Party Decor- DIY Water Candles!

Party Decor

Here is a quick & easy, and my all time favourite party décor… with candles, flowers and foliage. I don’t think one can ever go wrong with these. Over the years I have acquired a few shortcuts to dress up my home for a party 🙂 You can never go wrong with flowers; any number, any style, anywhere. And when I don’t have flowers at my disposal… I raid our garden for foliage of various shapes and sizes and fill up my vases. Sometimes I spray paint them! Just a fizz or two! (Sorry, no pictures of spray painted ones…but I shall update with pictures soon).

 

A quick way to add some pizzazz to your party decor is to light some colourful candles. What if you don’t have any colourful candles?  Food colour to your rescue! I gave you a little peek into this tip (a different version) in one of my posts, ‘click here’ to read about it. Dig out different sized flute/cocktail glasses/shot glasses, fill them up with water and add a few drops of food colour, float in a tea lite and you have your instant coloured ‘water’ candle ready 🙂

 

TIP- If you use acrylic/water/poster colours to colour the water, the effect would be opaque-ish where as the effect with food colour is translucent, almost gel candle like. See the difference in the picture galleries.

So many times I have run out of tea lites? No worries, just pour in a tablespoon or two of cooking oil (any, except olive oil) into the coloured water filled glasses and float in cotton ball wick (hand rolled). Ta-da!

 

This works best if the glasses are not very wide-mouthed (narrow rimmed glasses save on oil too).

TIP- You have to be careful with how you roll and flatten your cotton wick, it should float with the wick straight up, in the center of the glass… basically take care of the centrifugal weight of the wick!

Floating flowers in an ‘urli’ or any flat-ish container always lend a festive look to your decor. Here is a step by step picture board of another quick-fix:

 

These oil soaked, cotton ball wick lasts up to an hour or so. I have many more shortcuts to share… all in good time!  ‘Click here’ to take a look at some more decor ideas with nature’s bounty. So, what are your party decor shortcuts? Any quick-fixes to share?

Signing off with the ‘Tricolour’… A Very Happy Republic Day to All! Jai Hind!

Linking this post to : So Much Better With Age ,  A Blossoming Life , House on the Way , Not Just a Housewife, Liz Marie Blog, Fridays Unfolded @ Nancherrow , Nifty Thrifty SundaysInspiration MondayParty, Lines Across- Monday Funday and                     Making Your Home Sing,  Take a Look Tuesdays,  Time to Sparkle, Create Link Inspire , Share Your Stuff Tuesdays,  Krafty Inspiration Thursday, Six Sisters Stuff, Angels Homstead

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Photo Montage...In It's New Look!

Photo Montage…in it’s new look!

Simple changes can do wonders to your decor… after days of contemplating I, finally, decided to pick up my brush and the leftover paint to complete the project. Ever since I finished this project in its earlier version i.e. ‘My Hall of Fame’ Photo Montage, I had this nagging feeling that I wanted something else but then I decided to let it be for a few months before I did what I really had in mind… and that’s exactly what I did today…re-do the look! With a few strokes of my brush I managed to change the look of our living area, it looks much light and breezy now. Presenting my Photo Montage…in it’s new look!

I think it looks less crowded now… what say? Here is how it looked before the new look…To see this transition do check out my earlier post ‘here’

Here is how I did this simple update… I measured and marked the space that I wanted to mask off. Used the masking tape (to keep it equidistant keep measuring) to mask the area to be painted. You can create any design using a masking tape squares, triangles, panels, lines, chevron, diamonds etc.

I wanted alternating panels (vertical) of the ‘leafy’ design and the plain space. Iapplied the first coat of paint… allowed drying time of about half an hour… here was my coffee break before the second coat 🙂 In all, I applied four coats of paint. One strategic mistake that I made in my zeal to start and complete this project; I forgot to sand the area where I had to paint. I realized it only after the first coat… I should have known that I am applying light on dark colour hence the sanding was an integral part to mask off the existing dark colour. That’s the reason for four coats… otherwise two coats would have been sufficient. But all’s well that ends well! 🙂

After the fourth coat it seemed fine (only I know where the flaws are!). Now came the fun part… removing the masking tape!

Here is the work in progress, with pictures to compare…

 

The finished look once again…this is exactly what I had in mind in the first place:-) It took me three hours to complete this project, which includes the drying time between the coats.  So, what do you say? Which one looks better? The old look or the new look?

 

Linking up with- The Dedicated House

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DIY Pompoms

DIY Pompom

Winter holidays are fun…especially when you get a break from work… all festivals are just about over,  no entertaining guests and no social commitments, for sometime at least … absolutely the right time to indulge in some serious home improvement projects or some craftiness! I managed a lil bit of this and lil bit of that. To keep my daughter engaged and indoors (since we had no plans for going out for holidays this year) I decided to introduce some winter crafts to her… the usual, knitting & crocheting with wool. We made some hair bands, florets and pompom with wool. We especially enjoyed making pompom the most. In fact we are hooked!

Here is how we made these adorable DIY pompom… Let me warn you once you make your first pompom you too would be hooked! They are so fun and easy to make. Step one; Hunt for the left over wool at home or purchase the smallest balls of wool (which the shopkeeper would be willing to get rid off at a throw away price). Step two; Gather your supplies… a small ruler, a pair of scissors and of course, wool.

Left over wool

Left over wool

Cut a small piece of wool (about 10 inches) and roll it around the ruler lengthwise, hold both the ends along with the ruler. Now start rolling wool over the ruler widthwise (over the 10” piece of wool as well). Roll it at least 20 times and then some more and some more! More rolling would result in fluffed pompom.  Pull out one end of the 10” wool yarn and tie the rolled up yarn tightly. Slide out the rolled (and tied) wool.

 

Holding the tied wool yarn, cut the loops (as shown). Trim and shape your, almost ready, pompom into a ball. Trimming may take a little practice … you may spoil one odd but you would get the hang of it, I promise :-)Once the pompom are ready, let your imagination run riot! Use them to adorn not just your woolen wear but just about everything! Here are some ideas to get you going…

Use them as bookmarks

 

Use them as a funky ‘charm’ for your purse or bag

DIY Pompoms @ Hooked on Homes (4)

Pompom charms for your bag or purse!

or the pen drives…colour code them!

DIY Pompoms @ Hooked on Homes (23)

pompom for pendrives!

Use them for key rings!

DIY Pompoms @ Hooked on Homes (25)

pompom for key rings!

My daughter attached it to her rubber band (to match her dress)

 

 

How about some funky jewellery?

Fashion with pompoms!

Fashion with pompom!

Adorn the buttons on your coat /cardigan!

DIY Pompoms @ Hooked on Homes (22)

pompom for coat/cardigan buttons!

or just have a cluster ready with a safety-pin to be attached anywhere!

DIY pompoms

DIY pompom

I think very soon the hubby will bar us from trying out any new crafty DIY as my daughter and I go bananas over trying the new craft all over our home making it look one crazy crafty place!

The ideas are endless… Add some fun and colour of winter crafting with these DIY pompom for fashion @ home… add some winter charm!

Here are some more ideas … use a cluster or a single line to adorn:

  • Refrigerator handle/ Door handles
  • Lampshade (along the circumference of the shade bottom)
  • Curtain hemlines
  • Use them as ornaments for tableware, wine glasses,etc.
  • Cell phone charm
  • Zipper ends (for pouches/jackets etc)
  • Corners of scarves
  • Gift tags
  • or make a cute bunting/banner

Linking this post to- The Brambleberry Cottage, Made in a Day, Krafty Cards etc.,  I Heart Nap Time, Angels Homestead, Six Sisters Stuff, Nifty Thrifty Things, The Tablescaper, The Foley Farm, Mom’s the Word, Your Home Based Mom, Making the World Cuter, Lines Across, So Much Better with Age, A Blossoming Life, House on the Way, The NY Melrose Family, Sew Much Ado, Ginger Snapcrafts, Beyond the Picket Fences, 733 Blog, A Glimpse Inside, Liz Marie Blog, Nancherrow, I heart Nap Time

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Computer Table into Study Table@Hooked on Homes  (7)

Computer Table into a Study Table

Having donated his ancient desktop computer a year ago my father-in-law was left with this huge computer desk which he used as a storage cabinet. When we shifted in this house, my son was in need of a study table for his growing collection of books … his ‘babaji’ was happy to give away his computer table to him. With a minimal (almost negligible) strain on our wallets, we up-cycled this computer table into a study table, for our son.

The space for the CPU and the UPS was converted into a closed cabinet and drawers respectively (our carpenter, Naeem, was happy to do it for us! To read about his enthusiasm ‘ Click here’ and ‘ here’). Although the colour of the wood used for the cabinet door and the drawers doesn’t match with the existing wood stain but I don’t mind, it saves me a lot of time from dusting…and, needless to say, hides all his clutter! The closed cabinet now holds his school bag and other stationery pouches. The two drawers hold all his stationery and other trivia.

The top shelf holds his course books and reference books.

The area meant for the desktop screen serves as the study surface now. Hubby dearest attached this wall mounting LED spot light on the back board of the table, this leaves his study area free of the table top study lamp.

I made these message boards for his study table. To make this magnet message board and the soft board click here…it’s a very easy and do-able DIY. One of the two extendable sliders meant for the keyboard works as an additional space for his daily use notebooks and papers, the other (right below the table top) works as an extended table when he needs to spread out and work.

I have pulled out all the CD separators from the CD rack but for two…these two CD separator work as shelves for keeping things off the study area. The best part is these separators can be slid out and re adjusted based on the size of the object being kept there.

The bottom shelf was a place for the huge bulky printer (got rid of it!). It’s a removable shelf… we got it cut in half… now there is room for legs as well as additional space for a few more books.

It’s a heavy-duty study table now! And it houses just about all his books and stuff. My father-in-law is happy that it is being used well!

Have you any furniture which you use other than what it was meant for?

 

 

 

Linking up with- Redoux Interiors, Miss Mustard SeedFunky Junk, Nifty Thrifty Things, The Foley Fam, The Tablescaper

 The Heart of Your HomeDIY ShowoffCreating My Way to SuccessI Should be Mopping the FloorThe Dedicated HouseSkip to my LouThe Charm of HomeBacon Time with the Hungry HippoA Blossoming Life

Sugar Bee CraftsThe Recipe CriticNap Time CreationsA Bowl Full of Lemons, Cooking Mimi, My Uncommon Slice of Surburbia

House on the WayGinger Snap CraftsSew Much AdoOh My CreativeSomeday Crafts

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My Romantic Home, NancherrowThirty Handmade DaysAngels HomesteadI Heart Nap Time, My Turn for Us

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After the false ceiling

False Ceiling in the Master Bedroom

When we started renovating this house, there was nothing really concrete in our mind; we tackled problems as they came along. We dealt with each of the design related problems with minimal resources and time (since we had to shift in before the academic session began). This is how the master bedroom looked before the renovation.

 

Our master bedroom saw two major changes: one, the shifting of the huge wardrobe and its makeover (read about it ‘here’)and two, creating a false ceiling in the master bedroom for aesthetics. We decided to go in for false ceiling as the existing support beam in the bedroom seemed to divide the room into two (making it look smaller) and we wanted a seamless look, especially after we had moved the wardrobe 4 feet away from the wall… you can read about the faux wall that we created with the wardrobe ‘here’. Oh… we also aligned one of the two fans in the bedroom, to the center of the room.

We added three built in LEDs to the false ceiling just to add a little WOW! factor to the ceiling décor…

 I guess we were inspired by the dramatic look of the living room ceiling ( to see the “Living Room Ceiling Makeover” click here ).

Work in progress in the master bedroom…

Here is a before and after picture… with the false ceiling in the master bedroom and the LEDs in place.

 

 

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Chaos

Photography Challenge- Chaos

Keeping a well organised home is tough 24×7 job. Especially when you have two teenagers at home, a full-time job and all other responsibilities of all the roles in my life. So, do I take a chill pill at times? I DO…and I have no qualms about it! As promised, here is my entry on ‘Photography Challenge #7 – Chaos’… and I am assuming I am the first one here in the group! This was one of the easiest photo shoot ever, no preparation, no styling, no re-styling just click, click and click and it’s done!  This is the scene in my home these days…

My son’s books are all over the home; his Grade 12 boards are round the corner. Asking him to clean/organise his stuff at this time is inviting AN ’emotional/sensitive’ load of trouble or a confrontation which results in waste of precious time, so I’ve been avoiding it.

In fact I am not allowed to organize for him either… he says not to mess with any of it as it disturbs his layout… his reasoning – it is a very deliberate organized chaos that makes his studying organized. Are you getting any of this? Me neither but I have given in to his teen whims and fancies since I know he is going through a stressful time.

It is just a matter of a couple of months; I think I can live in the sea of books all around my home for that long.

While I took other photos of the seen chaos in my home, I wondered, “what am I going to write about it?”, “How would people react to these pictures?” As I sat down, transferring these photos in my laptop… looking at them all these thoughts from the book- ‘The Chaos Theory’ started dancing in my head only to realise how true it is to say that – ‘Chaos is the science of surprises. It teaches us to expect the unexpected.’ The ‘unexpected’ thing here would be that I am okay with the chaos in my home!

In everyday language “chaos” implies the existence of unpredictable or random behaviour.

Although the theory deals with a field of Mathematics but if you actually look at it the same applies to the actions we perform in our daily lives, a case in point- My random behaviour resulted in picture no. 4 and 5… slowly and steadily, over a period of a year. The undesirable disorganization or chaos that you see in our basement is the result (of small actions) of not trying to contain the chaos (in fact added more to it…in smaller doses:-( ). And now I need serious help in containing it (can’t do anything until the summer vacation). You can learn looking at my chaotic basement how one should avoid actions/procrastination which may end up being unfavourable to our daily living… I have certainly learned the hard way.

I find solace in the fact that – ‘At the centre of Chaos Theory is the fascinating idea that order and chaos are not always diametrically opposed. Some systems flip this premise around, with orderly effects emerging out of turbulent and chaotic causes.’

I will have things in order…may not be soon but things will definitely be in order. All this would happen once there is clarity in the decisions that we would make this year and once my son is settled in his choice of stream for Graduation… first things first… I wish I could share more but sometimes the lesser said is better (sigh).

Pls don’t forget to take a look at these amazing members’ blog entries in this Photography Challenge, you’ll be amazed with their creativity!

To see the previous Photography Challenge entry {click here}.
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Instant magic with DIY floating candles in cocktail glasses!

Radiant Orchid…Color of 2014

Browsing the internet sometime in September, last year, I came across this report by Refinery 29‘Colour Predictions for 2014 by Pantone’, since then I wanted to do a post on it…but then I decided to wait until the New Year… in other words – I forgot about it! I get caught up with so many things all at once that I don’t do justice to any of them… need to learn to prioritize.

Coming back to the post… having rediscovered my folder, here is the reveal (most of you may already know it)…Radiant Orchid…the color of 2014! Making it a little less complicated (for my hubby’s sake)- It’s purple! (for him pink, red and blue are all purple! 😉 So, goodbye Emerald Green (2013) and welcome Radiant Orchid!

For the ‘good morning sunshine!’ kind, like me – The PANTONE® happens to be the world authority on colour and provider of colour systems across a variety of industries.  So, Purple aka Radiant Orchid it is! Be ready to see all hues of purple this year as it is going to be the fashion colour for just about everything and anything… like it or not!

 

Image courtesy 1. Seventeen                        2. www.jsyk.org   3. via internet images

It is my daughter’s favourite colour, last year, she ensured one of the walls in her room got painted in it! Here is her favourite corner in her bedroom.

I would be lying if I said I don’t have an affinity for this colour; it is indeed an interesting colour if coördinated well in home decor. The rarity of the colour in nature has given it an exotic and mysterious elegance. Who wouldn’t fall in love with these beauties?!

Going by the colour theory (which we followed in our home)- Purple is a combination of red (warm)and blue(cool) colour, it combines the calm stability of blue and the fierce energy of red, retaining both the properties. It is associated with royalty, luxury, power, and ambition.  I am all set, with all things purple from around my home to welcome the colour of the year, without making any dent in my wallet! 😉 ) You don’t have to paint your walls purple to bring in the colour just, by adding pops of the colour around your home, you too can bring in the symbolism associated with purple; which is  wealth, creativity, wisdom, devotion, peace, pride, mystery, and magic! Now, who wouldn’t mind to be associated with such goodness!

So, how would I do it? Ummm… maybe throw in a few purple cushions.

A purple runner perhaps… or a purple rug.

Or bring in a few branches of the humble Bougainvillea (the purple pinkish one)… first thing in the morning tomorrow!

A candle/ votive… the easiest way I bring in some instant colour and glam in my home! Here is my little party trick – take a few different sized flute/cocktail glasses, fill them up with water, add a few drops of the colour(water colour/poster colour/fabric colour/food colour) you want, float in a tea lite and voilà! Instant magic!

Look for little scraps of craft paper or fabric to cover a writing pad, pen stand, vase etc… to bring in the hues of Radiant Orchid!

How about purple bed sheets? Don’t they look fab!

Image courtesy 1. Myntra.com    2. swayamindia

On one hand, the colour purple can boost imagination, creativity and add that royal richness to your home, on the other too much of purple can cause moodiness/anxiety. Keeping that in mind (if you follow colour theory), spruce up your home with much imagination and less monies. Look for all things purple in your home/wardrobe and get creative with your decor skills. Nothing is right or wrong… it is your home… your storyboard… go ahead create your mysterious, magical ‘Radiant Orchid-Color of 2014’ home story! And then how about sharing it with me 🙂 I ‘d love to see your ideas!

Here is an interesting link on colours and their significance  http://www.colormatters.com/purple

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