Crafting with Amanda Seyfried Interview!

Crafting with Amanda Seyfried

Amanda has been a long-time Lars reader and she’s even made a few projects that she’s posted about on her Instagram in the past. Because of that, I thought she might be interested in participating in our Craft Along, but never did I think she’d respond so enthusiastically and so quickly. You can read below how it happened!

Here’s the full transcript of our Amanda Seyfried interview. I particularly loved hearing about how crafting is such a big part of her identity. She’s a true maker!

Amanda Seyfried Interview

Brittany: Amanda, are you in your craft room?

Amanda: Yeah, when i’m in LA which is not where i live, it’s like my heaven–this is my view!

 

B: You are a legit crafter! Let’s start there.

A: I am! If only I got paid to do it!

B: Uhhh–I’m pretty sure someone would love to [pay for] that. 

B: It’s technically a hobby, but it’s how I’m happiest–-creating things!

Craft Along for Charity

B: Okay, I really want to get into that.  I’m gonna do some prefaces first. So first of all, I got really excited about your craft room so I think that’s why I jumped in! Welcome to our live, everybody! We are here with Amanda Seyfried because we’ve got some really fun things that we’re working on today! So, we are here to paint a nativity set. We’re painting an angel and it’s gonna be super fun, but we’re also raising funds for Nest!

Nest is a non-profit that supports hand workers in the global economy. So, specifically for this we’re trying to raise $2,500 to support Makers United which gives resources to makers in the US and also, more specifically to refugees who have come to America from Afghanistan and other makers in the US. It’s a super important cause and that’s why I was like “you know, we have to reach out to somebody who loves crafting.” I know you’re super involved with causes that you’re very passionate about, so to me it was like a no-brainer. When you actually said yes, I was like, “What’s going on!?”

There [are] three ways to raise money for [Nest]. 1) One is buying the e-book which tells you how to do this nativity set, then 2) straight up donations which we have a link for in our bio, and then 3) at the end we’re gonna auction off this nativity set! So, Amanda is joining us, but so are seven other people who are also really awesome at what they do, [and they’ll make more of the figurines].

A: Thanks for letting me join in on this! … I didn’t know about the craft along! What better way to raise funds for this kind of thing than to get people together and do the same thing, especially these days! You’re a genius and I really appreciate what you do in general. I’ve been following you for a while and I bought your book a while back and then you sent me another one! … It’s nice to meet you!

B: So we’re going to get started! We’re painting this angel. … I have to say, I craft for a living but crafting in public terrifies me!

A: It’s terrifying! Anything can happen! It’s super public!

B: Who knows what this is actually going to be! I’m probably going to be paying more attention to you than anything else. … I’m very slow so I have a feeling I might get the hair done and that’s it. 

A: Also I’m really chatty 

B: So I’m having a hard time actually painting ’cause I just want to ask you a question! I guess what I’m most excited about is–-I don’t know, have you ever talked about crafting, this part of what you do, and your hobbies?

A: You know, every time I have an interview or I’m doing a press junket for a movie, I think my favorite part is when they ask me things that have nothing to do with the project. Because you know, once you get me going I can just… go anywhere! … I have my hands in so many different crafts and fiber arts and stuff like that. So it’s it’s really fun to talk about, which is why I said yes so fast! I was like “Oh, the other love of my life which is making!” And I am a maker! I just, you know, have my first job which is acting, and then this … feels like my second job. I just have less time [now], you know, with kids.

Amanda the Maker

B: What do you make? 

A: Right now I do a lot of embroidery. I make hats–I mean, I used to make hats; I don’t make hats anymore. Right now I’m making a scarf… I love crocheting. I like to [knit] sweaters [and] socks when I can really focus… I like to… fix things and I just got into [mending]. I can’t read Japanese, but I just got… a new [Japanese] mending book.

B:They have the best craft books.

A: Yeah! I like to… make flowers paper flowers. I made [some] paper flowers 10 years ago and they’re still beautiful! Oh also, you know what I do big time? I have one of those those cutters. The Cricut ones.

B: You have a Cricut machine! Haha I love this this! This is so fun! Did you make plants? 

Paper plants by Amanda Seyfried

A: I made so many of them and I gave them to so many people! There’s one up there, too!

B: We just made some beautiful hollyhocks. Well, I didn’t make them. We have a crafter, Gwen, who made these ones. I mean, she’s incredible. Let’s be honest. Like, right now I have a new baby and I’m trying to keep a business going, [so I’m not crafting much right now] 

A: I don’t know how you do it.

B: I don’t know how you do it! But I think it’s awesome that you prioritize your time to make things! … I have to show you this. This is a new tutorial that we just made I don’t know if you can see it it’s pretty incredible. [You can see the paper flower hollyhock tutorial here]

paper hollyhocks on a bathroom counter among ceramic odds and ends with a mirror and red floral wallpaper in the background.

A: It looks real! It’s so substantial!

B: It’s pretty fun. We have a new tutorial about how to make hollyhocks on the blog.

A: Do I need my Cricut?

B: No, this one is made out of crepe paper but … it’s super easy [with] simple shapes. It’s super easy to do.

A: Is there a lot of glue or wiring?

B: Wiring, yeah, with the leaves. And glue. …It looks kind of intricate, but it’s really simple to do.

A: …When they look real, I swear! I mean, I hate spending money on things that I think I can make. And I think I can make everything! It’s so hard but then you see something–

B: You never make it!

A: And then … you don’t have time to make it. …I bought these huge flowers … and I felt really guilty doing it, but then I was also supporting somebody who spent hours and hours and hours of their time creating these beautiful things. 

B: That’s the trade-off. Because it’s like, you can either support an artist making it or you can like pretend like “I will add that to my priority list!” and I rarely do that these days.

A: Yeah it’s so funny, when I was pregnant with my son I just had my daughter so it was a lot easier when she was two I made because of the pandemic I was able to release it and make so many things I finished a really heavy sweater I did a giant granny square blanket I started making a rug which i still haven’t finished, hand quilting, all that stuff POOF my time gone.

B: I hear you.

A: How old’s your baby

B: Almost 9 months 

A: It’s so fast and so slow. Who helps you–i mean who’s helping you?

B: Well, I have a team of makers. Jane is here helping me today–she’s our photographer and video person and she knows how to make lovely things too and then there’s Hailey who, shout out, did my amazing nails.

A: Oh SHE does them, wow.

B: And Gwen’s our maker who made so many amazing things that’s what we do we make things. Garet is the one who dreamed up this Craft Along!

A: I’d love to be a part of your meetings like what are we gonna make next.

B: Okay you’re invited.

A: Thanks

B: Our brainstorm meetings are on Friday so schedule it in.

A: Amazing. One day, if I have time, I swear that’s what I would do. 

B: How about, okay, I have an idea for you crafts…maybe something inspired by your films…like Mamma Mia…maybe something Greek.

A: That’s, I mean, that would take some fabric to sew together or something like a crown. I love your crowns.

B: Okay that’s fun–I like where we’re going with this crown inspired book. I feel like you could do color palettes inspired by Greece…I don’t know I think I think there’s something there…

Colors

A: I’m obsessed with color palettes

B: Oh thanks! What’s your favorite right now? 

A: Like a dusty rose and like, what’s the blue called…periwinkle 

B: I’m into like periwinkle–it’s having a moment right now.

A: Peach is having a moment for me. I thought i would never like peach

B: I just painted my closet peach. Jackie O always painted her bathrooms like a pinkie peach because she thought it reflected well on her skin, so I did that too.

A: Really good idea. Everything in my house is gray all the walls are like gray or white. I love your aesthetic. I look at it. I love the website I love everything you do. It’s so colorful, but then I was looking to your stories and the things that you post from other people just for inspiration or whatever. You have a really good eye I don’t know if you have but if you ever make an interior design book.

B: That would be a dream.

A: What are these right here [points to the top of the angel]

B: Those are little clips, little hair clips.

A: What color are they?

B: They’re like a light blue, one might say a periwinkle 😉

A: Is it number 12 

B: I think so. Jane didn’t put numbers on mine so I don’t know which one it is.

A: You are giving a set away? 

B: We’re giving away two sets because we’re giving one set away that our guest crafters are painting, like yourself, and the one that Team Lars paints.

A: right right right 

B: So we’ll be giving away 2. We’ll auction them off at the end of this craft along. Just a reminder for those just joining that we are raising funds for Nest today. We have a link in our bio to donate directly to Nest. Additionally, the profits from this ebook, which are also linked on our bio or the housethatlarsbuilt.com.

Midcentury painted heirloom nativity figures against a pink and red striped background.

B: What types of crafts did you do growing up?

A: Yeah I did I did crafts growing up creating stages and then being all the characters in the play in my imagination. I grew up designing like I went through a phase where I color coded everything in my room so around my bed was blue with like a bowl of blue candies or whatever blue things I had.

I’ve suffered from some OCD so I think I think it’s really served me well in some ways as a creative but I mean obviously it’s a struggle as well but it’s it’s interesting the way I wanted to curate everything in a very specific way which is funny why I don’t know why I didn’t become an interior designer. I realized I wouldn’t be good at it as an adult. I didn’t learn to crochet or knit until I was 18 but I made costumes. I don’t know I couldn’t stop creating things because I felt like I needed something to do. I needed something to start and finish.

I loved the question about podcasts.

Podcasts for crafting

B: Yes–what do you listen to while you make or watch or are you in silence?

A: No, no silence never. You know it’s funny I put on Hercules for my daughter today and I’m like I cannot watch Hercules for the 17 thousandth time so I started watching the second episode of the Morning Show and I was very disappointed when it’s like and it was only one episode. I love podcasts I just finished In Your Own Backyard thrillers or friends that I know everyone has podcast these days. I used to listen to Dan Savage, but right now i’m listening to an English thriller on Audible. What about you?

B: I’m I’m a big Netflix and crafter type of person 

A: You can’t do subtitles that way. 

B: It has to be something light and maybe I’ve already seen. Maybe The Office for the 11th time

TV shows for crafting

A: Have you seen offspring?

B: No what’s that 

A: It’s my favorite show. It’s an Australian show about an obstetrician and I’m obsessed. It’s the best comedy. It’s really funny yeah it’s a little sad but it’s really funny as long 

B: As long as it’s mostly funny. I have a thing where, especially during the pandemic, I can only do comedies or rom coms.

A: I totally get it. There’s nothing like a good comedy like The Office to go back to especially the English Office. 

B: True.

A: I feel like can always recalibrate.

The Dropout Movie with Amanda Seyfried

B: Talk with me about what you’re working on right now. Are you in LA for something special?

A: Yeah I’ve been here for a while I’m going back soon thank God because there was an earthquake in the night and I just about lost my mind because I was at work. I am working full time right now on a true-crime show right now and it’s it’s actually in the news right now because I play Elizabeth Holmes and her trial is is in session so…

B: I’m obsessed with this case–I’ve listened to every podcast about it.

A: Yeah, and the new one’s out.

B: I’m losing my mind right now.

A: Producing the show with Rebecca Jarvis and Victoria are not on set because they’re working obviously, but it’s called “The Drop-Out” so it’s intense I will say it’s intense I need a break after this. It’s also intense because I’m an actor so compassion and relating to the character is my job and so it’s it’s really tricky, but it’s a show I think you’re going to love it. I don’t even know what I’m going to say when I’m doing press for it next year it’s just it’s a lot you know.

Motherhood and Acting

B: So do you feel like it’s a part of your job to like live in that moment of empathy. The whole time you’re doing it or you like oh no I need to go home and like do something else? 

A: More recently I’ve I felt like I just need to just take off that whatever you know whatever I’m doing spiritually I don’t know I don’t know how else to describe what’s happening it’s like an energy thing it’s like I’m at work and I’m embodying her and on the weekends sometimes it’s like go to Disneyland or something different immerse myself in what my kids are doing and watch movies at night and do anything, but I also have really short weekend so if I finish at 3 a.m. Saturday morning and then I go back at 5:30 a.m. on Monday so I have to I have to know my lines so I have to look at them and it’s impossible to get away from it so that’s it’s a struggle if that’s always a struggle now that I have two kids especially.

B: Are they there with you right now.

A: Yeah I don’t go anywhere without them.

B: Oh wow.

A: Really my husband’s going to be going to work and we’re staying here. But if I were going to Georgia and work the kids are probably yeah it can’t be like that I can’t go I just can’t–Life’s too Short. 

B: Are you super hands-on?

A: Yeah, I mean I we’ve never had a nanny. It’s just my mom, but my mom lives with us. It’s not like I’ve never had a nanny. My mom is our nanny. I could never be the parent I am if I did not have my mom or someone full time. Not enough people talk about the help you need being a mom and being a parent. 

Working mothers

B: I do. I don’t know how anybody has multiple children. Now I’m gonna speak directly to women–I don’t know how women get things done. Mothers tend to take the caretaker role more often then men. I don’t know how people do it, but right now we don’t have anyone to help so we’re trying to evenly split it. 

A: We all need help. It’s like, I don’t know how it’s not more [addressed]. Maternal health in general especially right after you have a baby. It’s so weird our country so slow to help. It’s like we are creating the children and birthing these children and it’s like it’s a lot to being a new parent and it’s a lot to be a new mother physically, emotionally hormones and not to leave out fathers to me it’s just it’s a lot it’s heartbreakingly beautiful and also just intense and we don’t.  I mean guys not having you know paid leave after having kids that should be something I mean we should have more paid leave for mothers.

B: Did you take time off after your children?

Maternity Leave after Mamma Mia 2

A: Yeah I mean I was lucky they dropped Mamma Mia 2 in my lap when I came two days after I came home from the hospital with my daughter and I cried hysterically not just because i was having a hard time breastfeeding but also because the idea of leaving my kid or at least getting into the headspace of going overseas and in four months from then it was just it was too much to handle we made it work and my mom and husband and they were amazing. I had 4 months off after her and then I had him in the pandemic so I mean I didn’t work until June and I had him on September.

B: So did you have to birth with the mask on? 

A: I didn’t, thank God. Did you they let you take it off?

Swapping birth stories

B: I’m sure they wouldn’t have said anything but I did leave it on the whole time.

A: Did you get an epidural?

B: Yes. 

A: Did you get it in time? 

B: Yes 

A: Oh good 

B:  I had a not a great experience the first time around so the second time we just took all precautions. 

A: Wait, so you got the epidural when you were still kind of okay?

B: Yeah

A: That is the trick

B: Oh yeah, well the plan was to go to a birth center and be in a bathtub and that didn’t quite go as planned.

A: I get it listen we all have our ideal settings the, the calmer the better mine was the birth center in a hospital, but it’s also because I know my midwife really well. She’s a friend of mine it was fine, but I didn’t have a great experience with the epidural fine and and I was yeah I was not wearing a mask by the end but tested, of course, they test you right when you get in there.

B: Yeah, same thing.

December birthdays

A: You have a December Baby, right?

B: Yeah

A: December what?

B: 21st.

A: I have a December birthday. Mine’s the 3rd. Right before Christmas. You have a Nativity baby.

B: Secretly this is all for him. Ha!

A: Right, I get it. I totally get it. So your husband’s with him right now?

B: Yeah he took them on a walk right now because I have 3 year old too. How old is your oldest?

A: 4 1/2 in school. She’s in school. I mean, not today obviously, but she’s in school and and she’s busy, thank God.

Painting Check-in

B: How is yours [nativity figure] looking? Let’s do a check-in. I’m a little distracted.

A: You went red and I went white first

B: I know. I’m worried about the details to be honest, but yours is looking great it looks perfect.

A: I should’ve done the red first, you’re right. I should’ve done the red first.

B: Um wait no… is there a better way…no wait yours is probably better because then you can go…I’m gonna have to put tons of white layers on top of each other to cover up my red mistakes so I think you’re…

A: Not having it perfect.

B: Oh yeah.

A: I’m a perfectionist which isn’t ideal when you’re trying to teach your kids how to do what you do.

B: I’m sure they say they love that attention to detail.

A: Maybe

B: Oh! I just looked at the time we only have two minutes .

Side Projects with Amanda Seyfried

A: Oh no oh God okay I was trying to give a little bit of a buffer so I can run downstairs before my meeting. My girlfriends and I are creating a company–more on that in years from now–it’s for play houses. They’re on the East Coast and we always have our standing Sunday meetings otherwise I go to work, but I can spare i can spare like 10 min it’s what happens, i talk…

B: Well, maybe we should wrap up but thank you thank you so much. I should tell everybody from the moment I sent my dm “hey would you be interested in doing this” she wrote back “yes yes yes yes yes” and i was like–“I don’t understand what’s going on.”

Thank you for your generosity and coming to paint with me for this nativity set that we will be auctioning off at the end to raise money for Nest and this e-book with the instructions which tells you where to get the pieces, where to get the colors.

I could have talked to you forever! My goal was to learn way more about what making means to you and what you do and I got to learn a little bit about it so that was a real treat for me so thank you.

Makers for Life

A: Thanks. I think in general I love connecting to makers and moms so it’s like I this is easy for me and I’m so glad that I could do it with you and be a part of this whole thing. I think it’s great we both are trying to make a change. 

I’m gonna finish this when the kids are in bed.

B: I know it’s going to take some work so no pressure! 

A: Oh i’m finishing it it’s going to be an Amanda Seyfried original except I’m going by the instructions.

B: OK sounds fair sounds fair. But i have a feeling you would do pretty well without them too so I’m not nervous at all.

A: I’ll go downstairs and get them 

B: Okay, well, take any artistic liberties you want and make sure you sign the bottom! 

A: For sure. If you ever need me again you know how to reach me. Thanks everybody for coming in and you know and thank you for donating to Nest and have fun.

B: You have fun with your standing meeting.  Can’t wait to see it in many years from now.

A: It’s my girlfriends from home we grew up together and it was like you know what I like designing things and we all have kids you’re going to do this your it’s one of those things that just happens over time you let’s spend more time together and do it for a good reason thank you thank you!

B: Thank you for spending the time with me 

A: And I’ll send this back as soon as I’m done.

B: Hooray!

More chats for our Lars Craft Along

If you liked this Amanda Seyfried interview, you might enjoy watching the other Live interviews I’m doing over on Instagram like with Mary Engelbreit, Sabrina Soto, Elsie Larson of A Beautiful Mess, Tracy Reese and more on the way

Donate to Nest Here

Painted Mini Pumpkins

Painted Mini Pumpkins

I love the look of all of our mini painted pumpkins this year, especially as a cohesive look. In fact, the more the better! We based them off of our new Casetify collection because they are definitely worth replicating! The checkerboard is such a fun and easy pattern to paint as is the colorblock and squiggles. The florals take a bit more work but they are *chef’s kiss.* Do you have a fave? I’m leaning towards the folk floral, but then again, that’s also my favorite case so there’s a theme there.

painted pumpkins DIY

How to paint mini pumpkins

We started out with white pumpkins so that it would be easier to see the pattern. Orange works too, but you need more layers of paint to see the design. It’s also easier if you choose pumpkins with longer stems. I know that because we couldn’t find any and it was tricky! It’s nice to be able to hold onto something sturdy.

painted pumpkins to match The House That Lars Built casetify cases

Materials

  • white mini pumpkins (you should be able to get these at most grocery stores this time of year!)
  • acrylic or house paint (see colors below!)
  • paintbrushes
  • UV sealant (optional–keeps the paint looking nice longer)

How to paint a checkerboard pattern on a pumpkin

To create the checkerboard pattern on a pumpkin you will need to do the following:

  1. Paint your whole pumpkin in the lighter of the two colors you plan to use. Let it dry,
  2. With a thin marker, draw lines down each of the mini pumpkin’s natural grooves. The lines won’t be perfectly measured, but they will be a lot easier to paint this way!
  3. Draw even horizontal stripes around the mini pumpkin.
  4. Fill in every other box with the darker paint! Make sure you cover up the marker lines.
  5. We added in thicker accent stripes to mimic our cases just for fun
  6. Add on your UV sealant if desired.

folk painted pumpkin

How to make the quilted folk floral mini pumpkin

  1. Use your permanent marker to draw out a grid pattern on your mini pumpkin, similarly to how you did with the above checkerboard technique. We made ours two grooves thick so that the “quilt squares” were bigger.
  2. Paint in the colors of your squares. Wait until dry.
  3. Use the end of a pencil or large paintbrush to create a ring of the petals inside the squares.
  4. Paint contrasting circles onto each square in the center of the petals.
  5. Use UV sealant if desired to seal the paint.

How to make wavy line painted mini pumpkin

How to make the simple floral painted mini pumpkin

  1. Paint the whole mini pumpkin in a solid background color.
  2. Follow the flower instructions from the quilted pumpkin, but without the squares–just place them around your pumpkin randomly!
  3. Use UV sealant if desired to seal the paint.

How to make large floral painted mini pumpkin

These are one of my favorites! I love the decorative element it brings.

  1. With your permanent marker, draw lines down the mini pumpkin’s natural segments, dividing it into even sections.
  2. Draw out your design in each section. Our design includes an abstract flower at the top (yellow), a tall, symmetrical flower taking up most of the pumpkin’s body (in shades of red and pink with a green stem and leaves), and two abstract flowers at the bottom (yellow).
  3. Using the background color, paint in most of the pumpkin’s background. Avoid painting over your sketch of the flowers, but if you cross the marker lines a little bit, you should be okay. You just want to leave enough of your drawing so that you can see where to paint your flower.
  4. With your yellow, pink, red, and green paints, paint in the rest of your floral design.
  5. Use UV sealant if desired to seal the paint.

floral painted pumpkins

How to make the wavy lined painted mini pumpkin

  1. Paint the whole mini pumpkin in a solid background color.
  2. With an accent color, paint the outline of a wavy, squiggly design down the mini pumpkin’s side.
  3. Fill in your wavy shape with the same accent color.
  4. Use UV sealant if desired to seal the paint.

A clump of painted mini pumpkins in bright colors.

How to make the delicate floral painted mini pumpkin

This one is such a pretty showstopper, and it’s way easier than it looks! You’ll use a fine tipped paintbrush instead of a foam paintbrush. Just make sure to clean it between colors!

  1. If desired, paint the whole mini pumpkin a solid background color. I opted not to, instead showing off the pretty white pumpkin color, but you do you!
  2. With green paint, paint little curved lines as flower stems and wavy green leaves coming off the bottom of them. Distribute these around the pumpkin randomly.
  3. Top the flower stems with white or light pink flowers with red centers.
  4. Paint abstract yellow flowers around the pumpkin’s surface.
  5. Fill in empty space with mini periwinkle, pink, red, and orange flowers. For these, just make a few small brushstrokes. Paint a tiny green stem underneath or a white dot in the middle for a different style.
  6. Use UV sealant if desired to seal the paint.

delicate floral painted pumpkin on a pink and orange background. There's a matching phone case next to it.

Marbling technique didn’t work this time

We tried doing a marbling technique as inspired by our Casetify marbled case, but it just wasn’t working out. I’ll be sharing the failed version over on Instagram (hahahaha!). If you have a marbling technique that has worked for you in the past, let us know!

cell phone cases match the painted pumpkins

You can shop our The House That Lars Built for Casetify Collection here

We would love to see how you’re painting your mini pumpkins this year. Tag us with #LarsHalloween or #LarsMakes so we can see them! 

If you liked these painted pumpkins you might also like these ones:

Rainbow painted pumpkins
Pastel painted face pumpkins
DIY rainbow pumpkin arch
Pumpkin favor with leaf template

DIY Dried Flower Turkey Gourds

DIY Dried Flower Turkey Gourds

We have a really simple but beautiful DIY for you today—dried floral arrangements for your Thanksgiving Dinner. These are reminiscent of our gorgeous dried flower pumpkin DIY from a few weeks back, and just like that project, you can re-use these in the years to come! Once again, we used the beautiful preserved flower choices from Terrain and they were perfect! 

Unlike fresh flower arrangements (which we also love, naturally), these dried floral turkey gourds don’t need water to keep them looking great. This arrangement also isn’t specific to Halloween or Thanksgiving—you can keep it up all through autumn (and maybe winter too, if you’re already dreading the cold months and need something to remind you of slightly warmer days).

Dried Flowers

Did you know people used to think dried flowers represented bad luck? The tradition goes that dried flowers no longer have a “soul,” or “chi,” so they bring bad luck to your home. While we don’t quite follow this line of thinking, make sure to keep your dried flowers in a dry, temperature-controlled place to keep them from accumulating mold, mildew, or dust.

Where to Display Them

We like to put our dried flower arrangements as the table centerpiece, but how amazing would they look on a mantle? You could even put them in a windowsill so your neighbors can enjoy the autumn bounty.

Making the Dried Floral Turkey Gourds

Materials

  • Dried flowers (see above for exact links!)
  • gourds
  • glue gun
  • cardboard
  • spray paint

Instructions

  1. Cut out a piece of cardboard that fits behind the gourd. It should be a in a semi circle.
  2. Identify the center of the cardboard and start gluing the pieces starting from the outside and to the middl of the cardboard.
  3. Try different patterns with the florals for a unique pattern.
  4. For more depth and fullness, try different layers of cardboard in front of the other.

To display

  • Pin the cardboard into the back of the gourd. To separate out sprays with different layers, try using a sponge in between each layer.
  • If it’s a centerpiece, make sure you glue the back of the cardboard too.

Let us know if you make them by tagging us with #LarsMakes or #LarsGivesThanks

If you liked this project, I have a feeling that you’ll also like the following:

DIY succulent monogram pumpkins
Friendsgiving Tablescape
Origami Cornucopia

Easy Halloween Ideas From Our Shop

My ideal Halloween is playfully spooky, crafty, and (above all) easy, and there’s no such thing as too many easy Halloween ideas. If you’re looking for a fun, simple way to celebrate the season without turning your home into a Spirit Halloween storefront, read on for easy Halloween ideas!

Easy Halloween Decorations

This Haunted House makes a perfect Halloween centerpiece and conversation starter. You’ll make it from recycled cardboard boxes, which is a win for Planet Earth, and it’s beautiful enough to come back year after year, which is a win for you! Check out our blog post on it here.

Cardboard Haunted House for recycled holiday decor

If you love the spooky aspect of Halloween, check out this Vampire Teeth Garland. It’s creepy without being too macabre, and oh so easy.

DIY vampire teeth garland

Another slightly spooky and impeccably easy decor idea is this wooden transfer plaque template! I’m all for riding the line between pretty and creepy at Halloween, and these really fit the bill. Find the tutorial here.

wooden cross sections of branches with spiders and bugs transferred onto them hanging from maroon ribbons.

This painted pumpkin face template makes for such a fun, easy DIY! Give your porch some whimsy this Halloween by painting these sweet characters on your pumpkins. Read the tutorial here and get painting!

painted pastel pumpkin faces against a pink background

How many times can you say “pretty paper pumpkin project?” Whatever your answer, you should check out this template for rainbow paper pumpkins, along with this tutorial blog post. These make a beautiful, refined, seasonal table setting, they’ll look great for all of Autumn, not jus Halloween. A Thanksgiving comeback, anyone?

orange, gold, and yellow paper pumpkins on a table setting.

If you’re in a pinch and looking for quick decorations, don’t forget this post about last minute Halloween decor!

Easy Halloween Costume Ideas

There’s something to be said for a super intricate, detailed costume for sure. But even if you don’t have the time and energy to become a perfectly accurate storm trooper, dressing up doesn’t have to be out of your reach. Lots of our costume templates just require some simple clothing, some paper, and a prop or two. No professional costuming degree necessary!

Our Ruth Bader Ginsberg collar is maybe our simplest costume for adults. Just cut it out (a cricut or other cutting machine is helpful here), put it over a dark dress, and pull your hair back. Voilà! You’re ready to advocate for your sisters.

A white paper lace collar on a black background.

If you’ve been a Lars reader for more than about a minute you’ll know that I love flowers. So of course I wanted to dress up as a bouquet! Ha! Practice making some paper flowers for this Sweet Pea Paper Flower Bouquet costume (and read the tutorial here).

Brittany wearing a bouquet costume with paper flowers and a white paper wrapper against a green backdrop

Group costumes are always so fun, so pair your bouquet costume with greenhouse garb for a friend! This greenhouse costume uses cardboard and iron-on flowers, and is sure to turn heads. You can find the tutorial here.

a white woman with brown hair wears a green dress with iron on flowers, a greenhouse hat, and yellow clogs. She's holding flowers and a watering can.

Another cute Halloween costume for a pair of friends would be our beehive and picnic costumes. Both use an iron-on technique to make easy halloween costumes that are as cute as a bug. Find the tutorials here.

Brittany wears a gingham red dress with ants ironed onto it and holds a rattan picnic bag. a white woman wearing a yellow dress with iron-on bees, black gloves, a bee headband, and black shoes stands in front of a blue background.

This constellation costume with iron-on stars is absolutely dazzling. Honestly, you might as well break it out all year round because it’s that beautiful.

a blonde woman wearing an off-the-shoulder black jumpsuit with silvers stars all over it, sparkly makeup, and a spangled headband against a periwinkle background

For a subtle Halloween look, just print off our Pumpkin Crown and wear warm autumn tones.

Printable Pumpkin Crown

Easy Halloween Costumes for Kids

One of our most glamorous costumes with templates in the shop is our sun, cloud and rainbow set. This makes a great baby and mom costume, because you can add sun rays to a baby bonnet. I love how our model matched the baby’s outfit to her sling! With this costume you can invest as much or as little as you want. Just want the Sun and Rainbow headpiece? No problem. What about the Cloud Bag and Cloud Earrings? Done. Just want a sunny baby bonnet pattern? Your wish is our command. Make the costume just how you like it with this tutorial.

Rainbow costumeRainbow and sun mommy and me costume

This Giving Tree costume is another easy Halloween idea that you could make in a flash. And who doesn’t want to reference a classic children’s book in their costume? Find the tutorial here.

A mom wearing a green outfit with leaves and holding a felt apple bag stands next to her child in red overalls. They're dressed as the Giving Tree.

If you have a gaggle of children to costume, consider our Three Blind Mice baby costume pattern or our Crayon Hat template. Both are simple to put together and oh so sweet.

3 blind mice diy costume for kidsFour kids wearing crayon halloween costumes in orange, red, blue, and green.

Halloween Party Supplies

Even though gathering in big groups for Halloween parties is starting to look less and less likely (again 😔), you can still throw a Halloween party for your family, roommates, or pod! This Halloween Party Suite includes printable invitations, placemats, party tags, and place cards. Talk about easy Halloween ideas!

Halloween themed place cards.

Paper party goods with a halloween theme on a black background. They're orange, yellow, black, white, navy, and peach.

And for a party favor, try these printable poppers or printable Halloween candy gift boxes.

Halloween party poppersPrintable Halloween Candy Gift Box

These Halloween coupons make a fun halloween activity for your family. They’re a great way for parents to get their kids to relinquish some candy in return for fun activities.

halloween coupons in pink, red, blue, and black.

These illustrated Halloween cards are another great party favor because you can attach them to treat bags, trade them, send them as cards, or just hang them up.

Printable Halloween Cards

If your party is more freaky than funky, you might like this elegant invitation and Halloween dinner menu.

black and white illustrated halloween party invitation in a black decorative hadn surrounded by foliage and fruitsBlack and floral printable halloween menu

Party Food

Real talk here: what’s a party without cake? Use these printables and templates to make your Halloween cake extra fancy. The Spooky Town printable cake topper set is quaint and just a bit creepy, while this Black Birds cake topper is decidedly Hitchcock-approved. Red velvet cake makes it even more dramatic!

a colorful, cute printable cake topper set on a cake."The Birds" Cake Topper

If your fall party isn’t so Halloween-specific (or even if it is!) this Fall Leaf cake topper will add elegance and fun to the celebration.

DIY fall leaf cake topper

Looking for more cards, costumes, and decor? Search for Halloween on our blog! You’ll be blown away by the years of great, easy Halloween ideas and DIYs. If you’re interested in many of these ideas (who wouldn’t be!?), you can check out our E-Book, The Halloween that Lars Made. It’s a one-stop shop for easy Halloween ideas, DIYs, and projects.

How to Style Indoor Plants

How to style indoor plants

A lot of people want to transform their spaces into dreamy urban jungles, but don’t know how to style indoor plants. This can mean that their green spaces turn grey, end up looking cluttered, or gathering dust.

chinese money plant made from paper

Knowing how to style indoor plants can make a huge difference and give your plants all the impact they deserve. Here are my best plant styling tips!

Gauge your own commitment

Look. Your plant dreams won’t come true if you don’t choose plants that you can keep alive. Maybe you’re a big fan of ferns, but you live in a dry climate and don’t have it in you to water and spray a plant every day. 🙋🏼‍♀️ I know it hurts, but you might need to hold off on living with some higher-demand plants until you’re a more experienced plant parent. Know yourself and get plants that you can keep alive, because no matter how well-styled your plant kingdom is, it won’t look good if it’s dead.

Here are some of my favorite plants, and you can check out their care requirements to make sure that you’re signing up for something you can handle.

Light

Make sure that your plants have the correct amount of light for the species. Some thrive in the shade, some need bright light, and many plants do their best somewhere in between. You need to consider your space and the light before you even buy plants if you want a healthy indoor plantscape.

And of course, paper plants won’t die no matter what light you put them in, but remember that they might fade in bright light.

pre-potted plants Tranquility

Temperature

Unfortunately, lots of plant parents fail to consider a space’s temperature and are confounded when their plants keep dying. If you live somewhere with cold winters, avoid putting sensitive plants near drafty areas like doors or right by a window, especially when temperatures drop. And if your living space tends to be really hot and sunny, make sure that you don’t have sensitive, cool-loving plants in places where they’ll scorch and die. Again, if you’re working with paper plants, this isn’t an issue.

Paper heartleaf philodendron in bright green in a checkered pot on a wooden table

Water/Humidity

Some plants, like ferns and other tropicals, need more water and humidity than others (like succulents and cacti). If you have a plant that needs to be cared for and watered often, put it somewhere easily accessible so that watering doesn’t become a hassle.

If your bathroom has enough light, consider styling it with some humidity-loving plants. All the steam from your showers will make them thrive.

a variety of potted houseplants

Scale

When you’re designing your planty spaces, you don’t want to just have a lot of little plants scattered around. Choose one or two larger plants (indoor trees are great here!) and make these a focal point.

While big houseplants can be expensive, you can try making your own with paper (we have some great tutorials on the blog!) or check out our next tip for height help.

outdoor potted plants

Height

In an arrangement of plants, you want the tallest ones to be at the back. Think of them like a choir, with the tallest singers standing at the back. You can also give some plants a boost to add more height and give the illusion of larger plants. Try using shelves, bricks, blocks, an overturned flower pot, stacks of decorative books, and more to add some height to your plantscape.

planter garden with a sculptural head planter

Color

Indoor plants come in all kids of colors, not just green! Consider the colors and lighting in your space before you buy or make plants. If you plan it right, you can get beautiful, dramatic, intentional looks by curating your plant colors. Imagine a room with all deep purple foliage! So regal, right??

Paper Poinsettia Flower

Paper Plants

Like I’ve mentioned, I love paper plants for their ease and also because they’re a super fun craft! You can check out this paper plant video, these favorite tutorials, and these templates and ebooks from our shop. And don’t forget the flowers!

DIY Paper Japanese maple tree

Paper pansies on a windowsill. There's a white lacy curtain next to them, and red floral wallpaper on the other.

Once you’ve become a full-fledged plant parent, you might want to treat yourself with this Plant Lady print by Libby VanderPloeg from our shop.

What are your favorite plant tips? Let me know!

Nativity Craft Along

Christmas is a perfect time to join up with our community and do something fun together, so we dreamed up a craft along. After all, there’s no better time to get out your glue and paints than during the holidays! And what’s more classic and meaningful than a handmade gift? I definitely don’t know of anything.

Well, as the Lars team continued scheming and dreaming, our craft along plans got better and better, and now we’re SO EXCITED to make this Mid-Century Heirloom nativity craft along with you!

unpainted wooden angel figure from a midcentury nativity against a pink and red background

We’ve teamed up with a few celebrities and crafting heroes, and to be quite honest, I’m already starstruck. Like, let’s just say that I’m going to meet my childhood hero and that we’ll be wearing pink on Wednesdays from here on out. We’ll be releasing our star crafters through our mailing list (sign up here!), but I’d also love to hear your guesses in the comments. 😉

You’ll also be able to meet our star crafters through weekly Instagram Live events, where we’ll be working on a character from the nativity every week.

Heirloom Nativity

So what’s a craft along?

A craft along is a way of building community with your fellow crafters while all working on the same (or a similar) project. Our nativity craft along is a perfect opportunity to get ready for Christmas (because we all know that it sneaks up on us every year) and get to know your Lars community a bit better. We’ll all be making a midcentury heirloom nativity together, and it’s going to be so lovely! Even though summer’s still on its way out, we wanted to jump into our handmade holiday plans early because this is a project that you’ll want to begin waay in advance. Get a head start on your handmade holidays and join in the fun with this nativity craft along!

Crafting with a cause

As I’ve mentioned in these two essays, I recently partnered with Nest and I’m now part of their advisory board. I really believe in Nest’s mission to support woman makers in the global economy, and I’m so grateful to be part of their amazing work. We’ve set the very exciting goal to raise $50,000 for Nest through this nativity craft along, and we’re doing it in three ways:

  1. Ebook sales: for each ebook sold, we’re donating $5 (with an option for you to donate even more at checkout).
  2. Donations: we’ll collect donations during Instagram Live events with our famous crafters (think a 21st century twist on a classic fundraising telethon). During these Instagram Live events you’ll get to know some of your favorite crafty celebrities a bit better, and you can work on your heirloom nativity alongside them and me! Doesn’t that sound dreamy? You can donate to Nest over here!
  3. Auction: After all these Instagram Live crafting sessions we’ll auction off our two completed midcentury nativities! There will be one made by me and one made by our favorite crafting celebs, and all the money we raise by auctioning them will go to Nest.  So even if you’re not a big fan of crafting, you can get your own gorgeous heirloom midcentury nativity (and it just might come with some star power).

Heirloom Nativity

However you do it, your participation in this nativity craft along will help us reach our fundraising goal and help Nest support woman artisans all over the world.

Make Your Own Heirloom Nativity!

Years ago when we first released our Midcentury Nativity project, we used a combination of vintage, found, and purchased wooden pieces. While I love the way our old set looks, it’s impossible to replicate exactly. That can be so frustrating! So this year we’ve worked hard to come up with an excellent set of wooden pieces that you can buy to make your nativity match with ours. If you buy these materials, your pieces will also align just right with the templates we made in our ebook! Convenience and unity for the win!

unpainted wooden finials and candlesticks in the form of wooden nativity characters

You can find all the materials we used over in the e-book including the specific wood pieces for the right combinations.

Here are the colors we are using for the set:

unpainted wooden wise man figurine from a nativity set against a pink and red striped background

To get templates and tips you can download our ebook!

Follow Along

The best way to stay on top of all our craft along content by following us on Instagram and subscribing to the newsletter. Now enter the giveaway, order your materials, and let’s get crafting!

baby Jesus unpainted wooden figure on a pink and red striped background

Looking for more nativity projects? If you love this, you’ll also love our DIY nativity puppets, this clothespin nativity, and this nesting doll DIY.

A Lars Girl’s Back to School Guide

I put together a back to school themed roundup of my favorite school supplies and dorm essentials, so if I can’t start a new semester in a few weeks at least I can shop as if I were!

Colorblocked lunch sacks and beeswax snack wraps surrounded by play fruit and blackberries.

Lars-Approved School Supplies

If you look at them the right way, school supplies are the educational version of craft supplies. At least I get excited about them as if they were. Here are my current favorites!

I also put together a list of my current favorite laptop covers and stickers, which you can see here. Another great addition to your back to school supply list is this DIY beeswax wrap and this reusable lunch sack.

My friend Michele Brummer Everett designed these back to school stickers, and they’d be the perfect addition to your water bottle, notebook, or laptop.

back to school stickers on notebooks

Dorm Room Design

In the college town where I live, the end of August means lots of new students being dropped off at dorms for their first-ever foray into living outside their parents’ house. That means that there are LOTS of fresh-faced students moving into drab, depressing dorm rooms and shabby apartments. Check out this post full of rental-friendly interior design hacks to level up your space. And here are my favorite additions to any student housing situation:

If you’re looking for more dorm inspiration, check it out here and here.

Any time you buy something from our affiliate links, we get a small commission at no cost to you! Hooray!

Becoming Loria Stern

In 2011, Loria Stern started attending adult education classes entitled “Medicinal and Edible Plants” where she learned about foraging and the power of plant medicine. She started combining her culinary skills with the knowledge she was learning about botanicals. All the while she was posting her bespoke creations on Instagram. In 2016 her work was highlighted in Vogue Magazine and she received over 30,000 followers overnight. Fans were asking where they could purchase her treats so she started selling them on her website. The first day she posted her treats, she received over 20 orders. Since that day, her business has grown into a successful baking operation where she employs 4 helpers with living wages. She’s still growing her business, writing a cookbook and pitching a TV show. Exciting things are in store for this hardworking woman!

Loria is wearing a floral dress and standing in a kitchen surrounded by colorful produce.

Meet Loria Stern

What do you consider yourself? Example: Artist, designer, illustrator, maker, baker, business person, educator, etc.?

Well, I consider myself all of these things but more so one than the other depending on what day of the week we’re talking about. I would say I started out as an artist and maker, and then became a baker and now my daily tasks are more of a business person and educator. 

Where did you grow up? Were there aspects of your childhood that have influenced what you do now? 

I grew up in Ojai, CA, a small quaint town nestled in between large mountains but just a 20 minute drive to the beach. The town had a lot of nature–my childhood neighborhood streets were lined with tall oak trees. There was and still is a huge element of health consciousness and spirituality in Ojai and I think those elements absolutely influenced what I do now and the person I’ve become. 

Loria stands with her back to the camera. She's surrounded by fresh cut flowers and she's wearing a straw hat, and there are misty mountains in the background.

What did you dream of becoming when you were younger? 

Of course I wanted to be a professional tennis player! That dream ended around 14 years old and then I wanted to be an artist. I guess that dream has come true except through a different medium (culinary arts vs. the visual arts).

Rolled out cookie dough with colorful pressed flowers pressed onto each round circle of dough.

Is there a person who has been influential in your chosen career path? 

Not really one single person, but more so a number of different friends who loved eating the foods I cooked and baked for them and encouraged me to follow this path.

What sparked your interest in edible flowers? 

I’ve always loved flowers (who doesn’t?!) but it wasn’t until I started learning about the medicinal properties of botanicals in my 3 semesters of the adult education classes that my love for combining edible flowers + botanicals with cooking and baking, really opened up an entire new craft for me. 

Rolled out cookie dough with colorful pressed flowers pressed onto each round circle of dough.Brightly colored flowers pressed onto sugar cookies on a wooden background.

What are three words to describe your style? 

Creative, happy and cool.

What is your educational background and how has it shaped or changed your current career? 

I graduated with a BA from college and spent my last year painting and drawing. I was in an art show in my final year of college and sold several pieces. As noted earlier, I also took 3 semesters of adult education classes post college– “Medicinal + Edible Plants” and learned a lot about treating ailments naturally with wild, edible plants. I also attribute my dedication as a competitive tennis player to my strong work ethic, which I think is the most important aspect of my current success. 

Loria sits cross-legged on a teal blanket surrounded by pressed flowers in books and a cup of tea.

Have you ever made a big career switch? If so, what prompted that? Are there aspects of a prior career that you incorporate into what you do now? 

I did not really have a career after graduating college in 2006–I more so worked a bunch of odd jobs to pay the rent–teaching tennis, nannying, working as an assistant, etc. It was not until 2010 when I worked my first job as a prep chef that I really learned my love for the culinary arts and that I wanted to make this a career.

What inspired you to become a baker/florist/gardener? 

My love for nature, working with my hands and discovering new alchemic combinations.

Brightly-colored flowers pressed onto green matcha cookie dough.

What is one piece of work that you are especially proud of and why? 

I love making tall tiered wedding cakes and delivering them to the venue. It is always so rewarding.

Tall wedding cake frosted with white frosting and purple and yellow flowerscake frosted with blush pink frosting with purple, yellow, and white pansies pressed onto it. It's styled in a pink draping fabric with a vase of flowers.

Where do you find inspiration for new creations? 

In nature first and foremost. 

How do you make social connections in the creative realm? 

Many via Instagram, I’ve met some of my best friends and have found a beautiful, supportive community of my work there.

What artists and creatives do you look up to, both historical and present? 

Gah, there are so so many! Truly too hard to just pinpoint a few.

Horizontal photo of Loria wearing a floral dress and holding a tray of baked cookies. Flowers are pressed onto the top of each one.

What books, movies, shows, or music are making you excited these days? 

My father was a jazz clarinetist and music pervades much of my childhood. I love all types of music and have found there is a time and a place for every genre of music. I love documentaries and listening to podcasts. But I try to stay away from negative media as it definitely affects my mood.

What is a piece of advice that you have carried with you and who is it from? Do you have a personal motto? 

Work hard and always do your best. Hold yourself and others accountable. Treats others how you’d want to be treated.

Horizontal photo of Loria measuring sugar into a yellow mixing bowl. She's in a kitchen and surrounded by flowers and a turquoise kitchenade mixer

What is your workspace like? Has it changed at all since the beginning of the pandemic last year? 

I moved to Los Angeles from Santa Barbara just one month before the pandemic began. I had to find a new commercial kitchen and employees within that time and it was extremely difficult to say the least. Looking back, I feel so grateful for the commercial baking space and my LA helpers. 

Loria stands in a field of zinnias wearing a white dress and a straw hat. She's holding a basket full of flowers.

How do your surroundings influence your work? 

So much. I realized I am creatively motivated by my physical space. I love natural light and need to be close to nature. 

Loria bends down to pick wildflowers in a meadow. She's wearing a white dress and a straw hat.

Describe some habits that keep you motivated and productive. How do you climb out of a creative slump? 

Exercise is always a good idea and I have found it to be the number one cure for all sorts of slumps. 

What is a typical day like for you? 

I enjoy waking up early. I drink coffee first thing in the morning, then I’ll mosey around my backyard garden with coffee in hand. I’ll stroll up to my home office, check business and personal emails, and then the day is off and running. I usually pick edible botanicals from my garden then meet my team at the bakery. We start cranking our baking orders and then before I know it, it’s 6pm! Then I’ll come home, meet up with my boyfriend and we’ll cook dinner and watch a show.

Loria decorating a pan of focaccia with flowers and vegetables. She's shaped them into a floral scene.

What advice would you give to someone who wants to self-teach a new hobby or skill?

To learn as much as you can about the hobby / skill. There is so much readily available information that one can learn online that school is not necessary as long as there is curiosity, dedication and a strong work ethic.

Loria standing at the head of a banquet table full of food and flowers. It is sunset and there are mountains in the background.

Do you have a secret talent? What is one skill that you are working on? 

I’d say tennis is my secret talent for those who are just meeting me now! Otherwise, I’m working on learning how to surf but it’s extremely hard!

Two pans of botanical cookies with pressed flowers. The ones on the top are a vanilla shortbread and the ones on the bottom are pink.

Nobody likes to talk about it, but can you share any advice regarding financing your business? 

Gah, I am still trying to figure that out. I have not accepted investment from outside sources however am currently looking into it to grow my business!

A plate of baked floral shortbread stacked up. In the background there are lots of flowers scattered.

Is there anything more you would like to “become?” 

I’d like to become more well-traveled. I want to visit Japan, India, Thailand, Vietnam, Sweden, and the list continues! I want to visit these places and learn about new ingredients and cooking techniques and share those with an audience so that they can live on and evolve into our current day’s food. 

A film photograph of Loria walking away from the camera through a field of wildflowers. She's wearing a white dress and a straw hat and there are trees and mountains in the background.

What do you hope to accomplish within the next 10 years? 

First and foremost, I hope to remain healthy! Secondly, I hope to open up a physical commissary kitchen with a retail space, classroom and on-site edible flower garden so that I can teach my botanical infused culinary arts to the greater community. There is so much information that I find so inspiring and interesting, I am sure others will as well.

Loria sitting on a bed with teal bedding and flowers in a bowl. She's wearing a beige jumpsuit and there's low, moody lighting.

Can’t get enough of Loria Stern?

We don’t blame you! Follow Loria’s work on her Instagram @LoriaStern and don’t forget to check out her website, where you can buy her delicious, beautiful creations!

Years ago we wrote a post about using edible flowers, and I hope that this interview with Loria Stern makes you even more excited to incorporate beautiful botanicals into your meals (like this edible flower pot).

Read more Becoming interviews here to keep the inspiration flowing!

Loria walking through a meadow of flowers wearing a white dress and a straw sun hat. She's holding a basket of flowers and the sky is blue.

All photos are courtesy of Loria Stern.

NEW! Jungalow for Opalhouse by Target

  1. Blue terracotta vase
  2. Rattan desk
  3. Yellow scallop pillow case
  4. Cute pink and tan vessel
  5. Jungalow: Decorate Wild book by Justina Blakeney
  6. Throw pillow
  7. Throw Blanket
  8. Scallop duvet
  9. Bolster pillow
  10. Floral sheets

Justina is truly the most go-gettery of all go-getters. I’ve always admired her commitment to her art (she paints every morning to warm up! I’ve been wanting to do this for ages!), and focus on getting better and better. She’s created a beautiful brand with commitment to the environment and providing resources for people to capture her look. I’m so proud of you Justina!

Find Justina here:

You can read more about Justina in our interview here.
Jungalow website
Jungalow for Target

Interior Design Trend: Favorite Spoonflower Artists

Wallpaper is one of my favorite interior design trends–though can we really call it a trend if it’s been around for so long? Either way, wallpaper is in and here to stay and I’m so glad because–COLOR and PATTERN! It opens up so many possibilities in a space, and it’s doable as a DIY.

You’ve probably seen me use Spoonflower wallpapers (and fabrics!) before, like in my old master bedroom makeover, this summery tablescape, a fabric-covered lampshade, and most recently this DIY duffel bag picnic blanket tote. And while I can’t say more now, keep your eyes peeled for some more Spoonflower fun coming up soon. 😉

Lamp customized with spoonflower fabric from Holli Zollinger against a wildflower covered wall.

Favorite Spoonflower Artists

I’ve made it super easy for you to get to these artists’ work–just click on their name or their artworks to be instantly transported to their shops!

Holli ZollingerHolli Zollinger fabrics on Spoonflower

I haven’t done the math but I’m thinking Holli might be the most prolific artist on Spoonflower. She has over 3700 designs and they’re all good! She has more of a boho flair intermixed with some more French-inspired styles. I think she’s open to customizing them too if you ever need it! I’ve used a number of her patterns like on this lamp. And stay tuned for our upcoming office makeover! You can see some of my favorite Holli designs in our collection here.

Helen P Designs

favorite spoonflower designers

I picked out a few Helen P Designs for our office makeover like this oranges above. I think it would also make a great dress!

Design by MLagsfavorite designers on Spoonflower

I’m in LOVE with these gorgeous moody florals from MLags!

Modern Colorist

If some of these look familiar from our DIY duffle bag picnic blanket tote, that’s because these are my sister’s designs!

My sister has done freelance pattern work and in-house pattern work for a number of companies and she’s so good. She’s put past patterns into her Spoonflower shop.

Mandy England

I thought this floral would be fun for a girl’s room or something!

Willow Lane Designs


Designs by Kelly Attenborough


Designs by Muhlenkott


Peacoquette

If you’re a big fan of William Morris, Peacoquette’s Spoonflower shop is the place to find William Morris-inspired wallpaper designs (and more). Also, I just noticed that she has over 4500 designs! She wins the contest!  William Morris inspired designs.
Das Brooklyn

 

Crumpets and Crabsticks

Designs by Kate Rhees


Ramarama


Melissa Hyatt Fabrics
Fern Leslie Studio


Forest and SeaAugust Croft


DomesticateDanika Herrick

We used Danika’s Citrus Grove Toile for our Mother’s Day tablescape last year so it’s a personal favorite. 

Lana Red Studio

Lana Red’s designs are geared toward fabric and home decor over wallpaper, but I couldn’t resist showing you her work anyway.

Katie Kortman

Katie is a friend of Lars. She even was a featured artist in Picture Hope Coloring Book. She makes the coolest clothes with her self-designed fabrics. You can take a look at them here on her Instagram.

Mia Maria

Mia has some awesome stripes and plaids that would be so fun for clothing and upholstery projects. They’ve got my mind racing!

Julia Schumacher

I LOVE her blues!

Lily Oake

Really dainty and feminine florals and perfect accent ginghams and stripes.

Atelier Dorina

Spoonflower collections

One of my favorite things to do with Spoonflower is to add all my favorite designs to my “favorites” folder. And then if I’m working on a specific project, I like to make a folder and all the patterns I’m considering for it in there. You can see some of my collections here:

Your Favorite Interior Design Trends

Are you a fellow pattern lover? Do you have a favorite interior design trend? Let me know in the comments, and don’t forget to share your interior design photos with me on Instagram with #LarsAtHome.

All You Need for A Midsummer Party

Even those of us not in Sweden can throw a Midsummer party to celebrate long days, the bounty of beauty in our gardens, and good food. Lucky for us, I have made lots of Midsummer-themed projects so we can have the Midsummer party of our dreams without dishing out for a plane ticket!

Midsummer Parties Past

women dressed in white dance around a DIY maypole in a green park with dappled light. A blonde woman in a white dress holds a small bouquet.

Years ago I celebrated Midsummer by dressing up and dancing around a maypole with my team, and it was truly magical. You can see more photos here.

women dressed in white dance around a DIY maypole in a green park with dappled light.

The next year I teamed up with my friend and designer extraordinaire Meta Coleman, Merrilee of Mer Mag, Sarah of Sarah Jane Studios, Melanie and Alma of Caravan Shoppe, and Eva of Sycamore Co to organize a huge Midsummer party. We called it A Midsummer Mingle and it was epic, if I do say so myself.

Women dressed in white descend stairs in a green space filled with dappled light.women dressed in white eat on a picnic blanket. In the background, a maypole stands in front of some pine trees. It's dusk.

You can find out more about it here, here and here. Wasn’t it beautiful?

Two women in white wearing floral crowns smile at the camera. It's night and the background is distantly lit with warm light. A woman in white wearing a white floral crown hangs up a picture on a clothesline

Now let me level with you. Both of those Midsummer parties were stunning and magical, and you might be feeling a little bit overwhelmed right about now. Take a deep breath. Remember that I had help on both projects, as should all party planners, and you don’t have to be a professional to throw a gorgeous Midsummer party. You can do it! No matter how low-key or extravagant you want your party to be, I have Midsummer tutorials and inspiration to knock your flower crown off.

Women in white wearing flower crowns hold hands and walk in a line in front of some pine trees.

Midsummer Projects

Maypole

Brittany is wearing white and dancing around a DIY maypole with her interns, who are also wearing white.

I made a maypole for the Midsummer Party with my interns, and I know what you’re thinking: “You made a maypole?!” It was a surprisingly simple DIY that I know you can make too.  Once you’ve made a maypole, you’ll have the backbone of your Midsummer celebrations taken care of for years to come! Again, find the tutorial here.

Flower Crowns

Flower crowns are a Midsummer staple, and Amy from Amy Anne Floral made these gorgeous and simple Midsummer Flower Crowns for the Midsummer Mingle.

Goldenrod flower crown from Midsummer Mingle. A woman in a white dress holds it against her side. waxflower and laurel flower crowns are stacked in a pile.

There’s also this Crepe Paper Flower Crown and this one, this Shamrock Flower Crown, these Lady Liberty-inspired Flower Crowns, this Printable Flower Crown, and this tutorial for a Flower Crown Inspired by Art History.

A little girl wears a paper flower crown and smells some little flowers.a floral crown on long, straight brown hairA little girl with brown hair wears a paper shamrock crown and a cream colored floral blouse. The background is bold colored wallpaper.Lady Liberty Flower CrownsA printable flower crown in purple, yellow, pink, white red, and blue being held up by two hands. A woman wearing a lavish flower crown of dahlias and berries and greenery looks at the camera. The background is sky blue.

Midsummer Decorations

You won’t want to skip out flowers for your Midsummer party. Use this tutorial to make gorgeous floral arrangements that you can place around in vases or hold as bouquets.

Pink florals from A Midsummer Mingle

This paper Summer Flower Garland would look lovely draping between the trees or wrapped around your may pole. Because it’s made of paper you can keep it for next year’s Midsummer party.

Summer Paper Flower Garland

Speaking of paper flowers, I’ve compiled lots and lots of paper flower tutorials in one place here. These would be great for arrangements, cake decorations, or to wear.

Paper parrot tulips in cream, yellow, and red.Paper peony bouquet held by a person in a striped dressIcelandic Paper PoppyPaper hydrangeas in a white vase against a floral orange backgroundThe Exquisite Book of Paper Flower Transformations

For a decoration that you’ll want to keep hanging after the season changes, make this Midsummer Dala Horse Mobile. It will remind you of your delightful Midsummer party and be a great conversation starter!

Close up of a colorful chandelier with a hanging Dala horse is i A colorful chandelier with a hanging Dala horse is i

Finishing Touches

No party is complete without music, and your Midsummer party is no exception. My friend Melissa Leavitt graciously agreed to make this Midsummer playlist, and I think you’ll love it.

Brittany and her friends smile at the camera. It's dark and in the background, there are warm lights.

If you serve cake (and when do we ever not want to serve cake!?) this Midsummer Pole Cake Topper is perfect for the occasion.

Midsummer Pole cake Topper Midsummer Pole cake Topper

Food

Look, you know that I don’t cook. Still, your Midsummer party will need food. Go traditional with pickled herring, boiled potatoes, grilled meat, and strawberries and cream for desert. For those who imbibe, Midsummer is also an opportunity to drink beer and schnapps, but as a non-drinker I’ve found that fizzy lemonade does the trick, too. Smaklig måltid (bon appetit in Swedish)!

strawberry-covered layer cakes on pastel cakestands at an outdoor party

Glad Midsommar!

I would love to see your Midsummer celebrations! Tag me in your photos with #MidsummerWithLars.

women dressed in white dance around a DIY maypole in a green park with dappled light. A graphic that says Midsummer celebration is at the top.

How to press flowers in 3 methods

I’m so excited to share this tutorial on how to press flowers with Beci Orpin, one of the most inspiring creatives I know. She’s an artist and illustrator who makes incredible crafts, and I feel lucky to get to share some of her expertise with you.

Press Flowers with Beci

I am an avid collector of many things, but old books are one of my favourites – I rarely walk out of an op shop without one. Quirky typesetting and old-school printing aside, one of the things I love about second-hand books is the chance of discovering a little surprise inside them. I’ve found many treasures tucked inside those yellowing, musty pages, including some flattened Easter-egg wrappers from the 1940s, a birthday note from an aunt to a favourite niece and, best of all, several books containing some beautiful pressed flowers.

When I was a child I used to press flowers with my grandma, and I remember never having enough patience to wait the weeks and weeks before the flowers were completely dried and pressed. Luckily for me, while I was researching this project, I discovered that there are several methods of pressing flowers, some of which allow you to cheat, so you don’t have to wait forever and ever before they are ready. This is good news for me, as I still have as much patience as a five-year-old.

Sunshine Spaces by Beci OrpinYOU WILL NEED:

  • flowers/foliage: ones with flat petals are best (see a list here. I like pansies, geraniums, flowering weeds – anything pretty and dainty
  • book/iron/microwave: what you use will depend on which method you choose.
  • paper or a card: try blotting paper, coffee filter paper, printer paper, several layers of tissue paper

NOTES:

  1. Flowers should preferably be freshly picked, to prevent browning.
  2. Don’t pick your flowers too early in the morning, as they will still have dew on them. The extra moisture from the dew may cause them to go mouldy during the pressing process.
  3. Flowers should have just bloomed or be about to bloom. If they are too mature, they will lose their petals.
  4. If the flowers have obvious stamens, remove them before pressing.

Method 1, Pressing in a book:

(This is the easiest but slowest method; I found it produced the best results.)

Open up your book and place a sheet of paper on one side of the book. Liquid from the flowers can leach into the surrounding pages, so use an old book or several sheets of paper to prevent this. TIP: Don’t use a phone book, as the paper is too flimsy.

Arrange your flowers on the piece of paper, making sure the flowers aren’t overlapping (unless you want them to). Cover with another piece of paper (or fold the first piece of paper in half) and close the book.

Weight down the book by placing some heavy books or bricks on top of it.

Change the papers after 1 week, then leave for a few more weeks until the flowers are completely dry. Try to resist the temptation to check them (unless changing the paper), as this can disturb the flowers.Sunshine Spaces by Beci Orpin

Method 2, Ironing:

Flatten the flowers between pieces of paper in a book, following steps 1–3 (left). Leave the flowers to dry for however long you can manage (I recommend at least 1 day). Empty any water out of the iron (you don’t want any steam), and set the heat to the lowest setting.

Remove the flowers from the book, leaving them sandwiched between the two pieces of paper, and press them with the iron for 10–15 seconds. You don’t need to move the iron around, just press it on the paper.

Method 3, Microwave:

Arrange the flowers in the book between two pieces of paper, following steps 1–2 (left). Make sure that your book has no metal in the spine or type before putting it in the microwave. Place in the microwave and zap for 30 seconds. Take the book out and let it cool by opening the pages to let the steam out (don’t open the pages that have the flowers enclosed). TIP: Have a couple of books on the go at once, so you can have one heating in the microwave while the other one is cooling down.

Once the book is cool, zap it in the microwave again. Repeat until the flowers are almost dry (you may need to do this about four or five times: smaller flowers will dry out quicker), taking care you don’t overcook them, as the flowers will turn brown.

What To Do With Pressed Flowers

Learning to press flowers is just the beginning! Once you’ve pressed your flowers there are so many great crafts you can do with them.

Adding pressed flowers to a handmade card or invitation adds a whimsical touch. You can also place pressed flowers between two sheets of glass and then frame them for a garden-inspired wall decoration, as pictured here.

Sunshine Spaces by Beci Orpin

This gorgeous pressed flower tray made by Jessica Pezalla of Bramble Workshop is an unexpected and delightful project to make the color from your garden last.

And don’t forget about pressing flowers when next Easter comes around! Then you can use our tutorial for dried flowers on Easter eggs. The possibilities are limitless.

Another floral project I love is this DIY flower pounding on fabric. It makes such beautiful design and the way the flowers transfer their color is delightful.

Sunshine Spaces by Beci Orpin

If you use this tutorial to press flowers, I would love to see what you make! Share with us with the hashtag #LarsFlowerMonth.

You can purchase Sunshine Spaces here 

Keep reading! See more of our book recommendations here.

Photography by Chris Middleton  |  Book by Beci Orpin 

Sunshine Spaces by Beci Orpin