7 Outdoor Projects to do This Summer

Wednesday, May 29, 2019

I'm sharing a roundup of outdoor projects to get your home and yard ready for summer fun!
Outdoor DIY projects

11 Favorite Home Decor Finds

Friday, May 24, 2019

I'm sharing where to buy some of my favorite home decor items today! These are viewer favorites that many of you have asked about and most of them are on sale!
modern farmhouse office

Sprucing up the Front Porch and Flower Beds

Wednesday, May 22, 2019

We added cottage curb appeal to our front porch with new shade loving bedding plants and a few inexpensive decorative essentials! 

cottage porch with rockers

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It's that time of year when the nice weather draws us outside and we are motivated to spruce up our yards! Our Texas farmhouse needed a little more curb appeal, and today I'm sharing how we added that with a front porch refresh and new bedding plants.

Let me show you our home. Here's a picture taken in October 2016 just after we moved in. I know you're staring at our gorgeous Golden Rain Tree...but take your eyes off those amazing blooms for a sec and look at our front flower beds. See those hedges? Ew! They were FULL of spider webs and just did nothing for the curb appeal of our beautiful home! I believe they were intended as a privacy hedge, but we never sat on the front porch because who wants to look at spider-infested bushes? NOT ME!

white house black shutters golden raintree

So a few weeks ago, Mr DIY and our son dug them out! I stayed far away during that little project! They also removed the azalea bushes that never bloomed and planted them in the back yard where they'll get more sun. 🌺🌺🌺 Which meant that the beds were basically empty and we were left with a blank slate!

The challenge in our front yard is the shade. We have two huge trees that provide shade almost 100% of the time. And yes, a new mailbox is in the works too πŸ˜‰

Front Yard Before


removing hedges

We have had some beautiful yards in the past, gardens too, but I don't consider us to be gardening gurus...we needed some help! We did some online research, and even spoke extensively with the owner of a local nursery to find out what plants would do best in our yard! We are fairly new to Texas, so we weren't sure what would grow in this spot or if flowering plants would even be possible!

We saved a ton money by purchasing small plants! They will grow and I cannot wait until they fill in! We also added black mulch to the flower beds, which makes such a difference.

Here are the beautiful results.

Front Yard After


new shade loving bedding plants

It looks so much better! I'll share a list of the plants we added below, but I just want you to enjoy the change!

adding curb appeal with flower beds

Once the plants reach maturity, it will provide some privacy for the porch, and I can't wait until we have lots and lots of blooms!

southern cottage front porch

Porch Refresh


After the wet winter that we had, our porch was a mess! Mr DIY took the pressure washer to it, and then we made it look pretty for summer with a few simple additions. For my birthday in April, the kids and Mr DIY bought me hanging ferns and ivy for the openings between our porch posts and my son planted them into hanging baskets with coco liner for me. I love the leafy look!

I shared in my Christmas porch tour how I had found the black rocker and table at the curb one day! Woohoo! But they looked a little lonely on our 30-foot porch, so I started watching Craigslist and FB Marketplace for porch rockers and found this white pair for only $50! Some outdoor cushions from Target add a little more color. 

white rockers and blue striped runner

Last year I painted our side door blue (my favorite color) in just 30 minutes using a paint specifically for exterior doors , and knew I wanted to emphasize that color on the front porch too!

I purchased 2 12-foot outdoor runners to draw your eye away from the concrete! Initially I wanted to paint the porch floor, but no one in the family was in support of that idea...πŸ˜• These are the exact runners I purchased, and I couldn't be happier with them!

front porch decor for summer

The runners are easy to hose off and I love the additional pop of color against our white home!

pink begonias

We added shade loving flowers to our pots, like these gorgeous double begonias and geraniums. If you follow me on Instagram, I shared the makeover for this white chippy plant-chair in the fall. 

front porch with DIY flag banner

And a new flag banner was a simple afternoon DIY project that will hang up all summer!

curb appeal on the front porch

summer hanging baskets and planters

Here are the plants that we used for our front flower beds. They get a little afternoon sun, but are in shade for most of the day. I'm linking to them so that you can see what they look like. I recommend shopping at your local nursery for plants native to your area!

Shade Loving Plants



I hope this post is helpful for you. A home with curb appeal and a welcoming front porch is SO NICE to come home to! I still want to change out our mission-style lights to something with cottage style, and I've always wanted a porch ceiling painted haint blue...so we'll see if I get to those projects this summer or not. The heat and humidity have started climbing into the stratosphere, and early morning/late evening is the only time it's cool enough to sit out on the porch with a glass of iced tea.

This Canadian girl is turning a little Southern, eh? 😍

bringing beauty to the ordinary,


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This blog's content is for entertainment purposes only and is not professional advice. By reading this blog and attempting to recreate any content shared on it, you assume all responsibility for any injuries or damages incurred. Read my full disclaimer here.

5-Minute Spicy Pumpkin Seeds

Monday, May 20, 2019

Spice up a boring salad with these easy to make spicy pumpkin seeds! They have a great crunch and are a healthy addition to your diet, whether you add them to salads or simply snack on them!
healthy salad with spicy pumpkin seeds

Easy Indoor/Outdoor Flag Banner

Wednesday, May 15, 2019

I'm sharing a step by step tutorial for a super cute flag banner made using canvas drop cloth. It's super budget-friendly, you can make it in an afternoon, and it's equally as cute indoors as outdoors!
summer porch

European Farmhouse Master Bedroom Reveal

Wednesday, May 8, 2019

Our bland bedroom has been replaced by a rustic, cozy, elegant room oozing with European farmhouse style! Keep reading because I'm sharing all the details of our finished room today!

master bedroom with European farmhouse style

Window Seat Refresh

I'm sharing how just a few simple changes to the window seat in my office gave it a lighter refresh for summer and disguised some ugly fabric! 
buffalo check window seat

No Sew Velvet Bolster Pillow and DIY Insert

Wednesday, May 1, 2019

Making your own bolster pillow is easier than you might think, and velvet fabric gives it a luxurious, high-quality look and feel! You won't find a bolster anywhere for this low price!

velvet bolster pillow

Affiliate links may be included for your convenience; my full disclosure policy can be found here. If you click through and make a purchase I'll receive a small commission at no extra cost to you!

Good morning beautiful people! I hope you're ready for a good DIY because I am super excited to share this money saving bolster pillow project with you!




But first things first...it's Week 5 of the One Room Challenge...that means that next week is the big reveal of our European farmhouse Master Bedroom refresh! πŸ˜πŸ˜ŠπŸ™Œ If you want to catch up on the other weeks, you can click on the below links.

Week 1 //  Week 2 // Week 3 // Week 4 // Week 5 (you're here) // Week 6


There have been a few challenges and bumps along the way during this makeover, but my oh my, it is finally all coming together!!! I am working on the decor and accessories and next week I'll be sharing the whole gorgeous space with you!

Let's Talk Bolster Pillows

When I was looking for bedding and accessories for our bed, I had my mind made up that a long bolster pillow, wrapped in luxurious velvet, was a MUST-have for our bedroom refresh! I'm decorating with a European farmhouse theme, and to me that means rustic, cozy and elegant!

So I spent a few days searching and finally found a velvet bolster pillow with that loose European elegance I was wanting...you can see it here.  If you scroll sideways, you can see the blue bolster that inspired me. BUT...did you catch the price tag on this beauty? It's over $330!!! For a pillow! That is well out of my budget-friendly-decorating price tag, but it also put a thought into my head that maybe, just maybe I could make my own.

As I was searching for bolster pillow inserts, I was shocked at how expensive even the bolsters are! Even for a little one. And I was wanting something about 3 feet long.

So I did a little more searching, and the internet didn't fail me! I found several articles that showed how to make your own bolster insert using towels and an old, flat pillow!

DIY Bolster Insert for FREE!

I don't think there's a home in America that doesn't have a linen closet with at least one old, flat pillow and some worn towels!

That is all that you need to make your own bolster pillow insert and save yourself a ton of money!

Steps to make a bolster pillow insert

Easy steps for a DIY bolster pillow insert

- First, decide how wide you want your pillow to be, fold a beach towel or two to that size and roll up tightly. Secure beach towels with several rubber bands. Note: in the first picture above, you can see that I have 2 towels. I ended up having to remove one because it was too wide to wrap my pillow around it.

- The flat king size pillow I found in the depths of my linen closet wasn't smelling so fresh, so I ran it through my washer and dryer before continuing with my DIY bolster pillow insert. Note: a fluffy pillow will not work for this project; you want a flat, worn out pillow...you know, the kind you hang onto just in case!

- Once the pillow was freshly washed and dried, I literally sandwiched the towel between the pillow and secured it again with several rubber bands. 

- The directions I found online ended here. However, I wanted to be sure my pillow wasn't going to come apart...rubber bands are notorious for drying out and snapping. So I took a large needle and thick quilting thread and hand-stitched the pillow closed. This is totally optional, but I highly recommend it!

Once I finished making my bolster pillow insert, I had my doubts as to whether it was going to work to give me that luxurious velvet pillow I had in my mind. There were quite a few lumps and bumps, it was not smooth and it just looked kind of wonky! I actually stuck it in the corner of the room and went back to searching for inserts online.

In the meantime, I purchased a yard of Ballard Designs blue velvet that I found on Etsy. It was only $13.99 plus shipping brought me to $25 total for this DIY bolster pillow.

When the fabric came, the color was perfect! The velvet isn't as soft as I was hoping, it's more of an upholstery fabric, but it has a nice drape and I was fairly confident it would all work out. Am I glad I saved my DIY bolster insert!

How to Wrap a Bolster Pillow in Velvet

Here is my no-sew method for covering the bolster pillow.

First, I laid the fabric out on my bed, and centered the insert. I had enough overlap on each side that I folded each side over and then wrapped the pillow up tightly like a sausage.

lay insert on fabric

In the end, I didn't care for the folded ends so I unwrapped it, unfolded the edges and wrapped it back up. In the image below, the edges are still folded in.

tightly roll up pillow

Next, I secured the ends with a couple of rubber bands. Think French bonbon 🍬...this is a European-inspired room makeover after all πŸ˜‰

secure ends with rubber bands

Here is what the pillow looked like at this point.

DIY 36" bolster pillow

I went back with scissors and very lightly trimmed the edges that were overlapping (I probably should have done this before wrapping the pillow!!). I also very very carefully used a lighter to melt the edges of the cut fabric like I did for these satin flowers. You want to keep the flame moving quickly so you don't burn the fabric; you're just wanting to melt the fibers so they won't fray!

To cover the rubber bands, I tied some white ribbon around the ends.

wrap rubber bands with ribbon

I was pleasantly surprised to find that the lumps in the pillow are no longer noticeable! I had enough velvet fabric to wrap around the pillow several times and it completely disguises that the insert is not perfect!!

luxurious DIY velvet bolster pillow

I told Mr DIY that I saved him $300 by making my own velvet bolster pillow and insert...he was quite happy about that! πŸ˜πŸ˜ƒ

This easy bolster pillow turned out SO much better than I expected! It looks just perfect with the other decorative elements in our master bedroom refresh. I'm sharing just a peek here, but next week you'll get to see the whole room transformation and all the little details!

European elegance velvet blue bolster and ruffled chenille throw

European elegance DIY bolster pillow
This DIY pillow project gave me the luxurious velvet bolster pillow of my dreams, and for a price that is almost unbelievable! I would love to know what you think of this project, and if it's something you think you'll try!

Be sure to check out the other guest participants and their One Room Challenge projects (HERE). You don't want to miss the 20 featured bloggers (HERE).

I'll meet you back here next Thursday for the reveal! Next week is also Thrifty Style Team and I'm sharing some budget-friendly updates to my office!

bringing beauty to the ordinary,


Become a DIY insider!
You'll never miss a post, and you'll get all my FREE tutorials
and more...delivered straight to your inbox!

Let's be Social! Follow along on PinterestFBG+TwitterInstagram

Popular Posts You Might Have Missed

         

         

This blog's content is for entertainment purposes only and is not professional advice. By reading this blog and attempting to recreate any content shared on it, you assume all responsibility for any injuries or damages incurred. Read my full disclaimer here.