Posts in : Home Decor
Last year, I began transforming the cubby under the stairs into Pixie Hollow. I spent hours in there painting landscapes and attaching artificial flowers and vines to create a magical place for Zoë and Eden to play. They loved it, but I really should have known better than to attach large sunflowers and strawberries to the wall. It took no time at all for Miss Eden (2 at the time) to happily pluck them off.
Before Christmas I decided to commission a professional artist to give Pixie Hollow a facelift. It wasn’t terrible by any means, but I am no painter. Yes, the trees did resemble trees, but they lacked depth and fine detail. When the first muralist I contacted cancelled on me, I did a Google search and found Ann Gates Fiser. I could not have found a more perfect fit for this project. When I spoke with Ann about Pixie Hollow, she asked if I had been to her Moontoe Gallery website, I hadn’t. Not only did Ann paint gorgeous wall murals, she specialized in fantasy art and fairies. It was meant to be. She transformed Pixie Hollow into a little girls dream come true (and mine, who am I kidding).
I planned for Ann to paint for 6 hours, to add detail and depth to the fairy tree, the waterfall, and tree around the doorway, but I soon found out that wall murals are addictive. I wanted more. I had Ann come back not one, but two more times. (And if truth be told, I am 99% sure I will ask her back again after the next fairy movie comes out.) Each fairy and her talent, with the exception of Vidia, is represented in Pixie Hollow. There are the garden fairy fields, the sunflower meadows, the lilypad pond, Tinkers’ Nook, and of course, the Pixie Dust tree.
After Ann finished the murals, I painted on a coat of clear matte paint to protect them. I let the paint cure for three days, then added these Disney Fairy wall decals. The end result is completely magical. Pixie Hollow has been a huge hit with not just Zoë and Eden, but their friends as well.
If you live in the Seattle area and would like a wall mural for your home, I would not hesitate to recommend Ann Gates Fiser. Not only is she an amazingly talented artist, she is such a joy to work with. The girls and I had a wonderful time getting to know her while she was painting Pixie Hollow, and we couldn’t be more pleased with the results.
The very first fight that Kelly and I had when we moved in together was about hanging pictures around the house. You see, Kelly’s grandmother was a bit, shall we say, enthusiastic, about family photos. As in, literally every square inch of wall space in her home was filled with almost life sized family portraits.
Understandably, the moment my hammer struck the photo hook, Kelly started to freak. I talked him down off the ledge and we compromised on minimal family photos placed tastefully around the house.
Then we had children. I won’t lie. I had to reign in the crazy. I mean come on, who wouldn’t want to see photos of our little angels on every wall and flat surface of our home. Right?!
Shockingly, we have very few photos displayed in our house. Instead, they are on kept within easy reach in my scrapbooks and at any given time I can almost guarantee there is a digital slideshow running somewhere within eye shot. What can I say? We are a technology loving family. More on that another day.
All of that being said, sometimes bigger is better.
Sometimes an 8×10 is just not going to cut it.
Sometimes to truly make a statement (or to keep in scale with your fireplace) you need to go bigger. Our master bathroom is one such example.
Last summer Kelly and I celebrated our 10th anniversary with a Hawaiian vacation. My sweet husband’s gift to me was to bring my favorite photographer along to document our vacation. Angela took a gorgeous series of photos on the beach before we renewed our wedding vows which I simply adore. I chose three to hang above our bathtub. Every time I look at them I am reminded of the warm white sand beach and the very special love that Kelly and I share. It is the perfect way to start the day, and the perfect way to wind down after a hectic day.
I won’t lie, I was a little bit nervous ordering that ginormous canvas. It is bigger than my two year old! But like I said, sometimes bigger is better. Even an 11×14 print would have looked freakishly small on that wall space.
Go forth and enlarge!
We hosted Easter Brunch at our house this year. It was loud and wonderful. My mom is one of eight children, and I am the oldest of fifteen grandchildren. You can imagine the size of our family gatherings when I was a child. Hosting even a portion of my family is quite the undertaking, but I love it. As much as I cherish our quiet time at home with just the four of us, holidays don't seem complete unless I am surrounded by lots of family.
I had so much fun preparing for Easter Brunch. I think I caught the party planning bug preparing the Dr. Seuss Baby Shower. I have subscribed to all sorts of event and party planning blogs over the last few months. My favorites are included in the "Link Love" page on my blog. (There is a link below my picture.)
Our favorite new Easter activity has to be "Peep Jousting." What is it? You take two peeps (the bird peeps work best, I didn't know that) place them in the microwave facing each other, stick 1/2 a bamboo skewer in each of them, turn on the microwave and watch them go! The peeps start to puff up and whichever peep stabs and deflates the other first, wins. It is so fun!
We have pictures of all the girls' aunts, uncles, cousins, grandparents and great-grandparents (and us, of course.) One of Eden's favorite things to do is point to family members and have me tell her their names. She can already say, "Nana, Tay-Tay (Tera), Sy-Sy (Sylas), Nano, Papa, Me (Grammie) and Ry-Ry (Ryan). She also says family ("Famee!") when she points to the tree. <3 <3 <3
The trunk of the tree is also the girls' growth chart. This is actually a version 2.0 tree. I painted a tree for Zoë years ago in our townhouse. Before we moved I made sure to copy down all the measurements and dates so that I could transfer them to this new tree. Just the other day I made a new mark for Eden after her 18-month check up. It is astonishing how much she has grown in six months!
This is a simple, fun and inexpensive project that you can do in your home. I painted the tree using acrylic paint found at any craft store. To add a little bit of sparkle I painted on a bit of glitter glue on the wings of the butterflies once the paint was dry.
To create the circles, I opened each person's photo in Photoshop, used a clipping mask to clip it to this template, then (making sure to hold down shift) re-sized the photo (Edit > Transform > Scale). I then saved the cropped photo as a .PNG file. After I had created all of my circles I opened a new 5×7 Photoshop document, drug all the circles on to the document, and saved it as a .JPG. Then I had them printed at Costco.
Next up, assembly. I used a circle punch to punch out all of my photos. You could cut them all out by hand, but this was much faster. I then glued them to metal rim tags. Finally, I placed them on the tree. Voila!
Updated to Add:
Our family tree was featured on the Design Dazzle blog! Thank you, Toni!
I think it’s safe to say that I’ve developed something of a pumpkin obsession. Or to be more specific, a pumpkin decorating obsession. I blame my friend, Heather. She goes all out for Halloween at her house. I have drooled over the decorations she’s posted on her blog for years, and apparently it has rubbed off on me. I had so much fun painting, decoupaging and glamming up my pumpkins. We don’t do spooky Halloween decorations at our house, instead I call this Halloween Chic. You should see all the other jeweled and sparkly things we’ve got going on. Halloween is quickly becoming one of my very favorite holidays. Who knew?! I took this picture of my pumpkins the other day and I just had to scrap it. Didn't they turn out cute? It is so much more fun than carving pumpkins and they last forever!
Click HERE for credits
In other scrapping news, my Frozen Pancakes layout was chosen as a Gallery Standout today. I've never been chosen before so I was pretty darn excited. I have had that photo sitting on my desktop for at least six months so that I would scrap it. (I kid you not). It is such a nice feeling to have it d.o.n.e. Now to finish up the 10+ layouts that have been sitting on my desktop for who knows how long… Does anybody else do that?
Only two more days until Halloween, can you believe it?! Don't forget, you still have one more day to BOO your neighbors. Zoë and I went out last night and BOO'd three families without getting caught. WHOO HOO! Last year our neighbors came outside just as we were sneaking up to their front porch and busted us. What are the odds?