Decorating Ideas

It’s beginning to look a lot like fall around these parts! I have so many decorating ideas floating around in my head! I promise Mr. Fancy Pants to keep the glitter to a minimum. Sometimes though, when the holidays roll around, a little glitter or sequins is 100% necessary!

Anyway, I’ve had my eye on these two pictures as inspiration for a while now.  Sunday afternoon I created my own version of both!  I saw the pine cone garland last year I think.  I never got around to it, but the idea was held up in the decorating depths back in the back of my brain.

Pine Cone garland

The instructions on Twig and Thistle make the project seem so easy.  I am happy to say that it actually was.  The only change I would recommend would be a pair of crafting gloves.  My garland strand has 15 pine cones on it and by cone #8 my hands were getting a little sore!  You can see the original post about the garland (including directions and materials) here.

I had also seen this idea for a fireplace on none other than Pinterest.  I actually just spotted this a few weeks ago (thankfully) because I haven’t had a fireplace until we moved to Portland!  This one would have been another that made it into the decorating vault!

Pumpkin filled fire place!

I took both of these ideas and put my own spin on things.  I love the pumpkin filled fire place, however I didn’t want painted gourds.  We used the pumpkins we snagged at the pumpkin patch this weekend to fill our fireplace.  I also used burlap for my garland strand instead of ribbon.  I think it adds a more fall/rustic touch AND it matches the bow on my front door wreath!

Pine cones on the hearth, pumpkins in the fire place! It’s fall y’all!
Close up shot of the fireplace & garland
Up close and personal

I’m not sure if I wrote about my wreath last year.  If not, I made a wreath out of dried corn husks.  Other than the fact that my hands were sore for a week afterwards, it was a great project!  My favorite part about it is that it’s re-useable.  I pulled out my fall wreath the other day and its still looking great!  I gave it a new bow this year and had to re-wet a few of the pieces to reshape them a bit, but other than that it’s looking great!

Here she is! Awaking from winter/spring/summer slumber inside the wreath container!
TA-DA! Ready to welcome guests!

I have a few more elements left to add.  I need to photograph our porch.  It’s looking mighty fall-ish if I say so myself.  I have red/orange and yellow mums planted and a host of pumpkins on the steps.  I put my Round Top Collection pumpkins in a planter by the front door.  I love their stuff.  Mr. Fancy Pants does not.  Ha!

I purchased a runner for our dining room table made of burlap (can you tell I’m really in to burlap these days??).  It is a flat runner with a ruffle on each side.  I can’t wait to see it!  I have a few more pumpkins to spread out here and there and that may be the gist of it for this year.  I feel like the house doesn’t need as much “help” bringing in fall when it actually feels like fall outside.  Ha!  I have a few other things from last year that I probably won’t use but I’ve put out most of my decor already.  I have to ease Mr. Fancy Pants into the holiday season.  Before he knows it, Christmas decor will have thrown up all over the place.  And I do NOT hold back!

Happy Fall!

Our feature on Apartment Therapy

In the aftermath of being featured yesterday on Apartment Therapy, there are no words other than…wow.  I am not accustomed to seeing the amount of traffic I had on my blog yesterday.  I’m used to my mom, mother-in-law, and the occasional friend stopping by to read what we have going on over here. (Notice I did not mention my husband, Mr. Fancy Pants.  Because although he was the person that encouraged me to start this blog, he says my posts “have too many words” and rarely reads them all the way through).

To those of you who happened upon my blog for the first time yesterday, welcome.  I hope you enjoyed what you read.  I wish I was better at posting consistently, but I’m not.  I do this because I enjoy it.  When it becomes a chore, I take a break.  I am trying to post often now that we live in OR and most of my family and friends are far far away–mass updates on our life are one thing I will say “thank you” to the internet for.

For us, it was so mind-blowing to see our home on Apartment Therapy.  We’ve been married for three years (almost) and have lived in three different places together.  Two apartments in Austin, TX and now our house here in Portland, OR.  I think I’ll do a post someday on each of them.  It’s funny to look back at the other two and see how our style has changed…well not so much changed, it has just taken a while for our two styles to converge into something cohesive.  To our marriage, William brought neon colors and crazy shapes.  I brought a love for things that were old (and let me just clarify and say that while “vintage” is cool, “old” is not always classified as such).  Over the years, his taste has tamed a bit and mine has become more refined.  I’m not going to lie, I LOVE what happens when our minds collaborate.  Turns out we are pretty good when we mix our ideas together.  That’s the thing about marrying an artist…ideas are never in short supply.

All of that said, yesterday was a fun day for us.  So thank you to Adrienne and Apartment Therapy for that.  To see the post on their site, click here.

Sugar Pie DeSanto

Funny thing, nicknames.  I think the best ones are the ones that just come out of nowhere and stick.  That’s how one of William’s nicknames from me came about. One evening, out of nowhere, I started calling him Sugar Pie DeSantos.  I have no earthly idea why, where it came from, why I put those names together…no idea. But he just started laughing so hard and so we stuck with it.

A few months later, I googled “sugar pie desantos” to see what would come up (clearly a day I was looking for distraction at work) and turns out there was a blues singer from the 60s named Sugar Pie DeSanto.  I couldn’t believe it!  To make it EVEN better, today during my search on the internet for a “house warming” present for William, I ran across this letterpress print from Yeehaw Industries.  It is a recreated show poster from Sugar Pie DeSanto’s show at the House of Blues.  I could not believe it!  Not only was it his nickname that was such a funny joke between us, it was created and printed by Yeehaw.  I ordered it RIGHT AWAY!  I couldn’t wait 1 day to tell him about it!

Sugar Pie DeSantos print from Yeehaw Industries

Once in a while, I find the perfect gift for someone.  This one was it!  He couldn’t have been more excited and we cannot wait to see it when it arrives on Tuesday. We’re going to try and find some of her music on vinyl.  I have never heard it before but I’m very interested to hear it.  Here’s a little blurb on her–she sounds like she was a great performer.

Words on Sugar Pie from

Sugar Pie Desanto’s career began at a talent show when Johnny Otis spotted her talent (she won) and offered her a contract on the spot. She joined his revue and he nicknamed her Sugar Pie. While she is best known for hits like “I Want to Know”, which hit #4 on the R&B charts in 1960, “Soulful Dress” in 1964, and duets with Etta James on “Do I Make Myself Clear” and “In the Basement, Part 1”, she is a songwriter whose songs have been recorded by Fontella Bass, Little Milton, Minnie Riperton and The Dells. Sugar Pie has also been known to bust out free standing back-flips on stage.

See more of Yeehaw Industries’ work here.

It arrived.  And it’s perfect.  I had a minor freak out when I saw it in the hallway. The way it was packaged made it look like they had shipped me the wrong one–which would have made me so upset because I bought the last one they had!  No worries though, it’s here.  It’s lovely.  It’s awaiting a floor to grace in PDX!

Here she is in all of her glory!

Clearly would be too big for our current apartment. It fills almost our entire living room.

Up close and personal. Thank you!

Scrabble Letter pillows by shopdirtsa on Etsy (photo from shopdirtsa on Etsy)

These beauties arrived at my doorstep this week.  I ordered some “Scrabble inspired” pillows from the talented lady behind shopdirtsa.  I have had my eyes on these for a while and I finally saved enough pennies and dimes to snag them. You can, I assume, get any letter of the alphabet that you’d like.  I got the three-pillow bundle with a “W” “S” and an “&”.


I’m not exactly sure what the fabric used is but it looks like a cross between a burlap and a textured linen (so I’m not the best with fabrics…I was an International Business major) BUT I love how simplistic, rustic, yet detailed these pillowcases are.  I haven’t purchased inserts for them yet but I’ve priced out the ones I want from IKEA and I’ll pick those up sometime before the big move.

Up close and personal

Bryants love ampersands

S is for Sally

I’m planning on putting these on our guest bed in the new house in Portland town.  I’m thinking white/off white bedding, solid colored sheets, and these beautiful pillows.  I am very excited to see what it looks like.  I’d like to give a BIG thanks to shopdirtsa for her patience with me (I emailed her asking for fabric pictures) and for sharing your amazing talents with the rest of us!  Go check out all of the things she’s making on Etsy!

Considering my inconsistent posts, I imagine I haven’t posted about our big move.  Mr. Fancy Pants was accepted into Portland State’s Art and Social Practice program for graduate school. SO, come July we’re packing up the homestead and moving to Portland!  Finding a house has been a headache thus far, but we have found one that is perfect…it’s just a matter of getting it.  (long story)  Basically, it’s just a waiting game right now.  While I’m on that note, here’s the house we’re trying to rent (ISN’T SHE LOVELY!? I’m in love.)

The most beautiful house in Portland

In any case, I’m doing some serious furniture shopping in the interim.  We have lived in a 1 or 2 bedroom shoebox since we got married and own very little furniture.  So, we’re saving all of our extra pennies to purchase and/or make some new furniture to fill a house!  (expect lots of furniture posts between now and then.  Ha)

I’ve been on the lookout for some rugs for the potential new place.  We’ve had our eyes on a kilim rug and I came across this site (  This site has the most beautiful, authentic kilim rugs I’ve ever seen.  I would also have to sell our first-born child to afford one.  I fell in love with this one off of their site.

Kilim Rug from

Needless to say I cannot afford that one.  BUT fear not my friends.  This is where my affinity for online shopping comes in handy.  What we like about kilim rugs are the amazing patterns and colors.  The geometric shapes are right up William’s alley but they pull on my homemaker heart-strings too so BAM a Bryant compromise!  Just this morning I snagged the LAST ONE of these from  It was meant to be.

The rug that will find its home beneath my dining room table in PDX.

I will post more about our plans for our dining room later on, but this will be perfect paired with grey walls and the industrial/modern dining room table that Mr. Fancy Pants is building (yes, building).  In the meantime, I will be waiting for this beauty to arrive at my doorstep so that I can take it down to our storage unit to await its ride out West!  I have checked that item off of my growing “to want” list (not to be confused with a “to do” list…they are very different).

"To want" list

I have taken a decorating hiatus in the past few months.  Any of you who have decorated a home before know that it’s fun for a while and then you get to a point when it becomes a chore.  Your ideas and limitations for and with the space begin to out number your funds and that’s my clue to take a step back.  Fortunately, my breaking point came at a time when I was pretty pleased with the state of the place so I just deemed it ‘finished’.  That said, I still have a few things up my sleeves.  Namely artwork.

A few weeks ago, I was cleaning one evening and happened upon the Ovation Channel on TV(one of my new favorites).  What caught my eye about it while flipping through our guide was that the show was about Phantom of the Opera–my all time favorite musical.  It was called Behind the Mask: The Making of the Phantom of the Opera (read more here).  I, as well as William, became engrossed in this show!  I had never heard or read anything about the production and drama leading up to the debut of one of the most successful Broadway musicals of all time.  The show followed the original Broadway production, written by Andrew Lloyd Webber for his wife Sarah Brightman from the writing of the scores to casting to opening night in London’s West End in 1986.  Surprisingly, I learned that the story of the Phantom and young Christine ironically mirrored Webber and Brightman’s relationship and she was his muse in composing the score.

All of that to say, there were several interviews from Harold ‘Hal’ Prince, the director of the musical, during the show and I found him very intriguing and I soon found out why.  Immediately following Behind the Mask, there was a documentary on Harold.  I have always had a deep love and appreciation for the theater, though I will be the first to admit I don’t know that much about the major players. Clearly.  As I watched this documentary I quickly realized that Harold Prince had directed about 90% of my favorite plays and musicals.  This man is a genius.

Some of my favorites of his: Damn Yankees, West Side Story, Fiddler on the Roof, Sweeney Todd, Phantom of the Opera, Cabaret, A Little Night Music, and Follies.

In all of the interviews with Harold during his documentary, they had him positioned in front of a wall that was filled with posters from all of his productions (I’m finally getting around to my point…) which started William and I thinking.  My parents, who are also huge theater buffs, have collected a poster from all of the shows they have seen on Broadway.  They are all framed and line an entire hallway in the home that I grew up in.  I love the idea of this, however, William hates the design and artwork in half of the posters.  In the documentary, Harold was in front of the original Broadway posters whose artwork was AMAZING!  William and I decided that looking for the vintage Broadway posters would be an awesome mix of our interests.  Here are some that we are looking at to continue the decoration of our walls in our apartment:

Show Boat

Sweeney Todd The Demon Barber of Fleet Street

West Side Story

The Music Man

The Pajama Game


Fiddler on the Roof

There are more that I like better than these designs but I cannot seem to find them.  My search is about to turn to ebay though I avoid ebay like the plague.  Oh well!