DIY Faux Wallpaper Using A Pencil!

I’ve been dying to add some texture to the wall behind my bed, but wanted it to be subtle.  I didn’t want to paint it, and I had already tried a sponge technique on the other side of the room.  I found this wallpaper at Anthropologie that I really liked, and I thought, why not draw it?

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So I grabbed a pencil, a level, turned on some Etta James, and got to work.

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I had this 48-inch level and this 12 inch level left over from when I did my DIY sharpie subway tile and used them.  I honestly don’t know how I decided, but I landed on doing 12″ x 18″ rectangles.  I simply grabbed a pencil and started drawing.

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I can tell you, I made way more mistakes in the beginning, and then when I got the hang of it, I used the eraser WAY less.  This is what I did for ONE rectangle:

  1. Draw an 18″ vertical line
  2. Added another right next to it (see pic, I didn’t use measurements I eyeballed and it’s not perfect)
  3. Created a space of about an inch
  4. Draw another two 18″ vertical lines
  5. Draw a 12″ horizontal line
  6. Added another right next to it (see pic, I didn’t use measurements I eyeballed and it’s not perfect)
  7. Created a space of about an inch
  8. Draw another two 12″ horizontal lines

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What made each of the “stripes” beautiful, are the details of the two thinner lines on each side–don’t skip out on those!

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I then erased in a circular motion in the middle to get that washed out look–like the Anthropologie wallpaper had.  You can see there are tons of imperfections, so don’t beat yourself up over them–at least I don’t.  Because overall, when you look at the entire wall, it will look great…

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You can see a closer look on video here–just scroll through my “highlight” to get to the part where I do this DIY.

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I like the subtle look, but you can always darken the lines with a paint pen if you prefer–and probably better if you are in a high traffic area.  I’m not so concerned with the pencil lines because it’s behind my bed where no one walks by it or touches it.  If you want to try this somewhere that you’re worried about smudges, maybe try a paint pen.  However, for my space, I was going for subtle.

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As always, please DM me on Instagram if you try this or have questions!  And please, sign up for my email updates below.  I promise I won’t spam you.  We can be best buds.

Love,

Deema

 

 

 

 

 

 

A Simple (and free) DIY To Create Some Seriously Cute Kid’s Art

We’ve all been stuck at home during this quarantine and while I can still online shop, there is nothing like a good trip to the thrift store.  If I had to pick the one thing I miss most about thrift stores, it would hands down be the art.  And while I can’t leave the house, I decided to get creative.

If you’ve been following me on Instagram, you know that I’ve had the kids draw/paint pictures that I framed and hung up in their bedroom.

img_4816Well, yesterday I did an impulse DIY and I LOVEEEEE how it turned out–I decided to take some old kid’s books, tear out some of the pages, and frame them.  Below are the deets:

Step 1:  Grab all the old frames I had in the house and put them in a pile so that I could see what sizes I was working with.

Step 2: Grab all the books that you feel comfortable murdering and put them in a pile so you can see all the different sizes–in all seriousness, we have tons of duplicate books from bday parties and gifts.

Step 3: Make two piles–A pile for the books that have art that speaks to you, and a pile for the books that don’t.

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Step 4: Go through the pile you love and start to pick out what pictures you want in what frames–and trim the pages when applicable.

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I also opted to keep the glass out of the frame because I really hate when there’s a glare.  See below?  No bueno.

img_5311Because I was doing a gallery wall, I decided to spray paint some of the frames so I could have a good mix of metals.

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I wish you could see it in person, the wall is coming to life!  Who knew that children’s books would make such beautiful art.img_5356

My kids absolutely love it too!

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Here’s the link to my highlights where you can see a close up of all the pieces and a video of the wall. 

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As always, please DM me on Instagram if you try it.  I would LOVE to see.  And please, sign up for my email updates below.  I promise I won’t spam you.  We can be best buds.

Love,

Deema

 

 

 

 

 

 

How To Color Block A Wall In 4 Easy Steps

About a month ago I started to finish up the kid’s room, and felt like something was missing.  The walls felt unfinished, and they needed a “layer” of something.  This was also the only one of two rooms in the house without any wainscoting and it always bothered me.  And while I know I could’ve added some, I wanted a quicker, cheaper, and easier way to accomplish a similar look.  I had seen several color block walls on Pinterest, and I figured it was time to give it a try.

For context, this was the wall– Something just felt like it was missing, minus the fact that I hadn’t completely removed the decals that covered the entire wall yet (upper right).

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After removing the rest of the decals, this was the bare wall.

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For starters, there is no way I could’ve gotten a straight line without my laser level linked here.  I chose this because it was cheap and had great reviews on amazon–I will say that one thing I did NOT like about this level, was that the height can’t be adjusted.  I literally had to stack it on top of a bunch of books to get it where I needed it–but it got the job done, and it was cheap.

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This is what it looks like, it’s pretty small, and you can place it anywhere–another option (if you don’t want to use books), is to buy a stand for it.

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This is what the lazer looks like when it’s on, it’s pretty faint and isn’t as dark when you have a ton of sunlight coming in.  I know some DIYers advise using painters tape to line up here, but I found it easier and simpler to grab a super thin paint brush and simply tracing the line.

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Once I did that, I took a slightly thicker paint brush just to paint a thicker edge–that way when I used the paint roller I didn’t have to worry about accidentally painting over it.  You can use any paint brushes, but I used this pack on Amazon–I used the smallest one to trace, and the largest brush to fill a wider space.

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And now you can turn the lazer light off and grab your paint roller–as you can see the only place I used painter’s tape was on the baseboard.  I typically use 4-6 inch rollers, and for this wall I used a 6 inch.  I did two coats of Greige from Clare Paint, and I was done.

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Once I saw the one wall, I knew I had to complete the entire room.

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I was in love.  This was so easy and did not take much time at all.

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I ended up wrapping it all the way around the other side of the room too.  It completely transformed the room, and flowed right into those built ins I worked on prior.  And again, it was so easy!

Just to recap:

Step 1: Use a laser level to mark where you want to start the color.

Step 2: Use a thin paint brush to paint a thin line right on the lazer line.

Step 3: Take a slightly larger paint brush to fill out the line–that way when you use the roller, you don’t have to worry about accidentally going over the line.

Step 4: Use a roller brush to apply as many coats as you need–I did two coats.

And that’s it!

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And just for reference, I painted mine at 4 feet (my baseboards are 4 inches).  And again, I used Greige by Clare Paint.  Hope you like it, I know I do!  And the best part?  Super easy, quick, and cheap!  As always, please DM me on Instagram if you try it.  I would LOVE to see!  If you’re interested in other ways I’ve used different paint techniques in other rooms of my house, check out my past blog posts below:

  1. Faux DIY Backsplash Using Paint And A Dish Sponge
  2. DIY Sponge Paint Wall–Small Budget, Huge Impact
  3. DIY Faux Wallpaper Ideas

And please, sign up for my email updates below.  I promise I won’t spam you.  We can be best buds.

Love,

Deema

 

Faux DIY Backsplash Using Paint And A Dish Sponge

I wanted to share a fun, cheap, and easy DIY I did this weekend that made such a dramatic transformation to my master bathroom.  The real star of the show was the faux backsplash I did with a sponge, however, let me walk you through the entire bathroom refresh…

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This is my master bathroom, it’s not awful, in fact, the previous owner had remodeled it.  However, I always felt like the paint was “blah” and so was the entire bathroom.  I really wanted to add some life to it.

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Because we’re all stuck at home during this quarantine, I used what I had in the house.  I grabbed some leftover Greige Clare Paint that I had used in the kids room, and painted all the cabinets.  I then took this dull silver hardware, and spray painted it black. (excuse the awful pics!)

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Now for the fun part…I’ve always wanted a backsplash in here, but installing tile or stone is not on my list of current talents—I can imagine many of you are in the same boat.  So what did I do?  I grabbed a sponge, some leftover Seize The Gray Clare Paint, and I got to work.

Here’s what the sponge looked like (pretty much your standard dish sponge):

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You can see the full video tutorial on my Instagram here, however below is the quick step by step guide + some tips:

  1. Pour paint out in a dish large enough to fit a sponge
  2. Dip the sponge in paint and wipe off excess paint (You can also get a sheet of paper to dip the sponge in once before the wall to get excess paint off that way)
  3. Dip the sponge on the wall (multiple times before reapplying paint)–the imperfections will look great when some squares are faded and others aren’t
  4. Repeat–Pick the spacing you want between each “stone.” (but alternate like actual brick or tile would look, don’t stack them..see below)

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I’m awful at taking step by step pictures, and if you follow me on Instagram I have a video that will be much more helpful.  However, below are some helpful tips–this really was as simple as it seems!

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Tips:

  • Don’t use too much paint, always wipe off the excess before putting it on the wall.
  • Have a Q-tip and a wet paper towel ready in case anything drips
  • I cut a sponge in half for the ends of the wall, but I didn’t end up using it.  Instead I would eyeball the size by bending the sponge–it may make more sense if you see my video on Instagram here.
  • I didn’t measure, I eyeballed everything.  I LOVE the imperfections and feel like it gives it a more vintage weathered vibe.
  • Lastly, and this may be more personal taste, but I prefer using lighter paint colors when doing this.  I’ve tried this method a few other ways, and have found that darker paint colors don’t look as nice–darker colors also highlight mistakes much more than lighter colors.

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So what do you think?  Not too shabby for a cheap alternative to a real backsplash right?  I hope you try it too!  And send me a DM on Instagram and show me what it looks like!  If you’re interested in another way I’ve used a sponge technique, check out my DIY Sponge Paint Wall. And please, sign up for my email updates below.  I promise I won’t spam you.  We can be best buds.

Love,

Deema

 

 

4 Steps To Creating A Beautiful Gallery Wall

It’s no secret I love a good gallery wall.  In fact in my last apartment, I had so many of them that I probably needed an intervention.  I think they bring so much charm to a space, and there are so many different ways to do one.  Whether its a perfect grid family photo wall, or a floor to ceiling display, a gallery wall can bring so much character to your space.  And for an art lover like me, it’s a great way to showcase all my fun finds.

Now that I’m on my third gallery wall in my current home, I thought I’d outline 4 easy steps to follow when creating one yourself.  And while I love a good grid–I plan to do one of my family photos soon–below is a guide for a free flowing gallery wall–perfect for newbies!

Step 1:  Pick an overall “theme.”

Are you aiming to do a collage of family photos? Art? Mirrors? Clocks? A nice combo wall?  Are you going going for a color scheme?

Step 2: Grab everythaannnnnng.

And by that I mean, grab everything that’s a possibility for the wall and place it all in one space.  This way you can look at it all together and get a “feel” for it.  It may not be up on the wall, but by placing it all on the floor together, you can get an idea if you like what you see, or if you need to shop around for more stuff.

Step 3:  Map it out. 

Once you have all the “things” you want, start arranging them on the floor.  It may not be exact, but thinking it through on the floor is helpful.  The most important?  Pick the middle (or most prominent) piece first, that way you have a nice starting point.  I ALWAYS start from the middle.

**If you have significantly larger pieces along with smaller pieces, see my tips below for that too.

Step 4: Grab your hammer and don’t overcomplicate things.

Grab the piece that will be in the “middle” and hang it up.  Don’t think about it, just do it–remember you already mapped it out the step before this.  Here’s an example below.  I knew the white canvass was going to cover my thermostat, so I hung that up first and then started to go “around” it.

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And kept going….

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and going…

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…and going until I was finished!

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Another way to do it, is to start with the larger pieces and go around those.  So for example, that’s what I did with my most recent gallery wall–I picked the two larger pieces, placed them, and then worked the smaller art around them.

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And I did the same thing with my “mini” gallery wall in my bedroom–a reminder, not all gallery walls need to fill an entire wall. I grabbed the larger piece, and added smaller pieces around it.

 

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Alright, you ready?  And don’t worry if you don’t like something after you hang it up, simply remove it, and rehang it–it’s so easy to patch up nail holes.  I promise you, I’ve done it hundreds of times.  Now go on and start that gallery wall and make me proud.  And send me a DM on Instagram and show me what it looks like! And please, sign up for my email updates below.  I promise I won’t spam you.  We can be best buds.

Love,

Deema

Hate Cords But Love Lamps? Modern Lantern’s Got You Covered.

I don’t know about you, but there are two things that truly frustrate me when it comes to traditional lamps:  First, I hate how ugly cords look.  They drive me crazy, and I will go to great lengths to hide as much of them as I can.  Second, I’m always restricted where I can place lamps because of where my outlets are.  The same goes for beautiful sconces–There are so many places I’d love to have them on my walls, but unfortunately, I don’t have the ability to hard wire all my walls. Well, that’s where Modern Lantern comes in–Their lamps run on a chargeable battery. I recently purchased the Bella Bronze Cordless Lamp, and I couldn’t be more impressed.

Here she is on my fireplace mantel.

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In the middle of my coffee table..

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On my kitchen counter..

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In my living room where I have no outlet…

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My bedroom nook.  See that outlet next to the table?  A normal lamp would’ve had a cord dangling from that table…

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And my dining table…

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I think you get the point.  Now go check them out, I promise you won’t be disappointed.  And check out my Instagram this Saturday, I’ll be sharing a link to their monthly giveaway. And please, sign up for my email updates below.  I promise I won’t spam you.  We can be best buds.

Love,

Deema

DIY Sponge Paint Wall–Small Budget, HUGE Impact

Not a weekend goes by when I’m not painting these days, and I have another super easy (and cheap!) DIY that I just finished this past weekend.  Remember that Faux Wallpaper Dot Wall I did a few months ago?  Well instead of a paintbrush, I used an old dish sponge.  Yup, you read that correctly.  There are all kinds of different sponge techniques that you can play around with, and below is the one I chose to use this weekend.

This is what you’ll need:

  • Paint (I used Blackest by Clare Paint)
  • Painter’s Tape
  • Dish sponge
  • Scissors
  • Paint tray, or small disposable container (I used a small tupperware)
  • scratch paper
  • Drop cloth

(I know this sounds like a lot, but it’s not)

Step 1:

Lay out the drop cloth and place the paint and all the materials on top.

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Step 2:

Pour a small amount of paint into a tray, or in my case, I used a small tupperware that would fit my sponge. **You will not need much paint AT ALL.  My wall was small but I barely used any.  If you choose to do a larger wall, I’m confident you won’t need much either.

Step 3:

Cut the corners of the sponge off just to soften the edges.

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Step 4:

Place the tape on the wall you want to paint.  You can probably measure it, but for me, I eyeball everything.  I always aim for straight-ish around here.

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Step 5:

Dip the sponge into the paint and be sure to use the extra piece of paper to dab all the excess paint–this is SUPER important because if you don’t, the paint will drip and will not be cute.  Trust me, I speak from experience.

Step 6:

Start pressing the sponge on the wall to the left of the tape, and then to the right of the tape in the pattern shown below.  It’s ok (and in my opinion looks better) to have some imperfections in size and color.  You will see that some of mine are super dark, while others are very faded.

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Step 7:

Repeat.  I simply moved the tape over, and over, and over, and over…etc.

Step 8:

Enjoy!  And embrace the imperfections.  What do you think?  Small budget, HUGE impact.

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It looks WAY better in person, and on video.  Be sure to check me out on Instagram if you want the video version of this tutorial.  And please, sign up for my email updates below.  I promise I won’t spam you.  We can be best buds.

Love,

Deema

DIY Faux Wallpaper Ideas

I’m alive!!!  It’s been a minute since my last post, but I’ve been busy buying a home, moving in, and now I’m currently waking up 4 out of 7 nights a week in a panic because I can’t decide on a paint color or what rug size would fit best in whatever room I’m currently obsessing over.   Totally normal, right?  And if you’re not following me on Instagram already, you can check out our new home and follow along as I make it our own.

Last night I finished one of my easiest DIY’s to date!  It was probably my favorite, and one that made the biggest impact.  Insert dramatic drumroll….I attempted a faux wallpaper wall!  It was super cheap, super easy, and pretty quick.  Here’s how I did it below:

Step 1:  Supplies

You will need paint and paint brushes.  That’s it.

I got a free coupon to Benjamin Moore when I moved in, and so I went with them.img_0244

I ended up loving the paint and the color I picked!  I used Kendall Charcoal.  And FYI, you don’t need a lot. I got a quart and barely used any of it, and I had a pretty large wall to cover.  Next up, I had to get some paint brushes.

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A friend recommended this pack and I used the largest brush for this project.  This pack of 6 was only $14.99 on Amazon.

2.  Quick practice and test

Grab a piece of paper and start practicing.  I have a video that may be more helpful on my Instagram, but you basically dip the paint brush in the paint, and then alternate dotting the paper at different angles.

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I then taped the piece of paper on the wall so I could get an idea of how it would look.   And then I got ready!

3.  Start painting and pray

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And you’re ready!  I held my breathe and hoped for the best!  I kept dipping the brush in the paint, and then dipping it on the wall while alternating angles.  It was that simple.  The entire wall took about 2 hours.

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And I don’t know if you can tell from the picture, but it’s a pretty big wall.

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It went from one end of the house, all the way to the kitchen.

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And that’s it!  I was so happy with the end result.  This took two hours, was practically free, and look at the impact it had on the room.  If you end up trying it, I would love to see!  I wish I had taken a before picture, but this made such a difference.  And if you liked this post, you’d probably love the last one I did, 20 Ways To Add Character To Your Home.

**UPDATE*** I ended up adding this technique into one last corner of my home, except this time, using Blackest by Clare Paint.  See below!

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Love,
Deema

 

10 Reasons To Read Reese Witherspoon’s New Book: Whiskey in a Teacup.

If you follow me on Instagram, you likely didn’t miss my not so subtle excitement over Reese Witherspoon’s new book, Whiskey in a Teacup.  And it’s not because I’m obsessed with Reese Witherspoon, or the fact that I love Whiskey, or that I have an obsession with books in general.   Because all those things are true, but this book was really special.  I couldn’t put it down.  And by the time I was finished, I had texted all my girlfriends to go out and buy it.  Here’s why you should:

1.  You can totally judge this book by it’s cover.

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We all know I’m obsessed with coffee table books.  And if you’re a Reese Witherspoon fan (I mean, who isn’t?), the cover of this book is super cute and has her right on the cover.  It really is a beautiful book (and the pictures inside are beautiful too!).

2.  Totally a ‘feel good’ book

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You know how when you watch a movie and it makes you feel all good inside?  That’s exactly how I felt about this book.  I felt like I was sitting at the kitchen table having coffee with Reese as she shared all her stories, traditions, and tips.  She really reminds us what’s important about life–family, friends, home, and traditions.

3.  Recipes

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OMG the recipes.  And not just the food, but the recipes for drinks!  There is some serious good stuff in there.

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She even has full menu recommendations for different occasions.

4.  Stories + Memories

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Hands down my favorite part.  Reese shares a TON of memories and stories throughout the book.  She shares stories about important life lessons, shopping with her grandma, gardening with her grandpa, catching frogs, and how doing her own lemonade stand taught her a lot about running a business.

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And damnit she made me want a dog again!  She had me reminiscing about my own grandma and traditions, some of which were so relatable.

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And I loved learning about her mom, her incredible laugh, and her love for life and dancing.  Her grandma was a beacon of solid wisdom from beauty tips to her wisdom growing up in the civil rights movement, and the importance of love and inclusiveness.

5.  Parties and Traditions

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I LOVED learning about the dinner parties and different traditions she has and cherishes.  From the keepsake books for her kids, to the road trips (I already tried one of the games with my son during our morning car ride!), to the family dinners at the table, to the music, I loved them all.

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And look, now I’m convinced I need to host a Kentucky Derby Party of my own.  I’m already looking for some super cute hats.

6.  Tips, more tips, and then more tips!

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I don’t even know where to begin here!  She shares full menu ideas, table setting ideas, road trip games, hostess tips, flea market strategies, gift ideas, houseguest  etiquette, and even playlists for different occasions.

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I mean the list goes on and on.  And look, if you want to master the hot hair roller technique, or learn how to make the perfect sweet tea, this book is for you.

7.  The South

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As an extremely proud Lebanese woman, I LOVE how proud she is of where she came from, and loved learning so much about the South.   It was super cute, she even “translated” some of the Southern “language.”

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I loved learning about wicker and wallpaper, it totally gave me some ideas for my own home.  Reese talks about the music there, the traditions, the love for Monograms, and look, by the time I finished reading the book, I felt like I was about to let a few “y’alls” slip off my tongue.  Oh, and now I love Dolly Parton even more.

8.  Life Lessons

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Reese really hones in on what’s really important in life, from family and friends, to home and traditions.  She highlights how important dogs and animals are, and that it’s so important to make an effort in this busy world, to really sit down at the dinner table with your family and have good food and conversation.

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She talks about the importance of female friendships, and the importance of community and giving back.  I especially loved what she said about having a pretty home, but a welcoming and practical home for your family and your kids.  As she said it, “your home is not a museum.”  I think I need to remind myself of that sometimes.

9.  Book Club

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Umm, did you know Reese has a book club?  Not only does she share her favorites, but she shares ideas for a Book Club party menu, how she organizes her books, and all kinds of other good stuff…etc.  I cannot wait to start on some of her recommendations.

10.  Music, dancing, and playlists

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One thing I really loved was the theme of how important music was to her.  She shares many playlists throughout the book, and I thought that was such a nice touch!  She shares a little something about her early aspirations in life, but I’ll let you wait and find out when you read the book.

So go buy it!  Whether you need a cute coffee table book, a good read, or looking for a good gift, I promise you will not be disappointed.  I know this is definitely going to be my ‘go to’ for gifts for awhile now.  And Reese, in the off chance you ever read this, I totally get the sweatpants thing.  And thank you for reminding us that you can care about “silly” things like hair, makeup, or fashion, and still be educated, thoughtful, and care about other things like politics, and civic engagement.  And, please, write another book.

Love,

Deema

P.S.  Be sure to follow me on Instagram, on Facebook, and don’t forget to sign up for email alerts.  All the cool kids are doing it.  Scroll. All. The. Way. Down.