Posted by Alyssa on July 19, 2018
The front porch of your house can make or break your home’s curb appeal. Having a porch that is welcoming, fits the style of your home, and decorated in your personal aesthetic will make your home stand out in your neighborhood. No matter the size of your porch put a little thought into how you would like to decorate it and make it happen this summer. You won’t regret the time you put into it whenever you pull up to your house! Check out some of these porch decor ideas and see if there is something you can use on your own front porch.
Porch Decor Ideas
One of the first things you can do to change up your front porch is to paint your front door. If you’re feeling brave, go for a bold color. You’ll love the pop it will give to your home! Even if the thought of a bright front door is too intimidating, a fresh coat of paint will give your front door and your front porch the facelift it needs.
via Southern Living
If you have a small front porch and don’t have room for any front porch furniture, get a couple of flower pots and fill those things up! Flowers will brighten your porch and create a homey look.
For large porches, think about including seating options. Put out a bench, a couple of outdoor chairs, or even a small outdoor loveseat and invite your neighbors over!
With front porches that have sturdy ceilings, make your front porch as classic as possible by installing a front porch swing. Add a couple of outdoor pillows, make yourself some lemonade, and get ready to relax.
Even if you can’t fit furniture or would rather keep things simple, consider changing out your light fixtures, hardware, and house numbers. Just changing out these small things will update your home and personalize your front porch.
via Martha Stewart
Finally, don’t forget to include seasonal touches to your front porch. Pumpkins in the fall, a wreath during the winter, or a flag during July will make your home feel festive and cared for.
What are some of your ideas for front porch decor?
Posted by Alyssa on July 18, 2018
If you're curious about how to tile a backsplash, look no further. Adding a tile backsplash, whether it is glass, ceramic, or natural stone, to your kitchen or bathroom will immediately make the room feel more complete and finished. It may seem daunting to think about doing the tiling yourself, but don't get scared! You'll be able to save yourself a lot of money if you install the backsplash yourself. If you're interested in knowing how to tile a backsplash or are wanting to see if it's something you'd be able to do, check out this video below.
How to Tile a Backsplash: Pro-Tips
- Prepare surface by filling or sanding if necessary
- Make sure you use a level and follow that line because your counter/cabinets may not be level
- Start tiling from the bottom and put your cut tiles at the top - they won't be seen as much up top
- Use your field tile as an edger - it's cheaper than buying tile specifically made for edging
- Don't force tile through tile saw - you will chip it or break it
- Mesh-backed tile makes it easy to cut around obstacles such as electrical outlets
- Back-butter your tile in hard to reach spaces - this means to put the adhesive on the tile - not the wall
- Choose a sanded grout or un-sanded grout based on your tile choice
- Ask your tile retailer if you need sealant
- Remember the peanut butter rule - adhesive and grout should be the consistency of peanut butter
- Grout all seams except for the bottom seam of the tile - that seam will be caulked
- You might need longer screws for your wallplates on your electrical outlets due to the new depth of the wall
Have you ever tiled something? Let us know how it went!
Posted by Alyssa on July 17, 2018
I didn’t realize this when my daughter was just a baby, but now that she has all of the sudden become a little kid, I’m realizing how hard is is to keep her room organized! We don’t have space for a designated playroom so her room not only has the usual bedroom stuff, it also has all her toys. Somehow she has collected way more toys than I thought she would ever have, and I have no idea where they came from. Does anyone else feel that way? Anyway, I’ve decided it’s time to get serious about organizing her room and have done some research. If you’re interested in kid room organization, here’s what I’ve found out.
Before you even start working on an organization system, go through everything that is in your child’s room. Go through toys and get rid of or donate anything that isn’t played with or that is worn or broken. This will get you to the starting point to actually get your kids' room organized.
via Life With 4 Boys
Obviously, you will need storage options. Make use of bookcases or storage benches to keep less played with things out of sight. Baskets and clear boxes are great options that will (hopefully) keep your kids from dumping everything out just to find one toy.
via The DIY Mommy
Label everything! For kids who are too young to read, include pictures. If your kids know where their shoes, toys, shirts, pants, socks, etc. belong they’ll at least know where they should be putting them.
Think like a kid when you start organizing. Get on their level and think through how they play, what they can reach, and what objects they go for most consistently. If you make it easy for them, there won’t be an excuse to not keep things in order.
How have you kept your kids' rooms organized?
Posted by Andie on July 16, 2018
Last week, we moved for the 8th time....
In case you're wondering, we've been married for 8 years.
Yeah. You'd think by the pattern we've established that we love moving or something. In reality, I LOATHE it. While we don't plan on moving again for a very long time, my husband and I have become somewhat expert when it comes to packing, moving, and unpacking a house by ourselves. I've tried everything! I've read tons of interesting ideas about color coding boxes for certain rooms, but to be honest, that was way too intense for my style and didn't really work for me. Here are 5 simple, yet fail proof moving tips that have worked wonders for me, and will for you too!...
1. Get Rid of Your Crap!
The last thing you want is to spend time, energy & resources hauling your trash and junking up your new place right away. If you have the luxury of starting a month or so before your move, you can methodically go through every room, closet and cupboard. If not, simply trash stuff as you are packing! If you haven't used something in over a year, toss it or donate it. You'll be SO glad you did this when you start with a clean slate in your new home.
2. Wrap Dishes in T-shirts, Dish Towels, and Blankets.
Packing paper is so expensive. Don't waste your money on it! I didn't learn this until a couple moves ago, and wish I would have figured it out sooner. Instead of wrapping dishes and fragile items in packing paper, simply wrap them in t-shirts, dish towels, and even blankets! They are just as protected (maybe even more so) and you kill two birds with one stone!
3. Keep Your Clothes on Hangers
This is a game changer, guys. Don't mess with taking every item of clothing off of it's hanger and wasting precious moving boxes, because you'll just have to spend time hanging them all up again! Instead, look no further than a trusty garbage bag. Stuff your clothes into a garbage bag while they're still hanging in your closet, leaving the hooks out, and then you're good to go. This makes it super easy to transport everything (you can literally lay them all on top of each other in the back seat of your car), and even easier to hang your clothes up in your new closet in 5 seconds flat.
4. Fill Up Your Suitcases!
Don't you dare move empty suitcases to your new place! Use everything you have to hold your things before you turn to traditional moving boxes. Fill up all of your suitcases with linens, clothes, towels and clothing. Best part? It's super easy to transport because suitcases are on wheels!
5. Rent a Moving Truck, and Hire a Couple of Movers by the Hour
Again, we've learned through time and many experiences how to move on the cheap. In the beginning, we always forked out a ton of money to hire moving companies. (I really hated asking friends and family throw out their backs moving our stuff, and I also wanted to make sure my furniture was protected properly!) . The problem is, moving companies are crazy expensive. By the end of the move, you typically pay at least $400 more than you thought you would. So, listen carefully- here's the solution. Instead of hiring a professional moving company, rent a U-Haul. It's cheap. About $80 for an entire day. But, don't stop there! Hire a couple of guys to help you move by the hour. (We went through U-Haul, but I'm sure other truck companies have this option.) We paid $60 for two movers per hour. A steal! My husband had a co-worker that recently paid $8,000 for a local move, and he felt a little sheepish when she asked how much our move was and he told her that we paid less than $300! Shop around, and don't get taken advantage of!
What shortcuts have you found that make moving easier?
Posted by Alyssa on July 15, 2018
Growing up, the sewing room in our house was a source of endless inspiration. To be honest, it was more of a sewing room/craft room combination. The cupboards were filled with art supplies, fabric, buttons, poster board - pretty much anything you can think of! My mom was so good at letting us get our hands dirty and make a big, creative mess as long as we cleaned up after ourselves, and I loved it! A sewing room can be so much more than a place you store your sewing machine and fabric. Check out these sewing room ideas below and see what would work in your house.
via Being Brooke
How have you decorated your sewing room?
Are you having trouble knowing where to start designing in your room or home? Did you recently move to a new place and your old decor just isn't working with the new space? Are you recently living with a new person and running into a design disaster? RC Willey's trained design consultants are here to help. We have an amazing staff of interior design consultants who will help you with anything from furniture layout, color therapy, accessories, or even a whole home makeover! You're only five simple steps away from having a home that reflects your personal style and incorporates those things you love the most. Click here to get started!
Posted by Alyssa on July 14, 2018
Have you scrubbed your bathroom only to step back and feel like you haven’t made a difference at all? Chances are, you have hard water stains on your the glass in your shower. Hard water has a high mineral content which leaves deposits on glass, toilets, shower heads, etc. These stains can be extremely difficult to remove, so it’s important to stay on top of it if you see a problem coming! This video shows you a number of ways to clean your hard water stains from something simple like lemon juice and vinegar to harsh acids.
Hard Water Stains
If you can't watch the video now I'll let you in on the secret - Bar Keeper's Friend. Have you found a different way to remove hard water stains? Share below!
Posted by Alyssa on July 13, 2018
Why spend money year after year paying someone to clean your windows when you can do it yourself? It may seem like a daunting task, but I can promise you that there are few things more satisfying than seeing the dirt and grime fall off your windows. Save money not only by doing the job yourself but by making your own homemade window cleaner. Check out the video below for tips on how to clean your own windows.
Homemade Window Cleaner
Do you have a different way you've cleaned your windows? Share below!
Posted by Andie on July 12, 2018
I've been trying to decide whether to paint the red brick fireplace in our family room. I really love the traditional look of the red, but part of me thinks it could look really cool with a fresh coat of paint! Have you painted your brick fireplace? Here are a few pro's and cons to painting brick....
- It's hot in the design world right now
- It makes the entire room feel more updated and modern
- It can cover up stains on the brick that you can't get rid of
- It's PERMANENT. Once you paint brick you can never go back! Brick is super porous, and it's virtually impossible to remove paint later on.
- Painting brick is very time consuming. There are several steps (and lots of paint) involved, and unless you know what you're doing, it's really easy to mess up.
- Painted brick can be high maintenance to clean- whites or light colors actually show quite a bit of dirt!
What do you think? Do you love the look? Hate it? Here are some pretty painted brick fireplaces for reference...
Should I paint my fireplace? Or keep it as is?
I would appreciate input!
Posted by Alyssa on July 11, 2018
Creating a beautiful flower garden is one of the best ways to boost your curb appeal and create a relaxing, enjoyable yard. You don’t have to be a professional landscaper to have a beautiful yard. With a little research, time, and forethought you’ll be able to create a flower garden layout that will make people stop and stare.
Flower Garden Layouts
Before you even think about purchasing flowers, you need to know your flower bed. It might help to draw a map of your garden bed. Make a note of where any existing trees or shrubs are, identify the shady spots and sunny spots, and notice where any walkways are. This will impact what you plant and where.
Decide what you like and what style of flower garden will fit your home. The style of flower garden you plant should match the style of your home. Take time to look through gardening books and walking your neighborhood to notice what you do and don’t like.
via The Garden Glove
Once you have an idea of what you like, it’s time to do your research. One of the best ways to do this is to visit your local garden store. Explain your garden bed and what you like, and they should be able to help you find plants that will thrive in your area.
Make sure you get a variety of color and texture, as well as a variety of annuals and perennials so you have color all year. You’ll want to repeat colors and flower types for consistency and cohesion.
via Two Twenty One
Now that you have your plants but before you start digging, set out your plants so you can see what it will look like and where they look best. Be sure to leave enough room for your plants to grow wider and for you to access the plants easily.
Start planting from the back to the front. Make sure you are considering the heights and widths of each of the plants you are planting. You don’t want taller plants to block any smaller flowers.
What tips do you have for flower garden layouts?
Posted by Alyssa on July 10, 2018
If you have a blender that is collecting dust in your cupboard, you are not alone! It’s hard to think outside of the milkshake/smoothie zone and figure out ways to really make use of your blender. This is something that I, admittedly, am not very good at so I spent some time looking up different ways to use a blender and thought I’d share.
- Make sure your lid is on firmly and that you keep your hand on the top of the container lid while the blender is going.
- If the blender seems like it’s having a hard time working, add a little liquid to help loosen up whatever you’re mixing.
- Always make sure the blender has completely stopped before you take off the lid.
- Right after you use the blender, put a little bit of warm water and dish detergent in the jar and pulse to make cleaning your blender easier.
- If you are blending something hot, leave the cap off for steam to escape and start at the lowest speed.
- Always leave room for expansion. You shouldn’t fill your blender all the way up before you start mixing.
TRY MAKING THESE IN YOUR BLENDER!
Pancake or Waffle Mix
Make smooth pancake or waffle batter in seconds by tossing it in your blender. Not only will your batter be clump-free, you’ll be able to perfectly measure out and pour the mix straight out of the blender.
If you like smooth texture in your soup, toss it in the blender after it’s cooked to get the texture you want. Obviously, you’ll want to let your soup cool down a little bit before you blend it to avoid burns or a literal hot mess.
If you’ like to make your own sauce (of any kind, really!) try skipping the saucepan and mix everything in your blender. All the spices and flavors will be mixed evenly throughout the sauce and you’ll minimize how much chopping you have to do by hand.
Pour in your whipped cream, turn on the blender, and watch it fluff up into the perfect consistency.