Cooking in the Kitchen

Summer Stovetop Potpourri Ideas

There is nothing better than coming home to a deliciously inviting scent to warm the soul, even during the hottest months of the year! A cozy home is engaging each of the five senses and that includes our sense of smell. These summer stovetop potpourri ideas will do just that. Citrus, herbs, and spices are the perfect natural scents to bring the smell of summer into your home.

Stovetop Potpourri

During the cooler months I always have a pot of stovetop potpourri simmering on the stove with spicy aromas filling our home. (You can find my Christmas stovetop potpourri, here.) Why not do the same for summer but with fresher, lighter scents like citrus and herbs! Stovetop potpourri is a simple and inexpensive way to add seasonal scents (that are completely customizable) to your home.

Summer in the Kitchen
Cooking in the Kitchen

One of the great things about stovetop potpourri is that it’s a great way to use up edible ingredients (typically fruit, herbs, spices) that may be old or expiring. Maybe you made homemade lemonade with fresh lemons. Take the squeezed lemons, that you normally would have thrown away, and add them to a stovetop potpourri. Those squeezed lemons will smell delicious for days simmering on your stove! Or maybe you made my DIY Lemon & Herb Citronella Candles. Take the lemons and the herbs once your candle has burned out, and use them in a stovetop potpourri.

Summer in the Kitchen

Stovetop Potpourri is a great natural alternative to candles, air fresheners, or diffusers. Once you start simmering your own potpourri, you will love the delicious fragrances that will permeate your home.

Cooking in the Kitchen
Limes & Herbs

Here are 3 simple stovetop potpourri recipes that will instantly make your home smell like summer!

Williams-Sonoma Stovetop Potpourri

Lemon & Herb Stovetop Potpourri

Walk through one of my favorite stores, Williams-Sonoma and you are met with the soothing aroma of citrus and spice. You can recreate that amazing Williams-Sonoma fragrance in your own home with lemons, rosemary, vanilla, and peppercorns.

Lemon & Herb Stovetop Potpourri

Ingredients:

  • 3 Sprigs rosemary
  • 1 Lemon, sliced
  • 1 tsp. Vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp. Black peppercorns
  • 8 cups Water
Summer Stovetop Potpourri

Directions:

In a Dutch oven, combine rosemary, lemon, vanilla extract, and peppercorns. Cover with water and bring to a simmer over low heat. Continue to simmer, uncovered for up to 2 hours. Replenish water as needed. Can be used for multiple days (keep pot covered when not simmering), as long as water is replenished.

Lemon & Herbs
Lemon & Herbs

Tropical Stovetop Potpourri

Simmering Stovetop Potpourri

Bring the scent of the tropics into your home with this stovetop potpourri filled with lemons, limes, oranges, pineapple, and coconut. The delicious aroma of this potpourri will transport you to the Bahamas or the Caribbean without the cost of a plane ticket.

Citrus & Pineapple Juice

Ingredients:

  • 1 Lemon, sliced
  • 1 Lime, sliced
  • 1 Orange, sliced
  • 1 can Pineapple juice
  • 1 tsp. Coconut extract
  • 8 cups Water
Tropical Stovetop Potpourri

Directions:

In a Dutch oven, combine lemon, lime, orange, pineapple juice, and coconut extract. Cover with water and bring to a simmer over low heat. Continue to simmer, uncovered for up to 2 hours. Replenish water as needed. Can be used for multiple days (keep pot covered when not simmering), as long as water is replenished.

Tropical Stovetop Potpourri
Tropical Stovetop Potpourri

All Green Stovetop Potpourri

All Green Stovetop Potpourri

All green stovetop potpourri is my favorite to have simmering on the stove during the summertime. This potpourri will make your home smell fresh and clean with mint, thyme, limes, and vanilla extract.

All Green Stovetop Potpourri

Ingredients:

  • 2 Limes, sliced
  • 4 Sprigs thyme
  • 2 Sprigs mint
  • 1 tsp. Vanilla extract
  • 8 cups Water
Herbs & Limes

Directions:

In a Dutch oven, combine limes, mint, thyme, and vanilla extract. Cover with water and bring to a simmer over low heat. Continue to simmer, uncovered for up to 2 hours. Replenish water as needed. Can be used for multiple days (keep pot covered when not simmering), as long as water is replenished.

All Green Stovetop Potpourri
All Green Stovetop Potpourri

Stovetop potpourri is completely customizable! You can use these recipes as a base or a template to create your own personalized potpourri for your home. The options of the type of fruit, herbs, and spices you use are endless. No matter what you use, I guarantee your home will smell amazing!

Summer in the Kitchen

Links to products featured in this post can be found in our new “Shop Our Home” page. I hope this page makes shopping our home a little easier for you! I earn a small commission when you make a purchase from one of our LTK links. Your support helps me continue to create meaningful content for you!

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Neutral Kitchen

Cozy Kitchen Corner

My love of a cozy home is apparent! For those of you that have been here for a while, you know that there are certain areas of our home that I love to style and update frequently. This cozy kitchen corner is one of them.

I am not entirely sure why this kitchen corner is one of my favorite spaces in our home. It just makes me feel cozy and happy. When we recently installed beadboard in this area, the cozy meter flew off the charts for me!

Summer Style

Our original plan for this cozy kitchen corner was to add wooden hanging pegs to the trim piece going along the top of the beadboard (similar to this shelf we installed in another part of the kitchen). However, when I stumbled upon these gold sweet home signs with hooks at Target, I began to imagine something slightly different here. Instead of installing the hanging pegs on the trim, we hung 3 of the sweet home wall signs on the beadboard (I always like to group items in odd numbers). I absolutely adore the character, the pop of gold, and the functionality these signs add to this little corner.

Market Bag
Summer Home
View From the Kitchen

The signs include 2 gold screws and 2 anchors each, however the signs I purchased were missing a couple of each. Instead of returning the signs or searching for gold screws, we used regular black screws and applied Rub ‘n Buff in European Gold to match the screws to the color of the signs.

We did not anchor the screws into the wall because we screwed the signs into the beadboard. However, I would recommend using anchors if you install these signs on drywall or sheetrock.

Rub 'n Buff
Sweet Home Sign

I kept the styling of this kitchen corner very simple for summer by adding a market bag and a couple of towels for the pool. The French door in this corner of our kitchen leads out to the pool area so this is a great spot to hang essentials for swimming and sunbathing. These wall hooks have become very convenient!

Summer View

I hung these blue stripped towels from Hearth & Hand by Magnolia on two of the hooks. The fringe detail on the towels is so pretty and the blue stripes are absolutely perfect for summer! Blue is one of my favorite colors to use in our home during the summer months. You can see more ways I incorporate blue into our home for summer, here.

Kitchen Corner
Summer Home View

The market bag I hung on one of the hooks is also from the Hearth & Hand by Magnolia line. It’s a great summer bag for the beach, or a trip to the farmer’s market, or for packing a picnic. I love the organic texture of this bag and the coziness it adds to this corner.

Kitchen Corner
Sunflowers
Beadboard

These sweet home signs would look amazing hung by a front door as a single sign or grouped together in multiples. The hooks are the ideal size to hang keys, leashes, hats, bags or coats.

Summer View

To complete this kitchen corner (for now!) I added a new, neutral area rug. I wanted a rug here that was sturdy enough to soak up wet feet coming in from the pool, but a rug that was cozy too. This rug is the perfect fit for this corner!

Kitchen Rug
Cozy Kitchen Corner

This cozy kitchen corner is not finished! We will be installing wallpaper above the beadboard by the end of the summer. I cannot wait to show you the wallpaper that we chose for our kitchen and entryway. Stay tuned. It is going to make this space even cozier…if that’s even possible!

View of Our Home

Links to products featured in this post can be found in our new “Shop Our Home” page. I hope this page makes shopping our home a little easier for you! I earn a small commission when you make a purchase from one of our LTK links. Your support helps me continue to create meaningful content for you!

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Summer in New England

DIY Lemon & Herb Citronella Candles

Simple and easy DIY lemon & herb citronella candles are the perfect way to ward off summer’s unwanted biting insects.

It’s officially summer at our house when the sun begins to set and the yard becomes filled with our least favorite insect, mosquitos. They are a nuisance and force us to head indoors sooner than we are ready. With our property surrounded by wetlands, we will never be able to rid our yard of all mosquitos. However, these lemon & herb citronella candles may provide us a little sanity and a few more minutes outside!

Citronella Candles

This was my first time making DIY citronella candles. I can assure you, it will not be my last. These candles are unbelievably easy to assemble, smell divine, and repel mosquitos naturally.

Ingredients
Lemons & Limes

Supplies You Will Need:

  • Gather mason jars of varying sizes (or use all the same size). I like grouping these candles in 3’s with jars of all varying heights.
  • Round up a few floating candles. I used these.
  • Snip fresh rosemary sprigs from the garden. Fresh sprigs of lavender or basil would also work for this.
  • Slice lemons and limes. The amount of lemons & limes you need will depend on the amount of candles you are making & the size of the jar. On average, I used about 2-3 lemon slices and 2-3 lime slices per jar.
  • Purchase an organic lemongrass or citronella essential oil. I used this lemongrass essential oil.
DIY Citronella Candles
Floating Candle

How to make DIY Lemon & Herb Citronella Candles:

Fill your mason jars this way:

  • First start by adding the lemon and lime slices. I used about 3 lemon slices and 2 lime slices for the large mason jars and about 1-2 lemon slices and 2 lime slices for the small mason jars.
  • Add 1-2 springs of rosemary.
  • Fill mason jar with water until an inch below the lid rings.
  • Add about 20 drops of the essential oil. Take a butter knife or spoon and mix the ingredients in the jar carefully.
  • Place the floating candle on top.
Summer Tablescape

These DIY citronella candles will last up to 3 days before the fruit and herbs will start to go bad. However, you could add the fruit and herbs to a stovetop potpourri for a day or so before tossing! Stovetop potpourri is such a great use of old fruit & herbs. You can find one of my stovetop potpourri recipes here.

DIY Citronella Candles

Not only do these candles repel bugs naturally, but I cannot get over how beautiful they are too! How perfect would these be for summer entertaining?! These candles would be so gorgeous lined up down the center of a table for an outdoor dinner party. Or grouped together in odd numbers like I have here!

Summer Tablescape
DIY Candles

For a video tutorial on how to make these simple DIY lemon & herb citronella candles, visit my reel highlight on Instagram titled DIY. I would love to know if you make these! Tag me on social media or leave me a comment here and let me know!

Links to products featured in this post can be found in our new “Shop Our Home” page. I hope this page makes shopping our home a little easier for you! I earn a small commission when you make a purchase from one of our LTK links. Your support helps me continue to create meaningful content for you!

I look forward to sharing more of my home with you and inspiring you to have a well loved home! Follow me on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, and LIKEtoKNOW.it.

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How to Create a Hydrangea Centerpiece

A hydrangea centerpiece is one of my favorite centerpieces to create! With summer now here and hydrangea coming into season, I wanted to share a simple and easy way to create your own hydrangea centerpiece. Hydrangea blooms are beautiful to look at in outdoor landscapes, but they are even prettier when clipped and brought indoors to be styled inside your home, as a centerpiece. I love going out into our yard and clipping a few fresh stems to style on our kitchen island or placing a handful in a vase in our built-in bookshelves.

Hydrangea are not quite in season here in the northeast (just a few more weeks to go!) however that has not stopped me (and shouldn’t stop you) from enjoying these beautiful flowers all spring long thanks to my local Trader Joe’s! Fresh hydrangea stems transformed into centerpieces and bouquets have become a staple in our home from spring all the way through the end of summer.

Over the years, I’ve learned a few tips and tricks when it comes to creating hydrangea centerpieces as well as the secrets to keeping your hydrangea centerpieces looking fresher longer!

sink full of flowers
sink full of flowers
sink full of flowers

Where to Purchase Hydrangea

If you do not have hydrangea growing in your yard or if they are just not in season yet, your local grocery store is a great resource to purchase gorgeous hydrangea stems. My favorite go-to grocery store to purchase hydrangea (or any other flowers for that matter) is Trader Joe’s. The fresh cut flower selection is always phenomenal and their prices are relatively inexpensive.

I’ve noticed that the local supermarkets in our area have upped their “flower game” by stocking a more robust flower selection to include bunches of hydrangea. You will pay a slightly higher premium when purchasing hydrangea at the supermarket, however when you’re in need of the big beautiful blooms, you may be willing to spend a little more money.

  • Trader Joe’s $5.99/3 stems
  • Local Supermarket $12.99-19.99/3-5 stems (this will vary by supermarket & time of year)

Simple & Easy Ways to Create a Hydrangea Centerpiece

Hydrangea centerpieces are one of the easiest to arrange and are extremely versatile! You don’t need many hydrangea stems to create an impactful centerpiece because of the fluffy, voluminous blooms.

One of my favorite ways to create a centerpiece with hydrangea is by simply adding a handful to a vessel such as a pitcher, wooden bucket, glass vase, or a vintage trophy. The amount of hydrangea stems you will need will depend on the vessel you are using (keep reading…I am going to share a trick when using a wide mouthed vessel!) but typically you will want to add an odd number of stems to fill your centerpiece.

When only adding hydrangea stems to your vessel, you are going to have a more rounded centerpiece with blooms beginning where another one ends. I love how an all hydrangea centerpiece looks big and fluffy…it’s so fun and organic looking!

hydrangea centerpiece
hydrangea centerpiece
hydrangea centerpiece

To create a hydrangea centerpiece, you will first need to decide on the vessel you will be using to know how many hydrangea stems to purchase (or cut from your landscape). I chose to use a vintage silver trophy for this centerpiece, which you will want fill fairly full of water. Hydrangea stems are extremely top heavy, so to help me create this centerpiece and to keep the blooms & stems in place, I used a taping technique.

To use this technique, simply create a grid on your vessel ( keeping the grid squares as large or as small as you like) with regular scotch tape (see photo above). When your grid is in place, you can start adding in your hydrangea stems. Cut your stems (see tips on this farther down this blog post) all about the same length. (Length will vary on the vessel. Once you have one stem cut to the correct length, use that stem as a guide as to how long the other stems should be.)

Continue to fill the vessel with hydrangea stems, placing each stem into a square in your tape grid, until you have achieved the desired fullness of your centerpiece. After you have your centerpiece is done, you can go back and remove the tape grid. However, you cannot see the grid when once all the flowers have been added so typically I do not remove it.

I like creating all white hydrangea centerpieces as it can lend itself to so many occasions. White hydrangea centerpieces are perfect for weddings, showers, summer cookouts, or simply placed on your kitchen countertop. The options are endless when it comes to the centerpiece you create and how it can be used!

If you like a little more color in your centerpiece, check out this arrangement I put together with blue hydrangea perfect for Memorial Day or 4th of July!

hydrangea centerpiece
hydrangea centerpiece
hydrangea centerpiece

Hydrangea make a beautiful centerpiece on their own, however hydrangea can be used as a filler flower as well. Mix other flowers into your centerpiece for a different look! When deciding on other flowers to add to your centerpiece, remember to think in groups of three. For this centerpiece, I added beautiful white peonies & roses to complete the group of odd numbered flowers (odd numbers are always more pleasing to the eye).

I tucked the smaller roses throughout the centerpiece into the hydrangea to make the hydrangea blooms appear smaller. The larger peonies, I placed those throughout the centerpiece as well, but between the hydrangea stems. I left a couple of the green leaves on the peonies, because I loved the little pop of green against the white flowers. You can make this a more vibrant centerpiece with flowers of varying colors. I love the gorgeous monochromatic look of all white flowers in this vintage silver vessel!

hydrangea centerpiece
hydrangea centerpiece
hydrangea centerpiece

Tips & Tricks to Keeping Your Hydrangea Blooms Looking Fresher Longer

There is nothing more frustrating than creating a centerpiece and within the next day or even hours your hydrangea are wilted and limp. This has happened to me numerous times until I learned a few tricks to help keep those blooms lasting longer. The most important fact to know about hydrangea is their need for water…lots of water. Your centerpiece should stay well watered (add fresh water daily) to keep the hydrangea flowers fresh and full. Hydrangea actually comes from the Greek words “hydor”, which means water and “angos”, meaning jar or vessel…such an appropriate name for a water loving flower!

hydrangea tips
hydrangea tips
hydrangea tips

In order for the hydrangea stems to drink as much water as possible, give your stems a fresh cut when you bring them home. Cut the stems at a 45 degree angle, then cut up the stem about an inch from the bottom. This allows the hydrangea stem to drink as much water as possible. (See photo above for reference.) Next, you want to remove the leaves from the stem (sometimes I will leave 1-2 on depending on the style centerpiece I am creating). The leaves require water so by removing them, the hydrangea flowers will be able to soak up more water and will stay fresher longer.

If your hydrangea flowers do begin to droop, don’t worry! Fill a sink full of cold water and submerge the hydrangea flowers & stem into the cold water. Leave them in the cold water for several hours or overnight. Within several hours your droopy, wilted flowers will start to look full & voluminous again. Once flowers have returned to their fullness, remove from the water, shake off any excess water, snip a little of the stem off the end, and put back into your centerpiece. I have had hydrangea last several days after using this technique to revive them!

hydrangea centerpiece
hydrangea centerpiece
hydrangea centerpiece

Links to products featured in this post can be found in our new “Shop Our Home” page. I hope this page makes shopping our home a little easier for you! I do earn a small commission when you make a purchase from one of our LTK links. Your support helps me continue to create meaningful content for you!

I look forward to sharing more of my home with you and inspiring you to have a well loved home! Follow me on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, and LIKEtoKNOW.it.


DIY Mother’s Day Gift & Tablescape

Mother’s Day is less than a week away, are you ready?! If not, I’ve got another Mother’s Day gift idea for you! Last week, I shared gift ideas from some of my favorite retailers, you can read that post here. However, this week I wanted to share with you an inexpensive and easy gift that little ones can help with and one that mom will love.

Fresh herbs planted in aged terracotta pots. Each Mother’s Day, I ask Dave for herbs to plant in our planter we have on our back deck right next to the kitchen. I love having fresh herbs all summer long that I can easily access while I’m cooking. I use them in everything from salad dressings to sauces to marinades for meat & poultry, and even ice cream! (You can find my rosemary ice cream recipe, here.) One of the other great things about growing herbs is the delicious scents that eminent from them and the wonderful aromas that fill our deck and kitchen!

Instead of gifting mom an herb in the ugly plastic container that comes from the store with the ugly plastic plant label…let’s make it special by transplanting the herbs into beautiful aged terracotta pots (that we aged ourselves!) and adding super cute wooden plant labels! I had aged terracotta pots a few weeks ago for our front porch (read that post here) and had such a fun time doing that, I thought I would age more pots for these herb gifts. Some other fun ideas to dress up a basic terracotta pots besides aging them would be painting with acrylic paints or decoupaging (littles would have so much fun helping with any of these techniques!). Aging terracotta is super easy technique I found on Liz Marie Blog.

Mother's Day Gift Idea
Herbs
Herb Labels

To age terracotta pots you only need a few things; organic garden lime, water, clay pots (for the herbs I bought 4″ pots), matching clay saucer, bowl for mixing, and a paint brush. To make the aging mixture, add 1 cup of lime to bowl and mix with 1 cup of water (ratio is 1:1). Stir until lime fully dissolves in water, mixture will resemble mud. To apply the lime mixture, use a paint brush to brush the mixture onto the clay pots & saucers, making sure to coat pot evenly. Allow to fully dry and if desired, apply 1 to 2 more coats (I applied 3 coats to the pots pictured here). That’s it!

Once your clay pots are fully dried from the aging process (should only take an hour or so) you can transplant your herbs into their new pots. You can use any herbs that you or mom like for this DIY. I purchased rosemary, thyme, oregano, sage, chives, and mint. Note: You may need a handful or two of potting soil when transplanting (we like to use Miracle-Gro Potting Soil). Once you’ve transplanted your herbs, water in, and add the wooden herb tag. You can purchase the tags I used here (I also like these), or you can also make your own with popsicle sticks!

Mother's Day Gift Idea
Herbs in Terracotta Pots
Herbs

Your DIY herb pots are now ready for gifting to mom, how easy was that! Let’s not stop there though…

I took the herb pots and made a tablescape with them! If you’re hosting a Mother’s Day breakfast, brunch, lunch, or dinner this would be the perfect tablescape to display your potted herb gifts and then have mom take the centerpiece when done!

Mother's Day Tablescape
Herb Centerpiece

For this tablescape, I started by adding a runner to the center of the table. Then, I centered two of the herb pots in the middle of the table and the runner. I added three mason jars on either side of the herb pots using a large, medium, and small mason jars on either side of the centered herb pots with a votive candle inside each mason jar. I then added another two herb pots on either end of the table (other side of mason jars) to complete the center of our tablescape.

Mother's Day Table
Place Setting
Candles in Mason Jars

I kept the place settings simple for this tablescape with white plates, clear drinking glasses, and gold utensils. I used a napkin that matched the table runner which I then tied with a simple twine bow and inserted an extra wooden plant tag into each napkin.

Light the candles and your table is ready to celebrate mom this Mother’s Day!

Herbs as a Centerpiece
Mother's Day Tablescape

Links to products featured in this post can be found in our new “Shop Our Home” page. I hope this page makes shopping our home a little easier for you! I do earn a small commission when you make a purchase from one of our LTK links. Your support helps me continue to create meaningful content for you!

I look forward to sharing more of my home with you and inspiring you to have a well loved home! Follow me on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, and LIKEtoKNOW.it.


3 Easy Ways to Update Your Front Porch for Spring

It’s that time of the year here in New England when the warmer temperatures arrive and us New Englanders can’t wait to get back outside and soak up the rays of sunshine after a long winter. Dave and I start getting the itch right around this time of year (more Dave than I) to head outside to start cleaning up the yard, freshening up the beds, and removing any old décor from the holidays. Living in the northeast, we know we need to enjoy any and all warm, sunny days because it doesn’t last long around here! We still have a lot to do to get the yard ready for the season, but a simple refresh to our front porch was a great way to get us started and is a beautiful way to welcome our guests. If you’re itching to get outside like we were to start freshening up your outdoor spaces, I have three simple updates that can be done to your entrance or porch this spring that will take no more than a trip to your local box store and couple hours of your time. Remember to enjoy the fresh air and getting your hands in the dirt, before you know it, Fall will be upon us again!

1. Add Pots or Planters with Fresh Flowers

Your front porch should reflect your home and how you want to present it to the world. It’s the place people see when driving by and it’s the first space someone sees before ever stepping foot in your home. The plants and the pots you select for your front porch should be a reflection of your style as well as an extension of your landscape. For our front porch, we added terracotta pots. I wanted a terracotta style pot but without the orange color, so I followed a simple aging technique I found on Liz Marie Blog last year for terracotta pots. This aging technique was so simple and gave the pots exactly the color and antique look I was going for. I absolutely loved the result and can’t wait to do this on more terracotta pots either this summer or next year! (Here is the link to the aging technique that I used: Aged Terra Cotta Pots.)The plants we selected to place in the pots were a Scarlett O’Hara Pieris (white flowers on the left of the door), Forsythia (yellow flowers to the right of the door), and a Butterfly Blue Pincushion Flower (purple flowers to the right of the door). Each one of these plants we selected can be removed from the pots and transplanted somewhere else in our yard once they are done flowering or get too large for the pots. We also made sure each one of these plants prefer full sun, since this part of our home gets quite a bit of sunlight. The plants in your neck of the woods may vary from ours, so be sure to check the care instructions of any plants you are purchasing to make sure they will thrive where you are placing them in your landscape.

Here are a few more pots and planters I am loving for a front porch!

2. Hang a Wreath on Your Front Door

For me, there is no easier way to freshen up our front entrance and front door than by hanging a beautiful, seasonal wreath on it! You don’t even have to change your wreath seasonally either. Choose a wreath (I like wreaths made of faux materials since they will last longer) that can be used for your door for multiple seasons (olive leaf, eucalyptus, fern, any type of greenery really) and simply change the ribbon (for spring I like to use ribbon in shades of yellows, pinks, or purples). That’s it! Such an easy way to change your front door without making a big purchase or having to store multiple wreaths for different holidays or seasons. Another way I like to make a big impact with a wreath on our door is by changing the location of where the wreath is hung. Most people hang their wreath from the top of the door, change that up! Instead of hanging from the top of the door, try hanging your wreath a quarter way or halfway down your door. I promise changing the location of the wreath on your door, will make your front door feel unique and brand new!

Here are a few more inexpensive wreaths for the front door that I am loving!

3. Replace Old Door Mats

Adding a new doormat to your entrance creates a fresh, clean look for the upcoming season! I don’t know about your home, but our doormat takes a beating after the long winter so, spring is the perfect time to add a new one. Doormats are fairly inexpensive and I like to change ours quite often. I also love to layer mats or rugs and our entrance is no exception! For our front entrance, I like to take a slightly larger rug with colors and/or patterns and then layer a fun coir mat on top. It adds dimension and texture to our entrance, creating visual interest for our visitors. There are so many fun coir mats to choose from these days! I recently discovered Coco Mats N More, a company that sells personalized coconut coir mats as well as other holiday or themed designed coir mats. I loved this home themed mat that I purchased and thought it would look pretty as a welcoming mat into our home. The coir mat I selected came with the black and white checked rug…how perfect is that, one less thing I had to shop for?! The best part of shopping Coco Mats N More…I have a coupon code! Use code ELEANORROSEHOME for 20% off your purchase sitewide. So, ditch the old worn out rug at your front door and choose a new one that’s fun, shows your personality, and is welcoming to guests as they enter your home!

I hope this blog shows you that you don’t need to do much to refresh your front porch! Add some pretty pots with beautiful flowers, hang a wreath with seasonal ribbon, add a new fresh door mat, and presto your front entrance will feel fresh & brand new!

Links to products featured in this post can be found in our new “Shop Our Home” page. I hope this page makes shopping our home a little easier for you! I do earn a small commission when you make a purchase from one of our LTK links. Your support helps me continue to create meaningful content for you!

I look forward to sharing more of my home with you and inspiring you to have a well loved home! Follow me on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, and LIKEtoKNOW.it.


How To Naturally Dye Easter Eggs

Dyeing Easter eggs was one of my favorite Easter traditions growing up. We would dye the eggs and place them into a basket filled with green plastic grass. It was something I looked forward to each year, along with decorating our Easter tree with fuzzy chicks, plastic eggs, and painted bunny ornaments. We would go to the grocery store down the street from our home to buy a dozen white eggs and the PAAS Easter Egg dyeing kit to color the eggs. Then we would head home to hard boil the eggs before coloring. After the eggs were cooked and cooled (and after gagging a little from the smell), my sister and I would take the wax pencil that was included in the dye kit and draw shapes and patterns onto the eggs. We would then dip the eggs into the dye and watch the eggs turn fun shades of red, yellow, orange, green, and hues of blues & purples. Do you remember the small sheet of stickers that came with the dye kit, stickers you would stick to the egg after it was colored? Well truth be told, I never liked or used the stickers on the eggs! It drove me nuts that the flat sticker wouldn’t fully stick to the round egg. (You can see that my obsession in attention to detail started at an early age.) We would save the stickers for other craft projects, ones that didn’t include sticking stickers to round objects. Once the eggs were colored, my mom would eventually make deviled eggs, or egg salad, or creamed eggs on toast. Now the difference between the home I grew up in and my home today…you will not find any of those egg recipes in my house (we are not fans of hard boiled eggs)!

When my children were younger, I used to buy the same dye kits. However, in our home these days, we are more conscience of the food we eat, the cleaners we use, and the overall ingredients of the food or products we bring into our home and put into our bodies. I typically only purchase organic foods and all natural cleaners for our home. So this year, I decided to dye our Easter eggs with natural ingredients from foods/spices we already had in our refrigerator and in our pantry. We used red cabbage, turmeric, and beets to dye our Easter eggs which resulted in eggs shaded in beautiful spring pastels of blue, yellow, and pink. I think they look like oversized Cadbury mini eggs, don’t you?! There are a bunch of other natural foods & drinks that you can use to dye your eggs with too, continue reading to the end of this blog post for more foods you can use for dyeing. This dyeing process is easy and one I really enjoyed, and think you will enjoy also!

Before starting the dyeing process, I recommend preparing a working area to handle these highly staining dyes. They will stain everything from cutting boards, to clothes, to kitchen counters! Wear an apron or clothes that you are ok getting stains on. Cover your work area with a plastic tablecloth, old towels, or lots of newspapers and/or paper towels before beginning.

You will need one dozen hard boiled white eggs.

BLUE EASTER EGG DYE:

  • 1/2 head read cabbage (cut into 1/8 strips)
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 tablespoon vinegar
  1. Place sliced cabbage and water in a medium sized pot over high heat. Bring to boil, then cover and remove from heat. Let stand for 1 hour. Pour mixture through a colander to remove cabbage; discard solids. Stir in vinegar. Your dye is ready for use.
  2. To dye, fill a mason jar about 1/2 full with dye, and gently lower in egg. Let sit for about 20 minutes, turning occasionally.
  3. Using a slotted spoon, carefully remove egg from dye and set on a paper towel to dry. (Note: Eggs will appear lavender after removing from dye. Dye will transform to a more blueish shade within a few minutes.) Turn eggs occasionally so all sides dry, eggs are typically dry in about 15-20 minutes. Once mostly dry, wipe off any excess dye with paper towels.

YELLOW EASTER EGG DYE:

  • 2 teaspoons ground turmeric
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 tablespoon vinegar
  1. Place turmeric and water in a medium sized pot over high heat. Bring to boil then remove from heat. Let sit until cool. Stir in vinegar. Your dye is ready for use.
  2. To dye, fill a mason jar about 1/2 full with dye, and gently lower in egg. Let sit for about 15 minutes, turning occasionally.
  3. Using a slotted spoon, carefully remove egg from dye and set on a paper towel to dry. Turn eggs occasionally so all sides dry, eggs are typically dry in about 15-20 minutes. Once mostly dry, wipe off any excess dye with paper towels.

PINK EASTER EGG DYE:

  • 1 medium beet (washed and quartered)
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 tablespoon vinegar
  1. Place beet and water in a medium sized pot over high heat. Bring to boil, then cover and remove from heat. Let stand for 1 hour. Pour mixture through a colander to remove beets; discard solids. Stir in vinegar. Your dye is ready for use.
  2. To dye, fill a mason jar about 1/2 full with dye, and gently lower in egg. Let sit for about 30 minutes, turning occasionally.
  3. Using a slotted spoon, carefully remove egg from dye and set on a paper towel to dry. Turn eggs occasionally so all sides dry, eggs are typically dry in about 15-20 minutes. Once mostly dry, wipe off any excess dye with paper towels.

Easter Egg Dyeing Tips:

  • Let eggs sit in dye baths for a longer period of time. The longer the eggs are in the bath, the deeper the colors will become (can even soak overnight in the fridge). For lighter shades, remove from dye bath sooner.
  • Be creative when dying your eggs and think outside the box. Dip half an egg in one color dye and the other half in another color dye for a two toned egg!
  • Rub a small amount of olive oil on your eggs for a little added shine.
  • No white eggs? You can use brown eggs too, however the dye colors will be more muted.
  • Use other natural ingredients to dye your eggs. Here are some other natural ingredients great for dying due to their high color pigmentation: yellow onion skins, blueberries, grape juice, parsley, avocado pits, spinach, carrot juice, tea, coffee.

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I look forward to sharing more of my home with you and inspiring you to have a well loved home! Follow me on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, and LIKEtoKNOW.it.


Stamped Easter Napkins

Easter is a little over a week away, and that has me scrambling to get all of the Easter crafts, décor, recipes, and more that have been stewing in my head for few weeks out to you! Since I started this blog, I find myself with so many seasonal ideas and not enough time to share them all before the holiday is upon us. Easter is no exception! Today, I’ve joined some friends on an Easter blog hop to bring you more inspiration before Easter is in our rearview mirror. Continue reading to the end of this blog post for links to their blog posts and more Easter inspiration!

This week, I was inspired to create my own Easter napkins from something I saw on Pinterest, and I couldn’t love these napkins that I created more. If you’re looking for a simple way to elevate your table for this year’s Easter brunch, lunch, or dinner…this craft is for you! These stamped bunny napkins would be the cutest addition to your table, couldn’t have been quicker or easier to make, and look like you spent a small fortune on custom napkins for your home. This craft only requires five relatively inexpensive items and a small amount of your time but will make the biggest impact on your table whether you entertain your Easter guests with an elaborate tablescape or choose to host Easter dinner as less formal affair (more my family’s forte).

Here is what you will need to create your own stamped Easter napkins:

  • White Cotton/Linen Napkins – I chose these napkins with a lace edge.
  • Rabbit or Easter Stamp – I loved this bunny stamp, but any stamp would work!
  • Permanent Ink Stamp Pad – I used a brown ink pad, you could choose any color.
  • Ribbon – Use your favorite ribbon, this is the one I used!
  • Iron

To start this craft, decide upon the napkin that you want to add your stamp too. For our home, I purchased a twelve pack of white cotton/linen blend napkins with lace edge detail. I chose this napkin because I loved the lace detail along with the vintage style. You will want to find an inexpensive cotton, linen, or cotton/linen blend napkin you love and use that for your stamp. The important part is that you choose a napkin made of natural fibers to ensure your stamp will adhere. Here’s another napkin I love, or this one would be cute too!

Iron your napkins with the highest heat setting (with steam), removing all creases and wrinkles. You want to do this so that your stamp comes out neat and clean, and isn’t smudged or placed on a part of the napkin that is wrinkly. As you iron each napkin, move to a clean, flat surface. Cotton and linen can wrinkle very easily!

Once all of your napkins are ironed, keep off to the side. This next step is optional! In order to ensure that I was going to be using the right amount of ink on my stamp with the right amount of pressure, I took a scrap piece of fabric and on a clean, flat surface practiced stamping the stamp on the napkin. This way when I went to stamp my napkins, I knew how much ink I needed and how hard to press down on the stamp. If you are confident in your stamping abilities, you can skip that step! When you are ready to officially stamp your ironed napkins, take one napkin at a time, place on a clean, flat surface, place stamp in ink, then place your inked stamp on one of the four corners of the napkin. Make sure each stamp you press on each napkin is in the same location and at the same angle, that way all of the napkins are uniform. As you stamp each napkin, place off to the side to allow the stamp to dry completely, being careful not to smudge stamp.

Allow the stamp on each napkin to fully dry (about 10-20 minutes), then with a warm iron, iron over the stamp to seal and set it. Do not use steam when ironing over the stamp as this could cause the ink to run or spread on the napkin. Once you seal the stamp on the napkin, they should be safe for using and washing.

Your Easter napkins are just about ready for your table. The final step, is tying your napkins with ribbon for your Easter place settings. I decided to use an organic brown twine ribbon for these napkins. I liked the texture and color of this ribbon, with the bunny print and lace detail of the napkin. You can get creative with the ribbon you choose! There a multitude of ribbon choices from gingham, to striped, to extra wide, or even layer different textured or patterned ribbons together. Cut your ribbon in 12″ lengths. To fold your napkins for tying, fold the napkin in half by matching opposite corners together with the bunny stamp facing you at the bottom of the napkin (see photos below). Take one of your ribbon lengths and tie in a knot or a bow about 1/4″ down from the top of your napkin. Leave the ribbon tails as long or as short as you like. Always remember to finish the ends of your tails by folding the bottom tail in half, and then cutting an upside down “V”. Doing this will help to prevent your ribbon from fraying and leaves a polished end to your tail!

That’s it! Can you believe how simple and easy but absolutely adorable these napkins are?! I can’t wait to set these on our Easter table, but in the meantime, I styled these napkins simply on our kitchen table with a few carrot cake cupcakes, our white china, and an urn of orange tulips.

Interested in seeing a video tutorial on how to make these napkins? Check out this reel I shared on Instagram!

There is so much more Easter inspiration to be had! Check out these blog posts from my talented blogger friends:

Emily ~ LeCultivateur ~ SIMPLE EASTER DECOR IDEAS

Rebecca ~ Rouse in the House ~ DIY EASTER EGG DYE

Cynthia ~ Vintage and Grace Living ~ BEAUTIFUL SPRING EASTER TABLE CENTERPIECE IDEAS

Links to products featured in this post can be found in our new “Shop Our Home” page. I hope this page makes shopping our home a little easier for you! I do earn a small commission when you make a purchase from one of our LTK links. Your support helps me continue to create meaningful content for you!

I look forward to sharing more of my home with you and inspiring you to have a well loved home! Follow me on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, and LIKEtoKNOW.it.