Creative Cakes For Your Halloween Party!

 

Looking for something creative for your next Halloween party?  Struggling to come up with that super cool “something” to impress your guests?  Well……how about one of these amazingly creative cakes below.

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How fun is this?

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And how creative is this?

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Or this?

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This lopsided look is fun…..but I admit I don’t know how to do it! 

Or, the ones above or below for that matter:

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Or there’s always the cupcake standby:

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So cute!

So get to work on that party and create your own impressive cake!

Happy Decorating!!

It’s Halloweentime: Party With The Punkin’s!

 

Normally I love decorating for the fall…..all the cozy fall colors and fun décor that’s out there.  There’s something about the fall and fall colors, the smell of cinnamon and other spices, the chill in the air (well, everywhere, but Texas!) that just makes everyone feel snuggly.  But, this year we had a flood in our house so we’ve spent all our time and energy dealing with getting the house repaired.  And, it’s been quite the ordeal.  So the fall decorations have had to be put on hold. 

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But, if I were able to decorate I’d definitely be bringing out the pumpkins.  Cheap, fun and easy – they always punctuate the fall season with their multiple uses and personalities.

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Aren’t they cozy and fun?

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They can have scary personalities….

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Interesting, fun personalities….

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They can be a cute little family of pumpkins…

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Or kind of mean and grumpy.

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You can use them as candle holders and create a cozy walkway of light.

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Cluster them together for a larger display.

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Give them personality and top some candy jars for a festive look.

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What a fun, interesting way to make a pumpkin witch.  Very creative!

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Adorable little spider candleholders.

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And this is a cozy, welcoming way to dress up your yard.

Fun stuff…….sigh!  Oh well, there’s always next year……

Happy Decorating!

Western Chic: Oh So Savvy!

 

If you’re a “little bit western”, but a “whole lot of chic” why not incorporate the two together in your design scheme?  I mean…..talk about a chic, hip look to your home…..Take a look at these pictures below.

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How about this cool cow hide chair?  A little bit western…..a whole lot of chic!

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Love this rustic hutch.

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Great antler chandelier.

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Wouldn’t it be fun to have a cow hide throw draped across your table?

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Or dive into this bed full of this awesome western (but chic) bedding?

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Or just bring a little touch in like this cool bench.

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You can carry your western chic look into the little details like this light switch plate, too.  It makes it fun!

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Give your office chair that western chic flair, too.  Isn’t this one great?

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Love this overly distressed cabinet.  Too cool.

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And take it a step further and bring the look into your everyday dishware.  Aren’t these fun?

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So if you are a tad western and a tad chic…..or a whole lot of western and a whole lot of chic…..bring that to your home and have fun with it!  Make your home reflect your personality. 

Be chic, be unique, be you!

Happy Decorating!

DIY: Refinish Your Table And Chairs In A Weekend For a Fun New Look

 

When I decided I couldn’t stand my kitchen cabinets anymore and they had to be re-stained – it left me with a bit of a dilemma:  My breakfast nook table would no longer match.  It would look old and drab now with new, richly stained cabinets, but I didn’t really want a new table.  I liked the style and size of my old table, I just needed to update the color to work with the new cabinets.  So I asked the guy who would be staining my cabinets what it would cost to do my table, too. To my surprise he said it could cost as much as $1000.00 depending on what was involved.  Ugh!  Well, that made my decision for me.  I would try to tackle it myself.  If it didn’t turn out the way I wanted we would donate it to a ministry that my hubby is involved in providing furniture for Chin refugee’s from Burma.

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So I gathered my things and set up a table to “practice” on.  I knew what look I wanted, but wasn’t 100% sure how to create it so I needed to do some serious experimenting. 

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I got a couple of large white foam boards and went to work doodling around with color and technique.  I had some paints and glaze left over from a client job that I was able to experiment with.  I wanted a rustic, crackled, aged leather type of look for the tabletop….but how to do it was the question.

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So I doodled and mixed and doodled some more.

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To start – I first borrowed my dad’s electric sander and sanded down the entire table.

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It didn’t really take all that long to do.

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Then I wiped it down with a rag and sealed it with this Martha Living Primer/Sealer.

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Next I painted the entire table with this Martha Living Metallic Paint in this bronzy brown color.

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When it was completely dry I topped it with this crackle medium by Folk Art.

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Which gave it a shiny appearance like this.  I let it dry for several hours (that’s what the manager at the store advised me to do to make sure it crackled correctly).

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Then I brushed on this Sherwin Williams paint called Hopsack that I had in my storage shed from a client job.

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Which created a crackled look like this.  Cool, huh?

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I’d seen some really cool, really expensive tables at the World Trade Center here in Dallas that I really wanted my table to look like so I decided take it a step further and try it on my table.  I purchased these stencils from Michael’s, a local craft store and placed them on the table where I wanted them. 

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Then I dabbed on metallic gold with this little sponge. (I placed the fleur dis li at each corner of the table and the other design smack dab in the center.)

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Which looked like this.

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But, I wanted a more distressed look like I’d seen in a showroom so I kept going…

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By mixing four parts of this glaze from Sherwin Williams….

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With one part of this same Martha Stewart paint…

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And for a little glitz I added one part of this metallic to the mixture, too.

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Next I tore several sheets of this plastic wrap so they would be ready to use on the glaze mixture.  After mixing up the glaze I brushed it on the table in sections. Then I crinkled up the plastic wrap, flattened it back out and laid it right on top of each glazed section. I laid the palms of my hands down flat on the plastic wrap and smeared it all around to crinkle up the glaze. I pulled it off gently and then softened some of the edges with a rag. You have to work quickly when doing this so the glaze doesn’t dry and start to show overlap lines.

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I actually ended up running out of plastic wrap so I finished off with these grocery bags.  They did the same thing to create an aged wrinkly, leather look.

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The glaze on top of the crackle gave it an more rustic, old appearance that I really wanted and helped tone down the stencil color.

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Which I also wanted to do. 

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Next, I removed the seat covers on the chairs (this fabric was covered up with chair covers in a different fabric in case you were wondering)….

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And sanded down the chairs.

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I gave them two coats of the Martha Living Bronze Metallic Paint.

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Then for a little added depth and bling I gently, gently dry brushed on this Martha Living Pearl Metallic Paint…..

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By dipping it lightly in the paint and then dabbing almost all of it right back off on a rag.

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When I oh-so-lightly brushed it on it turned like this….with just a little antiquey look.

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I did the same technique to the table legs and I ended up with this look.  Just what I wanted the end result to be!  Rustic, crackled and aged.  Next step is to seal it again with Minwax sealer, but we are having some work done on the house now so I have to wait until we’re dust free again to do it. 

The best part is all the products together amounted to around $85.00 since I had the glaze and paint here already.  I’d say that’s a tad better than a $1000.00.  It took me the weekend, but it was definitely worth the effort.  Hope this inspires you to save yourself some money and do your own refinishing project!

Happy Decorating!

The Front Door: What’s The Best Color For Your Home?

 

It’s not unusual for me to get calls to help someone select exterior paint colors and one thing that stumps a lot of clients in addition to trim is what color to paint the front door.  Most want to do something to give a little “punch”, but are a little gun shy about selecting a bold color.  And, certainly, certain bold colors for particular neighborhoods just don’t work so you have to take that into consideration.

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One color that is almost always a safe bet, but definitely adds some punch is a red door.  Kind of like “lipstick” on your house – it just adds a little oomph and finishes off the front with a bit of class.

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And, of course, the other no fail classic is a black front door.  Understated, but very nice.

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But, if you wanted……if your neighborhood warranted such a thing…..what if you went all out with color like this door above?  Very cool.

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Or what about a hot pink door?  Too much for your neighborhood? Or, maybe just the right touch?

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Ochre yellow could be a nice choice….

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Or maybe even this bright yellow.

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Soft teal has a soothing, welcoming vibe….

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Grassy green has a catchy look…

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Or even lime green ????

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And, again…..if your neighborhood warrants such a color….how ‘bout this purplish pink?  Doesn’t it look cool in this charming, bohemian-esque neighborhood?

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If not……you can always go back to another classic like this navy blue.

Lots of fun colors to choose from so don’t by shy.  Be reasonable, though, and don’t tick of your neighbors with something too outlandish.  Think curb appeal…..think about greeting your guests with a smile.  Your front door is the smile to your home if you will.  So give it some thought and give it some color!

Happy Decorating!

Office Re-do: Chic, Savvy, “Girlie”

 

I’ve decided to re-do my office a tad.  Gone is the old desk and wall unit I bought a million years ago.  You know the one – cherry wood, boxy, no personality.  It could fit in a man’s office just as easily as a woman’s.  Time to glam it up a bit!  I’ve tried to girlie it up somewhat, but lately I still feel like I’m working in a dungeon.  So now it’s time to freshen, brighten and update.  I need that in my life right now.  Especially since I spend so much of my time in here.

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So what to do….what to do.  Should I go pink?  That’s girlie.

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Maybe bring in a zebra rug and a glass top desk?

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Or maybe I should go Hollywood glam.  So chic, so savvy!

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Love the hot pink, lime and soft brown.  What a fun combination.  I’d love a warm and cozy office like this.

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Cool office chair and wall art.   Fun, personal – unique.

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And, how about this canopy?  That would be fun.

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Modern meets traditional in shades of white and off white.  Girly, yet sophisticated.

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Purple with black and white would be a bright, fresh look.

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Melon pink is girly and fun, too.  What to do….what to do…..

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Do I want sleek, white, modern……

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Or “antiquey”, quirky and colorful.  (Interesting the way they paired this desk with a modern chair.)

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So sweet and girly……love, love, love that.

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Maybe I should do a faux brick wall.  This look is interesting and cozy, too.

Hmmmm……so many choices.  What to do, what to do…….I’m working on in it now and will let you know what I decide.  Wish me luck!

Happy Decorating!

The Perfect Wedding Cake: Fun, Funky, Fabulous!

 

For those of you who are getting married, have a daughter or son getting married, or are just helping with a wedding – you can’t help but dream about that perfect wedding cake.

And, there are so many styles, colors and themes to choose from now….

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It can be a daunting decision to make.  Would a fun, funky cake be the best choice?…..

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Or, perhaps something more classic and serious….

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Perhaps a hostess Twinkie cake is the perfect cake for you????

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Or maybe something magical and whimsical….

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Or a bit “dark” and whimsical.

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Is simple and pretty more your style????….

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Or not so simple, but oh-so pretty???…..

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You could always go bright and colorful…..

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Or even classic and humorous……

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See how much fun selecting the cake can be???  Did you realize all the many choices you have?  Make your cake personal, make it unique to you.  Be serious and classic or lighthearted and fun.  Whatever is “you”!!!!! 

Most of all have fun!!!

Happy Decorating!!!!!

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