Storybook Stairway Inspiration

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Stairways are a popular image in stories because they can act as a passage to infinite possibility. They can lead to amazing wonders just beyond their steps, and be the door to dangerous secrets as well. These “bridges” can be as magical in real life as they are in fables. Creating beautiful stairs is an unexpected way to revamp your decor because they are often overlooked in homes. If you want to make your stairways more magical, here are a few of our favorite storybook staircases!97a30f8ad82f55091ee659f8f6dfea0f

This terrifying, enclosed staircase looks like it will take you into another realm as soon as you step inside!

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There is nothing more romantic than a beautiful winding staircase.

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This stairway looks like an extension of the tree that appears to be growing out of the ground!

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Sometimes all you need to really make a difference is a little bit of pattern!

DIY: PomPom Placemats

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Summer is all about having fun, seeing friends and family, going on adventures and bright, bright colors! Embrace the summer spirit by introducing some fun onto your dinner table with these pompom placemats we’ve created. They add the perfect amount of pizzazz to your summer table, and are great for using when entertaining friends!

Materials for Pom Pom Fringe Placemat What You’ll Need:

Placemats

3/8” Pom Pom Fringe

E6000

ScissorsMeasuring Pompom Trim for Placemat1. Lay your pom pom fringe against one side of your placemat, and cut to fit.

Gluing Fringe onto Placemat2. Place a line of glue going down the edges of the placemat, and glue down your trim.

3. Repeat on all sides.

Finished Pompom Placemat

Dinner Party Hosting Tips

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This is the perfect time to hold a seasonal summer dinner party, but hosting your own party can cause a lot of stress. Make sure all of your bases are covered with these tips! e1957243fba2ed0935f350e6c4b7712f

Eating by Candlelight – If you want to introduce candles into your party decor, keep them unscented. The focus should be on the delicious food, not the coconut vanilla scent of your pillar candles, as delicious as it is!

Keep Them Short – Centerpieces should be small and short so that guests have the ability to see each other over the table. You can always showcase taller arrangements on separate tables.c8bed08de87a1c7cc2b4d761c39110f5 (1)

All You Can Eat – Buffet-style dinner parties are all the rage. Why? Everyone gets just what they want, and it’s easy to do!

In the Know – Make sure you check to see if your guests have any serious dietary restrictions. eda8c54d547f92d72e7d75bc34ceffb2

Savory Seasonals – Try to base your menu off what is in season. The ingredients will be at their most flavorful, and the least expensive.

 

 

DIY Summer Centerpieces

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We may be a month or so through summer, but our love for summer parties has not waned! One of our favorite aspects of the summer party, aside from seeing family and friends, is, of course, the decorations. We love the look of a simple centerpiece at the table, whether it is a vase of blooming flowers or a bowl of strategically arranged fruit! 692ebef56726070fbc38bbd853316e05We love the bright colors of these simple centerpieces from Delighted Magazine’s Summer 2013 Issue!

summer-centerpiece-4.jpg-682x1024This simple floral centerpiece Like a Saturday captures the effortless style of summer, since everything is so beautiful this season, decorating takes practically no effort!

citronella-candle-4This citronella centerpiece candle from Adventures in Making is both practical AND beautiful. You’ll be throwing out those tiki torches without a second thought!

IMG_0494Who says single buds can’t be just as captivating as a mixed arrangement? Definitely not us, especially when they’re showcased in such a unique way by Hello Bee!

IMG_3906-600Succulents are all the rage right now, and make a great centerpiece for a beachy summer party! Take a look at how Home Depot made this sweet succulent centerpiece.

ST_DIY_Ombre_Colored_Sand13Who knew that even sand could get the ombre treatment? Check out the cool summer candle centerpiece they created over at Something Turquoise!

 

 

Rustic Summer Tablescape Inspiration

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When it comes to summer dining, we prefer the casual, rustic approach. The effortless style pairs so well with carefree energy of the season, and we love the mix of natural, earthy elements and florals for a look that isn’t too feminine but also has just the right dash of “pretty”. 544ce6e62aca81f8c8468c8f1bb90ffb

 

Molly Sims wedding photo by Gia Canali - some dinner guests dine

One staple of a rustic dining experience is wooden acccents. A wooden table makes for a great backdrop for bold, beautiful blooms.

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This style also features a lot of greenery. Flowers aren’t the only centerpieces. Leaves and branches play an essential role as well!

tumblr_mlgrdzDpnC1rrqsx6o1_500A rustic-style table is the perfect backdrop for a fresh summer meal!

Fashion Illustrations Too

We’re back with another round of fashion illustrations we adore to help inspire all of the fashionistas and DIYers out there! These beautiful illustrations capture the magic of fashion almost as well as the actual pieces do. Here are a few of our recent favorites!

 

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Antionio Soares brought life to this Kenzo dress with a little bit of animation!il_570xN.496341162_n5h2

Esther Bayer captured the undeniable magic of the perfect lipstick with this illustration of a Tom Ford lipstick.

Cecilia Carlstedt

 

This watercolor by Cecilia Carlstedt shows the unique effect you can get by painting wet on wet. The results are phenomenal!

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Jessica Durrant’s Dior illustration has us weak at the knees with it’s fluffy ombre dress and strategically-placed beauty mark!

 

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Laura Laine is a Helsinki-based fashion illustrator who has worked with brands like H&M and Sephora. We love the mix of pencil and marker in this piece.

DIY Summer Sandals 3 Ways

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Summer is synonymous with sandals, which is all we’ve been wearing since June 21st! We’ve been seeing a lot of simple sandal styles as well as more elaborate ones, but sometimes those trendy sandals can cost a little more than you bargained for. Here are three of our favorite ways to “step up” your sandal game without breaking your budget.

Chained-Sandals

8mm Beaded Snake Chain, 9mm Black Metal ChainSandals

Glue or sew chain trim to the straps of your sandals for a shining accent! Try to choose a chain that is the same width as your straps!

Cameos on Sandals

Cameos, Sandals

If your sandals have wide straps, we would suggest taking advantage of that space with a row of floral cameos!

Braided and Leather Trimmed Sandals

Sandals, 1 3/4″ Multi Color Braided Vinyl10mm Two-Tone Spike Ultra Suede Ribbon

Black basic sandals are essential, but if you prefer yours with a little more oomph, add a strap of braided leather trim or studded leather trim.

Trend Alert: Pale Gray Decor

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Word on the street is that the hottest colors in home decor might actually be the coolest. We’ve been seeing pale gray everywhere from bedrooms to kitchens and studies. But why the sudden obsession with this seemingly cold shade? minimalist-interior-in-pale-palette-makes-the-views pop-9It’s clean and modern, without looking as stark and dramatic as black or white.

Astounding-white-living-room-decor-idea-with-grey-sofa-and-cushion-931x538It’s the perfect canvas for subtle pops of color.

 

e9896efcc74df26477c240d227a44909It can be downright cozy in a bedroom when using the right textiles.

 

industrial-hanging-pendant-lights-and-grey-interior-wall-decor-1030x602It’s a great neutral to mix with warm browns.

 

14438973120_1feeb773fb_oIt’s a great color for the minimalist, and a perfect choice for couples who don’t want something too masculine or feminine.

DIY: Shimmering Nail Art

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Did you know that the items we sell at M&J aren’t only great for fashion and accessories? You can also use them to beautify your nails! We used some of our smaller Swarovski crystals to add a shimmering accent to a fresh manicure. You can switch out the colors to match or contrast your nail polish for a customized look that’s all your own!  DSC_0487 What You’ll Need:

Polished nails

SS20 Rose AB Swarovski Flatbacks

SS20 Aquamarine AB Swarovski Flatbacks

SS16 Crystal Swarovski Flatbacks

Nail Glue

TweezersDSC_0488 1. Once your nails are painted, dab a little glue onto your ring finger, or whichever finger you’d  like to be the accent nail.

DSC_0490 2. Apply each rhinestone on your nail individually, using tweezers for more precision. Start with bigger rhinestones first, otherwise you may not have room for them later.DSC_0502 3. You can stop at one stone, or continue adding rhinestones until your entire nail is covered.

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M&J On the Today Show

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If you were tuned into Today with Kathie Lee and Hoda on Friday, you may have seen some of our star trims in the spotlight during Bobbie’s Buzz, a segment focused on the most current fashion trends. This segment highlighted the DIY craze, and featured three different types of DIYs to take your outfits to the next level!

Our favorite DIY of the three was definitely trim-centric, and featured an ingenious way to add trim to your outfit without ever having to touch a needle and thread.

Watch the video to see the crafty way you can attach trim to your favorite pieces!