Themed Gatherings for Fall

October 21, 2015

Friends often enjoy casual, spur-of-the-moment get togethers, yet there is also something spectacular about picking a theme and planning a party. Fall is a season of gatherings, so as the weather turns cool and we settle in, why not invite a few of your favorite ladies over to reconnect for a fun spin on a ladies night in? You’ll love our ideas for themed gatherings!

Favorite Things Party

Instruct each guest to choose her favorite thing that costs less than $5.00 and bring five of that item to the party. For example, one of your friends may bring five tubes of her favorite lip balm and another may opt for five of her favorite pen or favorite scented candle. As each guest arrives, she writes her name on five slips of paper.  Collect the slips in a bowl, and when everyone has had a chance to visit, the fun begins!  Pick one friend to start.  She’ll explain what her favorite thing is and why she loves it so much.  Then she picks five names from the bowl, and hands out her treasured items.  Continue until everyone has shared, and by the end of the night, everyone will have five fun new products to take home.

Tea Swap

This spin on the traditional tea party is fun and can be as formal or as casual as you like. Have each lady bring a box of her favorite individually wrapped tea bags, so  she can give one tea bag to each guest. Have plenty of hot water and cups on hand so ladies can try teas while they gather and visit. Be sure to have each guest share which tea bag she brought as she hands them out. For added fun you could also include a teacup exchange.

Pinterest Party

How many of us have pinned way more things than we could ever try? Guilty? This party is the perfect excuse to finally test out some of those pins. Either pick a craft to all try together, or have each lady bring supplies for one project she has pinned. Best case scenario: you have great holiday gifts made up. Worst case: you walk away with a great “Pinterest fail” story. For snacks, have each guest make and bring a recipe they have pinned.

Card Addressing Party

Get a jump start on the holidays, and make a tedious task more enjoyable. Put on some festive music, set up a hot chocolate bar, and have some friends over to address their own envelopes. It may feel like you are rushing things, but when the holiday chaos sets in, you will be glad you have all your holiday cards addressed ahead of time.

Caramel Apple Bar

Have a memorable time by setting up a DIY caramel apple bar. Assign apples, sticks, caramel (and chocolate) for melting and dipping, as well as various toppings to each guest. Make sure you have lots of wax paper and string so guests can wrap up their creations to take home and enjoy later.

Caramel Apple

Pumpkin Party

Making a mess is always more fun with friends around. Have everyone bring a pumpkin, and decorate them together. Go old school and carve them, or try something new and paint, tape, or glitter your gourds. Vote on best, scariest, worst (ha!) and funniest, and then gather the leftover seeds and toast them while everyone is there.

Cook Off

Nothing says fall like a great big bowl of soup. Invite friends over, and have each family bring a pot of their favorite soup and plenty of copies of the recipe. Keep things simple (and less likely to spill) by serving the soup in styrofoam cups. Have plenty of napkins on hand and add a little friendly competition by giving a prize to the favorite soup of the night.

Back to School

Have you and your friends all been talking about learning a certain skill? Maybe it’s knitting, bread baking, or making your own cleaning supplies. Ask around and find someone you know who is willing to come over and demonstrate. Make sure you get a supply list from your instructor and distribute it beforehand so your guests can come prepared.

~ Joy

*photo by Liz Cook Photography*

 

A Locally Sourced Nursery

July 19, 2015

Personalizing your space is so much fun, especially when you are welcoming a new little one into the home! For one couple, Adam and Haley Pavao, incorporating vintage and locally made items was essential. As the owner of Pastiche at Main, Haley enjoys supporting creatives through her store and other venues (such as Vintage Lynchburg and Peddler Antiques). “It is much more personal when you can find or customize items for your home. Then to actually meet the maker behind the merchandise… what a joy! I will always do my best to give back to the creative hands and to keep our money in the community,” offered Haley.

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When it came to decorating a nursery, Haley picked a “Native American meets local” theme for Addison’s nursery, which offers a sense of adventure for the baby boy. Haley stated, “I have always dreamed of decorating a nursery and had slowly begun gathering a few gender neutral items over the last couple of years. It was quite simple to go with natural decor that would grow up with Addison fairly easily.”

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The Pavaos live in a 1950s home which is short on storage. Creatively incorporating cubbies and ledges, along with utilizing the wall space, aided in finding a place for books and collectibles. Adding a little extra seating in the form of an old Sears cart, which will eventually function as a toddler bed, also makes Addison’s room a great place to spend time when his cousins visit.

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As new parents, we asked both Adam and Haley to offer insight based on their experience. 

What was the most fun thing about the pregnancy?

A – I loved it when the baby would move around. It was the craziest thing to see our baby move, especially in the later months when he would respond to our voices.
H – I enjoyed waking every day to a growing, moving baby that was healthy… just truly grasping what a miracle life is.

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What is the one thing that has surprised you about being a parent so far? 

A – Being a parent changed me. I have become the biggest baby since Addison’s birth, and I have never experienced anything like it. I never knew I could experience such intense gratitude.
H – How quickly each stage flies by. There is a constant change occurring! I’m just trying to soak up each day so I don’t miss anything.

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What is your favorite thing about being a parent? 

A – There is nothing like his laugh. I love coming home, making eye contact and hearing him squeal with joy. Absolutely my favorite part of being a parent is being “dada” and already starting that father/son relationship.

H – I love how instantly Addison and I shared a mother/son bond that no one else can have. It truly is unique and melts my heart every time I see him just staring up at me or grabbing my face.

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Adam’s Advice for New DadsI didn’t know what I was doing when Addison was born. The truth is, I still don’t. I frequently call Haley a wizard because she can magically walk in the room, pick up Addison, and he settles down. There is just something about mom that makes everything okay. Encourage her. Support her. Love her beyond her expectations.  She deserves it, and so does your baby.

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Haley’s Advice for New MomsGrace! Every day give yourself grace. Managing another little life – whether working or at home – is a life altering responsibility. Don’t be so hard on yourself. That baby was given to you, so take your time, learn what your baby wants, and roll with it! It is such a privilege to raise a child; I am forever changed by this journey of loving Addison.

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Local Shopping Guide:

·   Burp Cloths & Bibs – Bird & Elephant

·   Chalk Art – Regeneration

·   Custom Baby Bag – Elle & Anne

·   Dresser & Arrow Stencils – Pastiche Interiors

·   Globe – Bluebird Urban Farmhouse

·   Green Crochet Bunting – Anchored Restoration

·   Hand Lettered Framed Name – Cultivate Design

·   Leather Moccasins – Alice & Lucy’s Shop

·   Love You to the Moon Graphic – Honeysuckle

·   Map – (former) Estate Specialists

·   Map Frame & Canvases – Adam Mullins Photography

·   Vintage Finds – Yard Sales & Thrift Stores

·   Wall Color – James T. Davis

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DIY – Patriotic Wreath

May 21, 2015

We adore Paula of Virginia Sweet Pea. Her blog is filled with ideas and DIY projects. She is one of our clutch regular writers, and Paula always has fun DIYs. 

Summer is the perfect time to celebrate with patriotic decor, especially with upcoming holidays such as Memorial Day, the 4th of July and Labor Day. Whether you are honoring a special day or recognizing a family member’s military service, craft a red, white and blue patriotic wreath for your door, mantel or office.

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Supplies

  • 16” wire wreath form
  • ½ yard each of red, white, and blue fleece
  • Rotary cutter, quilter’s ruler and cutting mat  (Or a ruler and scissors)

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Method

  1. Cut each color of fleece into 1” x 6” strips.
  2. The wire wreath is divided into eight segments. Three segments will be blue with white “stars.” Three segments will be red and two will be white. Starting with red, tie strips of fleece to the form, one at a time.
  3. Fill in one section of the wreath completely with red strips and the next completely with white strips. Continue alternating colors until three red and two white sections are filled.
  4. The remaining three wreath segments will be blue with white strips added to form “stars”. Start by adding four rows of blue to one section. On the fifth row, alternate blue with white strips, and then add two more rows of blue strips. On the next row, alternate white with blue strips. Add two more rows of blue strips. After that, add a row alternating blue with white strips, then add two rows of blue strips, and then add a row alternating white with blue strips. Continue with pattern until the three sections are nearly filled. End the third section with four blue strip rows.
  5. Hang your wreath and enjoy!

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Love this idea? Here are a few more ideas for this type of wreath.

  1. Felt or fabric could also be used to construct a wreath.
  2. Make a wreath in colors that match your home’s decor.
  3. Construct a “school pride” wreath using your favorite team’s colors.

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7 Spring Ideas

April 3, 2015

Ahhhh spring! The warm weather and blooming plants brings to mind ladies in pastel dresses and beautiful hats enjoying time on the veranda. Since we are in the south you can add sweet tea and deviled eggs into the mix! Springtime also lends itself to new habits and old-fashioned hospitality, so get ready to welcome this season with our spring ideas.

photo by Sincerely, Liz: Photography

photo by Sincerely, Liz: Photography

*Switch out seasonal clothing items. Pull the winter coats, hats, snow boots and heavy scarves from their places and pack them away. Replace them with lightweight scarves, sun hats, rain boots and raincoats.

*Switch out seasonal bedding. Even if you don’t have time to do a full-blown spring-cleaning, switching out bedding and blankets can make a huge difference. Wash all the thick blankets and flannel sheets and tuck them under the bed. Pull out cotton sheets and spritz with lavender. Toss light weight throws around the house and knock the dust out of your throw pillows.

*Buy a new hat. We may no longer wear hats on a daily basis, but the spring weather often means more time in the sun. A sun hat can add a fun flair to your wardrobe and keep your skin considerably happier. Check out thrift stores and your favorite vintage haunts as well as yard sales for some great finds.

*Grow something. Maybe you don’t have the space or talent for a huge garden, but anyone can grow some herbs – or a simply flower – in a pot on the kitchen windowsill.

*Bring spring inside. _The unpredictable weather this time of year makes going outside iffy some days, so fresh cut flowers helps to brighten the indoors. Of course you can place them on the kitchen counter or dining table, but also use fresh flowers to pep up your desk, craft area or bedside.

*Get downtown. After being cooped up inside all winter, take a Saturday to wander around downtown feels utterly indulgent. Grab a cup of coffee or tea from a local shop and then dip into boutiques, bookstores, and antique shops. This can be inspiring on so many levels, and be sure to check out our fun listing.

*Celebrate. In winter, we tend to stay at home and get cozy with our families, but spring is for celebrating. Easter, Mother’s Day, graduation… use anything as an excuse to gather together. Host a backyard BBQ or a casual brunch with the girls. Just set out some muffins, yogurt and pitchers (or pots) of tea, and you will have the perfect excuse to wear that new hat.

Check out these great, local shopping areas to discover:

  • Downtown Lynchburg
  • Historic City Market, Roanoke
  • Main Street Salem
  • Grandin Village, Roanoke
  • Centertown Bedford
  • Boonsboro, Lynchburg