Monday, October 28, 2013

Fall Mantle. My Simple Design How-To's.

Happy Monday!

Let's talk fall decor. More specifically, mantels. 

Do you decorate your mantle seasonally?

If so, it can get pretty daunting, if you are trying to one up yourself in the design department from one year to the next! 

My idea to keep it simple was born out of necessity. I mean, who has time to be Martha Stewart, and still get to the gym, clean the house, be a mom, and have a life? 

I can't decorate like I am having a photo shoot every other month! 

So, I cheat. I use what I have, add a few little things, and try to keep it understated. 

Sort of. 

I am not exactly a minimalist. 

I like layers, people. - And a weird assortment of collected "junk." 

Whatever makes me happy when I see it. That's my litmus test for what should be in my home.

I generally do just one mantle per season. Sometimes my spring and summer are the same. For fall I don't do a separate Halloween Mantle. 

I do put a few Halloween items around the house, because my son loves them, but they go up the week of Halloween, and come down the day after. 

It just works better for me to have a design that stays the same through Thanksgiving.

I also have a few core items that stay up on the mantle most of the year, like the books, the clock, and the urn.

The Book Page Wreath will stay up most of the year too. 

...Unless I find something really cool that inspires me.

This season, the only thing I bought were the little brown paper pumpkins. 

I used some re-cycled black tissue to fill them. 

I am very happy with how it turned out!

I just try to make my life easy and keep it simple! 

What are your seasonal design strategies?

Do you decorate in an elaborate way for each season or holiday?

...Now just so we are clear, all bets are off for Christmas! 

I go a little crazy! What about you?

Have a great week! 

Thanks for stopping by!

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Fall Home Tour 2013

Hello and Happy Fall! 

As usual, I am once again, late to the party.

I like to arrive fashionably late. 

...Yeah, that's it. It was totally planned. And thoughtfully executed. 

I meant to wait this long. 


Ok, not really. 

I am sorry. Sometimes my life feels overwhelming, and I just have to put the brakes on. 

Plus, we just got back from a really lovely family trip to Switzerland and England. 

I promise to share more about that soon!

So, I have been decorating for fall for weeks now, but have not gotten around to showing you any of it.

...Until today. :-)

Prepare for photo overload!

I have been buying pumpkins, gathering leaves, and pinecones, and adding fluffy pillows, lots of cozy 

blankets to snuggle under, and flannel sheets on the beds. 

I decorated my mantel ages ago. I made my own Autumn Banner and gathered things that I already 

had on hand. I like to keep my decorating simple.

I don't do a lot outside for fall, as the winds in Southern California this time of year can be extreme, and I don't want to decorate with lots of little cute things, only to have them blow away!

Inside my house, I only put a few things up for Halloween, and I normally do it just a few days prior. 

I like to have Autumn decor that will last from early fall, through Thanksgiving. 

The day after Thanksgiving, and sometimes even turkey day itself, all of the Christmas stuff is pulled out, and holiday preparations are in full swing!

So for fall, I don't buy a lot of new things. I just gather all my pinecones, twigs, feathers and gourds, and fill and fluff until I have something that makes me smile.

Now prepare for a few in bad light...

View from the dining room back towards the living room. See what I mean about my lousy photos? 
The light in here is just never conducive. But then again, I was using my iPhone here. Lol!

 My little reading nook got a few ears of indian corn.

I bought nothing new for the dining room table, I just used a cloth napkin I had, and some cotton stuffing, a rubberband and a ribbon to create this fabric pumpkin. The stem is REAL! I found a whole bunch on the ground at the pumpkin farm last year, so I picked them up in hopes of making fancy fabric pumpkins. 

But, turns out I'm a tad lazy. ;-) 
So I cheated. 

I had some burlap that I received at the Haven conference, and I used that instead of placemats, for a rustic feel. 

I gathered my ironstone dishes, and layered in some green plates for color. 

 I also used some satin ribbon in brown, and I just layered it on top of the burlap. Across the table lengthwise, I layered a thicker sheer amber ribbon with an oak leaf print. 

My sweet little Quail mom and baby I found thrifting...

And a few random odds and ends thrown together. Somehow it all makes sense to me! That stem of pods fell from one of my palms, and the copper acorn tag was found at my local flea market. 

I have no idea why I like the ripped old book page liner, but I just do.

I added thrift store ironstone cups that I could not seem to walk away from, to a wreath in my dining room. I LOVE how it turned out, and will be sharing more about it this soon! 

The living room and dining room have 11 windows between them, so these two rooms get TONS of light, making them quite a challenge to photograph well. 

So I usually dont. 
Photograph them well, that is...

It doesn't seem to stop me from taking ten thousand pictures. ;-)

I love the vignette on the buffet, but I am still looking for something else to go in the center of that charger. A cool plate maybe? 

Or, maybe I will take that down and do something else. Ya neva know! 

In my kitchen, I have a rustic farm table with grey legs. 

I added some wheat bundles that I already had, and set the table with my pretty everyday dishes...

I love that I did not have to buy anything to make it look festive!

The above is a sneak peek at an upcoming post. But it is how my mantle looks now, and how it will stay until the day after Thanksgiving. I made the Book Page Wreath from an old dictionary, and the banner I made this year too!

I love to decorate for the seasons, but as you may notice, I don't feel that it's necessary to spend a lot, or even ANY money to accomplish the look that I want.

I hope you enjoyed a little look at some of my fall decor. 

Happy Fall! 
Please come back and visit again soon! 
I've missed you!

Thanks for stopping by!