Hola, friends, and happy weekend to you! Early this week I mentioned that I was going to be traveling for business starting on Wednesday and now the cat is out of the bag. For the last couple of days Ami and I have been in Mexico at the amazing El Dorado Casitas Royale. We’re here through today and we travel back home tomorrow so it has been a very quick trip, but one full of amazing food and new friends. I’ll be sharing all the details from our trip in the next week or two, but in the meantime I just wanted to check in and wish you all a fabulous weekend. I’ve been doing my best to be a good little blogger and share little snippets here and there over on Instagram, so be sure to follow along! Today we’re off to do a little swimming with dolphins, which is something I’ve never done and I’m so excited. I hope you all had an amazing week – see you here on Monday! xoxo
[Photo by Cyd Converse on Instagram.]
There’s no denying that leather is a huge trend in fashion this fall. (Or faux leather if you want to keep it animal-friendly!) I find myself loving the way a cool leather jacket can edge up an outfit, without putting off that biker vibe I know known of us are after. Pair it with a really feminine dress and a pair of boots and the look is just so fun. Or top tailored leather pants with a bright colorblock sweater or a cozy sweatshirt. Either way, I’m looking the look and loving leather for fall. I definitely think I need to invest in a great leather jacket this season!
[Leather fashion | 1: Glamour | 2: Kendi Everyday | 3: Wendy's Lookbook.]
You guys should know by now that I’m big fan of the growing Friendsgiving trend. A couple of years ago I shared my own Friendsgiving dinner and last year it was this Friendsgiving spread that had us all feeling inspired to show our friends a little love. Well this year we’re keeping the tradition rolling with this warm and inviting outdoor Friendsgiving celebration shared by Bottle Pop Party Company. Planned as a beautiful yet casual gathering of friends, this Friendsgiving dinner pulls everything together with beautiful flowers and sweet little details like take out containers for bringing home leftovers, a chalkboard menu and shots shared in little mason jar glasses.
Designed to celebrate all the best parts of the Thanksgiving season (namely friends, food and fire pits) this Friendsgiving celebration is gorgeous but it was also created with keeping costs down. The Bottle Pop Party Company team painted a piece of inexpensive barn wood to create a big, rustic table that fits a crowd. Lots of fresh produce, like artichokes, kale and brussels sprouts made for inexpensive seasonal decor. Finally, a big batch of apple cider sangria was the perfect drink while everyone warmed up by the fire. Yum! It looks like so much fun, doesn’t it? I think we should all try to make a point to get together with our friends this holiday season. Even if you don’t have time to pull together a full blown dinner, I think cocktails and a chilly evening spent by a campfire will do the trick nicely.
Mason jar shot glasses from Paper Source
I’m Thankful For cards from Paper Source
Cutlery pockets from Cutlery Couture
Event design + styling by Bottle Pop Party Company | Photography by Mergliano Photography | Florals by Fresh Designs Florist
[Photos by Mergliano Photography.]
This post was sponsored by Air Wick. Thank you for supporting the sponsors that so
generously help The Sweetest Occasion keep on keepin’ on!
Guys, I am literally clap-my-hands excited to share this DIY project with you today! (Yup, clap-my-hands excited is a real level of excitement in my world.) Dreamed up as a part of my holiday collaboration with Air Wick (designed to bring you six amazing homemade holiday projects), this DIY wooden candle centerpiece was completely inspired by Air Wick’s Baked Apple Strudel Candle. As soon as I started brainstorming ideas, I had a vision for an awesome centerpiece featuring distressed lumber that would serve as the ultimate tabletop focal point. Inspired by the candle’s notes of cinnamon and apples, I kept thinking of warm and cozy holiday gatherings with something yummy baking in the oven and loads of flickering candlelight. Because in my world, that’s what the holiday months are all about!
With the fragrance and rich red color of the Baked Apple Strudel candle in mind, I set off to create the prettiest DIY wooden candle centerpiece. I have to say, while it took a little bit of time and occasionally I found having B’s extra set of hands very helpful, it was overall a very simple project that came together just as I had envisioned. It’s a really fun and special piece that will instantly jazz up your holiday home decor and, dare I say, I think it’d make an amazing homemade holiday gift for the candle lover in your life, too!
- Reclaimed lumber or untreated wooden fence post
- Drill with self-feed drill bit
- Tape measure
- Stain + staining cloths
- Latex gloves
I will share with you that my initial vision for this project utilized a piece of reclaimed lumber, but after sorting through my father’s heap of old lumber and boards I came up empty handed. (Namely because I had a pretty specific size and scale in mind for this piece!) So it was off to Home Depot, where I purchased a 4×4 untreated fence post and requested that it be cut into 3′ lengths. (Tip: Most home improvement stores will cut wood to length for free – just ask! Also, be sure your fence post is untreated as the pressure treated kind has a funky color that will be hard to work with when you get to staining later.) For the size of my table, I wanted my candle centerpiece to end up 3′ long, but you can adjust the length to fit your home.
Next up, determine where you want your candles to start along the centerpiece. I used a tape measure, square and pencil to mark the placement of each candle, leaving 3″ on either end of the candleholder. To determine the placement and spacing, I lined up a row of candles along the top and decided that seven candles was going to be the perfect number of candles for my 3′ length of lumber.
Make a mark along your lumber where the center of each candle will rest. Then it’s time to start drilling! I used a self-feed drill bit with a 2-1/2″ diameter (this one although I found it locally for quite a bit cheaper) because the bottom of the candle measures just over 2″ across. Yes, we’re using power tools for this, but, no, it’s not hard to do! Use your self-feed drill bit to cut a hole where each candle will rest along the centerpiece. You don’t have to cut very much, just go deep enough for the candle to have a little divot to sit in. It’s ok if the holes are a little rough around the edges as it lends to the distressed look we’re going for with this project. Of course, when using power tools be sure you’re taking the proper safety precautions! Safety first, friends.
Next up, it’s time to talk about distressing the lumber! This is ridiculously simple. You’ve probably seen it before, but I’ve never done it, so I kind of feared it might not be as easy as people make it sound. No worries – it really is that easy! Just take your hammer and begin knocking small dents into the wood, being sure to cover all three sides that will be visible when the centerpiece is in use. You can really use whatever you want to to achieve the desired look, just have fun and don’t over think the distressing process.
Now we’re onto stain! I used Minwax in Dark Walnut, but you can use whatever you have if you happen to have some left from another project. Just one coat, applied liberally with a lint-free cloth will get the job done! Be sure to wear gloves because stain will definitely do a number on your manicure if you get it on your hands. Rub the stain with a pretty heavy hand into the wood and then allow it to dry completely. I found one coat did the trick and I skipped any kind of sealer or poly coat because I wanted it to have an older, time worn look without any sheen.
And there you have it! A really awesome (even if I do say so myself) wooden candle centerpiece that will be the star of all your holiday celebrations this year. I love the idea of using it on your dining room table or lighting it up along your coffee table and serving dessert and coffee from a comfy seat instead of at the formal table. The best part is, this piece will look amazing all holiday season long and well afterward, so you can enjoy it for a long time to come. Mine has a permanent home on our dining room table and I doubt it’s going anywhere anytime soon – I seriously love how it turned out!
[Design + styling by Cyd Converse for The Sweetest Occasion. | Photos by Alice G. Patterson.]
4×4 wooden fence post from Home Depot
Dessert plates by Heath Ceramics
Flatware is vintage
Napkins from Christmas Tree Shops
Berry basket from Garnish
Nail polish is Sunset Kiss by JulieG
Baked Apple Strudel candles by Air Wick
This post is a collaboration with Air Wick. For more homemade holiday ideas, follow along on Facebook! Read more about our editorial policies.
So, remember this summer when I sort of declared that yellow is one of my least favorite colors and then went on to post more yellow color palettes than ever before? Mark my words, we may have the same thing happen here. See, I’m not a huge fan of red colors, specifically anything even resembling maroon or burgundy. But do you see what I’ve done here? I’ve called this garnet and I’ve paired it with a rich dusty plum and now I love this color combination. Kind of the perfect color palette for fall, don’t you think? I should note that it snowed here overnight so these warm, cozy colors are just what I need this morning. That and coffee. Lots and lots of coffee.
[Photos, from top: Anastasiya Belk Photography | Iain Bagwell via Design You Trust | Lani Elias Fine Art Photography from Once Wed.]