Wednesday, November 30, 2016

MY 15 FAVORITES- HOLIDAY WISH LIST

Today we've bumped our monthly series a up few days early, and it's super sized!  Welcome to My *15* Favorites today!  Pam from Simple Details, Lisa from Shine Your Light, Kris from Driven by Decor and I are all so excited to share our holiday wish lists with you today.  We had so many good things we couldn't stop at just 5!

We're also so happy to welcome Courtney from A Thoughtful Place as our guest host today.  Courtney can do it all... she's the perfect hostess, does gorgeous fashion posts as well as home, and she and her family have recently moved into a new-to-them home where they made quick work of updating it beautifully to suit their family.  Her "Home Sweet Home" tree that she decorated this year was so creative, and I thought this was such a smart idea for busy on the go families, too!  I was privileged to meet Courtney in person a few years ago and she's even sweeter in real life than she seems on her blog.  Be sure to stop buy and get to know her today!


The wish list that I'm sharing with you today is a combination of things I have and love and think you would enjoy too, along with some things that really are on my own personal wish list!  It was hard for me to not fill up the whole list with just home items, but I narrowed my choices down to 5 for the home, 5 personal (for women), and 5 miscellaneous/kids.




I have the largest one on my Christmas list, but I just *might* have already placed an order for the other two sizes... they would look so cute grouped together on the kitchen counter.
Instant Pot Pressure Cooker- Everything old is new again, right??  ;)  A perfectly cooked dinner in a matter of minutes (and currently at an awesome price!)?  Yes please!
(Edited:  The price changed since I published this, but keep an eye out for another sale!  Or, this one is more reasonable with just one less feature.)
Agate Slice Napkin Rings- A bit of a splurge, but oh, so pretty!
Kate Spade Tumbler-  add a vinyl monogram for extra cuteness!
Marble Tray - ROUND or RECTANGLE-  I've got my eye on a marble tray to use on some of my darker wood surfaces, it would stand out so nicely! 



Monogrammed Patterned Bag (this one shown)-  I LOVE my Barrington tote bag and load it up with just about everything imaginable.  While I use it for a purse as well as tote, I'd like to have one this size too that's slightly smaller and has a zipper closure.  They are available in just about every color combo and pattern imaginable, plus a monogram.  Yay!
Personalized Leather Tassel Key Fob- No explanation needed... bet you can't guess what color I'd get!
Kate Spade Watch- I've had my eye on this watch for a long time, and this is the best price I've seen.  Maybe Santa will read my post today.  :)  I do have a nice Michael Kors watch, but it tends to be a bit heavy and this Kate Spade is nice and slim.
Jogger-style PJ Pants- Hands down, these are my favorite pajama pants.  They're light weight so not too hot, and SUPER soft.  
Acrylic Monogram Necklace- The large size with gold chain in tortoise shell would be my personal choice, but there are tons of color and size options available.  




Ticket to Ride-  I meant to get this game last year but never did, but it will be under our tree for sure this year!  I've seen so many friends recommend it, and I think it will be a good family game option.  We love Settlers of Catan which is in the same family of games, so it should be a winner!
Jesus Storybook Bible- Even though my kids are older, I recently purchased this book and it's so sweet.  I'm still going to read through it with them, but it would be a treasure for young preschoolers and children.  The illustrations are vivid and kid friendly and the "story" is very readable and easy to understand.  
FlashFlight LED Flying Disc-  This was on my gift guide last year, but I couldn't help include it again.  One of our all time favorite outdoor toys!
Cordless Glue Gun- When my friend and I were making all of the snowmen a few weeks ago, she had one of these and I thought "Why don't I have one of those?"  The reviews are a little mixed, but she loves hers and the price is good enough that it's worth trying.  One thing she did mention is that the gun had to be clicked into the base for it to be "ON", so it's technically "OFF" when you release it to use it, but it stays heated long enough that that hasn't been an issue for her- just click it back into the base each time you put it down.  
Hammock- On my husband's wish list (and I have a feeling the whole family will enjoy it!).




What's at the top of your wish list this year?  Be sure to head over to Simple Details, Shine Your LightDriven by Decor, and A Thoughtful Place to check out their holiday gift picks, too!


Missed any previous My 5 Favorites posts? Catch up here!

My 5 Favorite Tips for Organizing Your Home
My 5 Favorite Home Decor Accessories
My 5 Favorite Ways to Decorate for Spring
My 5 Favorite Pillows
My 5 Favorite Ways to Decorate an Outdoor Space
My 5 Favorite Fabrics
My 5 Favorite DIY Projects
My 5 Favorite Ways to Use Mixed Metals
My 5 Favorite DIY Artwork Projects
My 5 Favorite Tabletop Accessories
My 5 Favorite Recipes for the Holidays




*Affiliate links used for your shopping convenience.  I may earn a small commission through these links at no extra cost to you.  Thanks for supporting Dimples and Tangles to keep great content coming!


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Tuesday, November 29, 2016

HOW TO MAKE A STYROFOAM RING SNOWMAN AND CHURCH CHRISTMAS BANQUET TABLE DECORATIONS


Hey friends!  I hope you all had a nice holiday weekend.  Did you get all of your Christmas shopping done?  In store or online?  I actually didn't do too much shopping, I was too busy decorating for Christmas and watching the new Gilmore Girls! (What did you think?  As much as I love GG I gave it about a 7 out of 10... but it was so good to see everyone back together again!)  I plan to wrap up my decorating in the next few days and then I need to get on those Christmas lists!

I help coordinate the decorations for the ladies events at our church, and we're usually trying to decorate a LOT of tables on a tiny budget.  So, I always like to share what we come up with because I know some of you might need event decoration ideas too!

A few weeks ago we had our Christmas event, and I had the challenge of coming up with decor for around 60 tables for $100 or less.  We wanted to keep things simple yet festive, and were only decorating tables in our Fellowship Hall where people would be eating before they moved into the auditorium for the program.


(Total side note... isn't that cute?  Our speaker always sets up a shopping area for the ladies that evening.  She does multiple events each Christmas season and has a store open year round in Tulsa called The Plaid Pineapple (so cute!).  This is her ministry- the proceeds of everything she sells go to support various mission endeavors.  She always says "Maybe I can't move to Africa right now to tell people about Jesus, but I can sell a pillow!"  I love that!  Anyway, stop by her store if you're ever in Tulsa, OR they have on online shop, too!  I just bought this bowl over the weekend and can't wait for it to arrive!)


OK, back to our table decorations!  I always begin by browsing Pinterest for basic ideas, and then adapt them for our needs and budget.  While searching, I came across this darling snowman.  While it was way too fancy for the direction that I was headed with our decor, I knew it could be modified to fit our plan better.  I also saw this cute pin, and once again, while too fancy to do for our large event, I picked up on the thought of using wrapped gifts for centerpieces.

Once I present the plan to our team, they are all so fabulous about pitching in, gathering up what we need, and making it happen.  I took care of gathering what we needed for the snowmen, and everyone else helped collect empty boxes for a few weeks.  We planned on about 3 boxes per table, so we needed close to 200!  We also asked people to donate unwanted gift wrap in the color scheme we wanted (traditional Christmas colors)-who doesn't have a roll or two to get rid of?

We all met together for a few hours one evening, and while a friend and I assembled the snowmen, everyone else wrapped all of the empty boxes.  Lots of friends make big jobs better, right?  I have a sweet friend on the team who is always willing to raid her yard and trim evergreen branches for us to be able to use fresh greenery, so we tucked sprigs here and there around the gifts, too.  Here's what the space looked like the night of the event.


We tucked a few gifts around the snowmen on their tables, too.  And FYI, empty oatmeal canisters make great containers to wrap, too!


We weren't using the stage in this room, but had some extra large boxes so we wrapped those too and used them to fill in the stage a bit.



As the event was closing we announced that the wrapped empty boxes were free to take, and we were all shocked at how fast they flew out the door!

So, with all of the wrapped gift boxes being basically free, the only real expense was the supplies for the snowmen.  Since we were on such a tight budget I pieced them together as economically as I could, rather than buying everything in one trip to the craft store, which you could definitely do.  I made multiple trips to Hobby Lobby over a few weeks to buy the larger styrofoam rings (let's face it, I was there anyway!), using my 40% off coupon each time (that $2 savings times 8 added up!).

I was able to find the smaller styrofoam rings at Dollar Tree, a few dollars cheaper than the craft store, which again really added up when we were making multiples of these.  The only problem was that they were green!  So, I experimented on one by using white spray paint (with primer in it).  It worked just fine (sometimes spraying styrofoam is hit or miss)!


Here's how to make your own snowman:


Supplies needed:
1 small and 1 large styrofoam ring (mine are about 13" and 10")
wooden skewers
hot glue
12x18 sheet of black fun foam
floral foam
basket, clay pot, or other container for base
shredded paper filler or small ornaments
small rocks for weight if desired
ribbon and scarf for embellishment



To begin, I trimmed the wooden skewers down.  The pieces used to connect the head to the body will need to be about 2" long.  The length of the pieces to secure the snowman into the styrofoam base will vary depending on your container, just make sure it it long enough to insert about 1" into the bottom of the snowman and several inches to secure it to the base foam.  I used 2 short pieces and 3 longer per snowman.


First, connect the smaller ring to the larger one with the short skewers.  Apply a drop of hot glue to the end of a short skewer piece, then insert it into the outside center of the smaller ring (this will be the bottom of the head).  Then, apply more glue to the other end of the skewer and gently attach it to the outside center of the larger ring, being careful not to push the other end through the other side of the smaller ring.  I used two skewers close together just to provide a little more strength and stability.  Then, repeat the process with the skewers, this time using the longer ones.  You'll want the bottom of the large ring to rest along the top edge of your base container, so judge your skewer length accordingly.  I used three skewers here to keep everything in place well.


Prepare the base of the snowman.  Since we were on a very tight budget, I found a variety of florist woven baskets from the thrift store that were all the same size, then spray painted them all black for uniformity.  You could use any type of container that you'd like... a flower pot, small urn, etc.


Trim a styrofoam brick so it fits tightly in the container (you'll want to have to force it in slightly).  I put a few drops of hot glue on the corners just before I dropped the foam in so it would be more secure.  If your base if very lightweight, you might want to add some pea gravel or small rocks around the foam to make it slightly heavier to avoid the snowman tipping over when you're finished.



Now, just make him cute!  I used a sheet of fun foam and folded it in half, then cut side pieces out to make it into the shape of a top hat (the folded side is the top of the hat).  Use hot glue to close the edges of the hat, leaving the bottom edge open to slip over the snowman's head.  Add ribbon, a sprig of greenery, etc. on the hat if desired.


For the event at the church, we used 8 snowmen and scattered them throughout about 60 tables.  We didn't need one on every table, but one every once in a while was enough to look cute.  Several ladies brought their own plaid or Christmas colored scarves to wrap around the snowmen's necks, so we didn't have any expense there.


When I used the snowmen on my Christmas tablescape I wanted their scarves to match, so I bought about 1/3 yard of fleece fabric then split that into 2 scarves.  It was the perfect length and after cutting the ends to make a fringe they turned out cute!


Finish it off by filling the container with something to cover the foam.  For our event we just used shredded colored paper from Dollar Tree, but on my table I used mini ornaments in colors that complemented the table.  Fresh greenery sprigs would look great too, cotton balls for "snow"... the options are limitless!

If you've helped with table decorations for large events, I'd love to hear what you've done in the past too.  We're always looking for new ideas for the next event!



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Wednesday, November 23, 2016

HAPPY THANKSGIVING!


I hope you all have a blessed holiday, and are able to celebrate with friends and loved ones.  I'm thankful for each and every one of you, and am thrilled that we get to share this little corner of the internet together!



"Let us come before His presence with thanksgiving,
let us shout joyfully to Him with psalms.
For the Lord is a great God
and a great King above all gods."
Psalm 95:2-3 (NASB)



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Tuesday, November 22, 2016

DIY 30 MINUTE NO SEW TREE SKIRT


When I decided to use a new color scheme for my Christmas tree this year, I knew I was going to have to find a different tree skirt than I've used in the past.  Not finding what I had in mind in stores, I browsed Pinterest for inspiration to make my own.  As soon I I spotted this skirt  (no longer available to purchase) I knew I found a winner, and even more so when I knew it could be done quickly and with no sewing involved!

(This post contains affiliate links at no extra cost to you.)

I used the design as inspiration for my own, but selected colors that complemented my tree.  The process could not have been easier.  If you can cut and glue, you can make a tree skirt!  I used extra wide felt from fabric.com so I could get the whole skirt made in just one piece.  The beauty of felt is that it has a nice weight and does not fray at all, so cut edges stay clean, and it's available in just about any color imaginable.

For this project, I used felt by the yard that is 72" wide.  I got 2 yards of  Peacock Blue
for my main color, so that the material would be large enough and I wouldn't have to worry about piecing anything together.  After determining the size that I wanted my skirt to be (I wanted about a 60" diameter, so it would come out about 30" from the center on each side of the tree), I used some super high-tech tools (a sting and piece of chalk) to mark out a circle.  To trace a perfect circle, I cut the sting a few inches longer than my 30" radius, tied one end to the chalk and pinned the other end in what would be the center of the circle, making sure that my chalk line would stay on the fabric all the way around.


After tracing the circle and cutting it out, I traced a small circle right around the center point and cut a slit opening down one side.  (By the way, that fold crease came right out when I hovered a steamy iron just above it.)



At this point I did a quick check under the tree just to make sure the size was what I wanted.


I used a plastic cup to trace the size of polka dots I wanted, and was able to cut through 2 layers nicely at once to make the process go a bit faster.  Rainbow Red is the perfect Christmas red, and I also cut the same size circles out of Apple Green for the scalloped green.


To assemble the pieces, I simply used Fabri-Tac glue to attach the polka dots on top.  After cutting the green circles in half, I glued them underneath the edge to form the scalloped border.


And... done in about 30 minutes!  I didn't feel it necessary to use any type of closure on the skirt seam, but you could glue some ribbon pieces down the sides if you'd like to tie the seam closed.


I think this whimsical pop of bold color is just what my jewel toned tree needed to finish it off.


What do you typically use for a skirt?  For years I used a plaid fabric shower curtain wrapped around the bottom, and in recent years have used faux sheepskins layered around the base.  Have you seen the new "tree collars" that eliminate the need for a skirt?  I love that there are so many chances to be creative when trimming the tree, even with the finishing touch of the tree skirt!



Fabric.com provided materials for this project, but all project ideas and instructions are mine.  They have been one of my go-to fabric sources for years, the selection is incredible!  




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Friday, November 18, 2016

COLORFUL SNOWMAN CHRISTMAS TABLESCAPE



This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Hobby Lobby. The opinions and text are all mine.


I am thrilled today to have been challenged to create a Christmas tablescape with products from one of my favorite stores- Hobby Lobby- and to do it for less than $100 (it's a cinch with their great sales!). You all know that I love putting tables together staying true to my colorful style and keeping everything simple. Even if there are a lot of layers and parts, nothing is difficult and is usually easy to replicate with what you might have on hand.


I wanted to do a snowman theme and had an element or two in mind that I wanted to include on my table, so I headed to Hobby Lobby in search of things to inspire me to fill in the rest of the table. I knew I needed something to anchor the center, as well as layers for the table and accents for the place settings.

The first thing I spotted in the seasonal Christmas merchandise was a red and white striped runner... sold! I was thrilled to find this pattern, I know I'll use it for so many other gatherings and holidays throughout the year. And, as faithful Hobby Lobby shoppers know, most Christmas items are 50% off this time of year, so it was a bargain at $10. And now that I think about it, I think I need one more for my other table before they're gone!

Next, I started browsing the selection of Christmas crafts. I've lightly glanced over these crafts in the past, but this time I was considering everything and how it might work on my table, and let me tell you I was pleasantly surprised at all of the darling craft options there were! Before I went to shop I had been mulling around making some snowmen napkin rings with pom poms for the body, but then I saw a kit right in front of me, with everything I needed to make just what I had in mind! And for $3 at half price, I don't think I could have rounded up all of the individual parts for such a good deal. This kit wasn't specifically for napkin rings, just the snowmen, so after thinking for a minute about my options for a ring, I chose some peppermint striped chenille stems to shape into the ring (does anyone else still call them pipe cleaners? I do!).

Even though the snowman kit included the pom poms I needed, I picked up a few more white pom poms in a variety of sizes to sprinkle on the table to look like little snowballs.

Still in search of a centerpiece, I continued browsing the Christmas crafts, and came across some paper mache type cone shaped trees ($5 each sale price). Perfect! I chose 3 large ones to group in the center, and found some darling pom pom trim garland to accent them, as well as more small rainbow colored pom poms.


I wanted to paint the cone trees, but had never done that before on this type of material and wasn't sure if it would take spray paint well or not. So, I experimented on one of them, and it worked perfectly! Just one coat covered them nicely (I used Rustoleum Gloss Spray Enamel in Meadow Green and Maui Blue). With just a few drops of hot glue here and there, I attached the pom pom garland spiraled around the cone, then attached the colored pom poms in between the rows. (Sorry for the bad night time photo, this time change is killing me for project photos!)



The snowmen for the napkin rings were super easy to make with the step by step instructions included in the package. Basically, you just assemble all the pieces. I did alter them just a bit by using a black chenille stem for the hat rather than the green ones that were enclosed in the kit. These would be so fun for kids to make and feel a bit of ownership in doing their part to decorate the table.


To finish them off, I used two of the peppermint chenille stems, wrapped them tightly around a bottle that was about napkin ring size, and twisted them closed. After trimming the ends, I used hot glue to attach the snowmen to cover the twisted ends of the ring.



In addition to the trees, I wanted to use these snowmen that I had just made on the table as well. All of these supplies can be found at Hobby Lobby as well, and I'm going to tell you more about these soon. But for now, they were just right to complete the centerpiece.



I'm using jewel tones in the rest of my Christmas decor this year, so I used those colors on my table as well. I have a set of plastic plate chargers that I spray paint to work with various tablescapes, and I brought some turquoise in with those. I added a mix of jewel tone mini ornaments in the base of the baskets that hold the big snowmen.


I usually get a question about the logistics of using large centerpieces. The snowmen are actually easy to see through and/or around, but I would relocate them as the meal is served to ease the conversation. I like to "wow" my guests and family when I use larger pieces, but I always make sure they can easily and quickly be removed if they are in the way during the meal.


I used simple place cards made with card stock and a strip of ribbon glued on, and added a large red jingle bell beside them to tie in with the table runner.


So what do you think? I believe my total came in at around $60, and did you notice that I didn't use any fresh flowers? So, all of this is re-usable and can stay out throughout the season (and the snowmen even after Christmas!) or switched around to other holiday vignettes around the house- and I'm definitely pulling the striped runner back out for Valentine's Day and patriotic holidays!


I hope you're encouraged to think outside the box a little bit for your Christmas decor this year and create something new! Even just adding one or two new little details in with what you might already have can help freshen up the old, and Hobby Lobby is the perfect place to get your creative juices flowing. Just remember... spray paint and glue guns are your friends! :)




This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Hobby Lobby. The opinions and text are all mine.  It's no secret that Hobby Lobby is a company that I fully support, promote, and have shopped at since I was a little girl, so it was my privilege to partner with them for this post today. Thank you for supporting companies that help keep fresh content coming at Dimples and Tangles!






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Thursday, November 17, 2016

BETTER HOMES AND GARDENS STYLEMAKER EVENT


Several weeks ago I attended the Better Homes and Gardens Stylemaker Event held in New York City.  This is an annual event that 75 home and food bloggers along with other creatives are invited to attend.   I thought I'd take you through the event and give you a little peek into our time spent with the BHG team.  The BHG team did a phenomenal job of taking care of and even spoiling us for the day!

All images courtesy David Keith Photography unless otherwise noted underneath the photo.

The event was held at the stunning Gramercy Park hotel.  The design was absolutely exquisite.  I couldn't take it all in...

photo via Gramercy Park Hotel
Upon arrival we were whisked up to the top floor which houses a variety of meeting rooms and a gorgeous rooftop atrium gathering space.


After checking in we were welcomed into this swanky lounge.  Notice the ceiling.  That is hundreds of individual light bulbs... it was jaw-dropping!  The room was outfitted with furniture and accessories from one of the sponsors for the event, Crate and Barrel.


The atrium bar where we were served refreshments and lunch.  How cute are those marquee lights?  They were especially fun in the evening!


At the time of the event, BHG had just launched their new special edition "Stylemakers" magazine, which highlights the homes of a number of "stylemaker" bloggers.  I'm so excited that several of my friends' homes are featured inside.  Be sure to check out the issue at your local newsstand!


Of course, just as exciting as a day hearing from the leaders in the creative industry, is the opportunity to hang out and chat in person with so many "online" friends.

Me, Emily A. Clark, Rhoda of Southern Hospitality, and Emily of Eleven Gables (photo cred.)

I think we were previewing our cute Boomerang video...

me, Emily, Rhoda, Cyndy from The Creativity ExchangeLaura Trevey

The event was everything and more that you would expect from the talented Better Homes and Gardens creative staff.  Gorgeous flower arrangements from FTD-


This backdrop was probably one of my favorite things there.  It's a living moss wall from Planted Design.  The texture and color variation was so pretty and interesting!


And, of course, the food spread was spectacular and so beautifully and creatively displayed.



We enjoyed plenty of time in between the program sessions to catch up and brainstorm together.



One of the sessions I attended was on floral design.  I greatly enjoyed hearing from these three ladies, and picking up some of their tips and tricks for arranging as well as photography.  I shared these last week in my flower arranging tips post, but these 3 are good ladies to follow on Instagram for inspiring flower feeds:  @francespalmer  @floretflower @emilythompsonflowers


photo Dimples and Tangles

In other sessions, we heard from blogger and author Grace Bonney of Design*Sponge, actress and food expert Padma Lakshmi, and a creative panel including Chris Benz- Creative Director of Bill Blass, Steve Woodard- President of Crate and Barrel, and Stephen Orr- Editor in Chief of BHG.  It was interesting to hear everyone's creative stories and journeys and hear their predictions for up and coming trends.


Emily, Rhoda, and I were intently discussing something...


After a short break we returned for the evening.  This venue was stunning at night!  The rooftop views surrounding the hotel were breathtaking.



photo Dimples and Tangles
After an evening of mingling, a few of us headed to a nearby restaurant for pizza (yum!  I told you about it here), but not before being sent off with a fantastic swag bag.  I wanted to show you these little succulents that were included from FTD, primarily because I loved how they packaged them.  The soil was covered in moss, and then wrapped in plastic wrap so everything stayed in place.  SO smart for all of us that were traveling.  I literally threw this in my carry-on bag- I think it even got buried under some things- and transported it without a hitch.   Something similar would be such great little party or wedding favors.


The next morning we were invited to Crate and Barrel's Soho location for breakfast and more design talk.  We heard from some industry leaders about current and future trends.



The store was gorgeous and they had a wonderful breakfast presentation all ready for us.  Notice the spiced donuts stacked up on a dowel rod- how smart!



So much inspiration and pretty things to snap a shot of!


This event was truly a dream come true for me to be invited to.  I felt completely out of my league, yet everyone from the BHG team to the guest speakers to all of my fellow attendees were gracious and welcoming and kind.  I know that I owe YOU, my readers, a huge thank you!  Without you following along, commenting, sharing and pinning posts that you like, and encouraging me, I know that this incredible opportunity would have never come my way.  So, thank you!



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