Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Guest Blogger Dazzles with Thanksgiving Tablescape

We are SUPER-excited to have the wonderful Lauren from The Art of Living Beautifully, guest blogging HERE on Housing Cents!!  Lauren is a life-stylist who specializes in tablescapes, wardrobe styling, Stella & Dot, and clearly being FABULOUS!!! Check out her tips for creating a wonderfully welcoming and elegant Thanksgiving table for your upcoming gathering.  
The Thanksgiving Table. Quite possibly one of the most important tables we set all year because this is the one holiday that literally takes place at the table, around a meal. The tablescape is the celebration. I typically incorporate lovely elements of Fall such as colorful leaves or pumpkins, but the question of how to make it little less expected pops up each Fall as I begin to envision the table where my friends and family will gather and give thanks. 

Like all the tables I set throughout the year, I began with a source of inspiration to set the tone. This year inspiration struck as I turned to page number sixty two in the November issue of Southern Living Magazine, the step-by-step tutorial on how to create a centerpiece using a shallow wooden bowl seemed simple. And gorgeous. And so it began.  
Deer antlers, real and fake fruit, sticks, preserved flowers and a large cornucopia filled a long wooden tray to make a colorful centerpiece that was low enough for guests to easily see over. The preserved flowers were really the key in making this centerpiece simple as I didn't have to worry about florists foam or keeping the flowers alive. 

My dining table is made of teak and has natural-shaped edges which makes the use of a tablecloth difficult. If you face the same challenge at your home, try cutting a piece of burlap to cover only the top of the table. It will protect the table and soften the effect amongst so many hard surfaces such as dishes and flatware, plus burlap comes in a large variety of colors...some even have metallic thread woven within!

Leaf placemats sat beneath my white china and Queen's Quintessential Game bowls. The pheasant is such an appropriate bird for the season without screaming "turkey theme!" all over the table.

My favorite element of this table was the use of copper accents. Copper flatware, napkin rings and even copper mugs (we're drinking Moscow Mules, aren't you??) brought a rustic elegance to the table with its rich color and home-y feel. Of course wine with your meal is always enjoyable...but so is a refreshing cocktail in a fancy mug!

In lieu of a desert fork or spoon, at the top of each place setting I positioned a mini cornucopia to hold a place card and lovely pumpkin truffle. I know various cakes and pies are always a large part of Thanksgiving meals across the country, but if you are looking to scale back your meal just a tad, why not offer a small bite of something sweet for guests to enjoy after the meal. Save the pie and coffee for later in the evening.

Regardless of how many you are entertaining or how glamorous you believe your meal will be, providing a beautiful table makes every occasion all the more memorable. Don't you feel blessed when the table where you are dining matches the delicious food that has been prepared for you?
May your November be full of grace. May your table be elegant and full of loved ones. And may your meal be perfectly seasoned, rich in flavor and in love.
-ciao for now-
For more great advice on living beautifully, visit Lauren's website, The Art of Living Beautifully, her Pinterest boards or follow her on Instagram for oodles of FAB inspiration and an aesthetic feast for your eyes.  From recipes to design to fashion, Lauren has you covered.

Thank you Lauren!!! You are our style hero!

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Hardwood Floor Care Tips

There is nothing, literally nothing, like hardwood floors.  Whether they are hand-scraped, polished or a more modern wide-plank, maintenance and good care enable them to endure day after day, long after installation. Thanks to Highland Homes, for these tips.  Enjoy!

Tip of the Month courtesy of Highland Homes

Thursday, November 5, 2015

A Little Afternoon DIY...

With shows such as House Crashers, I Hate My Bath and Rehab Addict, it may seem that a full room remodel is doable in a weekend, or a day.  Ah, that is the magic of television. These projects involve many more steps and people, for that matter, than you see on your screen.  Homeowners often feel overwhelmed by the arduous work that goes into a full room remodel.  Why not instead, opt for a smaller project, such as a furniture re-purpose, paint or refinish that just might make your tired room sparkle again, AND you can accomplish in say a day!!!

Get some great tips from Christine Brun, with creators syndicate, or check out TEAM-PRZADA's Pinterest Boards for inspiration.  We particularly love our  DIY-TRY and have pinned a ton of great small projects to help amp up your home's functionality and decor.  Author Christine Brun references Annie Sloan Chalk Paint, but we have personal experience with Maison Blanche.  It is sold, right in the heart of Downtown Plano at Southern Vintage Glam.  Bonus, you can sign up with SVG's owner, April, for a class on how to use this FAB paint.  As with Annie Sloan Chalk Paint, the appeal of Maison Blanche Chalk Paint is the ease with which it adheres to surfaces.  There is no need for stripping, sanding, or difficult prep prior to painting.  GREAT colors, easy to work with and a quick wipe-down of the surface and voila, you are ready to paint!!!