Luces de la Primavera – DIY Spring Lights

I came across this easy do-it-yourself spring craft – spring lights made from cupcake cups at lluvia de ideas. It was so cute and easy, I decided to knock-it-off!

I already had white lights. Rather than cut out the flower shapes myself, I bought Wilton flower cups at Michaels, a U.S. based craft store.


I then carefully pushed the cups onto the lights.

IMG_2682Be careful not to push too hard. You want to keep the hole as small as possible so the flower cup doesn’t fall off.


I love my luces de la primavera! And so do my kids! An easy diy spring craft that will brighten up any room, especially on a dreary rainy day.


Vackra Trädgårdar – BEAUTIFUL GARDENS from Around the World

As springtime approaches, I am anticipating making my garden and patio an inviting and beautiful haven for myself and my family. I’ve found some lovely gardens that do just that.

From what possessed me, I found this divine little patio garden (above) with a striking orange door and pink wrought iron patio set. features this quaint yellow and blue courtyard (above). I love the simplicity of using two color tones. The Mediterranean ethos is both relaxing and warm. The stucco wall and terracotta pots (below) exude that same feel.

Terracotta planters containing herbs or colorful perrenials are an easy way to get a Tuscan feel.

The Italian-inspired painted urns and the Madrid- inspired painted planters (below) can really give your garden a old-world European flair. From Frontgate.

Bold blues and whites combined with earthy pots and urns (below) exude a Greek Island feel. The contrast of colors with natural elements emanates a sun-loving look inspired by the Mediterranean Sea. (5)




luluto.blogspot (Soul Eyes Photography) via Soul Eyes Photography

Flickr (Jason Dale)

Flickr via Jason Dale via saranomad via saranomad

Greek amphoras by themselves or used as planters (below from Atelier de Campagne) are beautiful accent pieces.

amphoras atelier de campagne[1]

Natural whites, grain sack and burlap textiles and simple aluminum chairs are elements that radiate a french elegance (below). (2)

I love how Atelier de Campagne (below) incorporates an antique buffet and metal bin into patio décor pieces.

doly tub atelier de campagne[1]

shell planter atelier de campagne[1]

I adore the ruffled burlap tablecloth from French Country Cottage (below). Combined with simple aluminum chairs and white-washed candlesticks it makes for an elegant jardin de Provence.

Adding a creative flair by upcycling tin cans, (above) gives a modern twist to an otherwise traditional french country feel.

Salvaged garden items, wooden crates, railroad lanterns and tin watering cans help to create an old-world European look.

From Santa Barbara Chic (below) an eclectic mix of items combines both French and Mediterranean styles.

From Sweden, Greenspire Trädgårdskonsult (below) features a colorful casual garden.

Swedish garden décor involves a very relaxed and casual approach. I love the simple and easy-feeling of white wicker chairs and table linens from Skonahem (below).

Isas Trädgård (above and below) features lovely and enchanting gardens that include an eclectic collection of tools, shed accessories and salvaged materials. I adore the relaxed approach that gives off the feeling of a typical gardener’s backyard.



I love how an old rusty kitchen spice rack is upcycled into a plant stand.

One of my favorite Swedish designers is Minna Mercke Schmidt. Check out  Blomsterverkstad to see her enchanting gardenscapes.

Minna Mercke Schmidt och Marie Samnegå

Minna Mercke Schmidt och Marie Samnegå

Vibrant colors, tile-inspired patterned pillows and rugs along with lanterns featuring intricately cut designs reflect the Moroccan style of decorating (below).

my paradissi fresh lemonade on the terrace 2[1]

You can create a relaxing retreat pretty much anywhere. I love the patio garden below (from which sits in the heart of London. The patchwork of tiles and the multi-colored palette is Moroccan inspired.


I love this little Moroccan inspired patio (above) featured in Marrakesh By Design by New York Media & Bloggers Workman Publishing/Artisan Books. (2)

Comfy decorative pillows and cushions are a signature of the Moroccan style and easy to replicate in your own garden oasis.

The boldly colored Moroccan tile-inspired planters below from Bright Bold & Beautiful add a uniquely ethnic design element.

I love these Moroccan style lanterns (below) from My Craftwork. By inserting mirrors alongside the steps, the glowing effect is made more dramatic.

Inserting candles into baskets is another cute idea.

Here is my own soon-to-be spring patio (below). Despite the winter-like backdrop, the day’s temperature was 60 degrees and sunny. I threw together a simple tablescape to enjoy some wine with visiting friends.

globalknockoffsI hope you have been inspired to create your own Vackra Trädgårdar – BEAUTIFUL GARDEN. And, I hope you’ve been motivated to make it reflect your unique style and culture!


C’est une fête de jardin – A Garden Celebration!

I stumpled upon these fun and creative garden ideas. C’est une fête de jardin! It’s a garden celebration like no other. Check them out. Maybe you can knock-off one of these cute ideas yourself!

Ανοιξιάτικες-ιδέες-διακόσμησης2 (2)




Los Colores de la Primavera!


Los colores de la primavera son hermosos! The colors of spring are beautiful! The vibrant colors are a welcomed sight especially after our long chilly white winter. While the snow is slowly melting, the flower buds are revealing their heads. In anticipation of the colorful blooms outside, why not decorate your interior to reflect the season that is almost upon us.

Flowers are an easy way to add color to your interior. Give them a French twist as in the Chic Antique’s 2014 Katalog below. I love the contrast between the soft pale roses and the harsh wire basket.


Or accompany colorful flowers with colorful books (from Um Brinco)


Use a combination of vases, painted tin cans, and colorful containers with spring sprigs for an eclectic and vibrant tablescape (from Simples Decoracao below)

Or you can create your own colorful blooms to brighten up your table. Paper flowers set atop a white table runner (from Skarlett Spanish Design) is an easy do-it-yourself Fiesta Primavera project.


Use a combination of spring cuttings like forsythia, apple blossoms and magnolias and present them in monochromatic containers. I love the clear green vases (from Haken’s Place, below).


From My Leitmotive (below) vibrant hydrangas are paired with rustic tins, washboards and a pale blue water pitcher. The contrast of objects somehow works!

From Douce Etoile below, I love the old tin with the simple garden flowers.

From Achados de Decoracao (below) a plain glass jar of flowers hanging from a door knob adds a delicate yet colorful pop.


Simple clippings of forsythia branches in a vase add a spring feel. From Elle Décor (below). I do this myself every Spring!


Home accessories can complete a spring look. Check out these wonderful dishes and utensils. Great way to add color to your kitchen all year round!






Pastel pink candlesticks from LB Laursen Mynte Katalog



LB Laursen Mynte

I love this Rose & Bee Biscuit Barrel from Emma Bridgewater below.

From Emma Bridgewater

From Emma Bridgewater

Mercury glass candleholders in soft pastels from add an enchanting Spring touch.

I love this idea of placing spring blooms inside small mercury glass candleholders. From Chic Antique Denmark Katalog comes a very easy and simple décor idea (below).


I love the idea of changing your furniture’s hardware to brighten up your interior. Check out these adorable door knobs from Chic Antique.

Chic Antique Katalog

Chic Antique Katalog

Inexpensive accessories, such as pillows, throws and bedding can add  “los colores de la primavera” to any interior.

“Fun” colorful pillows from

CATALOGUE ML, Zara Home Catalogue, Zara Home Catalogue

Chic Antique Katalog

Chic Antique Katalog

Add a pop of spring color with painted furniture, lamps and upholstery.

To have a more permanent reflection of spring in your home, why not use paint?

The gradated green staircase (featured at is a wonderful example of how bright spring colors can illuminate an otherwise ordinary drab area. So cute and refreshing.

I hope these global inspirations have motivated you to celebrate “Los Colores de la Primavera” in your own home. And, I hope you have a very happy and creative spring!


Éirinn go Brách … Long Live An Irish Artist!

Finding panel

One of my favorite Irish artists is Rita Stynes Stow. She is an Irish born artist who paints very unique depictions of biblical passages and Celtic myths. Her artwork is beautifully fused with Celtic symbols and design.

Queen Maeve by Rita Stynes Stow

Queen Maeve by Rita Stynes Stow

Her unique style of Irish iconography is vibrant in color and detail.

The Annunciation

The Annunciation

One of my favorite paintings, King Brian Boru at the Battle of Clontarf and the defeat of the Vikings in 1014 (below) is full of intensity and contrast. The depiction of the dramatic battle scene is presented in soft olive hues, while the detailed symbols that surround it, although equally energetic, are vibrant and strong.

King Brian Boru

King Brian Boru

Her renderings of Mary, the Mother of God are rich in Irish motifs that animate their subject matter. Her presentation of the Madonna are both innovative and avant-garde.

The technique of interlacing Irish knotwork and elaborate symbols is characteristic of the identifiable ornamental aspects of Celtic art.

The Finding of the child Jesus in the Temple

The Finding of the child Jesus in the Temple

Her habit of incorporating geometric decoration with stylized figurative subjects is creative and intriguing.

Legend of St. Bridget

Legend of St. Bridget

While her ability to combine the biblical narrative with geometric symbolism is captivating, her melding of diverse religious practices (as in Krishna and Christ below)is provocative.



I hope you enjoyed this glimpse of one of my favorite artists, Rita Stynes Strow. And I encourage you to express your own culture and traditions through the artwork you create and display in your home.

See the artwork of Rita Stynes Strow at Triumph Brewery, Princeton, NJ, now through May 11, 2014.

Global Design & Decor… literally!

Nothing is as classic as a map. Nothing says, “world traveler” or adventurer” more.[1]

Incorporating a map into your home’s interior design is a great way to express your globe-trotting spirit. (from Elle Maison above).

You can use wallpaper with map designs or a framed image. A vintage old-world look can accentuate a home library or the classic style of a bedroom (Vim & Vintage above) as well as offer a strong yet elegant contrast to a modern interior (Regards et Maisons below).


I love the idea from Sfizzy (below) which literally maps out a cherished destination. What a unique way to remember a special trip, a romantic place or your family’s origin.


Want to give a unique gift to someone you love? Sfizzi commemorates special locations on a map (such as a destination wedding or marriage proposal) with a red stitched heart. So cute!

Another way to add old-world charm to your décor is to decoupage a map onto furniture. I love the little blue nightstand (below) from Primitive & Proper which integrates an old Atlas map and a simple hand-painted table.

From Ikea Hackers, comes this wonderful map chair (above) using a Nordmyra chair from Ikea. She was inspired by some tables and chairs she saw in London.

I love the map dresser (above) from Homedeco2u.httpwww.recyclart.org201308recycled-stools

From Recycleart (above) comes some very clever stools that were inspired from the London tube map. They feature the colors of the metro lines and locations in London.

From Paper Blog (above) comes a very unique decorative diy project that combines wooden letters with maps. Using your own initials and maps that point out special locations is great way to customize your wall décor.

From Martha Stewart, I found these adorable ways to celebrate a destination wedding. Using a map that features the location of the marriage (above & below) on a frame, candle holders or on vases is both unique and fun.

Another cute decorative item for a destination wedding or a bon voyage party is this map heart garland from 10PaperLane on Etsy (below). You could easily make this yourself.

Ten Paper Lane onEtsy

Have an old globe in your attic, or did you find one at a thrift store? From Viaggiare Oltre comes this unique decorative bowl (below) using half of a globe. I think this would look beautiful containing simple olive tree sprigs or eucalyptus.

A great way to add a touch of New York sophistication into your décor is to knock-off these illuminating candle holders (below) also from Viaggiare Oltre. You could also use maps of Paris or Rome. Or apply the maps you actually used from a city you visited. What a great souvenir from your travels!


Applying a map to a lamp shade is another great way to celebrate a favorite location or turn a traveling companion (a map) into a treasured souvenir. I love the two map lamp shades from Not On The High Street (below). One offers a soft pale green pallet while the other contrasts it with a vintage old-world feel.



Check out another unique way to commemorate a great trip? From Map Motifs, comes this very creative light switch cover (below). My niece gave us one that featured Thessaloniki and Halkidiki, Greece – where she visited us while we were vacationing.



Our own light switch cover featuring Thessaloniki and Halkidiki, Greece.

I love the idea of incorporating actual globes into interior design. The 3-dimensional quality adds a pizzazz that a 1-dimensional map can’t do. From Benoit Vieubled comes “World Upside Down,” a chandelier like no other (below)

From Pinterest, comes this hanging globes light fixture (below).

hanging globe lights

And last but not least, my niece, Kathleen’s, own globe lamp shade creation (below)! She added a beaded fringe and used an antique lamp base. Beautiful.


There are countless ways to incorporate maps and globes into interior design and décor. From world travels or thrift store finds, global design elements emphasize adventure and an enthusiasm for life. I encourage you to share your love of travel and your favorite destinations in your own home’s décor.