Archive for November, 2014

Holiday Dinner Themes

Written by creatingyourspace on . Posted in Holiday

If you’re hosting a holiday dinner this year, consider setting your table and the day apart from the others by incorporating a theme. Themes can be a fun way to bring everyone together; guests can be informed ahead of time so they can coordinate with food, clothes, gifts, and party favors to match. While a theme isn’t necessary to enjoy the day, it can go a long way toward making the holiday more fun for everyone.

Color Themes

One of the simplest ways to incorporate a theme into your day is through color. By picking a palette and running it throughout the house and the dinner table, you can produce a cohesive effect that is charming and polished at the same time.

Some color themes to consider include:

  • Holiday lights – draw your inspiration from the colors used to light the season.
  • Outdoors  – look to the colors of the trees, sky, and surrounding nature to decorate your house in.
  • Favorite color – the color theme you choose doesn’t have to be fall or holiday related; you can choose a favorite family color that your guests will embrace as well.

Sports Themes

Does your family like to gather to watch the game after the meal? If this is a tradition that you already have as part of your holiday, why not take it a step further and make it the theme of the day. Decorate your table in your favorite team’s colors, and incorporate jerseys, banners, and helmets into your design.

Outdoor Themes

If you live in an area surrounded by nature, why not bring some of it indoors to create an outdoor holiday theme? Cut armfuls of tree branches that still have brightly colored leaves attached, pine swags, and pinecones and bring them in to decorate your home with. You can take this a step further by taking these colors and using them throughout the table as well.

Kid Friendly

If there are going to be lots of kids at the table this year, why not make the whole dinner kid friendly? Incorporate a craft at the beginning of the day to decorate the house with – paper trees, stars, and or party hats all make great decorations. You can also include things like paper plates for easy cleanup, and some favorite kid foods like mac-and-cheese on the menu.

Making the Most of Small Bedrooms

Written by creatingyourspace on . Posted in Hints, Tips and Advice

Bedrooms come in nearly every shape and size imaginable. And while most interior design ideas focus on large master bedroom suites that can incorporate separate seating areas, dressing rooms, and conversation areas, there are many homes that have much smaller bedrooms as well. And while these bedrooms are small, it doesn’t mean that their interior design or furniture layout should be overlooked. In fact, the right layout in a small space can have a major impact on the way that a room feels, so the right arrangement of furniture in a small bedroom can make the space feel even larger.

Make the Most of Your Floor

The right type of floor covering can change the feel of your room.  Worn carpet will close the space in a small bedroom quickly, drawing the eye down.  Light carpet or a wood floor brightens a small space and opens the room dramatically.   

Furniture Spacing

Furniture spacing is one of the most difficult things to consider in a small bedroom. After all, you usually have to fit in a bed, pair of night tables, and at least one dresser and some bedrooms may have even more furnishings included.

Ideally, there should be about 36-inches of space around three sides of your bed. This gives the best walking space through the room. If this isn’t possible, however, due to space constraints, aim for between 18 and 24-inches of space around the bed. This may influence where you place the bed, as well as the size of some of the other furnishings, such as dressers if they need to be placed nearby.

Don’t Clutter

Take a good look at each piece of furniture you intend to place in the bedroom, and ask yourself if you really need it. Things like jewelry chests or bookcases might be better off somewhere else to help open up the space in the bedroom to make it feel less cluttered.

Make Use of the Walls

If you can’t fit in things you truly want in the bedroom like storage or bookcases, consider looking up rather than down. By mounting some of your furniture on the wall, you don’t take up valuable floor space, and you can often increase the amount of storage space in the entire room at once. By hanging shelves above a dresser, for example, you can store extra items like sweaters or books, without having to take up any more room.

Creating Cornucopia Centerpieces

Written by creatingyourspace on . Posted in Holiday

The cornucopia horn is one of the most traditional and well known symbols of the harvest and of Thanksgiving. They can be displayed on your table, mantel, or anywhere in your home all autumn long or set out just for the main holiday meal. There are also lots of ways that you can create your own cornucopia, spinning off from the original design to create something a little more unique or personalized for your home and for the season.

Wicker Horns

Wicker horns are fairly easy to find, and make excellent starting points for your cornucopia. You can find them as baskets or as table settings; just remove any handles before beginning, as you will want to flatten out one end and lay it on its side. To stop it from rocking or rolling, find a few sticks or branches in a similar color to the horn and glue to them onto the bottom sides so the horn stays stable.

Filling the Horn

While the traditional horn is filled with fruits and vegetables of the harvest, this isn’t always the most practical option for interior design. Fruits don’t last forever, and wax or plastic fruit often doesn’t have the same look. Try one of these ideas instead to create your own cornucopia look without the risk of rotting fruit:

  • Fill the horn with a variety of autumn leaves taken right from the trees. Just clip several twigs and branches and arrange them like you would flowers before inserting them into the horn. To make them last longer, soak a piece of foam in water first, then tuck the twigs into the foam before inserting the entire thing into the horn.
  • Take your fake fruit and try spray painting it gold or silver before setting it in the horn. The spray paint adds a little extra dimension that masks the fact that the fruit is fake and creates some glamour instead.
  • Collect a variety of different pinecones and acorns, and fill your horn with these symbols of autumn instead of fruit. They have the same appeal of the harvest, but with a natural and long lasting characteristic as well.

How To Design and Make a Custom Headboard Featuring Your Favorite Photography – Part 4

Written by creatingyourspace on . Posted in Family

Part 4:  Photo Selection and Hanging the Photos

Whew! The labor intensive part of the project is done. It’s time to spend an afternoon admiring photography you love and framing it.

PHOTO SELECTION

Decide which photos will go in which frames, and then order prints to size. We highly recommend that you print low resolution test copies on your home printer to be sure they will fit in the frame the way that you envision. Once you’re ready to print, you can do so on your home printer. We recommend ordering them because the cost is low, the ink is colorfast, and you can typically pick them up in as little as an hour. If you intend to use superior quality prints just be sure to plan for the additional time it will take for them to be processed. 

Not sure which photos to use? You don’t necessarily have to use photos of people you know. You can base the photos on a theme such as nature, travel, or art. Let your imagination run wild!

HANGING THE PHOTOS

Refer back to your sketch to determine placement. Avoid the temptation to hang everything in one section before moving on.  The outcome will be most successful if you move around the headboard area while hanging the pictures so that any small errors in placement are undetectable when you’re done.  You can hang them with nails if you like, but the frames will tend to shift and move. Damage free adhesive tabs work well. They’re two sided. One side attaches to the wall, the other to the back of the frame and they secure in place with super strong Velcro. They also remove from the wall cleanly if you need to change things or correct a mistake.

FINISHED

You’re done! Make the bed and admire your creation. It wasn’t easy, but as we said at the beginning, it’s well worth it. You now have a one-of-a-kind headboard that will serve as an impressive and expressive focal point in your bedroom.

GO BACK AND READ

PART 1: The concept and supply list

PART 2: Preparation and Framing the Headboard

PART 3: Paint and Attach, Picture Frame Layout 

How To Design and Make a Custom Headboard Featuring Your Favorite Photography – Part 3

Written by creatingyourspace on . Posted in Family

Part 3:  Paint and Attach, Picture Frame Layout

PAINT AND ATTACH

Paint two coats minimum inside the frame you drew on the wall with the pencil. It’s important to use a color different from the rest of the wall so that the headboard looks like a feature separate from the wall. If desired, paint the molding. No need to paint the back, just the parts that will be visible.

After all the paint is dry, attach the molding to the wall. Ask someone to help you hold all three pieces in place first. Stand back and make sure all the lines are straight and even. One piece at a time, run a line of wood glue down the center of the molding, place it against the wall, and ask someone to hold it while you use small nails to secure it in place. You now have the frame of your headboard. Put your bed back in place with just a sheet on it so you can proceed with the project. 

Gather various picture frames. Standing at the foot of the bed, lay them on the bed and use it as the template for the headboard. Arrange and rearrange the frames as many times as necessary until you have a configuration that pleases you. We encourage you to situate them as if they were a collage, but if you’re a fan of modern décor you can try rows or columns. Once you love it, sketch the layout you’ve created on a piece of paper so you can refer to it when it’s time to hang the pictures.

NEXT READ PART 4: Photo Selection and Hanging the Photos

GO BACK AND READ

PART 1: The concept and supply list

PART 2: Preparation and Framing the Headboard 

How To Design and Make a Custom Headboard Featuring Your Favorite Photography – Part 2

Written by creatingyourspace on . Posted in Family

Part 2:  Preparation and Framing the Headboard

Now that you have all of your supplies, let’s dive in.

PREPARATION

With the bed in place, use a pencil and yard stick (or straight edge) to draw the outlines of the headboard frame on the wall. This is where the molding will be attached to the wall. Ensure that it is a bit wider than the mattress so the bed sits within the dimensions of the headboard, and that it is high enough. If you’re bed isn’t yet on a bed frame, prop it up on four blocks that will raise it to the height it will eventually be. Otherwise your custom headboard will be too low. Also give considerations to the framed photography. The frames need to hang higher than where your pillows rest when the bed is made, as well as when you are sitting up in bed. 

FRAMING THE HEADBOARD

Move the bed out of the room. Measure all three sides of the frame you drew and use the dimensions to cut the molding. You’ll have two symmetrical pieces on each side and a long piece across the top. To make it look like an actual frame, miter cut the edges where the boards meet. Choose a design that coordinates well with the rest of the room. If you want to paint it, buy wood molding. If black or white will work, MDF molding comes ready-made in those colors.

NEXT READ PART 3: Paint & Attach, Picture Frame Layout

GO BACK AND READ PART 1: The concept and supply list

How To Design and Make a Custom Headboard Featuring Your Favorite Photography – Part 1

Written by creatingyourspace on . Posted in Design and Decorating

Part 1: The concept and supply list

This project isn’t necessarily fast or easy, but the outcome is spectacular! A headboard is one of the most impactful focal points in a bedroom. It deserves extra thought and effort, but that doesn’t necessarily mean a lot of extra cost. You can definitely accomplish this project for less than the cost of a designer bed. Once you complete this headboard project all you’ll need for your bed is a basic frame on which to place the mattress and box spring. These are often available second hand in perfect condition.

The quantity, and thus cost, of the supplies necessary to complete this project will depend on the size of your bed. The overall concept entails painting the space above the bed where a headboard would normally be, than framing it with molding. Within the newly framed headboard space will hang an eclectic collection of picture frames featuring your favorite photography. 

Let’s start with your shopping list:

  • Paint – 2 colors that coordinate with your bedroom. Purchase amounts applicable to the size of your project. You need enough paint to paint two coats on the wall within the frame created by the molding. The other paint color will only be used for the molding and some of the picture frames so you won’t need very much.
  • Yard stick or long straight edge for penciling in the lines of the frame.
  • Molding.
  • Miter saw OR small handheld saw.
  • Numerous picture frames of various sizes, dimensions, and designs, in colors that coordinate with your bedroom.
  • Prints of your favorite photos. We’ll explain later how to determine the size.
  • Hammer and small wood nails.
  • Wood glue.
  • Picture hangers or damage-free adhesive tabs.

NEXT READ PART 2: Preparation and Framing the Headboard 

How to Paint an Old Wood Table So It Will Last

Written by creatingyourspace on . Posted in Design and Decorating

Remodeling a kitchen is a big project, and it’s smart to spend your money on high quality flooring, cabinets and countertops. Anything built into the kitchen for long term use is a worthwhile investment. If you’re like most modern families there’s a good chance that you eat in the kitchen, so it is a good idea to include the kitchen table in the redecorating process as well. Rather than buy something new, though, consider painting an old table. It will be less expensive, have a lot of character, and you can paint it to match your kitchen perfectly.

  1. Sand the table. If you have access to an orbital sander it’s ideal for the job. Hand sanding is an option but plan on a lot of extra time. Sand the table until it’s very smooth. It’s not imperative that you remove every last speck of paint or varnish.
  2. Wipe the table clean and remove any dust. Next, apply primer. It’s important to purchase a primer that is intended to resist stains, so check the label when you buy the primer. Be sure that it is also high-tack. You want it to stick to the table like glue. Use roll on primer – spray primers aren’t strong enough for a heavy use items such as a kitchen table. Use two coats of primer, allowing at least one hour drying time in between. Then, use a spray on primer on any tiny areas that can’t be primed with the roller. When done, let the table dry for a full 24 hours.
  3. Hand sand the primed surface to restore to a smooth and even surface. (No orbital sanding this time. It’s too aggressive.)
  4. Next, use highly durable paint that dries to a hard finish. It has to withstand heavy use. You will likely be doing more than just eating at the table so ensure that it can withstand science projects and game night. Paint the table with two to three thin coats of paint, and allow sufficient drying time between each. (Three coats are necessary for very dark colors.) Allow the paint to cure for three to five days once painting is completed.
  5. Last, protect the table and the paint. It’s important to not skip this step! You have two options. You can use a brush/wipe on product that will dry to a sleek finish. Or, you can use a wax finish. It’s rubbed on with a rag, and then buffed out to create a low gloss matte finish.
  6. Try not to use the table for a few more days after you’ve put the protective coating on it. It will appear to be dry, but two to three more days will ensure that it has definitely cured and is ready for some serious use.