American Flag Decor Inspiration

Happy Memorial Day Weekend!!

In order to kick off the holiday weekend and the unofficial kickoff to summer, decorating with the American Flag is a great way to be festive from Memorial Day, to the 4th of July to Labor Day!  You can leave it up, and your set for the summer so you can travel, entertain, enjoy the warm weather and socialize with friends.  Here is some inspiration for an easy and classic way to feel festive all summer long;

I love decorating with an American Flag, the colors are bright and timeless. Get your house prepped with a statement piece inside or decorate and show off outside, or better yet, both!

Enjoy!

Sources: Top Right | Bottom Left | Bottom Right

5 Rules for Decorating

As I was helping out a friend with some design ideas for her new home, her blank slate, I kept stopping to think of how I could make it as easy as possible for her.  I wanted to sum it up with general, yet specific ‘rules’ to help her as she starts looking and finding pieces for her space.  decorating-rules_the-bee-lifeRule #1: Don’t Rush This might actually be the hardest part.  As a new homeowner your eager to finish rooms and make them feel like you’ve lived in them for 10-years. But the truth is, it takes time and you just need to live in the space to see how you’ll be utilizing it, keeping it functional and practical yet high-end and beautiful.

Rule #2: Multi-Functional Pieces  I like to buy pieces that might be able to work in multiple spaces throughout the house. Personally, I like to rearrange and switch things up every now again, and sometimes that’s with accessories, rugs, or pictures.  Also, if it’s a little more pricey piece, like a rug consider if it’s neutral enough to switch it up, in case you ever decide to paint that room in the future.

Rule #3: Consistency & Flow  It’s okay to have similar pieces in different rooms, whether it be white matte frames, mirrors, or the same color pallets. This creates a consistency and flow to your house, keeping the spaces connected and inviting.  This also will most likely help with those multi-functional pieces and allowing them to work within different spaces throughout your home.

Rule #4: Save & Splurge If your working on a room, look for places where you want to splurge and areas you can save.  This will not only keep you on budget, but will also let your dreams become a reality a bit quicker.  Of course we all want a fully furnished Pottery Barn living room, but sometimes we have to be realistic – and for those with the fully furnished PB room, brava! Be realistic in both areas when you’ll need to shell out some more pennies, or when you can bargain shop and save.
Areas to splurge: curtains, rugs and chairs.
Areas to save: side tables, bedding, accessories/frames

Rule #5: Find Inspiration If you have no clue how you want to decorate, the best way I think, to gain inspiration, is Pinterest! Even if it’s just general searches and scrolling through; “living room” or “side table DIY” you can gain inspiration or maybe find an idea you hadn’t thought about before.  Also, if your fixated on a piece, but it’s a bit out of your price range – try finding a DIY version!

Have decorating questions or want more tips? Comment below or ping me on social @mmariebee!

Latest Obsession: For The Home

HERE’S WHAT, I have been absolutely obsessing over especially as the summer months are approaching and the store’s are switching out their inventory to be summery!!!

Lanterns. OBSESSED. I want them everywhere, but especially for outdoor spaces like our front porch. I love them as decor for your entry way and even lightening for your seating area. I also love lanterns for decoration inside, around a fireplace or hearth area, especially the really big lanterns. Not to mention you can find them in almost any finish from silver, to gold, wooden, ceramic, or bronze to fit into your current decor or switch to something new. You can get hanging lanterns or keep them on the ground or table. Plus you can use them season round by mixing up colors and styles with different fillers for the insides… I could go on for dayzzz!  On a lantern kick like me? Check out craft stores, as a lot of them have sever price cuts on summer and outdoor decor (like 60-70%!) you can’t beat it.

Greenery. I am loving me some greens, the fake kind. I first saw some moss like letters at Michael’s and really wanted to impulsively buy them, but one didn’t know what to spell or letters to get, and two thought they would look way out of place in my house, but I can’t help but pine over them. I also really love boxwood wreaths, but refuse to spend the money online and will most likely DIY one, one of these days. And as much as I truly don’t like fake plants, because I’d rather just have a few real ones – I really like the fake greenery balls… yes I just described them as such, okay they’re technically “boxwood vase fillers” (according to Target). Anyways, I like the idea of having some greens around the house to add to the real greens, it brings some added life to your living space.

So those are my two latest obsessions right now, I’ve had my eyes on the lookout for these whenever I hit the stores.  I recently grabbed two silver lanterns for some added decoration up in our master suite, and I love how they compliment the space, we have a mixture of metals, but somehow it’s all working.

What’re your summer favorites?

DIY: Bridal Shower Decor

The fun thing for every party or event, at least in my opinion, is in the details! It’s the little things that make an impact and can really elevate the look and feel, every little thing, from the signage to the centerpieces to the activities and photos. You may remember a few of my inspiration ideas for Katie’s Bridal Shower from THIS POST, back in January… well now you get to see the spin I took on them and even how to make these yourself!

Photo-Booth Ribbon Wall

You will need…
1) About 5-6 different types of ribbon (different thickness, patterns, colors) and about 2-spools of each type (total of 12 spools; try and go when it’s on-sale or you have a coupon!)
2) Rope or cord long enough for 6-ft length (can vary based on your need)
3) Hot glue gun and glue sticks
4) Measuring Tape
5) Scissors

I cut my ribbon pretty much at the same length and did a little over 4-ft, again you can customize as you please but this may affect how much ribbon you buy.  I did a little over 4-ft to accommodate for a fold-over in the next step.  So, the purpose for my ribbon wall backdrop, was to simply serve as that, a back drop for a make-shift photo booth that the shower (not intended for full body picture taking!)

Once I had all of my ribbon cut I began to start a pattern of how the ribbons would be organized, I did a little mix-matching too because I wanted to make it look more organic.  I tied the ends of my rope, so that it would be even, and then I started gluing the ribbon by folding over the edges and gluing these tight.  I would suggest doing this on a surface you don’t mind getting sticky and hot glue residue everywhere.
CAUTION: You will burn your fingers, it might be smart to use a utensil of some sort to push down the folded ribbon, unless you don’t mind burning your fingers (like me).
CAUTION #2: Be careful where you put your hot glue gun down, and to not rest your hand on it and burn your pinky (like me).

So hopefully you can finish this with only minor or no burns, and have a beautiful backdrop for your special day!

A few other tips: knowing where you’re going to hang this banner ahead of time (and the color of the walls) may be helpful, as I mentioned in the post about Katie’s shower I had never been to the venue, so I was hoping and praying it would all workout. Luckily the venue didn’t mind tacking things to the wall (but other venues might not!) and the tacks were a bit tricky with the thickness of the rope.

Mimosas & Bride-to-Be Banners

So you can buy these on Etsy for $18-20 each or you could make these for a grand total of $6-8 each and a little bit of your time!

You will need…
1) Scrapbook paper sheets (you should be able to get 4-letters out of one 12×12 sheet – buy a few extra is you think you might mess up! I would also recommend the heavier card-stock pieces too, usually solid colors.
2) Roll of ribbon of your choice (at least a half-inch thick)
3) Paint/stencils or markers
4) Hole punch and scissors

I fold the scrapbook paper in half, and cut and then cut halves of the half’s, to get four squares.  For the mimosas banner, I used different patterned paper and for the Bride-to-Be banner I used a darker, burlap like color to mimic the inspiration I found on Pinterest, aka Etsy. You can then start lettering on the squares, again for these two banners I did a mix of markers and then paint with stencils to do a more rustic look. Once everything is dry, I use the hole punch to cut two holes at the top corners of each square and then I thread my ribbon through and cut appropriately for length. These both worked out perfectly for a little something extra at the shower!

IMG_1133IMG_1113A few other pieces that help top everything off where mason jar centerpieces with ribbon glued around the center, with baby’s breath and carnations filling the jars! Adding something fresh to the tables, definitely made an impact. I also had mini-chalk boards that were signs for a table with goodies and even for the photo-booth.

The cost to make these vs. buying them definitely saved money and I was able to create completely custom pieces that fit a theme to have everything match, while incorporating her bridal colors when and where I could.

Target Love

As I have been price shopping around for the perfect pieces for our master bedroom, I keep coming back to one place over and over again – Target. Their prices, convenience and in my opinion quality (for the price) can’t be beat.  I am always down for a bargain – even though as much as I would love to shop at some of the higher end spots regularly like Crate & Barrel, Pottery Barn or Anthropologie – there are many other things I like to enjoy with my money!  See if you can guess which of these is from Pottery Barn and which is from Target (don’t cheat!) – you might be surprised by a few…
Target vs. Pottery Barn
01
| 02 | 03 | 04 | 05 | 06 | 07 | 08

How did you do?  These pieces are pretty similar and nearly identical, but the difference between price point is not even on the same level! Target is the clear winner when it comes to price, but I still love and dream about you Pottery Barn (and Crate & Barrel and Antrhopologie).  I also like to decorate or re-accessorize somewhat frequently, so spending more than I need to on pieces isn’t ideal – I am just lucky I have more rooms to move the ‘retirees’ to!

What’re your favorite ‘bargain’ spots?

Hosting Thanksgiving

Although I won’t be hosting a big thanksgiving dinner… maybe one of these year’s I’ll have the honor – that inner hostess in me can’t help but get excited at all the fun and easy ways to make an impact on your family and friends this upcoming meal.  Here are some easy ways to make this holiday personal and unique.

Name Tags: this is your time to get creative and personal, the more unique you make this, the better chance you have of making a genuine impression on guests.

  • Mini pumpkins are easy, inexpensive and cute as a place setting – paint the person’s first letter or name, they can even take these home as a keep sake.
  • Write each of your guests a person note upon their arrival at the table, tell them a few things you’re thankful for in regards to them and your relationship.
  • Find some free downloadable name tags like the ones here to print out and customize!

Accents: mixing up different napkin patterns and glasses gives the dinner an eclectic look, it will also add a layer of effortlessness to the occasion and not make it feel so stuffy.

Ambiance: candles, lighting and music will also add an element to your entertaining.  My personal picks for music would be of the Peggy Lee and Frank Sinatra era on Pandora.  A scattering of candles around the table and seating areas will add that cozy, welcoming feel.

With the big day almost a week away, there is still plenty of time to put the finishing touches on the menu and the table!  I can’t wait to host a dinner one of these years and start new traditions while incorporating old.

House Hunters – Office Space

After two full weekends of house work, and keeping Lowe’s in business, the anticipation of moving into our house has been building… I just want to decorate and organize!!

Again, I blame pinterest for all of my design aspirations, including our future office. I want our office space to be chic and elegant but also sporty, we have some sports memorabilia that I’d like to be able to include in the same vein. So I feel like (once again) the contrast between dark navy blues with whites and greys is a good balance – but I know I can’t use this color pallet for every room… right? Another reason I love this color pallet so much is that it’s still sophisticated without being too girly, because frankly I would love to do something like this… But I wouldn’t do that to B. *smiles*

My inspiration:
MadeByGirl: Anya Kucheryavenko, small office defined by navy wall behind shelves, darling

Pulled from “Made By Girl” Blog via pinterest – Site linked to picture.

How to make this my own:


01 / 02 / 03 / 04

In the next week or two, we should finally be moving into the house. All of the work we have been wanting to get done is nearly under wraps! Then the before and after pictures will start coming… so get ready!

Until next time…