Monday, September 30, 2013

Fun With Jute Upholstery Webbing

Jute upholstery webbing has certainly been popular for a while.
I've used it for a few projects myself, and this time of year is when I like to get creative with this wonderful, natural, almost free material!

It makes a great banner for a fall wreath.

Or for a Christmas wreath like the one that I made last year.

I've seen it used to embellish lampshades like these at the Alameda Antique Fair.

And bulletin boards too... this one at Uniquely Chic Floral in Healdsburg.

The strips can be sewn together to make a fun pillow like this one from Etsy.

How fun is this growth chart, also from Etsy!
I'm putting this in my DIY bucket list for the granddaughters.

Then there was the bar stool I fell in love with that I saw in a Santa Fe window!

 Upholstery webbing can also be used to make placemats and table runners.

 I even used it to make personalized book marks for a tablescape that I did for my book group once.

Wrapping jute webbing around a candle not only cozies it up, but makes a wonderful "homemade" gift.
It's also a very easy project to do.

I'll never forget the first time I saw these candles at Uniquely Chic in Healdsburg.  I thought they were so fun and couldn't wait to try and duplicate them myself.
I think they are perfect for fall and plan to make some more for this autumn season.

I've already found the glass candles and have yards of upholstery webbing on hand.
The plan is to embellish them with either buttons or stencil words on them.
I purchased my red jute from JoAnn's Fabrics, but you can also purchase it online here.

The black webbing would be a great alternative.
Perfect for Halloween!
It can be purchased online here.

Stay tuned to see how my DIY jute upholstery webbing candles project turn out!

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Friday, September 27, 2013

Flashback Friday - Fishing Themed Tablescapes

This week I am once again a "fishing widow."
Yep, Mr. A headed north, way north, to fish some river in Canada.
While I'm not into fishing, I do love to set a fishing themed table!

This one is a favorite from 2010, set for a simple fisherman's luncheon, using Spode transferware and feather placemats.

I sat a ceramic fisherman whiskey decanter atop a stack of angling books for the centerpiece.

For a Father's Day table several years ago, I layered enamelware fly plates over enamelware faux bois chargers.

I used a wool tartan throw from Ralph Lauren for the tablecloth and French linen napkins.

Last winter, I mixed and matched the Spode trout plates with majolica and the same faux bois chargers.
I was going for a woodland stream effect down the center of the table.

It is fun mixing and matching my fish themed dishes, each time coming up with a new look depending on the linens and centerpiece.
However I mix it up, it still says "gone fishing!"

Want to set a masculine table for your favorite outdoorsman?
Here are a few of my favorite picks that I've curated...

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Tuesday, September 24, 2013

The Olive Branch

The olive branch has long been a symbol of peace and goodwill.
We've all heard the expression, "extending the olive branch," used when extending an offer of peace or reconciliation.

In Asti, we have many olive branches, many olive trees that give me a sense of peace when I look at them.
I never tire of their simple beauty.

Aren't they just magnificent?
They provide us with their wonderful fruit and if that's not enough, we then get to enjoy the most delicious oil too!

I like to cut the branches to bring inside...

...for casual autumn arrangements.

I think the olive branch, a symbol of peace, also represents fall in all its glory, don't you?

This year, I'm planning to make an olive branch wreath for late fall and into the holiday season like this one from Pottery Barn.
I'll let you know how it turns out!

I'm joining Kim at Savvy Southern Style for Wow Us Wednesday.
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Sunday, September 22, 2013

Delicious Autumn!

My most memorable autumn was in Tuscany, October 2010.
While visiting our son who was studying in Florence, we toured the countryside and I took this photo of the Chianti grape vines.
That autumn day was simply delicious!

Here's to a "delicious" autumn 2013!
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Friday, September 20, 2013

Our 2013 Grape Harvest

"We should all do what, in the long run, gives us joy even if it is only picking grapes..."  ~E.B. White

And so, it is with great joy that we picked our grapes one more year, marveling at their beauty and sweetness.

I can understand why artists attempt to capture their beauty, and why philosophers wax poetic about the grape, its harvest and its wine.
One of my favorite quotes is this one by Galileo:  
"The Sun, with all the planets revolving around it, and depending on it, can still ripen a bunch of grapes as though it had nothing else in the Universe to do."

And my favorite painting is this one which is hung over our mantel; a reminder of the wine country and its abundance.

Speaking of abundance, we have more grapes that we know what do do with.  Oh, how I wish I could send you all a cluster!

Hoping you have a fabulous autumn weekend!

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Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Fall In Love With Succulents For Fall

Let's not overlook the ever versatile, ever hardy and ever colorful succulent as a plant that can represent autumn in all its glory.

 From green to burgundy and orange in-between, succulents certainly have their share of fall colors going on.

I have to admit, I'm a little weary of traditional fall decor this year.
A few years ago, I created this very traditional harvest centerpiece. 
This year, I want something different.

That's where succulents can play a role.  They can be added to the proverbial "pumpkin meets fallen leaves" for a new fresh look, yet still say autumn.

Last week, I stopped in for a visit at the Restoration Hardware flagship store in Marin and took note of their succulents.

That's when it occurred to me just how versatile succulents are and how they can transition from season to season, each time fitting right in.

I do think they look their best during fall though.
That's when they can truly shine, especially with the addition of a few white pumpkins, or green gourds.

Just be sure when planting your succulents for fall to choose a variety of colors.

There are so many to choose from!

And with that wonderful warm autumn sunlight setting the succulents aglow, I know that I have found the perfect addition to my fall decor.

I'm joining Yvonne at StoneGable for Tutorials, Tips and Tidbits!

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Monday, September 16, 2013

Not Your Average Hardware Store!

 Garrett's Ace Hardware in Healdsburg is not your average hardware store!
Along with the nuts and bolts, light bulbs and paint is an entire area dedicated to home decor that rivals anything I've ever seen.

 Appealing to a wine country aesthetic and lifestyle, this store has everything that fits that look.

 Fabulous prints... tempt us bovine lovers!

 Natural linen and wicker furniture.

 Everything one would need to furnish a home in the wine country or elsewhere is right here!

I found lots of tablescape inspiration...

...and inspiring tables too.
How cool is this table with its iron base?

This very cool table was set with faux brown transferware.

A twig chandelier caught my eye.
Hmmm, where could I hang this?

They also carry a line of paper placemats, napkins and runners that I found rather exciting!

How fun to just roll out a paper runner for a rustic table or buffet.
No need to go to the dry cleaners!
(Horchow also carries these paper "linens" here.)

Along with all the trendy decor items and furniture, Garrett's also has...

Yes, my favorite thing to do after perusing the store for inspiration is to say hi to all the chickens!

And their resident cat, who I always look for to give a hug, but clearly doesn't want my affection!
Yes, Garrett Ace Hardware is not your average hardware store!

I'm joining Kim at Savvy Southern Style for Wow Us Wednesday.

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