Front Porch Decor Tips for Fall

Since this past Thursday was the official kickoff to fall, and the fact we’re coming off a beautiful fall weekend, I’m ready to start accepting everything fall.  One place that you can really make a statement for fall is your front porch/entryway; and this can be accomplished simple or on a more grand scale.  Here is some inspiration along with key pieces and tips to consider as you put your fall front porch together!


First You’ll Want to Determine:

  1. Your color pallet – if you want to go with the deep oranges, reds, and yellows or if you want to keep it simple with white pumpkins and pops of one color.
  2. If you’re going to keep it simple and understated or if you’re going all out.
  3. Halloween specific or fall; personally I learn towards for fall since this will last you up until your pulling our your Christmas decorations. Halloween only lasts a month. CONSIDER:  If you’re leaning towards Halloween, because you have kids or are hosting a killer party, think of ways to switch out key pieces after the 31st so that you can keep it up through Thanksgiving.

Key Pieces:

  • Pumpkins/Gords
  • A sign or focal point
  • Mums – remember your color pallet!
  • Lanterns
  • Wooden crate or old windows

And wah-la! You should have a fabulous, inviting front porch for the next 2-months! I still need to finish a few DIY’s and crafts, but I’ll share my finished front porch here in the next few weeks.

Share your fall front porches in the comments below or tag me on social media @mmariebee. 

DIY – Coordinates Sign

Remember our big attic renovation into our master suite?  Well the little details have still been a work in progress, as they usually are. But we are getting closer to getting the little details finished up. I am finally happy to share one of the last pieces to the gallery wall puzzle. It’s a coordinates sign that I made using old wood from our house and the renovation! IMG_4970IMG_4972I love the way it came out, the old wood is what brings this simple sign to life. The metallic silver lettering also pops on the wood grain with a nice mix of old and new. I wanted to keep it simple with the text and not do anything to fancy to really rely on the wood to pull this piece to life with the metallic accents. One of my goals for the gallery wall if you remember wayyy back to my Gallery Wall Inspiration was that I wanted to add color, textures, and different elements that represent B and I without it getting too girly.  I feel like the earthy wood grain in the coordinates sign helps balance the ‘girly’ along with pulling in the other wooden frames used on the wall.
IMG_4716IMG_4972For now the gallery wall is feeling pretty complete. There may be some additional pictures added below but for the longest time there was this awkward section where the coordinates sign ended up going, so order has been restored! And I am loving the piece of our home that we’ve been able to restore in more than one way.

DIY – Window Side Table

I am excited to share my latest project with all of you; a window table.  Once you have the materials, this project is pretty easy and low cost! It’s a win-win when it comes to creating a cool piece that’s custom to your needs, whether it be a coffee table, plant stand, or a side table the options are endless.

What You’ll Need;

  • Window (of your choice) – I used an original window from our basement, since they were pulled out when we had glass block put in. Total cost; $0
    • Don’t have any old windows laying around? Check garbage day, it’s amazing what people will put on the curb!
  • 4-Legs; length and style of your choosing. I used: Waddell Ash End Table Leg from Lowes. Total cost; $16
    • NOTE: I bought legs with pre-installed hanger bolts that allowed for a clean smooth finish without needing extra hardware to attach the legs
  • Wood Glue
  • Paint – color of your choice & paint brush
  • Drill and drill bit to predrill holes for legs
  • Blade to scrape off excess paint on windows
  • Timing; finished within a weekend

From there you can prep your window by cleaning it up and sanding if you’d like. I opted to keep the hinges and some of the other rustic elements since I was working with a 100-year old window.

Next, flip over and mark out where you’d like to place your legs – as you can see with the window I was working with the spacing and exterior width was inconsistent and not much to work with so I eyed about an inch from the edges. Once I had those marked, we pre-drilled a hole, although we didn’t go deep enough a few times so we had to go back over the holes.

Before screwing the legs in we added wood glue in the hole and around the bolt on the leg. Make sure your legs get all the way in and are secure, some of ours were wobbly, so we had to re-drill new holes and start over. But once they were in and secure you definitely knew it. The wood glue required about 12-hours to dry, so day one was finished.

After the wood glue was dried, I flipped the table over and began to paint! I opted to use a primer over the preexisting brown, and also did the legs in the same color.  I had to do 3-coats before this beauty was looking clean.

I let B do the fun stuff and scrape the paint I’d gotten on the window.  This really cleaned up the piece to give it that finished look. From there it was just giving it a good clean with some Windex and setting it up in place – we added this gem as an accent in our sun room. The light and airy of the white and windows ties into the space perfectly.IMG_4428IMG_4430IMG_4432Using most of what we already had, the main expense was buying the legs for $16 – you can’t even get a coffee table for that!  I love the way it turned out, it still has a vintage and rustic flare to it. Not to mention it has multiple purposes and I am sure it will change overtime for us!

Happy DIYing!

Backyard Patio – DIY Project

After much deliberation and back and forth, B and I have finally figured out what we’re going to do to create a backyard-patio living space. There was a few different options discussed, but I think we’ve come up with a solution that will work for the space, long term, and won’t break the bank (hopefully).


We did the measurements last night and the biggest part of adding in a completely flat patio (without a deck or floating deck) that I was having an issue is, was the weird space it would be next to the house, being low without a direct door leading out to it. But I think having larger greenery in pots surrounding the area in the corners closer to the house, will help solve that problem I was having.  I also think adding in some lights above the one patio area leading up to our sun room on the second floor will add an intimate feel. We will also have a separate dining area from the lounge area, which I think it’s crucial, since I want both spaces to feel spacious.

Our plan is to get 20×20″ square concrete pavers and river pebbles to place in between the pavers. I’m still determining all the spacing between each of the pavers, I was originally thinking 1-inch, but most of the projects I’ve seen are about 3-inch gaps are larger, so we will see where we net out with ours.

Needless to say, B and I are both itching to get this project complete, although it’s not going to be as inexpensive as I had hoped from the initial figures, but I will be sure to follow-up with the finished product and details in the next month or so!



DIY – Night Stands

As our attic nears completion (spoiler) I wanted to share a few of the other projects along the way that although much smaller than the overall guts, walls and refinish, have been key for the final touches.

With such a big project like this, I really wanted to try and find a bargain or two especially with furnishings, and I would say we did a pretty good job of splitting that between bargain vs. brand new.

The Before

One surprise that took me awhile to come around too (and find) was our night stands. I found plenty that I loved, but not enough for the price tag that came with them. It had been my mission on garbage days to find some treasures people put out on the tree lawns – but no such luck (only found one).

Enter the “unfinished lamp table with two drawers” from Home Depot. Similar to what we wanted and a price tag that was palatable ($71.99), especially when purchasing two for the price of one finished  – not to mention these suckers are sturdy!

International Concepts Unfinished Lamp Table with 2-Drawer

The After

We ended up painting and staining the tops to mimic one of the pricier side tables we had seen from Target, upgraded the hardware and wah-la you have a high-end night stand for a fraction of the cost! We love the way they turned out.

Since we already had stain and poly from our dining room table project, we saved on materials cost there. We also already had white paint for other projects and the walls (another cost savings) and the knobs I found in a 4-pack at Marshalls for $4.99. Can’t beat it!

Although this was a little extra work on top of all the other finishing touches like paint, trim, caulking, more painting, cleaning, etc. it was totally worth it and we have a completely custom piece that finish the space!

Gallery Wall Inspiration

As we near the finishing touches for our master suite, there is one wall that is completely random the room is also in need of a dedicated place to add a pop of color and make a statement (you’ll soon see the randomness when final photos are posted).

So I’ve been thinking… gallery wall! But when I go to look for inspiration I can’t find a happy medium of what I am looking for, since my ideal gallery wall is all the same, evenly spaced and matched up, like the one below.  A lot of the gallery walls I find are either simple and uniform (not what I’m going for in this space) or completely over done and just too much. Like I said, I want happy medium.

Generations of wedding days. Also like this layout for travel pics:

Here is some of my inspiration and my go-to places for finding the perfect mix of unique, personal, and colorful items for a gallery wall, especially if you’re trying to mix up the mold without over killing it!  Places like Marshall’s/TJMaxx/Home Goods are perfect to find different pieces and pops of color, I also love websites like Society 6 for unique pieces of art that’re trendy and different.  My friend Lucy; also creates insanely cute floral letters and unique hand-drawn prints which truly give your gallery wall an authentic feel.  Another goal for mine is to have a mix of textures and materials, I’m thinking, wood accents, metal frames, or elements of gold to really pop and add dimension.

Gallery Wall Inspiration - the bee life
01 | 02 | 03 | 04 | 05 | 06

I already have some pieces at home that’re laying around to help get this statement gallery wall started! I just want to be sure to have a good mix of girly and masculine, since it’s also B’s space, any hints or suggestions on how to incorporate that aspect into the mix?

My Latest Obessions

Taking a page from Andy Cohen’s book, HERE’S WHAT I’m obsessed with when it comes to home decor… because I have an entire master suite I am dying to decorate.

Neutrals – White and grey! More please!! I love creating a blank canvas to be able decorate and accessorize with pops of color.  Not to mention white and bright makes a room look 10x bigger, who doesn’t want their room to look bigger?


Floral Accents – This is my way to incorporate a little girly into a space without being totally overt with pink walls … like I would love to do. *smiles* I am completely in love with these pillows and they’re even prettier in real life – because they have flecks of gold in them. *swoon* The candle from Anthropologie also has flecks of gold and an incredible scent.


Navy and Gold – I mean… do I even need to explain? This is one of the most beautiful and classic pairings, in my humble opinion, especially when these colors are used as accents they can make a big impact, although if overdone not so hot.

I won’t lie – you’ll see a few of these beauties in our master suite when it’s all finished. What’re you currently obsessing over? That piece you’ve been eyeing have pinned AND favorited on your Pinterest board.

Product Links:
Neutrals: Unfinished Nights Stands | Upholstered Fabric Chair | Shag Rug
Florals: Pillows | Candle
Navy and Gold: Handsome/Gorgeous Frames | Ottoman | DIY Curtains

Attic Update – 6 months

We’re just over the 6-months into this project, yes definitely longer than both B and I anticipated – but hey! What can you do? Attic Renovatoin Update - Month 6 - the bee life - emilyboylan.comAs fantastic as the holidays were, they definitely helped delay progress as two back-to-back weekends were filled with parties, family, and endless amounts of food and drinks. Two, back-to-back weekends where virtually zero work took place in the attic.

Since, B has been back at it and focusing the weekends on mudding! Damn, mudding. Oh and then there is the sanding… and then more mudding… oh and then you sand again! The endless messy… messy cycle.  All “joking” aside, progress is being made, there are complete sections that’re ready to go and they look so great!

The bi-fold doors for our closets have also been installed, since the last update, and it really makes the space feel like a room. Since we bought the house the closets have been wide open so that was an awesome piece to finish!

Another update is that we ordered furniture for our sitting area along with nightstands, it’s getting us really excited (and anxious) to get on to the next part of the project; painting and trim work – so that we can decorate and live up there! I am obsessed with the chairs, they’re absolutely perfect.

As many times as we’ve wanted to hire someone to get this done, mainly because it would be much faster than our time frame, it’s truly awesome that we (but really, mostly B) have done 95% of the work, building a room from the studs, to insulation, to drywall, to paint, to life.

Hopefully next month we have a fresh coat of paint on the walls!



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
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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?