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A Giveaway: $50 to At Home (closed)

2 Dec

When At Home, formerly known as Garden Ridge, contacted me as asked me if I would be interested in partnering with them to do a giveaway, my answer was a swift and resounding “YES!” I have to admit, I love their new branding. I feel like it is more in line with what they actually offer in-store. While their outdoor selection is large, their accent furniture and decorative accessories are my favorite.

This weekend, my mother-in-law, my husband and I braved the weekend shopping crowds in order to purchase 45 feet of garland and all the bulbs and floral picks to go with it. You can’t beat one-stop-shopping during the holiday season! At Home also has Christmas trees in every color, shape and size. Neon orange? Hot pink? White? Traditional green? They’ve got it. I am tempted to return for a mini purple tree to deck out in TCU ornaments for my office.


Beyond their Christmas section, I really can’t get over their selection of garden stools. I’ve never seen a better (or better priced) selection of garden stools, which are perfect for extra seating or a small side table indoors or out.


One lucky reader will win a $50 gift card to At Home. Click the link below to enter. Come back daily for additional entries. The contest ends a 12:00am on December 9th.

Click Here to Enter

Disclaimer: At Home supplied the gift card for the giveaway. All images and written words are my own.No compensation was received in exchange for my opinion.


DIY Campaign-Style Frames

28 Mar

If you haven’t noticed, I dig inexpensive wall art (see free Prade Marfa printables here and $2 Marbled artwork here). While I would love to collect a few museum-worthy pieces, my financial priorities just don’t lie in art right now.

Ikea is my go-to for frames, but I’ve been wanting to “hack” my dining room frames lately. I opted to avoid the trendy campaign-style makeover for my nightstands, but still have a secret love affair with brass corner brackets.

In the spirit of inexpensive art, I give you upcycled campaign-style frames.

DIY Campaign Style Frames

Continue reading

Uchi Inspired Chopstick Holders

21 Mar

Forgive my absence for the second Tuesday in a row. This week, my husband told me I wasn’t allowed to blog “work” because of my birthday.

I got spoiled rotten for my birthday this year. This has truly been the birthday that never ends.

On Monday night, my husband took me to not one, but two, restaurants I have been wanting to try in Austin: Uchi for dinner, and Qui for dessert.

Which brings me to the easiest dinner party DIY. Don’t you love simple brilliance?

One piece of paper (2×3.5 in.)

One medium circle hole punch

One pair of chopsticks

Uchi Inspired Chopstick Holders

You can make this easy, disposable, chopstick holder using any plain or patterned cardstock, to match any color scheme. You can write your guests names on them in calligraphy, or stamp, emboss, or print them.

Easy as birthday cake.

Thanks for reading,

♥ Dominique

Free Printable Prada Marfa Watercolour Art

28 Feb

When you aren’t inspired enough to paint over every beige room in your home, cover them with art!

Well, that is what I am doing, since I have not committed to paint colors. I also don’t feel like dedicating months worth of weekends to painting all but three rooms in my abode right now.

Free Printable #PradaMarfa Watercolor Art

After hearing about the new app, Waterlogue, I quickly decided to purchase the app, which is currently only available for iPhones and iPads, and transform my favorite photo of Prada Marfa from our recent trip out west. Here is what I found: if you start with a high quality photo, you get good results. Lower quality photos don’t create desirable results.

Free Printable Watercolor Prada Marfa Print

I also waterlogued a photo of Big Tex from our engagement session.

Free Printable Watercolor Art

I put each 11×17 print in 20×28 RIBBA frames from Ikea, cut new mats from posterboard, and hung the prints in my dining room.

I love my new, inexpensive wall art and have decided to make the Prada Marfa print available to my faithful blog readers. When I took the files to FedEx Office, they said the image should print clearly as large as 18×20. Since the original Big Tex image was taken professionally, I thought it best if I not share that one. Who besides us wants a print of a creepy, giant cowboy anyway?

Click HERE to download the Prada Marfa print.

Thanks for reading,

♥ Dominique

Good Day Austin | DIY Wedding Invitations

25 Feb



I had a great time with Good Day Austin’s Anchor, Lauren Petrowski, talking about DIYing wedding invitations for their Make It Monday segment. I was thrilled to have the opportunity and am excited about the possibility of being a guest on the morning show again within the next few months.
FOX 7 | Good Day Austin: Make it Monday | DIY Wedding Invitations


The image above may be deceiving, as you can’t actually press the play button. Unfortunately doesn’t support FOX 7 videos. You can watch the video by visiting Good Day Austin’s website here: DIY Invitations.

The three minute segment really flew by, so be sure to check out my  six tips for DIYing your wedding invitation suite.

Thanks for reading and, now, watching,

♥ Dominique

Ticket Stubs + Fillable Lamps

11 Feb

Last week I found out the lamps on our nightstands that had been bugging me also bothered my husband. That sounds like a justifiable excuse to go shopping for home goods if I ever heard one!

For me, it was that the scale was all wrong. As was the style. For him, they just didn’t function well enough. In his words the lampshades were too low (he would often accidentally bump them) and the lamps were wobbly. You can see our old scissor-arm lamps in our bedroom here.

I like the scissor-arms, but the lamps were a little puny. They didn’t draw the eye up to our tall ceilings, faux canopy, giant, bright blue P, or do anything to help our space feel put together. Even though they were smaller than our new lamps, they made the nightstands feel more cluttered.

If you’ve followed my blog for any length of time, I’m sure you’ve learned I like decor with stories. So, as the title suggests, I give you: Ticket Stub Filled Lamps!

Ticket Stub Filled Lamps

Anthony and I have ticket stubs from the first day we met at the State Fair of Texas. We continued to collect out ticket stubs and had stored them in a small glass shadow box, which was quickly getting filled. Transferring the tickets to the lamps was a joyful game of Remember When.

Ballgames, Presidential Libraries, museums, movies, and more, memories of the adventures we’ve had, our new lamps store.

I love seeing tokens of our happy memories before I go to sleep each night. Beyond adding tickets from yet-to-be-had adventures, I can change out the tickets for seasonal decor. During the fall I can fill them with gilded acorns, and at Christmastime, ornaments or old string-light bulbs.

Ticket Stubs + Fillable Lamps filled our lamps with 3D glasses from when we went to see the Rockettes at Radio City, with the number we took when waiting in line to get our marriage license, with tickets to Oz with Orchestra I bought to celebrate my mom’s birthday, and Fitz and the Tantrums tickets I won on the radio. Atop our nightstands are souvenirs like our ACL wristbands, and badges for our annual Oscar Movie Marathon. The lamps are filled with VIP lanyards from the Austin Ice Cream Festival I helped plan and SeaPasses from our honeymoon cruise. They house tickets to the Colosseum in Rome, Sagrada Familia in Spain, and hotel key cards from our trip to Toronto.

Each time I change out the contents of the lamps, I take another walk down memory

Thanks for reading,

♥ Dominique

Sources: Lamps

This post is linked at Tatertots & Jello.

Clay Conversation Hearts

31 Jan

I’m sure you remember those chalky conversation hearts you got for Valentine’s day back in elementary school. The sayings were sweet, but the taste was anything but. I made an equally inedible version for February fourteenth.

DIY Conversation Hearts

I made party picks out of mine, but these little clay hearts can take a thousand different forms. Forgo the toothpicks and you can use them for many Valentine’s projects.

DIY Conversation Hearts #valentines

Here are a few other ideas:

  • Put a handful in a small muslin bag to give to your Valentine
  • Poke holes in the sides of the hearts before baking them and add a small length of chain to make decanter tags for your bar cart
  • Make a Valentine’s day necklace
  • Poke a hole near the top-center, add an ornament hook and put them on a Valentine’s tree
  • String them together to make a garland
  • Use them as placecards for a dinner party
  • Make tags for wine glasses

Here’s the how-to:

DIY Conversation Hearts #valentines

You’ll need:

  • Polymer clay
  • A rolling pin
  • A small heart-shaped cookie cutter
  • Small alphabet stamps (I used metal stamps I had, but the dollar section at Michaels has small letter rubber stamps)
  • An oven
  • Pastel paints
  • A paintbrush
  • A thin red Sharpie


Roll out your clay to about 1/4 inch thickness. Use your cookie cutter to cut as many hearts as you desire. Stamp them with lovey messages. I chose Be Mine, Wink Wink, Love You, Kiss Me, BFF, Me & You, XOXO and URAQT. Bake your hearts at 275°F for approximately 20 minutes. Once they cool, paint them, let dry, and retrace the messages with a red pen.

DIY Conversation Hearts #valentines

If you’re looking for more Valentine’s Day inspiration, take a look at my February Pinterest board.

Thanks for reading,


DIY Nutcracker Stocking Holders

17 Dec

I hope you’re following along with the 12 Days of Christmas Cookies, my online cookie swap. We’re halfway today and Lindsay at The Well-Styled Child is making Pizzelles!

When I saw these bare wooden nutcrackers at the craft store in October, an idea struck me. I’d come back for them, closer to Christmastime, and make stocking holders out of them.

Wooden NutcrackersWhat I envisioned was a more modern version of these:

Horchow Nutcracker Stocking HoldersWhen I went back to pick up my nutcrackers, they were out. I waited for a new shipment that never came. I ended up buying a couple of nutcrackers at the dollar store in hopes they’d work for my project. Here is what they looked like before.

Dollar Store Nutcrackers BeforeWith just a little bit of glue holding them in place, their hair and beards were easy to remove. I sanded them down just to rough them up so the paint would stick. I also purchased some basic stocking holders which one can find at places like Hobby Lobby, Home Depot, or Walmart, and sanded them too. Next, I used glue and stuck the nutcrackers to the sanded bases. I chose to give mine a couple of thin coats of silver spray paint, but you can choose whatever color best matches your Christmas decor.

DIY Nutcracker Stocking HoldersAt less than 10% of the cost of the gold nutcracker stocking holders pictured above, nothing would complete the look quite like our knit thrift store stockings!

Anthropologie Holiday Display Workshop: Corrugated Cardboard Garland

5 Nov

First things first, the winner of the KM Little Somethings Giveaway, chosen by is Katy!

Last month I went to a holiday display workshop at Anthropologie. I wanted to share the garland I made, but thought October was to early for too many Christmas posts. The garlands are simple to replicate. They have a pinecone quality.

Anthropologie Holiday Display Workshop Garland Tutorial

I love Anthropologie windows and displays. I especially love how most of them are handcrafted at each individual store making them all unique. Did you know they donate many of their displays to charity or auction them off and donate the proceeds? What they don’t donate, they try to reuse and re-purpose.

Now on with making or Christmas trees as chic as their stores!

DIY Anthropologie Christmas Garland

To make the cardboard festoons, start but cutting out corrugated cardboard into shapes like the ones seen below.

Anthropologie Holiday Display Workshop Garland 2013 www.gustoandgraceblog.comNext, hot glue two paperclips to the widest part of each piece of cardboard so a small metal loop hangs off each edge. Roll the cardboard tightly, hot gluing in the middle, and when you reach the end. Use Rub ‘n Buff  to give the bauble a golden glow. Apply a small amount of glue in one or two places on each piece of rolled cardboard. Cover the glue with gold or bronze  leafing. Use a small, dry paintbrush to form the leafing to the cardboard. I love the green and red tones you get from the bronze leafing.

Anthropologie Garland Tutorial  Bronze Leafing

Use paperclips to attach the baubles together, then trim the tree!

Anthropologie Holiday Display Workshop Garland Tutorial

See? So simple! Let me know if you try it!

Painting Mini Gravy Boats

29 Oct

This year, there will be no mention of Halloween celebrations for me. No passing out candy to trick-or-treaters and no costumes (admittedly I’ve only dressed up once in my life). This Friday I’m coordinating the wedding of a long time friend, so Thursday’s celebrating will be of love and marriage.

Before I write off the last few days of October, I’m going to re-cap Crocktoberfest. Theming my cooking this month was fun. Getting acquainted with my extra-hot crockpot has been an adventure of its own. Here are the slow-cooker recipes I shared on the blog this month: Yucatan Braised Short Ribs with Chipotle-Cheddar Mashed PotatoesGreen Chile Macaroni and Cheese, Chicken Tomatillo Soup,  and Pumpkin Bread.

As October comes to a close, I am thinking Thanksgiving. I love any reason to entertain. I have had tablescapes, menus, and decor on my mind. Anthony and I will be hosting our first married Thanksgiving for any family that will come. I am excited.

I found the first piece of the Thanksgiving puzzle at Target, mini gravy boats, but they weren’t quite right. Here’s what they looked like when I bought them.

Mini Gravy Boats

It’s not a secret that I love miniature things and dishes for single servings. I like the boats how they are, but while they are perfectly fall, they don’t match anything in our kitchen and are just a little bit too Texas A&M for this home. I wished they were more neutral so I can use them year round. I am thinking chocolate sauce for ice cream sandwich stacks, dressing for salads, and strawberry or caramel sauce for cheesecake.

I wished they were more neutral, so I made them that way. And here is what they look like when I got through with them.

Painting Ceramics: Rose Gold Handled Mini Gravy Boats

For just over $1, I bought a small bottle of Martha Stewart Craft Paint in Rose Gold. I simply painted it on the handles and baked the boats for 30 minutes at 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Baking the paint onto the ceramics will cure the paint and make it dishwasher safe. If you’re painting glass or ceramics, place them in the cool oven, let them pre-heat with the oven, and once it reaches 350 degrees, start your timer for 30 minutes. After 30 minutes has passed, turn off the oven let your painted pieces come back to room temperature while remaining in the oven. This can take several hours. Martha Stewart advises not to paint any surface that will come in contact with food. While to paint is non-toxic, it is not FDA approved as food-safe. She also advises waiting 72 hours after baking before use.

Share some of your Thanksgiving traditions!

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