Christmas Decor on a Budget

Christmas is my favourite Holiday. As soon as Halloween is over, I start gearing up for all things Christmas: decorating, baking, shopping for family and friends, and everything in between.

Everyone has an opinion on when it’s “appropriate” to start decorating for Christmas. Some say right after Halloween; some say after Remembrance Day, out of respect for our veterans; some say after Thanksgiving (in Canada, ours is early October); some say December 1st. For me, it’s right after Halloween and when I have the opportunity, in between working, the kids extra curricular activities and keeping house.

When I do finally get around to decorating, I find it can be a little overwhelming. Walking the seasonal aisles of stores can be dangerous. I find myself thinking: oooo I love that; ooooo I need that; oohhhhh this is so nice, I should get this. STOP. This is where the purpose of this post begins…

SHOP YOUR HOME.

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Before you purchase new Christmas decor, make sure you shop your home first. More often than not you forget about what you have packed away. Maybe you purchased some new ornaments or faux trees during a Boxing week sale – I know I have. Go through all of your decor and see what you have, and what you don’t need. Try to sell items you no longer want, or purge what you don’t need.

If you do decide to purchase a few new pieces for your home, set a budget for yourself. This will prevent you from going overboard in a store like Home Sense. Who else wants to fill their shopping cart every time they go there? It can be so overwhelming.

Try out a Christmas DIY. Pinterest is a wonderful thing and if you are having trouble coming up with DIY idea’s, that is a great place to start. You may find that you have all the items you need in your home, for the perfect DIY.

Don’t go overboard. Less is more. Clean and simple looks are my favourite. You don’t need to fill a sideboard with Christmas trinkets; and mantels look timeless with some garland, candles and stockings.

Shop your home.
Set a budget.
DIY.
Less is more.

I cannot wait to share my Christmas home decor with you this season. I promise you I follow all of these things.

Happy decorating!

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Bench ReDo

Tell me I’m not the only one that has multiple projects on the go that are only half-completed…I finally tackled a project that I have been meaning to do for months but just hadn’t found the time for.

I recently compiled a list of “projects” that I would like to start/finish before the end of the year. It’s not a “to-do” list (if you missed my post on why I don’t make “to-do” lists you can read it here) but rather something to look at on a day where I have some extra time (wait, do those exist?) to tackle a fun project.

I have had a bench sitting in my front foyer for months that I have been wanting to redo.

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There is a lot sentiment behind this piece which I will share more about in another post, but I had to be careful with how I tackled this project. The entire top portion of the bench is made out of burned matchsticks. It’s quite amazing actually.

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Thousands and thousands of burned matchsticks, glued together to make a beautiful piece of furniture. For this reason, I had to be so careful with how I sanded the top of the bench. I only wanted to strip a thin layer of the Varathane off, without damaging the matches. I sanded the legs (a little more abrasively), followed by the top and sides.

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As you can see, I had some extra little hands help me with the sanding.

For the legs, I used Rust-Oleum Chalked Ulta Matte Paint in the shade Country Grey. I love how this paint goes on and how quickly it dries. I have shared it before on my Instagram Stories, and all the different colour options.

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I used two coats on the legs, and allowed 30 minutes of drying time between coats.

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Then I flipped the table over so I could stain the top.

I chose a grey Varathane Wood Stain for the top. I couldn’t use the chalk paint on the seat because it would have covered/filled all of the details of the matches, so I chose a wood stain.

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A little goes a long way, so I applied a thin layer across the bench – using long even strokes with the paint brush.

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Then, I took a rag and wiped off any excess stain, which also helps it seep into all of the grooves in the wood.

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If you choose to not wipe off the excess stain, you may find it will remain sticky for a long period of time and it won’t have a smooth finish (speaking from past experience).

I decided I wanted to distress the legs of the bench to pull out some of the original wood. I think it really tied the whole piece together.

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This is what I ended up with!

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You can see the stain on the top is a very subtle hue of grey but it made such a difference in the overall look.

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I am so pleased with how it turned out and I love this piece even more now!

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Minecraft Party: Maxton Turns Seven

A few weeks ago Maxton turned seven and we celebrated with a Minecraft themed party. He loves video games right now and that was his gamer theme of choice. I had a few ideas on what I wanted to do for the party, most of it just came from watching Maxton play the game; and asking him what characters he wanted to see incorporated into the party.

He asked for Herobrine, a Creeper, Pig and TNT. Everything in the world of Minecraft is very geometrical, so I figured it would be fairly easy.

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The sign and balloons I purchased from Party City and the “Max” portion of the sign I made myself.

I found some shoe boxes and used construction paper to transform them into TNT, a Creeper and Herobrine.

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I asked Maxton if he wanted to do a “Pin the tail on the Pig” and he thought it was a funny idea so I purchased some bristol board and glued a pig made out of pieces of construction paper onto it.

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He actually turned out pretty cute and it was so easy to do!

I purchased plain green paper bags for the gift bags, and just cut out black pieces of construction paper to glue on to them to turn them into little creepers.

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The cake I had made by a home-based cake decorator and she did a fantastic job! I was so pleased with how it turned out; and it tasted amazing! It was a chocolate cake, at Maxton’s request.

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6D3EAE61-B5BA-4D19-BE04-C2D62DFFC475.JPGMaxton had such a fun time, and said it was his favourite party yet!

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I love planing the kids birthday parties and I am always excited to see what theme they choose each year.

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If you are looking to plan a Minecraft party for your kiddo, I hope this offered you some inspiration!

Follow me on Instagram @pinkandblueblog

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DIY Fall Wreath

A few years back, on my old blog, I shared a Fall DIY wreath that ended up being featured on Michael’s Pinterest page; so I was pretty proud of myself at the time.This year, I decided I would make two new wreaths, because my hunt for ones I loved, left me empty-handed.

I actually took off all the decor from my old wreath so I could reuse it, and then just picked up another one from Michaels.

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They are just basic 18” wreaths and are under $8.

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The faux flowers and greenery I used for the wreaths were all purchased from Michaels. They can be expensive so watch for sales or use their weekly coupons. I lucked out and got all of mine when they had a “buy one get one free” sale on all of their faux fall arrangements.

I also find it easier to shop if you have a colour palette in mind. For me, I wanted to stick with green, white and peachy tones with some subtle hues of burgundy or deep purple. Pinterest is a great place to start to get some inspiration if you’re unsure. So, with that palette in mind I grabbed different types of flowers, some individual and a couple bouquets. I always purchase more than I need so I can play around, and then return what I don’t use afterwards.

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I brought everything home and laid everything out, so I could get a clear visual of what I had to work with, and just started to play around. It took me about a half an hour of re-arranging and adding/removing flowers before my vision came to life.

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Depending on the type of flowers you chose, and the length of the stems, you can weave them through the wreath itself, without having to glue anything. If you have smaller flowers or blossoms that don’t have stems, you can just use a glue gun and glue them on. For these wreaths, I was able to just weave everything through without having to use a glue gun.

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That’s all there is to it! It’s much more affordable to make your own and you get exactly what you’re looking for. You can also change it up, or add to it year to year if your taste changes.

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I hope this brought you a little fall inspiration!

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