Simple Ways to Bring Fall Inside Your Home

As you know, I reside in Florida so the closest things we have to Fall at this time of the year are pumpkins and various colors of mums found in grocery stores in mid 80 to 90 temperatures. So it doesn’t really feel like Autumn around here and you MUST know that this is my absolute favorite season!!!

I miss being able to dress for this time of the year with all the layers, cozy  sweaters, jackets of all sorts and BOOTS! I MISS MY BOOTS!!! I remember the first year I moved to Florida, the day after Labor Day, I totally had my OTK boots on. I couldn’t tell you how silly I felt, as not only was I sweating in them but EVERYONE, and I mean EVERYONE were in flip flops, even the men, which you almost never see up North. But that’s not going to stop me from embracing all the warm hues and beautiful rustic elements of this season. I  might not be able to rock the oversized cozy sweaters and booties that have been blowing up my Instagram or take evening strolls watching the leaves grow old in vibrant colors of yellow, orange and red. But I can definitely sit inside the comfort of my cozy Autumn home sipping on a pumpkin spice latte in my super fuzzy slippers.

Here are a few easy ways to bring the beautiful season of Fall into your home:

1. You know Pumpkins were going to be on my list so it might as well be the first one. I can’t seem to resist them at this time of the year despite knowing very well that they will NOT last long given the Florida heat and humidity. Nothing screams Fall more than pumpkins. They come in various sizes and colors so make sure to grab a few and scatter them on your mantle, coffee table, entry way table, shelves and/or front porch. Instantly Fall has found its way into your home. If you prefer more of a neutral decor like myself, then white pumpkins/gourds are perfect for you.  IMG_6502.JPG

2. In fashion, plaid is a big hit at this time of the year.  This is when I love rocking button down shirts/flannels, my way of incorporating the season into my wardrobe even with the lack of cooler temps. This same trend can also be applied to the interior of your home. Plaid throw pillows and towels can easily be staples in every house and will allow you to maintain the color scheme of your decor. They never go out of style and really can be used anytime of the year. Texture and layering is quintessential to a cool Autumn day so this is a great time to add hearty texture to your decor. Bring out the faux fur, chunky knits and velvet throw blankets and pillows to add that touch of coziness.

Front-Entry-mirror-wreath-600x900

(Image found on todaycreativelife.com)

3. When I think of fall, I think of nature, being in the woods surrounded by trees with tons of leaves, some on the tree and some scattered on the ground. So add some rustic elements and wood tones to your decor. Replace a ceramic planter or vase with a wooden one and you’ll be surprised how warm your space will feel. LRG_DSC06354

4. Flowers are always a nice touch to every home. If you’re like me and can’t keep plants alive to save your life, flowers are a great way to add life and a pop of color to your home. To celebrate this season, add some mums to your front porch in rustic planters and you are set. Fresh cut sunflowers in a vase is another great way to showcase that warm Fall hue  in your decor.

Processed with VSCO with al3 preset

5. Yellow, Green, Orange, Red and Brown are the probably the colors that come to mind during this season. If that is your thing, by all means, incorporate these colors to your home. If you are like me and prefer a more neutral palette, instead of introducing bright orange pillows to your couch, find a more subtle way to introduce these tones to your home, such as adding amber glass jars/vases for your shelves or in my case, hand soap/lotion bottles. It doesn’t have to be extreme or over the top, subtle touches are often the most impactful!

Processed with VSCO with al3 preset

Also try shopping from your own house. It is likely that you have something stored away that you can reuse or repurpose and that is really the best way to shop! I brought out my olive-green hunter boots and placed it by the entry way for that extra touch of Fall. The reality is I NEVER wear them but you know what, that’s ok because it makes me happy! I also have an oversized plaid scarf that I’ve had since my days in Toronto and now I use it as a throw blanket for this time of the year.

I would love to hear what you have done to incorporate Fall into your home. Please feel free to share your tips in the comments below.

XO,

Kim,

 

 

How to Create a Fun and Simple Kid’s Halloween Tablescape.

Earlier this month, I shared my thought of creating a Fall tablescape with my Instagram followers and asked if they were interested in seeing a Thanksgiving or Halloween tablescape?  The vote was unanimous and the conclusion was Halloween. Everyone wanted something for their kids, so here it is!

Processed with VSCO with a6 preset

Initially I was going to put together a pretty and elegant Halloween table for you. Then I remembered that everyone that voted, voted because they wanted something fun to share with their kids. Having that in mind, my goal for this Halloween table was to create something that is:

  1. Simple
  2. Whimsical
  3. Affordable and
  4. Low-maintenance

Kids are messy and they probably couldn’t care less whether they are eating on fancy china with gold flatware or paper plates and plastic forks.

Processed with VSCO with a5 preset

Processed with VSCO with hb1 preset

To decorate my entire table, I opted to use some of my existing Halloween decorations such as the pumpkins, banners, candle holder, the faux blood napkin, halloween tree with ornaments and skeleton. So feel free to dig through your Halloween box tucked away in your garage or basement and see what you can use to create your own whimsical Halloween table. Everything else I purchased from the dollar section at Target: the broomsticks, the pumpkin paper plates, napkins, mini black caldron, faux plants, mini mason jars, paper straws and black tablecloth.

Processed with VSCO with hb1 preset

We absolutely LOVE Halloween in our family! As much as I didn’t want to make it over the top scary, I did want to add some of the traditional Halloween ghoul. That is why I decided to add the skeleton (Mr. Bones) in one of the seats to play up the fun factor and have him enjoy the meal with the kids. Now if anyone is scared, then he can easily be removed and put back into his grave :). I also added some faux spider webs over the centerpiece (the Halloween tree) but did not add any creepy crawlers because I wanted to keep it light and those could be too much while trying to enjoy a meal.

LRG_DSC06276

Processed with VSCO with a6 preset

My table was set outside because I live in Florida and there are very few months where a meal outside is actually enjoyable.  Since it is typically a bit cooler during the month of October, I figured this would be a great opportunity to eat outside. Also, I usually have some fun craft and decorating activities for the kids after their meal so keeping the mess outside would definitely help maintain my sanity.

To style this table I used less than $20 to purchase everything I needed, on top of the existing decor I already had. This was very simple and inexpensive to create. Your kids and their friends would absolutely love it, Even if you are not planning a kids party, why not simply enjoy a fun halloween family dinner with your kiddos! Enjoy guys and Happy Halloween!

XO,

Kim

Around the world and back

Hey guys,

I wanted to share with you a neat little idea I had for an activity that I could do with my boys and then use it as wall art for our house. I am also confident that this activity would strike up a conversation with our guests when they visit our home.

One of the many things that my husband and I share is our love for traveling. When we first started dated, we seriously listed out all the countries we have visited to determine who has travelled more between the two. LOL (we were such kids then). We both have done our fair share of independent traveling but have also taken some amazing and unforgettable trips together such as Greece, Italy and Iceland. Traveling is something we are both passionate about and plan to continue doing with our children. Having said that, if you’re a parent, you’ll know that traveling with children definitely has its challenges, from flight durations to time change, nap/sleep schedule, routine…the list goes on. As a result, we have definitely limited our traveling over the past 5 years. Both my boys have been on numerous plane rides, but for the most part, we try to keep our destinations within 3 hours of flying (with a few exceptions). Some of the places they have been to are: Dominican Republic, Toronto, Bahamas, Lake Louise, Seattle, and California.

My oldest child is 5 now and the youngest is turning 3 in a few weeks. For the first time, both my husband and I feel like we are ready to take on bigger adventures with them. This summer our family will be visiting Lisbon and the Algarve in Portugal for 2 weeks. While I am super excited about this trip, I am definitely nervous about it and no doubt, the stress level will be at its peak closer to the date.

With this trip and future trips in mind, I wanted to come up with something I could do with my boys to document the magical memories I plan on creating with them (yes, being SUPER optimistic here). I purchased a scratch map of the world online. Check out this one similar to the one I purchased.  This one from Walmart and this one from Etsy both seem like great options as well.

IMG_2621

Every country we visit, the boys can scratch that country off on the map to show where we have visited collectively as a family. I got the map framed at Hobby Lobby and now it is currently hanging in my office/dining room. Right next to it, I hung a Metal mesh grid panel. After each trip, I would let the boys select a few photos from our trip that they could print using our polaroid printer.   They can then hang it on the grid using bullnose clips or mini clothes hangers. How cute is that? To add a little dimension and some fun to it, I wrapped a fairy string light that I picked up from Target around the metal panel. I want to make sure the photos are visible so lighting was necessary.

IMG_1704

FullSizeRender

I love that this is something we could do together as a family for many years to come. It provides an opportunity for us to bond and reflect on our experiences and most memorable moments from our trip. Another thing I absolutely love about this idea is that a map is a pretty generic/standard piece of art but this is so personal and really reflects who we are as a family. If you know me and my style, you’ll know that I am a fan of making your home reflect you, your lifestyle and this is just that!

IMG_2630

IMG_2626

Now if you are looking to do something similar to this and not wanting to use a scratch map, you could also glue a map to a cork board sheet, get it framed (optional) and then pin the areas you have visited. I had a client  once who collected pins from every city/country he visited and used it to pin his map.

Pin map

Now all we need to do is start traveling and fill our wall with amazing memories! If you do end up doing something similar, I would love to see it, so please feel free to email me at xomyhome@gmail.com to share your creation and memories. Thanks for following along guys!

 

XO,

 

Kim

 

Styling one room for multiple purposes

Although I currently reside in Florida where there is no shortage of space and large homes, I spent most of my life in Toronto, where square footage comes at a premium price tag. Designing a home in the city is often not just for the esthetics but each square foot needs to be accounted for to maximize functionality.

An effective way to create a multi-purpose room is to combine a frequently used room with an infrequently used room. A perfect example of this is combining a guest bedroom with an office space. Since guest bedrooms are typically only occupied when you have overnight guests, it makes sense to convert it into an office space for daily use if space is limited.

In this 1700 square foot home, 2 office spaces were needed.  Immediately the guest bedroom was turned into an office for dad as he needed a bit more privacy. I then converted the dining room into a beautiful office space for mom who was fine with having her work space in the common area. The dining room only gets used when they have guests over so it was perfect to function an office space as well.

For this room, we got this large beautiful wood dining table with live edge, that will be used daily as a desk, where she has ample space to lay out her work, computer and whatever else she needed. For storage, we used 3 metal bookcases and placed them behind the dining table. These bookcases were the key to the design. Traditional wooden bookcases would have visually occupied more space in this room but these metal shelves keeps it looking open and spacious. Boxes with filing folders were used to store important documents and baskets for extra storage.

LRG_DSC05458

The pendant light offers great lighting for work but also creates ambience for conversations over dinner and a glass of wine.

LRG_DSC05457

Also, the paint used in this room is actually chalkboard paint so you can actually jot down notes and brainstorm directly on the wall when you’re working and it can be easily washed off when you are done.

LRG_DSC05466

When this family expects to have guests, they bring out the dining chairs from their breakfast table, add a floral centerpiece, set the table and voila, a dining room it becomes.  By utilizing the chairs from their breakfast table, they don’t have extra chairs laying around where storage and space is already limited.

LRG_DSC05416

As you can see, this room now becomes a beautiful dining room for entertaining guests and having great conversations.  You can quickly swap some of the items in the bookshelves to make it more entertaining friendly, such as candles, flowers, bottles of wine and coffee table books.

LRG_DSC05414

LRG_DSC05426

Once dinner is done, you clear the table and once again it becomes a fabulous workspace.

I hope this has given you some tips and ideas on how to create your own multi-purpose room.

XO,

Kim

 

Superhero Boys Room

Decorating my boys room was a lot tougher than I had thought.  I wanted their room to be stylish but also reflect their interests. I also felt it was important for my 5 year old to be part of the process. However, if it had left it up to him, I think there would be superheroes flying at you as you enter the room.

I gave the boys the option of choosing a superhero theme bedding or having a superhero wall decal above their beds. As you can see, they opted for the wall decal.  They each got to choose their favorite character from a preselected list based on price point. My oldest chose Spiderman and my donut chose the Hulk. These are perfect because you can take them off easily if you need to relocate them or want to switch them out for something else.  We also had this superhero banner from awhile ago when Lucas was in his own room. Of course he insisted on bringing it over to his new shared room with his brother.

I chose this navy blue upholstered platform bed from Amazon for their room because it complements the decor. More importantly, it is not something that they will outgrow quickly.  The bed is affordable, stylish and easy to put together.

For bedding, I took the boys to Ikea since you could literally make a whole day out of Ikea, from browsing through their entire show room, stopping at the kids section, playing with all the toys, eating and then going downstairs and actually finding your items plus way more than you came for. Lucas initially chose this  flower bedding, which is so pretty and fun.  I was blown away by his great taste. I loved all the flowers and color on it and was excited about figuring out how I was going to tie the flowers into the Spiderman and Hulk theme.   Then his younger brother choose this blue stripe one. I am not sure what happened but last minute, Lucas threw back the flower bedding and just went with this simple navy blue set. I was a little disappointed but it was his choice. boys room view 1

It took me awhile but I eventually found this cute little night table for their bedside. It is also available here.  It is round so no sharp edges which is great for kids (childproof). More importantly it has a little basket that could store all their stuff animals. My boys must have at least 10-20 stuff animals in their room at any given time and they usually ALWAYS end up on the floor. So having the basket is amazing because I could easily throw them all in there.  Each night they would pick one from the basket to bring to bed with them.

fullsizeoutput_91

One of my favorite items in their room is the paper mâché LED letters that I placed on top of their bed. It acts both a decorative piece and night light for their room. Overall the boys room came together pretty nicely and we are pretty happy with it. It is cute and stylish for mommy, and you definitely cannot miss the superhero figures on the wall protecting my boys at night.

fullsizeoutput_8e

XO,

Kim

Thanksgiving Tablescape

Thanksgiving 2017

This past Thanksgiving was the first Thanksgiving we spent in Florida since our relocation from Toronto. Every year Thanksgiving falls around my birthday weekend and for as long as I could remember, we have always travelled to celebrate my birthday. However this past year, we decided to travel the day after Thanksgiving and spent it with our friends in Tampa (Friendsgiving).

To celebrate our first American Thanksgiving, I decorated my entire table using mainly Chip and Joanna Gaine’s Hearth and Hand collection from Target, everything from candle holder to napkins, to napkins rings, flatware and lanterns.

Processed with VSCO with hb2 preset

Processed with VSCO with hb2 preset

Processed with VSCO with hb2 preset

Processed with VSCO with hb2 preset

Details on items used:

Hearth and Hand Collection

Glass and Metal Taper Candle Holder – Brass

Artificial Cypress/Pine/Sage Stem Bundle 

Black Taper Candle

Cedar Magnolia Candle – I am obsessed with the scent of this candle

Small Black House Lantern

X Pattern Napkins

Gather Napkin Ring

Black Flatware

Other

Gold Table Runner

Gold Square Charger Plate

Crystal Wine Glass – I grabbed these from Home Goods last year but these wine glasses are pretty similar.

Square dinner set

XO,

Kim