Table Center Piece DIY

Today I’m going to show you a super simple, super budget friendly DIY.

I think I’ve mentioned before how my husband and I enjoy natural decor – lots of plants and wood, and white.  We have so many visions of what we want to do with our house and our decor and slowly but surely we are getting there!

In June we took a trip with some friends to Cypress Hills in Alberta, Canada for a weekend get away.  While there we did some scavenger hunting for some cut down trees and luckily for me I found a fantastic piece of driftwood.  I was actually looking for it for some baby shower decor for a shower I was throwing later in the month.  After the shower was over I brought the piece home and brainstormed what I could do with it now.  I got the idea to use it as a centre piece and put some succulents in it. I’m so happy with how it turned out!IMG_8829

First my husband used an electric planer to plane both sides so it sits evenly (for the baby shower I used it to place mini cupcakes on).  Then while my parents were visiting he used a large drill bit to hollow out 5 holes – three larger ones and two smaller ones.  At that point we needed to brainstorm how to now plant the plants.  You can’t just plant right into the holes – first it would rot, and second there are some holes in the side where the dirt would fall out.  My dad – being the mr.fixit and problem solver that he is, searched the house high and low to find appropriate sized containers.  Eventually he found pop cans that fit perfectly! Brilliant!

Next was to make the look acceptable.  He cut them down and then snipped all around the top and folded the metal in to make the edge dull instead of sharp – sorry I don’t have any process photos of that, hopefully that’s a good enough explanation!  In the photo below you can see the inside edge folded over


This weekend I spray painted two coats of white Rustoleum to make them look a bit more aesthetically pleasing.  I went to a small local plant shop that I absolutely adore and picked out some tiny succulents and airplants.  I repotted the succulents into the cans and placed them in the driftwood.  In the smaller holes I put a bit of preserved moss I had left over from a Terrarium I had made and put the airplants on top.

IMG_9077 IMG_9078 IMG_9079 IMG_9080I’m seriously so in love with the results! It’s taken a little bit of attention to make sure my toddler doesn’t touch, thankfully he’s used to momma saying “plants are to look at not to touch” and he’s fairly good at listening!  All in all this cost $20 for the plants and that’s it, the rest of the supplies I had on hand.  You could even recreate a smaller version, and I definitely plan too.  It’s amazing the beauty you find in nature that can accent your home decor! 

Downtime Highlights

The past few months in the midst of craziness I’ve really tried to slow down and enjoy the moments.  My main goal continues to be living simply and simply living, breathing in each precious minute and really trying to look for the beauty in everything around me.  I’ve also become a supreme coffee snob – so the caffeine intake hasn’t changed much!  I’m noticing more and more how much I love the outdoors.  My main lament about my current situation is that I haven’t found the time to go for a daily walk like I used to.  This little fact shows itself in the 15 extra pounds I carry around!

Enjoy the picture updates of my downtime for the last few months!

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I have two favourite local coffee roasters that I frequent – Phil & Sebastian and Fratello.  Thursday mornings I always treat myself to a coffee at either of those places because normally Thursdays at work are C.R.A.Z.Y. and I always want to start my day on a good note.

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Of course I’m still enjoying coffee at home and sipping it outside whenever possible.

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Every time I’m out and about I continue to try and capture the beauty I see through my camera lens.

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I don’t feel like I need to mention my obsession with all things plants and flowers.  On Wednesday Ezekiel and I wandered around a greenhouse “ooo-ing” and “aaa-ing” over all the plants. I could do that every week.

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We were fortunate to be able to take a weekend away camping with some friends of mine and we all L.O.V.E.D. it!  Ezekiel was in his glory and Carlo and I soaked in the peace and calm of our surroundings.  We’d love to do it again before summers end.

Well there’s my downtime in a nutshell the past three months.

Here’s to continuing to pursuing simplicity and enjoying the moments of life.

Living Room Tour

We moved into our large (for us) house just over 1 year ago and for the last year I have been VERY slowly adding decor here and there.  I’m a minimalist by nature but I still enjoy having pretty things all over my house.  I want(ed) to be very careful with how I choose to decorate.  I want(ed) to take my time and have things that I really LOVE.  I also need(ed) to do it on a very tight budget.

I’m not sure how you would describe our style, we really love having antiques, but we like a modern feel as well.  So I guess our style is a mash up of both.

Apart from Ezekiel’s nursery, the living room/sitting room is the only room that is even remotely close to being finished, so I thought I’d take you for a tour and show you how we decorated on a budget.

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I really love that we went with white in this room, the color on the wall was there when we moved in.  The walls are a shade darker than I would like, and eventually the whole house will be painted in white (I’m serious about my white), but for now this works.

The couch is something we had been dreaming about for years, and people always have something to say about it. Everyone loves it, but everyone also thinks we’re a bit on the foolish side having a white leather couch with a baby in the house, and more babies to come.  I have never regretted the decision, and honestly the couch was the same price as any other sectional, so we didn’t spend a small fortune on it.  I always make sure to have blankets available to use when someone is wearing dark jeans, and I try not to leave pens laying around.  We’ve already had some mishaps including jeans and pen and pop, BUT it all got cleaned off and the couch still looks great.  So say what you will, but we will always love our white couch.

That painting on the wall is an oil painting done by one of my closest friends specifically for our space.  She even painted it right by the fireplace.  It will always hold a special place in my heart and home.  You’ll notice as we go on that she and her husband have played a huge role in decorating our living room.  When I can finally convince them to open an Etsy shop I’ll be sure to let you know!

Living Room Tour

The fireplace will always be a work in progress but I think for now I’m happy enough with it.  We had a lot of discussion over (not) placing a TV there.  I was (am) very against it because I feel like TV just adds another distraction in life.  I really wanted this space to be peaceful and calm.  Having a TV over the fireplace would inevitably lead to having the TV on anytime we were in the room.  I’m against screen time for my kids and didn’t want to be constantly having that battle.  So far I’m winning! My husband has conceded and also agrees with no TV for Ezekiel, so for now we are a no TV family.

Living Room Tour

I love this gold foil print.  I purchased it on an online deal from ThePaperShoppeCA.

Living Room Tour

This ampersand is definitely a favorite! I purchased it from one of my favorite bloggers Elise Blaha Cripe.  Each month she releases a limited edition hand made item.  When I saw she was releasing this one I knew I had to have it, so I set my alarm to make sure I got one.  I think it’s perfect here.

The hurricane candle holder behind the ampersand and the clock were both purchased with a gift card I received from HomeSense.

The vase, Whiskey (?) bottle, and the three arm candle holders were all purchased a few years ago from a thrift store.  I spray painted them to match the space.

Living Room Tour

These planters were standard terracotta planters purchased from the dollar store.  I spent a day or two painting them white and gold.  Unfortunately I also painted them with a gloss finish so that I could easily wipe them clean, and then they yellowed.  Also the flowers I planted in them died.  Just an all around disappointment! It’s easy enough to fix, I just haven’t mustered up the energy to do it.

The red lantern was purchased years ago at winners for $10.

Living Room Tour

The book ends were bought at a thrift store for a couple bucks and spray painted white.  Most of the books on the mantle are thrifted as well except the Pride and Prejudice.   That copy of Pride and Prejudice was given to my grandmother from her uncle and has now made it to my hands.  My grandmother was an English teacher and loved literature.  I inherited that love, so having a copy of one of my all time favorite books that is a family heirloom is pretty special to me.

Living Room Tour

Both my husband and I love plants and are aiming to collect many more.  This orchid was given to me for my birthday.  I’m not totally sold on it being in the living room, but for now it adds some cheer.  The flowers on the coffee table were also given to me on my birthday.  I’ve diligently changed the water and clipped the stems to try and preserve them for as long as possible.  Having fresh flowers in the house is a luxury I can’t afford on a weekly basis, so I’m taking it all in.  Living Room Tour

This is a close up of the birch pedestal candle holders (with no candles on them yet!) that sit to the right of the fireplace.  My friend and her husband went birch hunting specifically for this purpose.  We peeled away a few layers of bark then screwed them securely together.  This metal strap was found by them in an abandoned barn and was a perfect addition for it.

Living Room Tour

These smaller birch pedestals were done at the same time.  I’m going to dowel out the center to fit tea lights eventually.  Right now they are a baby safe decoration.

Living Room Tour

These coasters were made by the same friends.  They made them for my baby shower and I fell in love.  Everyone who sees them comments on how great they are and I couldn’t agree more.

So there you have it.  My incredibly budget friendly living room with many thanks to great friends who made it possible!  I still have a few ideas I want to try.  I feel like it’s not quite finished but I do love the space so much already.  More than anything, I’m happy I have achieved the peaceful atmosphere I was going for.