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More Halloween Black Birds...

How is it possible that October is nearly over and Halloween is in 2 days? 


I feel like it's about September 3rd and I'm still 25, obviously I've fallen behind somewhere along the way. ;) 

Anywho, I'm sure you all remember my cute little Dollar Store black birds that I used on my Halloween mantel HERE.  I mean, how could you forget them, right?  wink, wink

Well, I got them some black bird friends in the form of pillows and a plate, I'm sure they really appreciate it. (they didn't even say thank you!)

I came across these pillows at where else, TJ Maxx, for super cheap and couldn't pass them up (especially since I had  a gift card, it was like they were free!) 

Don't mind that the black bird on the pillow looks more like a cute little bird than a Halloween black bird, just go with it, mmmmm-K?

One for the couch and one for my boy's favorite chair (which really I should just say it's for the floor because that's where it ends up all day long, the boys do not like mommy's froofy pillows in their favorite chair).

I also threw together this little kid friendly coffee table centerpiece using stuff I already had.  It had to be kid friendly because the coffee table is also a train table and/or race track depending on the day.  It had to be able to be knocked over wthout breaking. 

I used a simple candle pedastel and an old wreath and stuck our "electric" jack-o-lantern on it with a battery powered tea-light inside.  I removed the electric cord by unscrewing it from the bottom, easy-peasy.

I picked up the orange zebra table runner at TJ's at the end of summer for $2, I thought it would be perfect for Halloween!

I also picked up a cheap black bird plate at Hob Lob 50% off, it was $3 (and it's not even plastic!).  Since it was so cheap I can leave it low and hope the boys don't break it but if they do I'm only out $3.  Thankfully they actually are really good about not messing with my decorations, they haven't been trained not to, they just don't.  (unless it's on their favorite chair or on their race track,train table/coffee table and I'm fine with that. ;) 

We'll be enjoying this look for a few more days ...

and then my mind will be turning to...

don' say it... it can't be that time of year already...

Christmas! GASP!!

Flaunt it Friday and a Winner!

Hi friends,  I'm excited to announce the winner of The Salvaged Sparrow giveaway...

#21, Kim!  Congrats!  An email has been sent to you already. 

I will be starting a new exciting giveaway this weekend!!

Can you believe it's already party time again??? 

Giveaway Extravaganza!

Hey friends!  I'm excited to announce that over the next 5 weeks I'll be having some spectacular giveaways thanks to my amazing sponsors. 

Woo Hoo for giveaways!! 

These giveaways will include some of your favorites like:

Go to the Shutterfly home page.

picture via Shutterfly

shabby apple

Grey Cotton T-Shirt Dress
picture via Shabby Apple
And, digital scrapbooking software maker (rated #1 by amazon!):

My Memories digital scrapbooking kits and scrapbook software
Plus, a few others that I'm way excited about but it's still a secret!

To kick off the "Giveaway Extravaganza" go and sign up HERE.  You can win a fabulous print of your choice on a vintage dictionary page from my bloggy friend and sponsor, Kerrie, over at The Salvaged Sparrow

Vintage Dictionary Chairs Print - Vintage Chairs plus FREE 5x7 monogram
Are you as excited as me?!  I love giveaways (who doesn't?!?) and can't wait to share these great prizes with you!  Don't forget to sign up now and come back each week for a chance to win something awesome!

Easy Halloween Ghost Cloches... Boo!!

Happy fall weekend, friends!  Halloween is fast approaching so it is high-time I shared some of my spooky ghost cloches with you.  This was another cheap and easy decoration if you have a cloche(s) already.

These were so super easy.  I already had the cloches and pedastels so it was really inexpensive too! 

I picked up some black cardstock paper at Wal-Mart for $3.47 but I would've used black construction paper if my kiddos would've had some in their art supplies.  I already had a bag of poly-fil pillow stuffing that can also be found for about $3 bucks at Wally-World. 

I used my fancy-schmancy and cheap cutting machine, scissors.   I cut out rather sloppy looking ovals because I couldn't find a good oval to trace.

I stuck the ovals to the cloches with sticky tack but you could easily use double-sided tape.  I used my creepy fabic "table runner" from the dollar store last year and picked up some spider webs for a buck.  I already had the pumpkins too. 

I also added a silvery-grey feather wreath from Joann's Fabric that I got for 70% off.  It is so fabulous I want to hang it up all year long... going to have to think about that one.

I want to thank The Diary of Dave's Wife for giving me the inspiration for this vignette.  Ingenious!!

My ghost cloche vignette:

I think they are a scream. ;)

Flaunt it Friday 75 and a Giveaway!

Hi friends!  I am excited to re-introduce my bloggy friend Kerrie.  You've met her here before through her blog Boxers, Cleats, and Me.   She has just launched a cool little Etsy store, The Salvaged Sparrow

Click here to visit The Salvaged Sparrow

The Salvaged Sparrow has all kinds of cute stuff and the best part is that it's totally cheap!  The majority of her shop is under $10!!

Check out these great prints on vintage dictionary paper, most of them come with a FREE 5x7 monogram print too!  They are only $8, most similar prints on etsy are between $14-$20 and they don't come with a freebie monogram!  She can even personalize stuff for you!

Vintage Dictionary Bird Cage Print - Bird Cage plus FREE 5x7 monogram
I love this bird cage print!

Antique Brass Skeleton Key Beaded Necklace - 19 inch
That little bird is too cute!

Custom Wedding Anniversary Dates and Names Art on Vintage Dictionary Page
Personalized Wedding Anniversary print

Vintage Dictionary Conque Shell Print - Shell print plus FREE 5x7 monogram
Perfect for your beachy theme!
Kerrie is giving away a print from The Salvaged Sparrow to one lucky reader.  Here's how to enter.

*Go to The Salvaged Sparrow and leave a comment of which print you'd choose (mandatory)
*Follow Kerrie's blog Boxers, Cleats, and Me.
*Like Kerrie's blog on Facebook
*Follow Chic on a Shoestring Decorating

Please leave a separate comment for each entry.  Winner will be chosen by on 10/27 at noon (CST). 

Now, time to party!

Guest Posting at B and B's Nest

Hi friends!  Today I am guest posting over at my bloggy friend Laura's place, B & B's Nest.   Laura is a newer blogger and super talented!  Her furniture refinishing is just awesome !  Please go see me over there but more importantly, check out Laura and her fabulous stuff!  Click HERE to check out several of her before & afters.

One of her fab table makeovers, love the details of this one!

Halloween Mantel... is for the Birds, Take 2

Well, hello there. 

Can you believe that Halloween is 2 weeks from tomorrow?!  2 weeks!! 

It will be here before we know it which makes me a little sad.  My favorite season is just about over by the time Halloween arrives.  Boo to winter weather. 

Since fall seems to fly by and I do a lot of different decorating "stages" in order to cover all of the holidays that seem to run together, I try to make it so that some of my fall decor is interchangeable.

Wait, what am I talking about?

Here goes...

For fall I do 3 stages of decor:

First, I bust out the pumpkins and colorful leaves on September 1 or a few days after.  At that point it is usually still 90 degrees and there is no way I can even think about getting out my Halloween stuff, it's hard enough to drag out the pumpkins while I'm sweating. 

Second, I bust out the Halloween decor around the last week of September and/or first week of October. This part seems to go the fastest... I drag out the Halloween stuff and then "BAM!" it's over.

Finally, after Halloween I like to have fall leaves and pumpkins (and maybe one random turkey) out for Thanksgiving for the first couple of weeks of November.  Lately, I've been getting the Christmas decor out before Thanksgiving so we have more time to enjoy it so this part is crazy short. 

Because of all the fall decor switcheroo-ing going on, I am always looking for ways to make the fall stuff work for Halloween too and vice-versa.  Obviously,  I can't leave out spooky ghosts all season but the leaves and pumpkins go all the way to Thanksgiving.

This year I thought I'd do a big spooky mantel.  Then, when I got home from Vegas 6 days into October (my Halloween stuff will only be out 3 weeks, dang it!) and was feeling kind of lazy creative about my Halloween decorations, I realized that I could make a Halloween mantel out of my fall leaves and pumpkins.

I busted out my awesome little dollar store black birds to save the day.  The fall pumpkins and leaves mantel would become a spooky (kind of) Halloween mantel just by inserting a few black birds.  Then, when Halloween is over in 2 weeks, I take out the black birds and "Waa-La!" Thanksgiving mantel!  It's so easy!

So here it is, my repurposed Fall Mantel turns lazy Blackbird Halloween Mantel!  I was going to add fake creepy cobwebs but that would've required me to go to the store.

Last year the blackbirds saved the day for my Halloween Mantel too, check it out here!

Come back soon to see my less lazy Halloween decor. :)

Linking: Under the Table and Dreaming, Craftomaniac Monday, Metamorphisis Monday, Savvy Southern Style, DIY by Design, Blue Cricket Design

Flaunt it Friday 74

Hello party people! 

It's already time for Flaunt it Friday... Hooray!!

Also, currently One Kings Lane (online discount designer store) is offering a $15 credit just for joining their site (it's free!).  This is a great opportunity to score a $15 credit to One Kings Lane!

All you have to do is sign up, it's free and only requires your email. Then you will be the first to see all of their deals on fabulous decor, furniture, etc. Some items are pricey but they also have some really great budget friendly deals.

Click here to get your $15 credit to One Kings Lane!  Hurry before the free $15 promotion ends!!

This post was not endorsed by One Kings Lane, this is just a pretty good freebie. :)

Ok, time to party!

$15 Free Credit to One King's Lane!

This is a great opportunity to score a 15 Dollar credit to One Kings Lane! 

All you have to do is sign up, it's free and only requires your email.  Then you will be the first to see all of their deals on fabulous decor, furniture, etc.  Some items are pricey but they also have some really great deals. 

Click HERE to sign up and claim your free $15!!


Getting Rid of Worn Out Decorations

Do you ever find yourself a little sad when one of your favorite decorative items gets worn out (or am I just really weird)? 

You are probably thinking, "How do you wear out a picture on the wall??  Duh, Kate."

But I'm talking about decorative things that we use... not something going out of style, just getting worn out. 

Maybe it's your favorite comfy chair and the leather starts cracking, or maybe your sofa starts to sag in the middle, or your kitchen chair seat covers have too many stains but you just love the discontinued fabric they are covered in.  Those types of things are what I'm talking about.

I recently decided that I had to replace my kitchen rugs in front of my sink and fridge.  I've been putting it off for a good six months because I really love my polka-dot rugs.  I love what they were, now they are just gross.  They are discontinued and I can't find any similar ones to replace them.  Boo.

(FYI, sorry for the crummy pictures, I ran out of day light.)
They don't look too bad from way back here but you can see how stringy the edges are.

They are way past their prime, stringy on the edges, matted and flat on top, and the off white polka dots have taken on a dirty shade of grey that won't scrub off.  They are really looking disgusting and I held on to them for too long because I loved them when they were new, and I kept telling myself that just maybe, somehow I could scrub them and fluff them enough that they would look like new again.  (I was in denial people)

This is embarassing!  At least this is the side that is up against the cabinets but the other side isn't much better.

I could scrub and fluff these rugs 'til the cows come home (does anyone say that anymore??), they will never be pretty again.
I picked up some replacements, they look ok but they aren't living up to my polka-dots in their prime. 

First is this black trimmed jute-looking-natural-fiber material that is SO scratchy.  Like it kind of hurts scratchy. 

Hides dirt, scratches feet. 

Good thing slipper season is coming right up.

My second option has a cute pattern but is a little smaller than I would like.  There is a gap between the dishwasher and sink so I will surely be dripping water on the floor as I load the dishwasher.  Thumbs down to that.

Don't mind the price tag in the corner

Which rug do you like best?  Scratchy or Too Small??  Aren't those great options?!?  HA! :)

So tell me, what are you holding on to that you should've trashed a long time ago?  Please tell me that I am not the only one who keeps old dingy rugs for a couple months too long...

Do any of you do this or do I have a strange attachment to these dingy polka-dot rugs?

Fun Food in Vegas!

Wow!  I'm back!  I have been a very sporadic blogger over the past couple of weeks but I should be getting back to normal starting today.  Why, you ask, have I been so sporadic lately??

Well, Mr. Chic had to go to Vegas on a business trip for 17 days...

17 DAYS!! 

He rarely has to travel more than 1 night at a time for work so this seemed like an eternity.  Hats off to all of you moms with hubbys in the military overseas for months and sometimes years at a time and same to all of you single parents out there.  It's a tough gig.

Thankfully, I was able to join him on day 13 and enjoy some time sans kiddos.

Have you ever been to Vegas??  It's a crazy place and worth seeing once if you never have (but not if you're easily offended).   This was my second time there, both times we've been I was accompanying Mr. Chic on business which was nice because it's not really one of my top choices for a vacation destination, it lacks one of my main vacation necessities, a beach.
I thought I'd share some of the highlights of our trip for those of you that have never been to Vegas (and others of you that are just nosy. :)

So what's the deal with Vegas??  Well, for non-gamblers like me (I do not count playing penny slots to be gambling) it's all about food, poolside lounging and  taking in all of the design/decor of the hotels, restaurants, and some of the best people watching, ever.

Let's start with food.  (Don't worry, I'm not going tell you about every meal I had, just a few of the standouts.)

My favorite meal we had at a place called Hash House a Go Go,  from the outside it looked like it used to be a Long Horn Steakhouse.   But I didn't go for the atmosphere, I went for the food.  They have an amazing and creative (and delicious) menu.  Their shtick is "twisted farm food".  They serve HUGE-MONGOUS portions on plates platters big enough for your Thanksgiving turkey. 

We split Sage Fried Chicken and Waffles...

Have I ever mentioned that I love fried chicken and I love waffles?  Now you know my secret.  I've been wanting to try this combo for a  long time but it isn't something they serve in the Midwest (and I'm not brave enough to make it on my own.)  This meal did not disappoint, it was outstanding! 

After eating this I decided that fried chicken should always be served with real maple syrup, even if no waffles are involved.  (don't judge, just try it).   I forgot to mention that there were strips of bacon cooked in the waffles... just heavenly.

We made the mistake of ordering a side dish (like we'd be able to eat it, HA!).  I'm not sure what it was called but it was cheesy bacon potatoes, sounds simple enough but it was completely delicious, even though I only could manage a few bites of it.   I think the waiter said they put the cheese on the griddle... mmmmm... cheese.

We also ate at The Sugar Factory in the Paris Hotel.  I didn't know anything about it before eating their but apparently it is a popular joint for celebrities and they are known for their "couture candy"... especially these
blinged up "couture pops".

I think this is kind of a lame idea.  What are you going to do with your blinged out sucker stick after you eat the sucker??  Ummm, throw it in the garbage.  Ok, then.

Anyway, the food was decent and we had a great time eating outside watching the fountains at the Bellagio across the street.  This was our view...

This was also a great place for people watching.  Oh my, you see it all in Vegas....

For dessert I ordered a chocolate cupcake with white frosting, kind of boring but I know this is Mr. Chic's favorite combo and we were sharing. 

It was decorated cute for Halloween but unfortunately did not taste good.  I think it was old, the cake was all dry and crumbly and the frosting was a bit yellowed on top like it had been sitting out for a long time.  We were disappointed but would definitely try one again, think we just got a bad one.

After we finished dinner we wandered through their candy store where I spotted the cupcake case.

 Aren't those fondant ghost cupcakes the cutest thing?!  All the cupcakes look pretty and delicious (if only they tasted as good as they look!).   

Here are a few views of the inside of The Sugar Factory. Very chic... 
Inside the "Chocolate Lounge", love those cozy booths!  picture via Sugar Factory
Inside the dining room, set up a bit like the Cheesecake Factory but fancier, picture via Sugar Factory 

Inside the candy shop, bling pops galore! picture via Sugar Factory

We ate at some other great places but these 2 were worth sharing.  I''ll be back soon with more Vegas fun and sharing some Halloween decorations of my own. 

PS:  I finally started my upholstered headboard!!  Will be sharing asap. Sorry it's taking so long, I know you've been losing sleep over it ;)

Flaunt it Friday 73 and Introducing Sutton Place Designs!

Hey hey friends!! Sorry I have been MIA for the past week. I was on a fun trip with Mr. Chic which I will share more about in the near future. :)

Before we party I am so excited to introduce you to my newest sponsor, Sutton Place Designs. Ann sews beautiful pillow covers, pillows, Christmas Stockings (it will be here before we know it!) and lots of other lovelies found in her Etsy shop.

Here are a few of my faves from Sutton Place Designs...

I am a sucker for ruffles!

The Linen Collection, 20 x 20 Pillow Cover, 100% Pre-washed Linen, Mother of Pearl Vintage button closure, Cream
Crisp and clean white looks great with anything!

Apple Green Christmas Stocking Cuffed Ribbon Hanger Lined 16 in. longApple Green Christmas Stocking Cuffed Ribbon Hanger Lined 16 in. long
Darling apple green stocking reverses to burlap... LOVE!!

Check out Sutton Place Designs here for more cuteness!
Ok,  now let's party so I can see all the cool stuff I missed this week. :)

Chic on a Shoestring Decorating
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Meet Abbe from Brown Apples

Hey friends! I'm so excited for you guys to meet my good bloggy friend
Abbe from Brown Apples who is kindly guest posting for me. You guys will love her!
Take it away Abbe!

Happy Fall friends!
I am so excited to share some repurposed ideas for you fall decorating.
I am even more excited that my sweet blog friend, Kate asked me to do it.
I am pretty proud of Miss Kate, and her awesome blog- I was on Flaunt it Friday when she just started, I think there were like 20 of us?! Now look out!
But mostly I am excited to get back into the wonderful world of blog sharing- don't you you just love all the great ideas you get from here?!?!
I am a huge advocate of using what you have- and if you don't have much to spend on the rest, nothing should stop you from warming up your home!!

My fall decor this year cost under $13.00!
That's right friends, 13 buck-a-roos!

This post is picture heavy- so keep scrolling, they keep coming!
I love this bird house. It holds leaves in the fall, nested in the middle a warm flam less candle.
These large leaves are fabric and from the Dollar Tree. I love them!
Wreaths aren't just for the front doors. Add one to a collage of decor and keep it well "rounded"!
( I crack myself up! Speaking of cracks, keep reading.)
I use candles in the fireplace in the fall. I love the warm glow they bring, without the heat of the fire.

The star of this years decorations are these old books turned pumpkins.
Keep scrolling... they are everywhere!

Half of a yard of burlap: 2.00
Small stencils: 1.50
I had black paint
Felt decals (Hobby Lobby) 3.00 for 2 packs.

I sewed jute rope across the top and hung across the mantel.
For the love of Burlap!! So cute.
The garland is also Dollar Tree. I used 2 strands.
Do the math. Yes- 2.00!

Here's the fab pumpkin again. The little guy on top is a cheap plastic pumpkin decoupaged with the scraps from the big pumpkin, after he was cut out.
I layered the heights of the pumpkins with candle sticks. These were .50 cents from a garage sale, originally brass, spray painted black, then distressed a bit with fine sand paper on the edges.
(Think how cute this would be at Christmas too with different sized large ornament balls?!)

This is the entry way table. Again, the wreath isn't on the door! I made the arrangement out of clearance flowers, and painted a ceramic pumpkin that was broken and in a "free" box at a garage sale.

Who cares about a little crack? You've got argyle!

Welcome to the front porch.
These reprposed pumpkins look great just about anywhere.

Repurpose your watering can and throw some fall stems in there:

Moral of the story- a 10 cent yellowed paper back book can become a pumpkin.
Broken and old decor can become new with a bit of paint.
I have wasted many hours of my life having "decor envy."
I have found more joy and more fun in creating new looks out of old things. 
I challenge you to look at that "junk" in the basement in a new way and see what you can come up with!
And once you do.... come back to "Flaunt it on Friday!"
Happy Harvest Homemaking!

{My decor blog is just starting and I would love some bloggy support!}
 {For Abbe's brutal honesty about motherhood and faith visit her blog here.} 
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