Simple (ie: Cheap) DIY Valentine’s Day Heather Hearts + Dried Flower Pots

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The day of Hearts & Flowers is almost upon us! These sweet little Heather Hearts are fast, easy and cheap to make. Hang them on a door, stick them in a pot, or wherever you want to show the love. All you need are a couple stems of fresh heather (the longer the better) and a little raffia or thin ribbon.

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Start by overlapping the ends at an angle and winding the raffia (or ribbon) around the crossed bit, side to side and up and down. Tie it off securely.

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Then tie one end of a long piece of raffia at the base and wind it around the stem of heather, not too tight, just enough to hold the side branches in a little. Tie it off about 3″ from the top end. Repeat on the other stem.

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Next, cross the tops over each other where the raffia wraps ended and tie together. Add a longer piece of raffia to tie to the bottom of the heart. BE CAREFUL NOT TO BREAK THE STEMS! I did on one of my hearts, and well, it looks funny. Pull down gently. And you’re done!

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Cuteness. These will dry in place pretty well, but be warned, they will drop some leaves. I used my hearts as centerpieces to my outdoor pots.

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All year I save and dry the flowers I buy for the house when they are no longer suitable for fresh vases. (Not all flowers dry well. The ones with woody stems, like hydrangea and roses, dry best.)

Here’s what I had accumulated:

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I stuck the heather hearts in the middle, and started adding the dried flowers around them with the taller stuff in back. I just stick them right in the dirt. (Dried flowers are fun to use here in Denver this time of year when it’s still too cold to put anything living outside.)

The funny-looking heart is the one where I broke the stems by bending them too far. Don’t do that!

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And here they are all done:

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More fun Valentine’s Day fun & weirdness to come. FOLLOW THE BLOG and you won’t miss a thing!

Recycling Halloween into Thanksgiving, Part 2…Outdoor Decor Redo for Zero Dollars

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Fall, Part Deux! As I said in the last Thanksgiving post, because I go a bit over the top for Halloween and Xmas, I like to chill things out a bit in between and go for a simpler look. It took me about an hour to “recycle” Halloween into Thanksgiving out front. Here’s what I did:

BEFORE: (Halloween in full force)

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I removed everything distinctly Halloween: all the black and orange, along with the crows, lights, spooky eyes, and carved pumpkins. What was left was the faux Fall foliage and “whole” (un-carved) faux pumpkins. I added some silk sunflowers I snagged from the Goodwill a couple years ago, as well as a large dried grapevine wreath separated into 4 pieces.

AFTER:

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The pots out in front were the easiest. The faux Fall leaves (originally from the thrift store) stayed in the pots. I just removed the crows and added a few silk sunflowers. (It’s too cold here already for live outdoor plants, (low of 25 tonight!) so faking it is the best we can do.)

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The two pots on the stoop were much the same, a bit of faux fall leaves wrapped around the top, a faux pumpkin (all the pumpkins are also from the thrift store for a couple bucks apiece) plopped in the middle, (no real pumpkins possible here, the ravenous squirrel army would be munching on them within minutes) and a section of dried grapevine wreath added on top. I purchased the grapevine wreath from the floral wholesaler for about $35, and have been reusing it for many years now. You will be able to find these at most hobby shops as well. With a little care they will last for many many years. (I store mine in the garden shed when not in use.)

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Next to the door, the column gets the same leaf-&-pumpkin treatment.

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The table on the other side of the door (patiently awaiting a new paint job) is just a pile of dried gourds, also left over from Halloween.

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The far end of the porch got a nice dried flower arrangement. Dried flowers are a great choice for a covered outdoor area, just make sure they don’t get wet. During the year I dry all my old flowers from indoor arrangements so I can do a few of these outside in the Fall. These dried flowers are just stuck right in the dirt in one of the pots from the garden. The old magnolia wreath laying under the pot has seen better days (I’ve had it for about 5 years) and is no longer suitable to hang on the door, but it works great here on the table. Drying your older fresh flowers is easy. Just put a few together, use a rubber band or twist tie around the bottoms of the stems, and hang them upside down in a dry, out of the way spot. Most flowers will dry well, especially those with woody stems like roses and hydrangea. Flowers like carnations and mums, not so much.

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And that’s it! A sweet and simple Fall decor design for the front yard that cost zippedy-do-dah dollars. Now I get to relax for a couple weeks, before getting all loco again for Xmas/Hanukkah/New Year’s…