Decorating for the Artistic Soul

Archive for March 2008

Hand Painted Mailbox - Mother’s Day Giveaway
Our Mother’s Day Free Gift Giveaway is a great way to remember Mom this year. Mother’s Day is coming up in May and it’s not too early to start planning something special. We wanted to help you get started and what better way for you to say “Happy Mother’s Day” to your special mom this year than with this great Mother’s Day gift giveaway opportunity.

Unique Decor Online is giving away a gorgeous hand painted mailbox of your (or your mom’s) choice. Imagine your mom’s face when you tell her that she can pick out a custom mailbox and have it personalized and shipped free! Mother’s Day is the perfect time to show your mom how wonderful she is, and you have nothing to lose, so take a chance! There is no purchase necessary to take advantage of this great free gift giveaway so we encourage you to head on over and sign up now. The drawing ends at the end of April so get your entry in early! Complete details available following the link above. Click on the link to enter our Mother’s Day Giveaway, today!

Everyone looks forward to spring in their own way. For some people it means getting outside and enjoying the warm weather. For others, it is the time of the year when they can enjoy some of their favorite sports and hobbies. For many teenagers however, it is time to start shopping for spring clothing to fill their wardrobe.

Of course, you can’t go shopping without some idea of what to search for. Your teen is looking for style and all the latest trends and you are searching for clothing that is durable and that brings out the best most supplicated look for your teen. Fortunately, this spring season is full of many great options.

Below are a few spring clothing trends for teenagers:

• Bright colors – Bright colors have always been associated with spring fashions and this year is no exception. You will find many brightly colored accessories as well as clothing.

• Eco Friendly Clothing – Clothing that is environmentally friendly is a big hit this year. This type of clothing includes items that are made from denims and organic cottons among other environmental friendly material. This type of clothing is now both fun and exciting which puts them at the top of the spring clothing trends for teens this season.

• Basic Black and White – The basic colors of black and white are a big hit when it comes to style this spring. Expect to see a lot of these basic colors when you go shopping this year.

• Music Hits – You will find that many of the outfits for this season revolves around the music world.

When you go shopping with your teen this spring keep these new trends in mind. You will be able to find many fashionable designs that will suit both their taste and yours. Now you can actually go out and have a great time searching for that perfect spring wardrobe with your teen thanks to all the wonderful designs available this year.

When spring arrives and the temperatures warm up its time to get outside and enjoy the great weather with your family. There are many exciting things that you can do as a family that provides excitement, fun, exercise and quality time together.

Below are 10 great springtime activities you can enjoy with your family.

1. Visit the zoo
2. Go bicycle riding
3. Play softball, tennis, basketball, volleyball and other similar games
4. Take long walks or nature hikes
5. Make crafts such as bird houses or wind chimes
6. Plant and care for a flower garden
7. Go fishing or boating
8. Fly kites
9. Visit the park
10. Make a bug collection

These are just a few of the many different activities that you can participate in during the warm months. Anything that you can do to get out of the house and enjoy fresh air and sunshine will make you feel better and give you more energy. Even if you just go out for a short daily walk it can brighten up your day.

You are spending precious time with your family creating memories that will last a lifetime when you engage in springtime activities together. You have to admit, there is nothing better than that. You will also be getting some of the exercise that your body needs to stay healthy while doing something you enjoy.

As the warm weather is drawing near it is time to start planning out your family activities. This way you will be ready to get started as soon as the weather breaks so you can take full advantage of this exciting time of year.

Another great craft idea if you’re looking for a great handmade gift, an activity for children or a hobby to keep you busy during the summer is to scrapbook a special event. Scrapbooks are great fun to make and even more fun to look back on later and reminisce all the memories. You can do a scrapbook of most any event such as:

• Birthdays
• Christmas
• Thanksgiving
• Summer vacation
• Easter
• New Years
• Pregnancy
• Birth of a baby
• Anniversary
• Wedding
• And more

If there is a holiday or special event happening, then you can do a scrapbook of it. It’s also possible to go back to past events where photos were taken and create a scrapbook from this. You can also make scrapbooks from many materials that you already have lying around your home so it’s easy and inexpensive to do.

First you will want something to be used as the book. You can use a photo album, a purchased scrapbook to fill or you can create your own. You can even use posterboard or construction paper cut to the right size and with holes punched in to tie it together to create your own scrapbook.

Next you need photos of your event to use in your scrapbook. You can cut them, crop them or change and edit them however you choose to make them right for your scrapbook theme and idea. It is a good idea to arrange your photos in the order and position you want them in before you start permanently attaching them to your scrapbook.

Now it is time to collect your other scrapbook extras. You can use pieces of construction paper, craft paper, stickers, stencils, stamps and anything else you desire to decorate your scrapbook. You may want to write in dates, captions or other details on your photos. It’s up to you what you want to do- this is the freedom of the scrapbook.

Add details, decorations and more however you desire. You may get wild and creative or you may choose to stick with a common theme. For example, if your photos are of a family 4th of July event, you may keep your colors and decorations red, white and blue. You can also include some great quotes about Independence Day and other fun, related details.

You can be as creative as you choose with your scrapbook, using any combination of materials, paper types and more. The point of the scrapbook is that it is handmade and creative and that it will create memories that are preserved for many years to come. You can make it a family event to create the scrapbook and everyone can have a piece of the creativity. You can also choose to give it to someone for a special gift or as a holiday gift.

During the spring most couples enjoy spending time together relaxing in the backyard. It’s quiet, pleasant and can even be romantic. Outdoor decorating can turn a dull boring back yard into an oasis for two. The following outdoor decorating ideas can help you create an atmosphere that is both relaxing and romantic.

• Use bright colorful pillows and cushions for your lounge furniture and benches to create that springtime look. The more colorful the better.
• Having a flower garden or scattering different plants and flowers throughout the yard will enhance the color and create that exotic look.
• Add items to your yard that you love. For example, you can put in a couple water fountains, put out birdhouses, hang wind chimes or place statues that appeal to you throughout your back yard.
• Add outdoor lighting with rustic lanterns, lawn torches, citronella candles and so forth.
• Use a canopy to shelter your picnic area and enhance the overall look of your yard.
• Hammocks are very comfortable and colorful tables add a nice touch and convenience to your backyard oasis.
• If you have the room a gazebo is an excellent addition to any yard that is cozy and romantic.

Outdoor decorating does not have to be hard or expensive. The main thing is that you use items that you really like and that are comfortable for you. Create an environment that you can enjoy and feel the most relaxed in, then get out there and enjoy the cool breeze, bright sunshine and all the other great things that nature at its finest has to offer.

rose-from-mom.jpgFlower gardens are one of the most beautiful sights you will ever see and spring is the time of year to get started taking care of yours. If you already have a flower garden you would like to brighten up and restore, now is the time to add new plants to enhance the existing ones.

Before you can plant a flower garden and provide the maintenance it will need to thrive, you will need to pull all of your tools out of storage and get them ready to use. The basic gardening tools can be used on your flower garden and as it begins to flourish and grow, you may need to add a few extra items. Make sure that you have a good pair of gloves to start off with to help protect your hands.

There are certain steps that you will need to do throughout the season to keep your garden looking beautiful such as pruning. This should be done in the early part of spring to allow for new growth. Weeding is necessary so your plants will have more room to grow and blossom. This should be done anytime you see those nasty weeds invading your flower garden.

Spring is the best time to mulch around the borders of your flower garden and to add fertilize. Many gardeners will add extra mulch to their gardens in the winter months to help protect the plants from the cold. If you have done this, then now would be time to eliminate the excess mulch so the plants will have room to grow.

During the spring you usually see a lot of high winds that can damage your plants. To avoid damage to your plants go ahead stake them now so you won’t be caught off guard. Keep a close eye on your plants so if any problems arise you will have the opportunity to take care of them before they do serious harm to your flower garden. Using the tips can help your garden to flourish and grow beautifully throughout the season.

Last week we mentioned some fun arts and crafts ideas and we had some requests to tell you how to make those items. So here we’re going to start with one: the Toilet Paper Cozy.

This is great for anyone who has cats, small children or other animals that may get into the toilet paper when it’s on the roll and drag it around the house. It’s also great for keeping a neater, cleaner look in the bathroom and can even discourage people from using too much toilet paper when it’s really not needed (so your rolls last longer!)

There are several different ways of making toilet paper cozies. Some people knit or crochet covers for their extra rolls and it adds a nice touch to the bathroom décor. Our favorite idea, however, is simple and involves just some minor sewing stitches.

To begin, cut:

1- 16″ x 8.5″ of outside fabric
1- 7″ x 5.5″ of outside fabric
1- 7″ x 5.5″ of lining fabric
1- 16″ x 8.5″ of lining fabric

*Be sure to iron all fabrics before you begin working with them for a better completed look.*

1. Next, take the outer fabric and fold the larger piece along the longer side. Do this wrong-side-out and then stitch the sides as if you were making a bag or tote.
2. Now open up the bottom corners and sew these (also like making a tote).
3. Now you need to do the same thing with your lining bag, placing the outer fabric and the larger piece and sewing them together.
4. The next step is to fold them over and press the top raw edges of the two bags together. Now you can use a roll of toilet paper to measure your depth. (If you sometimes buy a thicker brand, you may want to make your cozy a little larger just in case).
5. Now with a machine or by hand, baste the liner bag to the outside bag.
6. Now invert your outside bag around your lining. You will have the cozy part complete now but don’t top-stitch the bags together.
7. Next you need to sew a loop so that your cozy can attach to your toilet paper roll holder.
8. Align the wrong sides together of the smaller pieces and stitch along the longer sides of the rectangle. This will form a tube.
9. Turn inside out and press together.
10. Now you need to tuck your raw edges between the lining and the outside bags for a clean look.
11. Pin your loop into place for now and pin the bag together at the edges so nothing slips out of position.
12. Now just top stitch along all the edges and outside of the bags and you will have a completed cozy!

You can now slide your toilet paper cozy onto any normal toilet paper roll holder and slip your favorite toilet paper roll right inside. These also make great handcrafted gifts to give to people on your list for any occasion. You can choose the color and type of materials yourself although we found it works better of the outer material is a bit heavier than the liner material.

Have fun!

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March 2008
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