Favorite Blue Chinoiserie Wallpapers – Week Five Spring 2023 One Room Challenge

Since I chose a smaller project for this challenge, I have some time to show you all the details! Wallpaper is a really popular right now, and I’m loving this new-again trend! Ever since I wallpapered an accent wall in our bedroom, I’ve been looking for my next project. The choices are nearly endless, which made picking a pattern for our mini-mudroom both daunting and fun! Here are some of my favorites, including high vs. budget options.

My criteria were:

  • Blue or green, of course!
  • A bold print – a small space is the perfect spot to try something brave!
  • A modern twist on a traditional pattern, with a nod to chinoiserie

First, I was really drawn to these patterns with metallic branches on a dark background. The “high” option on the left is Nutcracker by Juliet Travers. It’s so elegant, and the little squirrel adds a whimsical touch! The “budget” version on the right is Colby Floral wallpaper. I think either of these would be beautiful, but I decided I wanted something a littler bolder for this project.

I was really considering these next two favorites: a “budget” version is Crown Sherwood Woodland in Dark Blue on the left, and the “high” version is Rifle Paper Co. Menagerie Toile in Navy and Metallic Silver. They have a bit of a chinoiserie feel to them, and I really like how the patterns are very elaborate, but they don’t feel too busy, because of being two-toned. I was definitely tempted by the metallic finish of the Rifle Paper one, also!

I was also very drawn to this Toile pattern by Borastapeter in green or blue. Ultimately, I think the scale would be better for a bigger space. I would love this in a dining room!

Finally, I decided to go with this beautiful print, the Ronald Redding Aspen wallpaper in dark blue. I love the mix of classic and whimsical and the dark teal blue color with light brown accents that will be brought out by the wood cabinet and the brass coat hooks. I knew it was meant to be when I realized that this is the same pattern that was in the powder room of our rental house. I always loved it, and I am very sentimental , so it makes me really happy to have that connection between the two homes.

Stay tuned to see the wallpaper installed in the mini mudroom next week! In the meantime, head on back to the One Room Challenge site to see some more room transformations!

Julie AKA “Jewels”

Favorite Fall Decorating Ideas

Between the start of school, two boys’ birthdays, and Halloween costumes, I’ll confess that many years I skip right over any fall decorating. This year, we are in the middle of moving, so I’m not sure how much decorating I’ll do.

But when I do decorate for fall, I’ve found you can create a lot of atmosphere with a few changes. I set the mood with some pumpkins and candles, creating something neutral yet festive.

Here are some of favorite pictures from years past. Projects seen in this post include

Here’s to crisp fall days!

Julie aka “Jewels”

DIY Upcycled Metallic Planters – Being Green is Golden!

Today’s project is a great way to reuse – or “upcycle” items around your house, while creating something beautiful to feed your plant problem… I mean plant addiction… I mean plant projects! If you are a crazy plant lady like me, you are always looking for new ways to display your plants. I’m definitely not opposed to going shopping for some pretty planters, but it’s also amazing what you can do with things around your house.

A while ago, I showed you the faux marble planters I made from empty yogurt containers. The marble paper works well for sloped containers, because the pattern is random. But if you can find some containers that have straight sides (hint, eat a lot of Talenti Gelato- you know, for the cause!), then you have got to try out the same trick with metallic contact paper!

Here’s what you will need:

Here’s how to make the planters:

  • Wash out your container. For the shampoo and body wash containers, I roughly trimmed off the top – the final trimming will happen at the end
  • Measure the height and circumference of your container and cut out a piece of metallic contact paper that is the desired height and about a centimeter longer than the circumference
  • Carefully apply the contact paper
  • For the shampoo and body wash containers, I finished trimming the top after I put on the paper, so that it was exactly flush with the contact paper
  • That’s all!

You can put in drainage holes, if you want. If you use the containers without drainage holes, make sure to put a layer of rocks and some agricultural charcoal at the bottom and be careful not to overwater.

I think these pictures prove that being green can be completely golden!


Metallic Geometric Garlands

For our Mod Metallic Christmas, I wanted to make garlands for the tree and beyond. I love how these turned out, and I love that they are neutral enough to use for any occasion!

To make the garlands, I used beautiful metallic contact papers and simple twine to create a variety of garlands. You can find twine and white contact paper at a lot of local hardware stores, and here are the links buy the metallic contact paper:

I made three different garlands – squares, triangles, and circles – by cutting out shapes from the contact paper and sticking two sides together with twine sandwiched in between.

For the circle garland, you could also buy pre-cut circle stickers which would make the project even faster!

Here are the finished garlands, ready for when we put up our Christmas tree and for many celebrations to come!





DIY Gold-Painted Vases

One of my favorite partners in craft-crime recently hosted a bridal shower for one of our coworkers, and I offered to make some decorations. First, I made giant paper flowers for a photo backdrop, and next up were these gold-painted vases.

DIY gold-painted vases | Jewels at Home


  • Empty glass jars (pasta sauce, peanut butter, mustard, etc.)
  • Goo gone
  • Painters tape
  • Gold spray paint


  • Clean your jars thoroughly. I peel my labels as much as I can and then use Goo gone to remove the adhesive. Then, I run them through the dishwasher.
  • Mask off the area you don’t want to paint. I did a few variations: simple horizontal stripes, uneven edges (tape some torn paper around the vase), elastic bands, and geometric angles. You could get creative with round stickers for polka dots, etc.
  • Spray with gold spray paint and ta-da!

DIY gold-painted vases | Jewels at Home

I love how this textured jar turned out. I think it was a sauerkraut jar.

DIY gold-painted vases | Jewels at Home

At the shower, I grouped vases together, so these small arrangements made a big impact.

DIY gold-painted vases | Jewels at HomeDIY gold-painted vases | Jewels at HomeDIY gold-painted vases | Jewels at HomeDIY gold-painted vases | Jewels at HomeDIY gold-painted vases | Jewels at Home

From “trash” to treasures!DIY gold-painted vases | Jewels at HomeDIY gold-painted vases | Jewels at Home

I gave most of the vases away as party favors, so the is the only picture I have of one of the diagonal geometric designs (far right).DIY gold-painted vases | Jewels at Home

Of course, now I am seeing beauty throughout my pantry and already have plans for another set of vases!



“Stainless Steel” Contact Paper Tray

Okay, so I just discovered this faux stainless contact paper, and I’m sure this project is just the first of many projects!!

Remember the tray project that took less time than writing the post? Here it is again with faux stainless contact paper.

I’m sure this beer-themed tray has its uses, but it’s not the look I’m going for. I did, however, like the teal blue color of the edges and the price ($5.49!! at Ross). A quick addition of the metallic contact paper totally transformed it, don’t you think?

Transform a decorative tray with stainless steel contact paper | Jewels at Home

Transform a decorative tray with stainless steel contact paper | Jewels at Home

Transform a decorative tray with stainless steel contact paper | Jewels at Home

Transform a decorative tray with stainless steel contact paper | Jewels at Home

Transform a decorative tray with stainless steel contact paper | Jewels at Home

There’s also Brushed Pewter contact paper, which I already bought, and Brushed Copper contact paper, which is next on the list. I already have ideas for those!

What are you going to make with these fun finds?


Mercury Glass Look-alike Ornaments

This post should be subtitled “The Accidental Artist.” When I set out on this project, I just meant to repaint some old ornaments I had. Along the way, some of them turned out with a lovely mercury glass look that was an unexpected and pleasant surprise, since I have been coveting those baubles but holding off on buying them, since glass and toddlers do not mix. I wouldn’t normally have bothered painting these inexpensive plastic ornaments at all, but since I had the supplies already, I thought I might as well, and it turned out to be a good thing!

This mercury glass look-alike finish is easy to create with spray paints and makes charming Christmas ornaments.  {Jewels at Home}

I had a lot of simple red and gold ornaments left over from the Chinese “Red Egg and Ginger” party I organized for J a couple of years ago. I’ll have to blog about that later! This year, I’m trying for a red, turquoise, silver, and white -themed Christmas, so I decided to repaint some of the gold and red balls to turquoise and silver. I had plenty of other red ones.

I taped the balls upside down on some scrap cardboard with painter’s tape, sprayed a coat of primer and then a few coats of paint. The turquoise paint was initially intended for an old wooden chest. This color was actually too bright for the chest, but it came in useful here. The silver (soon to be “mercury glass”) ornaments were painted with Rustoleum metallic paint in “chrome.” I’ve been in the lookout for Krylon’s “Looking Glass” paint, and I have yet to find it in a local store, but the Rustoleum metallic chrome seems similar and has a very reflective silver finish. I would have been happy to leave the ornaments silver, but I thought I would do a clear topcoat to help protect them from chipping. The clear spray I happened to have in the garage is a lacquer, which might have more solvent in it than a regular spray paint. In any case, it left tiny dull spots on the chrome, and for a split second, I was disappointed, but I’m now as pleased as (Christmas) punch, because they have a great faux mercury glass look!

Here’s how I painted the ornaments:

Tutorial on repainting your Christmas ornaments for a fresh look, including a faux mercury glass technique!  {Jewels at Home}

An easy combination of these two spray paints will give you a beautiful faux mercury glass look for your Christmas ornaments or other projects!  {Jewels at Home}

An easy combination of these two spray paints will give you a beautiful faux mercury glass look for your Christmas ornaments or other projects!

Here are some more pictures of the “mercury glass” ornaments. They are not perfect, and I’m eager to try more of the faux mercury glass techniques out there, but as accidents go, this one was very happy (much happier than some of the mishaps that have not ended up on the blog!).

Create this mercury glass look-alike finish using spray paints. {Jewels at Home}

Create this mercury glass look-alike finish using spray paints. {Jewels at Home}

Create this mercury glass look-alike finish using spray paints. {Jewels at Home}

I’m definitely getting that festive holiday feeling! How about you?


Silver Spray Paints – DIY Apothecary Jar and Painted Screen

Spray paint itself is an amazing product – goes on quickly and evenly for a smooth finish. Metallic spray paint takes the level of wonder a step higher. I have been experimenting with two paints from Krylon’s Special Purpose Metallics line that I found at our neighborhood hardware store, and I think I’m addicted!

Dull Aluminum (1403) is what I used on the little box from the rummage sale. Despite its name, I don’t find it dull. It gives a cool grey/silver finish that looks like it’s painted – okay, I know that sounds obvious, but I mention it in contrast to the Bright Silver (1401), which looks more like a real metal finish.

metallic spray paints

Projects using Krylon “Dull Aluminum” and “Bright Silver” paints.

Here are some projects I’ve tried with each, and I’m already thinking about what to do next. Let me know if you have suggestions!

Bright Silver Paint
I’ve been trying to find more projects that reuse old things. Recycling is great, but it still uses a lot of energy and produces waste. Reusing is good for our planet and our pocketbooks, too! The challenge is to find projects that reuse old items but don’t look like a preschool art project!

This idea for a DIY apothecary jar is not original to me. I’ve seen it in several places, including Parties for Pennies.

DIY apothecary jar

DIY apothecary jar made from a used jar, a cabinet knob, and metallic spray paint.

You will need:

  • glass jar with lid
  • cabinet knob with bolt
  • washer
  • drill
  • sandpaper
  • spray primer
  • metallic spray paint
  • clear finish spray

1. Sand the lid to roughen it up for the paint to stick.

2. Drill a hole in the center of the lid

3. Insert the the bolt and washer from under the lid and screw on the knob

4. Spray primer, then paint (2 coats), and seal with a clear finish. Let each coat dry before continuing.


Another view of a DIY apothecary jar made from a used jar, a cabinet knob, and spray paint.

It’s such a creative and satisfying project. We use jars all the time, and I have a ton of knobs leftover from replacing the dated brass and black ones in our kitchen, so I’m thinking of making lots of these as gifts!

Dull Aluminum Paint

I used this paint on a couple of projects recently. This is actually a pretty silver-colored paint; I don’t like the word “dull” in it’s name! The first was for painting this box I picked up for five dollars at a rummage sale:

side table styling

This dull old box was painted silver with Krylon Dull Aluminum paint and looks beautiful in our living room!

I also used this more muted (I refuse to call it dull!) metallic paint to finish off a screen I was painting to hang in our master bathroom. This was an example of “the third time’s a charm.” I started with the bare wood screen, and hoped to use it that way, but it was just too rough and unfinished. Next, I painted it a pale blue (Swept Away by Benjamin Moore), which I had leftover from painting our kids’ bath and also used to paint another screen. The blue paint was an improvement, but it still felt unfinished, so I masked off the center and sprayed the border in silver. Sometimes, it takes a few tries to get the look you want, but it was worth it!

painted screen

It took a few tries to get the look I wanted for this screen. The silver spray paint really makes it feel elegant and finished!

painted blue and silver screen

A closer view of the finished screen in blue and silver.

These metallic paints are really so easy to use for a spectacular effect. Some other great uses I’ve seen and would love to try are:

  • spray branches for a vase arrangement
  • spray a decorative tray
  • spray ceramic vases or bowls for display
  • make pendants out of clay – thumbprints, engraved words, etc. and spray with silver, so they look like stamped metal
  • more DIY apothecary jars for sure!


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