Design
> NEW GOODS ON ESTY / February 4, 2015
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final_1We have finally updated our Etsy Site with a few new designs for Spring. We are constantly adding new items so if you don’t see anything that fits your needs today – check back. You can also shoot us a email and place an order directly from us.

Enjoy!

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> DECK THE HALLS / December 12, 2014
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This Holiday season my decor inspiration was rooted in handcrafted holiday elements mixed with vintage treasures. I went to Salvation Army two weeks before Thanksgiving and fell for stacks of pink, silver and gold ornaments that were all on discount. I even found a few boxes of Shiny Brights! I bought up the whole lot (everything I could find) and friend suggested I use them to create a vintage ornament wreath. Multiple trips to The Salvation Army, Past Perfect, Shabata Floral yielded just enough ornaments to tackle such a large project. I wanted big impact, so I ended up with a 26″ Styrofoam wreath starter which produced a 30″ wreath!

Once I had finished the wreath, I was lucky enough to find a small snow village from the 1950’s crafted in Japan. It fit perfectly with my vintage ornaments and bottle brush trees. Next year I am going to die my bottle brush trees fun colors, but this year I just ran out of time for that extra step. I love the look of felted ball garland so I decided to top off the mantel with a hand felted snowball garland piece. I found out quickly that felting takes longer than it looks. I am going to keep working on this garland piece and hopefully it will double in size next year. Bellow is a quick guide to creating an ornament wreath and now it is time to sit back, sip on some cider and enjoy the Holiday decorations.

final_1DIY: Ornament Wreath

Materials needed: Styrofoam Wreath started // tinsel // various size ornaments // hot glue gun

Part I: The Hunt

As I mentioned above, I collected all of the ornaments at various Salvation Army locations, Antique markets, Flea markets and resources at the San Francisco Flower Mart. I have already started a collection for next year. It will take double the amount of ornaments you think you will need and you have to have all different sizes.

The bigger the wreath the smaller size ornaments you need because the small ornaments sizes act at the binding that keeps it all together. Even with second hand ornaments, the wreath does get pricy so you are better looking for ornaments in the off season or buying the lot right after Christmas when everything is on sale. I wanted to use mostly vintage ornaments because I love the way the glass ages, but you can really use anything and make these gorgeous wreaths.

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Part II: Assembly

1. Wrap your Styrofoam wreath started with tinsel (this will help hold the first layer of ornaments)

2. remove all the tops of the ornaments and discard

3. Heat the glue gun and apply hot glue to the edge of the ornament

4. Start with the outside circle and then the inside circle as you build you may have to go back and add glue to the sides of the ornaments to get everything to stick together. Don’t worry if it is not sticking perfect at this time the next layer will just reinforce the base.

5. Keep adding ornaments (larger first) around the outside gluing both the base and the sides as you build the wreath.

6. Fill in gaps with smaller ornaments. These will act as the binding that hold the whole wreath together. Don’t be afraid to use more glue when you get the final small pieces. You need the wreath to feel secure before you hang it. Once you go to hang it you may notice that it feels loose in areas. You can go ahead and re-apply glue to any areas that may need to be reinforced.

– The final layer of ornaments you can see the best so it is fun to put the special ones on this layer (for example my vintage pine cones that I added at the top of the wreath). This project can get frustrating and it will not feel finished until the end, but it is so much fun to put together and admire once it is up. I can’t wait to work on my next one. I already have a collection for next year!

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And if you need help – there is always Mr. and Mrs. Clause cheering you on!

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Setting the table for Thanksgiving is probably one of my favorite parts of the Thanksgiving holiday. Sharing a Thanksgiving meal is a family tradition and for me setting the table is like setting the stage for a great meal and conversation. This year, I was inspired to use my left over Halloween pumpkins and a quick trip to the flowermart provided some directional color scheming. I matched the color of the pumpkins to a pop of orange in some freshly picked persimmons. I dropped in some gold leafing for a touch of elegance and anchored the table with white pillar candles and white napkins.

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With two kids this year, I was looking for shortcuts when it came to a table setting. After years of dry-cleaning my placemats, I discovered paper placemats and I instantly became a fan. I use them both for the everyday dinning and special occasions. Featured on the table (above) are Confetti Paper Placemats. You can even customize them though the Paper Source for events such as birthday parties or weddings. There are so many different paper placemat options on the market now and they are great for kids who like to color! I keep a few different designs in my linen drawer for all occasions and the best part of using them – the end of the night they go in the recycling.

I love using persimmons when they are in season on my table for a beautiful pop of orange. Costco has them at a great price in bulk and they are found just about everywhere right now. They make for a great addition to a cheese plate if you get a few extra. I picked up some gold leaf trim for an added sparkle on-top of mini pumpkin centerpieces at the flowermart. You can also spray paint some gold leaf if you want to have a quick crafty solution for some added gold.

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DIY Mini Pumpkin Center Pieces:

What you will need: 3-5 small pumpkins (purchased at the grocery store) // Mellon ball scooper (remove the seeds) // Oasis // Three different types of flowers trimmed with a 4” stem //

Steps for assembly (10 minutes): Cut the top off the tops of the pumpkins and remove seeds with melon baller. Cut oasis to fit inside pumpkin and then soak in water. Clean flowers and leave 4” stem. Assemble by sticking flowers in oasis inside pumpkin. Try to cover all sides so that the flowers are spilling outside the pumpkin.

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I could not resist making a flower crown for Strawberry Blonded with the left over flowers. I can hear the bells from the kitchen as she runs down the hall wearing her crown no doubt ruling her kingdom.

From my table to yours – Happy Thanksgiving!

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> DIY: SUCCLULENT HOSTESS GIFTS / November 4, 2014
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final_2It is that time once again where the calendar starts to get booked with holiday parties, dinners parties and school events. My mom was the type of women who never to show up anywhere empty handed and so the importance of small gifts as a sign of gratitude is just as important to me as a hand written thank you note.

I love the idea of giving something green that will continue to grow and these small succulent tins are great for a kitchen window or even an office. They are small enough to carry out of the house and will survive long after the Holidays.

succletDIY Succulent Hostess Gifts:

I suggest making 3-6 of these at once and they can be stored in your house until they are needed. You can make a large enough batch to carry you though the whole Holiday season if needed. They only require water once ever week and a bit of sunlight.

Materials Needed:

Spray paint – color based on personal preference

Nail – for holes in the bottom of the tin

Tins – You can use anything from kitchen tins to full planters. I liked these small planters Zinc Norah Vases

Leaves & material to tie around the tin (ribbon/burlap rope)

Succulent – I buy my succulent at the SF Flowermart, but Home Depot or Loews has a great selection of succulent.

How to Assemble:

Remove the tins from the packaging and use small nail to create a few holes in the bottom of the vase so water can drain and succulent will not mold. Spray the tins and while they are drying spray the leaves (I used gold spray paint on my leaves for an extra pop of sparkle). Once they are dry, plant tins and tie on leave with burlap rope.

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> GLITTER PUMPKINS / October 20, 2014
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final_pumpkinAlthough I am a huge fan of carving pumpkins, I wanted to try something a bit different this year. My thought was that glitter pumpkins would be a great afternoon activity with the kids. I was at Trader Joe’s and found gorgeous Cinderella pumpkins for $6.99 and I thought they would make beautiful glitter pumpkins. I wanted to fill my fireplace up with festive Halloween decor, but wanted to keep the display elevated. I thought that I would give glitter pumpkins a test run.

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Glitter Pumpkins:

Supplies: Glue (mod podge or thick glue). I used the Martha Stewart brand that came with a brush // Powder glitter (I used Martha Stewart) – just note that you need the super fine glitter powder if you want it to stick correctly // Paintbrush – to help spread the glitter

Optional: Translucent brown acrylic paint / note that I tested out several versions of brown paint and each one needed to be water to help with the opacity. This last step is really is just to seal the glitter and is not a necessary step.

Quick Guide:

1. Wash the pumpkins and dry them. It is important that they are fully dry.

2. Spread the glue on the pumpkin and make sure that all cracks have full coverage. You want to have a thick layer of glue before you start with the glitter.

3. Sprinkle the glitter all over the pumpkin. I used a box to contain the glitter and the mess.

4. Let dry and then flip the pumpkin to cover the bottom with glitter.

5. Once the pumpkin is dry and you feel like you want to add the acrylic – paint at a very light layer and let dry.

What I learned: The size of pumpkin matters, the smaller the better. I think that I was a bit ambitious with the size of my pumpkins and even had to go back to the store to get a second round of glitter. I would have used smaller pumpkins the next go around.

Glitter, glitter and more glitter – no matter how careful you are with your glitter, this project gets glitter everywhere. I would suggest creating your pumpkins outside and get ready to be covered in glitter!

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I had to include the photos bellow as part of this post because they were taken this weekend at our yearly pilgrimage to the pumpkin patch. We fought the super hot sun, hour drive to Nicasio and the crowds to snag a few pumpkins. We skipped out on our annual tractor and pony ride and although the visit was brief, it is a tradition that I look forward to each year.

These two best friends have been inseparable from day one and hopefully will continue their epic friendship for years to come!

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> FLOWER FRIDAY / October 16, 2014
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Having fresh flowers in the house in the winter is really important to me. They have a way of brighten up the darkest days and the provide memories of warmer days ahead. During winter when the garden tends to be quiet, the air is humid and few leaves on the trees, and even fewer insects around at this time of year to pollinate flowers. Thus winter flowers are smaller and colors subtle. It is a great time of year to mix arrangements in smaller vases with larger impact. This time of year, I look for unique greens to balance out smaller flowers such as cabbage leaves and purple artichokes.

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Key to mixing small vases are bottles:

– Start with an odd number of vases/bottles

– Mix the height of bottles and vases

– Pick a color scheme and vary shades (more shades of the same color than new colors)

– Pick 3-5 different types of flowers/foliage

– Assemble each bottle/vase individually with the intent to mix together at the end. Success can be found in varying heights, colors and mixing up flowers.

Enjoy!

 

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There is something about have a two-month-old baby and a three year old that makes me very forgetful. It could also have to do with not getting more than three hours of continuous sleep in the last eight weeks. Anyway, for whatever reason remembering my house keys while running out the door with two kids is of the biggest challenges I face everyday. Last week I locked myself out of the house twice! Once is acceptable, but the second was just flat out embarrassing.

During the forty-five minutes that I was locked outside the door, I revised a plan that would help me remember my keys every time I left the house – A new keychain. The idea of a new key chain brought forward an opportunity for a fun DIY project.

Need Supplies:

Farm Animals or any type of animal, monster or dinosaur (Gjelina has a ton of these small farm animals around the house and if you do not have them than you can buy them at any toy store. I picked these up at the local toy store for $2) | Gold Spray Paint | 5/54” drill bit | Screw Eyes | Key Ring | Keys

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DIY: Animal Key Chains

1. Wash the animals to make sure there is no dirt or sticky material on them –

2. Spray them (let dry for 12 hours). Two coats will make the gold deeper and richer –

3. Drill a starter hole with drill bit –

4. Add the Screw eye and twist until it is fully lodged in the animal –

5. Add key ring and keys –

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I have been making jewelry off and on for the last eight years and six months ago I started to find these beautiful quartz and agate stones. I love to layer my necklaces and these large pendants offered a pop of color and length to my accessory collection. I became obsessed with finding the perfect color and size stones. After I had a few in my collection, I started to give them out to friends for birthdays and other occasions. The friends that had received them requested more of them to give as gifts and we started getting inquires about selling them.

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After request started coming in and we saw a trend in the jewelry market for stones and crystals, we decided to launch a small Etsy shop. Today the Blonded By Style Esty shop is open! We will be constantly updating the shop with jewelry and other handmade gems. If you do not see a color and chain combination that you fancy, you can always email us for a personalized order.

This is only the beginning and we look forward to building out the Blonded By Style Esty shop.

Enjoy!

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I bought two Hemnes bedside tables from Ikea ($69.99) for our guest bedroom. These tables were an affordable option as far as bedside tables go, but I never really liked the knobs or the hardware. After looking at them for over a year, I decided it was time to give them a fresh look and so I ventured down the hardware store and bought two cans of spray paint and new pull drawer hardware. The supplies cost me under $20 and with a few extra hours on a Saturday afternoon my bedside tables have taken on the new look of sophistication.

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DYI Project: IKEA Hack Nightstand

  1. Assemble the bedside table
  2. Remove the drawer face
  3. Spray paint the tables the desired color (dark midnight shown). I would suggest two coats. Make sure the first coat is just a light spray or you will have dripping or bubbling. I would also suggest getting a spray paint with a primer included or priming them first. Also allow 12 hours for paint to fully dry.
  4. Drill in new holes for hardwear (only if hardwer select needs two holes instead of one). If you go with just a knob update than you can use the same hole.
  5. Assemble the table and place in bedroom!

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Bed_1A milestone in Strawberry Blonded life was moving her from her crib to a big girl bed. With Sammy on the way we knew it was time to make the move and so I started hunting for vintage beds. I really loved the look of vintage metal beds that I would see at flea markets and antique shops.

We were going to keep Strawberry Blonded in her small sun-room because we still wanted a queen bed in Sam room for family and guest that stayed at our apartment. The sun room has a beautiful view of the Golden Gate bridge, but it is really small and fitting a twin bed in the room had it challenges.

I was on a hunt one Sunday at Urban Ore in Berkley and came across an old frame that I though could have potential. It was in really bad shape, but the bones were solid and so I decided to make the $40 purchase see if I could restore it back to the original glory.

bed_3Process of restoring the bed:

I first washed the mud and removed all of the wheels from the bed (missing a few anyway). Then sanded off the layer of rust and old paint and put a fresh coat of bright Navy spray paint (two coats) on the frame. I found a handyman that did the sanding and painting for $50.00.

Once I saw the headboard all cleaned up, I purchased a twin size metal frame and we drilled holes in the headboard to hold the frame in place. The challenge was that the original frame had a metal piece that used to hold a metal mesh box spring and we tried, but could not remove the metal from the headboard so we had to attach the new frame bellow the metal piece and then find a solution that allowed the bed to be lifted up four inches on all sides.

The solution was to glue new four-inch legs (painted in the same color) to all four corners of the bed so that it would sit level to the ground. We were forced to find a European Box spring a mattress size due to the size of the bed (it was actually a European length and width). I was able to find the perfect size bed at Ikea.

The duvet is Serena and Lily’s meadowlark collection. I thought it had the perfect hint of pink and I knew the birds would be a hit with Strawberry Bonded. I thought the sheets complimented the bright navy of the bed frame and were a great contrast to the duvet. The Haft Moon Sheet Set were also purchased from Serena and Lily.

I am lucky it all came together, it was a bit challenging at times and we defiantly hit a few roadblocks. There were moments when I wanted to throw the whole project away and yet when I tuck Strawberry Blonded in bed every night, I am reminded of the treasure hunt and I have a sense of accomplishment in the transformation of old back to new again.

 

 

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