DIY Paper Greenery

Don’t you just love garlands?!? They make any space pop; however, if you use real greenery, the life of your garland is short lived and if you buy faux then be prepared to spend more money than what it would have cost you to buy real greenery and make it yourself. ORRRR… you could make paper greenery for a fraction of the cost AND it will last forever! Black thumb people unite!

This was my first time using floral crepe paper, and I am totally impressed with how real my greenery looks. My husband even thought it was real. I purchased the floral crepe paper by Lia Griffith through Amazon. You can buy just the green paper HERE, but I opted for the assorted color pack HERE because I plan to make flowers as well. This paper is amazing and different from regular crepe paper. It’s not as flimsy and the colors are perfect for flower and greenery making.

With this being my first time using this paper, I wanted to try something easier than 3 dimensional flowers, so I made English Ivy vines and a eucalyptus garland. The paper is durable and great to work with. I am in love.   

If you are not sure how big to make the leaves, you can download my free printable leaf template HERE.

Now let’s talk materials.

Eucalyptus Garland Materials:

Green floral crepe paper

Scissors

Scotch tape

Ivy Materials:

Green floral crepe paper

Scissors

Cloth stem wire

Scotch tape

Once you have all your supplies gathered follow the below instructions. Please note, these instructions pertain to both types of greenery.

Step 1: Cut out the leaves using the scissors and my free printable leaf template HERE.

For the eucalyptus garland, I cutout approximately 75-100 leaves, making the garland about 7 feet in total, but the amount you need will vary on the length of garland you want and how much you overlap the leaves. For the ivy, I used between 15-20 leaves per wire stem. 

Tip: to speed the process up, I folded the crepe paper over several times to cut out a lot of leaves at one time.   You can also buy an ivy leaf cutout, but I didn’t want to spend the money. 


Step 2 (ivy): Once you have all the leaves cut out you will tape the larger ivy leaves to the top of the wire stem and use the smaller leaves at the bottom. I overlapped the leaves in some places and spaced them out in others. There was no method to this, I simple eyed it for what I thought looked best.

Note: I highly recommend you use scotch tape and not floral tape or glue. I tried using floral tape (as you can see in the above picture) and the leaves kept falling off. I ended up using scotch tape to secure them and they have held up since. Its been over a month! 👏 

Step 2 (eucalyptus): After you have all your leaves, start the garland by overlapping two leaves and taping them together where they overlap. Continue this until you have reached the desired garland length.

Note: If you want to ensure that the garland stays intact, I would recommend sewing the leaves together if you do not want to use scotch tape. I used a glue stick at first and the garland came apart.

Step 3: Gently crinkle the ends of the leaves to give them volume and that authentic look.

Step 5: Hang your garland and/or ivy vines!

Both projects took about an hour and a half to complete, but I’m ok with that, because I know these greens will never lose their color or die. 

I really love the color of this paper. The greenery look so real! Plus I can add seasonal flowers to the eucalyptus garland to use it year round.

Well friends, that’s it for this post. I hope you found it inspiring. If you plan to make this or use my template I would love to know what you think! You can also come say hi or message me on Instagram @acarriedaffairdesigns

Until next time. Xo 

 

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Blueberry Mint Lemonade

Every year I host a summer party. Well actually this is the second year, but I plan to do one every summer. 😊 Anyway…with trying to make my guests happy I am always trying out easy recipes to serve at my summer gathering. I love blueberry & lemon pound cake so I figured blueberry lemonade would be good too. And it is! It’s such a refreshing summer like drink. Bonus, if you want it to make it an adult beverage, just add rum. It’s basically like a blueberry lemonade mojito. Yum!

So if you are wanting to make this refreshing summer drink follow the recipe below.

Ingredients:

4 lemons (1 for garnish)

1 cup of sugar

1 pint of blueberries (1/2 for garnish)

2-3 sprigs of fresh mint

2.5 cups of Country Time Lemonade mix

Note: This recipe makes 3.5 quarts

Instructions:

Step 1: Pour the Country Time Lemonade mix into your pitcher.

Step 2: Cut three of the lemons in half and remove the seeds. Then squeeze all the juice into the pitcher with the mix.

Step 3: Muddle 1/2 of the blueberries. Add 2-3 mint sprigs and the sugar to the muddled blueberries and muddle until mixed well.

Note: if you like your lemonade really sweet add an additional cup of sugar. 

Step 4: Using a strainer pour the blueberry mix into the pitcher.

Tip: To make sure I got all the blueberry mix into the pitcher, I used a wooden spoon and pressed down.

Step 5: Add 3.5 quarts of water and stir. Then put the remaining blueberries along with a few lemon slices in the pitcher.

Step 6: Pour into a glass and garnish with a few blueberries, a mint spring and a lemon slice. Enjoy! 

If you want to take it a step further, make blueberry and mint ice cubes. I bought these ice cube trays at Amazon when baby K was born so I could make all his food. I knew they would come in handy again. Click HERE to purchase them.

All you do is add 2-3 blueberries and a small mint sprig to each ice cube. Fill the trays with water and freeze. Easy peasy lemon squeeze. See what I did there.

This drink is so refreshing, isn’t too sweet, and looks pretty. What more could you want in a summer-y drink?!

Well that’s it friends. I hope you enjoyed my post. Feel free to leave a comment or come say hi on Instagram! My handle is @acarriedaffairdesigns

Cheers! Xo

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The One Pencil Skirt You Need

If there is one skirt you buy this summer, buy this one from J. Crew! I own more pencil skirts than jeans, dress pants, & yoga pants combined, and none of them come close to this pencil skirt! The fabric is forgiving, it doesn’t wrinkle (and I sit at a desk for most of my day), it keeps its shape, and it’s stylish. Bonus, it looks great on curvy girls, like me. 🙋🏻 Basically…BEST. SKIRT. EVER.

I’ve had so many compliments on this skirt and I feel great in it! Plus, I love the extra length. It just looks classic. The only thing I wish is that it was available in other colors, because I’d have one in every color.

The fabric is so nice that you could wear it all day at the office and then transition to a night on the town. Not that I actually get to do that, but if I did…

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P.S. Shout out to my friend and coworker, Gina, for being my unofficial photographer! I had just got done asking her to say something funny, because I get so awkward when I am getting my picture taken. Thank you Gina for making me laugh. ❤️

Anyway…

All I can say is, this is one work wear item you will never regret purchasing!

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House Plant Love

If you have been following along on my Instagram @acarriedaffairdesigns then you know my love for greenery & flowers. However, keeping them alive longer than a couple weeks has always been a struggle for me. To the point I was making a bi-weekly trip to our local garden shop to replace our house plants. Well friends, the cost of doing that was adding up quickly and definitely wasn’t a good long term solution. So I did some research as well as got advice from some plant aficionados and let me tell you, it made all the difference in the world. I am happy to report that after following the plant aficionados advice, I am no longer making those biweekly trips. With that said, I am sharing some of my favorite greenery, the benefits of them, and how to keep them thriving. Believe me, if I can do it, you can do it!

Now let’s talk types of greenery

I currently have all of these plants in my house and they all have made it past week 3! Can you believe that?!? Me, keeping plants alive? It only took all my life. Moving on…

Now let’s talk benefits & care tips for each of these plants

Fiddle Leaf Fig Tree

This tree has quickly become my favorite plant in our house. The fullness and the various green tones have me all sorts of heart eyes. Maybe the seagrass basket it’s in has something to do with it being my favorite. 🤔

Benefits: Produces high levels of oxygen and cleans the air of allergens.

Care Tips: Bright consistent light. Turn the plant every few months (once the plant starts to lean towards the light). Keep away from drafty areas.

Watering: Stick your finger in the top of the soil. If the soil is dry about an inch down, then it is time to water your fiddle.

English Ivy

Benefits: Reduces mold spores, benzene, and formaldehyde in the air of your home. To lean more about the benefits of English Ivy read THIS.

Care Tips: English Ivy is poisonous and should be kept out of reach from children and pets. 

Watering: If the soil is dry to the touch, then it needs water. If the soil is most at all, it is fine.

Rubber Plant

The rubber plant is almost impossible to kill, which is probably why it is still going strong! 😂

Benefits: This plant purifies the air and reduces airborne bacteria. It also produces oxygen and eliminates mold spores in the air.

Care Tips: The leaves tend to get dusty. I just wipe them with a damp towel.

Watering: Rubber plants do not require a lot of water. Actually, they are better off under-watered than over-watered. If the soil is completely dry then it is time to water, but if there is any moisture, you can wait to water.

Boston Fern

Benefits: Removes formaldehyde from the air and acts as a general air purifier.

Care Tips: Needs indirect sunlight & humidity.

Watering: Keep the soil damp at all times. I also mist the leaves twice a week to create humidity.

Heart Leaf Philodendron Plant

Benefits: Removes formaldehyde and carbon monoxide from the air. 

Care Tips: Poisonous. Keep out of reach from children and pets. 

Watering: Keep the soil damp. If the leaves turn yellow that means the plant is getting too much water. Brown leaves mean not enough water.

Succulents

Benefits: Removes formaldehyde.

Care Tips: Needs a lot of sunlight and well drained soil. I added rocks to the bottom of this snack bowl turned succulent planter and topped the rocks with soil. Doing this will allow the soil to drain.

Watering: Once every 3-4 weeks.

Tip: Clip some of the the leaves off and lay on damp soil to propagate and grow your succulent garden.

Areca Palm

Benefits: Natural humidifier. Removes, benzene and formaldehyde from the air. 

Care Tips: They need bright indirect light. Direct sunlight with make the leaves turn yellow.

Watering: Keep the soil moist. I water mine about once a week.

Asparagus Fern

Benefits: Improves indoor air quality.

Care Tips: Needs humidity and indirect sunlight. Can prune.

Watering: Mist the plant daily to create humidity. Water when the soil is dry to the touch.

Additional Care Tips

Tip 1: Use planters that have a hole in the bottom. If your planters don’t, put rocks at the bottom so there is room for the water to go. Letting your plant sit in the water can cause the soil to mold.

Tip 2: If you use city water to water your plants let the water sit out overnight before using it. City water has traces of chlorine which can make your plants die.

Tip 3: The advice I got from a gardener at our local garden shop is to push your finger into the soil around the roots, if the soil is still moist then no need to water it. If the soil is completely dry and/or looks like it is separating from the sides of the planter then it needs water.

Tip 4: Put a weekly reminder on your phone to check the plants.

We all have busy schedules, so it is easy to forget about watering your plants if they look ok at a glance. I set a weekly reminder on my phone to check my plants in the evening.

Well friends, that’s all for this post. I hope you enjoyed it! Please feel free to leave a comment if you have any questions or you can message me on Instagram @acarriedaffairdesigns

Until next time. xo

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