Thursday, July 30, 2015

The Cabbage Curtains: 5 Inexpensive Window Treatments

I have plenty of ideas about how I would decorate The Cabbage should I ever win the lottery but since that hasn't happened yet, I often have to work within a pretty tight budget.  I may occasionally splurge on a luxury item but that usually means I have to make up for the expense in some other way.  One place where I have always managed to save a good amount of money is on window treatments.  Here are five examples:

1. Altered Lace

Altered Lace Cafe Curtains In Our Dining Room

In our home gallery and the adjacent dining room combined, we have five windows, so I really needed an inexpensive solution.  I also didn't want anything too heavy that would block the light or take away from our beautiful original windows.  I was able to find some really affordable lace cafe curtains but they were a little plain.  Fortunately, around that time I wandered into one of my favorite import stores and fell in love with some fabulous scarves.  Using a little creativity and some fusible sewing tape I was able to combine the two to create some one of a kind curtains that didn't break the bank.

Altered Lace Curtains In Our Home Gallery

2. A Tale Of Two Scarves

Ombre Scarves Serve As Curtains In Our Bedroom

Falling in love with scarves is not a rare occurrence for me.  Most of the time I do plan on wearing them but when I saw a pair of pink and purple ombre scarves at my local Target (affiliate link), I knew they would make perfect curtains in our bedroom.  Not only were they inexpensive but they required almost no effort to hang.  All I had to do was drape them over my existing curtain rod.

3. Hooked On Fabric

Easy, Inexpensive Curtain In Our Master Bathroom

I looked everywhere for a curtain for my remodeled master bathroom before finally stumbling upon a three dollar fabric remnant that turned out to be the perfect complement to my new decor.  All I had to do was trim it with some sewing scissors and hook it onto some drapery rings to install it.

4.  Wall To Wall Savings

A Full Wall Of Curtains In Our Guest Room Helps Disguise Off Center Windows

I knew I wanted wall to wall curtains in our guest room but was afraid I wouldn't be able to afford them.  As it turned out, luck was on my side.  First I found the double drapery rod in the clearance section of my local home improvement store.  Then Target had an amazing sale on curtains (affiliate link).  The blue faux silk curtains really add a luxurious feel to the room while the sheer panels allow plenty of natural light to shine through.

5. 0 Curtains = $0

Having No Curtains In My Art Studio Allows The Light And The Woodwork To Shine

After having the plumbing installed to add a sink to my art studio, there wasn't a whole lot of budget left for decorating.  I had to get really creative with furniture and accessories but when it came to window treatments, the solution was simple: I didn't want any!  Not only did this save me money but it allows me to fully enjoy the light and the views while I'm painting. 

Springtime View From My Art Studio

Have you come up with some creative, cost saving window treatments in your home?  Feel free to share in the comments at the bottom of this page.

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

7 Things That Make Our Home Magical

7 Things That Make Our Home Magical - The Cabbage Blog

Home ownership can be challenging.  It seems like there is always something around here that needs cleaning, fixing or improving.  Sometimes Hippie and I just don't have the time or energy to get to any of it much less all of it.  However, just because our home will never be perfect doesn't mean it can't always be magical.

Here are seven things that add magic to our home and our lives on a daily basis:

1. Lighting

7 Things That Make Our Home Magical - The Cabbage Blog
This brass hanging pendant casts magical shadows in our guest room.

I am a big fan of chandeliers, pendants, candlelight, string lights and lamps and use all of them to set a magical mood in our home.  Most of our overhead lighting is on dimmer switches so I can make it brighter if I need to for reading or some other activity or keep it low if I haven't gotten around to the dusting for a few days.

2. Books

7 Things That Make Our Home Magical - The Cabbage Blog
My collection of Arthurian books flanked by magical dragon bookends.

Of course, I love to read books but they are also among my favorite home accessories.  Not only do they add color and typography to a room but they contain and symbolize wisdom, adventure and possibilities.  If that's not magical, I don't know what is.

3. Flowers

7 Things That Make Our Home Magical - The Cabbage Blog
An arrangement of summer blooms from my garden brings the outdoors
into our home.

One of the easiest ways for me to add a little magic to any room in our home is to simply borrow some from our garden.  The beauty, color and scent of flowers always has the power to brighten my day.

4. Art

7 Things That Make Our Home Magical - The Cabbage Blog
A small art collection featuring works by Molly Harrison, Amy Brown, Kelly Rae Roberts,
Mary Claire, Melody Lea Lamb
and Abby Sernoff.

Whether it is my creation or someone else's, I have always used art in my home to tell a story of hope, courage and resilience.  Even when my house or my life is a bit messy, art has a magical way of getting me to look at the brighter side of life.

5. Music

7 Things That Make Our Home Magical - The Cabbage Blog
Music Is Magic

Every now and then Hippie and I let the dirty dishes pile up in the sink, delay putting away our laundry or leave the bed unmade. However, we never go a day without listening to some good music so that makes us and our home magically awesome. :) 

6. Cats

7 Things That Make Our Home Magical - The Cabbage Blog
Our cats Bart and Blackie enjoying the window seat in our dining room.

Being owned by cats means we have scratches on our woodwork and we spend a lot of time vacuuming cat hair off of floors and furniture.  However, through the magic of their beauty, affection and supreme confidence they have convinced us that they're worth it and they are. 

7. Love

7 Things That Make Our Home Magical - The Cabbage Blog
My latest chalkboard mural.

Hippie and I both believe that there is no more powerful magic than love.  So as long as our home reflects what we love and comfortably accommodates who we love, it will always be a magical place to live.

I would love to know what makes your home magical.  Please feel free to share your thoughts by commenting on this post.

Thursday, July 16, 2015

The Cabbage Garden Tour

The Cabbage Garden Entrance

Our main garden here at The Cabbage is always going to be a work in progress.  Mostly due to nature's seasons and cycles but also through our own efforts, it is constantly changing and evolving.  So this garden tour is a journey through some of those changes.

Before we can visit The Cabbage Garden, however, we have to stop off at The Cabbage Garden Shed so I can pick up my gloves and some pruning shears because there is always weeding or trimming to do.

The Cabbage Garden Shed Exterior

I spruced up the exterior of The Cabbage Garden Shed last Summer, click here for full story and more photos.

The Cabbage Garden Shed Interior

The interior of the garden shed was redecorated in 2012.  Click here to see before and after photos.

Okay, now on to the garden.  One of the best places to get a full view of it is from the outside of the fence just behind the garden shed.  Here's a couple photos from that vantage point in Spring:

The Cabbage Garden In Spring

Clematis and Ballerina Roses are among many flowers that bloom here in Springtime.

Click here to see more photos of The Cabbage Garden In Spring.

Of course, there are a lot of different places to explore and visit within the garden walls.  One of my favorite things to do in Summer is sit on our garden bench or tree swing and watch the bees, butterflies, birds and other wildlife enjoy our flowers and trees.

Our Garden Bench In Summer

The Cabbage Garden Tree Swing

The Cabbage Garden is also a lovely place to visit in Autumn:

The Cabbage Garden Entrance In Autumn

I even venture out for a visit now and then in the winter (click here for photos).

And even though it is a lot of work, it is often difficult to leave.

Portal Back To Reality

I hope you enjoyed this tour of The Cabbage Garden.  For a complete list of archived posts about our yard and gardens, click here.

Thursday, July 2, 2015

6 Ways To Attract Good Fairies To Your Garden

Post updated 4/20/2017

6 Ways To Attract Good Fairies To Your Garden - The Cabbage Blog

If you have a garden and you want it to be magical and free of evil fairies, I highly recommend befriending some Good Fairies. However, this isn't always an easy task.  Most Good Fairies that I know of don't have cell phones or Facebook pages, so it requires a little effort and creativity to make their acquaintance.  Here's six methods that I have found effective for attracting Good Fairies (and other magical creatures) to my garden:

1. Make A Place For Them

The Cabbage Fairy Garden (Click here to learn more)

Every Good Fairy needs a good home.  It doesn't have to be elaborate (though that doesn't hurt).  Just make sure you dedicate a special place just for them, even if it is just a simple flower pot or a tree stump.

2. Charm Them With Flowers

6 Ways To Attract Good Fairies To Your Garden - The Cabbage Blog
The delicate bloom of a Sweet Alyssum draws the attention of this Good Fairy.

Everyone loves flowers and Good Fairies are no exception.  They are attracted by all varieties of blooms but including some low growing, smaller plants just for them is always a good idea.

3. Use Your Imagination

6 Ways To Attract Good Fairies To Your Garden - The Cabbage Blog
A Tiny Mermaid Fairy Sleeps In The Mermaid Tree

Good Fairies come in many fashions and forms and not all of them are obvious or logical.  So make sure you keep your mind open to all possibilities and your eyes open to all the beauty around you.

4. Practice Stillness

The Fairy Meditation Garden On The Cabbage Deck

You won't attract Good Fairies if you are too busy to notice them or benefit from their magic.  This is just one of many reasons you should allow yourself some time in your garden for rest and contemplation.  

5. Be Kind

6 Ways To Attract Good Fairies To Your Garden - The Cabbage Blog
Fairy Good Advice

Showing kindness, empathy and compassion for other people, animals, our environment and ourselves not only scores big points with Good Fairies but also makes the world a more magical place for everyone.

6. Work Hard

6 Ways To Attract Good Fairies To Your Garden - The Cabbage Blog
True Story (Apron Available At My Cabagelow Creations Shop)

This is great gardening advice a wise Garden Gnome named Shaun Cassidy gave me (click here for full story).  The real magic of hard work is that not only does it attract Good Fairies but, once they show up, you will be so energized by their presence that the work will no longer seem so hard.  You may even start to think of some of your toughest gardening tasks as enjoyable!

So there you have it, six surefire ways to attract Good Fairies and good energy to your garden. Happy gardening and thanks for stopping by!