How to Create an Indoor Flowering Cactus Garden

Obaz

Spring is all about flowers but keeping fresh flowers in the house all the time can get expensive!  Enter the indoor desert oasis of the mini cactus garden.  It’s adorable, right?  The textures and colors make this perfect for adding visual interest to the flat lines of your kitchen or bathroom and it’s easy to do.

A Beautiful Mess

via HGTV

When to Start: Spring

At Its Best: Early Summer

Time to Complete: 1 1/2 hours

Materials Needed:

  • shallow planting bowl
  • pebbles
  • cacti soil
  • sand
  • newspaper
  • spoon
  • heavy-duty gloves
  • watering can
  • miniature cacti; this selection includes: silver torch cactus, Mammillaria, elephant-ear pricklypear and Rebutia

Before You Start

Cacti famously survive on little water, but if you want them to grow and flower they should actually be watered regularly during the growing season. Giving them a thorough watering before planting will help the roots make good contact with the new soil, and they should grow very well.

HGTV

Aid Drainage

All cacti hate to sit in water, so make sure it will run freely through the growing medium, and out of the bottom of the pot. The container should have lots of drainage holes, covered by a layer of pebbles, to prevent the soil from clogging up the holes.

HGTV

Set Out the Plants

Put on your protective gloves and start arranging your plants. If you have chosen the position for each of your cacti before you start, planting will be easier and you are more likely to end up with a good overall effect. It makes sense to put smaller ones at the front and larger ones at the back, but also consider planting those with different habits, textures and flower color next to each other.

HGTV

Planting Tips

Wrap a folded strip of newspaper around the top of the plant. This will help you slide it out of its pot and maneuver it into the larger planter without getting spines or fine hairs in your fingers. It also protects the plant.

HGTV

Fill in the Gaps

Once the plants are in position, use a spoon to carefully fill the gaps between them with a cacti soil. Add small amounts of soil at a time and keep firming it down with the back of a spoon to ensure that there are no air holes left around the plant roots.

HGTV

Brush Off Soil

No matter how careful you are, some soil will inevitably get caught in the cactus spines and hairs. Use a soft brush to remove it and to keep the plants looking clean and neat.

HGTV

Water the Plants

Water all the plants in well. In summer, they can be watered whenever the surface of the soil dries out. In winter, they should be left dry; start watering again sparingly when you see signs of growth in spring.

HGTV

Apply a Sand Mulch

Use the spoon to spread fine sand around the surface of the planter. This helps water quickly drain away from the surface, preventing rot, and gives the planter an authentic desertlike appearance. Set your arrangement in a bright, sunny position.

HGTV

Top Tip: Watering Crowded Pots

Cacti are often sold when the plants are almost overflowing the sides of their pots, making it tricky to water them properly before planting. Sit these in a container of water until the root ball is damp.

HGTV

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Smart Tiles..Before and After Makeover

Last weekend I decided it was time to revamp my kitchen and I wanted to start by doing a tile back splash.  Neither my husband or I are very “handy,” and by that I mean our tool box is not a box at all but rather a small duffel bag. The thought of grout and a wet saw was a bit overwhelming.  I had almost given up until I came across these Smart Tiles at Home Depot.  I will be honest…at between $6.97 and around $10.00 for a 9.7 x 10.95 in. wall tile they are not much cheaper than the real thing.  What they do offer, however, is a quick and easy makeover with little to no mess and I was super impressed by the results.

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This was our starting point.  I read some tutorials and hit up YouTube for installation recommendations and all suggested wiping off the wall with a degreaser or all-in-one cleaner prior to placing the wall tiles.  Other than that, all we needed was a straight edge and a box cutter.

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The sheets or wall tiles are peel and stick so getting them up on the wall was the easy part.  The challenge was making sure that they were lined up correctly.  If you take this project on this Spring make sure to do your measurements!

All together I had the tiles in place and the outlet covers back on in about 3.5 hours.  Here is the finshed product!

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Although to me the tiles look pretty great on their own, I added a line of white caulking between the Smart Tiles and the counter tops to give it a more realistic feel.  Total cost was about $120 and the kitchen looks like a totally new space.  Clean up took just a few minutes…love it!

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10 Clothing Storage Solutions…Perfect for Every Space

Bonanza

Bonanza

Hanging and folding clothes is not my forte.  In fact, I try to avoid laundry at all costs.  I love to clean and mop and dust and decorate…I just really, really hate laundry.  Can anyone else relate?  With that in mind I am constantly looking for easy ways to organize clothes – making the transition from the dryer to the closet seamless and if possible skipping the whole folding thing all together.  We’re in an apartment for the time being so for now space is an issue too.  If you’re in a flat or studio apartment then creating a closet space is really the biggest challenge.  Here are some great clothing storage solutions for any type of home and for anyone who hates folding as much as I do!

Apartment Therapy

Apartment Therapy

I love this because traditionally if you’re in an apartment you’re stuck with white walls.  Hanging your clothes is plain site brings in a lot of color and texture and besides, what could be easier than standing up on your bed and deciding what to wear!

Ifra Lahell

Ifra Lahell

Whimsical and perfect for displaying clothes in a nursery or toddlers room.

FFFFound

FFFFound

My husband has a hundred hats and I find them laying all over the place which is why this set up would be great for him.  The idea of a shelf and hanging bar would be excellent for heels and skirts as well.  Displaying a picture over the clothes storage area completes the look.

Ikea

Ikea

Oh, IKEA…stop making things that I want to buy.

We Heart It

We Heart It

Closet systems are available everywhere and are relatively inexpensive.  This one is a shoe rack, dresser and hanging closet combined.  I love the colorful storage boxes; they give this a polished look.

SF Bay Girl

SF Bay Girl

This is a guys room down to every last detail.  The clothes are easily accessible and organized and they look perfect hanging in this space (which helps if you’re bringing a girl over).

Radical Possibilities

Radical Possibilities

I have to admit, this is one of my favorites.  All you need is some hardware and a corner.  Utilizes every inch of space which is vitally important when space is limited.

https://reclaimingyourcastle.files.wordpress.com/2013/07/e6af5-closet.jpg

Source Unknown

Vintage perfection.  You can find these salvaged pieces at any thrift shop and mimic the set up of any prefabricated storage system.  Love this.

51bb3384d9127e121400009f._w.540_s.fit_

Apartment Therapy

Again, accessibility is key and with this you can go from the laundry basket to hanging in one step.  The natural look is nice here, too.

Be Different Act Normal

Be Different Act Normal

Finding creative ways to organize accessories can be challenging – all this is from a cork board!  Very cool.

7 Centerpieces for Your 4th of July Table…

4july6

Controlling Craziness

So, we’re getting closer to the 4th and now that we’ve figured out who’s bringing the cold pasta salad and jello mold we can focus on decorating the table, right?!?  This is my favorite part because for me, the decorations are what pulls everything together and gives the day meaning outside of just a family get together.  I’ve come across a lot of fun and festive July 4th centerpieces in the last few days – here are the ones at the top of my list!

#1. 

Controlling Craziness

BHG

Look for inexpensive lanterns at your local consignment or thrift shop and pick up a few cans of spray paint.  These don’t come around often though, so if all else fails you can find them at IKEA for relatively cheap.

#2. 

Giggles Galore

Giggles Galore

So easy!  Bright container, fresh fruit and marshmallow…this one can be admired and eaten simultaneously!

#3.

Top Dreamer

Top Dreamer

I love this idea because I have 4,000 glass vases (ok, that might be a slight exaggeration) lying around my house…a festive ribbon, a $2.50 bag of Twizzlers and your set.  This is a perfect option for the decor procrastinator.

#4.

Decor for the Holidays

Decor for the Holidays

You can’t go wrong with fresh flowers and I love the vintage look of the tag.  Add a few pops of red to round things out…sometimes the simpler the better.

#5.

BHG

BHG

Blue glass can be found everywhere from Dollar General to Wal-Mart and you may even have some stashed in your cabinets.  How amazing do they look in a collection of heights with stems of red flowers?

#6.

Chicken Scratch NY

Chicken Scratch NY

If you have access to scrap wood or wood cutting materials, get yourself 3 cuts at varying heights , drill a small hole in the center an inch or so deep and fill with wax.  Use rope to simulate a wick and paint to finish.  Follow the picture link for the complete tutorial…love these!

#7. 

BHG

BHG

Scrapbook paper is a great medium for decorations any time and the 4th of July is no exception.  For this piece, roll a section of festive paper and adhere with glue.  Cut a circle, add a slit and glue together for the topper.  Add sand to a metallic tin to hold your fireworks in place.

10 Color Combinations for a Beautiful Bedroom…

Fabulous Home Blog

Fabulous Home Blog

I love introducing new color combinations into my bedroom – I recently went from greens and yellows to browns and blues and the change is really nice!  There was a time (unfortunately not too long ago) where I thought the more color the better…blue bedspread, green curtains, yellow pillows and a red throw…yeah, that kind of works, right?  (My husband very graciously let me work through that phase in my own time.). What I found though was that focusing in on one or two complimentary colors and adding in neutrals around them really gives the room a polished finish and allows the eyes to rest.

Here are 10 beautiful color combinations to consider for your room!

#1.  Pink and Green

The Suite Life Designs

The Suite Life Designs

#2.  Blue and Orange

Northern Lights

Northern Lights

#3.  Gold and Navy Blue

Style Design Life

Style Design Life

#4.  Purple and Teal

Turn View

Turn View

#5.  Orange and Brown

Coastal Living

Coastal Living

#6.  Greyed Jade and Salmon

Decor Hound

Decor Hound

#7.  Pink and Navy Blue

Sheridan French

Sheridan French

#8.  Brown and Red

Style at Home

Style at Home

#9.  Brown and Pale Blue

Sunday in Bed

Sunday in Bed

#10.  Coral and Taupe

Fabulous Home

Fabulous Home Blog

And here’s mine!

Reclaiming Your Castle

Reclaiming Your Castle

Transforming Mini Blinds into Chic Roman Shades…Weekend DIY

 

The Happiness of Living

The Happiness of Living

Window treatments can totally update the look and feel of a room but they can be so expensive!  Thanks to The Little Green Notebook that’s not a problem anymore.  Take your old, unflattering white blinds and use the bones of the slats and pull string to create custom roman shades – with no sewing at all!!!

via The Little Green Notebook

Supplies–
Tape measure
Scissors
Fabritac (or comparable fabric glue – NOT HOT GLUE!)
Mini blinds (like the $3 Target mini blinds)
Fabric (yardage depends on the size of your window)
Trim (optional)

1. Measure you windows carefully. Then do some math and figure out how many folds you want in your shade. I like the look of a fold every 9 inches, which meant I only needed 6 slats for my small windows.

Little Green Notebook

Little Green Notebook

2. Let out the blinds all the way, making them the longest they can be. Carefully cut away all of the thin tilting/ladder-like strings, being very careful not to cut the thicker lift cord. I simply ran my scissors along the top of the slats, cutting away the tilt strings and avoiding the lift string altogether.
3. Take out the plastic plugs from the bottom of the miniblinds and remove and put aside the thick bottom slat piece (you’ll need this later). Then simply pull off most of the slats, while leaving the few you’ll need for the folds of the shade. Like I mentioned before, I only needed six slats for my shade.

Little Green Notebook

4. Make sure the blinds are still let out all the way. Measure carefully and reinstall the thick bottom slat so that the length of your window and the full length of the shade are roughly the same. I decided to make my shade about 1″ longer than my window measurement. Just to make sure it would be long enough.

Trim the extra cord away off the bottom.

Now cut out your fabric, using the shade skeleton as your pattern and leaving a 2.5 inch (or so) border on all sides.

5. Congrats! You’re done with the hard part! You should have something that looks like this:

Little Green Notebook

Little Green Notebook

It’s time to start gluing.

6. Start with the top of the shade. Fold over and glue the fabric together to make a clean edge and glue that to the front of the big top rail mount. **NOTE: Do not glue the folded hem to the very ends of the rail mount. You need to be able to slip the rail into the wall-mounted brackets, so the fabric needs to stay unglued on the very ends.

7. Measure 9″ (or your preferred fold length) from the top of the rail. Adjust and glue a slat into place. Continue all the way down, gluing the slats to the fabric. I glued the rounded, convex side of the slat to the fabric so there was more slat-to-fabric contact. Make sure not to glue the lift cord to the slats or the fabric.

8. Glue, turn in and glue again the three other sides of the shade to finish off all the edges. Let it all dry.

9. (Optional) Glue on some trim to the bottom slat. I picked up some super, super tiny ball trim at JoAnn’s for less than $1 a yard. (only needed one yard)

Little Green Notebook

Little Green Notebook

10. Hang up the shades just like hanging up mini blinds. The cord still functions the same way and, as long as you didn’t glue the lift cord to your slats or fabric, the shade should lift and fold beautifully.

 

Affordable Updates for a Classic Kitchen…

SF Girl By Bay

SF Girl By Bay

I love the look of shiny granite counter tops and big stainless steel appliances but that’s not the only way to showcase a lovely kitchen.  If you’re in a position where remodeling doesn’t fall within your budget, consider some bright paint colors and imaginative storage and display options to revamp a retro, classic kitchen…it can be just as quaint for a fraction of the cost.

Fluxi ion Tour

Fluxi ion Tour

Look for modern signature pieces – a bold lampshade or pendant light, a contemporary piece  of art, bright dishes in interesting hues or clever decals like the LOVE emblem above.

Design Sponge

Design Sponge

This is clearly an older kitchen, but the bright tea cups and bold color choice in shelving make that an afterthought.  Despite the outdated cabinetry this looks very cute and welcoming.

Feita De Detalhes

Feita De Detalhes

Love the bursts of colors here against white board paneling.  Using light blues throughout pull in the dated tile and make it feel purposeful and unique.

Daily Dream Decor

Daily Dream Decor

An apartment kitchen can be small and boring but this one is so colorful and visually interesting that the plain white cabinets fade completely into the background.  Notice the bursts of yellow that keep things light and help pull everything together.

Here are a few more beautifully classic kitchens updated with charm…

Follow Pics

Follow Pics

We Heart It

We Heart It

Martha Stewart

Martha Stewart

Source Unknown

Source Unknown