This Simple Curtain Panel Can Be No-Sew

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A simple flat panel of fabric can become any style you like with how you embellish it – it can even be a no-sew project!  OK, here’s my plan, we start teaching our “better halves” the joy of sewing, and while they’re busy stitching up beautiful swags and jabots for our homes, we’re sitting in…

You Can Create a Lovely Bistro Style Awning

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Yes, it’s just like an awning for the exterior of your home, but when you use it on the inside, it really makes a statement! Wouldn’t it be great to travel to a quaint little bistro in the Mediterranean somewhere for a romantic lunch?  Well, Matt keeps insisting that you can get that very same…

Start Here for an Introduction to the World of Color

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Just imagine a world without color. It surrounds us, affects us, can change our mood, it may even be healing. Read on to find out! Matt’s biggest dream is that one of these days I’ll be perfectly satisfied with the first color I choose, and after one simple sample board, his work is complete!  Well,…

Photos Are The Perfect Accessory For Any Room

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Accessories add personality to a room, helping to make the room a reflection of its owner, and photographs are the perfect accessory to create that personal touch. Family photos are one option, but photographs can also be used to produce drama in a space. Matt and I recently saw black and white photos used to…

Things to Consider When Decorating Outdoor Spaces

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You might not think about it, but your outdoor “rooms” deserve the same time and attention you give to your indoor rooms if you want to enjoy them in the same way.  Decorating an outdoor “room” is very similar to decorating any other area of your home. You need to first determine the function of…

Make a Stylish Burlap Lamp Shade

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Burlap is a forgotten fabric that has it’s place in the home in all sorts of creative projects from table runners to lamp shades. Perhaps you have a tired lamp that could use a breath of new life. The shade may be soiled or faded and it’s making the entire lamp look like it needs…

Turn a Used Sweater into a Pillow Cover

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When a favorite sweater doesn’t fit anymore, don’t throw it away, turn it into a pillow cover and enjoy it years longer. That’s exactly what our friend Jennifer did with her baby sweaters. My Italian Grandma was a prolific knitter. For my 7 siblings and me, both of my parents, and countless others, she knitted sweaters,…

If I Can Wallpaper – You Can Wallpaper!

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I’m not a wallpapering expert, but I have wallpapered many rooms and to my knowledge, none of it ever fell off!!  So, I’m going to show you how I have been wallpapering for years, using the techniques I learned from my Grandmother oh so many years ago. The most important thing she taught me about…

Sew an Alphabet Patchwork Baby Quilt

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I’ve completed several quilts over the years but this baby quilt is one of my favorites.  I enjoy it because it goes together fairly quickly and when you machine quilt it, you can get it done months before the baby actually arrives!! This quilt is made up of 35 four inch squares with one inch sashing…

Felt Leaves Can Be Sewn into an Autumn Garland

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Felt strikes again in this simple leaf garland for fall.  This is a great project for kids to learn a little about the sewing machine too. Kids will get a kick out of putting together their own leaf garland to use draped over your curtain rods, wrapped around railings or columns, even used at the…

5 Steps to Make an Indian Corn Wreath

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Nothing says fall like indian corn with it’s beautiful texture and warm rich colors, which, by the way, you can make into a lovely seasonal wreath. When the Indian corn arrives, so has fall!  I mean pumpkins show up and you know Halloween is on the way, but Indian corn brings thoughts of the Pilgrims…

Looking for Ideas on How to Decorate a Mantel?

A moose head over the mantel - MattandShari.com

Fireplace mantels command attention in your home so what you display on and above them is critical to the design of your room.  In earlier times, the fireplace was the center of family life. That isn’t surprising, since the fireplace was the source of food, light and warmth. Times have changed, but a fireplace is…

You Can Sew These Pillows for Halloween

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Use inexpensive craft felt, buttons and thread to sew some adorable accessory pillows for the Halloween season. Halloween is a great holiday – for children of all ages!  Officially, Halloween is celebrated on October 31, but my Matt and I see no reason why the fun should be limited to a single day. It doesn’t take…

Everyone Should Learn How to Sew a Ruffled Bedskirt

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Learning to sew a ruffled bedskirt teaches you how to gather fabric, sew hems, and save money by sewing decorative items yourself!  A bed skirt can be ruffled or tailored, depending on the style of the bedroom. Also referred to as duster, dust ruffle or bed valance, bed skirts serve to finish off the bed…

How to Paint a Faux Tile Backsplash

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Tile can be expensive, but paint is easily affordable and using it you can create a fantastic backsplash that most will think is really tile!  Nothing can give your kitchen cabinets more pizzazz than a beautiful tile backsplash.  It adds color, depth and a totally customized look.  However, ceramic and glass tiles can be expensive and quite…

How to Sew Electrical Cord Covers for Lamps

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There are always functional items that get in the way of a beautifully designed room, and electrical cords are one of them. Yes, electrical cords are ugly, however, you can create easy fabric cord covers that will hide ugly cords and become a nice additional accent to the room. Use them on both table lamp…

The Log Cabin Quilt Block is a Signature Block

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The Log Cabin block is a great block to sew because it has a square in the center that can become a signature block for your quilt.  You can embroider your name and a date in it to pass on down through generations of your family. The basic make-up of the Log Cabin block is…

Learn to Sew a Mock Swag and Jabot

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It’s hard to believe that a simple flat panel, with some creative additions, can create the look andfeel of a swag and jabot. If you’re looking for an unstructured, yet dressy look for your windows, this topper just may be the answer. It takes a simple to make, lined flat panel of fabric and through the…

Quickly Create this Stunning Orchid Centerpiece

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Orchids are beautiful stems full of exotic flowers and you can submerge them in a tall vase of water for a special effect. I received a beautiful orchid for Mother’s Day this year and it reminded me of a project that Matt and I did with orchids that was just stunning. You might be able to…

How to Make Pixel Art for Creative Play

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Pixel art is fun but it is also a time to learn about right angles, squares, paint and color.  Hope you have a good time with it, we sure did! My son, as well as many kids out there, is into all sorts of gaming on the computer and with gaming systems.  Because of this,…

Beautify Your Home with Specialty Vinyl Trim Pieces

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Have you looked a vinyl siding and trim lately?  You’re sure to be surprised at how many wonderful details they offer to make your home as personalized as you like. Accessorizing is one of my favorite parts of a decorating project.  I like it because it takes a well designed and planned room from public…

Flea Market Savvy Shopper’s Survival Kit

Matt and Shari Prep for Flea Market Shopping - MattandShari.com

Just knowing to shop at flea markets makes you a savvy shopper, but do you know all the things you’ll need to survive the trip?  When I asked Matt what he thought we were going to do with all of the tools I had gathered, he thought we were going hiking and camping! I had to admit,…

6 Handy Storage Ideas for All Your Hobby Stuff

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Storage is an issue even when you don’t have a hobby, so add to that all the “stuff” needed to really get involved in your favorite pasttime and look out…”stuff” overload.  If you’ve been out shopping for storage containers, you know that the world of storage solutions has become huge.  There are plastic boxes, bins,…

Learn How to Sew Attractive Linings for Your Baskets

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Baskets require linings for several reasons, and keeping delicate items safe is one of them, along with the fact that a lining makes the basket that much more attractive! I think there’s no denying that baskets are made for storing stuff.  Sure, they can be totally decorative or even totally functional like a laundry basket,…

Let’s Turn a Guest Room into a Hobby Room

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Sometimes the entire function of a room has to change to make it work for new circumstances, so go into it open minded and with creativity!  This particular before and after is an actual functional change to the room as well as a decorative change.  These are usually pretty involved since so much of the…

Transform an Attic into a Guest Room and Office

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Walk up attic spaces are wonderful for storage but they can also be made into all the rooms you are lacking downstairs! I have never lived in a home with an attic like this home.  It had its own staircase right up to the third floor. The walls were finished, painted at least, and it…

Italian Pasta Primavera is Loaded with Vegetables

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Pasta Primavera is a wonderful way to get your Italian fix but eat your veggies too! It’s easy to make and it looks impressive when you are done. Young cooks should copy this one and keep it for when the in-laws are coming for dinner.  Pair it with really good bread from the bakery and…

Floor Standing Florals are Perfect in Corners

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If you have an empty corner you might want to try making a floor standing floral arrangement to fill it up with style. Many homes today have very high ceilings.  This poses issues with accessories because there is so much wall space it’s hard to know what to add to fill it all in.  Well,…

How to Live Large – Even in a Small Space

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Today I think we have more respect for those who can put together a functional and happy home on a much smaller footprint. Matt and I have had a relationship with Hunter Douglas shades and blinds for a very long time. They were always there for us while we taped room by room and we…

Sift Through Magazines for Unique Accessorizing Ideas

Candles in old bottles as accessories - MattandShari.com

Grab magazines, and catalogs for that matter, and look beyond the main focus of the photos to check out some of the most interesting ways to accessorize rooms. Like many of you, I receive several (times 2) magazines or catalogs in my mailbox everyday.  Of course I use them to keep a finger on the…

Start a New Hobby Making Stained Glass

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Stained glass crafting can be lucrative as well as entertaining if you find you have a knack for it. Stained glass is an art form that has been enjoyed by artisan and onlooker alike for centuries.  It’s quite a process, but if you are a crafter with patience and tough skin on your fingers, you…

Hand Painted Flowers Look Like Wallpaper

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I know it looks tedious but this painted floral design was done in layers and the finished product will amaze you!  One of the keys to successful decorating is flexibility.  Matt would agree whole heartedly, especially since he’s the one who can frequently be found climbing ladders, moving furniture, and hanging light fixtures.  While physical…

10 Seasonal Table Setting Ideas to Try

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If you have a party coming up or just want to surprise your family with a special table tonight, here are some ideas to get you started. A year has gone by and my church had its annual ladies event where we have a speaker, share appetizers, salads and desserts, and many of us offer…

Personalize Your Bath with a Home Made Shower Curtain

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In a bathroom the shower curtain is usually the inspiration piece that brings everything together so it better be one that you love.  To guarantee it, make your own!  This is probably about the fifth or sixth shower curtain I have made over the years and I’m surprised, with how easy they are, that I…

Add Pom-Poms to your Pillows as Decoration

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Fleece pillows are easy to make and when you add pom poms to them they become a fun decorative accessory. Once you know how to make a yarn pom-pom, you’ll want to make more of them!  So here’s a fun project to use your pom-poms. Yes, I had a fabric printed with flowers so the…

Learn How To Make Pom-Poms from Yarn

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Pom-poms are a fun family craft and they can be used for a variety of things besides making them into bouquets. Try adding a loop of yarn and hang then anywhere you’d hang a tassel!  Tie them to hats, purses or shoes.  Attach them to your luggage so it stands out in the crowd!  The…

Creative Shower Curtain Ideas and Details

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Don’t let your shower curtain – the main fabric in your bathroom – be boring!  Try some of these creative ideas for pumping up it’s style! You know, surprisingly enough, as simple as a shower curtain might seem, I have a lot to say about sewing a shower curtain. Yes, they are basically a flat panel…

Valentine’s Gift Ideas for Every Personality

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No two Valentine’s are the same, so why buy them all the same gift?  This list helps you select just the right gift for just the right personality.  OK, it’s time to update the list of gift ideas for Valentine’s Day this year.  And since there are so many different personalities out there, we’ll break…