Halloween Accents

If you don't have much of a Halloween decorating budget, then don't worry! These fun and simple ways to decorate for Halloween will add a speckle of artsy sophistication to your place, and without being too avant-garde. It's perfect for those who aren't necessarily into horror or terrifying decorations — these subtle accents will add a touch of dark glamour to your home.

I've put together a handful of projects for you. It's a glimmer of hope in various calibres! Let's get started ...

1. Festive Food: Carrot PumpkinsThis is an easy way to make carrot cut outs inspired by pumpkins. Create these for guests with solid pumpkins, or go all out and get crafty with acute jack-o-lantern details. In the end, it's going in your belly, so if you're not too pressed for time make it count, or be fabulously minimal! View the images and get the 411 on how to do it here! 

2. Spray Painted Décor: 

This is one of my favourite things to do. In fact, when I am trying to think of ways to revamp pieces, I almost always firstly ask myself, "Do I have anything to paint?" The answer is usually a resounding, "Yes!" with my eyes wide open, even if it doesn’t entirely fit with my initial concept.
Here, I've painted mason jars. I found leftover jars that were in my pantry because I was so engrossed in pickling, canning, and essentially everything fermented for culinary purposes. If you don't have mason jars, any container with a screw-closed lid will work.

Style guide: 1: Lay newspaper on a flat work surface, in an open-air environment, then bathe the jars in black spray paint (glossy), turning and spraying from top to bottom. 2. After the paint had dried, I découpaged these brilliant printable apothecary labels on the jars. I went for a slight lustre, but "pseudo-dated" was the aesthetic I also wanted, so I used a dry paintbrush to streak some of the areas of the jars. View my results above.

3. "Party On!" Party Mix: This is a mix that I made for a pre-Halloween party. If you want to add a bit more sweetness, then add candy corn as I did for some guests. It also makes a great little takeaway for dinner parties. But, I can't eat candy corn personally, so I just used sugar-free caramel for mine.

Style tip: Get creative with flavours! I also added a generous scoop of protein powder to the second caramel batch and didn't tell my guests. A tad stealthy, indeed — adding in healthy elements to snacks — especially for my sweet-toothed friends. I modified this recipe. If you want to add some heat to it, just add spicy peanuts. We had three varieties.

4. Lace Art: Again, spray paint is a godsend, no? I used paper dollies for this project. Admittedly, I find that we often forget about our grammar school days of crafting. This project gave me a flashback from my youth! Some of my suggestions: Make a lace bowl, tea light holder, or even a potpourri bowl, (which is what I am using it for). *I used crochet lace, and paper dollies for our bowls, and I actually used fabric glue blended with Modge Podge for mine.

Style tip: Place this bowl on a corner table, atop a secretary table, or small area of your home, then fill the bowl with candies, potpourri, or silk flower buds painted black. Read the tutorial here.

5. Framed Accents:  I get it, you're a busy bee and aren't much of a DIYer. Try printing off some of your favourite video stills from films, and wait for it … wait for it, "Frame it!" Yes, you can do it! I printed a film-still forest image that I liked and painted over it. In a well ventilated space, I used spray paint up close to give it a smudged effect on the paper, then I allowed paint to drip on top. The bird outline is just a rough freehand sketch of a crow that I drew on paper myself, then I cut it out. As you can see, I blended both paint colours (metallic and black) on my newly embellished finished image to go alongside my Halloween theme.

Style tip: A dash of ornamentation wouldn't go amiss either, but less it more, right? I did decide to subtlety decorate these frames with beads. Anti-fragrant remnants from my DIY homemade potpourri display also inspired the finishing touches to the frame. I gave the potpourri a dashing new makeover with copper paint and black matte paint as well.

Stay tuned, you will see some of these creations and more playful fun in an upcoming post. 
P.S. By the way, the blog App just got a brand new Android update. Download it here.

Do you partake in fun/spooky decorating? What do you think of these fun and easy ideas?


Everyday Style: Classic Stripes

It's been quite some time since I featured eco-styles from the Gudrun Sjödén line. Now that summer has gone, what better way to welcome autumn than with a new seasonal collection.

The Inspiration:
Gudrun's autumn collection this time is influenced by her travelling: the urban culture scene, namely in North and South America. There are special details and accents from Santa Fe, New Mexico alongside New York's Chinatown, Meatpacking District, Soho, and Brooklyn throughout the line. You'll find a rich palette of colours from garden green to hibiscus pink, however the main focus is all about grey in various shades.

I love that there's a distinct tone and cultural style throughout the autumn collection—she used Native American, and Afro-Asian elements for inspiration as well. Some elements include: modern and traditional art in ceramic motifs, check patterns, and the impact of denim with a modern twist, amongst others.
The Look:
This was the first time that I decided to try one of the brand's best-sellers from the striped line, and I'm not sure why it took so long since I adore classic stripes. The eco-designer has been producing the 'striped range' for over thirty years, selling more than five-hundred thousand items in striped sweaters and dresses alone.

I solely wore this on the weekend to run errands, so all I wanted was comfort. Initially, I thought that the scale of the stripe would be a tad smaller, but it worked perfectly! I am so pleased with this tunic because it's very roomy, has the right amount of stretch, and the length makes it easy to layer (especially for a person on the taller side) comfortably. I've styled the tunic here as a casual dress with these patterned leggings, and the best part is that it has pockets!

The pocket feature works well for when I'm heading out quickly to grab a sandwich across from the office, or on swift jaunts to my favourite café for a morning cuppa. Both pockets also hold my miniature wallet surprisingly well.

You may have seen a preview of one of my new shawls (on Instagram) that I have not been able to stop wearing. Of course, there will be more stylings of that later.

Are you excited for autumn? Do you wear stripes? 
The goods: Striped tunic in Black/Putty, and “Bronx” leggings in recycled nylon/spandex in Black, Tassel Shawl in cotton-c/o Gudrun Sjödén, Wooden necklace-Ghana, Paris canvas shopper-Kohl's, Leather boots-Vintage. 


Concrete Style: DIY Planters

Since I've been getting into gardening and planting a lot more, I wanted to play around with the idea of concrete containers. I decided on doing a small DIY of two concrete bowls: a gilded bowl for bits and bobs, and a concrete planter.

These are my first attempts at making concrete pots and planters and it was quite an easy project to execute. Perfecting the shapes came later, and I ended up making five different containers. Here are the results, and a "how-to" guide on creating them below.

dry concrete mixture
vegetable oil, or sunflower oil
liquid gold paint or metallic paint
2 acrylic moulds (I used 2 containers 16 cm wide, & one approx. 5 cm wide)
1 weight with a circular edge or candle
shaping tool or spoon (optional)

What do you think of these handmade planters? 
Do you have any plants in your home or work space?
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