Friday

Simple Fall Baby Shower

I hosted a simple fall baby shower at my home this past weekend.  I wanted to make it pretty, but didn't want to spend a lot on decorations that would just get thrown away at the end of the day.  So I focused on using what I had with a few inexpensive items mixed in.

I actually thought it might be fun to try to challenge myself by buying most of the things from the dollar store and I ended up sticking to that for the most part.

This was my first attempt at a naked cake.  Look at it from straight on and it's pretty good, but things get a little more "rustic" when you look at it from other angles.  As long as it tastes good that's all that matters right?  I added some fake peonies to the top and they actually are surprisingly realistic looking.  


I picked up these disposable coffee cups from the dollar spot at Target and borrowed the flowers from my daughter's room.  


I love using these gold bottles for coffee syrup.


We kept the food spread really simple too.  It was an afternoon shower so most people had just eaten lunch.  We had coffee, this fall punch, cake, cheese and crackers, and apples with cream cheese fruit dip.


This cutting board was a Homegoods find, but this one has a similar feel.


I made this print and popped it in a dollar tree frame. 


Feel free to print one for yourself if you would like!

I always love getting a chance to use my milk glass.  I really don't use it often enough!


And I made another faux real floral arrangement with my pumpkin vases.  I got some more fresh eucalyptus and added some of the fake peonies that I had leftover from the bunch I bought for the cake.  I love that I can keep using these flowers over and over again. 


The wrapping paper was another dollar tree find.  I love using wrapping paper for parties like this.  It's perfect for a table runner.

I also almost always get my plates, cups, and napkins from the dollar tree.  They aren't anything fancy but the price can't be beat and they have lots of different colors.


These little battery powered lights were an after Christmas find, but these would be fun too!


My mom let me use this vintage pink plate/bowl set that was my grandmother's.  I love the subtle pink touch.



I also gave this dollar store banner a makeover with some glue and gold glitter.




This drink dispenser was a gift several years ago.  I bought this white pedestal in the dollar spot at Target and it elevates it just enough so you can get a cup under the spout.  




It was a fun shower and I think the mama to be felt loved, which is the most important thing!

Wednesday

Pink Fall Table Setting

I hosted a fall-ish themed baby shower over the weekend and I thought it would be fun to reuse the centerpieces to create a fall tablescape.  The jumping off point was these fake peonies.  I love real peonies, but they can get pretty pricey and are only in season for such a short time.  I've seen lots of pink this year for fall and I'm loving it!


The gold polka dot napkins were an old Marshall's find, but these look similar.


I grouped together some thrifted brass candlesticks and my faux real pumpkin arrangements to create a simple centerpiece.  






Mixing in the eucalyptus with the fake flowers really helps them look more realistic.  I never thought I'd like fake flowers so much, but they are really growing on me!  No pun intended ;)  




Have you started decorating for fall yet?  It's still pretty warm here, but decorating at least makes me feel like the cooler weather will be here sooner!

Monday

Neutral Fall Table Setting

For me October is when things really start to feel like fall.  So for today's Moodboard Monday I did a roundup of items that would make a cozy, neutral fall table setting.  The great part is, other than the pumpkin, these items can be used all year round and even easily transition to Christmas.

1. Eucalyptus Garland - Y'all know I love eucalyptus!  This is a great faux option.  I would use this as a centerpiece for the table and weave it through some white pumpkins of all different sizes.

2. Large & Small candlesticks - These are great for anywhere and anytime of year.  They're a good staple decor item to have around.  I would use them grouped together in the center of the table, mixed in with the eucalyptus and white pumpkins I mentioned above.  I would do an odd number, three small and two large.  You could line them up in a row or disperse them randomly.

3. Wood Chargers - I love using organic materials anytime of year, but especially during the fall!  These would add the perfect natural element to the table.

4. Blanket Scarf - I've been seeing lots of tablescapes draped with cozy blankets and I love that look.  This is actually a scarf you would wear, but I think it would work perfectly for a table setting.  Just drape it across the table diagonally.  And when you are done with it, add it to your wardrobe :)

5. Gold Flatware - Gold Flatware is another home decor staple.  It's perfect for anytime of year, but adds some nice warmth in the fall.  

6. Black Dinnerware - I don't know why, but black screams fall to me.  I love the depth it would add to this table setting.

7. White Pumpkin Baker - We make a lot of soup this time of year and I think it would be so fun to serve it in this!

*This post contains affiliate links, which means I earn a small commission (at no cost to you) if you purchase some of the items listed in this post.  As always I only share things that I love and think you will too!

Friday

Kids Art Storage Frame

I've been debating changing up the playroom a little bit lately.  Nothing big, but maybe switching the paint color and moving a few things around.  Then I saw this gallery wall and it inspired me to do something a little different with the way we displayed the kids' art.  I used the IKEA wire system to display art before, but I really liked the idea of a gallery wall in here.  So when I came across these frames on clearance and I was sold! 


The best part about these frames is they open up and you can store extra artwork inside and easily switch it out!  So smart!  I always felt like it was a little bit of a hassle to switch things out before, but this makes it so easy. 


 I also think these would be great for family pictures.  I always want to change them out on my picture ledge but never get around to it.  Just store the extra ones inside and switch them out as your family changes and grows or go back to the older ones when you want to take a walk down memory lane.  I might grab a few more and do just that!  

I just started on the gallery wall today and will hopefully be sharing it next week!

*This post contains affiliate links, which means I earn a small commission (at no cost to you) if you purchase some of the items listed in this post.  As always I only share things that I love and think you will too!

Wednesday

Free Fall Printables

One of my favorite, super affordable, ways to update my home with the seasons is to change out the artwork.  I like to look on places like Etsy, but I also really enjoy creating my own printables.  I either use quotes or images from places like The biodiversity library.  I've shared my love of the biodiversity library before (here and here).  It's basically a database full of royalty free scanned images from old books.  It is really fascinating just to look through all the images.  There are lots of botanicals, animals, and other random things.  

Something about the warm earth tones of vintage botanicals makes me think of fall.  Here are a few of my favorites that I found on the biodiversity library


I like the vintage background, but if you want to clean it up a little you can always do that in a program like photoshop.


I love the deep plum color for fall.


Love all the acorn prints in this album.







I also like just creating simple black and white quote printables.



We like to keep things more lighthearted for halloween, but if you prefer things that are a little more spooky they have a whole album full of bats and another one full of spiders.

You should be able to right click and save any of these images and print them for your home.  I like to print mine at the UPS store so I can do larger sizes and not waste all my ink.  You can also do it at most any office supply store, like Staples or Office Max.  Do you have any favorite ways to update your home with the seasons?

Monday

Moodboard Monday - Affordable Runners

There's definitely a trend with pretty, vintage runners in kitchens these days.  They really can make such a statement in an otherwise neutral kitchen.  I love the look of them, but they can get pricey.  So I've rounded up some great runners that would be perfect for your kitchen without breaking the bank.  In fact, all of these are under $100!
1 /  2  /  3  /  4  /  5  /  6  /  7  /  8 

*This post contains affiliate links, which means I earn a small commission (at no cost to you) if you purchase some of the items listed in this post.  As always I only share things that I love and think you will too!

Friday

How to Upgrade a Builder's Grade Home

If I could go back and tell my first time home buyer self one thing, it would be don't go with any of the builder's upgrades!  Our first home was a new construction home that was almost complete when we bought it.  We had a little time to upgrade a few things, but most of the finishes were already picked.  Although I would have preferred a different color countertop and cabinet color most of the things were neutral so we were ok with that.  We did decide to make a few minor upgrades, but nothing major.  Looking back I wouldn't have chosen any of the upgrades for a few different reasons.  Typically you pay more for the upgrades than it would be to hire them out down the road and you're also mortgaging them versus just paying out of pocket.  Also, most of the time the options for the upgrades aren't the best, unless you are buying on the higher end side.

So instead of choosing the builder's upgrades, I would do these simple things to create a home that stands out amongst all the others in your neighborhood.  And the great things is, these ideas don't just apply to a new home, they can make any home feel more custom.

1.  Don't be afraid to paint

Paint is your best friend when it comes to transforming a home.  It's definitely one of the biggest bangs for your buck and anyone can do it!  If you aren't sure what colors to pick, look on Pinterest and get some ideas of colors that appeal to you.  When I'm choosing a color, I always like to do a google image search of that color first to see what it looks like in different homes with different lighting.  Just google the color and then click on the images tab at the top.  I also like to get paint samples just to be on the safe side.  It's worth the few extra dollars in my opinion.  It can look so different on the walls vs. that tiny little chip.    


See more of our living room here.

Don't be afraid to go with a bold color choice if you love it!  It's just paint and can easily be changed if you change your mind down the road.


See more of our bedroom makeover here.

2. Paint your cabinets

I know the thought of painting your cabinets can seem overwhelming, but it makes such a difference! And you can always hire out if your budget allows.  



You can see more of our kitchen makeover here along with my painting process.

And if the thought of painting your kitchen cabinets is daunting, start with a smaller space like a bathroom.



You can see more of this bathroom makeover here.


You can see more of this bathroom from our first house here.  And if you aren't up for painting your cabinets this is a great post for making your current color work.

3.  Switch Out Your Drawer Pulls

Changing out your drawer pulls makes such a difference too!  We kept the knobs in our kitchen to cut down the cost and switched out just the handles.  Just measure the distance between the holes for the handles and look for ones with the same measurement.  


4.  Change Out Your Light Fixtures

My mom taught me how to change out a light fixture several years ago, and it's come in handy more times than I can count.  If you don't know how to do it you can find several youtube tutorials.  If you've never done it before, you won't believe how simple it is!


You can find more info on these light fixtures here.


5.  Replace the Towel Bars

Towel bars are definitely functional, but if you want a more custom look it's easy to switch them out and it's pretty inexpensive too.  I prefer using hooks in a bathroom because it's easier for the kids to hang their towels on them. 


These DIY lucite towel rings are a favorite of mine and they are super inexpensive!


You can find more info on this room here.

We also took down the towel bar above our bathtub and replaced it with some pretty art.  We rarely use the bathtub and so the towel bar wasn't functional for us.  I'm amazed at how much better it looks without it.  Just because the builder put it there doesn't mean you have to keep it there!

6.  Hang Some Curtains

Hanging curtains always makes a room feel more finished and can even make the room feel bigger.  I like to hang mine high and wide.  I usually go about six inches to the side of the window and I only use panels that are at least 95" in length.  Sadly most of the stores still only carry the 84" length but you can find lots of great longer options here.


You can find these DIY curtains here.  

And if your windows are on the small side or you just want to make them look bigger, you can use this trick.


What are your favorite, simple ways to update your home?