A House in Holland

A Fall Wreath and the First Pin It or Make It Linkup Party

I shared this easy-peasy project last week over at Organize and Decorate Everything.  Just in case you missed it, here’s how I made the wreath that is hanging on my front door right now.

Maybe a more appropriate introduction for today’s post would be, “Hi, I’m Ruth, and I’m a Pin-aholic.”  Seriously, I have a bit of an obsession with Pinterest.  (Never heard of it?  Read my Pinterest tutorial.)  I’ve pinned over a thousand 00h-I-just-can’t-wait-to-do-this kinds of things that I’ve found online, and I know you’ve read my weekly “5 Things I Pinned this Week” posts.

So, I thought it was high time for me to quit pinning and get busy working on one of those thousand ideas I’ve collected.  My inspiration?  This pin:

I’m a sucker for wreaths made from things that were never meant to be wreaths (loved this), so I knew that I had to have something like this on my door, pronto.  While the inspiration piece was made from a vintage ceiling medallion, I was pretty sure I could save myself the drive downtown to an architectural salvage warehouse if I stopped by my local hardware store, first.

Sure enough, I found the perfect faux-medallion.  The one thing that surprised me?  The price.  It was over 26 buckaroos–way more than I’m used to spending on door decor.  I tried another local hardware store and found that the ceiling medallions they had were only $6….and bigger, too.  I brought both medallions home and did a side-by-side comparison.

When I compared the two, I discovered that while I loved the price of the $6 medallion, it really only looked like a $6 plastic medallion.  It was thinner and didn’t have great embellishments.  The more expensive medallion actually did look more substantial and was a better size for my door.  Finding a forgotten $10 Home Depot gift certificate in my glove box sealed the deal–I returned the cheaper medallions and let Home Depot take $10 off the purchase price of the original medallion.

I justified that $17 purchase by selecting a neutral color of paint for the medallion.  While I loved the bright color in my inspiration pin, I knew that I could get way more mileage out of my own wreath if I painted it with this simple Rustoleum Heirloom White.

I put on my gloves and sprayed away.  The medallion was painted in a matter of seconds.

While the paint dried on the medallion, I surveyed what I had available for ribbon and trims.  These wide ribbons were just the thing, and I thought I could have some fun with the tassels, too.  (I found the very wide ribbons right next to the tassels in my Hobby Lobby’s upholstery fabrics section.)

Once the paint had dried on the medallion, I had a lot of fun playing with different combinations of my ribbons and trim.

This iridescent aqua and creamy yellow combo looks great with the other colors on my porch, right now.

A muted rust color that’s perfect for fall.

And I thought black would really be stunning with the heirloom white medallion at Halloween–with these pretty orange leaves or maybe even some feathers.

Switching out the various ribbons and trims for each look was a cinch.  I simply looped 2 yards of ribbon around the top of the medallion, and tied it right onto the wreath hanger that hangs over my door.  I added in different accessories before I tied the bow.

To get tassles to hang inside the medallion, I pushed the ribbon through the loop of the tassle before tying the ribbon on.  

If I needed my tassel to have a shorter lenghth, I just tied a little knot in the loop.  The knot was concealed by the wide ribbon. 

I think my favorite combination ended up being the aqua ribbon with autumn leaves.  It’s the perfect look for early fall.  (This is the way I have it on my door, for now.)

This is undoubtedly the priciest craft project I’ve ever displayed on this li’l blog ‘o mine.  I usually try to keep my projects well under the $10 mark.  After seeing how simple and fun it is to switch out the ribbons and accessories, I’ve decided that in this case, I made a worthwhile investment.  I feel much more comfortable paying more for the medallion I liked, knowing that I can quickly change the look of the wreath for almost any holiday or season.

Which of these is your favorite?

Click HERE to view the sites I’m linking to, this week, including:

Tutorials and Tips
Todays Creative Blog
Visit thecsiproject.com
The Idea Room
Just think how much fun I can have with my new wreath at Christmastime!  I’m envisioning a cluster of glass balls with that bow, up there.

Feel free to check out my Pinterest boards and see what other ideas I’m dwelling on, over there.

Welcome to the Very First Pin It or Make It Link Party!

For more information on this party, click HERE.

Now it’s time to linkup to the Pin It or Make It Party.  I’ve showed you mine, you show me yours!  Just grab a button to put on your blog, and click on the button below to create your linkup.  The only rules?  The post you link up must feature either a few of the pins you’ve added to your Pinterest account recently, OR be a project you created based on pins that inspired you.  (Please give credit where it is due!)  And remember, have fun and mingle at this party!

A Trip to Holland
<div align="center"><a href="http://www.atriptoholland.net/2011/10/pin-it-or-make-it-1/‎" title="A Trip to Holland"><img src="http://www.atriptoholland.net/wp-content/uploads/2011/09/cork_board_button_250.jpg" alt="A Trip to Holland" style="border:none;" /></a></div>

Out Visiting and a Fun Announcement

Hello, Friends!

Today I’m over at Organize and Decorate Everything, sharing a tutorial for the wreath that is hanging on my front door this fall.

If you haven’t had a chance to meet Leanne, who blogs at Organize and Decorate Everything, you are missing out!  She has the best ideas for her home.  Go over and check out my wreath and some of Leanne’s fantastic projects, like this one:

Leanne’s Tiny Flag Banner Art

And if you are stopping by my little piece of Holland for the first time, welcome!  I hope you’ll make yourself right at home.  You’re here just in time for something BIG.

And now for a special announcement…

Just to add a little fuel to the fire that is my Pinterest obsession, I’m planning on hosting a monthly linkup party…where everyone else can share their good times on Pinterest, too!

The first Friday of every month will now be a Pin It or Make It Party here in Holland.  Here are the details:

  • The first party begins on Friday, October 7th.  (The link button will remain open for most of the month.)
  • You can link up a post you’ve recently written that features some of your favorite pins–OR, even bettersomething you’ve made using inspiration from your Pinterest boards.
  • Anything {anything appropriate, that is–my daughter reads my blog} is fair game!  Pinning ideas for a themed party?  Have a board devoted to pumpkin pie?  Show me!  Used those pins to pull off a fabulous event or bake the prize-winning pie?  Let’s see what you did!
  • This is a monthly event devoted to the sharing of ideas via Pinterest.  Prove to the world that Pinterest is helping you be more creative, but make sure you give credit where credit is due.  (Please provide links to your pins.)
  • I am in no way affiliated with Pinterest, nor am I being compensated by Pinterest.  Pinterest doesn’t even know who I am.  I’m just having fun, and I want you to have fun, too!
  • Like I said, this is a family-friendly site.  Therefore, I reserve the right to remove any links that I deem inappropriate for my G-rated site.
  • Share the fun by adding a party button to your site (I’ll provide the button and coding later, at the party.)

If you have any questions, feel free to leave a comment below or email me:

atriptoholland {at} gmail {dot} com

$30 Porch Makeover

It’s been a hot summer in our neck of the woods.  We’ve spent way too much of it huddled around the air conditioning for comfort, hardly daring to set foot outside–lest we cook ourselves.  At long last the heat wave ended, and we’ve been able to go out and look around.  While the heat kept our grass short, I saw a few things that had suffered from neglect.  Our front porch was one of them, landing a top spot on the to-do list this week.

Sadly, until I rolled up my sleeves and got to work, this was what greeted our guests:Porch before the makeover

Front door before the makeover

It was obviously a much more comfortable spot for spiders than humans.  

They were definitely spending more time out here than we were.  Until we made it look like this:So, how did I transform this neglected spot with a little elbow grease and $30? [Read more…]

Plates for the Bedroom

No, this is not a post about romantic meals.  Ahem.  It’s about how useful a little white plate thrifted from Goodwill can be when it is sitting on your nightstand.

Back when I redecorated our bedroom with finds from a Goodwill shopping spree, I found three pretty white plates–one large, two small.  They were all the same color, but had slightly different edges.  I loved all three of them, and intended to hang them up on the wall somewhere in this room.  They never made it on the wall.

Seriously, I love those plates, but I felt kind of funny hanging up a plate collection in my bedroom.  What does that say about me?  That I’d rather be eating than sleeping?  It’s deep thoughts like that one that keep me up at night.  (Um, don’t be offended if you have plates in your bedroom for decor.  It’s okay.  I’ll be exploring my bedroom plate aversion in therapy.) [Read more…]

Old Lamps Made New

So, last week I promised to show you pictures of my new-old-lamp sitting in all it’s apple green glory on my nightstand.  The old brass lamp I’d found at my local Goodwill was spray painted and ready for it’s big moment….but was surrounded by piles of books, laundry, mismatched pillowcases, several backpacks, and a thick layer of dust.  Yep, that was the sad state of my bedroom, last week.  Thank goodness I got around to making our master bedroom bright and shiny again over the weekend.  Now I’ll show you the pictures.

Want to see how this

became this?

Sure you do!  It’s an incredibly complicated process.  NOT! [Read more…]

Anatomy of a Lamp

Remember this lamp?  It started out as a vintage brass lamp I found gathering dust in the lighting section of Goodwill.  The shade was found at a Goodwill on the other side of town, slightly damaged but with its Target sticker still attached.  I brought them both home, sprayed the lamp down with Rustoleum, turned the damaged part of the shade to the wall, and voila–I had the perfect bedside lamp for my master bedroom, for less than $10.  (You can read more about how I redecorated my master bedroom with Goodwill finds HERE.)

The only problem was, I had an identical bedside table flanking the other side of my bed.  And it didn’t have an apple green lamp.  Things were looking slightly unbalanced.  So I kept my eyes open for another lamp.  I didn’t want an exact match–this bedroom happens to be pretty matchy-matchy as it is.  My aim was balance.

[Read more…]

Sunflowers from our Garden

We had a happy gardening accident this summer: sunflowers popped up alongside our bamboo!

Endeavor went outside and picked some of them to make a bouquet for our mantle.

I have a thing for sunflowers.  They are just so big and bright and HAPPY. [Read more…]

Grandmother’s Garden

Speaking of garden vegetables, I’ve been meaning to show you pictures of one of my favorite kitchen gardens.  I took some pictures of it while we were in Utah.

My mother-in-law tends a vegetable garden in her backyard that is more than productive: it’s downright pretty!

[Read more…]

The Sandbox

The final installation of the Bionic Man’s work of playscape art was completed earlier this summer.  The long-awaited sandbox is now part of the children’s play area.

This is no ordinary sandbox.  For starters, it is part of the Bionic Man’s playscape design.  Remember the playscape?

When Bionic Man designed this playscape, he did so with his own childhood in mind.  What’s more fun than sand?  Sand and water.  So, Bionic Man not only put sand in the box, he designed a pumping and drainage system to handle water.  Lots of water.

Children of all ages love it.

I think the imaginative play that goes on in the sandbox is worth all the time Bionic Man spent designing it.

It’s a little messy, but how many really, truly fun activities AREN’T a little messy?

Poppy and Grandma had a great time witnessing the grand opening of the sandbox when they visited.

Girls’ Bedroom Switcheroo

Last week, my girls and I worked really hard to get their bedroom cleaned, organized, rearranged, and de-cluttered.  It was a really, really big job.

Our girls share an abnormally large bedroom space, which is both a blessing and a curse.  A blessing, because there is plenty of room for them to store their belongings and play.  A curse, because there is plenty of room for them to store their belongings and play.  Trust me, two walk-in closets is too many in any given bedroom.  (If you think it is hard to keep one child’s closet clean and organized, try keeping two enormous closets clean and organized.)  Um…just realized I’ve written about this problem before–go here if you really want all the nitty-gritty details.

Probably due to the fact that this bedroom is more frequently in chaos than in pretty-for-pictures mode, I have few pictures of it.  In fact, the only ones I found in my files were taken several years ago (Lily is in them!), but are a fairly accurate depiction of the typical disarray.  Here you go:

Lately, we’ve had some conflict between the sisters over the care and keeping of said bedroom space.  (Imagine that–sisters arguing?!?!?!)  They have both demanded their own room.  That’s not in the cards for my girls, so I decided on an alternative plan:  dividing the room in half.  No, I didn’t throw down a chalkline, but I did help the girls rearrange their belongings so that they would each have half the room with the accompanying closet.  Maybe in the future, we can install some type of shelving/room divider.

Before I show you the pictures, I have to offer you a disclaimer:  the pepto-bismol pink walls were already there when we bought the house.  My girls loved those pink walls five years ago, but they are definitely over them…as am I.  It’s going to take a lot of work to strip that wallpaper border and cover the pink with pale blue, but that’s what we’re hoping to do in a few months.

Here’s the “panoramic” tour…

…beginning with the bedroom entrance.  (I wasn’t kidding about Pepto Bismol, was I?)

The wall of closets….
An explanation about those cords you see snaking into the closets.  Both closets were built without any lighting–or easy access to electricity–whatsoever.  We have been very creative with lamps and extension cords.  Seriously, the Bionic Man and I are convinced that the former owners of this home suffered from some sort of light sensitivity (vampires, maybe?), since we have quadrupled the number of installed lights in this house.
Endeavor’s reading nook…(she has a tall bookshelf just inside that closet.)
(Here’s the bookshelf in the closet.)
Endeavor’s bed…..
The back wall of the room, with Superkid’s cottage bookshelf….
…and Superkid’s amazing cottage bed on the wall opposite of Endeavor’s bed…
Here are a couple of different views from inside the bedroom…
Are you dying to know about Superkid’s bed?  Our cottage bed was built by the ever-amazing Bionic Man for both girls, soon after we moved into our home.  He found plans for the bed online, here, ordered them, and built it himself.  We hired an artist to paint the murals–which was much less than we imagined it would be, and turned out much, much better than if we had DIY’ed it.
Originally, Superkid slept on a double bed that fit nicely on the lower level, and Endeavor slept in the second story bunk.  But that all changed when we rearranged the room.  Superkid now has the cottage bed, and Endeavor gets her own space that is (in her viewpoint) more age-appropriate.
Excuse the poor lighting, but here is what it looks like up inside the cottage.
And a look at underneath the cottage, where we created a little office/craft space for Superkid.

The curtain wasn’t part of the original bed, but when I decided to give Superkid “office space”, I felt like I needed something to quickly hide that space, if necessary.  Bedsides, what child doesn’t enjoy their own little spot to hide away?  I had the fabric in my stash (vintage, from Grandma Kitchen’s collection), and all it took was a couple of quick seams and an inexpensive tension rod to create that pretty little nook.

Here’s a look at the side of the bed, with access to the bunk.
We love the details that the artist added.  Stuffed animals get stored in that lowest cubby.
The “shingled” roof is actually made of strips of faux wood panelling.  That Bionic Man is a genius.
Endeavor’s space is a little more grown up.  The little vignette she has created on her bedside table offers a glimpse at the direction the room is going to take when the walls are painted.

My girls are sooooo excited about their new bedroom arrangement.  I’m excited that I don’t have to cringe every time I walk past their room, and that I didn’t have to referee any fights over who was responsible for making the mess while they cleaned their room on Saturday.  Guess what?  It’s been a week since our big cleaning project, and the room remains immaculate.  Score!

Now, I have to tackle sooooo many more spaces before my parents arrive for a visit, this week.  The rest of my house looks like a bomb went off in it over the weekend.  Wish me luck!

I’m linking this post to:

Visit thecsiproject.com

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