Holiday Decor

2012: Bring It!

Saturday, December 31st, 2011

Today is the day, the very last of 2011.  We will say our farewells to this year tonight with friends, sharing in some sweet desserts, champagne, and a few rounds of high stakes poker at our place. OK, not high stakes, more like free chips on the house for auld lang syne, but it will be very fun and someone will be declared the Annual Poker Champion sometime after midnight while the wee ones slumber into the night having fallen asleep on the fold out sofa in front of a movie.

for auld lang syne

2011 has been quite a year, and I can honestly say, one of my favorites if not most favorite ever. The ability to create, build, and write about what I love is a dream come true for me, and the list of people to thank who have made it possible is a mile long so I shall save it for more personal correspondence. 

But I cannot say goodbye to 2011 without publicly thanking all of you who visit and subscribe, who link and comment, who tweet and share your projects and stories with me. It means more than you know when you connect with me the way you do, whether it’s on Facebook, through link parties or comments, or in private emails. I cannot get enough of a marvelous DIY project, great makeover, or stylish creation and witnessing all the amazingness that is out there among this talented DIY and home decorating community literally keeps me up at night. I look forward to continuing this crazy fun blogging journey in the new year with all of you and I can assure you it brings much excitement!   diy pink party horns for matthew mead

 

So tonight let’s toast to all of the success, health, happiness, and harmony that 2012 will bring to us all.  To kick off the new year, I’m excited to be a part of this great series starting on Monday featuring some of your favorite bloggers.

 

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The Blog Hop will begin on Monday at Nester’s place and the five of us mentioned will be sharing our insight through the week on topics from monetization to photography to finding balance. The series continues on Tuesday with Sarah, Wednesday with Jen, Thursday with Marian, and Friday with me, I know you’ll love it! 

Wishing you all very Happy New Year !!

xo, kate signature image

 

 

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Holiday Bokeh!

Sunday, December 25th, 2011

Hello everyone and a very Merry Christmas to you!  Santa came a few days early for me bringing a new lens (Nikon 50 mm 1.8, thanks Santa!) and just in time to capture some holiday bokeh.  I’ve never been able to photograph those beautiful orbs that come from twinkle lights in the background until this week, so I’m very excited! 

holiday bokeh twinkle lights

 

All of the images below were taken with the subject about 8 to 10 feet away from the twinkle lights with the lens mentioned above. I opened up the aperture as wide as it could go in the afternoon and evening and slightly less in the morning due to the brighter daylight, resulting in some pretty bokeh shots!  Camera settings below.

Morning:

reindeer snow globe bokeh

F-stop: 2.8       Shutter Speed: 1/160      ISO: 800

 

Afternoon: 

christmas tree bokeh centsational girl

F-Stop: 1.8     Shutter Speed 1/25      ISO 800

 

Evening:

nighttime bokeh silver bulbs

F-stop  1.8    Shutter Speed 1/15      ISO 1600  

 

So so pretty, I love me some twinkle light bokeh!!!

Here are three more sources for tips on taking great holiday bokeh shots before your tree comes down:

I Heart Faces

My Three Boybarians

Kevin and Amanda

 

Wishing all of you the best day filled with all the merriment and magic of Christmas! 

xo,

kate signature image

 

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25 Christmas Craft Party Highlights

Thursday, December 22nd, 2011

Oh hello. I was just browsing the links at the Holiday Craft Party from last week, and all I can say is Wow.  I mean seriously. There are some very creative, talented, and crafty people out there, who all happened to link up their creations last week.  And would you be shocked to hear there are 785 of them. Yeah. How crazy cool is that?  So I just couldn’t help but highlight a few. This post is kinda like a BOTB, but holiday crafty style, and here are twenty five creations you’ve just gotta see!      

Cake circles and red striped fabric come together to form these charming and inexpensive peppermint striped placemats by Heather at Commonplace Beauty.

cake circle placemats

 

Glittery string snowballs made by Kelly hang from elegant branches in a rattan vase over at View Along The Way

glittery string snowballs

 

These mini yarn wreaths by Smile Like You Mean It had me at hello, and would you guess they’re made of shower curtain rings?  For realz.  And totally genius.

mini yarn wreaths

 

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