Friday, April 1, 2016

BEST DESIGN:Natural Birch Twig Wreaths & Honeysuckle

I love designing unique, different, wild & woodsy wreaths!
My wreath-making expertise has been gained in bits and pieces, kind of like twigs. Let me share with you some real knowledge about creating natural wreaths.
Many or most wreaths have a tight look that I've never been a fan of. I have loved designing wreaths for years, so I needed to come up with a different base for unique wreath designs.
Two materials give your "wild & woodsy" wreath bases and designs a wild and natural look that is so popular. The first is wild birch sticks fashioned into a round or oval wreath base, and the second is loops and curls of honeysuckle vine.
Do these natural materials last? Will my wreath design hold up when using birch sticks and honeysuckle vine? Absolutely YES... they certainly will.
Wild birch wreaths can be twisted and fashioned together without wiring or tying in any way. The secret is in knowing how to twist and shape them so they will never come loose. Yes, it does take a certain knack or talent to do just that.
I am certainly blessed to have a young woman who lives up in the mountains who knows exactly how to grab a few birch twigs and twist and turn them so that I could never pull them back apart.
The second natural material used in "wild & woodsy" wreaths is honeysuckle.
Honeysuckle certainly gives your creations that wild, woodsy and natural look. It also provides perfect resting places for bird nests and other critters. It may even help enhance the shape of the wreath. But what you can't see is that it adds strength and durability.
In fact, if you like designing character wreaths, some of the sentimental pieces used in those can be made of wood or pottery and can be quite heavy. Honeysuckle to the rescue!
For example, to add a clay pot to a wreath, tie the honeysuckle into a loop, attach it to the wreath with pipe cleaners, moss and hot glue. They you can slide the pot into the ring - securing it with glue. You might want to cover where it is attached with fresh moss and hot glue. No one will ever know what is securing this heavy clay pot into your design.
The honeysuckle vine will hold such an addition securely and generally enhances or adds to the strength of the wreath base.
Harvesting honeysuckle:
Driving down any wooded country road, you can find honeysuckle vines in the undergrowth or at the base of a tree or fence. (Well, at least in South Carolina you can).
It likes to twist around tree branches as it grows high in the trees, among the branches. You can find it any time of year, but it's much easier to harvest in the late fall or winter, when it has lost its leaves. Pulling it down out of the tree is much easier then.
If you do happen to harvest honeysuckle when it has leaves on it, just let them dry and gently rub them off the stems. I say gently, because you don't want the vine itself to break into. Just cut the vine at the point where it comes up out of the ground and then merely pull the remainder of the vine out of the tree or bush.
As soon as you have collected the honeysuckle vine, wrap it around in a circle and secure it with wire.
Honeysuckle will dry out and become brittle after it is harvested. By immediately looping it into circles and storing it this way, you eliminate much of the breakage and it will be ready and waiting for you, when you begin to make your wreath. Only cut as much as you may need, so that it will be fresh when you are ready to add it to a wreath.
When incorporating honeysuckle into your twig wreath, there are a couple of ways to integrate it into your wreath base. I use pipe cleaners or wire to tie it to the twig wreath base.
While weaving it into your wreath, don't forget to add the loops to hold special clay pots or other pieces. You can also bring out a few loops to fashion a holder for a bird nest. In fact, I demonstrate this weaving process in more detail in a number of wreath-making videos I have filmed.
This is where your creativity should be loosed - be creative! Let the swirls of honeysuckle extend above and below the wreath. Make loops and curls. Let your imagination be your guide.
Nancy Alexander is a world renowned wreath designer and owner of She has over 25 years of experience in floral design and interior decorating and is known for her unique and custom floral designs. Nancy has filmed many instructional videos on floral design, and offers several e-books.

5 Tips for You to Find the Perfect Wallpaper for Your House

While redecorating one's house, many homeowners get tempted to try something new and unique. Painting is a process that's been around for decades and though there have been several introductions of unique paints and patterns that have helped people enhance the beauty of their house or office. But still it's painted and to break the norm, covering walls in wallpapers have been in trend for the past few years.
A much better substitute to painting
It can include composition, shading, design or a painterly scene - considerably more so than paint, wallpapers can change the whole look of a room. In any case, given the expense and the requirement for expert assistance (an absolute necessity), installing them can seem like a pricey affair. On the off chance that you've been looking to add wallpaper to your space yet refraining from it, these tips ought to facilitate a lot of assistance for you. Equipped with such information, you can locate the right wallpaper for you.
Clip images: One of the first things that you should do is begin collecting pictures of the designs which you like. Whether it's cutting an image from a magazine, snapping a picture of cafe or mall you recently visited or even capturing the hotel you stayed in recently. Compare these snaps and ascertain the pattern. See the theme upon which the designs are based on and then narrow it down to the one which you feel is the right option for your house.
Don't just follow the trends: Just because a design is in trend these days doesn't mean that you have to follow them too. Your home decor should be about what you love or what you can relate to, not some poll in an interior decoration magazine. You should never design your walls with some colors or patterns which are in stark contrast with your tastes and preferences.
Test the samples: Just like you would have looked at a sample of the paint before painting them, getting a sample wallpaper is highly significant. Get the sample and place it on the wall for a few days. See how it is looking and if you think that it's not going with your home decor look for a different design.
Know what you are looking for: You should know why you are using these patterned wall decorations for your house. Whether it's to enhance the warmth of your home or adding an edgy feeling to the interiors, you have to decide what you want from this kind of decors.
Consider the view from all angles: You should make sure that you don't ascertain the success of the design just by standing in from of them. Make sure you judge them from all possible angles and also from other rooms.

How To Choose The Right Interior Designer

Choosing an interior designer can be a delicate matter. The person or firm of choice will work with you regularly and carefully to achieve the look and feel that you are seeking. Hence, the relationship is often a close and personal one. Redesigning your home or office can be an exhaustive venture, but it should be an exciting one. Therefore, it is best to take the time to consider what you want and expect from a relationship with an interior designer. Doing so will help you to select the right designer to play an active role in your life while decorating your home.
Before you make initial contact with an interior designer, you need to sit down and assess your work schedule. Think about your preferred method of working and to what extent you want your involvement to be in the creative process.
Asking yourself a few question can be extremely helpful in isolating the type of interior designer you want as a partner. For instance, do you want to get day-to-day details or are you desiring only to be made aware of big picture issues? Do you need comprehensive help from the initial stages to the actual incorporation of the design? Do you have most of the project in mind and just need basic help with resources, planning and use of space and color?
Think about whether you are a tactile person or a visual person. Would you be satisfied with seeing photos of products or do you need to see and feel everything before making a decision? You also need to decide whether you want to your designer to supply you with several options or just a few options? Some people think more options are too confusing and make the process much more challenging.
The scope of your project is a determining factor in deciding which kind of interior designer you need. Try to figure out how much experience and what qualifications they must have before taking on your particular project. Some projects may only require a single specialist while others may necessitate a team.
Clarify the credentials of the designer. Ask about their educational background and experience. Ask to see a portfolio and ask for references. If you take the time to plan out your decisions before starting the process to hire an interior designer, you are much more likely to select someone with whom you can build a strong relationship and get positive results.

How To Personalize Your Condominium Unit

However, due to all the bills and payments that come with purchasing a condo, not everyone can afford to hire an interior designer. That doesn't mean that a condo owner has to compromise the fun of interior designing; as a matter of fact, DIY home decorating can also be as fun and rewarding.
A home is a reflection of the owner's personality; it is an evident manifestation of the inner self. Society also believes that an individual's lifestyle and environment are a clear sign of his/her social standing. At the end of the day, whether people are aware of it or not, they'll embellish their environment and transform their homes into an extension of their personality. So today, I've managed to create a brief article that will walk homeowners and aspiring home buyers through the fundamentals of DIY home decorating.
1. Get ideas
With the abundance of designs and inspirations scattered on the web, homeowners will surely find a concept that'll appeal to them. Websites like Pinterest, Freshome, and even lifestyle magazines have a pool of various styles that will surely catch the eye and spark the creativity of different dwellers. After collecting a range of inspiring images, choose the ones that appeal the most and start from there.
2. Stick to a color scheme
The 3-color rule is simple; choose one primary color and two complimentary shades. It's pretty much like picking a hero with two sidekicks. For example, choose red as the hero and white and black as its sidekicks. If a more playful palette is in mind, a dweller can opt for colors such as mint green, brown, and white. But like every rule, the 3-color rule can also be broken. Think of it as a guideline rather than an unbreakable law. It is something an individual can turn to when they are in doubt.
3. Add a little oomph to the space
Without statement pieces, a designed space may tend to look dull; especially rooms that feature a two color scheme. Filling a room with a range of tiny furniture and leggy chairs can make it confusing for the eyes, not to mention, boring. This is a mistake most homeowners make. To balance it out, it would be wise to create a combination of small and large, statement pieces. Aside from incorporating various furniture styles, another trick would be adding texture to the space. If a dweller prefers an all-white room or let's say, a minimalistic two-colour theme, it would be advisable to create a subtle array of textures. Think of plush chairs, woven trays, and faux fur pillow cases; it'll surely be a sight to wake up to every morning.
4. Let there be light
Natural lighting isn't typical for condominium units, so might as well make it stand out from the rest. In Chinese Feng Shui, they consider having rays of sunrise in their home to be good luck. Now, if a certain door in the unit doesn't seem necessary, feel free to remove it or replace it with glass panels. This way, the dweller can save on electricity, money and enjoy a well-lit space. Condo owners can also choose to create a drop panel ceiling with charming stained wood. This will be suspended over the space and add a feel of warmth and intimacy to any room.
With the abundance of condo units in the real estate market, dwellers can freely choose a space that will suit their preferences. But even when the choices run limited, it all boils down to the skill and creativity of the condo owner. Keep in mind that no matter how big or limited the space is, the key is to make the most out of what you have.However, due to all the bills and payments that come with purchasing a condo, not everyone can afford to hire an interior designer. That doesn't mean that a condo owner has to compromise the fun of interior designing; as a matter of fact, DIY home decorating can also be as fun and rewarding.
Olivia Coore is a catapult of ideas waiting to explode. She basically writes about anything she finds amusing; may it be a new found hobby, a recently opened coffee shop, visiting a new place, life goals, documentaries, investing either in personal affairs, such as experience, skills, and travel, or in general trade like real estate, stocks, career and business opportunities. She hopes to find meaning in everything she does and makes her learning available for others to take inspiration in. She is currently working as a Senior Director of Correspondence at an investment firm in Miami, and believes that the best stories are always found between the pages of a passport.

The Luxurious & Natural Rug - The Cowhide

When you are searching for the ideal pieces to install in your home décor, take a closer look at what cowhide rugs have to offer. A cowhide rug may not be the most commonly thought of type of material for home décor, but it offers unique individuality that ultimately may bring your décor to life.
The Luxury of Cowhide
When you think of luxurious materials to incorporate into your home décor, cowhide may not be at the top of the list. This is a material that is easy to overlook, yet it may have a place in your home as a luxurious element that adds beauty and individuality to your home. Natural animal skin rugs of all kinds are high-end elements because of their uniqueness, and cowhide provides the rustic charm that will tone down your décor while still incorporating the luxury of animal skin in your home. This unique combination of benefits may make it ideal for your home décor.
The Intense Natural Appeal
A cowhide rug is a material that has intense natural appeal because of its texture, coloring and overall unique look. Each cowhide rug is as unique as the animal that it came from. Some of these rugs are available in solid hues, such as white, buff or black. Others are mottled, and they may have black speckles on a white background or vice versa. The speckling of the cowhide may be intense and detailed, or it may be minor with only a few speckles throughout the entire rug. This gives the rug a personalized element that will give your home true character in a natural way.
Other Great Benefits
While cowhide rugs are both luxurious and natural, they also offer other benefits for you to enjoy. For example, they are hardwearing and durable, making them ideal for use in even the most trafficked areas of the home. You will never have to worry about cowhide rugs showing foot traffic patterns or other signs of wear. More than that, they are hypo-allergenic, making them suitable for use in homes of allergy sufferers. Plus, they also have versatility that you will not find with other features. Cowhide rugs can be used on floors, but they also can be used as a throw over the back of the couch or as a wall covering. They are versatile in terms of style as well, and you can find these in homes with decorative schemes that range from rustic country to modern.
If you are searching for new pieces to add to your home décor and you are focused on finding items that are both luxurious and natural, take a closer look at some of the styles of cowhide rugs available to choose from. You may be pleasantly surprised to find the perfect rugs that you can use in your space, and you can start enjoying all of these benefits in your home soon.
Lisa Fitzgerald is the Marketing Manager for City Cows, a UK-based company selling a wide variety of natural animal skin rugs.