I’ve officially been living in the Charlotte area for about three weeks. Already I feel so at home, and I am so happy that our little family of four has relocated to this area. There is so much to do, and the weather is fantastic.
That being said, I’d be lying if I didn’t say I get a little homesick from time to time. Although the Carolina’s have stolen my heart, a small piece of it is still back in New York.
Our small hometown (I say small compared to Charlotte) is a wonderful place that my husband and I will always love and admire. One of our favorite things about where we were born and raised is the beautiful lake that is right in the backyard of our hometown. We grew up on that lake, and it will forever be a part of us.
Recently we received the most beautiful map of our hometown and surrounding lake from Mapiful. Mapiful is a company that makes custom maps from anywhere around the world, and this map is by far my favorite piece of decor in our new home.
It was so easy to create the map on their website. All I had to do was plug in my zip code and I could move the map to center it how I chose. When I typed in my zip code a map of our hometown popped right up. Although this looked cool, and I could even see right where my old street was, I wanted to zoom out so I could also see the lake. Once I zoomed out I could center it again so the lake was to the left, and my hometown was on the right. At the bottom of the map, I decided to label it, “Chautauqua”. The coordinates even show up at the bottom without having to look it up on your own. I could not believe how simple it was to create such a special map!
This piece of art will always be so meaningful to me because the place it represents holds such a special place in my heart; home.
Thank you to Mapiful for sponsoring this post. All thoughts and opinions are my own!
One thing I love about text art or digital prints is that you can share your personality so clearly through each piece. It can make a room quirky, funny, inspiring or just plain enjoyable.
For a while I have been obsessed with cute prints on Etsy to hang throughout my home. Whether it be for our living room, kitchen, bedroom and lately our daughter’s nursery they are in frames all throughout our house. They are such an easy thing to refresh and change when you get tired of it, or just switch out during the seasons.
Finally I decided to create some of my own prints, and once I started I didn’t stop! I found an awesome website called Society6 that allows me to house all my prints for people to purchase. Currently I have 221 designs to browse. From motivational to silly, to How I Met Your Mother to food related (SO many food related), there are tons to choose from.
Check them out, and as always if you have any comments, suggestions or ideas you’d like to see just send me a message or comment below!
When it comes to art there are so many different types that can fill your home. From paintings to pictures, and sculptures to knick knacks there are tons of options to choose from when looking for the perfect decor.
For the longest time we did not have any art on our walls because of two reasons. The first being that I thought art was too expensive. The places I was looking just didn’t seem realistic to buy from because it was way more than I could afford. The second reason was I really didn’t know what I wanted. I had no idea what to put on the walls, or around my house on shelves and bookcases. I was totally clueless.
Then I started thinking outside the box. I began using all sorts of things as art, and some were so cheap or even free. I had the chance to try some DIY art as well, and it was a fun process.
Use magazines, cards or calendars for art.
We received a beautiful card at our wedding that was 3D. It was incredibly way too cute to get rid of, so for the longest time it just sat on my dresser. I had no idea what to do with it, when I realized, “Wait, it’s so adorable, why don’t I hang it up!”
That’s exactly what I did, and now each day I get to see this bright, little card that reminds me of my wedding day.
I’ve also done with this cool magazine ads or calendar prints that I can frame. SO CHEAP!
There are tons of ideas floating around Pinterest that it’s so easy to find something you love that is easy to make. Remember the blue button tree that was constantly pinned years ago? I thought I’d try that and now I love bringing this little orange tree I made out in the fall season. All it took was a little paint, buttons and hot glue.
I also made the fun little Welcome sign below. That was a little trickier to make. I used the same technique to make this as I did here.
Repurpose something fun.
There are so many old pieces of furniture that you can repurpose. Old shutters, pieces or wood, doors, and old windows are just a few examples of things you can try to restore or paint over. Again, there are tons of tutorials and examples on Pinterest if you’re looking for some inspiration.
I bought this old shutter from a friend. It was so easy to sand down, and repaint so I can hang pictures on it with clothespins,
Find cute prints that are meaningful and easy to frame.
One of my latest crazes is creating text prints to frame in my home. They can be fun and quirky, and add lots of character to a home. They are perfect for a fun gallery wall in your home.
A friend gave this to my daughter for her nursery and I think it is adorable!
Recently I purchased an old shutter at a garage sale. I didn’t know what I was going to do with it, but it was so cheap and I had seen things like this on Pinterest so I went for it.
I found a perfect spot in my dining room where it would fit nicely, and decided to use it as a means to hold pictures. I bought some cute clothespins at Michael’s that fit into the shutter perfectly.
It needed to be sanded down first. Once it was sanded, I wanted a different color because I was not a fan of the faded brown color. I spray painted it with two coats of plain gray spray paint also purchased at Michaels. It was tricky to spray paint with all the nooks and crannies of the shutter without running a little. When spraying it’s important to stand back and move your arm constantly back and forth so the paint doesn’t build up and start to drip. It needed only one coat on both sides with some touch up work in between.
Once it was dry I brought it inside, and placed the pictures with no problem. Easy DIY project!
Here and there I feel like getting a little crafty. The latest project was a DIY Colorful World Map. What better way to show our world than in a rainbow of color?
This was very easy, but extremely tedious. I made two, one black and one white. Personally I like the way the white one turned out better, but the black piece is what was used for the tutorial.
The first thing I did was buy a plain, wooden board at Michael’s, along with colorful paints, and paint brushes.
I painted the board completely over with the different colored paints. For the white map I mixed together the colors so it looked like a faded rainbow of color on the whole board. For the black map I painted different colored strips all over the board without mixing it perfectly. For both maps I never even washed my brush, I just kept mixing the colors.
Next I printed a map of the world from my computer. You could use anything design, written out text in Word, or any picture you wanted to do this project. I flipped the paper over to the blank side and shaded over any of the printed continents.
Once the back was shaded I flipped it back to the correct side and laid the paper down over the dry rainbow painted board. Because the back was now shaded I traced the edges of the continents onto the board. The shading from the back left a mark on on the paper so I knew exactly where the lines where.
Once all the lines were traced onto the board, I painted around the edges of the continents with the white or black. The white needed to be done at least two times, if not more in certain areas because of its light color, but the black only needed to be painted over once.
When painting the white was much easier to see the lines than the black.
If you’re interested in purchasing either one, please check out my Etsy shop to see if they’re still available!
Sometimes we go on Pinterest, Instagram or any type of social media account and see these immaculate homes. These rooms are beautiful with the best light fixtures, amazing rugs, pillows and decor that match perfectly.
Then I look up and glance around the room and realize my home looks nothing like these homes. Not even close. Maybe bits and pieces, but certainly not full rooms.
But you know what, THAT’S OKAY.
Over the years with the help from my two best friends, Target and Homegoods, I have been able to accumulate small touches to my home that not only spruce it up a bit, but literally put a smile on my face.
Here are some very small touches you can add to your home to spruce it up a little bit. These are no going to blow your mind, but sometimes it’s a good reminder. Maybe you already have a few of these, but maybe you don’t.
Snag a cute doormat.
There are tons of doormat’s out there. It doesn’t even have to be super expensive. Places like Walmart or Target even have them for around $10 sometimes. Doormats just add a small touch to your little porch, and are a nice, inviting welcome as someone walks to your front door. Here is the link to my pineapple doormat.
Plants- real or fake!
Any type of plant can add a beautiful touch to your rooms. Plants can improve the air quality of your home, or add a pop of color. You can either get plants that are in it for the long haul, or if you’re afraid of commitment just pick yourself up some grocery store flowers for the kitchen. If you’re worried you don’t have the green thumb and somehow all of your plants seem to die, just get artificial ones. Some fake flowers or some potted plants look so real people may not even notice.
Do you research on indoor plants before you buy one. Make sure there is enough sunlight or not too much sunlight for where you choose to keep your plant. Determine how much water it needs and how often.
Homegoods always has tons of artificial planters. There may be at least one small artificial plant in each room of my house. They’re just too cute, I can’t resist!
Candles, candles everywhere!
Okay, maybe it’s just me but I may have a slight obsession with candles. And not just the candles you burn, but candles that I will NEVER burn because they’re just too cute!
I have candles all throughout the house. There is at least one burning candle in every downstairs room. They are so cozy, and they make the house smell good, and different all the time.
I know candles may seem obvious. But think about it, one candle in each room gives you at least something easy and small to put on a shelf or a table in each room. It’s a quick, easy fix to having bare or empty spaces.
Stack, stack, stack it up.
How many old books or magazines do you have around you house? Stack those books or magazines and it can give your shelves or furniture a new dimensional look. Small items can have their own little stage to be displayed on instead of looking so tiny and alone by themselves.
If you’ve put items on a shelf and you’re just not digging it, try stacking. It just might be the little change you need.
Small items that give your rooms a little character can be a great way to spruce up your home. Try to include meaningful items in your home, or just small items that make you happy. It may include small souvenirs from places you visit, old antique objects that belonged to an older generation, or just simple things from places like Homegoods or Target.
Personally, my husband and I try to pick up a small item for our home each time we travel to a new place. It’s fun when objects have a story behind them.
I know sometimes the idea of displaying art can seem overwhelming. Art can be expensive, and it can be tricky to match what you want to the decor or colors of a room.
There are tons of cheap art options that you can use in your home though. Think about all the places you can get cheap art that you love.
Nowadays phones do an amazing job capturing pictures, and there are so many places that can print your pictures for you in any size you’d like. Find a picture you love and a frame that it can go in and it’s a simple, cheap way to add art to your wall.
My friend worked at a card company for a little while. For our wedding she gave us a card that unlike the others I couldn’t allow myself to recycle. I cut the front off and now we display that as a cute little art piece in our home. It’s a small, daily reminder of our special day. Save cards that are memorable or sweet and frame them as easy art in your home.
Ever thought to pull pictures from an old book or a magazine? Those could be just as easy to frame. How about a pretty calendar? There’s twelve pictures right there for you!
Again, these are not mind blowing, super unique ideas but just a reminder to think outside the box on where you can find awesome things to fill your home.