Category Archives: DIY

Wanted Wednesday Craft Room Edition Sweet Southern Simplicity Blog

Wanted Wednesday: Craft Room Edition

24th April 2016

wanted wednesday on Sweet Southern Simplicity Blog

Welcome to Sweet Southern Simplicity’s first ever Wanted Wednesday! Every Wednesday I will be sharing product collages of things I find useful and beautiful.

Over my winter break I was able to clean out all of my craft items and give them a new home in my new craft room! So exciting! It is still a work in progress, mainly because of my budget. Regardless, it has been such a blessing and a space I know I will be spending lots of time in. Every time I am in there working on something it reminds me of the countless hours I spent in my grandmother’s craft room before she passed away. I can’t explain how special it feels to work with her sewing machine and fabric from her collection. I know she is looking down on me, beaming with pride, each time I create something (even though I am no where near her skill level 🙂 ).

So here it is, my top wanted items to spruce up my craft room..

Wanted Wednesday Craft Room Edition Sweet Southern Simplicity Blog

one // salt lamp
two // inspiring wall art
three // geometric rug
four // storage bin
five // craft storage tower

With proper budgeting and continued side hustling, I know my craft room will be beautiful and inspiring in no time!

XO – Sarah

DIY Backyard Engagement Party on a Budget

8th November 2015

Last month Jason and I were so elated to have our engagement party at his sweet grandparents’ home. We were so fortunate to have the help of Jason’s aunt, grandmother, and mother. It would not have been possible without them!

DIY Engagement Party Sweet Southern Simplicity Blog

Because I am in grad school and Jason and I are trying to get out of debt, we did not have a huge budget for this party.

We found ways to save money pretty easily through out the planning process. The first being the invitations. I went to order them on Shutterfly and was SHOCKED when my total was over $150 and the shipping date was way too close to the actual event. Luckily, UWG has a fantastic Publications and Printing service on campus and I was able to get my invitations professionally printed SAME DAY for $10. I was ecstatic about how they turned out! Perks of being a grad student, I suppose .:)

We were able to save a ton of money by having it at his grandparents’ home and having delicious homemade BBQ and sides catered by Jason’s family. Everyone that attended had wonderful things to say about the food and J and I enjoyed leftovers for days!

DIY Backyard Engagement Party | Sweet Southern Simplicity Blog

I absolutely adored the way my in laws set up the drink stations. It was so cute and functional. You can’t see it in the photo, but we had all the beers set up in buckets in an old wash stand. It was glorious! We borrowed it and a gorgeous chandelier from Jason’s aunts who love vintage and antiques even more than me (who knew it was possible?!). Jason’s other aunt made the menu out of an old window, one of my favorite elements from our party!

The most expensive aspect of our party was renting the tables and chairs. I was able to get 6 large round banquet tables and 70 natural wood folding chairs for less than $250. That’s a pretty fantastic deal! Picking up and returning the chairs and tables ourselves saved us a great deal of money. And by ourselves I mean some wonderful members of our family. Thanks Dad and Uncle Charlie for your trailers and muscles!

DIY Backyard Engagement Party | Sweet Southern Simplicity Blog

Jason and I purchased six navy blue tablecloths from Amazon, a money-saving tip I learned from my lovely friend Amberly of Wrennwood Event Design. We spent a total of $64 on them and will likely use them for our actual wedding (if we don’t elope, that is ;)). I made the centerpieces myself and spent a total of about $80 on supplies for them. I even got some of the succulents from THE DOLLAR TREE. Yeah, kind of unbelievable! I will be posting a full tutorial for these soon, so stay tuned!

DIY Backyard Engagement Party | Sweet Southern Simplicity Blog

Other table decorations included vintage books I already owned, white and gold pumpkins from the dollar section of Target, and old vodka bottles with the labels removed. I bought one bouquet of fall flowers and arranged them in each bottle vase. They had a minimal but chic feel to them and the entire bouquet only cost me $12. BONUS: After the party I put the bouquet back together and gave it to Jason’s grandmother, they were still beautiful in her kitchen over a week later!

To add a little element of goofiness we hung up an old white sheet and got some low cost  props from the Halloween section of Wal Mart. The giant cat head was definitely a hit.

DIY Backyard Engagement Party | Sweet Southern Simplicity Blog

The photo screen was not as fancy as a photo booth but I think it accomplished the same goal and only cost us around $20!

These are only a few examples of ways J and I were able to save money on the ridiculous costs of hosting an event. This sentiment could easily be applied to a wedding, shower, or other event! If you’re willing to get your hands dirty and let go of perfection DIY is the way to go!

Our party was such an awesome gathering and meant the world to us. It’s amazing what you can accomplish with the help of family and friends. There is no way Jason and I could have handled this ourselves! Thank you to everyone that attended, we love you! I promise you will get a thank you card for the gift, just let me get through a few more weeks of school!

What money-saving ideas do you have for your next event? Comment below!
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XO – Sarah
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Who, being loved, is poor? – Oscar Wilde

Free Independence Day Printables

2nd July 2015

I LOVE THE 4TH OF JULY. It’s always been one of my favorite holidays. Growing up, my family had an annual reunion that was always on Independence Day weekend. I’ve remembered it fondly ever since.

I made some Independence Day inspired printables to help you celebrate with your own family & friends.

Independence Day Printables on Sweet Southern Simplicity Blog

I truly hope you enjoy these printables. I’m no graphic designer but I’m thrilled with how these turned out!

Happy Independence Day Free Printable on Sweet Southern Simplicity Blog

  Land of the free because of the brave printable on Sweet Southern Simplicity Blog

Let Freedom Ring Printable on Sweet Southern Simplicity Blog

To print simply click on the photo & download. These babies look best printed on cardstock then trimmed with a guillotine style paper cutter (if you can’t cut straight lines like me). Show me how you display your printable on Facebook!

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“Where liberty dwells, there is my country.”
— Benjamin Franklin

My Favorite DIY Chalk Paint (So Far)

31st May 2015

I love easy DIYs and I love saving money so this creation was inevitable for me. DIY Chalk Paint.

Easy DIY Chalk Paint on Sweet Southern Simplicity Blog

I found this lovely frame at my favorite thrift store, Value Village. It was pretty beaten up but I adored the shape of it and the best part.. It was .60 cents! I knew I could transform it into something lovely, the only question was how.

After thinking about it for a while I had narrowed my DIY options down to a floral decoupage or a pretty country-esque paint job. I needed something that wouldn’t take much time or additional dollars. And that’s how my favorite DIY chalk paint came to be.

I did some research on what recipes I could use and was SO elated when I found this. The author claims this was her least favorite but I absolutely loved it! I did however change up the recipe just a smidge! I do intend on trying the other recipes and reviewing them, but for now my bank account calls for the cheapie recipe.

What You’ll Need:

DIY Chalk Paint on Sweet Southern Simplicity Blog

Baking Soda + Latex Paint
(both of which I have on hand at all times which made this a VERY inexpensive DIY for me)

My favorite DIY Chalk Paint Recipe:

2 and 1/4 Parts Latex Paint (you can get small samples like the one pictured above for less than $4 at Home Depot)
3/4 Parts Baking Soda

Mix quickly thoroughly and continue to keep mixed.

Paint a few coats on your desired wood surface, wait for it to dry then sand to make smooth and distressed.

**Note** I am aware that a store bought chalk paint may be easier to work with or may end up looking better but the point of this project was not to spend $42 on ONE quart of paint.

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What do you think? Will you try your own DIY Chalk Paint?

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“Be stubborn about your goals, and flexible with your methods.”

DIY Mid Century Inspired Organization

8th May 2015

Hi lovelies! I have a maddeningly simple and easy DIY for you today. BONUS: it’s super affordable!

Jason and I are still renovating our space and once we are finished I will have a a desk with faux built ins around it. I couldn’t be more excited! I planned on buying small baskets for the shelves to organize some of my small craft items. This DIY saved me from doing that, which made my wallet very happy.

DIY Mid Century Inspired Organization

Last week at work Chef brought us some local strawberries for a yummy summer cocktail we recently started serving. I am a strawberry fanatic, so I was really excited about The Farmhouse Garden Old Fashion debuting on the drink menu. Bourbon, strawberries, mint .. yum! My excitement for the bourbon was nothing compared to my excitement for the baskets the strawberries came in though. Cute little green plastic baskets.

I loved the design of the baskets. It reminded me of a stair railing I saw in a gorgeous mid century home. I knew exactly what to do to make these babies chic! Make them gold, of course!

WHAT YOU’LL NEED

1. Plastic berry baskets
2. Gold Metallic Spray Paint (I love Krylon’s but any kind will do, I’m sure)

DIY Mid Century Inspired Organization

WHAT TO DO

1. Wash and dry plastic berry baskets thoroughly.
2. Create space to spray paint. ALWAYS spray paint outside and with a face mask. I usually lay an old sheet down to ensure that I don’t get paint anywhere it isn’t welcomed.
3. Lay each basket out and spray paint the insides. Repeat for each side on the outside.
4. Leave your baskets out to dry. I usually wait at least an hour, just to be sure!

This is one of my favorite projects because:
– It’s upcycling
– I spent NOTHING on it
– It’s SO pretty!

DIY Mid Century Inspired Organization

 

This project was free for me because I had the gold spray paint on hand and the baskets for free from work. You can get the metallic spray paint for less than $5 (at least here in GA) with a Joann’s coupon! So this project is super affordable. Plus, think of all the other things you can spray paint gold!

What will you do with your berry baskets this summer? I think these would be really cute in white, too!

XO – Sarah

Catching Flies

14th April 2015

As I have mentioned before, my sweet guy and I are currently renovating our humble abode. We are getting hardwood floors and I am finally getting a real desk. I have been waiting for this moment for years and years. I am so excited!

My desk hasn’t been put together just yet, we have a lot to do before that happens. That hasn’t stopped me from crafting up fun stuff for it when it’s complete. Pencil holders, catch all dishes, and printables! I had to stick to my roots with my latest creation. And of course, I had to share the love!

Free Printable from Sweet Southern Simplicity

Download your sweet southern printable FREE here!
(Printable looks best when printed on cardstock)

Do you ever say something and your mother comes out? Happens to me allll the time. I don’t mind, my momma is a smart, strong woman. And a true southern lady, at that. She could provide me with a good old southern “proverb” for any occasion.

My favorites are the ones with a good lesson. I remember one of the first times my momma said “you catch more flies with honey” to me. I was very young and I thought about it for a while. When I finally understood what she meant, I was impressed with myself and inspired. I have since used the phrase constantly and have tried my best to put it into practice in my everyday life. Mama is right, you do catch more flies with honey. But dang if it isn’t hard to be sweet in all situations!

Here’s to trying our best, ladies! Enjoy the printable 🙂

XO – Sarah

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“The South: Where love, family, and tradition are the sugar in our tea.”

My First Booth

6th April 2015

Little Lake Vintage had its first booth this weekend! The Farmhouse Pasture sale was a blast! I am so grateful for the experience and completely humbled by how many people bought my handmade pieces. I was really not expecting that!  As an added bonus I met so many amazing people, got to spend time with some people I really love, and got new plants and earrings! I don’t know if you can tell, but this may have been one of my favorite weekends to date!

Little Lake Vintage Booth

Little Lake Vintage Booth

Little Lake Vintage Booth

One of the best parts of the weekend for me was getting to see other people’s work. There was so much talent all around, it was truly inspiring.

PollyOpal Studios

That right there is my newest cherry tomato plant from PollyOpal Studios. I am so excited for this! Cherry tomatoes were my first love. I used to take a bite of every single one my mother grew, right off the vine, when I was a child. I’m really hoping my beau takes good care of it while I’m in Pittsburgh next week!

FlowerChildWeddings

Pictured above are the earrings I will likely wear everyday for the rest of my life! Seriously crushing on Flower Child Weddings and the PeaceLoveShoppe.

Little Lake Vintage Booth

This may have been the first booth for LLV but it most certainly will not be the last. I am looking forward to many more! I will be adding new items to my handmade selection for the next one.

What kind of things would you like to see? Let me know in the comments below!

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“The meaning of life is to find your gift. The purpose of life is to give it away.”
– William Shakespeare

Exciting Stuff at Little Lake Vintage

25th March 2015

I have been working nonstop on my teeny tiny business, Little Lake Vintage. I haven’t even made a significant profit from it (yet) but I never ever grow tired of it. I have been dreaming of running a vintage shop for the past 10 or so years and I am finally just freakin’ doing it and it brings me so much joy.

Yesterday I decided LLV deserved a makeover and I rebranded everything. I am head over heels for my new logo, I can’t wait to see it printed on my new cards!

Little Lake Vintage Logo on Sweet Southern Simplicity

What do you think?! I’ve been told it captures my essence well 🙂

Floral Letters / Monogram by Little Lake Vintage on Sweet Southern Simplicity

In other LLV news, I am currently taking orders for custom faux floral letters (like the ones above). I can do any letter, any size up to 3 ft in just about any color. If you are interested in ordering one for your home, wedding, or photoshoot please shoot me an email at littlelakevintage@gmail.com. The pricing is based on letter size and flower choice (if you have a preference), to give you an idea letters under 10″ are around $15 a piece and letters in the 2-3ft range are $35.

And just in case you didn’t know, Little Lake Vintage, the booth, will be at the Farmhouse Pasture Sale in Newnan, GA on April 3-4. If you are near the area you should definitely stop by, I will have a free gift for anyone that gives me instagram love! Details on that one are happening next week 🙂

Other than that life has been plenty busy with working my normal job(s), renovating with Jason, watching a lot of The Office reruns, and crafts. Life is so good.

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If you have good thoughts they will shine out of your face like sunbeams and you will always look lovely.
– Roald Dahl

Lately

19th March 2015

I haven’t posted in a while, I’ve been crazy, crazy busy! It’s a good busy, though. This is what I’ve been up to according to my Instagram 🙂

Wall Art on Sweet Southern Simplicity

My vintage shop, Little Lake Vintage, will be at The Farmhouse Pasture Sale in Newnan, GA on Aril 3rd and 4th. I’ve been working on handmade wall art that will be available for purchase there.

Home Improvement on Sweet Southern Simplicity

My guy and I have been painting up a storm. We are lightening up our basement with Glidden’s Ethereal Blue, it’s the perfect combination of blue and gray and I can’t wait to see what it will look like with our new hardwood floors!

Welcome Spring - Sweet Southern Simplicity  Selfie - Sweet Southern Simplicity

It’s FINALLY warming up here in Georgia, and I couldn’t be more excited! Hello skirts, shorts, and dresses -I’ve missed you!

Georgia Magnets on Sweet Southern Simplicity

I have also been painting a lot and making some extra cute magnets for my booth at the Farmhouse Pasture Sale. I just love magnets, I can’t wait to share more with you soon!

And finally… I have been celebrating because I GOT INTO GRAD SCHOOL! I also got my first choice of graduate assistantships, working in the Admissions Office! I am so looking forward to August and I am so thankful I was selected for the program.

I am really loving this time in my life and I am so grateful for everything going on. It’s insanity sometimes, but it’s incredible.

What are you grateful for lately? Let me know in the comments below.
xo – Sarah

How To Repot and Care For Succulents

25th February 2015

Does anyone else dread winter as much as I do? I despise it. Extra layers, frozen windshields, and the overall gloominess just bring me down. Nothing makes me more sad than going outside and seeing the trees stripped of their leaves, pots without flowers, and hydrangeas no where in site. I need to see some life! So today I decided to tend to my sweet little succulents.

HowToCareForSucculents Sweet Southern Simplicity

I have had some precious succulents sitting idly by, waiting to be repotted for a while now. I, of course, have not had the time or motivation to do anything with them lately (luckily they are the most chill plants ever and aren’t super needy).

I painted three traditional terra-cotta pots in an ombre fashion; one white, one gray, and one black. As the saying goes, everything looks better in black and white. I believe it. The gorgeous greens of my succulents look awesome against the hues of their new homes. See!

Succulents on Sweet Southern Simplicity

Succulents are my favorite plants and they are so so easy to care for. Anyone can have a lovely succulent garden or plant. I picked these beauties up from Home Depot, where they were being frozen to death in the garden section of the store. They are relatively inexpensive which is always a plus.

How To Repot Succulents:

– When you are putting your new succulents into new pots be sure to place a few small rocks in the bottom of the new pot for drainage.

– Although the information on the tag of most of my succulents says to use normal potting soil, it is probably best to use a cacti or succulent mix.

– Add soil on top of your layer of rocks, making sure to leave a hole to place your new plant into.

– Very gently loosen the soil on the roots of your new plant after carefully getting it out of its original pot.

– Place plant into the hole you left for it and surround with soil so that the plant is snug in its new home.

– Give your plant a little bit of water to help it settle into its new soil.

How To Care For Succulents:

– Place your succulents in a place where they will be exposed to natural sunlight.

– Do not water your plant until the soil is completely dry.

– Water very sparingly, some say only 4 times a year! I just feel the soil and give it a small amount of water when the soil is completely dry.