Lifestyle Meets Comfort: Gallery Wall How- To

I’m excited to share that I’ve contributed a guest blog post over on the La- Z Boy Comfort Meets Lifestyle website! If you’re looking for some design inspo, it’s a great resource to check out with articles on a variety of topics including trends, tips, and DIYs. 
My post is a simple how- to for creating a gallery wall, with some tips and tricks to help make the process a little simpler (I always find it takes me way longer to hang photos, etc than I think it will). A gallery wall is a stylish way to display photos, art, and other pieces while adding a personal touch to your home. See below for a little sneak peak and head over the Lifestyle Meets Comfort website for the full post!

Visit the Lifestyle Meets Comfort website for this and other decorating and organizing ideas.

Teepee Fun with Woodland Wovens

Spring is here and that means Summer isn’t too far away (yay!!!!). And whether you’re still stuck inside waiting for the rain and snow to disappear, or starting to get outside more, it’s fun seeing what our kid’s imaginations think up. Play is an amazing thing and what better way to inspire their imaginations than a fort, or in this case a teepee?

Meghan from Woodland Wovens and I got our four kiddos together this week (4 kids under 3 and we survived and managed to pull off this shoot- yahoo!) for some fresh air and playtime with one of her teepees and it was so cute seeing how much fun the kids had with it. Set them up inside or out, these teepees are a fun addition for the home without screaming ‘I’m here for the kids’- they’re as beautiful on the eye as they are fun for the kids, so they’re win- win for the whole family.

These teepees are the perfect place for kids to play and use their imaginations, and large enough for the whole family to pile in for cuddles and story time (how cute would it be to set up an indoor camping- inspired movie night? Or set up at the beach for a Summer bonfire?). I love that they’re large enough for older kids to enjoy as well, so these are great for families who’ve outgrown the baby and toddler years. Meghan constructs them herself from sustainable materials and she’s got a few designs to choose from based on your style and decor, plus some fun accessories for the perfect finishing touch. We had fun incorporating some boho- inspired pieces into our setup and as beautiful as it looked outside, it was great setting up the teepee inside to see how it works in a playroom setting. Scroll to the end of the post for details on where the accessories are from.

As beautiful as the teepee was setup outside, I wanted to share how it looks when setup inside- a great addition to a playroom or even a kid’s room! (And how perfect would it be to store toys and stuffies at the end of the day- just close the flaps for a clutter- free room!).

Shown:
Teepee & decorative accessories- Woodland Wovens
Dreamcatchers: VMD Jewellery
Roundie towel- Plaj Towels
Feather print canvas buckets- From the Seeds
Mustard swaddle blanket- Narra Nest
White chunky knit blanket- Leo & Bea
Kid’s outfits:
Liam’s Leggings- Vonbon
Ari: Tee- West + Wind Leggings- Kewe Clothing
Emmy & Rowan’s Rompers- Jax & Lennon Co

To see all teepee designs and learn more, visit the Woodland Wovens website. You can also find them social media: Instagram | Facebook 

April posts sponsored by

Pretty Spring Table DIY

Are you hosting Easter Dinner this year? Entertaining can be a lot of fun, but it can get expensive and be a lot of work- especially when it comes to the dishes and clean up! Today I’m sharing some fun and simple ways to set a Spring table including this pretty DIY table runner made from ribbon and fresh flowers/ greens. Added bonus: I used paper plates and napkins and wooden cutlery for an easy clean up instead of linen, china and silverware: just pop them into recycling and the compost when you clear the table and you’re done! Scroll to the end of the post for all the details. Despite silverware being a pain to wash and polish, the likes of Nella cutlery can make those Insta photos of your wedding look very special!

 

I love finding inexpensive ways to decorate and finding ways to use items I already have, and setting the table for special occasions is the perfect chance to do this. When it comes to entertaining, I love spending the time with loved ones, I just don’t enjoy the time it takes to clean up after having guests. So I opted to set this table with as many recyclable/ compostable items as possible, as well as ones that can be used again- such as the mason jars and pretty candle holders– to cut down on clean up. I used these beautiful paper plates as the jumping- off point (can you believe they’re paper?!) and went from there. The silver chargers I already had, and I simply folded up some paper napkins to lay the cutlery on. When guests are finished, the plates can go into recycling and the cutlery and napkins can be composted. All I’ll need to do is pop the mason jars in the dishwasher and wipe down the chargers with a cloth. And then there’s that table runner… 
I love making pretty centrepieces, but I don’t like trying to see over them to talk to people across the table, so this low- lying beauty is perfect. All you need are some pretty fresh flowers and greens, and any other materials you would like to use. I laid down craft paper to serve as placemats (another easy thing to clean up!), then layered satin ribbon on top running the length of the table. I used ivy as the base then added some dusty miller and roses- use whatever you’ve got in the garden or pick up some fresh cuts at the grocery store. This doesn’t have to be expensive to make a statement. If you’d like the roses to last longer, pop them in floral tubes with water. For a fun finishing touch for Easter, give each guest an egg and paint pen (or use a regular/ permanent marker) so they can decorate an egg while they wait for dinner to be served- this is a great way to keep the kids entertained and it’s fun for the adults too. I hope this post gives you some ideas for your own Easter table! See the checklist below for what I used.
Table checklist:

Place settings:
– paper plates- Heather and Gem
– wooden cutlery- Grace Miller & Co
– kraft paper (used as placemats, I used a roll I bought from IKEA)
– chargers 
– napkins
– mason jars
– paper straws
Table decoration:
– wooden candleholders- From the Seeds 
– table runner:
— satin ribbon (I just laid it down on the table, but you can use double- sided tape if you’d like it secured in place)
— fresh greens- seeded eucalyptus, nagi podocarpus (used in a lot of flower bouquets), ivy, and dusty miller are a few ideas
— fresh flowers- pick flowers that suit your style and colours that suit the rest of the table

Thanks to 
Heather and Gem,  From the Seeds, and Grace Miller & Co for helping me pull this all together!

March posts sponsored by

My Side of the Bed: His & Her Bedroom Decor

Let’s be honest, when you’re married with kids keeping the romance alive can get pushed down the list (hands up, who looks at their bed and yearns for more zzzzzs?). Our bed is usually a pile of blankets, pillows, books, and kid’s toys. A cozy, comfy nest it may be, but a sanctuary it is not. And I’ll confess: I love how a made- up bed looks, but rarely make ours. It’s just one of those things that has inevitably become less of a priority. 
But we can all dream of a perfectly tidy and styled bedroom can’t we?  Calming, cozy, and serene are three words I like to think about when it comes to this particular room of the house. And I think this room might have that covered. Thanks to Old Barn Rescue, I had the chance to style a bedroom around their ‘Mr & Mrs’ pillow shams which totally had me thinking back to my wedding registry and all of the fun I had picking out things for our home. I love having accents in a room that compliment the overall style while showing the individual personalities of the occupants. For example, using the same lamps but different night stands for a more masculine/ feminine touch. I hope you like these photos as much as I liked having an excuse to decorate this room! See below for all the details.
About Old Barn Rescue
The story behind the company goes like this: In 2003 a barn on one of the co- founders’  family farm had to be torn down, (the inspiration for the name), and  rather than letting the 120- year- old wood go to the landfill, the co- founders gathered it up and started creating unique pieces using reclaimed materials. They now source materials from a variety of sources to create upcycled vintage- inspired signs and decor. The company also offers vinyl wall decals and recently added clothing and fabric decor items to their stock. In Spring of this year the brand added their Threads line and now offers everything from onesies, t- shirts, pillow shams, and more featuring their heat- pressed vinyl designs. All of the products are lovingly handmade using vintage and new materials. 

Bedroom Styling Tips:
Make it cozy– Blankets and pillows are an inexpensive way to add colour and texture, plus are super cozy to snuggle into. This is the room you sleep in after all, and you want it to be somewhere you love to curl up. 
Easy update- If you don’t want to invest in an entire new set of bedding, sheets,  etc, buy some new pillow shams as a simple way to freshen the look of your bed. They are an easy item to replace and there are lots of options out there to suit your style. The same goes for your nightstands: swap them out and pair with some new lamps for a quick and simple update.
Colour vs texture-  A classic styling tip: If you love lots of colour, keep the shapes and textures in the room simple, so it doesn’t become visually overwhelming. The opposite is true if you like a simple/ monochromatic palette: add in textures and shapes to create visual interest (think faux- fur, fabric textures, and accent materials such as glass and wood for starters).
Show your personality- It’s your bedroom, so enjoy having some fun! Add in details that show you and your hubby’s tastes. To avoid it becoming too busy/ cluttered, pick accents that compliment each other, even if they are on opposite sides of the bed (see tip #3 above). Storage containers such as crates and boxes can also help store items to avoid mess and clutter.
SOURCES
Mr & Mrs Pillow Shams- Old Barn Rescue
Items provided by & available to buy at The Handpicked Home:
Arrow Toss Cushion- Raggy Girl Vintage
Throw Blanket- Forest & Waves
‘Choose Happiness’ Wood Sign- AllyBeth Design Co
Dreamcatcher and Candle- The New Mercantile 
White Antlers- Townsend Rowe
Mountain Clock- Florid & Fallow 
Wooden Crate- One Wooden Wall
Rugged Gentleman Spray- Happy Spritz
White/ Gold & Gold Wooden bowls
Jewellery Box
Initial Mugs- Chapters Indigo
Lucite Tray- Homesense 

Visit the Old Barn Rescue website to learn more and to view their complete product line.

A big thank you to Old Barn Rescue for these pillow shams and inspiring this post, and to The Handpicked Home shop for providing items to style this room. 


October posts sponsored by

DIY Chemical Free Dishwasher Detergent

For those of you who know me & follow the blog, you know that cleansing our home of chemicals has been an ongoing focus of mine for some time now. When it comes to the house & cleaning products I’ve been looking into and trying out different chemical- free options, including all- purpose cleaners, soaps/ detergents (see my homemade laundry detergent- which I lovehere), and have now found a formula for DIY dishwasher detergent that’s free from bleach & harsh detergents/ chemicals that works. It gets the dishes clean, the glasses crystal- clear & free from filmy residue, and the dishwasher smells fresh after each use. 
Before you think I’ve completely turned into a modern- day hippie, I want you to do this one thing: go fetch your dishwashing detergent/ tabs/ whatever you use & look at what’s in it. Those ingredients leave a residue on the plates you eat off of, the glasses you drink from, the cutlery you use, & all of your cooking/ baking/ storage containers. Yum. And I get it: you’re busy, you’ve used the same brand for forever, and you don’t want to switch now. So if you can’t quite bring yourself to try this little recipe/ experiment out, I hope you’ll at least try some of the natural brands available to compare the difference. 
But if you’re curious about a chemical- free home, this is a simple place to start. Plus any ingredients below that you don’t already have serve a multitude of purposes in various applications throughout your home. You might spend a couple bucks up front but the ingredients will go a long way. I got the recipe from The Makeshift Nest & she has great step- by- step photos if you’d like to see what everything looks like. The only difference I found was that my batch didn’t make as many as hers for some reason, but no biggie.  
So, let’s get to some making!
You will need:
1 cup borax* 
1 cup washing soda*
1 cup vinegar 
2 tablespoons lemon juice 
1 or 2 ice cube trays
Tip: I recommend looking at the detergent compartment in your dishwasher before you start, so you know how big it is & it’s a funky shape. This will affect how you pour & dry your detergent tabs.
*You can buy these ingredients in most grocery stores & find them online on sites like well.ca
To make:
1. Combine the dry ingredients in a large Pyrex jug & make sure to get out any lumps- a fork works well here to mash out the lumps
2. In a separate bowl combine the vinegar & lemon juice
3. Stirring constantly, pour the liquid mix into the dry mix, again trying to work out any lumps that may form
4. Pour your mixture into the ice cube trays & allow to sit for an hour
5. When dry/ solid to a light touch, pop out the tabs onto a piece of wax paper. Depending on the size your dishwasher’s detergent compartment, you may need to use a knife to gently slice them in half so they fit. Allow to dry for another half hour or so
6. Store in a glass container & use 1- 2 (full- sized tabs) per load, based on how dirty your dishes are
Makes around 12- 14 full- sized tabs using standard ice cube trays
September posts sponsored by

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