About the time I think it’s time for a blog vacation, I see something so gorgeous, so share worthy, my blog writing, sourcing and general gabfest battery is recharged and DIY project inspiration is born. Thank you, Better Homes and Gardens. The summer months can be as hectic as they are relaxing, and with that in mind I am tailoring my blog posts to suit the on-the-go set. Pretty is as pretty inspires.
Leopard prints are spot on style. This timeless look falls into the category of classic in the interior design and decor fabric hall of fame. Don’t share the leopard love? Here’s a suggestion. Introduce leopard print in a small but statement making way like the upholstered chair bottom in the above image. It will either make a bigger impression on you than you think, or it will only be a small bump in the decorative road to change. Vintage chairs can be found for cheap or free at second-hand shops, thrift stores, garage sales, flea markets and curbside boutiques (one man’s trash is another man’s DIY project).
Pick a fabulous designer color in your favorite brand of paint or spray paint and chalk it up, distress it down or go glam. Fabric remnants are a do it yourself upholsterers best friend and find. Upholstering a chair bottom is about as easy as a DIY project comes. Link love: how to reupholster a chair seat.
Low cost DIY projects keep beginners anxiety and buyers remorse at bay and spells D-I- Why not?
A Thanksgiving wreath is a lovely way to show the beauty of the season, and besides, the holidays are not the holidays until I tackle a DIY project.
Thanksgiving Wreath Materials List:
Mini gourds & pumpkins
Foam paint brush
Dried Hydrangea blooms
Pine cones, pecans, & acorns
Deco floral mesh
Here’s what you do:
Begin with a wreath of the material, shape, and size of your choice. I like using grapevine wreaths for the look, durability, and ease of reuse. The initial $17.99 investment pays for itself over and over. I don’t glue items directly to the wreath for that reason. Cover work surface with newspaper for easy post wreath project clean up.
Select the materials you will be using and the area(s) of the wreath you will be adorning.
With Thanksgiving as the theme, I like using natural elements such as cotton stalks, dried hydrangea blooms, Bartlett pear, sweetgum, and magnolia leaves, goose and pheasant feathers, pecans, acorns, and pine cones for the wreath.
Spanish and floral moss, mini gourds and pumpkins, and goose and pheasant feathers left over from the fall tablescape also figured into the material mix.
Step 3 (optional)
If the bright colors of the mini gourds and pumpkins don’t fit with the color palette, a foam paint brush and acrylic paint in a color that will can solve the issue. I marked up the pumpkin with a gold paint pen and allowed it to dry. To tone down the bright orange and yellow colors of the gourds and pumpkins, tip the foam paint brush lightly in the acrylic paint in raw umber, applying in sponge technique. Acrylic paint dries quick, and from experience I can report it is very easy to clean off fingers, fingernails, and surfaces- just so you know.
Select items and work in terms of groupings for better decorative control.
Cut hydrangea flowers and cotton stalks stems about 8 inches, allowing enough room to work with.
Make the stems long enough to work with at first. My final cut for the stems measures about 3-4 inches long.
Insert the stems between grapevines.
Using a hot glue gun and being careful not to burn yourself (gosh that hurts, doesn’t it?), apply hot glue to the back of the painted gourds and pumpkins.
Press them down applying pressure and hold into place for a few seconds.
Add a couple of drops of hot glue to the lower part of the back of the sweet gum leaves, applying to the cotton bloom to secure.
Fill in any blank areas with Spanish and floral moss. The Spanish moss stays beautifully in place between the vines.
Pine cones, acorns, and pecans come next. Apply a generous squeeze of hot glue to the back of a pine cone, press it into place while applying pressure.
Hold in place for a few seconds to allow it to adhere.
Repeat the same for the acorns and pecans.
As with the dried hydrangea blooms, cotton stalks, and Bartlett pears leaves- cut the magnolia leaf stem down to about a 3-4 inch stem.
Insert the magnolia stem directly between vines.
Using 21 inch wide floral mesh, figure the length of the area of the wreath you want to cover with the floral mesh, allowing extra mesh for the poufs.
Using wire cutters, cut a piece of floral wire about 5 inches long.
Starting about 3-4 inches from the end of the mesh, gather the mesh together in the middle and twist tie with wire. This makes the mesh easier to insert between grapevine.
Insert between vines and pull the end back up slightly, securing the starting point.
To make mesh poufs, work around the area of the wreath you want to cover by gathering sections of mesh together in the middle, poufing it out, and tucking between vines. The vines hold the mesh securely without wire.
Use wire cutters, cut a piece of floral wire about 5 inches long.
Starting about 3-4 inches from the end of the mesh, gather the mesh together in the middle and twist tie with wire.
Insert between the vines and pull the end back up slightly, securing the ending point.
Insert pheasant and goose feathers by simply tucking each quill between vines.
36″ Grapevine Wreath from Hobby Lobby: $17.99
Cotton stalks, dried hydrangea blooms, Bartlett pear, sweet gum, and magnolia leaves, goose and pheasant feathers, pecans, acorns, and pine cones: free
Mini gourds: $1
Mini pumpkins: $1
Spanish moss: $1
Floral moss: $1
Wire cutters: $1
Americana Acrylic Paint: $1.09
Foam paint brush: .20¢
Floral wire: $1
Deco floral mesh from The Paul Michael Company $7.99
Quick backstory~ this footstool belonged to my maternal grandmother and I always had an affinity for it. Sentimental value put the brakes on it becoming antique shop inventory, so keeping it in the family it is. The pseudo early American look simply does not do justice to the little footstool that can and its decorative potential. In a crystal clear moment of creative clarity I remembered the boatload of Sherwin-Williams Illusions Translucent Metallic Finish left over from a remodel. The Illusion line is no longer in production. The new line is Faux Impressions Metallic and comes in gold or pearl.
Sherwin-Williams Illusions Translucent Metallic Finish has a manufacturing formula that allows it to coat easier and capture the pigment of metal. I used two coats on each leg to achieve the depth of coverage I wanted. I tested a glaze application on one of the legs. The glaze muted the sheen too much for the intended effect. After the legs dried overnight I removed them with a screwdriver, set them to the side, and prepared to get my upholstering on.
On our most recent antiques buying trip I made a quick dash into Hobby Lobby with 40% off coupon in hand. The fabric below caught my eye only out of the “I’m here and I’m getting something” principal. Standing and studying the fabric, two words rose to the top of my thoughts.
There in the back of the bargain bin was a bolt of fabric with the texture, color, and price point perfect for this project. My upholstering formula is not rocket science. Square up the fabric cut and center the footstool top.
Gently pull the fabric up over sides to desired tightness. Staple fabric in place. I staple all the way around continuing to pull up sections of fabric as I go. Working in small sections makes the fabric easier to work with. I do a neat fold every few staple applications to make a neater tuck.
Trim off the excess fabric with scissors.
Screw the footstool legs back into place while the glue gun is heating up. Sharp scissors are a must when working with trim. Raveling is expected, but sharp scissors will guarantee a sharper, cleaner cut. Use caution with all these tools of the upholstering and DIY trade.
Time for a change~
This home decor DIY project saved an outdated keepsake from becoming just another tucked away item. It perfectly suits the intended purpose, price point, and finished look.
Holiday DIY projects are often only as good as the materials used. Sadly, we are retail deficient in my area of the world. Making the most out of what we do have continues to be a difficult kind of retail Sudoku. Like Sudoku, once you master it you breeze right through it. Thank the home improvement and arts and crafts powers that be for locating in my neck of the piney woods! Where there’s a Hobby Lobby and a Lowe’s… Now that the temps are tolerable, an afternoon out and about in the big city is a pleasure.
Weekly circulars? Check.
DIY projects in mind? Check.
Dave the Builder? Check.
And they’re off!
The calendar might say it is still summer, but Hobby Lobby says it’s the holidays! I am so excited for the It’s Fall Y’all autumn link parties! I have been planning for awhile. I believe I’ll be throwing my hat in the holiday projects ring with my fall mantel entry at The Lettered Cottage. This really looks like it is going to be fun!
It is so convenient to have Hobby Lobby and Lowe’s located next to each other. I must remember to send thank you notes!
My shopping cart runneth over and the ideas are flowing. Can you guess what the project is?