How To: No Sew Pillow Cases

[sourc:www.jandofabrics.com]

 

New year, new beginnings, right? Correct! It may be a little too early for Spring cleaning, but who’s to say your home doesn’t need some freshening up? Not all of us have the budget to completely redecorate our homes for the new year, but there are are few tricks to add a breath of fresh air to your living space. One of our favorites is the No Sew Pillow Case. Yes, you read correctly, “no sew.” What could be better than that? If you’re sewing machine challenged just as we are, this DIY is right up your alley!

What you will need:

  • Standard throw pillow (preferably without any embellishments) 
  • A piece of fabric 3 times as wide plus a few more inches and twice as tall plus a few more inches as the pillow
  • Pinking shears

Steps

Use pinking shears to cut the fabric to avoid fraying.

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Start by folding the bottom half of the fabric to the center of the pillow.

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Then fold the top down to the center.

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Fold the edges of each end as if you’re wrapping a present.

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Bring one side over the top of the pillow. Repeat for the opposite side.

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Tie the ends in a square knot. To tie a square knot you take the fabric over-under then under-over.

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Voila!!

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Images courtesy of organizeyourstuffnow.com.

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How To: Decorate on a Budget

The holidays can be tight on ones wallet. From entertaining guests, to buying gifts, to getting the entire family dressed for the reason, sometimes there’s not enough left to spend on getting your house ready for the hoards of guests that will be taking over your home. Here are some foolproof and Totsy approved ideas that will go easy on your wallet, but look like you hired Martha Stewart to decorate your home. 

For you wine lovers:

  • Don’t throw away those empty wine bottles, reuse them as decoration. Spray paint them in various colors (coordinating with the holiday) and place them around the house among candles and other festive items.
  • You can even use the wine bottles for candle holders.

Put the Kids to Work:

  • Have the kids collect pine cones and leaves in the yard (good way to have them clean the yard as well!) to be used in centerpieces or mixed among your other decorations.
  • Remember the spray paint you used for the wine bottles? Add some color to the pine cones to make them more festive and coordinate with your theme. You can even use ribbon.
  • Leaves also look great on the dining table, especially has a runner. Get more life out of them by spraying starch (the same one you use to iron clothes) to help retain their shape.
  • Be sure to wash the leaves and lay them flat to dry before using.
  • Take your kids pumpkin picking, but get the smaller ones to be used on the table or in vases. Add leaves for an added touch.
  • Have your kids collect twigs of varying heights (make sure their are no creepy crawlers) and use larger vases to create a floor display. Add faux cranberries to the base to keep the twigs stable.

Dollar Store Finds

  • Dollar store candles and tea lights are the most inexpensive way to illuminate your home. You can decorate larger candles with ribbon or glitter by using a spray on adhesive.
  • Float tea lights in wine glasses with cranberries or use a large decorative bowl to flow multiple candles with leaves and cranberries.
  • Pick up a few bags of potpourri to liven up the senses, or make your own with cinnamon sticks, cloves, star anise, dried orange peels, nutmeg, and any other spices you care for.

A Few Other Tips

  • Vary the height and size of your serving pieces. Incorporate footed compotes, trifle bowls, cake stands, and stacks of dessert plates to add dimension and visual interest to your entertaining surface.
  • Use fruits such as apples and pears as name card bases. Pin names to the fruit using needles with decorative heads. Super quick and easy!

Hope these tips make your home as festive as possible. Happy Holidays!

Yuri & Sophie’s Weekend Picks

Happy Friday!  It’s time to wrap up HOME month with some great items from Totsy’s home sale.  Some items up to 70% off!!!  Here are Yuri and Sophie’s Weekend Picks.

Pearhead:  Love love love Pearhead!  It’s a great way to document the growth of your child in a creative way.  This Happy-Sad Frame set is the cutest thing ever!  Insert a happy and sad photo of your child and I guarantee it will be a conversation starter.  Wonderful price of $8.99!!!! http://bit.ly/h0bM78

Dynamic Rugs: These beautiful and vibrant rugs are perfect for any playroom or nursery.  Personally, I love the flower-shaped ones. This Flower Rug will add a splash of color to any room.  This rug starts at $30! http://bit.ly/e4I1s8

CHF Industries: This is Yucki Yogi. He is a hamper and he collapses.  Keep this in the corner of your child’s room and he/she won’t have any problems throwing in their dirty laundry.  Yucki Yogi is only $10!! Love it! http://bit.ly/grawrT

Just Born: Nothing welcomes a newborn like a soft, comfy blanket! Just Born is known for their durable, easy-to-care, and original products. We love this Animal Adventure Blanket in Green. The animal details are sure to make your baby smile! $8.99 on Totsy – http://bit.ly/e5bgDn

MK & Company: Tuck in your little girl with this beautiful Music Box. Not only does it play soothing music, but it doubles as a jewelry box – how adorable! MK & Company offers hand-crafted décor that adds whimsy to any room, collect them all! $15.50 on Totsy – http://bit.ly/fH7Fgl

Aacua by Maaman: Maaman has been dedicated to delivering modern, innovative and safe products for your children. This Aacua 4-in-1 Towel is a multifunctional towel, apron, swaddler and bathrobe – how cool is that?! This item is a must-have for bath time, the material is not only super-soft, but it’s very absorbent, no mess! $22.80 on Totsy –  http://bit.ly/gyLdEe

Enjoy your weekend!

How To: Personalize Your Home

Make your home yours.  Your home should reflect your personality and/or your history and there are many ways you can give your home an authentic feel.  Check out some of our tips below on how to personalize your own home.

Framed photographs are a great way to accent your home and give it that personalized feel.  For a simple, clean look, try using simple black frames or frameless photo frames.  You can hang sepia or black and white photographs to keep the entire look simple.  If you like frames with a lot of intricate details, try a variety of different frames and hang them in a grouping in one section of the room.  This will give the room a cozy feel.  If you have children, hanging framed artwork is a great way to display your child’s creative talents as well as make a great conversation starter.  For more tips on hanging pictures, visit: http://www.diynetwork.com/decorating/tips-for-hanging-pictures/index.html.

  • Frames with intricate details grouped together on one side of the room creates a cozy and artsy feel
  • Frame children’s artwork in a simple photo frame so it does not draw attention away from your child’s masterpiece

 

Ceramic bowls, vases and other pottery items are another great way to add more personality to your home.  Ceramic bowls (or any kind of large decorative bowl) are great as a centerpiece for coffee tables, dining room tables as well as the kitchen countertop.  They’re also useful pieces of art as they can hold fruits or a collection of snacks for guests.  Try visiting your local pottery store for pieces by local artists.  They’ll see their work being displayed and feel proud, while at the same time, it adds an interesting touch to your home.  Vases can be filled with fresh flowers, silk flowers or left alone as a piece of art all its own.  Find a vase that fits the rest of the décor in your home.  If you have earth-toned furniture and classical tastes, get a simple, unobtrusive vase.  If you have a home with furniture that contains antiques and detailing from a certain time period, get a vase that will coincide with the rest of your furniture.

  • Support local artists by buying local pottery items
  • Children’s clay artwork make great pieces on a shelf or mantle
  • Pottery pieces should coincide with theme of your room

 

Books are also a great home decorating accessory.  There’s a reason the term “coffee table book” was created.  One interior designer uses large coffee table books stacked high next to a reading chair because it “looks casual and warm”.  Like a framed picture of your child’s artwork, coffee table books are also great conversation starters.  They are usually a large book containing a lot of photographs and illustrations.  Having a bookshelf with a variety of different books in your living room, home office or den can create a quaint and cozy room.

  • Different genres of coffee table books will surely satisfy all kinds guests
  • Cover one wall of your room with a floor-to-ceiling bookcase and fill it with a variety of books

Rugs and accent pillows/throws are another great way to personalize your home.  They also add a comforting touch to your room.  Go with rugs that fit into the color scheme of your room. Choose easy-to-clean and warm fabrics such as cotton or flannel.  With accent pillows, make sure there is a pillow cover so that it is easy to wash when Fido or Little Ben has an accident.

  • If your room is filled with neutral colors, accent pillows and throws can be colorful – try deep, rich colors like burgundy or navy blue
  • A good rule of thumb for selecting the colors of your throw pillows is to match the color scheme of your décor. If you have one or two main colors in your color scheme, you can buy throw pillows in both colors or choose one color to highlight as an accent.

Lastly, you should have fun when decorating your home.  It shouldn’t feel like a chore.  Be creative and just keep these few simple tips in mind and you’ll have your home reflecting your own personal style in no time.  Enjoy!

Totsy HOME Giveaway!

At Totsy, we know the home is where the heart is. It’s not about the house itself, but it’s about those family moments that turn your house into a home.

We are always looking for inspirations on ways to personalize our own spaces to make them comfortable and create happy memories for our families. These books are amazing references and offer some great advice and tips on how to decorate, accessorize, and furnish!

Set 1 

Set 2 

Set 3

Totsy will be selecting THREE winners for this giveaway. Each winner will receive THREE fabulous home décor books! Here are the contest rules:

Required Entries

Answer the following question in the Comments section: What’s your favorite room in your home and why?

Must be a Totsy member

Fan us on Facebook & Twitter

Extra Entries

Tweet this giveaway using hashtag: #totsygiveaway

Follow our blog on Tumblr (if you have a Tumblr account)

** Giveaway will begin at 12 pm EST on January 21st and run until 12 am EST on January 30th. Winner will be announced on Monday, January 31st.

** One entry per person please