Friday, October 12, 2018

Adirondack Basket Floral Arrangement Tutorial

Earlier in the week I shared my outdoor fall decor with you in this post. I used Adirondack baskets filled with floral arrangements as my front door decor. As noted, these shouldering baskets were originally created by Native Americans, intended for carrying gear and harvested foods. Though my baskets are newer, vintage Adirondack styles can be found online in various shopping venues or, alternatively you could choose a different style basket altogether. In today's post I'm illustrating how easy it was to create these arrangements, with inexpensive florals.
There are no affiliate links to my post (mine is an ad-free blog). I'm just sharing information of my own style and sources. The source list pertains to making one basket, and I simply doubled the materials to make two.
Supplies for Each Arrangement:
  • 1 Large Basket (mine are Ballard Designs Adirondack, purchased on sale with free shipping)
  • Plastic Bubble Wrap as bottom filler (mine came from package shipments received)
  • 3 Dry Floral Foam (singles available at Dollar Tree, 3-pack available at WalMart)
  • 10 -11 choice florals (4 or 5 like pairs) from Dollar Tree, each pair 12-15" (mine are 4 like pairs (8), plus 3 unique stems, for a total of 11 stems)
  • 3 longer floral stems, 21" or so (mine are 1 like pair, 1 unique, purchased at local drug store for $3 each)
Lay all your florals out in like pairs, along with all other supplies, on a working surface.
Keep the taller stems separate from the others.
Roll the bubble wrap as pictured.
Place in base of basket until at least half full, adjusting amount of bubble wrap if necessary.
Place three foam blocks side by side, in basket, on top of bubble wrap. It should be a tight fit so as not to have floral movement once you begin arranging.
Once satisfied with the positioning of the bubble wrap and foam, a quick cleanup with the vacuum keeps the mess to a minimum for OCD people like me.
Starting with what I'll call Layer 1, using the tall pair of like florals as the center point, arrange your choice of two pairs of the shorter stems symmetrically on either side (see picture below). This will eventually be inserted into the piece of foam at the back of the inside your basket (Foam block 1). But don't start inserting yet! Keep going with your arrangement on your working surface. This allows you to visualize the entire bouquet and make changes before inserting into the basket.
On top of Layer 1, start Layer 2 by arranging the remaining one pair of shorter stems and, in my case, three additional unique stems (from the supplies) until the look appeals to you. My centermost florals are the three unique stems -  a white mum, tan hydrangea, and the stem of round seed pods (brown). I arranged them centrally, with the like pair just below, on either side (see photo below).
For the last and final layer (Layer 3, as shown below), place the single, taller (21" in my case) floral stem in the center, and the final pair of shorter stems flanking it, one on each side. Rearrange anything at this point before starting to insert the layers into the foam.
Keeping with how you layered the florals - 1, 2, and 3 - insert those stems in each respective block of foam, 1 being the back piece in the basket, 2 being the middle piece, and 3 being the front piece.
Pictured below is the first layer of florals arranged in the foam inside the basket. At this point, I could see the one, smaller purple flora on the left needed to be situated a little farther left in my arrangement, so I adjusted it. Do this for anything that looks "off".
After working with each layer in similar fashion, you should have a full basket. What I did next was take that final, third layer of floral stems and started bending them forward, as if they were spilling from the basket. You can adjust any of the stems similarly. If it becomes unwieldy in handling, don't worry. You can always just pull the stem out and stick it back in. It's just a little easier to arrange the florals from back to front, in order. My total amount spent for supplies for each arrangement (excluding basket) was $23. If you already have faux florals on hand, your cost could be even less.
As mentioned, since mine are double front entry doors, I created two of these Adirondack basket arrangements.
This is but one season of a suggested floral arrangement for an Adirondack basket, and but one use for the basket itself. You could place this on an outside door as I have, an inside door, shelf, or even on the floor inside an entry or by a fireplace. I have ideas of arranging my fallen birch logs in one for a winter arrangement, or maybe using the basket to store throws in. How else would you suggest using them?
Thanks for your visit today. Feel free to leave your comments.
Rita C. at Panoply

Sharing: Pieced Pastimes, Best of the Weekend, Amaze Me, DIDIBNOTPInspire MeMake it PrettyThe ScoopDagmar's HomeCelebrate Your Story,SYS, SYCDelightsome Life H&GGrace at Home, Vintage Charm

Tuesday, October 9, 2018

Celebrating Fall Outdoors: Porch and Patio

Hello, and welcome to Panoply's celebration of fall outdoors, on both my porch and patio. If you're new to my blog and coming over from Itsy Bits and Pieces, I hope you've enjoyed Linda's vintage style. Here at Panoply, my home and style are mostly traditional but, as antique dealer, I infuse vintage flair with many of my accessories. 

Though we live in West Virginia, a state entirely within the Appalachian Mountain range, one might think the Adirondacks have come to the Appalachians with my fall porch decor.
This year, my double entry doors are decked out with Adirondack baskets filled with fall floral arrangements. Originally a Native American shouldering basket intended for carrying gear and harvested foods, the Adirondack basket has since become a great decor item to the masses. Though my baskets are newer, vintage styles can be found online in various shopping venues.
The floral arrangements in my baskets are my own creations, made with fall floral stem selections from [mostly] the Dollar Tree (no affiliations). I'll share how these were made in another post later this week.
Yellow mums are my go-to choice when it comes to fall potted flowers. I typically purchase in bud stage, and enjoy an extended bloom time that way, and later plant in my landscape garden. Just a few ghost pumpkins were added this year on one side of the porch.
On the opposite side of the porch, my cast iron urn (antique) still holds my summer fern, which remains quite healthy since purchasing in late May. A vintage sundial and orb are situated beside another mum in a concrete pumpkin urn on the porch floor.
With the baskets as the statement pieces on the front porch, I used a light hand for the remaining decor.
Those who are familiar with my blog know that my favorite room in the house is my sunroom. Just outside my sunroom is our courtyard patio, below. With the French doors going to and from the sunroom to the patio, it's simple to pull pillows and throws for outdoor entertaining.
Our teak furniture in the courtyard is nearly 15 years old, but sturdy and strong. We have a bench, two rockers, and a coffee table in this area for cozier gatherings, and a lounge chair and a 13' cantilevered umbrella just beyond. Though I have cushions for each of these pieces of furniture, I've simply pulled some of my favorite pillows and throws to add some traditional fall color. My container plantings are still providing life and color for an added touch. Btw, I spotted my last hummingbird on these containers on September 25th, surely on their southward, migratory journey.
My table decor is a basket tray, full of my patch of various pumpkins. The cloth pumpkins are situated among natural sticks, seed pods, and a freestyle, chalk painted graphic on maple leaf hanger which my niece made for me last year.
On the opposite end of our brick courtyard (enclosed by brick wall) is a grassy area with hot tub. Along the garage wall I have climbing roses and lavender planted at its base.
Along the brick wall just beside the chaise lounge (afternoon shadowplay of that wall is apparent in the photos above) I recently discovered the evidence of a seed pod buffet, no doubt from squirrels. Just a couple weeks prior, there were flower petals all over that same space.
In the photo below, that's the view looking over the wall, into my landscape. You can see the orange flowers on the right in one of my landscape beds. Those are Mexican sunflowers. Evidently the squirrels like them a lot!
The photo below is looking out into my garden from the courtyard wall (I was on a stepstool).
And the shot below is taken just inside the courtyard, looking through the gate which leads to my garden.
The garden flag is all I needed to add to the landscape for decorating for fall. Mother Nature will take care of the rest!
It's been a pleasure having you here at Panoply today to share my celebrating fall on my porch and patio, with a glimpse into my garden. If you'd like to see more of my garden, I'm providing an easy link here, which starts with my most recent posts.

I'd like to thank Amber Ferguson from the blog, Follow the Yellow Brick Home, for organizing today's collection of bloggers sharing their ideas for fall porches and patios. Next on the tour is Laura, from the blog Decor to Adore. I'm sure you'll enjoy her take on fall decor, as well as all the other bloggers' whose links are conveniently provided below. Even if you're already set for fall this year (or chose not to decorate, for whatever reason), it's always fun to have such a variety of great source material all in one place, for pinning inspiration for future ideas. Enjoy!
Also, feel free to browse my other topics on my blog (located at the menu bar at the top of this page or, if on a handheld, scroll to the bottom and click on web version to access menu bar). You may also search with keywords on the side bar, or check out my labels.
Thanks for your visit today. I'd love for you to leave a comment, letting me know you were here today. You are most welcome to return, anytime!

Rita C. at Panoply

Sharing: Pieced Pastimes, Best of the Weekend, Amaze Me, DIDIBNOTP, Inspire MeMake it PrettyThe ScoopDagmar's HomeCelebrate Your Story,SYS, SYCDelightsome Life H&GGrace at Home, Vintage Charm


Monday, October 1, 2018

Miscellaneous Musings No. 14

Welcome to Panoply. Today's topic is Miscellaneous Musings. I see things, hear things or do things that make me remember each for one reason or another. As random as they may seem when strung together, eventually I take time to spill them in one place through a post like this. You are more than welcome to join the conversation on any or all of these random subjects by commenting below. You're also welcome to read any or all of my past musings with this link, hereThis one is no. 14, so let me begin.......(Any links are NON-affiliate. Remember, this is an ad-free blog, always).

In the Things I Like/Love Department......
For my first musing in this collection No. 14, I couldn't love the video below any more (well, unless I was dancing in it, maybe). It is National Ballet of Spain's Antonio Najarro, Artistic Director, teamed up with men's fashion designer team, Oteyza, for the Madrid catwalk in July 2018. If you're so inclined, watch this four minute video of flamenco dance to see both the pure style of dance and a unique sales marketing technique at their finest. You're welcome.
Meanwhile, in real life, have you noticed lots of Retired Old Men Eating Out (ROMEOs) in the mornings at your local fast-food restaurants? Here's one group my sister M and I spotted while heading to Ohio on our shopping trip back in August.

Nothing like a good slip-n-slide in the summertime, right? That is, unless it happens to be on your interstate! This happened in July on I-79 in West Virginia. Apparently, someone lost some soap, and it was raining. 😨 I wasn't there or else this would be on my things I don't like list.
Recently at my local grocery store, I noticed this lighthouse in the middle of a parking lot (we are in a land-locked state). It used to be a live tree that became diseased. When life gives you lemons.......
School's back in session. Having been taught by nuns most of my life, I find this mug below quite amusing. I bet Sister Patrick wouldn't think it was so funny.
In the Garden Department.........
This is that time of year, just before the leaves die, that the kudzu weeds take on a life of their own. Pictured below is a utility pole completely covered (and then some). It looked like Bigfoot to me.
Have you ever seen remote controlled grass cutting? The photo below was taken from my riverbank (looong distance), looking across the (muddy) river, near our state capitol grounds. Those arrows point to two city workers (in green t-shirts, one at top, one at base of the steep, grassy riverbank). In their hands, they are each controlling a lawn mower (red). How cool would that be to own one of those?
I've shown you praying mantis hiding in my container plantings in a previous garden post (here) this past summer. What I didn't know is they molt! Pictured in the top half of the collage photo below is the skin I found one afternoon on the brick step near the container plant.
The bottom half of that collage above shows where the bigger praying mantis (at least that's what I'm claiming) ended up soon after - in my house on the ceiling crown molding! I nearly killed myself while on a step stool when the thing did a flying leap toward me as I was maneuvering a cup to catch him. I eventually got him out through a nearby window.

Saw this big guy below trying to hitch a ride on the buggy on the Kohl's parking lot one day.
We've had a waterlogged hot tub lid for over a year now (when Mr. P tried opening it a few months ago, the weight even snapped the hydraulic lid lift). When the vinyl covered styrofoam lid works properly, it keeps the hot tub water level and temperature even, as filled and set, respectively. Ours was damaged by Mr. P. scraping snow off hail hitting and damaging the lid, and sun exposure over time. It was finally replaced this summer, and the repair guy couldn't even lift the lid because it was so heavy with water (and the hydraulic was already broken). When I suggested slicing the lid (it folds in half) and again on top to let water escape first (I know, brilliant, right?), the guy didn't have but something similar to a tiny little Swiss knife in his toolbox. Enter moi to the rescue!
And guess where that knife came from? Yep, it was the Dollar Tree knife mentioned as one of my garden tool hacks, here. Betcha the hot tub guy stopped at the DT on his way back to his shop, ya think?
Now that it's fall, I'm rolling my change and putting it away for next year's planting. I save all the change I find, most of which comes from our walks every day.  What I don't use for my garden, I'll put toward retirement trips. 😃
In the Things I Don't Like Department.......
I do not like seeing recalls - almost daily - of things we ingest, or things our pets ingest, whether foods or medicines. Here's a checklist so you can keep up with them yourself. You may want to pin this one (from the original source, at the link provided):
U.S. Food & Drug Administration 2018 Recalls, Market Withdrawals

With kids being back in school, I noticed something new this year. I noticed parents of schoolchildren "adopting" teachers to help them out with the endless list of things they fund for the classroom themselves. Great idea. What I don't like is the failure of parents to launch their children. I actually saw a friend post on Facebook a link to an online wish list from which people could purchase supplies for her newly (college) graduated, gainfully employed school ADULT teacher DAUGHTER. Come on, man!

I do not like to get insulting offers on things I place in my antique booths, or even yard sales, for that matter. If you are that person, all I can say is have some couth. If you're a dealer making the offer, as a fellow dealer it's maddening to get an offer that's 70% of or less of an asking price. I would say that's true for just about anything that's being offered for sale. Think about it. If you were selling your home, how would you feel if someone made that kind of offer?

Where in the world do those big, bushy FAKE eyebrows come from these days? And who in their right mind thinks those are attractive? I understand a natural line drawn if you have hair loss from things like thyroidism or other conditions, but to make one's eyebrows look like this...
You remind me of this....
.....and you may as well do this
It just looks ridiculous!  In case you can't tell - I do NOT like the current bold eyebrow trend that makeup manufacturers are pushing. Ladies, please don't let your mothers, daughters or friends do this! And stop the duck lips already, puh-leaze. They remind me of those wax candy things we had as kids.
Source

And here's one more thing I don't like that's going to be blogger blasphemy to a lot of you. I do NOT like Halloween. It's okay if you do, and I love seeing how you decorate to the nines to amuse and entertain me, but I just have never liked it and I guess I never really will. I dread trick-or-treat each year, but participate because I want the candy don't want my house to be "that" house.
And even though I like getting rid of things in yard sales, I classify them right up there as the next closest thing to Halloween trick-or-treat. Everybody wants to come get something for nothing, and they want the very best of what you've got.

I'm thinking about working my way into a capsule wardrobe. My problem is letting go of everything that's in my closet(s) now that has fit me for most of my life. I just know those bold brights with shoulder pads of the 80s are coming back soon. Won't they look great with the latest, peekaboo shoulder tops? 😉 Meanwhile, Mr. P has it down pat, courtesy of L.L. Bean.
Ugh, why is accumulating so easy and purging so hard??? Except, of course, when it comes to brain dumps like this one. Then it's easy to purge my brain and prompt your reactions.

Your readership is appreciated, and your comments are always welcome.
Rita C. at Panoply