Sofa Searching

I’m on the hunt for the perfect sofa.

We’ve had our couch for about four years now. We bought it before we even had a home to put it in and I was set on having a sectional…in dark brown. It wasn’t necessarily the worst idea ever as much as it just doesn’t work for us anymore. My style has changed plus we now have a toddler!

Since we’ve haven’t had our sofa too long I looked into just getting it reupholstered. The color is too dark and the fabric isn’t very forgiving when my two year old smears her yogurt hands all over the cushions. :) I called a half a dozen local places and was shocked and horrified at how expensive it is to reupholster! The cost would have been just a bit over what we paid for the couch. I had no idea reupholstery was so pricey! I thought about reupholstering the sofa myself for about five minutes, or even sewing a slip cover. Then, I started looking around at different sofas and thought I would save myself the trouble (and needle pricks).

So the sofa searching begins…

neutral sofa

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My first instinct is to go with some classic and simple like this neutral.

Sofa Searching - 5 beautiful sofas

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Then, I want to be brave and go for something with more character like this chesterfield. I am dying over this chesterfield guys.

Sofa Searching - 5 beautiful sofas

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The modern look and clean lines of this concave arm modern sofa caught my eye and I can see myself loving this beauty for a long time. And the color and texture of the fabric will be much more compatible with my child and her messy nature.

Sofa Searching - 5 beautiful sofas

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Similar to the other concave arm sofa, I love the lines. I think I like the three cushions as opposed to the two and this color is stunning as well.
Sofa Searching - 5 beautiful sofasvia

The uptown modern sofa isn’t my typical style but I’m so drawn to it. I love it but I think it would be challenging to work it in my home.Sofa Searching - 5 beautiful sofas

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When I started looking for a sofa my first instinct was to go snag the IKEA Ektorp slipcovered sofa. I know, it’s white – I was unsure about that too. Do I really want to constantly be washing slipcovers? I could always go for the Svanby Gray slipcovers but they are a bit darker than what I would like. It’s on the list while I think it over.

So which is your favorite? Do you have a sofa you love? Please please share!!

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Marble Painted Succulent Planter

Marble Painted Succulent Planter

Well, hello there, friends. It’s been a hectic few weeks. Two amazing trips in in two weeks have really got my head spinning! I shared a bit about my trip to Hawaii already but I also went to Atlanta for Haven Conference where I got to meet so many incredible bloggers. When I got home my head was spinning with information and I couldn’t stop thinking of all the ways to improve my blog! Now I feel like I’m finally caught up. Hooray!

So, last week I shared my aloha sign (you can catch it here if you didn’t see it.) for my powder room. I loved the color combo so much I decided to give it another go, this time in marble.

I’ve been loving the marble painted trend and have been waiting for the perfect project to give it a try on. It was so surprisingly simple and now I want to marble everything!

Marble Painted Succulent Planter

A few months ago I got a bunch of these little glass jars and they turned out to be perfect for this project. I taped off the top half of the jars because I only wanted the marble effect on the bottom half.

Marble Painted Succulent Planter

I poured a tiny bit of each color on a paper plate. I think two to three color allows for the perfect mix. Any more and it might get a bit messy.

Marble Painted Succulent Planter

I ran a wooden skewer through the paint to run ribbons of one color into the other to create the marbling effect.

Marble Painted Succulent Planter
Next, I very gently rolled the jar in the paint. I set it top down to let the excess paint drip off and allowed it to dry.

The last step was potting the succulent. I also love it as a little bud vase.

I’m working on the powder room and this cute marble succulent planter will be a great edition.

Succlent Planter

So what do you think of the marble painted succulent planter? Are you in on the marble trend? Tell me in the comments. If you have a marble painted project I’d love to see it! You can tag me on Instagram or leave me a link in the comments.

Have a wonderful and colorful day!

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DIY Hand Painted Wood Sign

Earlier this week I told you about my trip to Hawaii. I’m still dreaming about it. Since I couldn’t bring the beautiful beaches back with me I thought I should do something to bring a little bit of ALOHA into my house in the form of this hand painted wood sign.

Multicolored Hand Painted Wood Sign

I started sprucing up my powder room a few days ago when I realized I’ve had the same decor in there since my first house almost eight years ago (#didijustadmitthat #suredid). I’m planning on a colorful beachy style so I’m starting it off with this aloha sign.

Multicolored Hand Painted Wood Sign

The sign. It is just three wood planks glued together and secured using another small plank and some finishing nails.

Multicolored Hand Painted Wood Sign

The color combo. These colors are just samples that I had in my garage from previous projects. I wanted a colorful and beachy look and I love the coral, yellow, mint combination.

Multicolored Hand Painted Wood Sign

The process. The process of making the sign was really simple. Pretty much just paint brush strokes of the different colors all over the board. I started with coral. Note: If I did it again I would start with the lightest color and move on to the darkest to prevent wasting any paint.

*Make sure to allow for drying time between colors*

Multicolored Hand Painted Wood Sign

Take the second color and randomly brush on the paint to fill in some of the blank space.

Multicolored Hand Painted Wood Sign

With the third color fill in the rest of the blank space. At this point you can also paint over any space where you feel like one color is too over powering. You want to really concentrate on the middle section as that is where your lettering will be.

Multicolored Hand Painted Wood Sign

Using transfer paper I placed the vinyl lettering on the painted board. I used my Silhouette Cameo to create the vinyl lettering. The font is KG Eyes Wide Open.

Multicolored Hand Painted Wood Sign

Then I painted one coat of white paint over the entire board. After the paint dried I peeled off the vinyl lettering to reveal the perfect multicolored sign.

DIY Painted Sign

It’s just so cheerful and is a gazillion times better than that old powder room decor. I can’t wait for the rest of the space to come together. But seriously, can I just have a multicolored hand painted wood sign for every space in my house now? This was way too fun!

Happy Friday friends!

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10 TIPS to Vacation in Hawaii Like The LOCALS

 

A couple weeks ago I was in an amazing place…

HAWAII!!!

If you’ve been around awhile then you know that Matt and I used to live there. We always joke that we had a three year long honeymoon because we moved there just two days after our anniversary!

This visit to Hawaii was incredible. My husband was there on “business” so I flew out for a few days to make it a true vaca.

It was so fun to be a tourist in the island again and but have the knowledge to vacation in Hawaii like the locals!

Have you been to Hawaii? Or maybe you are planning a trip?

I thought it might be fun to reveal some of my favorite places around the island of Oahu. Some of them are tourist spots and some are off the beaten path but all were my favorites as a local!

10 TIPS to experience Hawaii like the locals

10 tips to experience hawaii like the locals

1.  Snorkel the North Shore: North Shore is known for it’s beautiful beaches and gnarly waves but we love the underwater view! Turtle Bay and Sharks Cove are our personal favorites. You will see a ton of sea life including honu (sea turtles).

2. Visit Waimea Bay Beach: This beach is my favorite one to spend the day. We would jump in the car in the morning and not get home until late afternoon. The beach is beautiful, the water is pristine and warm. People come here for picnics and family outings. There’s a nearby cliff that some enjoy jumping off (I’ve never been so brave). It gets busy and the parking area is small so you have to come early but it totally worth it.

3. Visit the Windward Side: The Windward Side of the island of Oahu was never super touristy when we lived there but I did notice that the interest has picked up. There are amazing beaches, great food, and the people are just wonderful! Be sure to check out Lanikai beach, it’s the most beautiful on the island, to me. It’s right next door to Kailua Beach Park which is great for kayaking and paddle boarding. Also, if you like breakfast, I definitely recommend checking out Cinnamon’s in Kailua. Matt loves the carrot pancakes but I just go for the coconut syrup. It’s the bomb.

4. Eat at the Kalapawai Market: This is hands down my favorite place. I get so happy when I see this adorable green little store. Whether it’s grabbing coffee in the morning or my favorite BLTA sandwich for lunch. I absolutely love stopping in; everyone is so friendly, the food is amazing, and it just has so much aloha.

5. Two words. Shrimp Truck: In my mind there is only one shrimp truck. It’s Giovanni’s. There are several along the North Shore and I think most tourists probably stop at the first one they see but if you keep along the road another few miles you’ll see Giovanni’s, recognizable by signature graffitied truck.

6. Drive the Pali Highway: The Pali Highway goes from the Windward side of the island to downtown. We lived on the windward side of the island so driving the Pali became a regular occurrence. Somehow, I forgot about how beautiful it was. The entire drive is lined with stunning landscape. Be sure to stop at the Pali lookout that overlooks the entire Nu’uanu valley, it’s breathtaking.

7. Drive Kamehameha Highway: I think the best part of Hawaii is it’s natural beauty so my favorite parts of the island are the ones where I get to just admire it. Kam Highway allows you to just that. It probably takes just about 1.5 hours to make it from the North Shore to the windward side without stopping but of course, you have to stop. There are lots of lookouts along the way as well as stunning beaches like Sandy’s and Waimanalo, both of which I absolutely love.

8. Try a hike: Locals are very active and in such beautiful weather and surroundings you completely understand why. Get your vacation exercise by trying out one of many hike options. I personally love Mokapu’u Lighthouse. It’s a fairly decent trail and is just a mile each way. The view along the way is breathtaking and certain times of year you can even see whales.

9. Eat at the Beach House: If you have room in your budget for any upscale dining make sure the Beach House at the Moana Surfrider is at the top of your list. When we lived in Hawaii this was our go to restaurant for celebrating. The charming hotel is my absolute favorite one in Waikiki. It’s right on the water, and the food is absolutely incredible.

10. Check out China Walls: Officially known as Koko Kai Beach we just call it China Walls. It’s basically a rock along the ocean so there is a bit of climbing involved but the view is absolutely beautiful. The water slams against the rock so it can get pretty slippery so definitely be careful. We used to love going there around sunset for the one of a kind view.

Have you traveled to Oahu? Share your favorite finds in the comments!

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Nautical Beverage Tray

I’ve been dying to do a DIY beverage tray for a long time now. I’ve seen some really cute stenciled trays but none were quite right.

Now that summer is here, what better time to bust out the beverage tray and pass out some yummy adult beverages?

And because I love all things nautical, I put a nautical spin on it…

Check out my DIY Nautical Beverage Tray

DIY Nautical Beverage Tray

This DIY is super easy and I was able to whip it up in just an afternoon including paint drying time.

Supplies Needed: 

A wood round

Spray Paint

Stencil

Drawer Pulls

Nautical Beverage Tray Tutorial

I sanded down the 15″ wood round that I picked up from the hardware store (I think it was about $10).

Painted Beverage Tray Tutorial

Next, I spray painted the entire piece white. This required a few coats for full coverage.

Anchor Stenciled Beverage Tray_edited-1

Then, I used my Silhouette to create a vinyl stencil for the anchors. You could also use a purchased stencil or print and cut your desired design and use that as a stencil. This project would be great for stamping as well!

After the stencil was firmly in place, I spray painted the anchors navy blue.

Anchor Beverage Tray Tutorial

After the anchors were dry, I drilled holes for the handles. The handles are just drawer pulls that I spray painted gold. Super easy and cheap trick!

Nautical Beverage Tray

This DIY makes the perfect beverage tray for entertaining this summer! Can’t you see this on your summer table? Whether relaxing or entertaining, it’s perfect for both!

Nautical Painted Beverage Tray_edited-1

Here’s some more summer projects you might enjoy:
Summer Citrus Stamped Tea Towels

Citrus Stamped Tea Towels

DIY Nautical Coasters Making Home Base5

Nautical Coasters

Summer Garland in 5 minutes

5 Minute Summer Garland

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Summer Garland in 5 Minutes

Happy Friday!

Now that summer is in full swing have you planned your summer bucket list? Your absolute to-do’s for the summer? I worked on ours this week and put them all up on my giant chalkboard. And then, it needed something special. Like something to make it feel more summery. Like  summer garland.

So, I made this summer garland in 5 minutes.

Summer Garland in 5 minutes

I kind of love any type of garland. Like any. I just want to make and put garland everywhere. Anyone else?

I had some really cute nautical inspired wrapping paper that was simply perfect for this.

Summer Garland in 5 minutes

It started with wrapping paper cut into half circles. My wrapping paper was double sided so I did larger half circles with one side and smaller half circles for the other side.

Summer Garland in 5 minutes

After the half circles were cut I hot glued them to some jute.

Summer Garland in 5 minutes

I ended up with two strands of garland, one of each design, one smaller and one larger.

Summer Garland in 5 minutes

Then I layered them on the chalkboard and secured it with some regular ol’ tape.

Summer Garland in 5 minutes

Perfect addition to my bucket list chalkboard, I think.

Summer Garland in 5 minutes

Now when I’m sitting at my desk working like crazy I can look up and be reminded of all the fun I’m supposed to be having this summer! If that’s not a motivator, I don’t know what is!

Happy summer! I hope you have a wonderful weekend!

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Easy Restaurant Dining with Toddlers at BJ’s Brewhouse

This shop is part of a social shopper marketing insight campaign with Pollinate Media Group® and BJ’s Restaurants, but all my opinions are my own. #DineInOrderAhead #pmedia  http://my-disclosur.es/OBsstV

Have you ever been at a restaurant enjoying a meal and you see a toddler in the midst of a ridiculous tantrum? If you live in Southern California there is a chance it could have been my child. Ha. Recently we’ve kind been on a hiatus from any sit down restaurant dining because my toddler isn’t all that cooperative. Truly, I can’t blame here. Most of the time the food takes way too long, when it comes out it’s piping hot so there she is with her plate of chicken fingers and can’t understand why I won’t allow her to dig in right away. Further, she hates highchairs. There aren’t enough coloring crayons on this planet to make her want to sit still in a high chair for the better part of an hour. Does this sound familiar to anyone?

Easy restaurant dining with toddlers

I missed restaurant dining and Peighton and I totally deserved a date night. Since Matt’s out of town I thought now would be the perfect opportunity to try out this new thing that one of favorite restaurants is doing. A new app from BJ’s Restaurant allows you to dine in while ordering ahead. I don’t mean just getting your name on the wait list. I mean they will actually have your order so by the time you get there, it’s ready to go into the kitchen to be prepared.

BJs Brewhouse-3-2

The Dine In Order Ahead feature was super easy to use. I downloaded the app, selected ordered ahead for dining in. I was even able to specify the time we’d be there. Perfect early dinner for me and my munchkin.

BJs Brewhouse-7-2

I went through the menu on the app and selected my order. The BJ’s favorite is my family’s favorite too! And of course no order is ever complete without a pizookie! I promptly got a confirmation email telling me that my order had been placed.

BJs Brewhouse-1

Once we arrived, I gave the hostess my name and told her that I had ordered ahead. She led us to our table quickly and soon our server was there bringing our drinks. I was his first customer using the app so we were both excited to try it out.

BJs Brewhouse-5

There was very little wait time so distracting with coloring and cho0 choo trains was sufficient. She was still coloring away when our food arrived.BJs Brewhouse-6

The was good, as always. I can never go wrong with this pizza.

BJs Brewhouse-8

Peighton agrees.

BJs Brewhouse-9

As soon as we were finished with our pizza, our waiter, Daniel brought out our pizookie. It was awesome! No waiting to order dessert. It just came right to us.BJs Brewhouse-10

Clearly this is a big hit with the little one.

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Now to my favorite part of all. While Peighton was finishing up the dessert I hopped back on the app to try out  Mobile Pay. This was awesome. Before our waiter could even bring the check (and he was fast) I was able to hop on the mobile pay and pay for our meal including gratuity. It was awesome!

Before we left I had a little chat with Daniel our server. He was so nice. We talked about the ease of the app for both of us I was telling him how wonderful it is for families with antsy kids. We both agreed that it’s pretty much a lifesaver or at least a meal saver.

Make sure you check out the new BJ’s Mobile App.  When you use it for either Dine In Order Ahead feature or the quick Mobile Pay feature, you will save $5 on your order of $20 or more!

BJ’s Mobile App is available for iPhone and Android.

 

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Southwestern Steak Salad with Fresh and Easy

This post is brought to you by Fresh and Easy

Can I just tell you about the double sided coin that is cooking for one (and a half)?

When it’s just me, I usually dread cooking for one. It’s no fun when you have to cook AND clean. ;)

But, I eat so much healthier, meal time is quicker, and because of Fresh and Easy it’s even yummier.

Southwestern Steak Salad

Fresh and Easy Steak Salad-1-7

Fresh & Easy thinks that fresh, wholesome food should be accessible and affordable to everyone. They offer a range of their own brand products and freshly prepared meals, in addition to other favorite top name brands.

Fresh and Easy Steak Salad-1-5

We love popping into Fresh and Easy! The store is smaller and has just what you need without all the fillers. That’s perfect for me because I’m a mama with limited amount of time (I’m sure you can relate) and typically I’m running in with an uncooperative toddler. The small store size ensures that I won’t be rushing around the store looking for my necessary ingredients for more time than I have! Plus their staff is so friendly and available, if I ever can’t find what I need they are there to point me in the right direction.

Fresh and Easy Steak Salad-1-4

Sometimes we run in just before heading to the beach for delicious and healthy snacks to take along.

Fresh and Easy Steak Salad-1-6

Then sometimes we run for dinner supplies. I love their ready to cook pre-seasoned meats. The yummy carne asada is perfect for my southwestern steak salad! And this creamy cilantro dressing is my all time favorite. What’s awesome about Fresh and Easy is that if it has the Fresh & Easy name on it, it’s guaranteed to be free from artificial colors and flavors, transfats, high-fructose corn syrup or any other hidden nasties that are out there. How awesome is that? It feels good to have brands you can always trust.

Fresh and Easy Steak Salad-1-3

Since there is nothing better then fresh produce – I can pick up everything I need for my southwestern steak salad in one place!

In addition to the fresh meat, they also offer fresh bread and fresh fish that is delivered fresh every day!

And for the days when cooking just seems impossible, they even have ready to go meal time solutions. Try the enchiladas. They are a fav!

Fresh and Easy Steak Salad-1-2

My southwestern steak salad was the perfect summer salad. Packed with fresh veggies from Fresh and Easy, romaine lettuce, cilantro, red onions, avocado, and black beans. Topped with the savory and lean carne asada and the creamy cilantro dressing. It’s one of my go to meals for summer! Fresh and Easy Steak Salad-1

If you are in AZ, CA, or NV be sure to check out where the nearest Fresh and Easy is located and check it out! You won’t be disappointed!

This is a sponsored post in partnership with Fresh and Easy. All opinions and love expressed for Fresh and Easy are truly my own. Thank you so much for supporting the companies that help keep Making Home Base going. You can see my full disclosure here.

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10 Tips To Spruce Up Your Rental

Happy day friends, I’m so glad you are here!

Can I tell you something? Something really exciting? I recently had the opportunity to write an article for Military Spouse magazine (!!!!). The article  published this month and it was amazing to see my words there in a magazine! If you are a mil spouse but sure to pick up the June issue of the magazine at your Commissary or exchange!

I was thrilled to write about decorating ideas for military base housing. I’m passionate about it.  After the article published I realized how much that crosses over to renters AND homeowners too.

Spruce Up Your Rental: Here’s TEN of my favorite decorating tips that will make your home feel more yours.

ten decorating tips for renters

Vintage Map in a DIY Rustic Frame

1. Fill Your Walls With Things You Love

Hanging things on the walls is my number one way to make any place feel more homey. Don’t be afraid to put nails in the walls. You can spackle later. Hanging your favorite photos of your family or places you’ve been allows you to tell a story. You want your home to tell the story of your family and all of your adventures. Wall art isn’t limited to just photos. There are many options for wall art such as framing fabric you like, or even framing a vintage map like I did.

Why We Painted Our Rental. Thinking about painting? Here's what you need to know.

2. Paint

Just because you are in a rental doesn’t meant that painting is totally out of the question. Many places now allow renters to paint with the stipulation that it must be painted back to the original color. It may be worth it to paint one room or even one wall. If you are going to be in your home for a few years it can be a great investment of your time and money. Be sure to stick with colors that aren’t too dark and be careful not to spend a bundle on the paint or supplies!

How To Make A Striped Accent Wall Without Paint3. Temporary Wall Treatments

Even if you can’t paint, there are other ways to get color on the walls. You can get vinyl decals, removable wallpaper, or even fabric for walls. Vinyl decals come in a variety of options like polka dots and stripes. All of these are great ways to get pattern and color on the wall. The best part is when it’s time, it just peels right off. You know I love temporary wall treatments because I wrote a whole post about it.

Decorating A Small Bedroom for A Little Girl

4. Hang Curtains

Most base housing doesn’t exactly have the most eye pleasing window treatments. You can cover those vertical blinds you despise by simply hanging curtains. They don’t have to be pricey. You can get a package of two panels white curtains from Ikea for less than $10. Even if white isn’t your color of choice you can easily spruce them up by painting them, adding a trim (like I did in Peighton’s room), or even sewing on a band of colorful fabric.

Painting Furniture - Mint Painted Nightstand

5. Be Bold and Paint Furniture

You can bring color into your home without putting it on the walls. One of my favorites ways is by painting furniture. Painting furniture allows you to make a statement without permanent changes to the house. It also can be very inexpensive if you find a good piece second hand. I painted an old dresser found for just $25 and turned it into a dreamy mint nightstand.

Create A Custom Chalkboard to Hide Eyesores. Awesome Idea for Renters!! via www.makinghomebase.com

6. Hide What You Don’t Like

You can hide awkward spaces easily by covering them with a curtain or a piece of fabric. It will hide the eyesore while adding a bit of color and texture. That’s not the only way to hide what you don’t like. I have an awkward cut out in the wall that connects the kitchen and living room. I covered it with an oversized chalkboard making a focal piece for my workspace.

7. Display Collections

Displaying your collections can really make your house feel like home. Items that you’ve collected over time and have significant meaning to you should always have a place in your home. I love decorating with my vintage jars and displaying my favorite vintage rolling pins.

Where To Buy Affordable Area Rugs: A Complete Buying Guide

8. Use Rugs To Hide Ugly Floors

If I could only have one accessory for the rest of my decorating life it would be rugs! Especially in base housing where the floors are less than desirable most of the time. They work to not only hide ugly floors but define a space. I rounded up some awesome and affordable rugs in this post.

DrumPendant8

9. Change Up Lighting

If you are going to be in a house for several years you don’t have to  just live with the boring and outdated light fixtures. Changing the lighting is a small way to make a big impact. With permission you can change out the fixtures. Can’t change the fixtures? Take heart, there are other options! Check out how Amy created a drum pendant light  cover up to go over her current light fixture. It’s easier than you would imagine!

repurposed planters 5

10. Outdoors

My number one way to give your porch a more welcoming look is to put something on your door! You can DIY a wreath in an afternoon. Make a craft party out of it and invite some friends over. If you prefer to leave off the wreath, try some colorful potted plants. April added some beauty by repurposing thrifted pots and planting beautiful flowers in them. That’s budget friendly and beautiful!

Small things that make a big impact whether you’re in a rental home, home for now, or forever home. You don’t have to spend a lot of money, or even a lot of time. With a little effort and some creativity you can have a home full of character that represents your family; one where you will enjoy all the time you spend in it no matter how long or short that is.

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DIY Wall Art Animal Prints with Polka Dot Mats

When I shared my daughter’s room makeover a couple weeks ago, I got a ton of questions about the animal prints above the bed. Today I’m spilling the beans on how they came to be. Here’s a quick DIY wall art tutorial for ya! DIY Wall Art Animal PrintsAfter we had completed her upholstered bed I wanted to hang some sort of wall art above it. DIY wall art was the obvious way to go since  this was a budget makeover.

Peighton is obsessed with animals! They are her absolute favorite, so I knew we had to include animals in her room somehow. I found some clip art that I was able to download for free and blow up to fit an 8 x 10 mat frame. After placing them in the frame I felt like they still needed something to make them pop. Polk dots, gold polka dots, did the trick! Let me show you how!

Polka dot mats-1

I picked up these black frames from IKEA. I think the black really pops with the bright pink.

Animal Prints with Polka dot mats

These zots found at Michaels made making glittery polka dotting a breeze!

Polka dot mats-1-3

It comes on this roll with two rows that are offset. Perfect for what I needed. I laid the strip face down and slowly peeled off the backing leaving the glue dots on the the matte. The top and bottom of the matte are wider than the sides so I cut the zots strip in half to add an extra row to both the top and bottom.

Polka dot mats-1-4

Next, I went wild with the glitter. Obviously. Ha. I just sprinkled glitter liberally over all of the dots and then shook out the left overs, tapping the back lightly to get all the loose glitter.

Polka dot mats-1-5

Now you’ve got a cute glittery photo mat.

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I placed the animal prints inside and hung them up above the bed.

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Peighton loves to point out which animal is which to us all the time.

Polka dot mats-1

I really love how the polka dot mats really tie into the polka dot sheets to make a really polished look.

If you are interested in the actual animal prints – let me know and I will email you the files! xo

 

 

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Deployment

Yesterday was a hard day.

If you follow me on Instagram you got a quick peek of my sweet baby girl saying bye bye to daddy.

You can never fully prepare for a deployment. This is our third one and it was still hard for all of us.

Peighton thought she was going with him and kept waving bye to me as he was holding her.

deployment day-1

I can hardly believe it’s been a year since he came home. It seems like it was just yesterday I was writing about his homecoming.
Me and my girl are a couple of tough cookies so we are going to be strong and hold down the fort until our sailor returns to us, even if that means ice cream for lunch some days (seriously happened yesterday!)
Everything ends, and this will too. I know that for sure.
I’ll be back to regular project posting tomorrow! Thanks for all of your support everyone! I have the best readers and friends! xo
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Picnic Ready Paper Bag Utensil Holders

Since it’s summer. And since I love picnics. I’m bringing back an oldie.

Picnic Ready Paper Bag Utensil Holder tutorial via makinghomebase.com

Last summer I shared my paper bag utensil holders. They were quite popular even though I spelled bon appétit wrong (ps. I still spelled it wrong). My guests didn’t notice. :) Regardless of my bad spelling they still make the CUTEST utensil holders for picnics! I especially love how easy they are to whip up. The only supplies required are paper lunch sacks and washi tape. The stamping is totally optional. You can do stamping, sticks, hand write your guests names, anything really.

My absolute very thing about these paper bag utensil holders is that they serve two purposes. One, they are a super cute vessel for utensils but they also make perfect little trash bags. Once you’re done with your meal, you can discard any rubbish right into the bag. No more chasing that napkin all over the park, folks!

paper bag picnic utensil holder

1. To make them you’ll need paper lunch sacks, washi tape, and an alphabet stamp.

2. Fold your paper bag from the bottom up at the seam to create a pocket.

3. Seal the side with washi tape. I did this by placing one strip of washi tape on the front allowing it to slightly hang over the edge, then put another strip on the back side so the pieces of tape stick together.

4. Do the same on the other side.

5. Stamp your saying onto the front pocket. I used “Bon Appétit” but I think other cute sayings are “Let’s Eat” or “Chow Time”

6. Stuff with your napkin and utensils

Picnic Ready Paper Bag Utensil Holders

I really look forward to making a gazillion of these this summer for all sorts of beach trips and picnics with friends. Can you just imagine all the fun color combos?

Picnic Ready Paper Bag Utensil Holders

Enjoy!

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Summer Celebration LINK PARTY

It’s A Summer Celebration LINK PARTY!

We’ve been celebrating summer all week by sharing brand new summer inspired projects. Now, it’s your turn! Link up your summer DIYs, home decor, food, and crafts. Any and all things SUMMER. Don’t have a blog? You can still party with us! Share photos of your summer projects on Facebook and Instagram using the hashtag #summercelebration

summer celebration 4

Before we get to the party, check out these awesome summer projects!

Monday Collage

Tuesday Collage

Wednesday Collage


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5 Characteristics of a Viral Pin

5 Characteristics of a Viral Pin | Just a Girl and Her Blog for Making Home Base

Hi there, Making Home Base readers! I’m Abby from Just a Girl and Her Blog, and I am so grateful to the amazing Miss Chelsea for letting me take over her blog today! It’s a pretty exciting day at my house. Not only is it my 30th birthday (yikes!), but I am also launching my very first eBook! (yikes again!) Several months ago, around my first blogiversary, I started getting a steady stream of emails asking me for blogging advice. At first I couldn’t believe that people were asking little old me for advice about their blogs. What did I know? But as the emails kept coming and I began answering each one, I started to realize that maybe I had picked up a thing or two about this blogging stuff. Recognizing a need for a comprehensive blogging resource, I began writing what became Building a Framework: Everything I Learned My First Year of Blogging. My goal was to create a reference for new bloggers who were unsure of how to get started and also to give a behind-the-scenes look to people who are blogging already and might be looking for different strategies to use to grow their blogs.

Building a Framework by JustAGirlAndHerBlog.com

One of the areas I definitely wanted to be sure to cover was Pinterest. As bloggers, we LOVE Pinterest. Not only is it a great way to get our work out there for people to discover, but it is also an awesome source of inspiration and a fabulous one-stop-shop for creative ideas. I lay out my entire Pinterest strategy in the eBook, but today I wanted to talk about some common characteristics that I see in pins that go viral. Now obviously every post that does well on Pinterest will not have the same attributes, but there are a few trends that I’ve noticed that I try to consider when putting together my posts. Let’s start with the content of the post…

1) The post is beneficial to others. Many of the posts that have done well for me and that I’ve noticed are popular for other bloggers are the “how-to” posts, posts that teach people how to do something useful. Last year, for example, I wrote a post on how I patched and painted all of the baseboards in my house. I thought it would be a pretty boring post, but apparently there are a lot of people who want to know how to paint baseboards! That post has been pinned over 27,000 times as of the date of this writing, and it is still one of my most read posts almost a year later.

The Beginner's Guide to Painting and Patching Baseboards by Just a Girl and Her Blog

2) The post is simple and actionable. People can follow the tutorial themselves without too much effort. Chelsea’s Citrus Stamped Tea Towels are a perfect example of this. It’s a simple concept, and she shows it done beautifully, so pinners will see it, love it, and feel like they can replicate it themselves. Her stamped towels have almost 7,000 pins as of the date of this writing, and she only posted them a few weeks ago!

DIY Colorful Citrus Stamped Tea Towels

Sometimes I get frustrated when I post a room reveal because oftentimes a smaller project within the room will end up being more popular than the room itself! Why? Because people feel like they can complete the smaller project themselves, while an entire room makeover might be more overwhelming or just not their exact style. This happened with my recent home office reveal; the reveal itself was somewhat popular with 3,000+ pins, but a project I did within the room, adding crown molding to plain bookshelves, blew the reveal out of the water with 11,000+ pins to date!

How to Add Crown Molding to Plain Bookshelves by Just a Girl and Her Blog

3) The pinned graphic tells a clear story. People want to know what they’re looking at and why it benefits them. Chelsea hit the nail on the head with this in her post “Where to Buy Affordable Decorative Pillows Online.” Not only was her post beneficial to others (it’s a great resource for finding inexpensive, pretty pillows) and actionable (readers can go right out and buy them based on her suggestions), but she created a really great graphic to go with her post.

Where to Buy Affordable Decorative Pillows Online by Making Home Base

Pinners are immediately drawn in by all of the pretty pillows she chose to feature, and her large caption tells them exactly what they’re getting– a list of places where they can buy these pretty pillows inexpensively. Clearly this was a successful post and graphic for Chelsea; it has been pinned over 62,000 times already!!

4) The pin is in the right place at the right time. I use a service called Viraltag to schedule my pins to group boards where they’ll get more exposure than on my own Pinterest boards. Sadly, Viraltag recently stopped adding small business accounts and only offers a $99/month plan, but if you’re interested in scheduling pins, there are other services, such as Ahalogy, that will help you do so. Chelsea actually played a big role in helping me develop my current pin-scheduling strategy, and I am so thankful for that! On the day a post goes live, I will go into Viraltag and schedule a pin for 9:00 am-ish, 2:00 pm-ish, and 10:00 pm-ish EST to three of my larger group boards. I do the same thing the next day, pinning to three different group boards. After that, I schedule the post to pin to a different group board once every 4-6 days between 10 pm and 12 am when a lot of people are pinning. I usually like to try to have the post pinning for two months or so. {So I end up pinning to 20-30 group boards when all is said and done.}

5 Characteristics of a Viral Pin | Just a Girl and Her Blog for Making Home Base

Of course there are are exceptions. At Christmas, for example, I might have a post pin once a day for 15 days rather than once every four days for two months so that the post gets out before the holiday season is over. Is this a one-size-fits-all strategy for every single blogger? No. You’ll have to test your boards to see what works best for you, but since I’ve been using this strategy, I’ve seen a definite jump in traffic from Pinterest, and my posts have amassed thousands and thousands of pins. Yippee! {If you want to know even more about my pin-scheduling strategy, go check out my book! I have even more tips and tricks in there! #shamelessplug ;) }

5) I have help. I say it over and over again in Building a Framework: relationships with other bloggers are so, SO important!!! Blogging is best done in community; you can accomplish waaaaaaaaaayyyy more with a group of bloggers than you can alone. I am involved in several blogging Facebook groups where we help share each others’ pins to our big group boards at prime pinning times. I can pin my own stuff all I want, but if 10 other people are pinning my posts as well, they’re going to go a lot farther and be exposed to more pinners. Find your “people,” help each other out, and get pinning!

As I said at the beginning of the post, there is not one cookie cutter way to write a post to make it go viral on Pinterest. Sometimes it’s the posts that we least expect that make it big. In my experience, though, the pins that have the characteristics listed above tend to do well and bring in the traffic!

Pinterest is only one of the many, many areas I touch on in Building a Framework. I cover everything from the initial blog setup and improving content to making money and working with brands. I share exactly how I use and grow each of my social media outlets and reveal the strategy I used to get 4,000 newsletter subscribers in three months. If you’d like to find out more, head over to the blog to see the full table of contents, hear what bloggers who’ve read Building a Framework are saying, and even read a sample chapter! Hope to see you there!!

Thank you again to Chelsea for having me on her blog today, and thank YOU for reading! Have a wonderful week!

Guest Post Sign-Off

 

Wow! Wasn’t that great! Abby is one of my dearest blog friends, I’m so thrilled that she wanted to take the time to share such awesome information here at MHB. Folks, if you are a blogger or have been interested in starting a blog, or maybe you are just interested in what goes into writing a blog, head over and check out Abby’s book. It’s truly a priceless resource!

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Outdoor Drink Station

You guys!!!

It’s finally summer! My friend April, from House By Hoff, and I got together again to host this awesome summer series! Our second annual Summer Celebration is here! That means we’ve got 20 bloggers that are going to be sharing awesome summer projects over the next three days! Then, on Thursday, ALL 20 will be hosting a HUGE summer inspired link party! I know. It’s going to be awesome!

Outdoor Drink Station and MORE summer ideas #summercelebration

I’m so happy to be kicking everything off today with my Outdoor Drink Station!

Outdoor Drink Station and MORE summer ideas #summercelebration

Nothing says summer more than outdoor parties and cool beverages!

Outdoor Drink Station and MORE summer ideas #summercelebration

For us that means lots of sweet and tangy fresh squeezed lemonade!

Outdoor Drink Station and MORE summer ideas #summercelebration

We love being outdoors in the summer. Whether it’s full blown get togethers with friends or just an evening with just the family, we love summers outside! And how much fun is this outdoor drink station? And it’s very simple to put together!

Outdoor Drink Station and MORE summer ideas #summercelebration

Since we don’t have a outdoor bar, I used a vintage dresser. I think it gives a great sophisticated look.

Outdoor Drink Station and MORE summer ideas #summercelebration

Outdoor Drink Station and MORE summer ideas #summercelebration

You have to have fruit to add to your lemonade. My favorite is always blackberries and strawberries so that’s what we had but you can use any fruit you like.

Outdoor Drink Station and MORE summer ideas #summercelebration

And what fun is a summer beverage without a striped paper straw?

Outdoor Drink Station and MORE summer ideas #summercelebration

An outdoor drink station is such a fun way to serve summer drinks at any event summer. Next, I’m trying a sweet tea drink station  :)

Are you ready to kick off your summer in style?

Here are even more ideas to celebrate summer in style.

Outdoor Drink Station and MORE summer ideas #summercelebration

You can join us in the summer celebration by using the hashtag #summercelebration on Instagram!

Happy Summer!

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IKEA HACK – DIY Upholstered Headboard from the IKEA TARVA bed

This post includes affiliate links

Get ready to pin ya’ll! You guys are going to want to save this tutorial for later! I’m spilling all the details on the DIY upholstered headboard today!

DIY Upholstered Headboard from IKEA Tarva Bed

Remember a month or so ago, when I shared my inspiration for Peighton’s room? I had this beautiful bed picked out but it was WAY out of my price range.  I had also put together a collection of awesome IKEA bed hacks that totally inspired me! So I decided to do IKEA bed hack of my own and do a DIY upholstered headboard in pink!
DIY Upholstered Headboard from IKEA Tarva BedAnd since we already had the IKEA TARVA bed in Peighton’s room – I wanted to just go ahead and use it but zhush it up with a pretty headboard. The IKEA TARVA bed is relatively cheap, just $70. They have an even cheaper wood bed (around $30) available but my store was completely out of stock, so TARVA it was.

Products We Used:

Jig Saw

Electric Staple Gun ( I like this upholstery staple gun)

Wood Glue

Hammer and Nails

Rubber Mallet

Large Piece of Ply Wood or MDF (size will vary. Measure the wide of current headboard for proper width +desired height)

1 Twin Sized Egg crate Foam Padding

2 yards of Fabric (Canvas – I used this Fuchsia Fabric)

2 yards of quilt batting

Fabric Glue

Brass Nailhead Trim

First thing is first – Iron your fabric – it will be a total pain but it’s going to be worth it to get nice smooth lines.

DIY Upholstered Headboard from IKEA Tarva Bed

First you’ll need to decide the shape of your headboard. I googled “Upholstered Headboard” and scrolled through thousands of images before deciding on my shape. I wanted something I could easily free hand. For the design, I grabbed a brown paper bag, carefully pulled it apart into one long piece, and then folded it in half. Then I traced half of my design starting at the fold. Once it was perfect I cut it out, unfolded it, and laid it on my piece of wood to trace.

DIY Upholstered Headboard from IKEA Tarva Bed

Once I was happy with the traced design, Matt got out the jigsaw and cut the wood along my traced lines created the headboard shape.

DIY Upholstered Headboard from IKEA Tarva Bed

Not bad!

DIY Upholstered Headboard from IKEA Tarva Bed

Note: If you are buying an IKEA bed specifically for this purpose don’t put it completely together! We had the bed for some months before taking on this task so we had to remove the headboard to attach the piece of wood.

Next, using wood glue attach the piece of wood to the front of the TARVA headboard. Use clamps to hold the two pieces together.

DIY Upholstered Headboard from IKEA Tarva Bed

Once the wood glue is dry, you can secure it with finishing nails.

DIY Upholstered Headboard from IKEA Tarva Bed

Next is the padding. Cut the padding to the shape of your headboard. And use fabric glue to attach the egg crate padding to the front of the headboard.

DIY Upholstered Headboard from IKEA Tarva Bed

After the padding is on, you can add the layer of batting. Using your electric staple gun, pull the batting taut and staple to the back side of the headboard.

DIY Upholstered Headboard from IKEA Tarva Bed

The front of your headboard will look like this. It’s ready for the fabric.

Using the same technique, making sure the fabric is nice and taut staple the fabric to the back side of the headboard. I found that start on one side and moving up the side of the headboard was the best way to get the least amount bunching. Going around the curves, make a few snips in the fabric on the back of the headboard to allow you to pull the fabric as tight as possible.

DIY Upholstered Headboard from IKEA Tarva Bed

A note about nailhead trim. This was my very first project using nailhead trim (way to be adventurous right?). You’ll want to use a ruler/yardstick to keep it straight – I didn’t and wish I had. Also the trim bends and turns so you don’t have to cut each piece as you move along.

DIY Upholstered Headboard from IKEA Tarva Bed

Every few “nailheads” there is one with a hole where the actual nailhead hammers in. Use a rubber mallet when hammering in these guys and be gentle, the heads can pop right off if you hammer too hard.

DIY Upholstered Headboard from IKEA Tarva Bed

After the nailhead trim was complete we simply placed the headboard back on the bed.

DIY Upholstered Headboard from IKEA Tarva Bed

This DIY upholstered headboard ended up being a great day project for us and ended up saving us a small fortune! Now we get the luxurious and sophisticated look of a fabulous upholstered headboard at just a fraction of the cost! That’s winning if you ask me!!

Thank you so much for visiting today!! Have a great weekend! xo

If you like this project, check out the full room reveal here.

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Little Girls Bedroom [Source List]

This post contains affiliate links

I’m so glad you all are enjoying Peighton’s new room! It’s definitely my favorite place to be right now. Sometimes I just want to go sit in the chair with my feet up on that adorable pouf and pretend it’s my room. If you missed it – you can catch it here.

Here at Making Home Base I like to really challenge myself and make every project or every room as budget friendly as possible. We almost never buy anything new and when we do it’s usually on the cheaper end of the market, like IKEA. Peighton’s room was really no different. I managed to pull off this complete makeover for around $300. Almost all of the big furniture was DIYed or we already had it so we didn’t purchase any high dollar items. Then the accessories and details were found on the cheap or also DIYed.

If you’ve been interested in where everything in the room came from – then today’s for you! I’m going to share my source list for pretty much everything in this little girls bedroom! Plus you get a little close up of some of the details – which I love.

Decorating A Small Bedroom for A Little Girl

Sources:

Animal Prints – DIY (tutorial coming soon) but frames are from IKEA

Upholstered Headboard – DIY (tutorial coming soon)

Polka dot sheet set – Land of Nod

Duvet Cover – IKEA

Pink Pillow with the gold ribbon – DIY (let me know if you are interested in a tutorial for this one and I can share it)

Decorating A Small Bedroom for A Little GirlDrapes – IKEA but I added the pom pom trim

Yellow/Gold Rug – RugsUSA

White Shag Rug – RugsUSA

Floor Pouf – Target

Velvet Pink Pillow Cover – IKEA

Book Shelves – IKEA

Baby Doll – Land of Nod

Also, The Cat At Night is Peighton’s absolute favorite book, if you have a little one who loves animals scoop up this book!

Decorating A Small Bedroom for a Little Girl Lamp Base – Target

Lamp Shade – Target + added pom pom trim

Pink and White Tray – IKEA

Potted Plant – IKEA

Pink Agate – Home Goods

Gold Dog Silhouette Wall with Walls Need Love

Gold Dog Silhouette DecalsWalls Need Love

Decorating A Small Bedroom for a Little Girl

Geometric Watercolor Art – Home Goods (awesome deal at $19.99)

Giant zinc “2″ – Home Goods
Little girl's bedroom

The brass deer – thrifted

Pink and gold Prints – DIYs from gift bags found at Home Goods

Pink Boxes – IKEA

Zinc “P”  - Local gift shop

White Horse – Dollar Tree

That’s about it! If you see something that I didn’t mention just comment below and I’ll be sure to share. Stay tuned for tutorials of the DIY projects this week!

 

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Decorating A Small Bedroom – Little Girl’s Room

It’s makeover reveal day!

Y’all, I am so excited about this space! If you recall a few weeks ago I shared the before of my daughter’s room. I was really nervous about decorating a small bedroom because we need lots of storage without feeling cramped. The room was half nursery/half toddler’s room and lacked character. Well, all that has changed now!

When I was preparing to decorate her small bedroom I wanted it to be a space that she could grow into, something cute and girly but still a little sophisticated. I played around with a lot of different color schemes before settling on the bright pink with gold accents and it turned out to be perfect for this space!

Before we jump into the new look let’s take a quick peek at what it looked like before.

P's room before

Yikes right?!

Now for the after!

Decorating A Small Bedroom for A Little Girl

(!!!)

This whole room truly was a labor of love. This space is a very small bedroom so I wanted to add a lot of color  and texture to take the focus off it’s small size. The first thing we did was paint the room. As you can see in the before, the color of the room did nothing for the space. It was really bland (which is what you would expect in a rental). We made the decision to paint the room a beautiful shade of gray. To help me with color selection, I used the Chip It!® tool, which instantly transforms any picture into a paint palette using more than 1,500 Sherwin-Williams paint colors. I decided on SW 7023 Requisite Gray, it’s from the Softer Side Color Collection in the HGTV HOME™ by Sherwin-Williams collection. Don’t you love it?

Gold Dog Silhouette Wall with Walls Need Love

On one wall we opted for these fun doggy decals instead of painting.

Gold Dog Silhouette Wall with Walls Need Love

P loves dogs so it was the perfect fit for her space.

Decorating A Small Bedroom for A Little Girl

RUGS! I couldn’t wait to throw down a rug to cover up the gray carpet. love this yellow trellis rug. It has a hint of gold that ended up being perfect for the look I was going for. I layered it with this white shag rug that was already in her room. I think it gives it a more luxurious feel.

Decorating A Small Bedroom for A Little Girl

And this little diva needed a fabulous bed to go with her new space! I can’t wait to show you how we DIYed this upholstered headboard!

Pink and white girls room

And can we talk about that pouf? I found it at Target on clearance and the colors are perfection.

Decorating A Small Bedroom for A Little Girl

We ended up using the same dresser and just painted it again. I’m super attached to it because it was the first piece of furniture we bought for her when I was pregnant so I hope to keep it for many years to come. The color is SW 7004 Snowbound. I thought it might be too big now that she has the twin bed but I think it works nicely.

Decorating A Small Bedroom for A Little Girl

And check out where the mint nightstand

ended up!!! She got placed in here after I started making changes in my master bedroom. I didn’t want to use it in the master, but I also wasn’t ready to get rid of it. I’m so glad I didn’t because it fits in perfectly in the little girl’s room.

Decorating A Small Bedroom for A Little Girl

It’s officially my favorite room in the house. Peighton, if you’re looking for me I’m probably hanging out in your room ;)

Thank you so much to Sherwin-Williams for sponsoring this makeover. It’s the perfect little space for our little lady.

For more beautiful home eye candy, you can follow Sherwin-Williams on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, YouTube and Instagram. Sherwin-Williams is giving away a $50 gift card to one lucky winner, all you have to do is tell me, what room would you make over with Sherwin-Williams?

Click here for the shopping source list, also check back for Tutorials for the DIY headboard and more!

Sweepstakes Rules:  No duplicate comments. You may receive (2) total entries by selecting from the following entry methods:   1.     Leave a comment in response to the sweepstakes prompt on this post 2.     Tweet (public message) about this promotion; including exactly the following unique term in your tweet message: “#SweepstakesEntry”; and leave the URL to that tweet in a comment on this post 3.     Blog about this promotion, including a disclosure that you are receiving a sweepstakes entry in exchange for writing the blog post, and leave the URL to that post in a comment on this post 4.     For those with no Twitter or blog, read the official rules to learn about an alternate form of entry. This giveaway is open to US Residents age 18 or older. Winners will be selected via random draw, and will be notified by e-mail. The notification email will come directly from BlogHer via the sweeps@blogher email address. You will have 72 hours to respond; otherwise a new winner will be selected.   The Official Rules are available here. This sweepstakes runs from 6/2/2014-6/22/2014. Be sure to visit the Sherwin-Williams brand page on BlogHer.com where you can read other bloggers’ posts!

Sharing this project at Savvy Southern Style, Liz Marie Blog

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