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Tuesday
Aug282018

diy myrtle topiary

I love, love, LOVE myrtle topiary; I think they may, quite possibly, be the chicest house plant, as much for the texture as the shape and pop of green, but despite my best efforts (or the $$$ I've spent buying them in the first place), I've never been able to keep one alive for more than a month.  While I've never really been one for fake plants or flowers, I just couldn't justify spending more money on another live topiary, only to have it up and die on me shortly after, so I have been on the hunt for a pretty good fake myrtle topiary for a while now (no judging).  I always came up empty-handed, so I figured...how hard could it be to make one myself?  The answer, as it turns out, is much easier than I thought! 

The hardest part was finding legit-looking greenery.  I ended up using these from Hobby Lobby; I like how the pieces kind of fall down and hide the top of the stick and the wire I used to adhere it.  All I did was use wire cutters to cut individual pieces and then wrapped the pieces with green floral wire tightly around a stick from my yard.  Stick it into a piece of floral styrofoam in a pot, cover the base with moss and you're set! 

I got a lot of questions about the pot I used for this when I posted a snap on my Instagram stories and it's another quick project that couldn't be easier!  I spray painted an inexpensive terra cotta pot with gray spray paint in a satin finish.  Once it was dry, I whitewashed a little watered down white paint and then wiped it back with a clean cloth.  Once that step was dry, I dry brushed a little white paint.  You can see a step-by-step tutorial for this with furniture here; it's the exact same process I used this time, too. 

I still love fresh greenery, house plants and flowers (we all know I can't live without hydrangeas all over the house!) but I think a faux project like this one works here because it isn't over the top (and no one gets close enough to be able to tell that it's not real).  If anyone stumbles across a very convincing fake, pretty please share!  In the meantime, this will do!

Thursday
Aug232018

hamptons handpoured + a giveaway!

I can't remember the last time I went an entire day at home without lighting a candle.  I keep one on my mantle where it's out of my littles' reach and when I'm done running errands for the day, lighting it is the first thing I do before anything else.  I'm always on the hunt for affordable, soy-based candles that smell amazing so, I was thrilled to discover Hamptons Handpoured, an East Hampton-based candle company created by a Hamptons' native to merge her love of interior design and wellness. 

Each and every candle is hand poured and uses American grown, natural soy and plant-based fragrance oils. I love that each scent that is used tells the story of life on the East End!  The candles burn so well and smell absolutely AMAZING and, an added bonus-the packaging blends in so well with the rest of my decor.

I've been burning Bridgehampton nonstop in the kitchen lately; the mix of lime, arugula and honeysuckle is so fresh but still light, which I love because it's not competing with whatever I'm cooking.  Southampton has taken up permanent residence in my bathroom; I burn it after the kids have gone to bed and I get a chance to take a hot shower after a long day.  With cotton, gardenia and white tea undertones, it smells just like freshly laundered linen!  East End is probably my most favorite because it smells exactly like the sea!  

I'm so excited to have teamed up with Hamptons Handpoured on Instagram to give away one of their candles of your choice!  So, hop on over to Instagram (@bungalowblue) and tag a friend for a chance to win! 

Tuesday
Aug072018

5 favorite (and easy!) summer-inspired diy's

My idea of the perfect DIY is one that is easy, inexpensive, relatively quick to execute and doesn't look like something you actually made yourself.  (Had to add that last part because it's so true!!)  If you're in the mood for some easy, summer-inspired DIY's to try, I've got a few for you that will have your friends and guests wanting to know your secrets!  I've blogged about these before, but I thought it would be fun to update the list and add a couple new favorites:

This rope-wrapped vase is one of my favorite diy's, as much for the fact that it's INCREDIBLY easy as it is because it looks so beautiful with simple summer blooms! I made a bunch of these for the centerpieces at my cousin's wedding in Newport, Rhode Island, a couple years ago and they looked absolutely AMAZING  filled to the brim with blue and white hydrangea! 

Turn 12 feet of rope from Lowe's or Home Depot into a nautical addition to a bookshelf or coffee table in minutes, or, impress your friends with mini versions of these monkey's fist knots to take home as favors from your next barbeque or get together!  I made a few of these to give away as prizes for the games at my baby shower a few years ago and I'm still getting compliments and comments on them!

Two quick, light coats of liquid gold leaf turn these oyster shells into chic salt and pepper shakers that will have everyone raving at your next dinner party!  I found the mini spoons on clearance at Sur la Table and sprayed the shells with a coat of food safe poly before filling them with salt and pepper.

Give your gallery wall a little refresh and add some texture and softness to your favorite photos or artwork by gluing linen fabric to plain white mats.  These were the perfect addition to a few favorite pieces of art on the gallery wall in Lydia's nursery; I spray painted the frames high gloss white and love the contrast!

My hubby made the oversize Versailles planters that flank my front door for Mother's Day a couple years back and they are still one of my favorite gifts ever.  While this isn't exactly something you could just whip up in less than a half hour like the rest of my picks here today, it's one of my favorite diy's for the fact that these are HUGE and bring so much drama and interest to my front porch (and they look amazing with bright green ferns), but the cost to make these is a fraction of what it would cost to buy something of similar size. 

What are some of your favorite DIY's to do in summer? 

Friday
Jul272018

deb achak: ebb and flow

If you've been following here for any length of time, you know that I have a weakness for/mild obsession with oversize photographic prints of the sea, so it was only fitting that I would fall head over heels in love with Seattle-based photographer Deb Achak's Ebb and Flow series.  And since we are about to head back to the beach, I can't think of a better time to post! 

Taken off the coast of Maui and the Amalfi Coast of Italy, the shots are from the vantage point of the swimmer's eye, which I absolutely LOVE, and the colors are absolutely stunning!  Can you just imagine the dramatic impact one of these prints would make in a room on a very large scale?  I have been following Deb for a while on Instagram and have particularly enjoyed all the snaps she's shared on her stories of her recent trip back to Italy; her feed is full of so much inspiration, she's definitely one to follow!  In the meantime, here are a few of my favorites from her Ebb and Flow series

And just to see how amazing these prints truly are on a large scale, here are a few snaps from her Instagram.  Most are in her all-white studio, which make for the perfect backdrop for her beautiful prints:

Happy Hump Day!

Monday
Jul232018

woven drinkware - where to find

One of the questions I get asked the most whenever we have people over is where I found my woven drinkware.  Of all the things in my entertaining arsenal, these are definitely one of my favorites because they're as pretty as they are versatile!  I serve cocktails and even wine in the summer in the double old fashioneds and I use the drinking glasses for water every single day.  An added bonus is how pretty they look on the table or a makeshift bar setup and they add so much texture and interest to all the white dinner and serveware in my glassfront cabinets. 

I actually have collected two full sets of these over the years - the lighter ones are from HomeGoods and the darker double old fashioneds and taller drinking glasses are from Tuesday Morning!  I even found the matching carafes and pitchers, so it's definitely worth a quick stop in if you have one locally!  I recently just picked up another six of the drinking glasses for $4 a pop, so I know that they're still around.  But just in case you don't have a store locally or haven't been able to find them, here are a few other links to all of the ones I have:  

World Market has the best prices that I was able to find online; they have a set of four double old fashioneds for $28 and a set of four highballs for $32.  And here is the rattan pitcher I found that match my darker set.  The wine carafe comes in both light (here) and dark (here). 

These look amazing paired with water hyacinth chargers, patterned napkins and bamboo cutlery and are my favorite way to dress up your basic every day dinnerware!  

Happy shopping and Happy Monday!