Naturally Dyed Easter Eggs – Yay or Nay?

This is my first Easter as a Mommy, and one thing that we have been trying to do in our home since having our little one is to use more natural products, not only are they less harmful to the environment, but they do not have harsh chemicals which can cause a variety of reactions.

With Easter just around the corner, and a tradition of decorating eggs, I knew I wanted to do something that would still be fun by using products that we had around the house and would still make pretty coloured eggs.

Naturally dyed eggs using herbs, fruits and veggies will not only look great but provide a beautiful natural fragrance. I will admit that the perfectionist in me was a little worried at first because when using the traditional egg decorating kits that involve brightly coloured artificial dyes, you 9 times out of 10 times get the perfect even coated coloured egg; and how would these naturally dyed eggs look? Well, I was more than pleasantly surprised, they are so beautiful with their imperfections. With lines, ridges, and uneven colour, they are the complete opposite of artificially dyed eggs, but I think the beauty of each egg is how unique each one can be! So my vote is most definitely YAY!!

For my first attempt I used: Red Cabbage, Red Onions, Blueberries, and Turmeric.

You can also use products such as red wine, fruit juice, beets, or any fruits/veggies that appear to have high pigmentation. Vinegar is added to help the eggshells absorb the colour, and as a safe bet, use a ½ teaspoon of white vinegar for every ½ cup of liquid.

What I loved the most was that each egg turned out slightly unique, even in the same batch the pattern emerged differently.

NATURALLY DYED EASTER EGG RECIPES:

PURPLE EGGS:

  • Simmer 1 cup of BLUEBERRIES with 3 cups of WATER for 10 minutes
  • Mash the blueberries
  • Add in 4 teaspoons of VINEGAR
  • Transfer to container and steep HARD BOILED EGGS in the mix for at least one hour, best results are leaving overnight

YELLOW EGGS:

  • Mix 2 tablespoon of POWERED TURMERIC with 3 cups of BOILING WATER
  • Add in 4 teaspoons of VINEGAR
  • Transfer to container and steep HARD BOILED EGGS in the mix for at least two hours, best results are leaving overnight

BLUE EGGS:

  • Simmer ¾ cup of chopped RED CABBAGE with 4 cups of WATER for ten minutes
  • Add 6 teaspoons of VINEGAR
  • Boil EGGS in the cabbage mix for 15 minutes and remove from heat
  • Remove cabbage mix from the water
  • Transfer eggs and water to container, add new chopped cabbage to water
  • Steep EGGS for at least 6 hours, best results are leaving overnight

BROWN EGGS:

  • Simmer 2 RED ONION SKINS with 4 cups of WATER for ten minutes
  • Add 6 teaspoons of VINEGAR
  • Boil EGGS in the onion skins for 15 minutes and remove from heat
  • Transfer to container and steep EGGS for at least 6 hours, best results are leaving overnight

QUICK TIPS:

  • For a glossy finish add a little olive or coconut oil to the egg
  • If you want to add an almost wood grain pattern, cover the eggs in yellow onion skins, wrap with muslin material and steep in whichever colour you would like.
  • If you would like to have a leaf design on an egg, add a little water to a coriander leaf, place it on the egg, wrap with muslin material and steep in whichever colour you would like.

Have you tried dying eggs or material with natural food-based colours? How did they turn out? Which colours worked best for you?

Add pictures of your Easter Eggs in the comments below!

Before and After – Bedroom Project

To complete this space, we wanted to keep it light and add texture through fabrics, furniture, art, and accessories. With a minimal budget, it was important to keep things simple, but add small details to make bigger impressions.

Here is a before, during, and after of the bedroom project.

To keep this project on an affordable budget the:

  • Headboard: Cost $50
    • plywood covered in padding and material withadded buttons
  • 2 Small Art Pieces: Cost $25      
    • a family painting project, materials purchased from Michaels using 50% coupons
  • Hutch: Cost Free
    • Moved from a different space
  • Desk: Cost $80
    • Walmart purchase on sale
  • Rug: Cost $90
    • Home Depot Sale

What is your biggest struggle when trying to #decorate, #redesign, or #renovate a space on a #budget? Leave a comment with what you could use help with!

#kdesign #interiordesign #interiordecor #interiordecorating #diy #diyproject #bedroom #blog #blogger

Simplifying the Holidays – let’s get back to what really matters!

Queue the music people…

“It’s the most wonderful time of the year”

…..or is it? Personally, I LOVE the holiday season! It is my favourite time of the year, and lucky for me I found a guy that loves it just as much, or even more so than me!! From decorating our home, baking cookies, making Christmas cards and other holiday crafts, picking out gifts for our family and friends, and spending quality time with them and each other – and all the other little things in between – I just LOVE it! But when you love the holidays and everything it entails, it’s equally important to simplify things so you can enjoy all the magical moments and create beautiful memories.

Although I love this time of year, many people get stressed about the holidays from the financial burden it carries, trying to navigate Christmas visiting, holiday parties, Christmas baking, finding the “perfect gift” and the list goes on and on, it can all be very overwhelming.

What I have found helpful, is that doing less this time of year (I know, I know, that just doesn’t seem right…but hear me out!!) leaves more room for family, simple traditions, and the true spirit of Christmas.

One thing Jason and I have really started to value and that I hope we pass down to our little one is that you don’t do more to invite the spirit of Christmas into your life—you do less.

It often feels like if you are not filling the season with activities and creating memories of Pinterest worthy projects with your kids, you are not creating the kind of memories to keep for a lifetime – but it doesn’t have to be like that to capture the spirit of a simple Christmas. By incorporating some of the following options, it may help lower your stress level and increase your love for the holiday season.

Let’s Start with limiting your To-Do List:

Ask yourself:

  • “Will this add to the peace of the season or take away from it?”
  • “Will this create meaningful memories?”

If you answer no, move on to your next item!

Make a Plan:

With the holidays, no matter how much you try and scale back, you will always have your regular to-do’s (shopping for family or planning the food for a family gathering) – these things are inevitable! But putting a plan in place with a timeline for early preparation can reduce your stress and anxiety. I always aim to finish the bulk of my to-dos by November 30th.

Spend Less:

I think one of the biggest stressors during the holidays is the financial burden people feel it carries. Give yourself permission to spend less and do less! I always recommend putting a Christmas budget in place, we break ours down into different areas (Christmas Gifts, Decorations, Food etc.) pretty much any additional expenses you will have throughout the holidays – and most importantly, track your expenses! There is no point in putting a budget in place if you are not going to follow it, this will just leave you with a whopping credit card bill in January! By sticking with your budget, it may mean dialing down of your gift budget, and that is ok, it will leave you with more mental and emotionalcapacity to really soak in the season!

Get your family on board:

It is important that everyone is on the same page, and a good way to do this is by gathering the family and discussing what kind of Christmas you want to have. Talk about the feelings you want to experience and come up with ideas on ways to get there! It’s a great family activity to start the season, and it will help everyone understand and be more content with the vision of a simple Christmas.

Always come back to your “Why”:

Remember why you want this kind of holiday season for yourself and family especially when the hustle and bustle begin to creep in. Everyone’s reason for why may be different – mine is having more time and connecting with family and friends throughout the holiday season.

If you keep your goal of simplifying the holidays and having a slower more meaningful Christmas – you’ll find it!

Which ways do you find helpful when trying to simplify or enjoy special moments throughout the holidays? Let me know in the comments below.

I hope you all are having an amazing holiday season!

Katie xoxo

CREATING AFFORDABLE ARTWORK FOR YOUR HOME:

I love artwork throughout my home, it not only is a way to add extra colour throughout your space, but it provides you with the opportunity to showcase more of your personal style.

If you do inexpensive artwork correctly, it will not only look beautiful, but it will look thoughtful and meaningful. On the flip side, if done poorly, it can look like, well….inexpensive and not so great.

Some artwork ideas that are simple and affordable are:

Frame scrapbook paper or wallpaper samples.

Simply cut out pieces of the paper to the size of the frames you are using, place the paper in the frames, and voila….beautiful artwork!

Simple, affordable and an easy way to add colour to your space.

Use masking tape to create a geometric, abstract painting.

  • Paint a colourful random design on a canvas,
  • After the paint has dried, use masking tape to create a pattern you like,
  • Then paint over the whole thing in white.

Once the paint has dried, remove the tape and you will have an abstract art piece.

Wrap fabric around a rectangular or square piece of canvas, Styrofoam, and/or wood and staple it to the back.

·        Start by measuring the piece of canvas, Styrofoam and/or wood, and add about 1” on each side/edge.

·        Place the material on a flat surface with the print side towards the flat surface

·        Lay the canvas, Styrofoam or wood on the material, leaving the 1” extra material along the outside edging

·        Pull the material tight and begin to staple it to the back edging

·        (for corners, I like to create a fold, like you are wrapping a Christmas gift, it makes for a cleaner line)

Turn an old window into a picture frame.

If you like going to antique shops or garage sales, or even if you are creating a remodel on your own home, this is a neat way to showcase some of your favourite family pictures, or even landscape pictures you have taken from hikes or other adventures.

Depending on the window you are using, it may be as simple as adding your pictures. In other cases, you may need to paint or distress your window to give the desired look you prefer.

In both cases, these look great in any room!

Go to a local paint night with your friends.

This is a great excuse to make plans with your friends, relax, and create your very own masterpiece while enjoying a night out, and learning some new painting techniques.

This doesn’t cost very much (ranging from $25-50 depending), and sometimes you can luck into getting passes on Groupon!

You may discover your secret talent and become the next great artist! One of my girlfriends Terri is truly an amazing artist, and my first time doing a local paint night was one that she set up for us! Her work is pictured below:

And one of my favourites: Support local artist.

Yes, this may be on the costlier side of all the other options I have provided. But, not only are you supporting your community, you get to have amazing art pieces throughout your home.  I have a piece in my home completed by Jill Everson from Flatrock, NL (my hometown) and I absolutely love this piece, its the Marilyn painting pictured below!! You can check out more of her artwork on facebook: Paintings by Jill Everson (https://www.facebook.com/groups/paintingsbyjilleverson/)

Which of the above is your favourite?

Thank you for stopping by!

Much Love,

Katie, KDesign

Planning for Overnight Guests!

Some of my favourite childhood summer memories are the times I would spend at my Aunt Linda and Uncle Tom’s family cabin, it was a chance to catch up with family and friends while having an amazing trip filled with adventures.

Little did I know at the time, how much work goes into the planning for out of town guests, and I will tell you my Aunt Linda takes top prize for being the GREATEST hostess.

At times there must have been 15 plus people staying there, and everything seemed to run perfectly smooth. From daily activities planned, to amazing meals, and our favourite desserts (my Facebook and Instagram post show the Snack and a Half recipe, which is a family favourite). Besides these things, my Aunt Linda took the time to make everyone who stayed there feel special. I remember her giving us little diaries to write our adventures of the summer, having our favourite snacks on hand, and taking us for one on one dates.

Having guests stay at your house is a great time to entertain and have some fun, however, it can be intimidating when you start to overthink, and if you are like me, I tend to be a perfectionist when it comes to our house, and want it to be totally prepared so my guests feel comfortable, have a nice stay, and feel like they are at their home away from home.

As Jason and I moved to Toronto, much of our family and friends still reside in Newfoundland, while preparing for out of town guests I use what my Aunt Linda taught me throughout the years, and incorporated a few tips and tricks that I use for preparation and thought I would share them with you. If you have any, please feel free to share in the comments below!

Little touches can go a long way in making your guest space feel welcoming. Things such as a vase of flowers on the dresser, a welcome note for your guests saying how much you are looking forward to hosting them, a couple of their favourite chocolates on their pillow, even a bottle of wine and a small snack are nice!  None of these things takes a lot of time or money, but they let your guest know that you are excited about their time spent at your home.

Other ways to prepare for out of town guests are:

Provide a Place for Guests to Unpack.

It is great to have an area where guests can unpack their bags. Add a dresser to the room, and clear the closet so they are free for the guests to use. If you do not have areas like this, add a stool or small table where they can set their suitcase to have easy access to their items.  

 

Have a Light and a Nightstand by the Bed. 

Especially with first-time guests, they will not be familiar with the new space so ample lighting is great for them to be able to move comfortably around the room. Placing lamps on nightstand tables by the bed, make it so they can easily turn on in the middle of the night is a great added touch. Also, it’s a good idea to leave key small lighting on throughout the house at night, so guests can find their way around. I also like keeping a nightstand with a drawer by the bed, and keeping an extra phone charger in case they may have forgotten one, and it allows the guests to be able to keep their phones and other personal items close by at night.

 

Lots of Pillows and Extra Bedding. 

It is always nice to have extra pillows of different firmness available so guests can choose how many they want to use at their own liking. Also, having an extra cozy throw blanket at the end of the bed is also great if they get cold.  You should also tell your guests where you keep your extra linens so that they can grab them as they please.

 

Have Extra Toiletries Available. 

Most guests are going to forget a few things, or will not have the room to pack everything. One cute way to provide toiletry items guests may need such as lotion, shampoo, conditioner, sunscreen, and sample packs in a glass container or basket.

Have Towels and Washcloths Easily Available.

Have towels and washcloths visible and easily accessible for guests and let them know where they are located. I personally like to have them laid on their bed so they do not even have to ask for a towel and it makes everything easy.

 Provide Privacy.

Not everyone has a guest room, and if you do not, try giving them an area of the home that they will have some privacy, your guests will thank you for this. If you do have a guest’s room, make sure you have blinds or curtains to your windows so they can feel safe and secure.

 Kitchen Items.

I always like to ask guests what they would like during their stay, and if they want anything specific to eat or drink. Always have coffee, tea, milk, and water available, and any other staples you think your guests could need or want, and again, have them easily available. To make things easier when we are hosting guests, I plan out the meals we will be cooking before they come, it ensures you have all the food in the house and allows more time to spend with your guests.

Bathroom Items.

If you know me, you know I like a clean house, especially a clean bathroom. Have the shower and toilet super clean so that your guest feels comfortable using the facilities. If you have a separate bathroom for your guests, a good idea is to clear out your personal things so that they do not have to tiptoe around your items. Another thing is having extra toilet paper and a plunger available to avoid any embarrassing moments with your guests.

 

Living Room Items.

Having guests stay with you is also a chance to do that de-cluttering you have been avoiding. As you will be fitting more people into the living areas, get rid of all the stuff that doesn’t belong, or you no longer need. I like to have books, magazines, board games, and other entertainment available so they do not get bored during their downtime. Also, have some extra comfy pillows & throws laying around so everyone can feel cozy & comfortable.

 

And most importantly…Relax!

Yes, it can definitely be a little stressful at times having guests at your home, because you want them to have a good time and you may worry if they are comfortable. But keep in mind, guests that are staying overnight in your home, are most likely comfortable enough to tell you if they need anything. So, try not to stress, have a great time with your house guests & enjoy!

 

Is there anything you would add to this list? Everyone is different, so I would LOVE to hear what you do to prepare! Leave a comment below, find me on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/katie.parsons.5836) and Instagram (https://www.instagram.com/kmparsons1/)

Let’s get ORGANIZED!

What do you think of when you think of spring cleaning and organizing? Me, honestly, I kind of think, wouldn’t it be nice to be Cinderella!! Having those birds helping sweep the floors and other critters help with the chores! But in all honesty, the thought can be overwhelming, especially trying to balance a busy life while getting through a giant list of tasks!

What works for me, is focusing my energy where it will count….and hey, it never hurts to put on your favourite music, open the windows, and have a little dance party in between.  Our surroundings have an incredible impact on how we feel, and clutter can make us feel depressed –so spring cleaning and getting your space organized doesn’t just look good, it feels good!

Here are some organizing tips to help you get your space in order:

ENTRANCE WAY/CENTRAL AREA:

  • Have a central area to organize purses, keys, backpacks, mail, your wallet, etc. Always put it there.

BATHROOM:

  • Use plastic containers or a pretty basket to hold all of your bathroom paraphernalia, and place under the counter and bring it out when you need it, this will keep it out of sight when not in use.
  • Shower caddies are essential when organizing the shower space, they help keep the shampoos, conditioners, face scrubs and speciality in-shower treatments from taking over the whole space.
  • Use drawer organizers for makeup, jewellery, ponytail holders, and other loose items.

CLOSET:

  • First things first, if you haven’t worn it in a year, donate it.
    • Use the hanger trick – when placing clothes in your closet for the season put the hangers in “backwards” then when you wear something, place it back the regular way, and at the end of the season, whichever clothes are left “backwards” donate!
    • Here is a link to show you how to: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=da4kM95f9hI
  • Closet Laundry System:
    • Use colour separate baskets and one for dry cleaning – this will not only save you time from sorting, but you will know when you have enough for a full load.
  • Sorting Clothes:
    • Sort by season, and if you only have a small space; only keep the present season in your closet and try using under-bed storage containers for out of season clothing.
    • Put your clothes in categories that work for you. Color, formality, type or office wear are good places to start. (This saves time putting outfits together, and can save money from re-purchasing items you may have forgotten about.)
    • Use a shoe rack. Rotate your shoes like you do with your clothes; why bury all of your cute sandals with winter boots?
  • If you have space, try using hooks and pegboard on any closet wall space to hang purses, jackets, and accessories.

KITCHEN:

My number one rule for organizing the kitchen: Only keep things on the counter you use often.

  • Use a lazy-susan in the back of deep cupboards, so you never forget what is hiding back there!
  • Organize Tupperware in a lower drawer rather than a shelf, that way you can see all the containers, and hopefully be able to find a matching lid! If not, toss those ones!
  • Keep your fridge clean. After grocery shopping, rotate older food into the front so it’s used first.
  • Keep your drawers organized including the junk drawer that we all have; go through it monthly and get rid of any items you are not using.
  • Organize your kitchen cabinets into categories; some ideas:
Item Location
Utensil Drawer near the dishwasher
Pots and Pans near the stove
Kids Plates lower shelf (so they can have access)

 

KID’S ROOMS:

  • Create storage (floating shelves, shelving units, wall planters etc.) to store stuffed animals, dolls, action figures, organize their books or other special items they have.
  • In a small space that doesn’t allow for extra storage, use a captain’s bed. This contains storage underneath which can be used for clothes or any other storage item.
  • Display their school artwork. Instead of having all of those papers in a drawer or container, use poster putty and display his/her favourite on one wall, creating a gallery style.
  • Use a two-compartment hamper so they can organize light clothes from dark clothes; make it fun by adding a hoop over the laundry basket for slam-dunking dirty clothes.

 

 

OTHER WAYS TO ORGANIZE YOUR HOME:

  • Use a plastic caddy to store cleaning supplies in and bring it from room to room.
  • Use a plastic laundry basket for quick pick up and transport of items to their proper homes each evening.
  • Each night before going to bed, spend 15 minutes de-cluttering and putting things back in their place. If you have children, make a game out of it and see who can pick up the most things in the shortest amount of time.
  • Make sure everything in your house has a home, and follow these rules:
    • If you take it out, put it back!
    • If you open it, close it!
    • If you throw it down, pick it up!
    • If you make a mess, clean it up!

And most importantly…Don’t leave things ’till later. Procrastination is the number one cause of clutter and mess.

I hope you enjoy the tips I shared, and please feel free to leave what works best for organizing your own home!

Lots of Love,

Katie

 

 

REFERENCES – IMAGES:

Figure 1: Front Entrance; Retrieved from: (http://observatoriosancalixto.com/entry-organizer-bench-decor/)

Figure 2: Bathroom – Vanity; Retrieved from: (http://www.ebizbydesign.com/10035/ideas/catchy-ideas-bathroom-cabinet-organizers-organize-bathroom-cabinets-cabinet-organize-bathroom-cabinets/)

Figure 3: Bathroom – Drawers; Retrieved from: (https://thesummeryumbrella.com/dollar-store-bathroom-drawer-organization/)

Figure 4: Bathroom – Cabby; Retrieved from: (https://www.signaturehardware.com/teak-shower-caddy-with-removable-soap-dish.html)

Figure 5: Kitchen – Lazy Susan; Retrieved from: (http://whilehome.com/blog/a-simple-but-remarkable-house-from-fabre-demarien/)

Figure 6: Kitchen – Tupperware; Retrieved from: (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t8d3g_hlj7I)

Figure 7: Kids Room – Storage; Retrieved from: (http://www.buscadores.info/kids-room-storage-solutions/kids-room-kids-room-storage-ideas-item-for-decor-kids-room-kids-room-storage-solutions/)

Figure 7: Kids Room – Artwork; Retrieved from: (https://www.pinterest.ca/pin/264727284324548778/?lp=true)

My Outside Space – Before and After:

Jason and I currently live in a condo, and our outdoor living space is a small concrete patio. By incorporating the tips that I provided in my previous blog post titled “Creating the Perfect Outdoor Space” which outlined how dimension, natural elements, comfort, ambience, and personal touches combined can create your perfect outdoor space; we have created a space that provides us with a sanctuary feel to escape the busy city life.

In my outside patio area, I incorporated dimension by creating a sitting area and adding vertical height differences with the planter stand as well as the flowerpot shelving unit.

Keeping with a nature feel for my outside space, I included various plants, a hollowed-out tree stump, which will be used as a planter, a mini fire feature, and I kept the color scheme all natural (white, grey, black).

The shelving unit currently holds some potted plants, various accent pieces, and the bottom shelf is left available for a little herb garden which we will complete when the weather is suitable for planting.

As our patio is small, it will not be used as an entertainment space, but more so as a space for Jason and I to enjoy our morning coffee, eat an occasional meal, and enjoy a glass (or two) of wine. Jason is in LOVE with this bistro set, and there was no changing his mind on having this in the space so everything had to work around that. I added the rug and included a throw to create a feeling of warmth and comfort, and with the combination of the natural elements, the asymmetrical balance creates unity and harmony throughout.

To create a sense of ambience in my space, I have included battery operated candles, as well as a lantern, and a mini fire feature. With the addition of a cozy throw and a rug, it to provided warmth to the space; while the furniture placement and natural elements create an overall sense of tranquillity.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Jason and I have created a shadow box craft, which includes rocks and twigs that we have collected from various hikes and places we have visited. This adds a personal touch to the space, while keeping with the au natural theme.

By following simple steps of incorporating elements of dimension, natural environment, comfort, ambience and personal touches, I reached the goal of creating an outside space that works for us.

 

I hope you all enjoyed the post and I would love to hear what you enjoy most about your outside space!

Lots of Love,

Katie

 

Creating the Perfect Outdoor Space!

With summer on the horizon, you should be thinking about getting your outdoor spaces ready for the fun times that are certain to be shared. Who doesn’t enjoy spending time on your patio? Whether it’s staring your morning outside with a cup of coffee and a book, enjoying a dinner party with friends, or enjoying a sunny brunch outside – mimosas anyone (if you have space)?? So, I wanted to share some tips on How to Create the Perfect Outdoor Space.

Figure 1: Outdoor Patio Space

Figure 2: Dimension

The first thing you want to look at is creating DIMENSION:

By creating dimension to your space, it not only provides a visually appealing element which draws your eye to various aspects, it also allows the space to have character without looking flat or boring while making the space feel whole.

 

Dimension can be added by different colours, textures, height variations etc. For example, a single chair does not have a lot of dimensions, however, with the addition of a different colour pillow or a throw, it adds dimension to the chair, creating more interest.

 

Figure 3: Natural Elements

Next, keep your space feeling NATURAL:

This will keep your space fresh, and provide a feeling of happiness. Incorporate natural elements through wood finishes, planters, flowers (this can be a full garden scale to low maintenance plants). If you have space, try adding a small water or fire feature, this not only adds to the natural environment you are creating but can provide a sense of relaxation while listening to the crackling fire or a water feature.

 

 

Now, take the time to think about what will make the space most COMFORTABLE for you.

First, consider what you’d primarily like to use your outdoor space for. Being comfortable in a space is a top priority for most, and this is created based on personal preference. You may want to think about adding a sunshade, cushions on your furniture, a cozy rug, or adding a privacy wall.

Examples:

  • Entertainment Space:
    • If you plan on doing a lot of entertaining, table-height chairs will be a must, and in a smaller sized space, consider using folding chairs, as the can be easily stored when not in use.
  • Relaxation Space:
    • If the space will be primarily for relaxation, try creating a reading nook or lounge area, I recommend using thick, weather resistant pillows, that not only look great but are super comfortable. This will be the perfect spot for an afternoon nap or reading the newspaper.

Figure 4: Comfort

 

CREATING AMBIENCE is next.

Figure 5: Ambience

You can transform your space in the later hours of the day, by incorporating different types of lighting, as this adds to the overall ambience of the space. Use candles, lanterns, or string lights to create a relaxing environment for those perfect summer nights.

Other examples to help create ambience:

  • Include soft textures such as a cozy blanket, pillows, or a rug, this creates a sense of tranquillity and warmth, especially when paired with comfortable pieces of furniture.
  • Grouping furniture pieces can add warmth to a space.
  • Earth tone colour choices give a space a sense of relaxation and calmness.

The next step to further understand how to create ambience in a space is to become aware of your surroundings. It is important to recognize how a space works best for you and what you find comfortable. As each person is different, a relaxing space may have a very different outcome for each individual.

 

Through DIMENSION, NATURAL ELEMENTS, COMFORT, and AMBIENCE, you almost have your perfect outside space created. But, to really make your space extra special, it is all about the SMALL PERSONAL TOUCHES.

 

Figure 6: Personal Touches

 

 

 

 

 

 

A key ingredient in decorating an outdoor space is that it reflects your personal style. Add special personal touches such as your favourite wind chimes, vases, a homemade sculpture or art piece – these elements make your space complete.

 

Step back, review your space, and decide what personal touches you would like to add!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And just like that, you have your outdoor patio space created!

Stay tuned, I will have my next blog post on SUNDAY, APRIL 15, 2018 to show the before and after of my outdoor patio space, and how I created it following the tips listed above.

If you have any questions or comments, I would love to hear from you!

Lots of Love,

Katie

 

 

References: Images

Figure 1: Outdoor Patio Space: (Rose Barraza & Sara Tardiff, EDesign, August 2017) Retrieved from: https://www.elledecor.com/design-decorate/trends/g9142414/small-patio-ideas/?slide=12

Figure 2: Dimension: Retrieved from: (https://www.pinterest.ca/pin/337981147017277233/, ND)

Figure 3: Natural Elements: Retrieved from: (http://www.kitchentoday.net/small-patio-design-ideas/, ND)

Figure 4: Comfort: Retrieved from: (https://www.pinterest.ca/kristywicks1/exteriors-outdoor-spaces/?lp=true, ND)

Figure 5: Ambience: Retrieved from: (https://www.pinterest.ca/pin/ASH9E9q-cARoMy1IPUfEfizi6p1XgscP6CN00MIx5yd0k5Gb_yN32h0/, ND)

Figure 6: Personal Touches: Retrieved from: (https://www.pinterest.ca/pin/AWDQaZgpV9l4YEW759MeoyQ4btrA5Qmi-8GAebY_jAWAuhenL-9CRlM/, ND)

Creating a Table Setting on a Budget

One thing I love, especially while celebrating a holiday, is having a beautiful table setting. But before all the fun, some planning needs to begin, I always find it best to start with choosing a colour and/or theme to use, and then go from there. Sometimes, this can be incorporated into the centrepiece, the tablecloth, a napkin, or even a serving platter, which can then set the mood.

Let’s start the planning of creating a table setting on a budget:

 The table covering:

  • This is a place to get creative if it inspires and complements the colour palette.
  • You can use a bed sheet or coverings, or any extra material which you can add a hem.

 Choose the type of China you want to use:

  • White china makes any food look good because it will not conflict with food colours
  • Pattern pieces can add colour and texture to your table, which provides a sense of warmth, and you can always mix-and-match similar pieces to create a more dynamic feel.

Have extra bowls on hand

  • They always come in handy, whether serving a side soup or salad, use as condiment holders, side serving dishes, chip bowls etc.

Large wine glasses and large glass mugs are a must for an informal dining experience

  • Anything can be served in them, and you do not have to worry about having different types of glasses for each serving drink.

How to add colour to the table:

  • Napkins: you can place two napkins in different colours or patterns in one ring. To cut on costs, you can purchase a white set of cloth napkins, and then find a heavier paper napkin to add the pop of colour.
  • Flowers: You can never go wrong with fresh flowers, but avoid using flowers too big for the setting, you want to be able to see and communicate with your guests and not have to talk over flowers.
  • Place seat holders: Having pre-arranged seating, can seem formal, but, by adding these, it gives you the opportunity to add more colour, or add an elegant touch to an informal setting.

Now that you have decided on all the elements you want to incorporate in your table setting, it is time to put them all together. At this point, you may want to add a little something extra or remove some items if the setting seems cluttered. This should be fun, and use your eye for design to make sure you have created your vision.

My Latest Table Setting:

As we have just celebrated Easter Sunday, I wanted to share the table setting I used for the holiday.

My table setting budget was $60 – now, let’s get to work:

First, my colour scheme was incorporated by side paper plates (yes, I said paper plates), they were used to add colour to the table. These are heavy-duty paper plates from Winners, costing $4.50 for 12. This is a cheaper alternative to purchasing side plates, and these were used to serve dessert.

Keeping with the colour theme, my table placeholders were made from the eggs that Jason and I decorated together. When completing projects like this, use it as a time to get creative, try painting a design, or using lace. The eggs we decorated were sitting in egg cups purchased from Winners ($8.99).

NOTE: A great place to purchase egg decorating materials is Michaels (check for a 50% off coupon), the Dollar Store, Walmart or any arts and crafts store. 

I purchased jewellery from Ardennes ($5), and have many left over for future projects, this not only added an elegant touch to the eggs but created a statement, additionally spending $10 for extra egg decorating materials from the Dollar Store and Shoppers.

When working with a budget, my first stop is always Winners to find a great centrepiece. This is honestly my favourite store, and you can find great deals, and something unique. But thankfully for me, this year Jason purchased a beautiful flower arrangement.

When using flowers for a centrepiece, especially when it is for a one-time event, always check the clearance section as this can have flowers marked down, up to 50% off. This gives you the opportunity to mix and match some of your favourites!!

I purchased a light blue table runner (Winners: $19.99), and white napkins (Winners: $9.99) with silver napkin rings, which I covered in a rose gold beaded ribbon (Dollar store: $1.50) to tie all the colours together.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Using from my home:

  • Charger Plates – silver in colour (can be purchased from any home accessory store, starting at $1.99)
  • Dinner Plates – white in colour
  • Wine Glasses – silver steamed
  • Drinking Glasses
  • Cutlery – silver in colour

With a grand total of $59.97, I stayed within Budget, and my Easter Table Setting was completed!!

Keep in mind, after the holidays, Easter materials will be significantly marked down, this is a great time to purchase items for next year’s table setting, to save even more!

I hope I have provided you with some tips that you can continue to carry forward for your next table setting!

Please leave any questions in the comment section below, as well, share pictures of your beautifully decorated table settings!

Katie xo