DIY: How to Make Fabric Pumpkins

It’s officially fall! Although, for me it was a little anti-climatic, since I started decorating for fall the first week of September. But now, we autumn-aficionados can revel in our favorite season and post too many photos of pumpkin spice lattes while wearing cozy sweaters and boots.

I shared in my Friday Finds post these adorable velvet pumpkins from Target (for $1!) but bemoaned that they only had one color left. After I brought them home, I remembered that I have yards of bright blue velvet in my fabric stash, thanks to the Ikea curtains we bought for our master bedroom that needed about a foot cut off of the bottom to fit our windows. I didn’t have any real pumpkin stems, so I DIYed a cute way of getting around that, so don’t despair if you don’t have any pumpkin stems either. I like the contrast of the hemp twine and velvet anyway; it’s very farmhouse chic.

Let’s get started!

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5 Friday Finds: Inexpensive Fall Decor & Style

1. Gold frames from Dollar Tree

These frames look way more expensive than the one dollar that they are! I bought two 8x10s and two 4×6 frames, and I could use a few more.

2. Glasses from Warby Parker

I’ve written about my love for Warby Parker glasses before, but my loyalty was recently renewed after my eye appointment last week. My eyes have gotten worse, a symptom of now being in my late twenties, and they tried REALLY hard to get me to buy glasses in the store. Even with my vision insurance, the glasses were still more than Warby’s, and they weren’t as cute! Nor did they give one pair away when you buy one. The sales lady was skeptical of my $99 glasses, and sniffed, “These are way better quality that what you’re buying online.” I told her they have the same anti-glare, anti-scratch coatings and the frames are acetate – which is exactly what the ones they sell are made of – but oh well. I’m shopping for some new frames tonight, although I might stick with my “Wilkie” frames. Brian called them “sexy librarian” style, and I’m ok with that.

3. Target Dollar Spot Pumpkins and Towel

I always love the fall stuff in the Dollar Spot (or Bullseye’s Playground? Whatever it’s called) bins, and I couldn’t resist the velvet pumpkins. I bought all they had left, three of this light green color, for $3 each. Some stores apparently have navy blue ones, and I’m very jealous. These mini porcelain pumpkins are too cute, and were $1 each. Here’s a link to similar-ish ones online. The towel has stitching in rose gold/copper, so that’s going to look stellar in my kitchen!

4. Zoya Purple Nail Polish

I’m going to the dark side, and trying this on my fingernails. Zoya nail polish doesn’t contain the “big 3” most harmful chemicals. This color is called “Debbie,” and it’s perfect for fall. Tip: if you’re not sure about a bold or dark color, I find that I typically like using it on my toes.

5. Fur Pillow from TJ Maxx

Maybe this pillow looks a little ridiculous, but I don’t care. IT’S SO FLUFFY I COULD DIE. So cozy and soft, it’s perfect for cuddling with my coffee and a good book. Here’s couple more options if you’re interested in adding some texture to your couch: Amazon fur pillow, TJ Maxx patterned fur pillow.

What’s one thing you’re loving? Let me know in the comments!

10 Fall Bucket List Ideas

I used to be ambitious with my fall bucket lists, and my summer bucket lists for that matter. The last fall bucket list I could find had ten items on it, with little doodles illustrating the items. This year I focused on our top priorities: food, travel, and, you know … overpriced pumpkins.

The memories are priceless, right?

1. Eat all the Pumpkin Things

Hooray for Trader Joe’s! But I hear Aldi’s has a great selection also. 

2. Visit a Pumpkin Patch

The most popular pumpkin patch in our area costs $18 a person. So… we found a cheaper option that ended up being just as much fun for Edison, I’m sure, considering that his favorite things were the corn maze, seeing a tractor, and looking at all the pumpkins. 

3. Take a Day Trip to See Fall Foliage

Our #3 item started as a day trip to Sedona, but we ended up going past Sedona to Flagstaff, because more than anything, we wanted to feel cold. When the sun was setting, we rolled the windows down as we drove through the mountains, and shivered happily for as long as we could, before putting on sweaters. 
We went for a “hike,” more of a walk, in Munds’ Park to enjoy the orange and yellow oak and aspens.

4. Explore a New Place

Google “best small towns,” “scenic drives,” “best diners,” “historic landmarks,” in your state and see where it takes you! 
We’d been to Flagstaff before, but we discovered new places this trip. We had turkey ruben sandwiches and deviled eggs at Aspen Deli, and spent the afternoon going to shops downtown and watching trains. And we found this incredible mural on Orpheum Theater!

5. Organize Closets

I started with Edison’s closet, and took a Saturday to sort through the pile of clothes Edison has outgrown that I’d been shoving into totes in his closet without any organization. I now have a trash bag full of stuff to donate, and one big tote full of all my favorite baby items, and one more tote full of clothes for Edison to grown into. 
Making a capsule wardrobe for yourself, or your kids, is another great way to spend a Saturday and organize your closet. 

6. Run a Turket Trot

The evenings are cooler, so after work I’ve been loading Edison into the stroller and taking Sirius along for a mile run. My goal is to run every night, but some nights Brian comes along and we’ll go for a longer walk. Other nights, it just doesn’t happen. Progress, not perfection. I’m just looking forward to that pumpkin pie at the end of the race!

7. Paint a Pumpkin

Easier and less messy than carving, plus, it’s great for little ones to get involved! Check out 30 painted pumpkin ideas!

8. Bake a Dessert

There’s so many fall recipes I’ve pinned, and never made. I think I should start with something simple. I’m thinking this three ingredient pumpkin bread might be a great choice, or these pumpkin oatmeal breakfast bars, or some pumpkin pie truffles.

9. Find the Best Apple Cider

Last year, we bought a jug of apple cider from a grocery store that will remain nameless, only to discover that it was indistinguishable from apple juice. This year, we tasted samples of cider at Trader Joe’s before purchasing, and then we found a new brand of apple cider at our Fry’s grocery store that’s also pretty decent. We still haven’t found any as good as the stuff made by the apple orchard in our hometown, so the search continues.
These Apple Cider Moscow Mules from Pretty Plain Jane’s look stunning!

10. Start watching the Harry Potter Movies

This is our own family tradition – usually in October, we begin the series with little Harry in the Sorcerer’s Stone, and by January, usually we’re finishing with the Battle of Hogwarts. If you’re not into Harry Potter, that’s ok (I guess), but you can start a different series you like, like Anne of Green Gables, Gilmore Girls, Star Wars, etc. 
What’s on your bucket list? Share your ideas below, or on social media!

Living Room: Summer to Fall Decor

Long long ago, I shared the inspiration I’d gathered for decorating the living room for summer with a beach house nautical feel. I never did get around to painting the entry way navy, sadly, but I did still achieve the sophisticated Southern California vibe I wanted. 
I kept the posters up that I used for my spring mantle because they worked so well with everything else. I think I might just keep them up year round, they go with everything, and they’re just my favorite.
I bought the anchor, seashells, and starfish at a shop in Seal Beach, the overflow of what I used in Edison’s room. The shadow boxes are a DIY.
The whiteboard in front of the fireplace…that’s just to keep Sirius from getting in there and dragging remnants of charred wood all over the rug, and leaving sooty footprints all over the house. Been there, done that.
Ah yes, the entry way. I love the little lanterns I got at Ikea, and the fishing net I got to keep after one of the baby showers. But this arrangement, and the gallery wall, are seriously lacking something. More things on the wall? Taller objects on the table? 

And now, ladies and gentlemen, the time has come to bust out the fall decorations! Let’s get this pumpkin spice scented party started.

I own one tote of fall decor, which is a 50% increase since we bought the house. A little goes a surprisingly long way.

How fitting is that pillow? I bought that in Southern California along with the beachy items, but the burlap, red, and gray fit perfectly for fall. And it’s super comfy.
I bought navy and white pillow cases from this Etsy shop to give the pink and gold pillows a face-lift without having to buy and store more pillows. The anchor pillow in Edison’s room used to be out here on the couch also.

Better Homes and Gardens got the memo to match my teal and orange color scheme. 

 

The globe is from Target, and the clock I’ve had so long, I’m not sure where it came from. 
I realized as I arranged this that have “autumn wreath,” “cinnamon spice,” “farm stand apple,” and “cappuccino” scented candles, but I’m not sure I own a pumpkin spice candle! The horror!
 

And my sad entryway… it doesn’t help that the lighting was terrible, but I only have limited time before the little man wakes up from his nap. So if you have any ideas for this space, let me know in the comments below.
Anyone have a recommendation for where to find a good pumpkin spice candle? Let me know asap! 

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My Fall Bucket List

I discovered with my summer bucket list, I initially set the bar too low. Since I crossed most of my list off in the first couple weeks, I added a couple things: 

  • Take swimming lessons
  • Post a happy photo on Instagram every day
I did accomplish the first – as intimidating as it was, I joined the Master Swim Class at my gym that Brian has been attending to prepare for his triathlon. I really couldn’t swim when I started – in all the years of swim classes at the YMCA as a kid, I never figured out proper breathing. Despite the embarrassment of near-drowning the first lesson, I’m really glad I took this class. I’m swimming better now than I ever have before,  and it’s actually kind of fun! 
As for the second goal – I failed. Which is really too bad. I need the reminder to look for something positive every day. So, I’m putting this one on my fall list. 
1. Post a happy photo on Instagram every day.
2. Go to a bonfire. I put this on my summer list originally, which was a terrible idea. I think it will be much more pleasant in the fall.
3. Have people over. Maybe a little party of some sort, if I’m being really adventurous. 
4. Learn to country dance. One of my friends just learned recently, and she’s inspired me to try. 
5. Learn to play a complete song on the guitar. 
6. Read a book. 
7. Pack. 
8. Move. 
9. Unpack.
10. Decorate the new house for fall. Yes, you read that right – we are in the process of buying a house! Our first, very-own house!

The current owners have 10 chickens in the backyard. There’s also a garden, and a fireplace, and so much more. I’m excited to share it with you soon!

What’s on your fall bucket list? Leave a comment below. 

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INSPIRE: Fall Trends, Fair Trade Edition Part 3

Blue Fall Fair Trade Fashion

I channeled the grays of overcast fall skies and deep blues and teals of autumn lakes in this outfit.

One of the fall trends I mentioned in the first part of this series that I’m excited about is wearing hats – beanies in particular. Expect to see a beanie explosion as the weather cools off, and consider getting one for yourself that you can feel confident wearing, knowing that everyone with a part in making it, from picking the cotton to knitting the hat, was paid fairly. And as a result of your support, they’re now able to support themselves and their families.

If hats aren’t your thing, try some of the other pieces in this outfit. Not only will you be on trend with the fall blues and grays, warm, cozy, and comfortable, but you’ll also make an impact in someone else’s life. Hi-five!

Classic Hat, blue from Noonday Collection / Chevron Dangle Earrings / Teavy Upcycled Taupe Cardigan from Raven + Lily / Stina Top from Threads 4 Thought / Canyon Cord Pant from Prana / Cabled Cowl from 4 All Humanity / Dahlia Necklace / Pina Stamp Ring / Hi-Five Mitts 

Check out the first and second fall fair trade and sweatshop free outfit collages.

What are you excited to wear this fall? 

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INSPIRE: Fall Trends, Fair Trade and Sweatshop-Free Edition

Now that the New York Fashion Week is over, fall fashion recaps are flooding my bloglovin’ feed. I love browsing photos of beautifully styled clothes with cozy textures, rich jewel tones, and classic patterns.

Some of my favorite fall trends this year include: 

  • Plaid – almost always a fall staple, this year we’ll see a lot of it. It’s classic, timeless, and versatile. The plaid skirt I wore over ten years ago would fit right into fall 2013. Depending on how you wear it and the colors involved, plaid can be western, preppy, or celtic. 
  • Booties – I haven’t taken the plunge to buy a pair of booties myself, but I do like how they look on other people. 
  • Coats – These were popular on the runway this fall. Trench coats, fur coats, military style jackets, and menswear coats were a few of the trends.
  • Hats – Particularily the humble beanie. 
  • Colors – The Pantone colors for fall are a mix of colors I would expect, like dark purple, red, orange, moss green, gray, and emerald, paired with unexpected colors like pink, almost-neon green, royal blue, and coffee brown. 
  • Fur, leather, and knits – The best part of fall fashion for me is the textures. Leather is still in, fur is popular, and thick chunky knits are back. 
Just to review, the ethical fashion movement is a response to the abuses that are a part of the fashion industry, such as environmental damage, excessive waste, and human rights abuses. So, in today’s post, I’ve created a few inspiration boards highlighting fair trade and sweatshop-free products that fit the fall trends. 
Plum and Gray Fall Fairtrade fashion

Carolina Fringe Scarf from Noonday Collection / Elegant Arrows Necklace from Noonday Collection / Teavy Upcycled Tailored Jacket (also in black) from Raven + Lily / Mug hand knitted cozy from Noonday Collection / Rocky Sweatshirt from Threads 4 Thought / Horn Triangle Necklace from Indego Africa / Infinity Rings from 4AllHumanity / Violet Horn and Paper Bracelet from Noonday Collection

I especially love the tailored jacket from Raven and Lily – it’s recycled, and it’s made by at risk women Phnom Pehn, Cambodia, allowing them to provide for their families. 

I’ve made two other inspiration boards, and I’ll share them with you soon! If you like the collage above, please pin it to Pinterest to spread the fairtrade love with others.

What are your favorite fall trends? Share them with us in the comments! 

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Apartment Tour: Fall Decor

Earlier this week I shared some ideas for adding nature to your fall decor. Today I’m going to share my fall decor, and show you a little of our new apartment!

The candle in the picture above is from Bath and Body Works, and it makes our apartment smell like an evergreen forest! It’s heavenly, and it lasts forever!

This is our couch, a free gift from some friends. Funny, the colors are very similar to our old free couch! The mirror came with the dresser shown later in this post, both for $30! 

I made little “nests” of leaves around the house for these gilded birds. 

Here’s our dining room table centerpiece:

 

Here’s the dresser I mentioned. I keep all my craft and sewing stuff inside.

One of my favorite possessions: A nutcracker and wood bowl!

Now. I need your opinion. Did I hang these pictures too high??? It looks funny to me, but Brian says it looks great. What do you think, is there an awkward gap between the pictures on the wall and those on the dresser? 

I thought the mirror looked a little empty, so I added this free printable garland from TomKat Studio
Take a good look at this couch. It’s now in the process of getting slipcovered. 

In other news, tomorrow hopefully a dream of mine will be fulfilled. We’re getting Christmas photos taken! We are planning to go to a pretty park with a string of Christmas lights and have some fun. I’ve wanted to take Christmas pictures and send cards for a long time, so I’m very excited that it’s actually going to happen this year!

And also, next week I start a new job! Target hired me for a seasonal sales floor position. Since we’re not travelling this year, it just made sense to bring in a little extra income. With it, I hope to purchase some Adobe software, cover some car repairs, and Christmas presents!

So, what’s new with you? What are your holiday plans? Does your family take Christmas pictures? I’d love to hear from you 🙂