Monday, April 30, 2012

Bistro Set Makeover…

Back in March, I posted about our “Angry Birds” situation, and the havoc they were creating on our lake cabin outdoor furniture…you can read that post here. For some strange reason the birds were pecking at, and destroying the cushions on our bistro set chairs…


Last weekend we went up to the cabin for some R&R and a little work too. I was able to replace all of the cushions on the chairs, and gave the whole little bistro set a fresh new makeover…


After cutting new plywood rounds for the base of the seat…I then purchased some new foam and cut out new cushions…




Next, I traced and cut the new fabric purchased for the cushions. This is an outdoor fabric that I found at a local discount fabric warehouse…I like the brightly colored flowers and leaves on the black background…




The table base, and chairs all got a fresh new coat of black spray paint in a high gloss finish…



…nice view!

Here is how I spent the time waiting for the paint to dry between coats…


You know what they say about “all work and no play”! It was a beautiful weekend and so nice to be able to enjoy the weather and have a little fun.

After I put it all together, our outdoor bistro set now looks much better…


I love the fresh flowers, collected from our friends cabin across the street. They have had their cabin for 30+ yrs. and have a wonderful yard full of flowering shrubs and fruit trees. I could not resist cutting a few blooms to enjoy on our patio…


I purposely made all of the chair cushions removable, so I will be able to bring them inside when we leave…





Now, when we are gone, those pesky birds will have to find something else to cushion their nest!

How are you sprucing up your outdoor furniture? New cushions? Pillows? Paint?

Linking up to...Uncommon Designs, Savvy Southern Style, Thrifty Decor Chick

Friday, April 27, 2012

Sprucing up the yard…part 1

In my last post, I talked about filling a couple of my outdoor pots with new foliage and color. It started with a trip to the Home Depot garden department for all the necessary supplies…


I already have 2 pots that I purchased years ago…


As I talked about in the last post seen here…I will be using 3 types of plants in each pot. Commonly referred to as the thriller, filler, and spiller technique.  I like to start with the largest/tallest plant - the “thriller”…

New Zealand Flax Bronze

I chose an ornamental grass called New Zealand Flax Bronze. I like the height and texture this type of grass adds, with its sharp spiked leaves and mix of green and bronze colors. I positioned it toward the back of the pot in order to leave room for the other plants to be added.

Next, I usually like to add the “spiller” plant…

Bacopa Gulliver White

One of my favorite “spillers” to use is Bacopa. This low growing plant is perfect to use for hanging baskets, tucked into rock walls, or even as a small scale groundcover. It produces white blossoms spring though fall. I love the way it looks when it grows and cascades over the sides of the pot

Finally, time to add the “filler” or flowers to the pot. I tuck them in between the other two plants…literally filling in the spaces in between…


Since these two pots will be in the shade part of the day I decided to use Impatiens. They come in a wide variety of colors…these are a mix of orange, red, and white. I chose these colors to accent some new pillows I will be adding to our Adirondack chairs nearby…currently awaiting their own facelift!




Here it is…tucked into a shady corner of the yard, under my hanging bird feeder. It feels great to have one project done…and crossed off the list!

Next, I will be sprucing up some of my existing yard art…and showing you a few new whimsical pieces, recently added to the yard for fun…


Stay tuned!

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Outdoor Potted Plants...

Motivated by the high school graduation party I am planning for my son, we have been working hard, sprucing up our backyard!

One of the quickest ways to add some color and style is to freshen up all of your outdoor pots. You know, the ones that had all of last years beautiful flowers and plants that did not quite make it through the winter months.

Outdoor plants

I have several large pots placed around our backyard in various spots. I like to use them for annual color and to add interest with different types of plants…varying the color, height, and texture.

Here are some excellent examples of how to layer plants and flowers to create a beautiful outdoor pot…

Inspired by a recent post from Kate of Centsational Girl seen here, I went shopping for some new plants and flowers for a couple of my outdoor pots. After reading Kate’s post, I had three words stuck in my head…thriller, filler, and spiller!

This technique basically means using 3 different types of foliage to fill your pots for maximum style and impact. The “thriller” is the center showpiece of your pot…preferably one that grows taller than the others. The “filler” is the flowers or blooms tucked in to provide fullness and color. Lastly, the “spiller” is just that…the one that spills out over the edge of your pot, to give that lush full look.

As I wandered around the Home Depot garden department…I kept repeating those three words in my head…thriller, filler, spiller…thriller, filler, spiller.  I think I even said it out loud a couple of times, which explains the odd looks from the other shoppers nearby!

After filling my cart, and then the back of my car, with a selection of flowers, plants, potting soil and more, I have my work cut out for me today…


It can be a lot of work, but I love that afterwards you have something beautiful to show for all of your effort.

How do you like to freshen up your outdoor pots for summer? Do you like working in the yard…getting potting soil under your fingernails?

Monday, April 23, 2012

Guest Post from Design Shuffle...

Recently, I was contact by Design Shuffle and asked to host a guest post featuring beautiful ideas for some fresh summer decor. I was thrilled to be recognized by this fabulous site, and I am even more thrilled to share it with you today.

Take it away Mari..
Hi, I’m Mari, a writer for Design Shuffle, a premier online portal where interior designers share their work and where design enthusiasts find inspiration for their projects. I am so happy to be here visiting Elegant Nest.

Today's guest post is about a very timely topic in certain parts of the world, summer-inspired interior spaces. This time of year in North America, it's out with the warm cozy design trappings of winter and in with light, airy and sometimes colorful decorating ideas for summer. Here are some of our favorites for your design inspiration. Please enjoy!

Summer Decor

What says summer more eloquently than a room with a sea view? A corner reading nook in Sarah Richardson's lovely summer house is all about a soft driftwood palette with subtle touches of blue.

Summer Decor

Even an elegant home can go coastal glam for the summer. Shells can sometimes be a bit overdone in décor, but not here. I love the giant shell as vessel sink.

Summer Decor Many of the interior design ideas used in this lofty painter's studio could be duplicated to add a summery feel to lots of different spaces—especially the large plants, white globe pendant lights and white paint on floors, walls and ceiling. Summer Decor

This pure white niche is the perfect place to show off seasonal decorative elements. The pale colors, contemporary motifs and floral touches exquisitely represent summer.

Summer Decor

A fabulously pretty dining nook is the perfect picture of summer inspiration. With subtle pattern and minty paint, this happy space would certainly get my summer days started off right!

Summer Decor

Fresh flowers and a turtle table make for summer décor at its best. All in all, this appealing cottage style living room inspires dreams of lazy summer days and breezy summer nights.

Summer Decor

Looking for quick and easy ways to add the look of summer to living room designs? Decorative throw pillows should top the list of summer décor fixes as the go-to decorative accessory of choice for instant design gratification. I love these big, bold and colorful flowers!

Summer Decor

A gorgeous backyard paradise, this one-room cottage getaway offers the ultimate way to celebrate a summer staycation.

Images 1| 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8

Who's ready for summer?!

Be sure to check out Design Shuffle for even more inspiration to get you prepared for summer.


Wow! Thank you Mari for all of the beautiful and inspiring images you have selected. I could move right in to several of those rooms. My favorite has to be that first image with the ocean views and the white chaise lounge. Give me a stack of books and magazines and I could spend all summer in this exact spot!

For more inspiration, be sure to visit Design Shuffle and check out their Blog and Design Gallery.
I am sure you will love their site as much as I do.

Thanks again Mari, Kristen,  and the whole team at Design Shuffle.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

The Liebster Blog Award

As a newer blogger, one of my favorite aspects of this new venture is the incredibly supportive blogging community. I have “met” and connected with some wonderfully talented and helpful people in these last few months.

Last week, Elegant Nest received The Liebster Blog Award from Alicia over at the blog Sweet Ava Kate. I was so surprised, and honored to be recognized by Alicia. She is very talented and friendly and I am looking forward to a long blogging friendship!

The Liebster Blog Award promotes blogs with less than 200 followers, as a way to get their names out there. Apparently, Liebster means 'beloved or dearest,' but it can also mean 'favorite.'
As a Liebster award recipient, I now have the opportunity to pass this award on to five other bloggers.

In order to accept this award, the recipient must do the following:

1. Thank the person that presented the award.
2. Link back to that person(s) blog.
3. Copy and paste the award to your blog.
4. Present the award to 5 bloggers with less than 200 followers
(bloggers who you think deserve this special recognition)
5. Let those deserving bloggers know by leaving them a comment.

And the award goes to…

Elizabeth @ The Little Black Door – I first found her blog through a link about her hallway makeover post…and I was an immediate fan! I love all of her before and after photos that showcase her talented eye.
Erin @ The Great Indoors – I found her blog when she sent me a nice comment back in March about one of my projects. After visiting her blog I knew it would become a favorite. I love her sense of humor and sense of design.
Lauren @ Simply LKJ – The funny thing about Lauren is that we have not officially “met” but I feel like we already know each other! The reason…we follow a lot of the same blogs and whenever I send a comment I notice that Lauren has already been there, and usually says exactly what I am thinking! We obviously have the same taste and opinions…we should meet for coffee and chat!
Laura @ Cookie Crumbs & Sawdust – This sweet lady writes so open and honest, you cant help but love her blog posts. She is currently renovating a 1960’s home which is something I can relate to – mine was built in 1967!
Gina @ A Sense of Design – This talented lady lives in Australia and I absolutely love her sense of style! She lives in a cottage near Sydney and her House Tour is not to be missed. From the blooming hydrangeas near her front porch, to the perfectly eclectic main bedroom – beautiful!
Thank You Alicia for sending me the Leibster Award…and to all my readers for their encouragement and support! I look forward to continuing this new venture, learning new things every day and meeting new friends along the way!

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

It’s about time…

Ever since seeing this image from Brooke Gianetti’s home tour on her beautiful blog  Velvet & Linen, I have been in love with Swedish clocks…

I have had this image in my inspiration files for a couple of years now…and I still love it.
The clock pictured above is a Swedish Mora Clock. This style has an interesting history.  The Mora clock is a staple in the Swedish design. Mora clocks are a type of long case clock which were made in, and derived their name from, the town of Mora in Dalarna province, Sweden. The Swedish Mora clock first appeared in Stockholm during the Rococo Period in the mid-eighteenth century. You can find a more information on the website Cupboards and Roses, which specialize in Swedish antiques.

The Mora clock can be found in many shapes, sizes, and colors. I can honestly say I love them all…

Here are a few more of my favorite images featuring the Swedish Mora clock…


There are also hanging versions of the Mora clock which are equally as beautiful and would work well if there is limited space…


Finally, I want to include a shot of my, and many others, favorite movie set…
via “Something’s Gotta Give”
I could move right into this house…and not change a thing!

Do you like the look of the Swedish Mora clock? What is your favorite style of clock?

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