After church is over, the heels kicked off and dinner is slow basting itself on the stove, before I sit down and plan out my week — I like to sit and clear my mind with a little bit of the wonderfulness that the world has to offer on the web.
I think it’s about time for me to dust off my laptop and get back to it! I’ve been recovering from the long summer with my girls and getting into a groove this new school year.There’s been a ton of changes around here and I’m taking them in stride. So here’s what’s been going on at HFN lately — in no particular order.
First day of school for my 2nd and 3rd graders. Where is time going??
This week I celebrated my 31st birthday with a sushi night with my husband. It was a quick and intimate dinner since it was a Thursday night and the kids needed to be in bed by 8:30
I found these gorgeous orange gladiolus at my local Kroger for $1.61! I was so excited. I wanted to grab up a ton but I controlled myself. Flowers make me happy.
My middle baby turned 7!! She’s turning into such a little lady.
The girl’s Nana (my husband’s mom) came to visit and the girls soaked up every single minute. Since we live so far from home (Virginia), visits are always special.
So there’s the short update. I wish I had more decorating stuff to share but honestly I haven’t done a thing since the summer began. I’ve been working on some things around here lately and I can’t wait to share.
Just like growing up and figuring out what you want to do with your life, it takes some time to develop a decorating style. It’s easy to go to a furniture store and buy a set — lamps included– but it takes a little bit more forethought to put something together that’s collected, showcases your personality and is functional to your lifestyle.
There are three words that sum up my decorating style and makes it easier for me to add things to my home that will fit. When I’m shopping or DIY-ing something, whatever I come up with will usually fit one of these three categories.
I don’t like a lot of clutter or things that are fussy. Simple to me means clean lines, neutral colors and classic silhouettes. I have had the same lamps for years. Their shape is simple and they can be updated with a new shade. Simple doesn’t mean boring — instead it sets the foundation for everything from accessories to lighting to textiles.
I find myself to drawn to timeless pieces. I’m not a trendy person — so I tend to avoid chevron, ombre, and the trendy colors of the year. I gravitate towards versatile pieces of furniture and art that will last for much longer than a season.
If there is one thing that I love is shimmer. Gold, silver, crystal, glass — anything that reflects light just exudes luxury and glam. I love adding a little shimmer to every room because it catches my eye and keeps things interesting.
Now, everything in my home isn’t simple, timeless or shimmery — but these are the main elements that build the foundation. Of course, I throw in something random from time to time like this to add in some whimsy but it definitely helps to have a go-to formula for decorating.
I challenge you to come up with your own words that define your style and see how much easier it makes the decorating process.
I know a lot of what stopped me from decorating our house in the past was the fact that a decorating budget just did not exist. I remember when we moved to Florida (from Philadelphia where I did zero decorating) my mom gave me a set of four frames. I was so excited that I immediately put some family pictures in them and hung them on the wall.
And honestly — that’s where I got bit by the decorating bug. I had always loved making things pretty — but I thought it took a ton of cash to get the look I wanted. But those free frames started the wheels turning in my head. I looked around for other free things that I could make into something beautiful.
Over the years — I’ve figured out ways to decorate our home with little to no money. Trust me it’s very possible.
1. Swap furniture, pillows and accessories
A really simple way to change things up is to swap out furniture. I do this all the time. I move bookshelves and tables and chairs because what works today may not work tomorrow. Or you decide to use a space a different way. Currently, I’m using an old TV stand as a side table and it’s working magnificently. Look for things that can be used in a different area in your home — sometimes for a purpose it wasn’t originally meant to serve.
2. Paint Something
We’ve always lived in rentals so painting hasn’t always been an option. When I can’t paint walls — I usually find a piece of furniture to paint. Whether it’s a neutral color or something brighter — painting mismatched furniture allows for harmony even if you start with a rag tag team of furniture. Also — paint allows you to inject your personality through color.
My friends sometimes out grow their furniture and accessories. And so do I. That’s when a trade can happen. It’s a free way to get new things that you can transform to fit your decor — if it doesn’t already work in your home.
4. Get Creative and Repurpose
Sometimes you’ve got to use what you have in unexpected ways. I turned this watch box into a decorative container. Or even using the box our sheets came into as a storage container for the top of our cabinet. Start to look at things differently and items will become second nature. I have to remind myself not to hoard because I usually can think of a way to repurpose anything.
I’m grateful to my mom for those four old picture frames because it really created a passion in me to search for ways to make home home without spending a ton of money.
I’m not sure if it’s all the changes in my life right now or the fact that the girls are getting older and me too for that matter — but I keep searching for that settled feeling. I keep looking forward to what’s next instead of making the most of what’s now.
I grew up a military brat — shuffled from this state to the next — never really getting a chance to feel like I truly belonged before the orders were handed down and we were shipped off to the next place.
I call Virginia my home but right now here in Texas. But I keep thinking about leaving. About moving closer to our family.
And I’m forgetting that I live here right now.
I want the girls to feel secure at home — wherever that may be — so I know that I have to stand firm where I am.
A good friend once told me to be where your feet are. And right now my feet are in Houston, Texas.
Sometimes when home is far away — it’s hard for me to give my all to this place that isn’t really my home. But I’m here for a reason. God has guided us here and I can’t lose sight of the fact that I’m supposed to be here right now today. And maybe even for years to come.
I wouldn’t trade anything for my experience being a military brat. It made me stronger, more willing to take an adventure and a master at packing up a house.
Awhile ago, I found some gorgeous ikat fabric at Joanne’s that I fell in love with. The shades of gray and the citron (though it looks way more yellow in the photos) was perfect.
Until I changed my mind with the direction the bedroom was headed and the colors didn’t work at all anymore.
So I did what any sane person would do — I painted the fabric.
Before on the right. After on the left. Confusing — I know.
There are those moments when you just have to make something work. I am a master at painting things to make it into what I need it to be.
I used a regular matte wall paint, a small paint brush and about 15 minutes to paint and a half hour to dry. And I figured that if it didn’t turn out well — I was only out about $3 for the fabric. This was totally a low risk project that I’m glad I decided to take on.
Now I know that this isn’t going to be a solution that’s always available — but it worked in this instance and I really like how it turned out.
I didn’t like it (anymore) — so I changed it. And that’s my tip for the day. Just because it started out one way doesn’t mean that it must stay that way. Take risks. Decorating a home is an adventure.
I hate to admit that sometimes I hoard things other people would throw away without a second thought. For whatever reason, my mind always manages to think of some way to use something that would otherwise be in the trash.
Take this plain old watch box and a single copper spray painted drawer pull.
I couldn’t help but see this watch box as a cute little storage box to sit on my nail head trim table.
I’m a sucker for monochromatic so I painted this the same color as the table and it also happens to be a variation of the color I painted the mirrors in my bedroom.
I glued the copper drawer pull on and called it done. I’m so in love with the copper and this shade of blue. #perfectmatch
It’s a simple thing to do — transform something that was headed towards the trash can into something useful. It may not be a huge box but it can hold q-tips, cotton balls, matches or even jewelry.
So tell me, am I the only one who looks at trash and sees what it could be?
Sometimes you don’t need to go out and buy something new to spruce up a room or a chair. Sometimes all you have to do is look at what you already have and figure out a way to make it into what you want it to be.
That’s the story of this pillow. Sadly I don’t have any before pictures because I wasn’t sure it it was actually going to work.
I followed this tutorial for this pillow. I used an old sheet — which happened to be the exact color I wanted.
It took a a few hours to twist and glue all the strips of fabric to the pillow but it was worth it. I love all the texture it adds.
I’ve been on a mission to use what I already have before I go and spend money on something new. It really makes me appreciate what’s already in my house when I can use things in a different way. This method also tends to be very budget friendly.
Sometimes change doesn’t need to come in the form of a whole room makeover. Sometimes it’s those small details that make the most difference.
I used regular silver thumbtacks that I had on hand to add the detail to this inexpensive wooden table that I painted navy blue. It took me less than an hour. That’s my kind of DIY.
Ever since I posted about my bedroom last week — I’ve realized that I actually did miss color. I love the quietness of a monochromatic room but color brings life. I’ve added in a teal blue for a little splash of color. I painted over an old painting and hung it above the DIY framed art.
I also DIY’d the box with the copper pull.
I added a basket beneath the table for a little texture and a place to hold my favorite sequined pillow — since honestly it’s not that comfortable to lean up against.
The thing I’m trying to remember as I focus on making a home is that it’s the small details that really make me smile. It doesn’t take a pile of cash to make something beautiful — even if that would be nice — it’s the time and love that I pour into transforming this place one small project at a time.