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Of all the major award shows, The Oscars broadcast is the only one I rearrange my calendar for, so you know what I’ll be doing this Sunday night. I’ve been a film fanatic since I was a kid, and I’d be lying if I said I didn’t want to see my own name in lights one day. But since my acting career has fallen behind my interest in home design, I guess I’ll just have to settle for incorporating the lights into my own home and hope that my dogs will make do as my adoring fans.

I’ve been drawn to marquee signs since I started seeing them pop up in interiors with the rustic trend, and I’m in love with designer Amy Lutz’s use of marquee letters to spell out “LOVE.” The placement of the letters is perfect — they illuminate both the patio and dining room of this Austin home, creating a fun, playful vibe.

Design by Amy Lutz

Here’s another great example from Blu Interiors, which used marquee letters to spell out “ATL” and honor the homeowner’s love for the city of Atlanta. The letters really work with the rustic, vintage vibe of the space.

Design by Blu Interiors

If spelling out “BETH” ends up being a little too obvious or gets vetoed by my husband, maybe I’ll opt for a symbol like the arrow designer Karen Wolf used in what has got to be the hippest nursery ever!

Design by Karen Wolf

What kind of marquee sign would you display in YOUR home, or do you already have one flashing? Let us know in the comments below.

Want more inspiration for your home? Head to the HGTV Photo Library.

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If I’m throwing a summer party, I’m not about to blow my budget on a tiny strand of decorative string lights (I’d much rather splash out on the food!). With this in mind, I set out to make some custom lantern string lights out of simple paper bags. The results, if I do say so myself, are pretty adorable. Watch the video to learn how:

YouTube Preview Image

These lanterns make a cute centerpiece as well. They scream summer to me! Just the thing to kick off Memorial Day weekend.

DIY Paper Bag Lantern String Lights

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Yesterday Liz reminded me that it’s Modernism Week, and my timing couldn’t be better. Why is that? Well today I’m showing you how to make this killer geometric pendant light from a $20 roll of copper tubing from the plumbing section of the hardware store. Watch the video to learn how:

This is a great project for those in search of modern lighting without the big price tag. An abstract design means there are no mistakes–so have some fun!

DIY Geometric Light Pendant

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Contest is now closed, congratulations Wendy!

Have you finished your holiday decorating yet? Or are you just getting started? Me, I fall somewhere in the middle. The tree is up and trimmed, the mantel is mostly done (I think it just needs some greenery), and I have a few finishing touches to add to the rest of the house. One thing I can’t wait to hang is this Light-Up Holiday Star. It’s kind of amazing. Watch the video below to see how to make this project for yourself, and then read on to win some Pottery Barn stockings!

This show stopper of a star looks great indoors but since it’s made of foam and LED lights you can use it outdoors as well! It would look great next to your front door, don’t you think?

Hanging Light-Up Holiday Star

Faux Fur Stockings courtesy of Pottery Barn

Now on to our giveaway! Here is your chance to deck your halls in style, thanks to our friends at Pottery Barn. Leave a comment on this post and you’ll be entered to win two Faux Fur Stockings and two Faux Sheepskin Stockings, each trimmed in gorgeous ivory velvet.

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 11:00 a.m. ET on December 3, 2013 and 12:00 p.m. ET on December 9, 2013. Subject to full official rules. By leaving a comment on the blog, you acknowledge your acceptance to the Official Rules. ARV of the prize: $98.00. Sponsor: Scripps Networks, LLC, d/b/a HGTV, 9721 Sherrill Boulevard, Knoxville, TN 37932

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The right lighting design can do so much for any room, especially the kitchen. After all, it’s truly the heart of the home. Just picture it. Your kids are doing homework at the table or counter. And you’re cooking dinner for your family and trying to read a difficult recipe – all while helping with geometry. So much time is spent in the kitchen, and so much work is being done. Doesn’t it make sense that the kitchen lighting design should cater to your family’s needs? So whether your life calls for bright natural lighting or atmospheric chandeliers, one of these stylish and functional lighting design ideas is bound to fit your needs.

kitchen lighting


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I thought I’d give you a little break from our Valentine-inspired posts (we admit that we enjoy the holiday a bit much at and focus on lighting — “jar lighting” to be exact.

This 5-jar chandelier casts a soft glow when filled with vintage-style bulbs. Hung above tables, counters or in hallways, its lighthearted charm warms up any space.


And now, back to our regularly-scheduled Valentine programming.

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Was I the only kid that went through an origami phase? I think I was more drawn to all of the pretty paper than I was to actually mastering the craft. This amazing Origami Lamp from Moth makes me wish I’d been more diligent in my studies:

Moth Origami Lamp

Or, maybe I should just leave this to the experts. With my luck I’d start a fire.

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I can’t keep plants alive to save my life. Especially orchids, which is very unfortunate because they are one of my favorite flowers. So I’ve decided to decorate my home with what look like orchids but are actually fake flowers with tiny lights. Even though I’m not normally a fan of fake flowers, I think these orchid branch lights by Graham and Green freshen up a room as if it were the real thing. Plus, I don’t have to feel guilty for killing any more plants! And for those of you who can keep them alive, you can display them in a stunning basket-weave container.

 Orchid Branch Lights

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May is Home Improvement Month, and since improving your home doesn’t have to mean tearing down a wall or installing new countertops, I thought I’d share a very simple update you can make to your home. If you have dark walls then your white power outlets are probably too noticeable for your own liking. Emily from Jones Design Company found a great solution that only requires some decorative scrapbook paper, Mod Podge, scissors and a sponge brush. So if you can glue paper, this project is for you. You can check out her blog for the complete tutorial. What other decoupage projects would you like to try in your home? Tell us in the comments below.

 Decoupage Light Switch Plate

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Paper lanterns have been a go-to decoration for parties for years, but lately people have been incorporating them in their everyday decor. Etsy shop owner Zippy8Lighting made this quirky artichoke paper lantern using pages from old paperback books, which would be so fitting in a home office or library. I wonder if these lights have that old book page smell that I love so much!

 Mixed Paper Lanterns

 How would you tie in paper lanterns into your home’s decor? Tell us in the comments below.

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The Kentucky Derby is just days away, and this year it falls on Cinco de Mayo. I had the chance to go to the Derby on Cinco de Mayo five years ago, and it was one of the most memorable experiences of my life. My favorite part was seeing a mix of the traditional hats with festive sombreros. This lamp by Folly does a good job of mixing traditional with whimsical, with its colorful miniature jockeys. Now all I need is a mint julep and a winning ticket!

 Jockey Porcelain Lamp

 If you were going to the Kentucky Derby this year, would you go with a traditional hat or a sombrero? Tell us in the comments below.

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When I tell people I grew up in Huntsville, Ala., the usual response I get is “Oh yeah, the city with the space station.” So I obviously love all things that have to do with space. (Anybody else have these glow-in-the-dark stickers on their ceiling growing up?) I wish I could’ve been one of the many people that witnessed the arrival of the Space Shuttle Enterprise this past Friday in New York City.

Now that images of astronauts, shuttles and freeze-dried ice cream are dancing in your head, I thought you’d enjoy this super cool moon pendant light by Catellani & Smith. I wouldn’t mind reading a good book right next to this moon.

 Moon Pendant Light

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Statement lighting is a must for me, as I find that quirky floor and table lamps can often make the most basic room shine. So naturally, after spotting this tripod floor lamp at Anthropologie, I was instantly smitten. Yet the lampshade didn’t quite work for us, and spending $300 on a base was a bit out of our budget.

Rustic Floor Lamp DIY Project - Erin Loechner

Our custom DIY lamp - finished and happy in its new home!

What to do? Craft the perfect lamp ourselves! Inspired by the tripod lamp base, we put our own spin on the design with a seaside-inspired lantern and reclaimed wood scraps from our closet pull project. The good news? We’ve documented (heavily!) the entire process below, so you can follow along at home. Care to give it a go? Follow the tutorial after the jump!:

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Another fun AD Home Design Show find was this SHY Polyhedron chandelier by Bec Brittain from Matter. Actually, I’d spotted it on Svpply intially, but it’s even more awe-inspiring when you see it in person.

polyhedron chandelier

One of these pictures kinda looks like it’s upside down, but the nifty thing about the SHY Polyhedron is that it can be hung from any of its hubs, so you can change the look to suit your space and taste. Plus, the LED tubes are so very TRON in a good way, don’t you think? (If geometry looked this cool in school, I probably would have paid more attention to it.)

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I’m a sucker for a nice bathroom. I know a lot of people care more about kitchens or bedrooms or living rooms, but for better or for worse, I’m a bathroom stickler, and it’s been the make-or-break factor in almost all of the apartments I’ve rented. If this gorgeous bathroom by Blanca Sanchez of Halo Design Interiors was in a rental, I’d be all, “Where do I sign? Give me the keys!”

bathroom lights

The whole space looks clean, calm and inviting — so, pretty much everything you’d want in a bathroom — but the romantic twinkle of the overhead lighting is what pushes this over the top for me. I can imagine spending a lot of time here, relaxing and daydreaming in the tub, and “stargazing” at the celestial patterns and shapes on the ceiling.

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I find a lot of great things on Pinterest these days*, but you just can’t ignore the pleasure of kicking back with a glossy design magazine** and taking in all the goodies. For instance, I found Tony Duquette’s Magic Forest Lamp by Remains Lighting whilst browsing the new issue of Elle Decor and thank goodness for that, because what if I didn’t know that such kooky glam pieces still existed?

magic forest lamp

If it looks a little bit retro, that’s because it is. Duquette designed these torchiere-trees for MGM’s 1952 musical, Lovely to Look At. As soon as I saw it, I instinctively knew something so dramatic had to have some tie to Hollywood. Fair warning that this is not very affordable (it’s $5,325 — sigh), but how striking would this be in a dining room or even a bedroom? The soft glow of the bulbs, combined with the fanciful leaves and twinkling crystal balls is indeed lovely to look at.

*Please follow me on Pinterest. Pretty please?

**Speaking of magazines, have you subscribed to HGTV Magazine yet?

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