A Little of This & That… Renovating, Decorating, DIY Projects & Family
A Little of This & That… Renovating, Decorating, DIY Projects & Family

An End-of-Summer Vacation in Maui (Part 1)

Maui Vacation | PepperDesignBlog.com

Very recently we were lucky enough to travel over to Maui with my family for some much needed R&R and for a family vacation.

Maui Vacation | PepperDesignBlog.com

The trip was awesome, the break from ‘the norm’, so needed, and the rest (well, as much as you can get with two littles) was sweet. I won’t overload your computer screen with vacation photos :), but if you want to hear about the start of our week (and see my favorite photos!), follow the jump. Continue reading

Decorating for Fall… a Few Golden Ideas

As you can imagine, decorating for fall this year in our home meant using up A LOT of gold paint :). On Monday I shared a few ideas on how we’re adding fall to our home. Today, a few of the projects that we tackled.

My favorite might be the gold tipped pine cones.

Our Home, Fall 2014 | DIY Gold Tipped Pine Cones | PepperDesignBlog.com

We found these pine cones on a recent hike about an hour from our house in Mount Laguna. I love that it’s easy to get out of the city here in San Diego and to explore nature at its finest after just a short car ride. I grew up with pine cones all over my backyard (and with plenty of places to build forts and search for little animals) so getting outdoors now that we have a more urban lifestyle is so key. It was Taylor’s idea to collect pine cones – almost every one that we passed on our hike she stopped to examine carefully, and if it weren’t for the pokey nature of these guys she would have attempted to carry armfuls home!

Decorating for Fall | Gold Tipped Pine Cones | PepperDesignBlog.com

We brought home maybe 8 or 9 and I left them outside for a week or so to make sure that any stray seeds or bugs found a new home (a reader suggested baking them at 250 for a bit – I’m going to try that next time!)

Decorating for Fall | Gold Tipped Pine Cones | PepperDesignBlog.com

Using gold spray paint, I carefully waved the can just above each pine cone so that it received a very light dousing. Just enough to cover the edges. Two years ago I lined up a similar set of pine cones in a cupcake tray and hand painted the tips – this was so much faster :-).

Decorating for Fall | Gold Tipped Pine Cones | PepperDesignBlog.com

My next spray painting victim was a stem of faux fall leaves.

  Our Home, Fall 2014 | DIY Gold Painted Leaves | PepperDesignBlog.com

I mentioned that I love natural decorations most (stuff we can find outside or purchase from a pumpkin patch, for example), but after trying a few different types of real fall leaf decorations in the past and experimenting with how to preserve them so that they did’t shrivel up just as we are getting into November, I decided to pick up a faux leaf stem and a bag of fake leaves from Michaels for spray painting. You can see their painting progress in the photo just above with the finished pine cones.

The newly gilded stem :):

Our Home, Fall 2014 | Mantel | PepperDesignBlog.com

Our Home, Fall 2014 | Mantel | PepperDesignBlog.com

The loose leaves:

Our Home, Fall 2014 | DIY Gold Painted Leaves | PepperDesignBlog.com

My last gold victim was a striped candle that found a new home on the mantel because he matched so nicely. I’ve had this guy around for a while in my office but he’s been so pretty to look at that I’ve yet to light him.

Our Home, Fall 2014 | DIY Gold Striped Candle | PepperDesignBlog.com

To create the stripe, I used painter’s tape (I recommend pressing down firmly along the edges) and gold acrylic paint that I applied with a brush. I recommend removing the painter’s tape shortly after applying the paint for the cleanest line.

Decorating for Fall | DIY Gold Striped Candle | PepperDesignBlog.com

Decorating for Fall | DIY Gold Striped Candle | PepperDesignBlog.com

These would be so pretty on a dining room table! A whole set? Gah. Or I love the idea of creating some as gifts this Christmas.

PS here’s that link again to the full fall tour at our casa. And just for fun, a few more gold ideas for you: gold ‘dipped’ pumpkins, gold pumpkin place cards  (with a sharpie) and a diy gold mercury glass.

Porcelain Bird Feeders for the Backyard

Our Backyard | PepperDesignBlog.com

You may have noticed this little detail during the original backyard refresh walk through. Hanging above our outdoor cooking area in the large pepper tree that expands over the patio are two lovely little porcelain white bird feeders.

I wanted to take a moment to share with you all today more about the two amazingly talented artists who work together at their co-founded L&M Studio in New York to produce these beautifully crafted, handmade feeders. I’ve had my eye on one for our yard since last winter, but held off until we officially decided to dedicate some time and resources to updating our backyard.

L&M Studio Bird Feeders | PepperDesignBlog.com

Our Backyard | PepperDesignBlog.com

The hanging feeders (or planters) are coated in a clear glaze on the exterior and a red or orange glaze on the inside. I hung one of each and I love the color contrast – especially the surprise peek of color that you spot when walking past them (and we’ve definitely repositioned them a few times to avoid any potential head contact – being the short one in the family sometimes I don’t even realize :-)).

Our Backyard | PepperDesignBlog.com

Meg and Lucie, the ladies behind L&M Studio, are friends who met while resident artists in New York. They opened their shop and a storefront in Catskills, NY in September of 2011. They combined their talents to produce a beautiful portfolio of porcelain work, all with that modern edge. I highly recommend checking out their faceted wall-hanging planters and their birdhouse, too. I am a huge fan of etsy and was thrilled to find their studio after a write up about them online. The ladies teamed up with me (at my request) to feature these feeders on the blog.

Check out the full backyard refresh over here and all posts related to digging up and redesigning this space right here!

This post is sponsored in part by L&M Studio. They provided one bird feeder and I bought a second on my own because I loved their work so much (and how the feeders look as a set!). 

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