Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Creepy Specimen Jars and a Tutorial

Martha Stewart

True confession- I have a thing for creepy looking specimen jars at Halloween. Whether it's body parts, insects, or some sort of mutant rodent- they are by far my favorite kind of Halloween decoration. 

Martha Stewart

Leave it to  Martha Stewart to make specimen jars chic! It was years ago that I saw a feature in one of her magazines (presumably one of her October issues) where she had skeletal hands under a cake dome and severed fingers in small trinket boxes- it's all quite morbid but add some glitter and it kind of makes it less edgy, right?


There is something mysterious about them!


Admit it - you are looking at these and wondering what the heck are they!

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Martha Stewart

They don't have to be creepy to be interesting. Here plants and tinted liquid are used to give it an ominous look.

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Last week  I posted this pic as part of a Halloween decorating post .

Here is my very simple, family-fun version:

Supplies Needed: 
Spray paint
Creepy insects

Step 1
Spray paint the sticks (I used silver and white)
Spray paint the creepy crawly things.

Step 2
Spray paint lids.
When dry, glue moss into the inside of each lid.

Step 3
Glue creepy crawlers to sticks that have been broken down to fit within the jars.

Step 4
Carefully screw the lids on.

Step 5
Sit back and be creeped out!

The kids thought it would be fun to glue spiders onto the outside of the jar "so people would think that they escaped" oooh, scary!

Here is one more for inspiration.

I like the specimen jars with liquid in them better- I guess that's the next project!
Either way, this is a very fun project for the kids.
Pretty creepy, huh?

Monday, September 26, 2011

What I'm Loving Right Now!

Ever since I did a post on complimentary colors, like blue and orange, I have been obsessing over orange! That same week, I got a custom order for a weathered orange lazy susan. I was so excited!
Do you remember the white one that I refurbished? (pictured below)

Click here to go to the before and after tutorial

 I really liked how the French nailhead trim added some bling to the otherwise indiscriminate lazy susan. I liked it so much that I decided to make more and sell them on my Etsy shop- I.Design Marketplace

The white lazy susan is 18" in diameter. This one is only 15". My customer wants to use this smaller version on her desk to corral a candy dish and some of her desk supplies. 

I started by painting the wood burnt sienna and then layered two shades of orange paint on top of that. It was fun to scratch, gouge and sand some of the orange paint off in order to reveal the darker color underneath. Once I got it where I liked it, I rubbed a dark walnut stain over the entire piece and finished with  two coats of sealer. Of course the finishing touch is the nailhead trim.

I staged it with some of my own desk accessories just to see what it could look like.

The weathered orange finish and the brass nailheads are just a perfect combo! I'm reluctant to let it go :)
Have you been obsessing over any colors lately?

I'm sharing with:

The DIY Show Off

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Decorating for Halloween

If you haven't started decorating for Halloween yet, these images will inspire you! My youngest was born on Halloween and of course we have a big celebration, so I like to do some fun and festive decorating. 


Isn't this owl grand?
 I absolutely love it, am inspired by it and must create something similar to it!


The mantle is one of my favorite places to decorate for Halloween. 
When I get mine done I will share it with you.


I don't know if white pumpkins are a product of genetic modification- but if they are, what a great success!
I think they are incredible- not to replace orange pumpkins but as a compliment to them. They are amazing!


Every year, the kids and I do a Halloween project. 
This is what we will be taking on this year and I'll put together a tutorial for you. We are collecting our jars -stay tuned for that.


Use florist foam (available at craft stores) to create these fresh flower pumpkins.


Another idea that I will use this year- I'm so excited to decorate this year! 
"Honey- get the stuff down from the loft!"


What do you think of the painted squash skeleton heads? Aren't they cute :)


A very clever way to decorate a bookcase.


Of course you need some spooky candles!


A beautiful and understated fall table setting.


Hopefully, this year we won't need the fireplace before October 31st!
This is a cute display.


Absolutely my style -Love, love, love!


Pumpkin totems are fun. I like these with the stars and moon glowing.


You know I love birds- even crows (except when they wake me early in the morning with their incessant "caws"). They are a great decoration for Halloween- Poe would agree!


Cloches make everything look better.


Notice how the carving matches the wall covering. Details, details!


This image inspired me so much that I decided to paint some pumpkins of my own and sell them! Thus my infrequent postings as of late. Sorry! 
I'm hoping to have my pumpkins at Village Ace Hardware by the end of the week. 
Baldwinsville store for sure, hopefully, Fayetteville store as well. I'll keep you posted.

Below are a couple of mine

Do you decorate for Halloween?

Monday, September 12, 2011

Sunflower Style

I've always loved the look of sunflowers against the side of a barn or as a border along the edge of a garden but I've never cared for them in the house. I think it's the color combo- yellow and brown- just not a big fan...until now! Isn't it funny how our preferences change. I've never liked orange either, yet lately, I can't get enough of it!

The nature center by our house has the Golden Harvest Festival every year so there have been a lot of signs around and they all have sunflowers on them- that's what got me to thinking about them.

Life's A Splash
Look how fresh and beautiful these sunflowers look in a blue and white ginger jar.

I'm finding that I really like them with wood tones- I think it cools the colors down a bit.


Southern Living
They look great here in this very fallish display

yet they can look so summery when displayed with bright colors.

Neiman Marcus
This sunflower chair from Neiman Marcus definitely has my interest peaked!

Good Housekeeping
Create a cute "country style" display...

...or something a bit more modern?

Shawna Robinson
Another sunflower chair, this one by ex-Nascar racer turned interior designer, Shawna Robinson. 
I could do an entire post on her fun chair designs (actually, maybe I will)!

between naps on the porch traditional porch

This image and the next one have the sunflowers looking ethereal and artsy. So pretty- I can't believe I'm saying that about sunflowers!


One more sunflower chair- who knew there were so many chairs paying homage to the sunflower!

I mentioned that I love them in combination with wood tones, well, they are equally gorgeous with blue. 
Don't you agree?

"A yellow living room inspired by the beauty of a sunflower".



Have you had enough? I tried to choose images that were atypical. Of course, there are so many beautiful door wreaths and fall bouquets that include sunflowers but we know what those look like. 

Do you decorate with sunflowers or feel inspired to?