DIY: Stenciled Wall


This very well could be my biggest DIY to date. That, my friends, is not wallpaper. It is several hours worth of work using a paint pen and a piece of cardboard. It's not for everyone, but this project only cost me $15!
My Unrequited Wallpaper Love
After realizing the cost, I regretfully kissed my dreams of a gorgeous embossed wallpaper goodbye and set out to try stenciling my dining room. (My husband almost passed out when I told him how much papering just one wall would be. I could see this was a problem...) In hindsight, there are so many reasons why I'm glad I went with a stencil over wallpaper. Just to name a few...
       1. The total cost was a mere 5% the price of the wallpaper I had picked out. Seriously. 
       2. If I tire of the pattern (which is inevitable at some point), I can simply paint over it.
      3. I discovered that trying something that once intimidated the life out of me could pay off.

My Inspiration
Like many blogoholics, I too have been enamored by the amazing stenciled wall projects out there. Here are just a few of my favorites that nudged me over the edge to try it myself.  

Console Tables


One of the only places in my home that I am totally content with is my entryway console table. For some reason the stars aligned, and I wouldn't change a thing to the set up or accessories. This doesn't happen often, as I almost always change my mind about a space or have a plan for improvement. (If my husband were reading this, there would be an audible , "Amen".) The first set of images is my home. Followed by that are foyers and console tables that I'm pretty fond of.

I'm a sucker for symmetry. I started with two lamps I loved and two of the centerpieces from our wedding. From there I just picked small items in my house that I wanted to showcase.

The mirrored table was purchased from Pier 1. The "pinwheel frame" was a Christmas project that became a permanent fixture post holidays. I had trouble finding something I liked better for the space.
Most of the images below, I feel, tend toward fashion rather than function. In truth, mine does too. Our back entry is where all the keys are thrown, bags dropped, and mail collects. I'm still on the hunt for pictures of tables that are equally functionally and still fashion forward.

Summer Tortellini Salad


I call this a "salad".  Really, does anything with a pasta base count as a salad? Not hardly. Regardless, this is a quick and refreshing dish for a summer brunch or side for dinner. Add a little olive oil, and it stores fine overnight.

-cheese or spinach filled tortellini
-fresh basil
-grape tomatoes (Cherry tomatoes work well too.)
-artichoke hearts
-black olives
-fresh mozzarella
-Italian dressing
-S & P

1. Make tortellini according to package directions. Rinse and toss with olive or grapeseed oil. Allow to  cool in fridge for 10-20 minutes. (This ensures that the hot pasta will not melt the mozzerella when combining.)
2. Chop a large bunch of fresh basil.
3. Strain and chop one 14 oz. can of artichoke hearts.
4. Drain one or two cans of sliced black olives.
5. Cut fresh mozzarella balls into slices and then chop into cubes. (You can also use mozzarella string cheese if fresh mozzarella is not available.)
5. Combine tortellini pasta, one carton of cherry or grape tomatoes, chopped basil, artichoke hearts, cheese, and 2/3 cup of Italian dressing.
6. Salt and pepper to taste.
7. Serve cold and enjoy!

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Little Mister: A Bow Tie Baby Shower


Whenever I'm throwing a shower, I have a tendency to "throw" myself into it  Much to my husband's dismay, I morph from the girl he married into crazed party planner, ignoring the budget and rearranging the furniture with or without help. I lose sleep, forget to eat, and make more trips to Hobby Lobby than any sane person should in a week's time. Sadly, I love this process. I love it more when I'm throwing it for someone who can only be described as my "kindred". 

My best friend Tanya is expecting her first and couldn't more excited. When we sat down to plan the shower, immediately we had flashbacks of wedding planning. (We were both each other's maid of honor and decided to get married within a month of each other...What were we thinking?") We even planned the date around when our dear friend Laura (Lark Photography) wasn't traveling the globe and could shoot the shower. Tanya has impeccable taste, and I knew this shower had to stand out. We based our theme around this adorable invite we found on Etsy.

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