Monthly Archives: September 2012

Gypsy? Hippie? SCARF CURTAINS!!

I haven’t written on this blog in over a week! Where has the time gone?! Geez! There are times that I have so much to say that its a challenge to find the time to write any of it! I bet you other bloggers face the same issue. Anyway, . . . Here, in THIS moment, I have time to write:

First, if youre a subscriber, you might have noticed that I haven’t shown our dining room on this site yet, despite the fact that I think it will be one of the more impressive rooms in our house. Two reasons: art wall and curtains. See, a couple months ago, we switched the rooms around. What was once a den attached to the kitchen became the dining room and vice versa. It kind of threw everything into disarray for a bit. We have 15-20 original works of art leaning against walls awaiting their new gallery style / salon style installation in the dining room, at least 3 of them are canvases 48″ in size. The glass tile fireplace installation was fun. I’m glad we switched the rooms around, because I LOVE having the fireplace in our dining room. But, there are still a couple projects awaiting supplies or my time. Work in progress.

Work in progress. Second, If you’ve been following me on Pinterest, you may have seen that I’ve pinned a few sets of curtains made of scarves recently. See the inspirational photos that helped me choose a direction, by clicking here, here,and here. See? Aha! Easy, breezy curtains for the dining room made of varying sheer or shiny scarves?! Well, with 10′ ceiling and a desire for floor-to-ceiling curtains, that would require A LOT of scarves; so, I decided to buy scarf style material! I decided I would some of the yards of silk that friends brought me as a present from one of their recent shopping excursions in the fabric district in China and 3 more fabrics that I purchased locally. Btw, yes, friends (also, former neighbors of ours) travelled all the way to China and along the way they visited a region known for their textile production. They shipped back YARDS of beautiful silks. I’m planning to hang the new curtains using by clipping the fabric onto rings. Easy. Breezy. Mix of prints. Mix of colors. Etc.
Here, in the next photo, you can see my new fabrics just tossed across the curtain rod awaiting sewing and proper installation. You can also see a bit of other items in the dining room:
(click on photo to enlarge it)

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Today, among other errands, I shopped for the curtain rings with clips attached, in order to hang my scarves and fabric in the dining room that I told you about yesterday.

There were several options available. What to do? What to do? DIY, of course! I bought a bag of miniature wooden clothespins from the craft department at WalMart and bundles of costume jewelry from a jewelry store on Chenal Parkway, here in Little Rock. I made a total of 50 rings with clips by using a little spray paint, heavy duty upholstery thread, and a few unused napkin rings and bracelets that I had sitting around.

My rings with clips are an assortment of sizes, all in silver and gold tones! I LOVE the look much, much more than if they were all standard, uniform rings. See the DIY process: (click photo to enlarge)

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1. Buy miniature clothespins and mass produced jewelry.
2. Snip hardware, just leaving the giant hoops of the earrings. (I used earrings that gave me a total of 8 usable hoops per pair.)
3. Clip clothespins onto cardboard and spray paint them black.
4. Use heavy thread or wire to tie clips onto the ring (the thread fit through the spring in the clothespins, so drilling wasn’t necessary! Yea!)
5. Slide them onto the curtain rod and use the clips to pinch the scarves and fabric! Enjoy!
(I was able to use this DIY method for creating curtain clips that saved us A LOT of money in exchange for minimal time invested by me to put it all together.)

I’m pretty pleased with myself about this little curtain project of mine!
Yards and yards of fabric, lots and lots of my silk scarves, and a little DIY = my OWN curtain wall. Nobody will walk in and say, “Oh, so and so bought those same curtains,” or any such thing. That’s enough to keep me happy. My scarves are all still usable if I change to something else next year, and all of the scarves have some sort of memory attached to them, since they were ALL accumulated and worn throughout the years. For example, the scarf that has “Paris” all over it, was purchased by my grandmother in Paris as a gift for me when she travelled a few years ago. Are my curtains Hippie curtains? Gypsy style? I don’t know. I don’t care that they’re not traditional window treatments. I’m enjoying them! I care most that I think they look good, are functional for diffusing light where needed, and they’re reusable/repurposable on a whim! Love. πŸ™‚ I’m still playing around with the placement/draping of the scarves and fabric; I’ll have it finalized before I “reveal” this room in its entirety in a separate post!

(click on photo to enlarge)

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Later!
Your Friend,
~Amber Hamilton Henson

PS
Enjoy my projects or links? Please, pin it, tweet it, like it, whatever… just be social and feel free to share as long it links back to here and my watermarks are visible on the photos! Also, if you do feature this curtain project in some way on your blog/site/’zine, please let me know!

This post will link to several Daily DIY parties, you can visit the links:
Unique Window Treatments Category @ FunkyJunkInteriors
Sunday’s Best #50 @ My1929Charmer
Masterpiece Monday #92 @ BoogieBoardCottage
Mod Mix Monday #70 @ Mod Vintage Style
Mop It Up Mondays #36 @ iShouldBeMoppingTheFloor
Be Inspired #39 @ ElizabethAndCo
Primp Your Stuff #65 @ PrimpJunktion
Wow Us Wednesday #86 @ SavvySouthernStyle
Wicked Awesome Wednesday #81 @ HandyManCraftyWoman

This post is featured in Hat Trick magazine! Click on the magazine cover to be re-directed to Hat Trick magazine:

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Library/Home Office Tour

When you walk through our front door, standing in the foyer, look to your left. Our home library is the room you see. You can see other rooms by visiting my “decor” page and selecting a room to tour. This blog is a work in progress, one room per post.
(click on photo to enlarge it)

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We painted the room green, built the bookshelves, sewed the curtains, covered all the chairs.

The bookshelves cover an entire wall, however, despite recently donating most of my novels, we still have WAY TOO MANY books to fit onto the bookshelves. Right now, we have a couple stacks of books that are four feet tall beside the shelves, all of my cookbooks are kept in the kitchen, etc. We have plans to build a couple more sets of shelves soon. Really soon.

What’s on the bookshelves? Well, my rolls of sign vinyl are on the bottom, then a row of kid books, then reference books, gardening books, decorating, DIY, college textbooks, Mitch’s childhood encyclopedia set, and books that have passed to me by family. Sounds like a lot of books? Nope. Not nearly as many as some of my family members.

Just like in the rest of the house, I keep real plants anywhere I can reach them, and i only use artificial plants for areas I can only reach with a ladder. (10 foot ceilings, here)

Here’s the top of the bookshelves: (click to enlarge)

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Here are a couple views around the room: showing the bookshelf wall; big birdcage hanging in front of the windows; elephant and bird collection that sits on top of the armoire that holds my Summa sign cutter; our wacky old sewing chair with built-in storage that we found at a thrift market and re-upholstered: (click to enlarge)

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Here are a few more views around the room: the industrial file cabinets that I’ve labeled for myself and our girls to keep their schoolwork through the years and vital records (the other four drawers on the 2nd file cabinet are on my “to do” list); the 1930s “satellite” chair that we re-upholstered; aloe vera and houseplants; fountain; decorative pieces: (click to enlarge)

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Here are a few more views around the room: the diamond fabric covered screen/shroud hides my old metal steel tanker desk, so that you’re not looking at the backside of the computer/printer/hub/etc; our chrome glass-topped “Sputnik” table for our daughters’ afternoon homework with our chrome chairs from the 70s, topped by a tray that holds a few essentials for homework; a close-up of the fabric of our floor-to-ceiling curtains that I sewed: (click to enlarge)

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Like I said, I got rid of most of my novels and just read on my iPad via iBooks or NOOKapp, now. However, when it comes to “look books,” I doubt technology will ever be able to replace how I feel about being able to sit down, open up, and spread out several books at once the way I do. It’s kind of my quiet time to regenerate creative energies. Surprisingly, blogging and visiting so many blogs lately seems to be having this same effect, sparking my creativity…
(click to enlarge)

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That concludes our tour of this room! You’ll notice i didnt show you my desktop. Well, its piled high with papers, magazines, the girls’ stuff from school, and MORE at the moment. If I clear it off anytime soon, I’m sure I’ll probably be proud enough to write a post about it! Lol. Second, I may re-edit this post at a later day just to add a few “behind the scenes” photos to the end of this post that show the “before” shots of the chairs and the “during” bookshelf building.

Enjoy my projects or links? Please, pin it, tweet it, like it, whatever… just be social and feel free to share as long it links back to here! Also, if you do feature this room in some way on your blog/site/’zine, please let me know, and I’ll add your link into this post!

Later! (more photos at the bottom of this post!)
See you in blogland!
Your Friend,
~Amber Hamilton Henson

PS This room of ours is looking forward to the party circuit!! The daily links:
Catch as Catch Can #90 @ My Repurposed Life
Link Party and Mes Preferes #73 @ ReDoux Interiors
PotPourri Party #42 @ 2805
Inspiration Friday #83 @ AtThePicketFence
What’s Cluckin’ #21 @ ChickenScratchNY
Wow Us Wednesday #86 @ SavvySouthernStyle

The individual / detail photos in no particular order:

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Hot Pink Duck Tape Curtains

Have you ever used “Duck Tape” on a curtain project? No? Well, guess what!! We did! Even better, it is HOT PINK!

We were in line at WalMart, waiting to check out with a 2″ wide package of blanket binding (ribbon) to use as reinforcement for our DIY grommet top curtains to close the closet in our daughter’s hot pink bedroom, when she spotted the hot pink duck tape and asked, “Mom, Mom, Mom, look!! Can we use this instead? Pleeeeeeeassssse?!”

I couldn’t think of a good reason why not. Heck, it’s kind of fun!!

So, we bought the hot pink “duck tape” brand tape to use as a reinforcement for the sheer curtain materials prior to installing the grommets on the curtain panels for her closet.

Here she is, working with Hot Pink Duck Tape! :

( You’ll notice that by Applying the tape on BOTH sides of the material and using a brayer, we were able to make the duck tape stick to itself through the loose, open weave of the sheers!)

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(click photos to enlarge into new window/tab)

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See our littlest helper, age 1 and a half? πŸ™‚

In other hot pink bedroom news, I also finished sewing all of the sheers and curtain panels. See next photo…. Aaaaand, for her hot pink bedroom, we bought her the little glittery mosquito net type canopy that she wanted…Ten year old girl, she is, indeed, wanting such a sparkly thing! Love her!!

Want to see other fun stuff happening in the Hot Pink Bedroom? Check out our Hot Pink Bedroom post to see the funky silver chest, antique heirloom furniture, and original paintings by internationally known artists!

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πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚
Laters!

Enjoy my projects or links? Please, pin it, tweet it, like it, whatever… just be social and feel free to share as long it links back to here! Also, if you do feature this project in some way on your blog/site/’zine, please let me know, and I’ll add your link into this post!
Your Friend,
~Amber Hamilton Henson

PS:

Guess what else happened?! I submitted our “Ducktivity” to DuckBrand.com and they tweeted our link to their 7,000+ followers on twitter! Looking at their recent tweets, they are highlighting some other really, really cute projects! Including a houndstooth duck tape pumpkin and more! Click the photo below this text to find their twitter account!
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Master Bedroom Tour

Welcome to our Our Master Bedroom Suite!

(At any point, you can click on a photo, and an enlarged copy will open in a new window/tab!)


Pinning Welcome!

On this site, bits and pieces of different rooms are visible in my project posts and recipe posts, but this is my VERY FIRST “finished” whole room reveal in Blogland! YAY!

We’ve had a hand in creating A LOT of what is in the room you are about to see.

Specifically:
*We put in new hardwood Sapele floors.
*We painted the walls using Home Depot’s flat Behr “Smokey Topaz.”
*We built and upholstered the headboard.
*We built and upholstered the valance.
*We painted the antique dress form and covered her in leather.
*We painted and applied vinyl graphics to a vanity.
*We painted and upholstered the stool for the vanity.
*We reupholstered the antique Italian settee.
*We decoupaged an antique door and hung it above the bed.
*We created the “floral” arrangements and potted the plants.
*We accessorized using pieces passed down through the family, gifts, and a few unique finds from specialty boutiques.

I’m sure I’m forgetting things in the list, but you get the gist of it, right? This isn’t a catalog room by any stretch of the imagination. It is ours, just ours, and we worked for it. Several of these projects happened just prior to beginning of this blog, since I just started two months ago, but a few have happened recently. For example, you can read more about the door in my “Crazy Old Door” post, or read a tutorial about applying vinyl graphics to furniture in my “Vanity” post by clicking on those links.

Have you signed up to receive my updates or “liked” the Facebook page, yet?

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In this first area that I’m showing in the next photos, you’re looking to the far end of the room. You see the door we decoupaged, headboard we built, the bed, a pair of contemporary chests, and the antique settee we re-upholstered:

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The next photo is the top of the chest on “his” side of the bed, topped by a floral arrangement, lamp, copper car musicbox, wooden car storage box, and a little piggy bank from his childhood:

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The next photo shows the top of the chest on “her” (my) side: Similar to his, except that instead of cars, I have pieces of silver handed down to me from my grandmother and a silver plate trinket box given to me by a friend:

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Next, also on my side, you see my re-vamped antique dress form that was in terrible condition when I purchased it. We painted it gloss black and covered the crumbling, tattered paper-ish form of the body in real black leather. She is fully functional, now, spinning, widening and compressing as needed. You can also see a red lacquered jewelry box from my mother in-law and one of my many vintage lucite purses from the ’50s:

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Next, you’ll see my deco vanity vignette with stacked mirrors, wall shelves, with arrangements, crystal lamps and clocks, houseplants, & crystal candleholders on top of the vanity.

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Next, you’re seeing the “window wall” area of our bedroom. Basically, it is a large pair of windows adorned by curtains, embroidered sheers, and custom valance that coordinates with the headboard. The window is flanked by a pair of HUGE 7 foot tall mirrors. Other items visible include a pair of multi-drawer jewelry chests that hold my collection of bracelets and necklaces that I make. A little shelf holding a capiz shell lamp, other little decor, and my tanning bed that I hardly ever use, because I have decided to embrace my paleness. Actually, from this point forward, I’m not going refer to myself as pale, but “porcelain,” instead. There.

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Now, in the next four photos, you’re looking at the “window wall” from the other direction, you see the tanning bed, tv, a few stars painted black, a mirror, and the rug. Do you see the rug? The rug is made entirely of scraps left over from neck-tie manufacturing. Each little piece of necktie is individually stuffed and sewn onto a backing. Neat, right? The international manufacturer’s import/export home office is here in Little Rock, and, once upon a time, they would open their warehouse one day per month to us locals and sell their overstock at wholesale prices! Perhaps, they still open once a month. I don’t know because it has been several months since I’ve been there. The pictures:

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Well, that concludes my tour.

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Thanks for taking the time to look around our room! I may be proud of the space, but I’m also quite flattered that you took the time to look! I’ll get around to photographing other rooms in our home at some point soon, as we complete several more projects that are midpoints!

Your Friend,
~Amber Hamilton Henson

PS
Enjoy my projects or links? Please, pin it, tweet it, like it, whatever… just be social and feel free to share as long it links back to here! Also, if you do feature this room in some way on your blog/site/’zine, please let me know, and I’ll add your link into this post!

This room will go on tour with other rooms at a few blog parties!
Daily Links:
Weekend WrapUp @ TatorTotsAndJello
Get Schooled Saturday @ TooMuchTime
DIY projects @ The36thAvenue
Saturday Nite @ FunkyJunkInteriors
Sunday’s Best @ My1929Charmer
Make The Scene Mondays @ AlderBerryHill
Masterpiece Monday @ BoogieBoardCottage
Mod Mix Monday @ ModVintageLife
Nifty Thrifty Tuesday @ CoastalCharm
Be Inspired @ ElizabethAndCo
Wow Us Wednesdays @ SavvySouthernStyle
All Star Block Party @ SimplyDoneWright
PotPourri Party #42 @ 2805
Inspiration Friday #83 @ AtThePicketFence
What’s Cluckin’ @ ChickenScratchNY

Crazy Old Door

We bought a door, a really, really old door, from an architectural salvage booth at a thrift market, here in Little Rock. The door reminds me of my old, historic house that we sold. In that house, I loved adding really modern elements into the turn of the century home, because I loved the contrast. I still love contrast, so now I find myself adding historic pieces to our much newer (built in ’04-’05) modern house decor in order to achieve the contrast. This crazy old door is my newest addition to help provide the contrast that I love so much.

Did you notice that I threw the word “crazy” into the description of the old door? Well, it is a wood door, full of brittle, hand blown glass panes, with four, yes FOUR, locks on it. Crazy, right?! I’m thinking that if a person needs four locks on a door, perhaps they ought not have a glass exterior door in the first place. Alas, perhaps they finally realized this, too, which is why I was able to purchase it from amidst architectural salvage! πŸ˜‰

So, with no further adieu, here is the “before” picture of the door as it was:
(click on photos to see enlarged views in a new window/tab)

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You may notice that it is covered in glossy black enamel paint, over layers of white glossy enamel, over black, over black, etc. The paint, in general, is really well adhered, so I gave it a good old-fashioned scrubbing with a sponge and soapy water. I considered scraping the black-paint-gone-wild drips, runs, and roller marks from the glass panes, but ultimately decided that I like the character it adds to this old door. Furthermore, I decided not to replace the one missing pane of glass. Inexpensive, modern glass just wouldn’t look right beside the wavy panes with all of their wonderful ripples that show the age of the glass in the other panes.

We are not using it as a functional door; we decided to hang it on the wall as a decorative art piece in our master bedroom. In order to have it “fit” the room and be a little bit more than just a door hanging on a wall, we made a few changes. First, we trimmed it top and bottom on the table saw in order to make it fit its intended space. By the way, when trimming it, we discovered that it is a cedar door! Score!! Then, we decoupaged it with scrapbook paper and ModPodge. When I say “we decoupaged” it, what I actually mean to say is that my middle daughter, age 7, did all the work! She loves crafts and was more than eager to volunteer for the project! She did the work by our back door in the kitchen, and I just supervised while I was cooking dinner.

Here is a photo of the papers we used, followed by a photo of her working:

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Okay, here is the part where the door is no longer “crazy,” and I become the “crazy” one. Do you notice how much wood is at the base of the door compared to the top? Here comes my crazy: Just as much as I love contrast, I also have this strong gravitation/desire for symmetry. This door is going to hang sideways. It can’t look too busy at one end and as if it is lacking something at the other end. I NEED for it to feel balanced. So, since the ModPodge is gloss, I decided to “fake” three panes at the bottom of the door!! Look at the photo above this paragraph; see the three “panes” with wet whitish-looking glue on the papers. Yep, we inked the edged of the paper with an ink pad intended for stamping, measured proper gaps, and ModPodge’d those papers right onto the wood in order to give the illusion of three more panes!! Fortunately, ModPodge dries really clear and glossy! The desire for symmetry was important enough to me that I did actually create FAKE panes in order to have visual balance. See, told you, “crazy”, right? Regardless, I love the way it turned out! It’s just another layer of interest on this art piece, I hope!

Here is a close-up photo of the four locks on the crazy old door, followed by a photo of it hanging above our headboard in our master bedroom:

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We love it! We think it adds just the right amount of character, sense of history, and coordination with other pieces in our room. What do you think?

Want to see a few more neat projects using repurposed/upcycled doors & windows? Easy, click over to Dishfunctional Design’s project round-up posts here and here. Each of the photos she shows has a text link below the photo for even more info, some of which may be story/tutorial style similar to this post!

Your Friend,
~Amber Hamilton Henson

PS
My next post will show our master bedroom in it’s entirety. I already took the pictures! I think we have accumulated and created some neat pieces in our room. Stay tuned to see the rest of the room!

“Later ‘gators!” and “Afterwhile Crocodiles!” πŸ˜‰

Enjoy my projects or links? Please, pin it, tweet it, like it, whatever… just be social and feel free to share as long it links back to here! Also, if you do feature this room in some way on your blog/site/’zine, please let me know, and I’ll add your link into this post!

This article appears in Hat Trick Magazine, beginning on page 40! Read an online copy by clicking on the Hat Trick Magazine cover:

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This door was a “linky party feature, too!”
Neat! The links to see the features:

New House

This door will be hanging out in some great parties! Check my shares page for details! The daily links:
THURSDAY:
Home and Garden Thursdays @ Blissful Rhythm
Thursdays are Your Days @ 52Mantels
Tutorials, Tips, & Tidbits @ StoneGableBlog
Transformation Thursdays @ TheShabbyCreekCottage
Time Travel Thursday @ TheBrambleberryCottage
POWW Furniture Link Party @ PrimitiveAndProper
Treasure Hunt Thursday @ FromMyFrontPorchToYours
Hookin’ Up With HOH @ House of Hepworths
FRIDAY
Happy Hour Friday @ HappyHourProjects
Inspiration Friday @ AtThePicketFence
Vintage Inspiration @ CommonGround
Potpourri Party @ 2805
Link Party & Mes Preferes @ ReDouxInteriors
Catch As Catch Can @ MyRepurposedLife
Frugal Friday @ ShabbyNest
Furniture Feature Friday @ MissMustardSeed
DIY projects @ The36thAvenue
SATURDAY
Get Schooled Saturday @ TooMuchTime
Weekend WrapUp @ TatorTotsAndJello
Saturday Nite @ FunkyJunkInteriors
SUNDAY
Sunday’s Best @ My1929Charmer
MONDAY
Mop It Up Mondays @ IShouldBeMoppingTheFloor
TUESDAY
Be Inspired @ ElizabethAndCo
WEDNESDAY
Wow Us Wednesdays @ SavvySouthernStyle
All Star Block Party @ SimplyDoneWright

Autumn Joy Wreath! (+ DIY home happenings)

Good Morning!!

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Labor Day has come and gone; it’s time for me to switch wreaths. This is one of my favorite wreaths. I purchased a fairly simple grapevine wreath with a little sign already attached that said “Autumn Joy”. It also had a few faux leaves attached. Then, every year for the last several years I’ve added little tidbits. The wreath has grown and grown! It now includes 5 little scarecrow dolls of various sizes, a garland of leaves, lucite grapes, and … πŸ™‚

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Each year, I use this wreath from Labor Day through Thanksgiving. This year, I may make a “scary” Halloween wreath to use for 2-3 weeks near Halloween, too. We’ll see whether or not I can find the time and supplies between now and then.

Here is a brief update about other recent events since my last post: Because we created a new Hot Pink Bedroom for our oldest daughter, our middle daughter was feeling like she was left behind in the “old room” that they used to share as opposed to having her “own room”, so we decided we needed to update that room for her to make it her own. She chose a dark, yet vibrant, purple paint. I’m still sewing for our oldest daughter’s room, but now I have A LOT more to do for our middle daughter’s room as well. Here’s a peek at the new purple bedroom progress:

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During the last couple of months, we removed all of the carpet from the 4 bedrooms and closets that the previous owners had enjoyed. We’ve replaced the floor covering with my preference, hardwood floors. Now, other than bathrooms, ALL of the upstairs will be floored in a dark espresso finished hardwood!

Now, I’m heading away from this page to look around the blogosphere at other great Autumn project happenings! Later!
Your Friend,
~Amber Hamilton Henson

PS: (Be sure to check my “shares” page for upcoming blog parties and events!)
Oh, and I FINALLY made a Facebook page for my blog!! Hop over there and “like” it, please!!

Linking this post:
PARTIES:
Funky Fall Decorating @ FunkyJunkInteriors

MopItUpMondays, NiftyThriftyTuesday, WowUsWednesdays
Wreaths Feature @ Funky Junk Interiors
Home and Garden Thursdays @ Blissful Rhythm
Thursdays are Your Days @ 52Mantels
Transformation Thursdays @ TheShabbyCreekCottage
Time Travel Thursday @ TheBrambleberryCottage
Hookin’ Up With HOH @ House of Hepworths
Happy Hour Friday @ HappyHourProjects

Tour Our House!

Hello, Internet! Good Evening!! Welcome to our home!

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(click on photo to enlarge)

I have written a couple of posts during the last couple of days, but I haven’t published them, yet. The reason? Well, they are posts about interior design projects that are happening, and I felt like my readers needed more context in which to visualize the spaces as they relate to one another. So, here it is! A labeled “floorplan” of our house!

If you read my post about our last house, the old house that became a historic house, then you already know that I truly believe in value of a good set of floorplans for helping everyone be able to visualize space and how spaces flow from one another! So, I will definitely publish a set for this house if/when we sell it, too!

The room by room tours of this house:

Dining Room – set for a “Mad Tea Party!”
Bonus Room – the room over the garage!
Library/Office – our library and homework area!
Master Bedroom – a full tour of this room!
Bedroom 4 – daughter’s “Hot Pink Bedroom!”

Other bits and pieces of interior decor can be accessed through my “Decor and Crafts” page!

Yay! πŸ™‚

Your Friend,
~Amber