Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Easy Fabric Wall Art!

By now you know that I love the fabric store!

Whenever I shop....I find these wonderful hunks of fabric that just seem to find their way to "Sweetwater"!

Here is a fun and inexpensive way that I have found to use the fabric on the walls!


I had a big old frame with no glass that was sitting in the basement.  I wrapped this great floral print around it and stapled it to the frame!
A good blogger would have a whole tutorial about how to do this....but seriously...you don't need one...just stretch and staple!!!
In fact you could probably use your glue gun if you wanted to!

 "Just do it!"

Instant Wall Art for a big wall in the dining room!

The dark colors are great in the fall and winter....but I wanted to brighten up the feel of the room for the summer.....

Soooo.....I looked through the piles of fabric for something summery....no luck!
Then....
AHA! I could follow through with my "Use What I've Got Challenge" 
BECAUSE.... I found this table cloth that I made last summer....it was the PERFECT print!

Sooo...even though it wasn't quite big enough with the hem....so I took that out...ironed it flat...
....stretched it right over the wintery fabric and stapled it on!

Now look!
Bright and Cheerful and Much More of a Summer Look!

It took about 30 minutes....and cost NADA!


 So get yourself to the fabric store....or shop your own fabric stash...tee hee!
Wouldn't these fabrics make a great statement?


HMMMMMMMM!

I just came across this marvelous post from Diane over at In My Own Style ! 
She uses Vinyl Tablecloths and foam insulation to make outdoor art! I think this is absolutely brilliant!   I guess great minds think alike....you really should hop over and check out Diane's wonderful blog!



And be sure to scroll down through the post below and enter to win the "My Memories Software Suite" (contest closes on Sunday!)!

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The Answer is Chocolate   Family Ever After  Cherished Treasures Homemaker In Heels 
Saturday SHowcase   SUmo's SweetStuff Cure For The Common Monday You Are Talking too Much
Freckled Laundry   

Sunday, May 27, 2012

My Memories Give Away

 
I am doing my very first Give Away Contest....
This is a sponsored giveaway by My Memories Digital Scrapbooking Software.


 When the nice folks at My Memories Software contacted me with an offer to review their digital scrapbooking software product I was intrigued.

I have never done a sponsored post or a giveaway....but

The offer to download and review the My Memories software for free and give it a try was a chance to good to pass up!


My Memories Software
 I am really having fun with this and I will show you some of the things I have used it to make.....but first here is how YOU can enter to win your own copy.

All you have to do to enter is do one or more of the following:

entry 1: go to the My Memories website and under "themes", take a look at what they have to offer, and leave a comment telling me your favorite item.

entry 2: join the My Memories mailing list by signing up at their website or their blog. Leave a comment telling me you signed up. 

entry 3: become a new follower of Sweetwater Style or if you are already a follower, leave a comment telling me you follow.

I will use random.org to choose a name one week from today. Please be sure to provide a way for me to get in touch with you if your email isn't in your profile.

Now here are a few things I have done since I downloaded the software.... and started playing!
I really don't do much paper scrap booking....but I am always trying out new things with digital photo layouts....and this product is a great way to do that!

These cute little photo plaques were my gift to my Mom on Mother's Day.
I had them ready to go....but the photos I wanted to use needed some "jazzing up" and a way to look cohesive.... My Memories  to the rescue! 




I used the software to create a layout....sent the easily saved .jpgs to Walgreeens....and for less than a dollar...the prints all coordinated!

Brilliant....I was so impressed with the quality of the image!








I was part of a group gift for a Double Baby Shower at school last week.....We did Target Gift Cards....but needed a fun way to present them to the Moms to Be....
I used the My Memories  software to create this cute poster.....printed it out....
I attached a pair of Baby Booties with the gift card.....put it in a fancy envelope with some curling ribbon....
Pretty cute if I say so myself...tee hee!

I am excited to keep exploring the possibilities...hmmmm...
I am going to try to create some templates for displaying photos on blog posts...(the photo at the top of this post was done using My Memories)

I have at least 3 photo books in the works....now maybe I will finish them!

But in the meantime...I hope you enter take the time to visit My Memories....enter and Good Luck!

 If you just can't wait and you'd like to buy the software, just go to My Memories and use code 12041MMBlogsal to get $10 off the price of the My Memories Suite V3 PLUS $10 off in the My Memories store!. 






Saturday, May 26, 2012

Easy Fountain on the Deck Redux

Yikes...I just realized that it has been a whole week since I posted!
I haven't forgotten you, but this time at school gets soooo busy that it has to take priority.

We are off to the Farmer's Market this morning to buy a few plants....tee hee....!
But seriously I have a BIG problem....
Look....


Remember when I just stuck some perennials in the pots so they didn't look "naked"?
Well...now they look "all dressed up" and they really don't need any thing else...

And even worse....
Here is the planter that is supposed to have the Good Will Fountain on it....how can I possibly rip it apart?  But the planter is perfect and when it looks so great right there....oh dear...oh dear....
Okay....looking at the pictures...there really is no other choice...the fountain wins!
And I will buy begonias at the Farmer's Market this morning.

Here is a recap of the "Fountain from a GoodWill Find" post from last summer.

Take one GoodWill Find:  Tarnished copper table top fountain. $6.99

Spend 2 hours scrubbing the yucky mineral deposits off of the fountain.
Spend another 20 minutes arranging the elements in the pot.
Use 10 seconds to plug it in.
Waste 2 hours totally sitting on the deck listening to the splashing water.

This was so simple!
Try it!

I love the idea of a water features.
The Sweetwater Daughter has an amazing waterless pool and fountain.
  My brother and sister-in-law build water features and have an amazing pond and waterfall at Willow Ridge Gardens.


Several of our friends have beautiful fountains in their yards that make me soooo jealous!




Mr. S. says, "We don't need a fountain.  The pond in the backyard is the water feature!"

Maybe so, but I still wanted a fountain!
"Pout Pout "
I have found all kinds of plans for building fountains in planters.  In all honesty, when I look at the plans they give me a headache!  The plans involve way too much work, supplies and time to do.

Now using the little copper fountain I found at Goodwill, some Bar Keeper's Friend, a planter I already had and some plants.... I have my fountain!

So keep your eyes open the next time you are out at a garage sale or GoodWill....or maybe you have a little fountain tucked away in your closet.

I found these at Amazon if you are too impatient to wait till you find a "deal". 


So now we are off to the Market....hope I can keep Mr. S. away from the peony plants....we already have ENOUGH!!!

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Polly Want a Crafter    Ninth Street Notions  Creative Southern Institute 
My 1929 Charmer  Cure For the Common Monday  A Pinch of Joy The Kurtz Corner
Chic on a Shoestring   Finding Fabulous   
Tickled Pink   Lolly Jane  

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Guest Posting Today!

 I am guest posting today over at
Chicken Scratch      

You really need to hop over there and take a look at Alecia's fun blog....
Although how she ever has time to blog with her 5 acres and huge menagerie of pets!
Hmmmm....and she is only 23 years old....!

Anyway, Alecia is doing a series of posts about planning a wedding on a budget!
I figured that was something I could do!

The post is all about avoiding china rental costs or settling for paper plates by shopping at thrift stores!  Hop on over to Chicken Scratch and read all about it!


Enjoy your day...it is supposed to rain here today....good...we need the moisture!


Saturday, May 19, 2012

Dave....17 Good Years!


 
"Dogs come when they're called; cats take a message and get back to you later." 

That might be true for most cats....but our good friend Dave...
came when you snapped your fingers!
After 17 years of companionship...we had to say good-bye to him!
He will be missed!

 

Friday, May 18, 2012

My Trick for Extending the Peony Season!

Are your peonies in bloom yet?
Mine are almost....almost.....but probably 2 weeks from full bloom!
I walked through the garden last night and was amazed to see that....


The little shoots that looked like this just a month ago....
Now look like THIS!
 And even better....THIS!
 I can hardly wait until the whole side yard is filled with peonies....
I can hardly wait until I can fill vases and vases with these showy blooms...
Alas...the blooming season for Peonies is short and often affected by late spring rainstorms!




The Sweetwater Daughter got married in June and wanted Peonies for the main flowers....

I did my research and discovered this trick....and it REALLY WORKS!

We were able to have some of the early blooming peonies in the wedding bouquets...long after the plants were done!

Did you know you can keep peony buds refrigerated for up to 3 weeks?

But let me show you what I did last year!





I cut peony blooms that were in the soft marshmallow stage....and that had no moisture on them.


I cut the stems pretty long...10-12 inches.







They got loosely wrapped in newspaper....


If you have cellophane or a plastic bag that is nice to put around them as well...

I stacked them up pretty high...but I didn't pack them tightly.
 







I left them in the refrigerator for 3 weeks....I think 2 weeks would have been better...
To be honest...I forgot they were in there...until Mr. S started complaining about "no room for beer!!!"




 I took them out of the refrigerator....
Made new cuts on each stem and put them in fresh warm water.




Then I waited.....
and waited....
and worried that I had left them for tooo long...

but 12 hours later....





They started to perk up and fill out....


Whew!!!!










Here are the flowers after a day....

SUCCESS!








Blooms that are stored this way don't last quite as long in the arrangements....but hey....I wasn't complaining when I had Peonies in the house in the last week of JUNE!

Here's to the Power of Peonies....!



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Twigg Studios   Cherished Treasures  A Vision to Remember  Homemaker in Heels Nifty Thrifty Things
Ninth Street Notions Coastal Charm Singing Three Little Birds Polly Want A Crafter Masterpiece Monday
Type A Decorating  Hope Studios Terrific Under Ten Tales of a Trophy Wife Creations by Kara  
Bargain Shopping Paradise    Night Owl Crafting  



Saturday, May 12, 2012

Twinkle Twinkle....Deck Lighting! Another Redux!

This is a post that I wrote last summer....it seems to be a good one to revisit as the Spring evenings just get nicer and nicer!

I love the quote from the movie "You've Got Mail" when Kathleen announces that all will be fine, but "in the meantime, I'm putting up more twinkle lights."
That's how I feel about the twinkle lights on our deck.
 Sweetwater Style calls for simple, easy, inexpensive elegance.  This solution is almost too easy.

Sunday, May 6, 2012

I've Got the Blues!





I've got the blues....in the garden!
But these blues make me HAPPY not sad!






The first flowers that bloom in my garden are blue!
I think I appreciate these beauties more because they are the first!!!








Here is the lamium...it is cropping up everywhere...


I love this shade loving perennial plant.  There are lots of varieties with different variations of leaves and flowers.







I even put some in the spring planters so they don't look so "naked" while I wait to get the annuals in!






The root structure is crazy wild....sometimes I just pull it up out of the rocks and put it in the ground somewhere else!!!



Once you get this plant established in your yard...it is almost like a weed!

But it is an awfully pretty shade loving weed!













These little Forget-Me-Nots have a fun history....the original plants were from seeds the Sweetwater Daughter and her Grandma brought me back from a trip they took to Alaska over 15 years ago.  I keep transplanting and letting the little volunteers grow.
These popped up in the rocks in the front walk...and I didn't have the heart to "weed" them!

If you plant Forget-me-nots from seed....the trick is to put them in the freezer for a couple of days before you plant them!



When the Brunnera blooms...it is a bright spot in the garden....and would you believe that the deer don't like it?

It transplants well...and I move it all over because I love to see it in bloom and the plant is nice and sturdy all season long (if you dead head it)

It does well in the almost full shade...there is a bit of sun for it in the morning.






 

Soon the Mountain Centaurius plants will bloom....but alas only if we spray them with deer repellent because they are a favorite for our local herd!

I think this plant likes full sun....but it handles the spots in the partial shade all right!

I just don't have much in the way of full sun...so I try things in the partial shaded areas and see what happens...



I see quite a few biennial Columbine plants in odd little spots....in a couple weeks they will add more blue!







In early spring, I can never bring myself to weed out the wild violets

or

the Johnny Jump Ups









When summer comes...I am not so kind...I rip those babies out by the bucket full....but now they are bright spots in an otherwise green garden!







So for the moment....until the big show of Peonies, Poppies and Iris starts....
I am Lovin' These little Blues!