Sometimes your wrapped presents and gifts make the best party decor. Maybe you’ve created some amazing homemade gifts and after wrapping them you realize that they are just too pretty to hide in a box. Or perhaps you’ve found a deal on some great gift wrapping and realize how nice it would look on your party table. If you’re hosting a party and are planning on handing out party favors or gifts, why not incorporate it into your home decor? Here are some great gifts that do double duty as both gift and decorating, perfect for any party you plan on hosting!
Candles & Votives
A great party favor or gift is the gift of a homemade candle or personalized votive candle holder. There are so many easy tutorials to follow online (try this one for a spiced-scented homemade candle). Or skip the candle making and stick to a pretty votive holder that you can craft yourself. Place the candles or votives on a mirrored tray (which is especially spectacular once they are all lit), on top of candlesticks (to help add height) or at each place setting.
An ornament, either handmade or store bought, makes a great party gift but can also help dress up your table. Place one at each place setting, or personalize it and use it as a place card. Another idea might be to group the ornaments together in a pretty bowl or hang them on ribbon. Of course this idea is perfect for the winter holidays however it could also be fun for other holidays likeValentine’s Day, Halloween or a family reunion. For homemade Christmas ornaments check out this site here.
Flowers & Plants
If you love decorating with flowers you probably already fill your kitchen, dining room or entryway with a bouquet. But flowers make great gifts as well. Individual buds can be handed out when the party is done, or if you’re hosting for a particular person, like a birthday party, why not wrap up your centerpiece and gift it. Another flower-centric idea is to have each guest bring one flower stem, place it in a vase, and gift the whole bouquet to the guest of honor. This is a great idea for mother’s day or a special birthday. Or if flowers aren’t what you’re looking for, a few succulents in a mason jar (like this one) make for an instant centerpiece gift for your guests.
Some of us love to make cookies, candy, or other edibles and give them as gifts during special holidays. Creating a unique package design is part of the fun, so why not create a food gift that can double as centerpiece or table setting decor? Place one gift at each place setting or pile them high on a cake stand or platter. Grouped en masse this type of gift can really be a showstopper in your home. Need ideas? Try this sugar cookie gift sack, salted caramel hot chocolate gift, or try any of these homemade edibles here.
Frames & Personalized Gifts
A pretty picture frame is always an excellent piece of home decor but can also serve as a gift too. When hosting a birthday party or anniversary party, consider DIYing a frame that holds a photo of the guest(s) of honor. Or take a cue from a common feature at a wedding and have each guest sign around the photo on the paper mat. There are so many other ways to incorporate personalized gifts into your entertaining decor like mugs, napkin rings, napkins, or even apersonalized journal.
You’ve created amazing gifts for your friends and family, wrapped them up just so, but now you need the final element: the gift tag. Of course you can buy inexpensive dollar store gift tags or labels. But if you’ve gone through the trouble of designing the perfect package, you may need to top it off with just the right card. Here are some beautifully designed gift tags and labels that you can
And did we mention the best part? They’re free!
iheartnaptime Christmas Gift Tags
These simple and straightforward holiday gift tags come in red or black print that you can print out onto white paper. The PDF is easy to download and cut out for your packages. Because the print and color is not complicated, you won’t use a lot of toner ink to make these. Additionally, these gift tags are appropriate for all types of recipients like teachers, neighbors and family. Print them on heavier card stock paper to make them feel extra special.
easily print at home onto plain paper or card stock.
This mom designer knew just the right gift tag for her kids to see on Christmas Day: a specially designed delivery card from the North Pole. This fun printable, fromthreelittlemonkiesstudio, features a customizable design that you can edit on your computer and print at home. First, download the Adobe file and save it to your computer. Once you do that, open up the saved file and simply add your child’s name and check off the appropriate boxes.
These beautiful designs, created by Kelli Murray, will look hand-drawn and make any gift appear extra special. Simply download the PDF file and print it out. Due to the shading, detail and amazing colors, you may consider printing these out on quality paper at a local DIY printing place (like a FedEx Kinko’s). This way you’ll ensure that the printed tags actually look as amazing as it does on your screen.
Looking for some colorful yet modern gift tags? M Stetson has a great collection of free printable gift tag designs that are really beautiful and unusual. The watercolor-like appearance will print better if you choose a good quality paper and have a pretty decent printer. Her selection of sizes is also great and will help make your packages look even more interesting.
You probably already have storage baskets for organizing odd-sized or oversized objects. Blankets, toys, shoes, or other objects that need to be corralled in a basket; you might want a basket with holes or you may need solid side (like for small toys). No matter what type of basket, you may be able to easily hang these baskets up off of the floor. This helps maximize unused wall space and also helps make it easier for the taller people in your family to reach what they need.
Make sure you use the right type of fastener to hold the weight of the basket. Look for drywall screws with heavier loads, like 50 lbs, or consider using several smaller baskets instead of one large one. The image above shows how well a few baskets works in a child’s room and the contents can easily be swapped out over time.
Much like the basket example, there are plenty of ways to maximize your magnetic “walls” in the kitchen without spending lots of money. This example shows how easy it is to take your existing smaller containers, like a plastic container, and glue inexpensive magnets to the back side. Quite magically you can turn your large refrigerator into an organized space for spices, cooking notes, small cooking tools or other kitchen equipment.
Not all of us want to hang up our foil or plastic wrap boxes however, sometimes you simply don’t have a drawer or cabinet that fits all of these boxes. Placing them vertically on the wall allows you to easily tear off what you need and easily spot what you might need to buy more of. In vintage markets you can sometimes find old fashioned holders for these goods but this site offers a super cheap way to organize them by using easy-to-find, self-adhesive plastic bathroom hooks.
Apart from improving the aesthetics of your house, entry doors are tasked to protect your house and as such it is imperative to have in place an entry door that is tough and has the capability to stand all kinds of harsh climatic conditions. With constant technology advancements and continuous upgrades there are many different types of entry doors available in varied designs and styles to choose from. Previously wood was the only material that was available for the purpose of crafting doors and windows. But now with so many different and improved options, especially the fibreglass doors Toronto available, why stick to those age-old traditional wooden or wood veneer doors that warp, crack and delaminate after few years?!
Speaking about fibreglass doors Toronto, some of the biggest advantages of having these entry doors installed over the conventional heavy wooden doors are – they are easy to handle and install, they are light weight and they are available in a plethora of designs, texture, colours and styles. Whether it’s the wood grain texture like oak or cherry you prefer or whether you’re looking around for some plain cream coloured door, fibreglass entry doors have it all for you. It’s the high end customer satisfaction that these doors give along with the desirable patterns that can be formed on them, that has made these doors the number one choice amongst homeowners.
Moreover, fibreglass doors Toronto are flexible enough to be moulded into an array of shapes, designs and prints as per your needs, demands and requirements. They provide homeowners with the golden opportunity of coming out of the cocoon and trying out something that’s new, chic and elegant. Instead of harping on the same string, hitting the brownie points has always been our endeavour. These modernized fibreglass entry doors for your Toronto homes with slim and slick sidelights are kind of “beacon on cheese”. They act as classy complementary aspects for your house. These pieces of wafer-thin glass architecturally fitted along the sides of front doors add that extra elegance and usefulness to your front doors.
These doors with sidelights are available in a multitude of colours and wood grain textures like oak, cherry, mahogany and fir. Additionally, they can also be customized to match the architectural design of your homes; meaning, if your porch is spacious then you may ask your door manufacturer to install two external sidelights so as to lighten up your entrance. Alternatively, if you are running short on space, then you may opt to install a single sidelight on just a single panel of the door.
Conventional heavy wooden doors are really difficult to work upon. Since, the material does not provide much scope for variation and experiments with the carpenter’s creativity, an alternative was imperative to be launched. The traditional wooden or metal (iron) doors did not provide us with the facility of ‘side-ways slide’ but, the contrast is created by Fibreglass doors Toronto. Unlike the old fashioned, wooden, veneer or steel entry doors, fibreglass doors are not just trendy, but they are tough, durable, cost-effective and most importantly these doors require minimum or no maintenance.
So, you have some questions and concerns about your appliances around your home? It is not just you. Many other homeowners have these questions too. You are likely not the first person to wonder things like, why does my dishwasher smell, or why is this appliance not working the way I think it should? In this article, let’s tackle some FAQ surrounding dishwashers, and then troubleshoot some talking points.
Your dishwasher: does it have a smell to it? A rotten egg kind of smell, or perhaps an old food type of scent? Did you get the user’s manual to your dishwasher? Maybe you did, maybe you did not. Or likely you did but you did not read it cover to cover! Anyway, there is recommended care and use that is valuable to know about your particular model of dishwasher.
As a universal type of rule for most newer models, only 1 tablespoon strength dishwasher detergent is best. If you are using a two times concentrated version, then you would want to use half of a tablespoon worth per load of dishes. Read your manual or look up online what your dishwasher manufacturer recommends. If you are using too much soap, this alone can lead to a foul smelling dishwasher. There are reasons why the little door or spot on your appliance is the size it is.
Also about the smell: most recommend keeping the door open when not in use. This creates air flow and prevents any bacteria or mold type of formation from growing. We all should know by now that where it is warm, dark, and somewhere where water may by lurking, bacteria loves to grow. If leaving the door wide open is not ideal for you, even leaving it cracked about five inches or so will do some good. A bit of fresh air never hurt anyone!
What about discoloration on the seal of your dishwasher? Is it getting discolored over time, say when you bought it or purchased the house? If you have had this go on for too long, you may need the seal replaced. Contact a local honest appliance repair service to do the job for you so you know it is done correctly. If the seal simply looks “dirty” or moldy, then a good cleaning should fix it up. To prevent stinky water, or an overall smelly dishwasher, look into these two matters to better diagnose and perhaps fix your problem.
For an ordinary person, an automatic garage door opener and other household equipment such as gas, water and hydro would be somewhat similar and they would treat them in the same way. But, an expert can easily identify the difference. The fundamental dissimilarity is: garage door is a mechanical device whereas, latter items work for different purposes to keep the home inhabitable.
Though, when closer look has been taken, experts also found some similarities between garage door openers and public utility services. Both are responsible for ensuring reliability and convenience. Garage door opener just needs a person to press a button in order to open/close it similarly, a television can be switched on/off with a remote. When it comes to dependability, the garage door opener efficiently responds in the same way the light brightens the room.
When any of these equipment stop responding, people would have to face difficulties. Their daily routine tasks might be affected and they particularly have to make sure that things are solved as soon as possible and they can get back to their normal routine and work. In case of the garage door opener, it has been observed that it stops working at the worst possible time and traps car inside the garage.
The thing to keep in mind is that if the garage door stops working, the door opener would not only be the real culprit. Instead, people should have to consider the mechanism, device or the door itself as any of the parts may keep the door immovable. So, to trace the actual problems, people should start with examining the door and look for any of the following indicators to land on the root cause:
- Damaged rollers
- Blocked/bent tracking
- Broken spring
- Broken/loose cable
- Door is not aligned properly
- Door is not opening manually
- Door has been frozen shut in the winter season
Or else, if the door is opening manually, the problem would lie in the garage door opener. In this situation, people should have to check different aspects of the opener that whether it can be repaired or replacement is the only option.
- Check for the tripped circuit breaker
- Reset the unit- unplug, re-connect and try again
- Change/test remote battery in order to observe a response
- Check the electric connection
If DIY inspection has not given satisfactory result and people are still unable to find the problem, it is recommended to conslt with the experts and let them work on the project. But, homeowners should have to carefully select a service provider as there are many contractors who only claim to be experts but in reality, they are unable to do so. Following expertise should be considered while appointing a professional for garage door inspection:
- Fastens support rails as needed
- Proper tension adjustment for the cables/spring
- Regulate the close-and-open travel limits
- Safety precautions for setup and testing
- Proper electrical wiring for particular standards/codes
- Create balance between door weight and horsepower
Have you fallen in love with the look of chalk painted furniture and are ready to try your hand at doing this yourself? Finding a cheap piece of furniture and transforming it into something beautiful (and possibly sellable) is every DIYer’s dream. If you are thinking about painting some DIY chalk paint projects, you’ll want to read this first.
Should I purchase chalk paint or make it myself?
Chalk paint is a type of paint that you could make yourself using off-the-shelf ingredients. As you might expect, making chalk paint yourself costs a lot less than a name brand however, it’s messy, requires equipment and tools, and there may be a learning curve while you learn how to make the right type for you. Some DIYers find that it may be a matter of trial and error when making their own chalk paint, and getting the correct color and consistency is very important. But quart for quart, making your own chalk paint tends to be a lot less expensive in the long run.
Chalk paint, not to be confused with chalkboard paint, is a type of mineral-based paint that gives a chalky or matte appearance to furniture. It’s slightly dusty to the touch due to the ingredients. The main components in chalk paint are pigment (in the form of paint) and either Plaster of Paris, non-sanded grout or calcium carbonate for the mineral component.
Isn’t chalk paint easier to use than other paints?
Yes and no, and depends on the final look you are going for. Any vintage piece of furniture will most likely need some sort of prep work before painting. You might have a piece of furniture with a chipped veneer, gauges, holes to fill or other repair work like sanding that will need to be done first. Acrylic paint usually needs a coat of primer (chalk paint doesn’t), but acrylic may only require one or two coats. Chalk paint may require more than two coats but this depends largely on the color you are painting over and the color you are trying to achieve. Chalk painted furniture usually does better with a coat or two of wax (some paint lines suggest a layer of soft wax followed by a harder wax). This wax layer helps create a smooth surface and helps protect the paint layers. Since many chalk painted pieces are going for a shabby chic appearance, you may also want to follow the waxing with some distressing; sandpaper, chains or other materials may be used to get this distressed look. So chalk paint isn’t necessarily easier or less time consuming, but it will help you achieve the look you are going for.
How can I make chalk paint?
There are different DIY recipes out on the web for making your own chalk paint. Although the ingredients differ slightly, the key to remember is that you should not use a paint with a primer in it. The primer ingredients will not mix well with the mineral or solid materials, and you’ll end up with a semi-solid, goopy mess. Make sure you mix your supplies in a well ventilated area and since the pouring and mixing often lead to a mess, be sure you wear gloves and protect your table or area first. Here is a recipe you can try to make your own chalk paint.
When you hear the word “marble” you don’t immediately think “affordable.” It’s imported, it’s a real material, it’s heavy, it’s one-of-a-kind. But if you still love the look of marble and want to try decorating with it without spending a lot, you’re in luck. Here are some top marble-inspired projects to buy or DIY.
Faux marble contact paper
You can find marbleized contact paper in your local home improvement store, sometimes in a variety of colors. Try covering an MDF table top or shelf with this sticky paper. It won’t feel like marble, and may appear a bit shiny compared to marble, so use this on something that is small or a bit out of direct eye level.
Marble printed laminate
Laminate has come a long way since the 70’s and now you can find some fairly realistic digital images of marble printed on affordable laminate. This is a great project when you need to resurface your kitchen island or countertops, or even in the bathroom. Laminate is easy to find and purchase by the square foot.
Ask your salesperson to show you images of what you can expect the counter to look like afterward – real marble has uneven veining, laminate may not.
Marble printed tile
Inexpensive tile, for flooring, the bathroom, or countertops, can be found with printed designs that mimic the look of wood grain or real stone, like marble. The advantage is in the cost as well as the installation. Additionally this faux marble tile may be found in thin versions, which can be important for some home projects.
Other stones that looks like marble
Although an expert can spot real marble a mile away, some other less expensive types of stone can mimic the white, veined look of marble. Limestone or quartz can sometimes have a marble-esque look, and you can find it on coffee tables, tile or dining tables. When shopping for furniture with a stone top, ask the manufacturer to let you know what exactly it’s made of. This will help you know how to maintain it over time.
Digital printing has allowed manufacturers to print fabric in a huge array of realistic designs, like marble. You can look online for wholesale or fabric sold by the yard, or try shopping for already made objects. You can find marbled pillows at Madura Home for $70.
Like contact paper, you can find some great wallpaper designs printed in a marble pattern. This material would be great for hallways, bedrooms, bathrooms or entryways. Right now you can find some great wallpaper patterns at West Elm as well as wall decals from Walmart.
When you love to decorate and design your home, it’s tempting to be pulled into the direction of the latest design trend. Like fashion, home decor trends, colors and patterns are constantly changing to reflect the style of the time. But just like fashion, there are plenty of “little black dresses” that seem to never go out of style. Here are some great pieces to invest in that have stood the test of time, and may be worthwhile investments for your home.
1. Designer furniture/furnishings: This would include pieces by well-known designers like Ray and Charles Eames, Le Corbusier, or Isamu Noguchi and also furniture by well-known design manufacturers like Knoll, Herman Miller, Heath Ceramics, or Vitra. The furniture and decor created by examples such as these were not only incredibly well-designed, there is a design integrity that withstands criticism. Year after year manufactuers continue to produce these original designs to fulfill the needs of design afficianados as they know that although expensive, these are classics that can be handed down to the next generation.
Buyer beware: these are also the designs most often knocked off. Knock offs are generally less expensive due to the fact that they are poorly made, mass produced and created using inferior materials. To the trained eye, knock-offs look nothing like the original creations. If you want to buy an original be sure to do your homework. A quick search will indicate which manufacturer owns the license to produce the original design and most often these will be signed, marked or numbered.
2. Good lighting: Lighting is one of the easiest interior design tricks to employ to make your home look and feel professionally designed. Sadly, many homes aren’t built with great lighting and homeowners are forced to bring in lamps, sconces or add-ons. When choosing lighting, always look for well-made pieces that aren’t flimsy. For example, you don’t want the swinging arm lamp to break after a year or two. Look for lighting that helps illuminate the room evenly with a good shade. Choose styles that have withstood the test of time yet fit within your design aesthetic. And don’t be afraid to mix your eras: the Bubble lamps (designed by George Nelson) were originally designed in the late 1940’s but still look incredibly modern.
3. Artwork: Art is one of those interior design strategies that does not have to cost a lot of money. In fact, it can often been a great DIY project to work on. They key to making your artwork become a classic is to make sure you are choosing pieces that really reflect your personality, or the personality of your family. Jumping on a trend or simply buying posters that suit your temporary passions may not last past the next year. Pieces that tell a story, artwork from your childhood, or blown up photographs from your collection will always be cherished. The best part about artwork is that in general it’s easy to move around so make sure you experiment with rooms or walls, or even take a few pieces down for awhile and let them “rest.” And updating an older piece of art may simply require a new frame.
4. “Real” materials: Real wood, ceramic tile or terrazzo was made to last for decades (or longer). If properly maintained they could last well over 100 years. Good quality flooring will be a worth-while investment as you’ll be using materials meant to last. The same can be said for linen, marble, copper, leather, or slate. When it comes time to choose materials for your home, and you’re looking for something that will last, start with the materials that historically have lasted a long time. Think too about how the material ages over time. Leather, for example, tends to look worn in – think how great an aged leather jacket looks and feels. But cheap upholstery tends to look worn out and tired over time. In another example, marble can actually look better over time with a few marks on the surface. It’s this very patina that manufacturers try to mimic (think of pre-faded and torn denim jeans). Some materials just look better over time so keep this in mind when making big home improvement decisions.
You’re probably thinking that controlling mosquitos has absolutely nothing to do with budget decorating but guess what, it does! In fact, there are plenty of ways to control pesky mosquitos in and around your home using some clever and attractive tricks that you can make yourself.
Using essential oils
It’s long been known that the essential oils of certain plants help keep pests, like mosquitos, away. The most commonly used essential oils that help repel mosquitos are citronella (Cymbopogon, made from varieties of lemongrass) and lemon eucalyptus (Corymbia citriodora, which is a species of eucalyptus tree). Keep in mind that synthetic scents, like synthetic citronella, won’t work. In fact, you should always invest in 100% organic essential oils as they are more powerful and potent than non-organic versions. These essential oils can be used in making your own mosquito-repellant candles, tiki torches or mosquito spray. Always dilute essential oils and never put it directly on your skin.
Never use essential oils on babies or toddlers under the age of 3 and never apply it to open cuts or wounds. Pregnant women should consult their doctor first.
DIY citronella candles and torches
If you’ve ever made your own candles you know that the process is extremely easy. In fact, once you have gathered the right ingredients it’s really easy to make a whole bunch at once. Try using different types of recycled containers like tin cans or mason jars. These make great gifts too! The basic ingredients you need are:
- candle molds (container appropriate for burning candles)
- double boiler
- candle wax
- essential oil (citronella or lemon eucalyptus)
- color (you can use crayons to add color if you want)
The recipe is simple. You need to affix the wicks inside the candle holder. Next, melt the wax in the double boiler and add the scent (you can also add the colored crayon at this point). Carefully pour the liquid wax into your candle molds then let them solidify. For more details please read this tutorial here. Here’s a great video for how to make a citronella torch.
Mosquito repellent for the skin
Like the mosquito repelling candles above, you can make your own bug spray too. Keep in mind that not all repellants work for all mosquitos. The most documented type of successful mosquito repellent is still DEET, as it’s been proven to repel the most number of species of mosquitos for the longest period of time. In fact, if you’re headed to dengue or Zika prone areas you may still want to stick to the strong stuff. But if you have a mild mosquito issue you can try this more natural repellant that uses a coconut oil base and a mixture of essential oils.