Design. Create. Decorate.

Design. Create. Decorate.

Friday, October 30, 2015

Bathroom Curtain - Sew Quick 'n' Easy!

Welcome to Quince Cottage!
Today we're showing you a super fast, super simple way to add privacy and decorative appeal to your bathroom. Like many new houses, the master bathroom at Quince Cottage has one of those big ugly square windows that doesn't even open. Adds light, but compromises privacy. To keep most of the light, but make us feel better about getting out of the shower unobserved by neighbors, we decided a half curtain was in order.
As you know, we like inexpensive fixes that don't "look" inexpensive. As you may also know, Rhiann dislikes sewing, therefore the simpler, the better.
Shower curtain fabric is ideal for this application because it's made to stand up to steam. A shower curtain cut in half was more than big enough to cover the window amply (in fact we trimmed off about a foot from the side because otherwise we'd have run short of trim). We found this shower curtain at Tuesday Morning for $14.99 along with the fabulous twine fringe for $4.99.

Good Finds from Tuesday Morning! © Rhiann Wynn-Nolet
Rhiann prefers a little ruffle at the top of the curtain because it's more luxurious looking than a curtain without one.
So, after measuring carefully and cutting the shower curtain to the desired size, join the two halves with a vertical seam. We took the time to match the pattern as you would with wallpaper.
Next turn over the top and sew across (tucking the raw edge under so it won't fray).
Stitch across once more to make a pocket for the rod and a ruffled look above the rod. Then hem, and if you want, add a trim.

Bathroom Curtain © Rhiann Wynn-Nolet

Unfortunately for Rhiann, the trim was so thick it had to hand-sewn to the fabric, but by using large basting stitches it really didn't take all THAT long. Honestly, if you hate sewing even more than she does, you could use some of that sticky iron-on tape for this project and it would probably work just as well.
We're going for a bit of an Old World Luxe meets Natural Neutrals in this bathroom and so far we think it looks pretty good!

Bath Curtain © Rhiann Wynn-Nolet
What's up next on the blog? We've got a post in the works about our bricked kitchen backsplash-the one that's been a pretty big hit on Instagram. More autumn decor ideas are coming too!

Meanwhile, Daisy and Buster are trying to catch up on their sleep. As you can see, they like to "redecorate" too!

After The Morning Walk © Rhiann Wynn-Nolet

Quince Cottage Style mixes old and new, rustic and opulent.

Our goal is to make our new subdivision house look inviting, beautiful, and as though it wasn't born yesterday.

Saturday, October 17, 2015

Halloween Decor - Taking It Outside!

If you saw our previous post about Halloween decorating, then you know this is a special holiday for us, since it's also our anniversary!
Here are some more photos of the inside of Quince Cottage.

Dining Room © Rhiann Wynn-Nolet
Close up of one of our vignettes © Rhiann Wynn-Nolet
Halloween Mantel © Rhiann Wynn-Nolet
And at night...

Night © Rhiann Wynn-Nolet

We had a couple of weeks of unrelenting rain here in North Carolina which messed up our decorating schedule, but we've more or less finished and want to share some photos with you!
Here's the full effect in daylight...

Halloween at Quince Cottage © Rhiann Wynn-Nolet
Here it is at dusk...

Halloween © Rhiann Wynn-Nolet
Halloween © Rhiann Wynn-Nolet
We thought the lanterns needed a little something-something, so we added orange bulbs and simple spiders we cut out of construction paper and taped to the glass.

Lantern © Rhiann Wynn-Nolet

Graveyard © Rhiann Wynn-Nolet

And here's a close up of our "graveyard" and our fountain, now a "skull compote" of sorts. To be honest, the darker skulls were a threesome that are supposed to light up and make scary noises, and be stuck in the ground on stakes. Unfortunately they didn't work this year, so we dumped them in the fountain and added a couple of Dollar Store skulls, some dead leaves, and cobwebs.

Final Resting Place © Rhiann Wynn-Nolet

On a less creepy note, we decided to keep our summer pillows and work with the yellow/gold and lavender/plum scheme, because those also create an excellent autumn palette. The fact that it's a little different from the usual orange/brown/red scheme is actually fine.
Being different is a good thing, right?

© Rhiann Wynn-Nolet

Here's a closeup of our urn. We felt bad about ripping living plants out of the urns, so we simply took a grapevine wreath, placed it on top of the urn, then pulled some of the ivy and Impatience over the top. Next we set the pumpkin on an upside down flower pot in the center, and finally tucked in some faux berries from Michael's.

Urn © Rhiann Wynn-Nolet
We hope you enjoyed this little tour of our scary-but-not-too scary front porch!

While we were hard at work decorating, Buster was dreaming of being a unicorn.

Unicorn Buster © Rhiann Wynn-Nolet
(Actually that's a water buffalo horn he was gnawing before dozing off).

Come back again soon, we've got some great DIY projects in the works and a couple we've actually finished and are ready to share!

Quince Cottage Style mixes old and new, rustic and opulent. 

Our goal is to make our new subdivision house look inviting, beautiful, and as though it wasn't born yesterday

Saturday, October 10, 2015

Pumpkin Apple Bundt Cake

Welcome back to Quince Cottage!
With autumn well underway, you may or may not have had your fill of "pumpkin everything". If you haven't, then this is a recipe you'll want to try. It's a moist, dense, not overly sweet, not screamingly pumpkin, cake - ideal for breakfast, brunch, snack, or dessert.
We found it on Pinterest (of course) and credit goes to JuliasAlbum(dot)com. We made only a few changes in terms of ingredients.

Pumpkin Apple Bundt Cake © Rhiann Wynn-Nolet

2 eggs
3/4 C white granulated sugar
1/2 C brown sugar
2/3 C vegetable oil
1 TBS vanilla extract
1 C pumpkin puree
2 C all-purpose flour, sifted
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
4 C apples, cored, peeled and diced (about 6 small-medium apples)

Caramel sauce (you can make your own, but we bought a jar)
1/3 C chopped pecans

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
2. In a medium bowl, using an electric mixer, beat eggs, white and brown sugar until light in color and creamy, about 4-5 minutes.
3. Add oil and vanilla extract and beat 1-2 minutes more. Add pumpkin puree and beat 1 more minute.
4. In a separate medium bowl, combine flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon.
5. Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients and stir just until combined. Fold in apples.
6. Spray bundt pan with baking spray. Pour batter into pan.
7. Bake at 350 degrees for 50-60 minutes (toothpick test). Let the cake cool on a wire rack about 40 minutes. Invert the bundt pan onto a serving platter and let cake cool completely.
8. When ready to serve drizzle caramel sauce over the cake (suit your own tastes in terms of how much you use) and then sprinkle pecans over the cake.

This cake is really better after sitting for a day, lightly wrapped, so by all means make it a day ahead of when you actually need it!

Pumpkin Apple Bundt Cake © Rhiann Wynn-Nolet
Pumpkin Apple Bundt Cake © Rhiann Wynn-Nolet

You could easily substitute pears for the apples, walnuts for the pecans, etc. At Quince Cottage, we like recipes that are flexible as well as delicious. Enjoy!
Unfortunately this was not a treat we shared with our Irish Jack Russell Terriers - except for a few chunks of apple. You can imagine how hard it is to resist spoiling them.

Daisy and Buster © Rhiann Wynn-Nolet

Come back soon--we'll be sharing our outdoor Halloween decor!

Quince Cottage Style mixes old and new, rustic and opulent. 

Our goal is to make our new subdivision house look inviting and beautiful, 

and as though it wasn't born yesterday.

Friday, October 2, 2015

Halloween! Quince Cottage Goes Wonderfully Witchy!

Hope we didn't scare you (much)! Halloween is our favorite holiday-we even chose it for our wedding. Dressing up in costume, eating lots of candy...what's not to like?
As you might expect, we love Halloween decorating and have accumulated a fair amount of "stuff" over the years. But, with each move, we've pared away a few things that we no longer like quite as much, and we find new ways to style our displays.
I think this might be the best year yet!
Of course there are lots of pumpkins, real and "faux". I painted some of the fake ones white.

Fake white pumpkin © Rhiann Wynn-Nolet
That woven paisley is an antique Victorian wrap we got in New Hampshire quite a few years ago. Moths have made inroads, but if we fold the fabric a certain way, it looks just as brilliant and perfect as the day it was made.

Here's a macro of the buffet, with bats!

© Rhiann Wynn-Nolet

And naturally we did our mantel.

© Rhiann Wynn-Nolet
Here's a close up of the left side, crystal balls and cobwebs y'all...
© Rhiann Wynn-Nolt
And here's the right. Notice something in the mirror? Pretty nifty Dollar Store "ghost", don't you think? What should we name her?

© Rhiann Wynn-Nolet

And we Halloweened up our foyer. Like our new verb? Thought you would...

© Rhiann Wynn-Nolet
There's a tablescape in our family room. That skull raised a few eyebrows at London's Gatwick airport when we went through Security. The skeleton figure is from Marie Leveau's shop in New Orleans. The head in the cage is a plaster cast of a sculpture Rhiann did at the Museum of Fine Arts School in Boston. His name is Charlie. He scares the bejeepers out of our older daughter.

© Rhiann Wynn-Nolet
Here it is at night with the little battery-powered votives.

© Rhiann Wynn-Nolet
Oh, here's an extra little treat for you...some Halloween costumes we've worn over the years.
One year Rhiann was dead Lucrezia Borgia, misunderstood medieval poisoner, and Ron was dead Marquis de Sade.

Marquis de Sade and Lucrezia Borgia

Here's our little one as a mime several years ago.

Mime © Rhiann Wynn-Nolet

We still think this corn muffin costume might be the best one ever. It was Little One's suggestion, because corn muffins were one of the few foods she ate at that time. Big One was a lady vampire. A few years later, she developed a Twilight obsession. Hmm...

Lady Vampire & Corn Muffin © Rhiann Wynn-Nolet

Here's Daisy.
Daisy as Mulan © Rhiann Wynn-Nolet

She wasn't the least bit on board with the costume idea. She was plotting her revenge-you can see it in her eyes.

She's equally unimpressed with Halloween decorating.

Daisy © Rhiann Wynn-Nolet

Next time we'll share photos of our spooky-licious outdoor Halloween decor, assuming Hurricane Joaqin doesn't break our house.
Also, we're trying a pumpkin-apple bundt cake with caramel pecan glaze. If it turns out as good as it looks in the photos, we'll share the recipe.

Quince Cottage Style mixes old and new, rustic and opulent. Our goal is to make our new subdivision house look inviting and beautiful, and as though it wasn't born yesterday.