How To Make a Floral Wreath by Erin Mulvany

Fresh flowers are a great touch to any home and they can also step up a home’s curb appeal. With Valentine’s Day right around the corner, a fresh flower wreath with all the colors on the day-of-love spectrum would be a perfect accent to get in the spirit. It’s also a great alternative to buying those cheap decorations from the Target dollar aisle. We’re all guilty of that shopping binge, but this way to don’t waste space and you can switch out flowers based on the season!
What you’ll need is a 12-inch floral foam wreath base, which you can find at your local craft store like Hobby Lobby, ribbon to hang your wreath with, green leaves to add texture to your arrangement and flowers of your choice. We like peonies! If you don’t have a nail in your front door already for wreaths, you can easily buy a command hook instead.
First, saturate your foam frame in cool water. If you stick it to a dry wreath, it will destroy the foam and make it more difficult for the flowers to stay and stay in. Before you make the big step of sticking your flowers in, I like to lay them on top of the wreath to get an idea of how I want my flowers and greenery laid out.
Make sure you don’t clump all your big flowers in one spot, but don’t make them all perfectly spread apart either. I usually follow the 2-1-3 method, which is 2 clusters, 1 cluster and 3 clusters of large flowers with smaller flowers and greenery in between.

Miki Duisterof

Miki Duisterof

ie the ribbon around the top of your wreath and hang it on your front door. If you want to make it more festival, you can add 3D elements such as fun heart and arrow die cuts or other odds and ends you find at the craft store, or, dare I say, the Target dollar aisle.
Here’s a tip: if you want to keep the wreath and not constantly switch out flowers, just use either dried flowers such as hydrangeas or fake flowers.
Are you ready to get started on your Valentine’s Day wreath? What other holiday wreaths would you want to make for your home?

3 Tips to Combining Homes & Design Styles by Erin Mulvany

Whenever you find that person you’re ready to share a space with it is an intoxicating feeling. You’re on cloud nine, weightless and are already casting who will play you the romcom made about your relationship. Then you have to actually combine homes. Movies tend to skip this part. Combining styles and furniture can be difficult if you’re farmhouse and he’s mid-century modern. Don’t panic! Here are three easy tips to combining homes and design styles that will leave your relationship intact.

Abstract vs. Classic

Some people can be a little out there while others can love the status quo. That doesn’t mean your house has to be either-or. Use abstract art to offset classic furniture pieces or vice versa. This will give your space an updated look and will allow you more freedom in combining period pieces that fit within your motif.

Hue and Me

Deciding on colors can be difficult and, let’s be real, all those shades of gray start to run together at a certain point. Merge styles a color combination. Whether it is an accent color or updating a decade by using a high gloss paint, you can modernize or traditional a space with paint.

Cover It Up

Every commercial I see that shows a couple moving in together highlights the chair. The chair the man loves and cannot live without yet it is falling about. This is where some DIYing and a weekend project can salvage his favorite piece. Either purchase a slipcover or reupholster the chair (or whatever his favorite piece may be) and find that spot in a room where it can blend or be an accent piece.

Mixing styles can be a challenge but if you work together, the end result can be spectacular. Don’t worry if you’re stuck in a room or paint colors are being the enemy; contact us for a consultation about your space! 

How To Feng Shui Your Home by Erin Mulvany

Feng Shui is an age-old Chinese practice that is meant to bring peace and harmony to your home and keep your energy levels balanced. I don’t know about energy points, but I do know about organization and how to keep a home put together. There are feng shui methods that actually provide down-to-earth tips to make any home look and feel more cohesive and calm.

Clear The Clutter

Lighten your load by avoiding putting a nick knack on every table, shelf or counter. Three pieces per flat surface often do the job and leave you with ample room to truly live in your home. This step is probably the easiest or hardest, depending on how you collect things. It may even be therapeutic to remove items that no longer have relevance it in your and your home. 

Improve Your Air Quality

Houseplants are all the rage these days. Fashion bloggers to Fixer Upper have included plants in various spots to add color. Not only are they a great design addition, certain plants can also improve your home’s air quality. Whether it’s in the corner of a room or on a bedside table, houseplants will help you to breathe easier. Below is a list of easy-to-care-for houseplants!

  • Areca Palm
  • Dracaena Janet Craig
  • English Ivy
  • Boston Fern
  • Peace Lily

et's Go Natural

Natural light is a great way to brighten your home and relax your mind. While we can’t always just knock out a window whenever we feel like our home is too dark, full-spectrum lights can help brighten a room while still feeling natural. Also make sure that drapery or shutters aren’t always closed off. I try to open my windows a few times a month (weather permitting) to add in that smell of the outdoors! 

Feng Shui doesn’t have to be about energy points or defining the bagua, it can simply be about opening your home to more simpler (and often times free) alternatives. Instead of fake plants and scented candles, opt in for a more natural touch.

DIY Rustic Shelves by Erin Mulvany

We all have those walls that just need something to take it to the next level. It may be above the couch, the space on the guest bathroom wall or kitchen storage. Adding shelving is an easy fix and it doesn’t have to be expensive if you do it yourself! So stop scanning the West Elm sales page and head to your local home improvement store to get your rustic shelves. 

Reclaimed wood is a great way to combine modern and rustic while still looking expensive. Look around you home and find a space that needs storage or decor. Before you head to the hardware store, map out where and how long you want your shelves. I use painters tap and a level to make sure everything lines up and perfectly fits the space I need. Once you have your measurements ready, you can get to shopping!

Make sure you remember your measurements! I never leave the house without a sticky note in hand to ensure I come back with the same size wood as I intended. I tend to lean towards pine when I’m staining since it’s a lighter wood. A 2” x 10” piece should be thick enough to support items placed on the shelf. You can have the home improvement store cut the pieces into whatever size you need and make sure you have them cut one extra, just in case! 

Now to add the modern touch! Galvanized pipe, it’s everywhere and I love it. Depending on the size of your shelves, you want two supports for each shelf. If you have a super long shelf that you plan on adding a lot to, three or four may be necessary. To make one shelf bracket, you’ll need ¾” galvanized pipe, ¾” floor flanges and ¾” pipe cans. Add a small can of special walnut stain, a sponge brush, textured spray paint in Aged Iron and flat black protective enamel spray. 

Assembling the shelving brackets is easier than Ikea furniture. Simply attach the pipe to the floor flange on one end and the cap on the other. Once they’re all put together, spray them with your Aged Iron textured spray paint. Then after they have all dried, cover them with a coat of flat black enamel spray paint. This combination makes the pipes look similar to wrought iron, without costing what wrought iron costs.

Make sure your shelving boards are completely sanded and ready to be stained. With a sponge brush, apply the stain and make sure to get into every nook and cranny of the wood.  If you want a glossy look, you can seal the planks with polyurethane. 

Using toggle bolts to hold the pipes in place, add the wood on top. I tripled checked with my level to make sure the pipes were straight before completely screwing in the bolts. 

Add your accessories to the shelves to add your own personal touch!

How To Update Your Children’s Room This Summer by Erin Mulvany

One of the hardest things is watching our kids grow up. Updating their rooms is a right of passage every parent has to take whenever they become ‘too cool’ for their childhood theme bedroom. This summer is a great time to work with your child on creating a space that they can be proud of and brag about to their friends.

My first step is getting organized with storage benches, under bed storage and closet hangers. Reducing clutter can make the room not only seem bigger, but provide more counter space for things like homework or writing thank you notes! Everything should reasonably have a place so organization is always easy. Here’s a storage bench I love from World Market!

Now the fun part starts, the decorating! I like to talk to my kids or my client’s kids first to get an understanding of what they like. You never want to paint a Rocket’s fan’s bedroom Maverick’s blue. One of the rooms I have done was for a client who loved and played baseball at Cy-Ranch. He was inspired by his high school’s baseball logo and we went from there. It’s always good to have a starting point to spur inspiration. While what we see in magazines are beautiful rooms, it’s not our rooms.  Making a room unique to your child will add that special touch! 

With this room, we used a super cool industrial style locker bed by Pottery Barn. The lockers underneath added for great storage! One of my absolute favorite aspects of this room is the custom made industrial and wood shelves. Adding that custom touch through working with local craftsmen can take any room to the next level! We added the final touches of a new bedspread, drapes and personal touches from the client to create his dream bedroom!

The best thing about redoing your child’s bedroom is giving them a sanctuary.  Whether they’re looking for something more modern or going off their favorite team, it should reflect them. Updating your child’s room? We want to see! Follow us on Facebook and post your pictures!

Quick Fourth of July Decoration Ideas by Erin Mulvany

Summer is a busy time and holidays can sneak up on us without warning. Seriously. It has been raining so much down here in the South that no one would even know we’re approaching 4th of July. SURPRISE, it is just days away! If you haven’t planned your Independence Day bash or aren’t attending someone else’s, here’s a quick way to make your get-together a splash! 

Don’t panic about not having it all, the best thing about 4th of July is that is already has a backyard feel so a picnic table or any type of wood accept you may have at your home can get you where you need to go. Now all you need it to add some red, white and blue and you’re well on your way to having the perfect summer party. 

I love fresh flowers, I think they can add a pop of color where you need it or become a centerpiece regardless of the table size. All white arrangements are my favorite, but if you need that pop of color, Blue Statices, Red Roses in a white vase or mason jar is a great 4th of July centerpiece.  

Lighting is everything when you’re out late in the backyard. String lights are not only romantic, but they’re a great decoration item as well. Check out these decorative string lights from World Market. 

Last but not least is the first thing your guests will see, your door mat. Check out our last blog about how to make your own custom doormat! Make yours into an American Flag, red, white and blue stars or even have a cute patriotic chevron print pattern! 

We want to see what you’ve done for your Independence Day bash! Tag Vintage & Velvet on Facebook and show off your decorating skills! 

Summer DIY Projects: Welcoming Door Mats by Erin Mulvany

Hey guys! I'm Lillian and this is my attempt at a DIY project. We all know Erin is insanely talented when it comes to interiors and, well, I am not! So I wanted to try a DIY project that anyone can do, and I mean ANYONE,

There’s nothing I love more than summer DIY projects, whether it’s a simple paint  job or a complex upholstery chore. This summer, Vintage & Velvet is doing a DIY series with projects ranging from complex to calming; some you can even do with your kids! 

When I was a kid, my summers consisted of watermelon cookies made by my favorite aunt, that I know learn, were just sugar cookies and a lot of food dye. Still, watermelons represent summertime in my family so I want to surprise my aunt with a new doormat that had sentimental value to everyone in our family (we’re really into our cookies). 

This is a relatively cheap project and a fun one to do with a group making their own doormats! All you’ll need is a plain welcome mat, sponge, scissors, small paintbrush (not the ones you use on your wall) and your watermelon paint colors, which are black, pink and green! Make sure you get your watermelon pink in an exterior finish to ensure it holds up against all the feet walking on it. 

Cut your sponge to look like a slice of watermelon. You can alternate the sizes of watermelon you’d like on your mat or keep them all the same size, it’s up to you! 

Once the watermelon is cut, cut off an inch to mimic the green rind. Now the fun part starts! You can mark where you want to see your watermelons beforehand or go rogue! I went rogue, naturally. Begin with the pink wedges first, and then top each space with the green rind.  Once the paint has dried (about 20 minutes) then add your watermelon seeds with your small paintbrush!  

Give your mat the night to dry and then you have a cut new (and cheap) addition to your home! You can try seasonal doormats or unique mats for each entrance to your house, just have fun with it! Post in the comment and let us know what you’re making on your doormat!

These Are a Few of Erin’s Favorite Things by Erin Mulvany

We all have those things that make our imagination run wild and consume our Pinterest boards in excess. Our fearless leader is no different! Learn what Erin’s favorite things are and what sparks her design genius and, perhaps, they’ll spark yours as well. 

Pillows Upon Pillows

Whether it’s the texture, the color or the print, throw pillows are everything and they belong everywhere. They can spice up a drab couch, breathe life into a master bedroom or add addition charm to a guest room. The possibilities are endless and you can mix and match and play around with sizes, shapes and textures. Throw pillows are a great way to kick your design junkie into high gear; these pieces are low risk and high reward in our book! 

Erin loves Mica Blue Accessories found on Etsy, she has some cool patterns at a cool price. 

Paint Color Swatches

This may be one of our crazier obsessions since but you can find Erin lost in paint swatches on her weekly runs to the hardware store. These little color cards bring promise and so much potential for future design projects and they get the creative juices flowing. Many times you will be told to choose bedding or fabric before your paint, but many great rooms have been designed around a pure love affair of a single color. Break the rules, fall in love with color and let it inspire you!

Farmhouse Tables

Farmhouse tables belong in every room. Ok - maybe not every room, but we love them so much we can dare to dream. They are a sharp right turn from the classic dining room table with perfect matching chairs, the china hutch and polished silver. It flirts with informal style without losing dining room elegance in the process.

Fresh Cut Flowers

What girl could disagree with fresh flowers, right? Whether you go into your backyard and clip a few from your garden, head to the grocery store and grab a boutique right before check out or have your favorite flower dealer at the farmers market, the make a huge impact. Not only do they reduce indoor odors, they add a touch of color, texture and nature to any room. Don’t wait for an anniversary or a special occasion; find some flowers that fit you. 

The Vintage & Velvet team wants to know what inspires you? Comment below!