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Are you pumpkin crazy yet?

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Good morning Loves.  Well it’s the last week of October and I don’t know about you, but I had a great month.  On October 1st BF and I moved into our gorgeous new apartment (I promise once we’re settled I’ll share pics) and on October 9th I turned 34 years old.

Decorating according to the season

I know I’ve mentioned this before but I just love fall.  It’s definitely my favorite season for a variety of reasons such as the beautiful landscape colors, the wardrobe options – I love sweaters and boots, my birthday and of course pumpkin.  I look forward to pumpkin flavored everything this time of the year from home scents to hot beverages – yes you know the one I’m talking about.

Oh yes I am one of those people who follow seasonal trends.  Right now our apartment is full of anything and everything that smells like apple orchards and pumpkin patches.  In the next few months I’ll switch it up and all rooms in my new apartment will smell like evergreens and Christmas cookies.  Oh yes I love this time of the year.

Are you buying into the pumpkin craze?

So here’s my question, have you gone pumpkin crazy like I have?  I know some people think the pumpkin hype is just a marketing tactic used by retailers to kick off the shopping season, and maybe they’re right.  I for one don’t care.  I love celebrating the change of seasons, this time of year I go pumpkin crazy, in the winter I buy new mittens (yes every year) in the spring I buy a fresh bouquet of flowers and come summer I get a pedicure to kick off the warm season.  Those are just my traditions and I like them.  So what if the anticipation of pumpkin season is all a marketing scheme made up by Starbucks and Bath & Body Works, I like my apartment to smell good and I like to enjoy a hot coffee to keep warm.

What pumpkin things have you bought so far?

Did you notice the so far?!  That’s because it’s not over yet.  We don’t have to start thinking about Christmas for at least another month, so let’s enjoy fall while it’s still here.  My mother takes the change in seasons to a whole other level; she decorates her house according to the time of year.  If you were to visit my mother right now you would find a fall wreath on the outside of her front door, Halloween decorations all over her house and a beautiful pumpkin inspired table center piece that most likely looks like The Horn of Plenty.  Maybe that’s where I get it.

So far this year I’ve indulged in half a dozen Pumpkin Spiced Lattes from Starbucks, there is just something so comforting about a hot beverage on a cold fall afternoon.  I bought a pumpkin pie for BF and I to eat as dessert on Thanksgiving (remember we’re Canadian so we celebrated Thanksgiving at the beginning of October), I have three fall flavored candles burning in my apartment right now and two other Wallflower scent diffusers that are filled with Pumpkin Cupcake flavored oil.  Then of course there is our actual pumpkin which is already carved because I wanted to roast the pumpkin seeds.  Now that I’m writing it all out I’m thinking to myself WOW that’s a lot of pumpkin.

What’s your favorite fall flavor?

Photo from Flickr

DIY decorating: My new bathroom

Benjamin Moore Palladian Blue walls. Love the shelf space under the sink and the "ladder" towel rack.

Good morning Loves.  BF and I are moving in a mere two days.  Over the past two weeks my mind has been racing with all the logistics of this move as well as decorating ideas for our new apartment.  As it turns out I have absolutely no sense of personal style or taste.  I am the type of person who would buy everything in dark brown and assume it matched well.  So this is my plea, I need your help decorating my new apartment.

How did you pick your new home decor?

My OCD and inability to make a decision (I am a Libra after all) has kept my mind racing over the last few days which resulted in many sleepless nights.  I don’t even know where to begin.  All I know is our new apartment is more than twice as big as our old apartment and I want it to look completely different.

I want our new apartment to be cozy and welcoming.  I want it to be matchy-matchy with some dashes of color and it can’t be too girly because I want BF to be comfortable.  Oh and we need to do it on a budget.  We need to buy furniture as well as decor; I mean everything from drapes to a new sofa.  I also really want a buffet, I’ve never had one and I would love to hang a big mirror over top.

Where did you learn to decorate?

I have absolutely no idea what to do when it comes to decorating, I mean like literally no ideas.  I don’t know if my area rug should match the drapes and if my furniture has to all be the same color.  If my living room and dining room are an open space concept can one have yellow accents and the other red?

The truth is I would just love to hire a professional decorator to come in and turn my new apartment into a home, but I just can’t afford it.  I would also love to hire a Feng Shui expert to come in and set everything up so BF and I have nothing but love, prosperity and good vibes in our new apartment, but he thinks it’s a waste of money.  Besides who needs to spend money on interior decorators when you have awesome online friends?

Do you use Pinterest for home decor ideas?

So in an effort to save money and learn to make things pretty I took to Pinterest for ideas on how to decorate my new apartment.  If you follow me on Pinterest you may have noticed that my pins went from their usual travel destinations to home decor such as pillows, sofas and bedrooms.  Although I would like to blink my eyes and have it all done, I have come to the reality that it is probably going to take me a good six to twelve months to get my apartment looking exactly how I want it.

For my first DIY decorating project I decided to start with the smallest room in the apartment – our new bathroom.  I need to find a balance between clean, colorful and functional.  Once we decide on the color scheme we will need to buy new towels, mats and accessories and we will also need to buy a storage unit, either an armoire or a bar cart style unit.  What do you think?

Here are some DIY ideas I found on Pinterest:

Painting bathroom walls a calming blue is an easy way to add color to your bathroom. #decorating <3 this bathroom--Benjamin Moore Palladian Blue Bathroom and planked walls! i am in LOVE with the tiffany blue in this bathroom. i can see me doing this in my house some day!

Design star lessons you can actually live with

couch pillowsI’m a huge HGTV fan and love reading magazines like HGTV Magazine, Better Homes & Gardens, you name it. And while I do sometimes get some unrealistic ideas from them (I still have yet to reupholster that garage sale rocking chair I was so excited about when I bought it), for the most part, I’ve learned some surprisingly down to earth tips from the designers on these shows and in these magazines that are totally doable.

Some of my favorite design lessons you can actually live with?

Mixing Is Good

Old and new…high and low…patterns and textures. I used to think that “style” meant having everything all matchy-matchy and following one specific “look” (traditional, contemporary, etc.).

But some of the coolest rooms I’ve seen by the pros are the ones that don’t have any one style but are a mixmash of several different things. Vintage pieces and world travel finds combined with modern line furniture. Rough earthy fabrics combined with super feminine patterns. It gives a room a real personality and makes it totally one of a kind.

Decorate Over Time

Especially as a new homeowner, you want to get everything “just so” in time for your first house party and think that means your decorating is done. But real decorating evolves over time…you add a piece here, take out a piece there, move this item from one room to another.

Our lives don’t stay frozen in time, so our homes shouldn’t, either. They should grow with us. I’ve changed up parts of our home a dozen times since we first moved in, and every time I change something, I like it even better.

“Lived In” is OK

I am so guilty of the “make it looks like it does in a magazine” fantasy. I like to have all the pillows on my sofa lined up just so. I’d prefer the countertop never have any dirty dishes or mail on it and the furniture never have any scratches or scuffs. (Part of that is my neat freak OCD, hahaha.)

But so many designers lately are saying how important it is that a house look lived in. The Hubby and I still have a lot of hand-me-down furniture from relatives because we just didn’t have the money when we moved in to buy all new stuff…and we’ve made it work for us. Our living room may never look like a show room, but it looks comfortable and cozy and homey…and that’s what I really want to come home to at the end of the day, not a “perfect” generic show room

What about you? What design rules do you like because you can actually live with them? (And which do you think are ridiculous?) :)

 

~Heart,

Em

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photo credit: ooh_food

Gardening ideas

Petunia 'Wave'My green thumb is starting to get itchy.

When we moved into our house several years ago, the front yard was in decent enough shape. I didn’t love the landscaping, but it was neat and tidy (a few shrubs on each side of the front stoop, with flowers between them), and we had so much work to do inside the house that I just stuck with it.

But this year, as I’m watching our neighbors dig up their flowerbeds and plant new things, I’m starting to get antsy to make the front yard really “ours.” I’m not sure exactly what I’m envisioning, but I’m thinking maybe some window boxes, flowers along the walkway, and painting the front door a different color. I also know I want it to be bright and cheery…yellows, pinks, maybe some sky blues.

A big consideration in terms of what flowers we choose is that our house faces the south, so the front yard is constantly under full sun all day long. I’m learning gardening as I go, and I don’t want to pick out any flowers that will wilt under too much sun. I’m good about watering after work if things are starting to look dry, but even with regular watering, some flowers just aren’t meant for too much sun.

What flowers do you have in your garden? Which do you think might work well for mine?

 

~Heart,

Em

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photo credit:  Vincent Ma