and turquoise in the blanket and throw pillows are perfect for spring and summer but can be swapped out for items with heavier fabric and darker colors to match fall and winter.

Fuchsia and Brown Moroccan Inspired Bedroom

Design by Jennifer Dyer

Ok, I admit I’m not much of a pink gal, but I LOVE this bedroom. There’s something so alluring about the rich, fuchsia-colored chairs, throw pillows and wallpaper. The deep gray tone of the carpet and curtains and the hardwood-covered ceiling help tone down the overall effect of the more colorful accents, giving this room designed by Jennifer Dyer a luxury hotel-like feel.

Yellow Cottage Bedroom With White Iron Bed

Design by Denise Fogarty

You just can’t look at this room without feeling instantly warmer and happier. This classic cottage bedroom is the definition of inviting with its white iron bed and lemony yellow walls. This look would lend itself well to a welcoming guest bedroom.

Bedroom With Hummingbird-Print Wallpaper and Luxury Touches

Design by Preston Lee

Designer Preston Lee knows how to make formal design fun. Just take a look at this minty bedroom bedecked in Osborne and Little Grove Garden Wallpaper, which provides a perfect spring setting for the high-end furnishings and accessories, such as the shell-covered chandelier, sunburst mirror and canopy bed.

Moody, Masculine Master Bedroom

Design by Caitlin & Caitlin

I’ve saved my favorite for last. Design team Caitlin & Caitlin used a moody shade of lavender that invokes both feminine and masculine appeal. The gray duvet plays to the more serious side of the otherwise playful color, while the Southwestern style blanket warms things up.

What is your favorite Easter egg-inspired color? Tell us in the comments below.

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