DIY Neutral Fall Wreath DIY Neutral Fall Wreath

I don’t know if it’s because I’m crossing over into the 25-34 age group this month, but I’ve been feeling especially crafty lately! You know you’re getting older when you spend hours looking at DIY projects on Pinterest…

Anywho, I’ve had a thing for wreaths lately. Our apartment doesn’t leave much space to decorate as much as I’d like, but wreaths are something everyone can have to add a little curb appeal. The first thing that used to pop in my mind when I thought of the word “wreath” was Christmas. Wreaths to me always meant circular evergreen foliage, but boy was I wrong. You can make a wreath for any season, and I just so happened to roll up my sleeves and make myself a fall one this year. Ok, it didn’t take much sleeve-rolling as the one I made was reeeeally simple, but shhhh! No one has to know ;).

Basically, I took a trip to Michael’s over the weekend and picked up the following:

  1. 14″ Grapevine Wreath
  2. 5 artificial Hydrangea flower stems (3 brown, 2 white)
  3. Pre-made bow (You can pick out ribbon to make your own bow if you prefer – I just didn’t want any extra ribbon laying around I knew I wouldn’t be using. Plus I’m a dreadful bow maker…)

After I cut down the stems to about 2-3″ using garden shears, I arranged them in an arc and stuck them through the grapevine. No glue, no tape, no floral wire. I attached the bow and just like that it was ready to hang on the door! Easy, right? Boring door no more!

I liked the hydrangeas because they’re fluffy and ridiculous, and also because I loved the neutral cream and brown tones. Knowing I wanted part of the grapevine to show as well, I only bought enough to partially cover the wreath. It’s definitely far from a spectacular floral arrangement, but it’s simple, pretty, and enough to keep me happy for the time being! The cost can’t be beat, either. They were having great sales and I got to use a coupon on top of that, so I ended up only spending $16 for all of the supplies! Pretty sweet if you ask me.

This was a really fun, simple project – I think I’m going to like this crossover ;).

DIY Neutral Fall Wreath

Paper Anniversary Gift Ideas

It’s crazy to think that my husband, Cameron, and I have been married for almost one year! (It’s even crazier to think I was in the midst of planning a wedding at this time last year…) Upon doing a little research, I found that the first anniversary gift theme is paper. My initial thought was: Paper?! But don’t worry, it isn’t as daunting as it sounds – it can actually be simple and fun! In fact, I’ll make it even easier: here is a list of six paper anniversary gift ideas.

  1. Notebook/Sketchbook
    If your spouse is a creative type, a notebook or sketchbook is a great gift idea. Speaking from experience as a creative, you can never have too many. Moleskine makes great, high-quality notebooks, so be sure to check them out. Throw in some shiny new artist pens along with it and you’ve put together the perfect gift!
  2. Tickets to an Event
    The stars have truly aligned if your anniversary lines up with an event your partner has been dying to go to. Save the stubs and have them framed to commemorate your first anniversary together!
  3. Photo Album
    If you never ordered (or made) an actual printed book of your wedding photos, now is the time! Print is starting to seem obsolete (especially when it comes to photos), but there will always be something special about looking through a printed photo album. Having them in a tangible form is not something you want to miss out on! If you already have a photo album of your wedding, it could be cute to create an album consisting of photos you’ve taken throughout your relationship. My husband and I started dating in high school, so it’s fun to look back at our baby faces!
  4. A Handwritten Letter
    When money is an issue, you can’t go wrong with a sweet and thoughtful handwritten note. We don’t always take the time to let our spouses know how much we appreciate them, but a handwritten letter will do just that. Leave it somewhere they can easily find it, and it will surely brighten their day!
  5. Books
    Books are a great gift idea since they cover a wide variety of topics. Cookbooks, fiction, poetry, self-help…there is truly something out there for everyone. 
  6. Art
    Last but not least is art! There are so many talented artists on Etsy and Society6 that make beautiful prints; the hardest part will be restraining yourself from buying all the pretty things. If you’re looking for a more custom gift, you can find someone to draw up something special for you. I’ve seen people get illustrated portraits of themselves with their pets/children, and they turn out really great!

Hopefully this blog post gave you some ideas if you were stuck on what to get your spouse for your paper anniversary. If you have other suggestions for paper gifts, let me know in the comments – I would love to know!

Paper Anniversary Gift Ideas

The Benefits of Alone Time
Shirt & cami – H&M | Shorts – American Eagle | Sunglasses – Lulus | Shoes – Red Dress Boutique

It seems up until recently, being introverted was viewed as a negative quality. Humans, by nature, are social creatures and it seems to go against the natural order to want to be alone. In reality, however, there is much to gain by giving yourself some quiet time, introverted or not.

The Benefits of Alone Time

Spending time alone is not a new concept for me. While my childhood friends spent their summers away at camp or on vacation, I spent mine drawing, building small websites, filming embarrassing skits on my camcorder, or playing video games. While this may seem like a lonely life to some, I actually thoroughly enjoyed it. I truly believe the alone time spent as a child shaped me into the person I am today because it allowed my imagination to run wild. Creativity is not something that is taught but rather accumulated by experiences. The whimsical, childlike freedom gave me a space to harbor the creativity that allows me to be successful in my career as an adult. If you’re ever feeling a mental block coming on, spending some time alone may be just the thing you need to get the creativity flowing again.

The Benefits of Alone Time

A moment of solitude can also be beneficial if you’re feeling stressed. There were times in high school and college where I would simply lay in the dark doing nothing but listening to music. The peace helped me destress and take my mind off things that were happening at the moment. Something about escaping into your own world helps you forget about the ever-unraveling list of things that need to be done.

The Benefits of Alone Time

Lastly, spending time alone helps you discover your interests. I noticed how much I loved working on computers – I spent much of my free time growing up teaching myself how to code or creating illustrations and animations. It was after a couple high school web design classes when I finally said: “Hey, this is pretty cool. I should turn this into a career.” And that’s exactly what happened. Spending a lot of time alone can get boring, and as a result you will find ways to entertain yourself. What you choose to do with your time can really help you discover a lot about yourself, especially if you’re actively exploring your interests.

The Benefits of Alone Time

Though spending time alone comes easily to me because I am introverted, I do believe everyone can benefit from some level of solitude. This doesn’t mean isolating yourself from everyone around you, but it does mean giving yourself space when you need it. A little peace and quiet can play an integral part in rejuvenating the soul.