Saving Money on Home Decor by Bringing the Outside In
Today I want to ask you to take a second and push pause on whatever is going on around you. Give yourself a moment to relax, and set those things that are busying your mind aside for a minute. I want you to think about the last time you had a chance to pour over the pages of your favorite magazine, or squeezed in some time to scroll through Pinterest. I bet there was one room that spoke to you. One room that got you excited about the possibility of achieving that same look in your own home. Think for a moment about what that room had that your's doesn't-the one thing that nearly every room you see in a glossy magazine or trendy blog has. Stumped? Reasonably so, because this is such a simple thing, that many times, people overlook.
I'm talking about fresh flowers!
It is no coincidence that all of these rooms are styled with fresh flowers...they literally bring life into a room. They make people feel good, and add another colorful dimension to what can otherwise be a boring space. So, while we are in envisioning mode, I now want you you think about hotels. Those flowers you always see in the lobby when you check in, are not put there because management had some extra money laying around and needed a place to spend it. They were put there intentionally, and most likely at a reasonably high cost.
Here's where the good news comes in for you. You can treat yourself to this same luxury for a fraction of the cost. All you have to do is think outside of the box, the box, being your house. The first, and most obvious place to start could be your own yard or garden. Many times I will plant a certain perennial with the sole intention to have cut flowers year after year (scroll through the photos below to see some of the ways I've used clippings from our own yard to decorate). Think peonies, hydrangeas, black eyed susans (the list goes on, but these are a few of my favorites).
It's an arrangement & air freshener all in one.
But they don't have to be flowers...sometimes herbs make for a beautiful arrangement. Not only that, they bring in a fresh aroma-talk about a win win! It's an arrangement and air freshener all in one and for the unbeatable price of FREE! Some of my go-to herbs to bring indoors are mint, rosemary, and even chives! I know, I know. "Onions?" Stick with me here. I like to cut the green onions once they have their pretty purple flowers. It only takes a few, so cut the stems long and plop those long, lean beauties in a tall slender vase, or add them to an arrangement with other flowers.
Not a green thumb? Not to worry, I've got ya covered. Depending on the season, small clippings of tree branches make for some show stopping displays. My favorite is by far the cherry tree blossoms in spring. And they smell delicious! In the winter, you can opt for some fir branches. Or if you want that yummy smell that screams Christmas, go for cedar. There are so many that would really do the trick, and depending on where you live, you'll have your own different and unique options to choose from. The idea is to head out into the fresh air and look around with an open mind. Try not to see an entire bush, but rather, a few springs. You'd be amazed at what some of these common, everyday plants look like when you've taken them out of their element and given them a place in the spotlight.
Now, I realize that I am lucky to live on a small piece of land in the beautifully green state of Oregon, where I have plants and trees everywhere I turn and that this not true for everyone reading this. I am also aware that there are people living right here in my home state that might be like, "Hey girl, that's all good and well, but I live in [the city, a rental, an apartment, a condo, a floating home], where do you propose I find this free vegetation you speak of?" To those people, I am by no means suggesting that you go clip the community flowers (however, if you watch for the landscaping crew to show up, I bet they'd be more than happy to give you some of their clippings). Instead, go for a drive in the countryside, take a hike, and pick yourself a beautiful bouquet to bring home. I realize that this might sound crazy...Who spends the afternoon driving around the countryside looking for wildflowers? But here is my suggestion...
Make a trip out of it. Toss the kids in the car, turn the devices off, and set out to see who can spot some cool looking plants on the side of a quiet country road. Orrr, pack a lunch and hit the trails. On our family hikes, the girls do so much better when they have a mission. Sometimes we tell them to pick one of every variety of flower they come across. Sometimes we are looking for an array of plants with interesting foliage. You can make up your rules, the idea is to have fun, include the whole family, and come home with an arrangement that the entire family can be proud of.
Don't overlook the weeds!
If you are still coming up short on ideas of where to get your hands on some plant life, don't overlook the weeds! Some of my favorites are the freebies that grow in the ditch! Of those weeds, Queen Anne's lace is right up at the top of my list. Because it is plentiful this time of year, I've been picking bundles of this stuff and sticking it all over the house!