it took me awhile to figure out my early fall decor, but once I did, the pieces began to fall in place. I needed a second table runner for our dining room table. It seemed like a natural progression for me from a coffee table runner trimmed in black grow grain ribbon with white polka dots to a white and black buffalo plaid table runner. The white and black buffalo check plaid runner was even easier than my first table runner. (Click HERE for the first table runner.)
The first whimsical table runner is multi-seasonal, as is the second one. I like decor items that I can mix and match and change out no matter what the season. Click HERE for tutorial.
I found black and white buffalo check plaid no pill fleece at Walmart for a very reasonable price. I was able to purchase 3 yards, at 60 inches wide for less than $15.00. I wanted a wider table runner to offset the size of the basket that I was planning to use as a daily center piece. I used my rotary cutter and mat to cut a piece of fleece 21 inches wide by 84 inches long.
The buffalo check fabric made it particularly easy to cut a straight line. The rotary cutter, cutting mat, and quilting ruler did the rest. My rotary cutter, self healing mat, and ruler are some of my favorite crafting tools. I use them for quilting, sewing, and paper crafts. The rotary cutter looks like a pizza cutter, but the blades are very, very sharp. There are several YouTube video tutorial on using a rotary cutter. Click HERE for one short video.
Here is a sampling of my rotary cutters. Rotary cutters, replacement blades, healing mats, and rulers can all be purchased at a fabric store. I watch for sales and coupons at JoAnn Fabrics and Crafts. Most people will only need one rotary cutter, but I use mine all the time and for different projects and materials. They make my crafting easier and my cutting more precise.
Once the fabric was cut, I decided to leave the long edges untouched. The rotary cutting makes such a clean edge and the fleece laid flat on my table. You have options in finishing the edges: serging the edges with a serge sewing machine, using a decorative stitch on a regular sewing machine, turing the edges and hemming, or leaving a "naked" edge. I went with the "naked" edge.
Next option was to fringe or not to fringe. Here is Option 1: The runner with a clean edge, no fridge. It hangs well and is nice and neat.
Option 2: Cut a six inch fringe, using the rotary cutter and quilting ruler as a guide. I went with option 2, as I really wanted a fringe. (I hear they are trending for 2018!) Usually, when making a fleece no-sew blanket, people cut the fringe about 2 inches wide and not it. I wanted a smoother finish with narrow strips for fringe.
I chose to use the rotary cutter and ruler to cut a six inch fringe. Each cut was about 1/8 to 1/4 inch wide. I just "eyeballed" my cuts. The rotary cutter was very helpful in making clean, precise cuts. Using the quilting ruler helped to keep the cuts square, as did the plaid of the material.
Tip: Use a strip of painter's tape to mark the cutting line. This will help you to make all of your cuts the same length and not exceed your 6 inch mark. (I thought I could do this easily, since the buffalo check plaid striping was my guide. But, alas, my mind wandered and I made one cut much longer than 6 inches. That's when I decided to use the painter's tape on the opposite edge.)
That's it! Measuring, cutting, and cutting the fringe! I am very pleased with how this turned out. I am usually the one, making something that is much more labor intensive. I stuck to my goals of keeping my early fall decor simple and elegant. In this case, the fleece fabric and buffalo check were factors in the ease of this project. I have more fleece left over from my $15.00 purchase that I can use to make pillows, placemats, and more!
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This sweet little fall vignette was as easy as 1, 2, 3!
I am not quite ready to go full on with the oranges and red colors of fall. I wanted to experiment with bringing in some creams, turquoise, and pops of apple greens (or in this case "pear green".)
After "auditioning" a few different fabrics from my fabric stash, this home decor fabric in a neutral shade with a pronounced weave texture, and just a hint of sparkle made the cut for my no sew table runner. I thought the black grow grain ribbon with white polka dots added just the right amount of whimsy to give this neutral runner some fun! The best part of this project is that it is no sew and "so-o-o-o" easy to put together!
I love the deep, rich, colors of fall, but I am reluctant to begin decorating with orange leaves, pumpkins, and acorns, too, soon. After all, it is just the beginning of September, and there is still a lot of green left where we live. So, I decided to try my hand at some "transition" decor for late summer to early fall. Pale blues, creams, and apple green are the colors I have chosen, with pops of yellow sunflowers and black grow grain ribbon with white polka dots.
One of my very favorite home decor "items" are family photos. Maybe it's because I live 800 miles from my mom and many extended family members. Maybe it's because my siblings and I "ended up at the four corners of the earth", as my parents predicted, but were truly dismayed that we fulfilled their prediction. (Actually the four of us are all in the United States, and for a few years we were all located somewhere off of Interstate 80 in various states.) Never-the-less, I had been doing a lot of "thinking" about updating family photo displays and it was finally time to get them off the floor, out of the box, and on the walls!
Do you have a vintage piece of needlework, favorite photo, decorative plate, or piece of artwork stashed away in a closet that doesn't fit your current style? You know, the one that you can't seem to part with, because your really did like it and still like it, but it doesn't "fit in" with your current decor? I had just such a piece. My brother, Tom, gave me this sweet, Hummel, needlework kit of two children peaking over the fence over 30 years ago. I had moved to Pittsburgh and was very homesick. I suspect it was his way of helping me keep myself occupied. (He's a good brother!)
I have always like this image and I spent a lot of time and effort stitching it together. It hung in our home for many years, and then it got packed away in a closet. It wasn't fitting in with our decor, but it was too, good to throw away. I came across it again recently, and began to think about what I could do to update this piece. Want to see what I did? Check out the updated, very functional, and dare I say, beautiful bulletin board in my sewing room!
Aren't these just the cutest? This is wheat grass planted in some spring pots I purchased at TJ Maxx. Wheat grass seeds or wheat grass berries as they are called can be found at some health food stores. I purchased mine from a local garden center that specializes in a wide variety of seed packets, but I just noticed that the local Giant Eagle grocery store is selling them too!
What happens when you spread out possible spring decor items, step back, and then select a favorite oldie, but goodie piece and decide to use it in a new, unexpected way? For me, it was the above very lush "Welcome Spring Bunny Centerpiece!" The lesson I learned in creating this arrangement was to respect the power of stepping back, playing with materials, and letting the pieces fall together.
Each of the above spring fever vignettes began with a cake stand. Cake stands seem to be trending now, and are available at many home decor sites. They can be used to elevate and call importance to a display. Place a favorite figurine with a few accessories on a plate stand, and in a few minutes you have a sweet arrangement. Stacks of books can be used in the same way. I wanted to have multiple cake stands without the multiple price. I was inspired by a Pinterest post to make my own cake stands. It really was very easy and quite satisfying.
These sweet, little, spring vignettes were as easy as 1,2,3 and completed with a few things that I already had in my spring decor box. Both feature the candlestick/saucer cake plates I made. This was one of the reasons I made these mini cake plates. I wanted to have multiple cake stands for display purposes, but I didn't want to the multiple price that would come with them. I was able to make 4 cake stands for the price of one! Cake plate stands are currently trending and are a great way to vary the height of a display or call attention to an arrangement. I use stacks of books for the same purpose, too.