Monday, October 20, 2014

Baker's Twine Pumpkins

Pumpkin decorating ideas - wrap the stem in baker's twine for a modern look! http://designimprovised.com

There are so many cool pumpkin decorating ideas out there, but most overlook what I think is often the cutest part - the stem! I love a pumpkin with long twisty stem. This idea makes the stem the star by wrapping it in black and white baker's twine.

Pumpkin decorating ideas - wrap the stem in baker's twine for a modern look! http://designimprovised.com

The twine is also a great way to highlight some of the ridges in the pumpkin.

Pumpkin decorating ideas - wrap the stem in baker's twine for a modern look! http://designimprovised.com

This is the type of project you can do on Halloween morning if you haven't gotten around to decorating any pumpkins and you want to do something quick. Just grab your glue gun and you'll have a cool pumpkin in minutes!

Supplies for Twine Pumpkins


  • Pumpkin with long stem
  • Baker's twine
  • Glue gun
  • Scissors


Pumpkin decorating ideas - wrap the stem in baker's twine for a modern look! http://designimprovised.com

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Join Me at a Goodwill Halloween Crafting Event This Thursday!

Calling all San Antonians! I'm hosting a Halloween Make and Take Event at the Goodwill on Thursday night and I would love for you to join:


The Goodwill is an amazing source for inexpensive glass vases and jars. For our Make and Take craft we'll be transforming them into these fun glowing lanterns for Halloween! 


There will be stories and a scarecrow craft for the kids, so bring them along! The event is free and starts at 6pm - I hope to see you there.

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Thrift Store DIY: Spider Wall Art

Transform mismatched plates from the thrift store into creepy crawly Halloween wall decor in minutes! http://designimprovised.com

This month's Goodwill project is all about mismatched plates - those lonely one-off dishes being overlooked at your local thrift store! Give these poor guys a new lease on life by transforming them into wall art this Halloween! Adding some spider decals transforms them into a perfectly cohesive and spooky grouping.

Transform mismatched plates from the thrift store into creepy crawly Halloween wall decor in minutes! http://designimprovised.com

I found these plates at the Goodwill for $1-$2 each. Here's a tip - you can find them for even cheaper if you locate the ones that have the colored price tag that happens to be 50% off that day. The color changes regularly, so ask a store clerk. I purchased a hodgepodge of white dishes in an effort to get a mix of shapes and borders that would work well together as a group. I laid them out on the floor at the Goodwill to find a mix of five I liked (odd numbers work best in a grouping like this)!

Transform mismatched plates from the thrift store into creepy crawly Halloween wall decor in minutes! http://designimprovised.com

Transforming these castoff plates into creepy cool wall art is as simple as peel and stick:

Supplies for Spider Plates


  • Thrifted plates (I used a mix of regular and melamine dishes)
  • Window / mirror decals (I used these Martha Stewart spiders, but you could use any decals you want!)
  • Command strips or plate hangers

Transform mismatched plates from the thrift store into creepy crawly Halloween wall decor in minutes! http://designimprovised.com

Monday, October 6, 2014

Guest Bedroom Reveal with hayneedle.com

Our new guest room is open and accepting guests - who wants to come visit?!

How to create a stylish and inviting guest bedroom http://designimprovised.com

We love having family and friends stay with us in San Antonio, and it has been so nice to have the space to accommodate them (no more air mattresses!). Since Stella and Hazel share a bedroom, it has freed up two bedrooms for guests which has been awesome when multiple family members are visiting at once.

For the past year, this second guest room was pretty bare-boned with just a mattress. With the holidays coming up, I partnered with hayneedle.com to give it a guest-friendly makeover. Incorporating a few of their gorgeous pieces such as this plush green headboard completely transformed the room.

How to create a stylish and inviting guest bedroom http://designimprovised.com

Ever in doubt with what to put on the wall - especially over a bed or dresser? Add a sunburst style mirror - I promise you can't go wrong. I love the organic feel this metal sunflower mirror brings to the room.

We also added a dresser to provide additional storage. I love using this media chest as a dresser because the open shelves are perfect for holding a couple special treats for guests like some reading material and a snack basket. The nice deep drawers offer plenty of storage - I left the top two empty to give guests a place to store their things.

How to create a stylish and inviting guest bedroom http://designimprovised.com

A few additions like a good reading lamp, an alarm clock, and a water carafe are simple changes that made all the difference in the room. Our guests are already fighting over who gets to stay in it next!

How to create a stylish and inviting guest bedroom http://designimprovised.com

Planning on hosting guests over the holidays? Head over to the hayneedle.com blog for my tips on how to prepare a special space for them! 





This post is sponsored by hayneedle.com. All content and opinions are my own. Photos by Candice Stringham.

Friday, October 3, 2014

Friday Finds: Halloween Decor

Yesterday I shared my Halloween mantel featuring spooky Martha Stewart decor (don't forget to enter the giveaway to win your own box of goodies from Martha!). I love checking out Halloween decor at my favorite stores and adding a couple little things to my collection each year. Here are a few of the pieces I'm currently loving:


Thursday, October 2, 2014

Martha Stewart Halloween Mantel and Giveaway!

A simple Halloween mantel featuring Martha Stewart decor. #12MonthsofMartha http://designimprovised.com

Did you know Halloween is Martha Stewart's favorite holiday? That's probably why her Halloween decor is always some of the coolest at the store. I knew there would be some good stuff in my October 12 Months of Martha box, and it did not disappoint! I decided decorate my mantel in honor of Martha - incorporating the spooky bats, skulls, and gothic labels that came in my box.

You can win a box of Halloween goodies from Martha Stewart - enter below! 

A simple Halloween mantel featuring Martha Stewart decor. #12MonthsofMartha http://designimprovised.com

I tend to lean toward cutesy vs. scary decor when it comes to Halloween decorations, but these awesome 3D skull silhouettes inspired me to go a little spookier this year. I framed the paper skulls in some frames I already had, removing the glass and sticking them to a piece of white foam core (card stock would also work). A little spider web stretched across the frame adds a finishing touch.

A simple Halloween mantel featuring Martha Stewart decor. #12MonthsofMartha http://designimprovised.com

I borrowed these vintage laboratory bottles from Ross's man cave and gave them a Halloween twist with the Martha Stewart labels. Another 5 minute makeover was adding the bat window clings to the big mirror. I love this simple idea that anyone can do!

A simple Halloween mantel featuring Martha Stewart decor. #12MonthsofMartha http://designimprovised.com

While the labels are peel and stick, I left their backing on and instead used removable double sided tape so they could be easily be removed after Halloween (and avoid upsetting the hubby!).

A simple Halloween mantel featuring Martha Stewart decor. #12MonthsofMartha http://designimprovised.com

I replaced the usual greenery in the black urns I keep on the mantel with a "blue pumpkin" and some faux spider web.

A simple Halloween mantel featuring Martha Stewart decor. #12MonthsofMartha http://designimprovised.com

To finish off the display I mixed in a bunch of little pumpkins and draped my creepy crawly spider garland across the front.

A simple Halloween mantel featuring Martha Stewart decor. #12MonthsofMartha http://designimprovised.com

Thank you Martha for inspiring me to come up with a fun mantel this Halloween!

A simple Halloween mantel featuring Martha Stewart decor. #12MonthsofMartha http://designimprovised.com

Now it's your chance to get some Halloween goodies! Enter to win using the Rafflecopter widget below and you could be the lucky recipient of the skulls, bats, and labels I used in my mantel as well as these pumpkin sleeves and pennant pad. So much fun!

Martha Stewart Halloween Giveaway! http://designimprovised.com

Martha Stewart Halloween Giveaway


a Rafflecopter giveaway

This is post is sponsored by Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia as part of the #12MonthsofMartha program. All content and opinions are my own.


Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Halloween Spider Garland

Pipe cleaners were meant to be spiders! Use them to whip of this simple Halloween spider garland in minutes. http://designimprovised.com

Sometimes I laugh when I think about my favorite crafting materials… pipe cleaners, pom-poms, yarn… I'm still crafting with the same tools I loved as a kid! Having these simple supplies in my craft cabinet just makes me happy (and my girls happy too!). I love the challenge of using them in new, more sophisticated ways. I hope this spider garland is an example of that. I think it's just the right combination of creepy, crawly, and fun!

Pipe cleaners were meant to be spiders! Use them to whip of this simple Halloween spider garland in minutes. http://designimprovised.com

I think pipe cleaners were always meant to be spiders. They bend perfectly into little legs - and you can bend them in all different configurations so no two spiders look alike. 

Pipe cleaners were meant to be spiders! Use them to whip of this simple Halloween spider garland in minutes. http://designimprovised.com

Supplies for Spider Garland


  • Black pipe cleaners (you'll need 4 per spider)
  • Baker's twine or string (I used black and white baker's twine for a Halloween touch)
  • Darning needle

Pipe cleaners were meant to be spiders! Use them to whip of this simple Halloween spider garland in minutes. http://designimprovised.com

Friday, September 26, 2014

Halloween Spider Balloons

Creepy crawly Halloween spider balloons! || Design Improvised blog

I hope you guys have gotten a kick out of Halloween Balloon Week! As you can tell, I had more than a little fun coming up with these ideas. Thanks so much for humoring me by following along! I'm capping off the week with some creepy crawly spiders.

Creepy crawly Halloween spider balloons! || Design Improvised blog

These spiders would look cute in a bunch, or mixed in with other balloons. Why not throw in an orange and black pom-pom balloon while you're at it. ;)

DIY Halloween balloons || Design Improvised blog

Supplies for Spider Balloons


  • Black 12" helium grade balloons
  • Black pipe cleaners
  • Scotch tape
  • Scissors
  • Curling ribbon

Halloween Spider Balloons

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