My Wonderful Walls Blog
How To Pick the Right Paint Color 0
It’s a myth that winter is a bad time to paint your interiors. As long as your room has some ventilation, you will be able to paint. You can also choose a water based latex paint with low VOCs (volatile organic compounds) to reduce the lingering paint smell. So, if you’re thinking about changing it up a bit with a new paint color, we’ve got some tips on choosing the right one.
Not only should you consider the color you paint your walls, ceilings and trim but make sure you are using the right type paint for the job. You’ll want to stick with latex paint for your walls and ceilings and can use oil based paints for your trim and molding if they are made from real wood. Then you’ll need to pick from high gloss, semi or flat sheen. High gloss paints are great for rooms with heavy traffic or where kids will be hanging out, because you can easily wipe them with a damp sponge. However, rooms painted with a high gloss finish, tend to show off imperfections more easily as well so keep that in mind. If you choose a semi-gloss finish, you can still clean the walls pretty easily but you’ll lose some of the shine. Choose flat or matte paints to camouflage any problem areas in the wall but be aware, they will not be as easy to clean. So, in a high traffic area with lots of imperfection in the wall, you can choose an eggshell sheen which does the same job as a flat paint but is also a little easier to clean.
Now it’s time for the fun part, picking colors! Unless you are selling your home, your choice can be a very personal one. If you are putting your house on the market soon, you’ll want to think about painting or re-painting the walls white or very light neutrals to allow the buyers to imagine their own personality in the home. But if you just want to add some life to a room or your bedroom walls are looking a little dingy, the sky is the limit!
If you read our newsletter this week, you saw Pantone came out with its 2017 Color of the Year, Greenery. Following trends, and checking out what the “hot” colors are this season is one way to pick your paint colors. However, what is trendy right now, might not be in line with your personality and the look and feel of your home. If you’re looking to create a calm and peaceful room, choose soft, cool and neutral hues. But if you want to achieve a room where everyone will feel welcomed and sociable? Try a palette of warm, contrasting, bright colors to achieve that atmosphere.
Not sure what kind of mood you want to create? Another source of inspiration can be the accents and artwork you’ve already chosen for your home. The colors that show up in many of them are obviously colors you are fond of, so why not paint a room in that color? Don’t want to go too bold in painting an entire room? Create an accent wall with a new color using one of our self-adhesive pattern stencils or stripe wall decals!
You can use the other rooms in your house to help you choose wisely as well. Make sure as you pass from room to room the colors will flow together nicely and make sense. If you think of your home (especially with an open floor plan) as a giant piece of art, you’ll be able to stand in one room, look into another and imagine how the color change might look in relation to the room you are in.
Lastly, rely on the color wheel! Choose colors that are opposite each other, like red and green, and they will play off each other in a bold way. But sticking within one shade of color (like all blues) will create a subtler look. If you take a color wheel and draw a line from the yellow-green mark down to the red-violet mark, all the colors on the left are warm and on the right, are your cool colors. Choosing colors from the cool side, will help rooms appear larger and airy. Warm colors will help a room appear more vibrant. However, you can easily mix it up by painting the walls in a paint color from one color family and adding complements from the other side of the wheel.
Once you start to get an idea of the colors you would like to use, try them out! Beyond the paint cards at your local paint store, get a small sample of the color (most stores offer these now) and either paint a spot on the wall with the best lighting in the room or paint a piece of foam board and hang that up to give you a feel for the color. Try holding it next to the furniture in the room as well before you commit. Two colors pulling at your heartstrings? Try them both out for a few days and see which one you really like best. Then you can pick a trim color as well.
Now it’s time to prep and paint! We hope these tips will help you when you choose a new paint color for your home. You can also check out our blog article on Painting 101 – How to Get Professional Results by Yourself. Remember, use your imagination when coming up with a new color scheme for your painted walls unless you’re putting your home on the market. And most importantly, have fun!
Five Simple DIY Decor Ideas for After the Holidays 0
Now that the winter holidays are over, it doesn’t mean you can’t deck the halls (and the mantle and the walls….). If you’ve taken down the tree and the lights and are left feeling a little uninspired, here are five simple DIY décor ideas for your home after the holidays.
1. Use Your Lights
When the tree is down and you take the lights off the front bushes, you can use your string lights to make a fun garland for your mantle or headboard by following the easy DIY instructions from Amanda at Wit and Whistle or cupcake flower lights from Steph at Oh Happy Day.
2. DIY Pelmet Box
You can make over any window in minutes with this DIY Pelmet Box idea from Little Green Notebook. This is especially good if you can’t or don’t want to hang blind or long panels. What an easy change you can make today with just some fabric, foam core board, batting, Fabri-tac and hardware.
3. DIY Fabric Headboard
Make a Retro Fabric DIY Headboard with these step by step instructions from Briana at Kindle Your Creativity. You can go as wild or as tame as you want with your fabric choice.
4. Wine Cork Trivet
Did you and your guests indulge in some adult beverages? Hey, we’re not judging! If you have a lot of wine bottles and corks in your recycling bin, check out this idea for a Wine Cork Trivet from Ehow.com.
5. Winter Door Decor
Using some of her existing Christmas decorations, Dinah at DIY Inspired created this hanging basket with a burlap ribbon. You could create something similar with any flowers or floral picks, garland and ribbon you have left over.
January can be cold and grey but if you try out some of these DIY winter décor ideas you are sure to feel a little more festive. If you aren’t into making your own décor, try one of our fabric wall decals for an instant touch of wonderful color to any room in the house or stencil yourself an accent wall with our self-adhesive stencils!
Start 2017 Out Right with Our Top Ten Decluttering Ideas 1
Many of us make New Year’s Resolutions to “get organized” or declutter our homes each year. But why is it so hard to follow through? We definitely develop emotional attachments to our stuff and without some forethought, decluttering can quickly turn into a daunting project. It’s also easy to make excuses for why we didn’t get it done and let ourselves off the hook. So, start off on the right step in 2017 with our Top Ten Decluttering Ideas for your home and workspace. This is a great time to just say yes to less and get rid of the mess. In no particular order, here are some great decluttering tips:
1. Buddy Up!
Lianna George from By George Organizing says in her article, 4 Reasons Why Your Decluttering Isn’t Working, “When you declutter by yourself there is no accountability, no one to question your decisions (or lack of them). If you want to see real results that lead to a change in your clutter, you have to be willing to have someone work alongside you.” Makes a lot of sense. So, grab your spouse, your sister, your best friend, whomever you choose and get to work!
2. Rome was Not Built in a Day!
Make yourself daily goals. Start with smaller spaces and move on from there. If you get done with one area and feel motivated, tackle another early. But make your goals S.M.A.R.T. – specific, manageable, achievable, realistic and time-based. There is no sense in making a goal to clean out an entire garage alone on a Sunday afternoon while taking care of your infant and toddler too, so don’t set yourself up for failure. There are lots of month long “decluttering challenges” you can take part in to help you keep your goals S.M.A.R.T., just google it or look on Pinterest.
3. Be Real with Yourself!
One thing I am guilty of, is keeping clothes that are in great shape but don’t fit or things my kids got as gifts that we couldn’t return and pile them up thinking I’ll consign them or sell them on eBay for some extra cash. Well I have a lot of piles and no extra cash. So, if it’s not complete junk, donate it. Otherwise, trash it.
4. You Better Work!
Start with your workspace. Your desk can probably due with a little purge. According to LifeHack.org you should make cleaning off your desktop a #1 priority. ”Keep flat surfaces clear, and have an inbox for all incoming papers. When the papers come in, sort them each day – toss, delegate, do immediately, or file simply file all documents, but whatever you do, DO NOT KEEP THEM ON TOP OF YOUR DESK. All you want on the surface of your desk is your phone, computer, inbox, and maybe a special photo in addition to the documents you are working with at the moment.” - LifeHack.org
5. Time for Virtual Reality (Checks)!
If you’ve been downloading pictures to share on social media over the holidays or have a lot of old files and emails clogging up your computer, it’s time to clean up. Use file storage solutions such as Dropbox to move pictures and files you need or really want to keep. Or use the iCloud if you’re a MAC user to store pics and music without slowing down your system. Windows users, check out OneDrive for a great way to keep your files organized without clogging up your desktop or your memory.
6. Take 5!
Leo from Zen Habits offers you 18 different 5 minute decluttering challenges to jumpstart the rebirth of your newly organized home. Just pick one, right now (seriously, right now). I like the idea to schedule a decluttering weekend and getting family on board so that it’s on your calendar and it’s easy to get everyone on board with enough notice. You probably have a lot of boxes you can use to sort your clutter from all those holiday gifts you ordered right now too!
7. Make No Assumptions!
Just because you assume your kids don’t play with xyz toy, don’t just throw it out. Keep them involved in the decluttering of their own areas but also be realistic and talk about it ahead of time. You know younger kids are going to have some emotional attachments and older kids are going to want to feel in control. You can make it a game like the STOP clutter game suggested on HGTV with younger kids. Just make sure you are ready to not back down. If you have older kids or teenagers, let them be involved but be clear that the clutter is going. They can help decide what they really need and want or they can just deal with your decisions. One way to really drive home the point that there’s just too much “stuff” is to dump it all out in one big pile for each kid or each room. It’s pretty mind blowing.
8. Dare to Declutter the Bathroom!
The bathroom can be an area that get easily overwhelming. If you have cabinets and drawers of stuff, empty them out. You probably don’t need three half empty bottles of shampoo and that great smelling bath scrub you never used from 2011 can probably go now. Work on organizing and simplifying your storage spaces and then get that vanity top cleaned off! Use small bins or drawer separators to keep things tidy.
9. Play Toss, Keep or Store!
If your kitchen cabinets or pantry have become a scary place you just don’t want to look at, it’s time! Check out this pantry decluttering checklist from Kristen at Chatelaine
10. Live with Less!
Overall, you can declutter every month or even every day, but if you just keep buying more “stuff” you’ll never be done. With everything from tools to toys to clothes and home goods, go for quality over quantity.
Here's the Goins' playroom in 2011 after a thorough decluttering by Stephanie. Now they're painting over that jungle mural for the boys so stay tuned to see how it looks.
Just remember as you begin your decluttering adventure, it’s not about perfection. It’s about making your home a place of peace and comfort and having rooms that work for you, not against you. If you’re making a New Year’s resolution to declutter your life and home, let us know your own tips below.
Top 5 DIY Holiday Decor Ideas 0
If you are spending the holidays entertaining this year, maybe you want to add a few new décor items to your home? If you don’t want to spend a lot of money, there are plenty of great DIY ideas out there that you can do quickly and affordably. You can even make them as gifts in some cases! Here are 5 of our favorites from around the web.
Don't you think the ones Katie at Little House of Four made are better than the ones she pictured from Target’s catalog last year? We sure do! These are easy enough older kids could help out too!
Melted crayon projects are one of my favorites and I am re-doing my tree color scheme this year so these would be an inexpensive way to add new colored ornaments to the tree. I’m going to add glitter to mine.
If you celebrate Hanukkah, check out these easy and elegant hurricane candle holders for the table or mantle. Martha Stewart has a whole collection of Hanukah Crafts and DIY Décor on her site if you need more ideas.
Here’s a fun video tutorial from Tammi Craft showing you how to make some reindeer (dare we say Rudolph?) inspired ornaments for your tree. These look like something the kids might like to do too! If you are already pretty crafty, you probably have most of the materials in your home already.
And a truly inspired find this year, these DIY Iced Branches from Dana at Make Them Wonder. This is one DIY you want to do now before all the branches are covered in snow! These beautiful branches can be used indoor or out, with lights, on the mantel, in a vase, on your table…the possibilities are endless. Enjoy!
If you’re thinking, "listen I just want to buy some décor that’s not going to break my budget, I don’t have time for crafts", check out our Snowflake Variety Wall Decal Set and Winter Wonderland Decals. Instant ooh and ahh factor included! And on December 3rd only, you can take advantage of our doorbuster deal to get the snowflakes at 40% off. How’s that for magical?
5 Tips to Make Yoga a Family Affair 11
Getting a little time for ourselves as parents can be tricky. And at any age,stress can keep us from eating right, sleeping right and let’s face it acting right. We feel it and so do our children, so instead of trying to carve out a few precious minutes each day to de-stress alone, why not make it a family affair?
By introducing yoga into your family, you and your children can take part in an ancient tradition that seeks to connect mind, body and spirit. Whether they are 3 or 13, they can work with you on building their core muscles, breathing techniques, empowerment, letting go of stress, mindfulness… there is just so much yoga offers!
But where do you begin? We scoped out some great ideas for getting started! Here are a few of our favorites.
Try Partner Yoga
If you’ve been thinking about trying some yoga out with your kids to help you both relax and reconnect, try out these poses from Kids Yoga Stories. Not only might you find bedtime to be less stressful, you might discover you all really like yoga.
For Younger Kids, Let Them Watch You at First
According to an article on Rhythms of Play, kids 3 and under benefit by just watching you practice at first. While you don’t need to make them sit still and watch you, keeping the electronics off during this special time is key.
Get Kids a Yoga Mat that Fits Them
One size does not fit all when it comes to yoga mats. Per this article on Yoga Journal, kids feel safer when they have a yoga mat that fits them and has boundaries. Not up for buying a kid’s yoga mat right now? Make your own with this tutorial from Sewing Rabbit or this one from The Sassy Life.
Make the Yoga Age Appropriate and Fun!
Your three-year-old and your nine-year-old have different needs and wants when it comes to yoga. Make sure you are making the yoga practice fit each child. And liven it up with music, props and stories. YogiApproved.com has a great article entitled 5 Tips for Doing Yoga with Kids with ideas on how to make yoga fun for every age group.
Consider Taking Your Family to a Yoga Festival
Once you’ve introduced yoga into the home, check out a festival celebrating all the great joys of yoga. Not only might you have a fun family day and further grow your love of yoga, you might meet some like-minded families in the community!
Remember, yoga is more than just physical poses. The word yoga comes from the word yuj meaning “to unite or integrate”. The practice of yoga seeks to bring the mind and body together with the breath by integrating breathing techniques, meditation and yoga postures. So, any way that you can encourage this marriage of mind, body and spirit, will benefit you and your children. Whether it’s taking a few minutes each day to practice breathing exercises or coloring mandalas with your kids, you can make huge strides in creating harmony in your family and helping your children to develop techniques that will help them battle stress and promote health as they get older.
Thanks to Natasha for the use of the top two pics with her and her adorable children. You can follow her on Instagram as @natashaswinter for amazing videos and photos of her daily yoga practice. And thank you to Amy and Aimee for being part of our great photo shoot with our new decals. You can follow them on Instagram as @amyyogamomof3 and @aimeemasch for lots of yoga inspiration.
The Daily Give ~ Enter Daily To Win Now Through November 30th 291
Do you like home décor? Do you like free stuff? Well, you’re going to love the next 24 days! Starting on Monday, November 7th, My Wonderful Walls will be giving away a different prize every single day up until Wednesday, November 30th. All you need to do is be paying attention when we announce the giveaway is open for the day. Then go enter on The Daily Give page by using the Rafflecopter widget. You will need to enter each day's giveaway separately! The daily giveaways will end every day at noon EST and winners will be announced later in the day on our social media pages and by email where possible. Winners will have 48 hours to claim their prize or a new winner will be selected.
So, here’s a recap of The Daily Give:
Who can enter?
All legal residents of the continental U.S., Alaska and Hawaii, 18 and over unless prohibited by law. See rules and guidelines on the RC widget for more info.
Every day starting 11/7 and ending 11/30 a new giveaway will start and end that same day at 12 midnight PST. Watch the My Wonderful Walls Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Google+ pages and our The Daily Give page to know the new giveaway has started.
Where/How Do I Enter?
Entry to each giveaway is via the Rafflecopter widget on The Daily Give page or on the My Wonderful Walls Facebook Giveaway tab. Either is the same. You can only enter once.
What can I win?
Each day, a different prize will be up for grabs including some of our most popular wall decals and wall sticker kits. Check out the slide show on The Daily Give page to see what prize will be given away each day.
Because we like you. No, really we really like you. And it’s the holiday season. So, we want to help you kick it off in style with some free home décor you can keep or use as a gift!
Kick off your holiday season with some fun new wall décor or a throw pillow or blanket from #MyWonderfulWalls and tell everyone you know about The Daily Give. Good luck!