Marvelous No-Mess Project

What are we crafters and DIYer’s always on the hunt for?
Besides FREE stuff, I mean.
Something we just cannot find enough of.
C’mon, you know this one.

GRAPHICS of course! And yes, free graphics, right? No royalty or fees.

Well, I have em’ for you . . . tons of them even!
Just visit THE GRAPHICS FAIRY
and enter a wonderful world of vintage graphics.
Everything from fonts to flowers, birds to children, all kinds of pretties.

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Last summer, I found this brand new wooden tray at a garage sale for $3.00. It had a dark finish, which I liked, and a glass insert on the tray. Ooh, but it gets better, because it also has a matted sheet . . . you know, one of those multiple photo cutout frame dealies. I wanted a quick, clean project for today, and I still hadn’t done anything with my tray. I was also trying to develop an idea for Mother’s Day. My mom isn’t here any longer but I was thinking about all the things she loved.

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Long story short. I headed over to Karen’s place at The Graphics Fairy and searched for flowers and birds and nature offerings. It was difficult to decide on favorites because there were so many beautiful options, but I chose birds and flowers . . . in honor of Mom. All I did was copy them onto my desktop. Then I printed them, sizing each down close to the openings in my frame mat. Some couldn’t fit just right, so I used a coordinating sheet of craft paper to back the frame and fill in where needed.

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A couple years ago, Hubs and I took an old chair apart and made a little bench. Our tray sets atop that and we use it as an end table most of the time. It’s double duty and we can always remove the tray and have extra seating!

TIP: On a plain tray with no photo mat or glass, you can decoupage some beautiful graphics on, let it dry completely (let it sit for a day or two) and put a piece of clear vinyl contact paper over top.

Hope you enjoyed today’s idea.  Your comments are always welcomed! (hey, I love em :) )

Later – Cheryl

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This original article “Marvelous No-Mess Project” appeared first on Artzzle.com. No included content or photography can be used elsewhere without specific permission and accreditation.

Copyright © 2013-2014 Artzzle All Rights Reserved

More Color . . . Less Words

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It was a perfect Sunday for Easter.
Bright, budding and . . . beautiful.
Such a glorious day leaves one speechless.
So today, I’ll leave the words to you,
and simply share some color

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Two simple bunches of flowers

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Alstroemeria

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Lilies

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TIPS:
1. For longer lasting flowers; when choosing Alstroemeria, find bunches with buds just starting to open. The flowers will appear narrow . . . not fat and fully open; when choosing Lilies, choose stems that have at least one or two blooms partially or nearly fully opened, and buds beginning to burst. Small, very tight, green buds often will never open.
2. Trim stems to your desired length, always cutting at a slight angle.
3. Remove unecessary leaves that will be below the water line and/or not showing.
4. Change water every other day or so when in a standing vase (clipping stems tips again, slightly). For more permanent arrangements, just be sure that water is added when needed to keep it at a consistent level.
5. Always use COLD water.

I hope this helps start your week right.
Until next time, try not to stress too much, just start something.
Glad you stopped by and remember, comments are ALWAYS appreciated

Later – Cheryl

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This original article “More Color … Less Words” appeared first on Artzzle.com. No included content or photography can be used elsewhere without specific permission and accreditation.

Copyright © 2013-2014 Artzzle All Rights Reserved

What Happens In This Vid May Shock You…Unfortunately It May Not.

From “THE EDITORS JOURNAL”, an open commentary blog that I follow. As I posted there, this is a WORLDWIDE problem. It is NOT something NEW. It has been happening for centuries . . . and will continue to happen for ………………………………………………………………………………….. Get the Point?

What Happens In This Vid May Shock You…Unfortunately It May Not..

Monday Menagerie

Hi All. How was your weekend? Ours was pretty darn GOOD!

But now, here’s . . . . . . . MONDAY!
It’s cold but bright.
Hey, sunny’s good, right!?
While outside is fine
inside’s not sublime.

Our weekend was all “home-time” and no “house-time”. So today, UH OH, the place is a little messy – make that a LOT messy. Fortunately, I’m in a cleaning/organizing mood and ready to attack! Problem is I also wanted to sneak in a short post today. But about what?

This morning my many emails were FULL OF COLOR, no matter the subject.

So I’ll continue that theme and say . . .
Welcome to MENAGERIE MONDAY
With color, color everywhere.
The subject . . . well, we just won’t care.
I’m cleaning Picture files, so sharing from there.

PRETTY PENS
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BRIGHT SUPPLIES
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FLOWERS
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SOME WEEDS
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AND WINTER SKIES
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Finally, MY SWEETEST COMPANIONS in a colorful FALL room
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I hope your past weekend was fun.

Friday was included in mine this time, because it was the first day in three weeks that I went out & about on my own, after the March Mishap. Don’t worry though, I didn’t overdo. I did get some shopping in. Went to two thrift stores. Then a bit of daydreaming at our local SHOPKO and on the way home, I hit Mickey D’s drive-thru. (It’s right across the lot from Shopko . . . SO convenient!) My newest MD foodie craves are their “Chicken-Bacon-Cheddar” sandwich and those tasty strawberry cream pies, accompanied by a small fries, of course.

Saturday and Sunday duplicated lots of resting and reflecting. There were plenty “together” moments . . . but enough time for our separate “me” projects too; Hubs in his workshop and I in my office.

Oh, and we saw all our favorite Sunday night PBS shows! That’s a big deal around here! 

That’s about it for today. Just one more thing to say . . . don’t stress, just start something.

And REMEMBER . . . I love comments, so keep them coming!
PRETTY PLEASE :)

Later – Cheryl
P.S. Ok, Ok, so I’ll never make Poet Laureate :( (Geez, I hope I spelled laureate right)

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This original article “Monday Menagerie” appeared first on Artzzle.com. No included content or photography can be used elsewhere without specific permission and accreditation.

Copyright © 2013-2014 Artzzle All Rights Reserved

Fun Finds Easter Wreath Project

Easter Wreath from Fun Finds

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This week I wanted to do another quick project, and keep it at under $5.00.

Thrift shops are no different than any other stores . . . they always have lots of seasonal items. Two of my favorite locals are DISCOVERY THRIFT and our FAMILY PATHWAYS. These stores have lots of craft supplies, papers and fabrics along with everything else.

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Here’s some of what I found.

From Discovery Thrift
• Easter grass: $0.50
• Green flocked wreath with finished back: $2.00
From Family Pathways:
• Packaged Easter table kit: $0.50
From my supply cabinet stash
• Some little green wooden garden stakes: FREE from a garage sale
• A sheet of scrapbooking paper: From a book of 100 sheets for $2.00 at a craft sale long ago

Here’s how I put it together.

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I separated the Big Bunnies piece into two individuals. I used only one for this project so have the 2nd for another time.

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Then I eyeballed the bunny behind the wreath to see where to place it.

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Now, I trimmed the piece, leaving a TAB on the bottom and one on top.

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Next, using an Xacto knife, I carefully made slits on the top/bottom of the wreath, for the tabs.

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TIP: Note that my wreath form is about 2 ½ inches deep; so I cut mid-way into the form. This gives the rabbit more depth than just gluing it flat to the back of the wreath.

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As always, I puttied a piece of wax paper on my work surface. Just to keep the mess contained a bit.

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After the glue gun warmed up, I took four full length stakes and glued them as pictured, to make the cross piece sections for my little fence.

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Next, I cut down several plant sticks, to make fence pickets. I used the pointed ends for this project, but saved the cut-off pieces for another day.

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Here’s where we are in the project.

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Now I took some paper eggs from the kit. Removing the paper from the stem left a tiny hole in the egg. So, little flowers were cut-out of the scrapbook paper, and used to disguise the holes when needed.

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Next, I glued several paper eggs behind and throughout my little fence. And then, eggs with the flowered coverings were added around the top of the wreath.

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Last part was to add some texture with the Easter grass.

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Gathering a clump of grass, I then wired the middle, and after three clumps were made, I then glued them onto the back (or inside) of my fence.

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I pulled strands through the pickets, then gave everything a jagged haircut . . . and here it is!

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Of course this is just an example of how I used my “fun finds”. Yours will be completely different . . . and speaking of yours . . . I always like to see what you’ve done. You can connect with me on PINTEREST or HOMETALK or FACEBOOK and share your photos.

TIPS:
1. For More Depth: I made large dobs of hot glue behind some of the eggs and flowers. This makes them stand away from the surface, for more depth and added interest.
2. On The Fence: The eggs were glued behind the fence and in & out some pickets. This way, after grass is added and adjusted . . . the eggs look “hidden” for the hunt.
3. I glued flat, a few partial flowers to the front and ground of the fence. This helps s tie everything together throughout the wreath.
4. You Regulars all know that I like things a little WHONKY . . . no perfect here. That’s why I glued my fence pickets on a little crooked . . . more fun to do . . . more fun to look at too! :)

So, it’s time to say “don’t stress too much, just start something!”

Thanks again for all of your well wishes after my “broken ribs” fiasco. Each week is a little bit better!

And naturally, I LOVE COMMENTS so keep em’ coming! Thanks.

OH, I’m linking this post to THE SCOOP linky party.

Find them through Anita at CEDAR HILL FARMHOUSE

This week’s host is Barb at THE EVERYDAY HOME
Lot’s of fun there. Take a look!

Later – Cheryl

Copyright © 2013-2014 Artzzle All Rights Reserved

Rabbits, Robins and Everything Easter

Can you say . . . SPRING

I can’t say it . . . without screaming and jumping up and down with glee!

Ribs are recovering … Snow is melting … Easter is approaching … and Robins are arriving!

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Today, I’m sharing everything Easter; a decor idea or two, how-to’s on one of my Make-Do projects and some great online finds from fellow bloggers.

So. . . here we go!

Back before the BIG FALL, I purchased an assorted bunch of flowers at WalMart for $7.99. The mixtures are versatile because divided up, they make several smaller bouquets, for more color around the house.

This particular bunch had all sorts of odds and ends in it . . . so I really had fun. (Sorry, I didn’t take a picture of the complete bouquet).

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Above, I used the single frond of greenery and added daisies, small mums and purple stasis to a wide mouth vase. A cute bunny figurine and some pretty paper drape, brightened up my credenza.

Below, as flowers faded, the arrangement and vase changed.

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Included in the bunch, was a single lily branch, with several gorgeous blooms and buds. It was substantial enough to stand alone, needing no other flowers.

But on an end table, a pretty little box accents the yellows, greens and browns of the stem.
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I held the remaining blooms from the bouquet and “arranged them in my hand”, then wrapped floral tape around the stems to secure the group. Then I simply trimmed the ends of the stems and placed them in a little vase for a final arrangement.

TIP: If you don’t have floral tape, a rubber band or light wire will work. Wire tabs from your bread wrappers work well.

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TIP: The assorted mix bouquets at store stands range from $2.99 to $14.99, making the prices as versatile as the pretty flowers.

Sometimes it’s fun to just get all the same blooms and line them out across a table top, in similar vases.

There’s room for immense imagination here!

MAKE-DO EASTER EGGS

You may remember my “Pretty Gift Box” project, using glue and tissue paper.

That process is used today, on a package of foam eggs, with some colored tissue and ModPodge.

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I did use a few more tools:

> a “throw away” 2 inch paintbrush
> a glass of water
> wax paper
> some long wooden skewers (like you use to barbaque)
> and two clean rags – one wet, one dry.

FIRST I tacked down a good sized piece of wax paper to my work table, to help contain the wet, glue as I worked.

The rags were to help keep fingers clean and dry when neccessary. The skewers allow you to hold the egg, making for easier handling as you glue.

NEXT, tear (just rough rips) small pieces of tissue paper. You don’t want straight, scissors cut lines here.

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Now, Lightly moisten tip of paintbrush, squeeze out excess water, dip tip of brush in modpodge and begin applying to BOTTOM of egg. ARTZZLE.COM

Put a piece or two of paper over the glue, brush flat onto egg.
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Now push skewer into this area of your egg. The stick gives you something to hang on to and makes the rest much easier to finish. Then just keep going, gluing and smoothing layers of tissue until egg is covered.
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TIP: Don’t insert the skewer into the bare foam egg before you begin. Always put a layer of paper on the bottom of the egg first, then insert the skewer over that. This way the paper won’t stick to the skewer, so you can easily remove it after drying.

While your eggs are drying, put them in a tall glass to avoid them sticking to each other.
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When the eggs are completely dry, carefully pull them off the skewer and use for your project.

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TIP: If you want to use eggs on a wreath, cut the skewer off about an inch from the bottom of the egg, and you will have something to insert into a foam or branch wreath.

Lately, online, there have been tons of pretty projects for Easter.

Easter-subway-art-free-printable1

These FREE PRINTABLES from HOW TO NEST FOR LESS are just two. But they’re so colorful AND so appropriate that I just had to share them with you. Thanks Erin.

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Before I close the post today, I want to express Sincere Thanks to those of you that noted concern and sent well wishes, after my little accident in March. It’s helping me heal faster, knowing that so many others are thinking of me. Much appreciated.

So, it’s time to say “don’t stress too much, just start something!”

And naturally, I LOVE COMMENTS so keep em’ coming! Thanks.

Later – Cheryl

This original article “Rabbits, Robins and Everything Easter” appeared first on Artzzle.com. No included content or photography can be used elsewhere without specific permission and accreditation.

Copyright © 2013-2014 Artzzle All Rights Reserved

Daydreaming of Spring Greens

Cheryl @ Artzzle:

Hi All.

Like a broken record, the winter weather goes on and on. And with two broken ribs, the discomfort continues on as well. So, I’m repeating a very early blog I posted from around this same time of that year. So many followers and readers have joined me since, so it will be new to most.

On the mend.
Later – Cheryl

Originally posted on Artzzle:

The calendar says it is Spring but the weather keeps denying it. Recently, I’ve been daydreaming of all the beautiful greens of Spring. I thought how that color family is also a popular interior choice as well. Beginning decorators are especially drawn to warm greens, perhaps because we see those everyday in nature.

Greens are comfortable for guys and gals alike. They are great companions for woods, stone, ceramic and natural accessories. It’s also very easy to find coordinating fabrics that will also give you additional accent colors to use with your greens.

The featured group of three Benjamin Moore paint strips shows cool, mid-tone and warm greens. Cool green has more blue in color mixture. Mid-tones (brighter) are a more even mix of blue and yellow, and the warms have more yellow in the mixture. The lone strip is a Better Homes and Gardens sample and though not showing…

View original 399 more words

Such a “girly” Girl

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Gracie Mae is our “girly” girl.

Quite the fashionista . . . she’s always up with the latest looks.
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She absolutely adores white shoes . . . and has several pairs.

Gray and pink are trademark colors for Grace . . . in attire AND accessories. ARTZZLE.COM
That scarf goes so nicely with your gorgeous fur coat, Grace.

Leopard print is a fabric of choice so, she had a special throw designed. ARTZZLE.COM
Ooh, Gracie . . . how chic!

As a true Minnesotan, Grace loves every little bit of sunlight, so she puts her favorite chair right by the window. Clever arrangement here, as she can sun and attend to her important guard dog duties, simultaneously.
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Wonderful planning, GM.

Always ahead in the decor game too, our gal constantly surrounds herself with home style magazines, and loves all mom’s design books.
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Traditional Home is one of her most loved suscriptions.

SPECIAL NOTE HERE: The photo above had a second shot as well, with Grace laying on top of a pile of magazines. Unfortunately, it didn't turn out . . . because I climbed up into the upholstered chair to take it from a different angle . . . but all I took was . . . a terrible fall to the floor. In mid air, just as I said "Whew, I could have hit my head on the piano!" . . . I smashed my back into a metal based ottoman(with very little padding left on top).

LONG STORY SHORT . . . I cracked two ribs, and laid there on the floor, while calling Hubs home from work, for yet another ER trip. Positives to be taken from this. 1. I have sworn off climbing up on anything (at least when I’m the only one home). 2. This pain, while very uncomfortable, is much easier to tolerate than lower back and disk pain. Oh yes, #3. Hubs got off of work!

But now . . . back to Gracie’s story.

Grace is also very economical and environmentally minded. Her favorite toys are the tubes from TP and Paper towels.
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Good girl, GM . . . reuse, recyle!

But absolute proof of our “girly girl” claims . . .
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Gracie Mae hates mornings!! AHhhh!

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Every morning when she hears me coming down the hall . . .

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she tries pretending she’s still asleep . . . thinking I’ll go away and leave her alone.

The ploy never works though.
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Yah yah . . . OK . . . I'm awake."

But she doesn’t fret for too long . . .
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. . . just finds another spot where the sun’s better anyway!

So there you have it . . . the tough and tragic life of Gracie Mae.

Being a good mom, not to be unfair and mean, one day soon, I’ll share Fozz’s routine.

Until then, stay safe, stay positive and . . . don’t stress, just start something.

Later – Cheryl

This original article “Such a “girly” Girl” appeared first on Artzzle.com. No included content or photography can be used elsewhere without specific permission and accreditation.

Copyright © 2013-2014 Artzzle All Rights Reserved

“To Do” . . or . . “Not To Do” that is the question

Hi All.

Hey, CONGRATULATIONS and GOOD JOB DONE . . . to those of you who have recently completed a wall painting project!

So is the new color fine, but you had a little more “umph” in mind? Consider this option next . . . Trims and mouldings.

Trim and moulding, even in small quatities, can instantly dress up a room, and give it a finished look. And it is something that beginners can do and afford, not just the seasoned DIYers.

True, you must be accurate in your measuring and cutting, but newbies can use straight cuts, butted, where as experience allows the more complicated mitered cuts and joints. And your pieces can be anything from inexpensive, primed MDF or pine that you’ll paint, all the way up to solid, finished hardwoods that you stain.

Let’s have fun looking at some wonderful examples from my HOUZZ files.

BEFORE YOU CLICK on the photo below,
just want to let you know . . . what happens next.

  • 1. Click on the photo below
  • 2. On 2nd screen – click that same photo
  • 3. On final (large) screen, click again on the photo to get to SLIDESHOW.

    Man, I hope this works! \:>)

  • Spring Arrived …but We’re Still Inside

    Hi All.

    Calendars say it’s Spring but weather has many of us still stuck inside . . . and our brains are fried . . . with boredom.  What I do for this malady, is rearrange, a lot!  It refreshes the spaces in your home and your mind. Best part is, it doesn’t cost anything!

    Just be careful with heavy stuff.  You don’t want any ER trips for a back out of whack.

    Today, I have hints on how to improve your furniture groupings.

    Let’s pretend you’re looking at one of your main living areas, and you think “it’s not so bad, I like my stuff in here.”  But there’s just a little something off and you wish you could fix it.    Consider the area below, a conversation area in an average sized living room.

    Nice things but they aren't communicating well.

    Nice things here so what’s wrong?

    Maybe because most of our first places are small, we want to push things out and use every inch of space when we graduate to bigger rooms. It’s almost a natural instinct, but spreading out dooms arrangements. The group above is dead because of the spread.

    Tighten Up

    Move pieces closer together, making it a more inviting arrangement.  Below, notice how we pulled the chairs closer together, angled them and centered things, table and all, under the wall clock.  This is a conversation area, but now you won’t have to yell across the room to converse!  Make your pieces communicate, so that your guests can too!.

    Tightening Up

    Add More . . . Sometimes

    YES . . . me, the “no clutter” freak . . . I just told you to add more stuff here.  Key word here is “sometimes”.  The solitary plant gets some company with another plant and vase.  And all are moved closer to the seating.   By using three items instead of the one lonely plant and positioning them beneath the picture, you create more interest and also better flow for the eye, connecting everything in your arrangement.  The blue keeps going with the second planter. We also added the matching ottoman for the easy chair.   I mean, what would you do with it otherwise?

    Okay, I did take away somethings – the picture was replaced with a larger, more color appropiate one.  And a table lamp is substituted for the floor lamp.

    Remember to always provide good lighting for every seating arrangement.

    More Easy Tricks

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    Above, simply using a different lamp, and swapping the coordinating lounger for the matching chair, quickly gives you another look.

    Below, we added some toss pillows, changed back to the larger lamp and went to a bigger table.  Now this group will work for reading and/or TV viewing as well as conversation.  We’re beginning to experiment with the floor arrangment and try a third picture.

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    Don’t Be Afraid to Experiment

    No Big Deal if something doesn’t work.   Here the plant behind the chair just doesn’t work, AND should be removed 2. The new “two” pillow colors and the added oranges in the floor group and the table lamp, DO work and now you have yet another change.

    TIP 1: In furniture arrangement consider communication and conversation. These might seem to be the same things but here, you want your furnishings to communicate, as well as your guests. Pulling pieces together avoids that isolated, disconnected look. Conversation is a given when more than one seating piece is involved, because you are inviting two guests to sit, and they’ll want to talk, so don’t make them shout by spreading things out.

    TIP 2: Comfort is always important, whether in a single chair grouping or a conversation area. Remember to include proper lighting and available table surface in any seating arrangement, for comfortable use. And angle chairs towards each other. Avoid pushing everything flat up against the wall.

    TIP 3: Use what you have. Everything doesn’t have to match to work together in a grouping. Use what you have and what you love.  Relate pieces through color, accessories and good arrangement. Sometimes the differences in pieces are what make the grouping interesting.

    Above all, have fun. Don’t stress, just start.

    Hey, I love hearing from you. What do you think? Leave a reply below . . . and let me know!

    Later – Cheryl

    This original article “Spring Arrived but We’re Still Inside”  appeared first on Artzzle.com. No included content or photography can be used elsewhere without specific permission and accreditation.

    Copyright © 2013-2014 Artzzle All Rights Reserved