• Day 12 of the 12 Posts of Christmas – Red Berry Letter Wreath

    Posted on December 12, 2014 by in Christmas, DIY

    Tired of the same old holiday decor? Well I’ve joined 11 other fabulous bloggers to bring you the 12 Posts of Christmas – a series of inexpensive but fabulous holiday DIY projects that can help you add a little something special to your home this season, all for under $24.

    I will be the first to admit that my version of DIY is usually limited to spray painting things (mostly mirrors) white but when my friend Erin of DIY Passion asked me to be part of the 12 Posts of Christmas, I rose to the DIY challenge.

    It took me a while to decide what my project was going to be. I was inspired by a red berry letter wreath that I saw on Pinterest but it used clumps of faux berries cut from artificial branches. I searched all over the city for these faux branches but, alas, had no luck. I was about to abandon my idea altogether when I saw another project online that used tiny red styrofoam balls. Bags of these red balls were apparently available at Dollarama so I quickly made a trip to my local store and scooped up a few bags for myself. Things were starting to take shape.

    In addition to being inexpensive, ideally, these projects should be fairly easy as well. Now, I wouldn’t say that my project was difficult but it was definitely time consuming. Very time consuming. So time consuming, in fact, that half way through I was wishing that my last name began with the letter “I.” Definitely not a project that one should tackle if pressed for time but I think it was definitely worth the effort.


    Berry wreath supplies


    1 Letter form ($7)

    1 bag of red styrofoam balls ($1.25)

    Gold acrylic paint ($1.25)

    Paint brush

    Hot glue gun and glue sticks

    2 pieces of thick ribbon

    I knew that the berries wouldn’t cover the entire letter completely so I painted one side (this will be a bit of a snaffoo later) with three coats of the gold paint.

    Berry wreath prep


    Then I plugged in my hot glue gun and got to work. I covered the entire M with one layer of red berries. I won’t tell you how long that took. Let’s jut say waaaaaaaay longer than I expected. The size of the berries also meant I suffered frequent hot glue burn throughout the project but I stuck with it.

    When I finished the first layer, I held up the letter to check out my handiwork. I quickly noticed that one layer wasn’t going to cut it.


    First layer of berry wreath


    See all that gold poking through the berries? Yeah, not so pretty. Guess what that means? You’ve got it – another layer of berries. Yep. Told you this project wasn’t going to be quick and dirty.

    After one bag of berries and about 20 hot glue sticks, I filled in all the holes with another layer of berries. When I was done, I cut two strips of wide holiday ribbon. I chose blue because I love the combination of blue and red for holiday decorating.

    I knew that I wanted to hang the M on the mirror in my entryway and when I held it up to the mirror, I realized my mistake. I had only painted one side of the letter which meant that the unpainted backside would be reflected in the mirror. I carefully turned the wreath over and painted the flip side gold as well.

    When that was done, I hung the M on the mirror by pinning the two strips of ribbon to the top of the mirror with tacks. I still haven’t finished all of my holiday decorating so you won’t get the full effect yet but stay tuned to the blog for a full holiday house tour coming soon.


    Finished berry letter wreath


    Thanks for stopping by and, if you haven’t already, make sure to check out the other great 12 Posts of Christmas projects.




    12 Posts of Christmas 900x450

    1st Day

    DIY Passion

    2nd Day

    Little Red Brick House

    3rd Day

    Fynes Designs

    4th Day

    My Daily Randomness

    5th Day


    6th Day

    The DIYDiary

    7th Day

    The Bold Abode

    8th Day

    Canary Street Crafts

    9th Day

    Here Nor There

    10th Day

    Making it in the Mountains

    11th Day

    Elizabeth Joan Designs

    12th Day

    Maddex Musings

  • lemonade, anyone?

    Posted on May 1, 2014 by in Decorating, Mood Boards, Summer

    So today is May 1st and I’m really hoping that all the April showers (and snow) we’ve endured will lead to bright and beautiful May flowers, particularly tulips. I’d like to say that we’ve been having a wonderful spring so far here in Halifax but that would be stretching the truth a little too far. And, just my luck, the dreary weather even followed me on vacation to Florida a few weeks ago. Overcast skies, cool breezes and rain were definitely not the forecast we were expecting when we planned our family vacation to Orlando but we tried not to let it put a damper on our fun.

    I know I’m not alone in wishing that Mother Nature would stop doling out the proverbial lemons because no matter how much positive thinking you channel, it’s really hard to enjoy an ice cold glass of lemonade when morning temperatures are still hovering around freezing with the windchill.

    So what does a design loving girl do to battle the blahs? Why, create an imaginary beach retreat of course, complete with furniture and accessories. And though I do love living by the ocean, I’d prefer that my imaginary retreat be situated near a much warmer body of water, like the Gulf of Mexico perhaps? Wishful thinking, I know, but whatever helps get me through until warmer days are upon us.

    Care to join me? There’s a frosty glass of lemonade waiting for you…

    Summer House


    White couch, IKEA/ Side table, Serena and Lily/ Coffee table, IKEA/ Coral chandelier, Well Appointed House/ Striped rug, zgallerie.com/ Mirror, Pier 1 Imports/ Aqua cushion, interiors online.com.au/ Coral cushion, Williams Sonoma/ Woven baskets, set of 3 vases, Crate and Barrel/ Candleholder, Zara Home/ Beach photography, easy.com/ Summer House sign, Pottery Barn/ Members Only, flea pop.com/ Wall hooks, etsy.com




    P.S. I still haven’t taken off my snow tires or washed and stored any of our winter outerwear for fear of jinxing myself. I’m not the only one, am I?!

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  • hello spring (maybe?)…goodbye procrastinating!

    Posted on March 24, 2014 by in Decorating, DIY, Organizing, Spring Cleaning

    With the official start of spring last Thursday, my social media feeds were full of people celebrating the promise of warmer weather by posting pictures of colourful seasonal flowers and clothing. Some were even optimistic (or should I say brave) enough to wear shoes with no socks!! Can you imagine?!

    Despite all this optimism though, it looks like Mother Nature didn’t get the same memo the rest of us did. With record setting low temperatures and the threat of what may be the season’s biggest snowstorm heading towards the Maritimes this week, it’s getting more and more difficult to believe that we’ll ever see the end of what I consider to be the worst winter I can remember in a long time.

    I don’t know about you but I did a lot of hibernating this winter (translation – a lot of procrastinating). Unfortunately, there aren’t as many checkmarks on the to-do list as I’d like but last week, on the “official” first day of spring, I made a pact with myself that things were going to change. My first project? Finally getting around to creating the gallery wall I’ve been planning for my main staircase.

    This is what the staircase has looked like for the four years we’ve lived in this house…



    Pretty boring, wouldn’t you agree? Many hours of selecting photos and shopping for just the right frames later, and this is what the same staircase looks like now…


    The view from the main floor.



    The view from the upstairs landing.


    It’s been nearly five years since we relocated to Halifax, leaving our friends and family in Ontario behind. I wanted this wall to be a way for us to remember all of the special people in our lives that we don’t get to see regularly, as well as showcasing favourite family moments. Along with the photos of friends and family, I chose my favourite pictures of my children throughout their childhood, the ones that never fail to make me smile, and added a few of my favourite pieces of their artwork in for good measure.

    Here are some highlights of my favourite pics up close…

    (P.S. Please excuse the glare and the terrible camera angles. It was kind of difficult to take these pics without my reflection getting in the way!)



    This is my daughter’s interpretation of Van Gogh’s Sunflowers painted last year in Gr. 2.



    These spring flowers were painted last year by my son in Gr. 1.



    One of my favourite pics of my daughter when she was little. That smile!!



    A favourite of my son during a trip to Mexico. He never fails to get food on his face!!



    I love everything about this shot taken during a family cruise – the outfits, the expressions, the poses!!



    This picture is very special to me and was given to me by my Auntie Rie, who started babysitting me when I was 6 weeks old and became like a second mother to me. It’s a picture of her husband, my Uncle Art, when he served in the Air Force during WWII.


    I had been thinking about this project for a few years now and I’m so glad it’s finally complete. My kids get a kick out of seeing the pictures of themselves when they were younger and we all enjoy being able to see the faces of our friends and family back home. Stay tuned for more updates from #projectnomoreprocrastinating as I check more items off my to-do list.

    Have you been procrastinating this winter? What plans do you have in order to get ready for the warmer months? I’d love to hear from you.

    ~ Nicole


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