Apple Spice Crumble Bars


Pamela Reed, from Brooklyn Farm Girl, is back with another mouthwatering recipe. The air is crisp and leaves are starting to fall, so it's the perfect time of year for a delicious apple spice crumble bar! Enjoy.

I love everything about fall! I love cozy sweaters, coats, boots, the crisp wind on my cheeks in the morning and most importantly, the food.  

Why else is Fall the best?  Apple picking!  With a bunch of apples, you can make so many goodies.  One of my favorite is homemade cinnamon sugar apple sauce, it’s the perfect nighttime snack, especially warmed up!  Did I mention sea salt apple chips too? I can’t get enough of them. But for this apple recipe I wanted something sweet, something I can sink my teeth into with a nice cup of tea - that’s how Apple Spice Crumble Bars came to be.

These bars are delicious, they will quickly become a family and friend favorite.  Take them to a party and they will be gone within minutes.  I hope you enjoy these bars, it’s one of my favorite apple recipes!



The Bars
1/4 cup butter - softened
2/3 cup sugar
1 egg
1/2 cup all purpose flour
1/2 cup whole wheat flour
1 cup applesauce
1 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt

The Crumble
2 tablespoons flour
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
5 tablespoons brown sugar
1 tablespoon butter

The Bars
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  
Spray nonstick spray to 8x8 pan.
In a bowl mix butter, sugar, egg and flour. 
Add in applesauce and continue stirring.
Add pumpkin pie spice, baking soda
and salt and stir until smooth.
Spread mixture into your sprayed pan.
After crumble is made (directions below),
sprinkle on top and bake 35-40 minutes.
Let cool for 10 minutes and then cut up into sized bars desired.
The Crumble
Combine flour, cinnamon and brown sugar.
Cut in your butter until it's crumbly.
Add it on top of your mix and into the oven it goes for 35-40 minutes.
And when it comes out of the oven golly molly it’s Apple Spice Crumble Bar time.  You want to make sure the bars sit for about 10 minutes so it has time to settle.  You should be able to run a knife down the sides easily to pull it away from the pan.
*Dances*  Now it’s time to dive in!
Enjoy your Apple Spice Crumble Bars! Good luck not eating them all.

For more delicious recipes, check out the Recipes section of our blog, or head to our Pinterest page!
Follow us on Pinterest >

How to Get Your Home Fall-Ready


Carmen Ordonez, from Viva Fashion, is giving us tips to get our homes ready for autumn! Cool air and colorful leaves call for an interior that matches and Carmen shows us how to achieve the perfect fall decor.

(Photo credit: 

The air feels crisp and the dog days of summer are slowly behind us. I don’t know about you, but every time the season changes I get an itch to give my space a little refresh. Luckily, there are several ways you can get your home fall-ready in a pinch. Here are just a few:  1bbf8e

Add Warmth and Texture

Nothing says fall like furry or knitted accents. Instead of decorative pillows in bright, summery colors, consider adding some in warm tones or a chunky knit. You can also add an unexpected item like a shaggy rug. Oh and don’t forget a cozy blanket so you can cuddle up with on the couch (with your pumpkin flavored drink of choice, of course).  

Photo-2-CO-2(Photo credit:

Bring the Outdoors In

Since you’re probably going to spend more time indoors, it’s a good idea to bring the outdoors in. You can start by adding some houseplants to your home. Try to look for plants that require minimal light, such as succulents or a snake plant. They also work great at purifying the air (another plus). 

Photo-3-CO-2(Photo credit:         

Mix Prints of the Season

Florals and nautical tones are great for the summer, but just like fashion, why not switch things up for the fall? Instead, you can look for decorative accents in autumn vibes such as a plaid pillow. I also love the idea of adding brass and gold elements such as a brass candle holder and a gold flower vase. 

Photo-4-CO-2(Photo: StyleByEmilyHenderson)

For more amazing decor tips, check out the rest of our Home Expert Series, or visit our Pinterest page!

Follow us on Pinterest >

DIY Wooden & Iron Pumpkin


Courtney, from The Hamby Home, is back! This time she's showing us a way to create super unique, super chic fall decor. These pumpkins are adorable and so trendy. 

I was walking through a local store that has booths full of furniture, décor, etc. when I saw these unfinished furniture feet in a box with some other unfinished wooden pieces. I have pumpkins on the brain and immediately saw them as potential pumpkins. These could be painted or stained but I loved the contrast of the unfinished wood and cast iron “stems” so I decided to leave them as is.


Wooden Furniture Foot – similar to these
Drawer Pull (I purchased these) 
Hack Saw
Power Drill
Felt or Cork
Hot Glue

Step 1: Using the hack saw, saw the
existing screw on the furniture foot. 
Note: It would be easier to remove with
pliers but these were glued too tightly.
Step 2: Using a hack saw, saw off the flat
end of the screw that comes with
the knob.
Step 3: Drill a hole into the center of the
“bottom” of the foot
(opposite side as the original screw)
and then twist the drawer pull
screw into the hole.
Step 4: Screw the drawer pull onto
the screw until it’s tight.
Step 5: Cut a circle out of thin cork
or felt and hot glue on the bottom
to protect your surface from
the old screw. Note: If you have a grinder or
metal file, you could file the edge of
the cut screw until smooth and
skip this step.
That's it! I have never seen pumpkins like this so they’re unique and easy to make, which is the best kind of DIY project! You can customize it to fit your style, just stain it, paint it, distress it or switch out the drawer pull to suit your taste!
For more fun fall DIY projects, check out the rest of our Home Expert Series or head over to our Pinterest page!
Follow us on Pinterest >

Turning a '70s Sofa Table into A Contemporary Masterpiece


Welcome back again my Beauties! It's time again for another edition of the "Home Expert Series." This week I am going to show how, with a small amount of paint, you can turn an outdated '70s sofa table into a statement piece to be proud of. 

I received this old, outdated sofa table from a friend and, while the piece was in perfect shape structurally, its aesthetics were lacking.


You can see from the close up that it had the faux wood finish (fake speckles included.) It wasn't the most stylish but I knew I could fix it up.



First, I cleaned the piece really well and just wiped it all down. I removed the glass inserts from the top and set them safely aside while I painted the table.I decided to go with a fun sage color sage for this table as an homage to the decade it came from. It's Grand Prairie Sage by CeCe Caldwells; a natural clay and mineral based paint. You can see from the next picture how the table looked with one thin coat on. 


Once that coat was dry I applied another thin layer of paint. When the second layer was dry I just used my clear wax to seal it. After the whole piece was sealed, I buffed the piece with a lint-less cloth (like an old t-shirt) to shine it up.I replaced the glass and this once outdated piece could now be reused for multiple purposes. 


I used it for a while as a wine bar, but I eventually sold it to someone who wanted to use it as a display piece.That's the great thing about furniture.You don't always have to use it for its intended purpose.This piece could have easily been used as a media stand as well. Perfect height for a TV.


Be sure to think outside the box when looking at your furniture, and never turn down a free piece of ugly furniture from a friend.You never know what you might come up with. Until next time, have a beautiful day!


For more fun home DIY projects, check out the rest of our Home Expert Series or check out our Pinterest page

Follow us on Pinterest >



Turn an Old Drawer into a Jewelery Organizer


Cassie Bustamante, from Primitive and Proper, loves saving old furniture from the wood chipper. She found a dresser she wasn't a huge fan of, but loved the drawers and decided to make something beautiful with one of them. Check it out!

I am a big believer in saving furniture from the landfill, and sometimes that means just salvaging parts of pieces that have truly seen better days.  I found a funky waterfall style dresser at a flea market for a steal, but the body had some issues and it just wasn’t worth the save.  However, it had 4 in-tact and I really liked the chippy layers of mustard yellow paint with hints of blue peeking through.


I decided to save the drawers and reinvent them, giving them other uses.  I’ve seen drawers repurposed into shelves, under bed storage, and so much more.  Today I am going to show you how to make an old drawer into a jewelry organizer.

You will need paint and a brush, measuring tape, a drill and drill bit, tea cup hooks, pliers, and petite vintage dishes (optional).

First, paint the drawer.  Since it will all be exposed you want to make sure you paint every surface.  I loved the existing old yellow paint on the drawer front, but there was no way I was going to be able to match it exactly, so I chose a complementary color, General Finishes Persian Blue.  The drawer had little bits of blue showing under the yellow, so this color brought that out nicely.  The paint went on beautifully, and I was able to give it just one coat.


Once the paint is dry, measure the inside of the drawer front, both length and width.  You will use these measurements to mark where you want to put your teacup hooks.  My drawer was 25” wide, so I kept them spaced 2.5” apart from one another.  It was 8” deep, so I spaced them just 2” apart going back.  I drew dots with a pencil to mark each spot that a teacup hook would be placed.


Check the size of your teacup hooks, and select a drill bit that is slightly smaller in width.  Often the package will tell you what size bit to use, but if not, just make sure it’s slightly narrower than the hook you want to screw in place. Drill pilot holes on each of your marks, careful not to drill through the drawer front.


Now screw your teacup hooks into your pilot holes as tightly as you can.  To tighten them further, use a pliers to turn them, facing the hook towards you so that it's easy to access them when using to hang jewelry.


Start with the bottom and work your way up the grid of holes to leave your hands more room to work.  Continue working your way up until all of the hooks are in place, tightening with the pliers as you go.


Now comes the fun part- organize your jewelry!  With so many hooks, there is a hook for every necklace, bracelet, or dangly earring pair you own. You can add little vintage dishes to store small earrings and bracelets as well.  




This project was fairly simple, and saved a piece from its ultimate destruction at the dump.  Of course, I still have three more perfectly good drawers, and my wheels are spinning, ready to churn out some new repurposed ideas!

For more fun DIY projects, check out the rest of the Home Expert Series, or follow us on Pinterest!

Follow us on Pinterest >


Top 5 Decorating Tips for Renters: How to Decorate your 'Home for Now'


Trend Mogul's Gabrielle Anschau is back and this time shes giving us some tips to turn a drab rental into a fab, personalized dream home...for now. Get ready to transform your rental.

Aside from the rare few, most rental homes are not renowned for their warmth and character. But renters never fear - stylish homes are not just for homeowners! There are many quick, affordable, and temporary ways to transform even the blandest, cookie-cutter rentals into a fabulous, personalized homes…even if it is ‘just for now’. 

1. Invest in storage. 

Rentals often lack permanent storage fixtures such as custom wardrobes and cabinetry, and since installing these yourself is not an option, use bookcases and shelves to display and store your possessions. Investing in a couple of stock-standard bookshelves from Ikea may be the best investment you make!


(Photo via:

2. Replace the Hardware.

Switching up the knobs and handles on drawers and cupboards will add a fresh and stylish flair to drab kitchens and bathrooms. Remember to keep the original knobs and handles to swap back on moving day. 

(Photo via:

3. Accessorize. 

Add vibrancy and life to your home with rugs, cushions, indoor plants, and your own personal collections. Create the illusion of permanency with items that represent your personality and interests – there is no reason your rental home needs to look like motel room. Tip: Create a focal point for each room, whether it is a floor length mirror, a quirky lamp or a funky vintage chair. Choose something that represents who you are! 

(Photo via:

4. Amp-up your art collection. 

You don’t need colorful walls to create a vibrant room. Embrace white and neutral walls as a subtle backdrop for your favorite colorful and pattern-packed pieces. Artwork is the simplest way to inject personality into a room and doesn’t need to break the bank to be beautiful. Framed posters are a great way to add style and personality to your home, and can be easily swapped with new ones at any time at minimal cost. Tip: Don’t despair if your fussy landlord disapproves of drilling holes in walls. Rather, rest frames on shelves or the ground against the wall. For light canvas pieces opt for stick-on hooks.  

Photo-4-GA-2 (Photo via:

5.  Pick versatile furniture. 

Always go for versatile furniture in neutral tones that will suit your home, move-to-move. Although we may fall in love with certain statement pieces, it makes transitioning them into your next rental all the more difficult as you don’t know what you will be styling them against and what kind of room dimensions you will be dealing with. Save yourself time and money and opt for compact, neutral pieces when it comes to purchasing core pieces of furniture such as beds, lounges, dining tables etc. There are easier (and cheaper) ways to show off your personality!


For more amazing decorating tips, check out the rest of the Home Expert Series or visit our Pinterest page
Follow us on Pinterest >

Easy Pumpkin Cheesecake Cannoli


Alicia, from The Crafterglow, is back and bringing the fall flavors to Pursuit of Home. We all know Pumpkin Spice Lattes (PSLs) are slowly sneaking up on us, but Alicia has brought us something new: the PCC. These Pumpkin Cheesecake Cannolis are the less-basic way to enjoy your favorite fall flavors, so dig in! 

It’s that time again. Time to bust out your sweaters and boots and enjoy that crisp autumn air. Being a September baby myself, I have always loved the fall. I adore it all; from the beautiful colors emerging on the trees outside to the trips to the farmers markets. But what I love the most about fall is what I love the most about almost everything: the food. I haven’t wasted any time and already started adding pumpkin to just about everything I’ve been baking, and this pumpkin cheesecake cannoli filling is a new favorite.


With the holidays around the corner and all the parties that go along with this time of year, I like to find unique but easy dish that I can quickly whip up. This pumpkin cheesecake cannoli recipe is easy, no bake, has minimum ingredients, and you can serve it in a variety of ways. You can even throw the filling in a pretty serving dish with cannoli chips or pretzels if you don’t feel like filling individual shells. 

They take about 20-30 minutes to make and they combine all the best parts of pumpkin pie, cheesecake and cannolis. Does it get any better?


2 packages of cream cheese (softened)
1½ cups powdered sugar
1½ cups canned pumpkin
1 cup whipping/heavy cream
¼ cup chopped pecans
¼ cup chocolate chips
2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
Caramel syrup (for garnishing)
2 12-count packages mini cannoli shells or chips

(Yield: 50 mini cannoli pastries or 20-25 large ones)


First, combine the softened cream cheese,
powdered sugar, pumpkin pie spice,
and canned pumpkin in a large mixing bowl.
Then, beat ingredients until smooth.
Add the chocolate chips and pecans and mix in.
You could also switch it up with other chopped nuts,
white chocolate or cinnamon chips,
or even toffee pieces.
Feel free to experiment with anything you might prefer.
In a separate bowl, beat the whipping cream
on high speed until it begins to
get fluffy and form peaks.
It should become the consistency of a whipped topping.
Fold the pumpkin cream cheese mixture
into the whipped cream until thoroughly mixed.
Now your cannoli filling is done- it’s really that simple!
If you aren’t going to be serving this right
away, store the filling in the refrigerator.
When you are ready to serve, pipe the filling i
the cannoli shells (I used a plastic sandwich bag that
I snipped the corner off  of as a makeshift pastry bag),
and garnish with a drizzle of caramel sauce
for an elegant and yummy display.
If you have chips you can also pipe the
filling on top and create cute little open-faced cannoli desserts.
A third option is to put the filling in a serving dish as a dip.


I was surprised by how simple this dish really is and oh-so-tempting! I was digging into this filling with a spoon before I even got to filling the shells! This is a great way give yourself and your family a homemade treat to fill that pumpkin craving without even turning on the oven!  

For more recipes, check out the rest of our Home Expert Series, or head to our Pinterest page!

Follow us on Pinterest >

Transforming a Dresser from Blah to Beautiful


Hello again my Beauties! Are you ready for another edition of the DIY Home Expert Series? Today I want to show you how you can take an old piece of furniture that some might find boring and hideous and make it gorgeous. I find that the uglier the piece is to begin with, the more magnificent the transformation.


For today's makeover I decided I was gonna bring this funky, outdated dresser back to a fun and functioning piece of furniture that someone would be proud to show off.

This piece needed help.



First, I took off the hardware with screwdriver. Since the hardware was so specific to the style of the dresser I decided to reuse them. I cleaned them and gave them a shot of some brassy gold spray paint. Next, I had to update the body of the dresser. I wanted the piece to be bold and fun, yet still have a little bit of elegance. I chose a deep blue/teal hue.


I used a mineral/chalk paint because it adheres really well to these type of pieces. I lightly sanded the whole dresser with 60 grit sand paper, wiped it down with warm water and a cloth, and let it dry. With mineral/chalk paint I like to do thin coats because it dries quicker, allowing me to move on to my next coat faster.


I painted the whole dresser giving it two thin coats. When it was dry I used my wax and a brush and applied it to the dresser. After about 24 hours of letting the wax cure I used a soft cloth and buffed the whole thing.When it was ready I put my brassy hardware back on.


Can you even believe that ugly old outdated dresser is now this fabulous blue accent piece? Don’t shy away when you see an ugly piece of furniture. Think of the potential that it could have and what a statement it could make in your home.


I am happy to say that this piece sold right away and is now enjoying its renewed life in a new home. Until next time, have a beautiful day!

For more DIY projects, check out the rest of our Home Expert Series featuring a lineup of fabulous interior design bloggers! 

Follow us on Pinterest >

Easy DIY Chippy Shutters for Fall


Jessica Bures, from Live Randomly Simple, is getting us in the fall spirit! She's teaching us how to make easy, cute, and festive chippy shutters to get you in the mood for autumn.

I am so excited for fall to get here! Yes, I will greatly miss summer, but fall is my season! I love all of the colors, Halloween decorations, pumpkins...I could go on and on! So I thought I would show you a great project to DIY at home this beautiful season.


We found these shutters on Craigslist and drove over an hour to get them, because we were obsessed! Are they not awesome, and chippy, and perfect!? After a while of staring at their beauty I realized I should probably get started on making something fun out of them. What better way to kick start fall than with chippy shutters?

Start by spraying poly on both sides to secure the chippy paint and preserve them. This step can be skipped, but it will really help them last even longer.


Next, grab a thin, wooden board and draw out pumpkins and crows. The size will depend on the height of your shutter. The pumpkin should be about 10 inches thinner than the shutter and the crow should be about 3/4 of the size of the pumpkin. Use a jig saw to cut out the shapes.


After you get your pumpkin and crow cut out, grab a helper and paint them!


Once the crow dries, tie a piece of raffia around the neck.

I painted the pumpkin orange, then I used dark briwax to go over them and give them some fun detail and make them look old and dingy. I have a full post on my blog on how to apply and use briwax. It is my favorite supply to have in stock!


Next we are going to make the banners. Grab some burlap and cut triangles to fit across the shutter. You can do FALL or BOO or whatever verbiage suits your style.


After you get the triangles cut, grab some black paint and write on the letters (or use stencils if you want them to be perfect.) I just drew mine on because I think it gives the piece a more vintage feel. 


To turn it into a banner just flip the letters over and hot glue a piece of twine across the back. Leave about 6-8 inches of twine on both sides of the banner to tie it to the shutter.


Once the triangles are hot glued onto the twine, tie it onto the shutter. The final step is to grab a piece of thin wood to use for the stem of the pumpkin. It can be any shape or size and using a piece of scrap is best to not be wasteful!
Once you have all of the elements done and dried its time to attach them. Grab a nail gun and nail them onto the shutter carefully. I used brad nails to attach it. If you do not have a nail gun you can glue them on or even staple them. Just use what you have and make it work!


Well I hope you enjoyed this tutorial and feel free to leave any questions or comments below! Making these Fall shutters made me even more excited to get all of my fall decor out and start decorating.



For more fun projects, check out the rest of our Home Expert Series or head to our Pinterest page

Follow us on Pinterest >

DIY Kids' Toy Bookends


Julie Grimmett, from Julie is Coco and Cocoa, is sharing a super creative project with us. Now that the kids are headed back to school, learn how to turn their old toys into fabulous home accents! 


Kids outgrow toys. It’s just part of life. But, as a Mom, there are certain toys that I find more sentimental than other toys; there are a special a few that I just want to hang on to a little while longer. I’m taking some of their toy dinosaurs to turn into bookends.



Your chosen toy(s)
A piece of wood (I found these wooden blanks already beveled)
Epoxy glue
Spray paint



Start by attaching your toys to the
wooden base using the epoxy glue.
Follow the directions on the package for
gluing your item and allowing it to dry completely.
Once your toys are securely attached you
can start spray painting them.
I chose a metallic finish spray paint for my dinosaur bookends.

Apply several light coats of spray paint,
allowing the paint to dry between coats,
until your toys are completely covered.
Once the final coat of spray paint is dry
your bookends are ready to be used.

The teenagers, in particular, thought that these ‘metal’ dinosaurs were really cool, even though it’s my younger son who has been playing with the dinosaurs most recently. A small warning: Do be careful to make sure your child is really, completely finished with a toy before you turn it into a bookend. My youngest son wasn’t thrilled at first with the dinosaur bookends.

Once I started making toy bookends, I just couldn’t stop! So here is a second bookend option.
Wooden toy vehicles
Four 4.5”x4.5” wooden blocks
Hammer and nails
Black and yellow paint

Nail two wooden blocks together to make each bookend.
Then paint them black and allow them to dry.
Use your yellow paint to add the road lines on your blocks.
My stripes are each ½” long.
Use the epoxy to attach your toy cars to the road on your bookends.
My youngest son in particular really liked these bookends.
I think mainly because I didn’t do anything to alter the toys themselves.
He liked the addition of the road for the cars to drive on.
Now when your son or daughter is finished with a sentimental favorite you can give it new life as a bookend for their bedroom. (And if you don’t have any extra toys you can always grab some inexpensively from your local toy store.) This is a simple way to add some fun to your bookcase! 

For more fun DIY projects, check out the rest of our Home Expert Series or visit our Pinterest page
Follow us on Pinterest >

Scrumptious Loaded Potato Soup


Mary Beth, of Cupcakes and Crinoline, is back with another moutwatering recipe. This time, she's teaching us how to make a loaded potato soup that's perfect for the upcoming season. Get ready for pretty leaves and warm bellies.

With the promise of cooler days ahead my mind is already turning to recipes that warm you up from the inside out, like this delicious potato soup.  It’s one of the easiest potato soup recipes I have ever made and what makes it even better is that it’s made in a slow cooker.  You can start it in the morning and it will be ready for dinner.  All you need to do is add a nice crusty bread and some fresh fruit and you have an entire meal for any day of the week.



4 pounds of a thin-skinned potato (I used small golden potatoes) -
peeled and cut into ¼ inch slices
1 small onion, chopped
1 -32 ounce container of chicken broth
2 tsp. salt2 cups half-and-half
Fresh Ground Pepper (optional)
Shredded cheddar cheese (to garnish)
Crumbled bacon (to garnish)

Layer the potatoes on the bottom of the slow cooker.  Top with chopped onions.
Sprinkle with salt and fresh ground pepper if desired.
Pour broth over the potatoes and onions.
Cook on low for 8 hours.
Use a potato masher to gently mash the cooked potatoes.  
Don’t fully mash them- the purpose is only to make them a bit smaller.  
If you don’t have a potato masher you can use a fork to break up the potatoes.
Gently stir in half and half and heat on high for an additional 20 minutes.
Ladle into bowls, serve with fresh ground pepper, shredded cheese and crumbled bacon.


This soup would be perfect on game day or for a good old-fashioned family dinner.  

For dessert, try Mary Beth's apricot & blueberry cake or check out our Pinterest page for more recipes.

Follow us on Pinterest >

Turn an Old Dresser into a Statement Piece


Hello again my Beauties! So happy to be back again with another DIY project for the Home Expert Series.
For this post I am going to show you how, by adding a punch of color and
some spray paint, you can create a stunning statement piece for your home.


You can see from the  picture below that I had this old, boring, and beat up small dresser. It had a very dull and tired appearance. I wanted to change it into a piece that would make a statement without going overboard (which is surprisingly easy to do). 


First of all I removed all the old outdated hardware. Now I could have easily gone and bought new, expensive hardware to place on the dresser, but I chose to do use the hardware I already had. I removed all my hardware and using a claw hammer lightly tapped the old bent and beat up back plates off of them.


Once the back plates were off I gave all the reusable parts a coating of some brass spray paint. I also sprayed some of the spray paint into the cap to get a little puddle and used a small paint brush to paint on the keyhole covers of the drawers.


I like my pieces to feel cohesive so I regularly use paint colors I have used on past projects. For this dresser, I mixed up a custom red that I had used on a Rescued Cabinet Makeover.


I painted the whole dresser and when it was dry I gave it a coat of wax and buffed it to give it a nice heirloom finish.


It was a simple makeover that made a big difference! Now go look around your home and see how one small punch of color could change the way the room feels. Until next time, have a beautiful day!


For more projects, check out the rest of our Home Expert Series, or visit our Pinterest page! 

Follow us on Pinterest >

YOU VOTE! The Best "Home Expert Series" Post of the Summer


The ultimate DIY. We want you to tell us your favorite home project from our Home Expert Series. We've compiled a list of every project, with (very) brief summaries, and amazing images. So take a scroll down the page and leave your top pick in a comment at the bottom (**RULES EDITED AT BOTTOM**)- we're dying to know what you think! 


1: 205 Votes
2: 4 Votes
3: 2 Votes
4: 14 Votes
5: 5 Votes
6: 1 Vote
7: 0 Votes
8: 160 Votes
9: 1 Votes
10: 6 Votes
11: 74 Votes
12: 0 Votes
13: 15 Votes


Congratulations to Jessica Bures and her fantastic DIY vintage suitcase end table! Huge shoutout to all of our guest bloggers. Stay tuned for The Best "Home Expert Series" Post of the Fall. 

1. DIY Vintage Suitcase End Table by Jessica Bures


As the brains behind Live Randomly Simple, Jessica has a knack for creating gorgeous DIY pieces like the vintage suitcase end table you see above. 

To vote for Jessica, write "1" in the comment section below. 

2. Homemade Apricot & Bluberry Cake by Mary Beth


Not only is Mary Beth an expert when it comes to Cupcakes and Crinoline, but she can make a mean cake too. 

To vote for Mary Beth, write "2" in the comments below.

3. Thrift Store Landscape Painting Upcycle by Julie Grimmett


Julie, from Coco and Cocoa, showed us how to create a beautiful piece of artwork in just a few easy steps.

To vote for Julie, write "3" in the comments below.

4. Stuffed Chicken Breast with Alfredo Sauce & Roasted Red Potatoes by Alicia Pileggi


Bask in The Crafterglow. Alicia Pileggi showed us how to make a mouthwatering stuffed chicken breast that will please the crowds! 

To vote for Alicia, write "4" in the comments below.

5.  Make an Entrance! How to Create a Gorgeous Entryway by Gabrielle Anschau


Gabrielle has certainly earned the name "Trend Mogul." In this post she gave us some tips on how to really make an entrance. 

To vote for Gabrielle, write "5" in the comments below.


6.  DIY Laminate Dresser Refurbish by Cassie Bustamante


Cassie knows how to stay Primitive and Proper. She dissolved our laminate fears with this stunning dresser refurbish! 

To vote for Cassie, write "6" in the comments below.


7. Creating the Ultimate Guest Room by Bryn Huntpalmer
Bryn can give you some killer tips to help you Modernize your home. She taught us how to create the perfect atmosphere for your house guests. 
To vote for Bryn, write "7" in the comments below.

8. DIY Forsythia Wreath by Courtney Hamby
Courtney's home, known as The Hamby Home, is filled with gorgeous DIY projects. She showed us how to make this easy and beauitful forsythia wreath. 
To vote for Courtney, write "8" in the comments below.
Carmen, from Viva Fashion, gave us the inside scoop on decorating you home with a tight budget. Her tips are helpful, clever, and simple! 
To vote for Carmen, write "9" in the comments below.
As soon as Pamela, aka Brooklyn Farm Girl, showed us this post the office became drool city. These fluffy morsels take no time to make and look absolutely heavenly. 
To vote for Pamela, write "10" in the comments below.
Karin, from Art is Beauty, has been writing for Pursuit of Home for a few months now and her projects never fail to impress! 
To vote for Karin, write "11" in the comments below.
Mrs. Hines' Class has tons of fabulous interior design tips and tricks. Sharon taught us how to create the ultimate outdoor space to soak up the last few weeks of summer. 
To vote for Sharon, write "12" in the comments below.

13. DIY No-Sew Pillow Covers by Ada Gonzalez
Ada, from Ada's Interior Design, showed us how to make these super cute pillow covers without having to sew a stitch! 
To vote for Ada, write "13" in the comments below.

Please place your vote by commenting with numbers 1-13 below. The winner will be announced on September 23rd.
 Don't forget to check out more awesome DIY projects and home tips on our Pinterest page!
Follow us on Pinterest >

Delicious Caramel-Dipped Apples


We're thrilled to announce that Tim & Mary Vidra from 17 Apart have partnered up with to share some of their mouthwatering recipes exclusively with Pursuit of Home. 


Unfortunately, holding onto summer is not an option — as the temperatures cool in the mornings and evenings, and as the sun begins to set a little earlier each night, autumn becomes a beckoning reality on the horizon. With fall comes new beginnings and apple season, which, in our house, welcomes a seasonal ritual of making caramel apples. This is such an easy, fun,  and slightly messy way to spend an afternoon with the kids.



8 apples, washed, dried and stems removed*
8 craft sticks or chopsticks
16 ounces caramel squares
3 tablespoons milk
Assorted coatings for apples
(I used 1 cup dried cherries, 1 cup pistachios,
1 cup dried banana chips and maldon salt),
roughly chopped in a food processor  
*Some store bought apples have a wax coating —
try not to purchase these as the caramel
will not stick to the wax.
If you cannot avoid this here is
a good tutorial on removing the wax.


(Having all of your ingredients prepped ahead
of time is super important because once the
caramel is warm you'll need to work quickly.)


Combine caramel and milk in a bowl.
Fill a medium saucepan a quarter of
they way full with water.
To make a double boiler, which will
help melt the caramel without
fear of sticking to the pan,
place a heat safe glass bowl on top of the pan.
The steam from the simmering water will
provide the needed heat to evenly
melt the caramel to a smooth consistency.

While you are waiting for the caramel to melt,
hold the apples firmly and push the craft sticks
about halfway through the top of the apples.

Once the caramel achieves a smooth,
creamy texture remove the pan
from the stove and get ready to dip the apples.
The steam from the double boiler will
continue to heat the caramel for
a few minutes once you start dipping.

Holding the apples by the stick,
tilt down into the melted caramel, rolling until coated.
Allow any excessive amount of caramel to
run off before adding toppings.
Immediately roll or sprinkle the apples
with the various toppings and place
on a parchment-lined cookie sheet to set and dry.
Create different flavor pairings with various toppings
like a banana chips, a mix of pistachios and dried cherries.
Or, my personal favorite, a dusting of maldon salt.
Enjoy immediately or wrap in parchment paper
to store in the refrigerator for up to one week.

Don't these look amazing? Once you wipe the drool off your keyboard, try making this
delicious apricot & blueberry cake or head over to our Pinterest page for more DIY projects & recipes!
Follow us on Pinterest >

DIY No-Sew Pillow Covers


We're happy to announce that Ada Gonzalez from Ada's Interior Design has partnered up with to share some DIY projects exclusively with Pursuit of Home. Get ready to craft!


I love shopping for decorative pillows for my clients, but since I specialize in affordable decorating solutions I aim to shave costs whenever I can without affecting the quality of the design and comfort of my clients. A new decorative pillow can cost from approximately $15 to $275. So, a great solution is to keep your old pillow insert and replace your pillow cover.

Great, right? However, you still have to either spend good money on a pillow cover or sew your own pillow cover. Who has time to sew? I barely had time to chew my breakfast this morning. Also, sewing is not the easiest task for those of us who are enemies with their sewing machine. My machine spends most of it’s time giving me the evil eye (of the needle). 


So, until my sewing machine and I become BFFs, my economical solution is to make pillow covers without sewing, in just one minute! Yep, it takes just ONE MINUTE to make these pillow covers using simple folding techniques.

Instead of having to buy tons of different pillows for every season, or holiday, or every time your pillow starts to fade, simply invest in buying fabric (you just need 1 yard!) to cover 14” to 16” pillows.

The pretty pink chevron pillow cover I created for this post cost me just $4.00. I know, amazing, right?!

Just 1 yard (36” of fabric) 
Old 14” or 16” pillow 


Fold the yard of fabric into a square (36”x36”)


Place pillow in the center and diagonal to the corner of the fabric


Fold right flap onto the pillow


Fold left flap onto the pillow


Tuck in the edges (as if you were gift wrapping a present)


Fold over the remaining flaps


Tie the two visible flaps into a soft knot


Now, admire your work.


Bonus! You now have 2 designs. One side has a bow design, and the other is a beautiful flat design.



For more interior decorating tips (with an economical flair of course!), head over to Ada's website. Or check out the rest of the Home Expert Series on's Pinterest page! 

Follow us on Pinterest >

5 Tips for Creating an Outdoor Oasis


We're so excited to announce that Sharon Hines from Mrs. Hines' Class has partnered up with to share some home decorating tips exclusively with Pursuit of Home. Enjoy!

With this sweltering heat minimizing the time I spend outdoors, I actually found myself looking forward to cooler fall weather so that I can tend to my neglected garden and spend evenings dining al fresco. I love entertaining outdoors; people scattered across the yard under the warm glow of party lights strung under the patio, helping themselves to beverages, roasting s’mores, and laughing. The atmosphere is so important when having and outdoor party, I thought I'd offer some tips to help you create your own outdoor oasis!


With just a little imagination, creativity, and these 5 easy tips, anyone can turn a bare backyard into an outdoor oasis.

Space Planning

First, decide how you want to use the space. Do you plan on dining outside, growing an herb or vegetable garden, soaking in a hot tub, or napping under the trees?

Then, collect images of spaces you love to help you determine how you want your space to look. Consider the color palette, furniture construction (such as rattan, metal or wood), and hardscape materials (such as crushed granite, flagstone, or concrete). 


Tip #1: Create "getaways" by tucking seating into the nooks and crannies of your space.


Either sketch your ideas on graph paper (so that your drawing is to scale), or schedule a consultation with a landscaper. There is usually no obligation with a consultation, and you’ll benefit from the knowledge and expertise of a professional.


Tip #2: The stepping stone at the end of a path should be larger than the rest, signifying a landing spot.

Now, it’s time to get to work! You can DIY or hire a professional. If you hire a professional, you can implement the design plans in stages, as you can afford it. If you are choosing the DIY route, there are plenty of online tutorials on everything from fire pits to pallet furniture to decking.


Tip #3: Save money on outdoor furniture and accessories by repurposing items you may already have and shopping second hand.


Light up the night. You’ll want to add plenty of lighting so that you can enjoy your space at night. There’s something so magical about string lights cascading across the sky or twinkling from the trees.


Tip #4: If you lack the space to hang lights, you can achieve the same feel using stake lights, candles, lanterns or tiki torches.


Personalize it! Add small details to make your oasis reflect your personality. 


Tip #5: Use old board games as table tops. Hang your family monogram. Add birdbaths and birdhouses.

Creating the backyard of your dreams is easy! All you need is some time and a vision. 

Now that you've learned some tips for decorating your home's exterior, here are some tips for decorating your interior. For even more DIY ideas, check out our DIY Pinterest board

Follow us on Pinterest >

Refurbishing an Old, Worn Out Desk


Hello again my Beauties! In this post I am going to show you how to bring an old worn out piece of furniture back to life with just a few simple steps. 


Here is a desk here that my sister had (generously) given to me for free but, to be honest, it had seen better days. It was outdated and worn out. Structurally it was in great condition, it just needed a little beautification! It just so happens that beautification is my specialty. 


First things first, it needed to be cleaned. I used some hot water and light soap to scrub the whole thing down. Since I knew I was going to be using a gel stain on the top, I also lightly sanded the top with some 120 grit sandpaper. I want to scuff up the finish, but not bring it all the way down to the raw pine. Once I sanded it I lightly cleaned it again and let it dry.


One of my favorite stains to use to on wood is General Finishes Gel Stains. They are easy to use and don’t require the full stripping of the wood. I used a foam brush to liberally apply the stain and then using straight swipes with the grain then wiped off the excess with a lint free cloth. Be sure to go in one direction like you would when putting on wood stain. (the General Finishes website has a ton of helpful advice and more in-depth explanation of the process for those who are nervous.) Now depending on how dark you want it you can leave it with one coat or let it fully cure and do another.I really wanted to darken it up so I did two coats. 


While that was drying I removed the old blocky style hardware. I wanted to give it a much more updated and sleek style so I decided to use knobs instead of pulls. I removed the old hardware and filled in the old holes with wood filler. Once the wood filler was dry I sanded it down smooth, drilled new holes for the knobs, and the drawers and the base were ready for paint. I decided to go with classic blue for the base.


I chose General Finishes Persian Blue Milk Paint. I like that this paint goes on a little more smoother than the mineral paints I normally use. I wanted to go for a sleeker finish and this type of paint gave me that feel. I brushed on my first coat and when it was dry applied the second.


Now normally I like to shabby it up, but I liked how it looked in its pristine condition. I chose some sleek new hardware from my local craft store and attached them to the drawers. All it took was a little time and  patience to completely update this desk. I hope you enjoyed this latest makeover. Until next time, go make someone’s day beautiful! 



We love this desk revival; it's so elegant and country-chic! For more DIY projects, check out our other DIY blog posts, or head over to our Pinterest page! 

Follow us on Pinterest >


Top 10 Favorite Interior Design Regrams


We love finding inspiration pictures on instagram and "regramming" them so our followers can enjoy them too. We compiled a list of our 10 favorite "regrams" for easy viewing all in one place! 


1. Dining Room via @harrisonandco



We love this photo, not only because of the layout, but because of the monochromatic color scheme as well. Adding small pops of green and blue to a mostly grey and white room is a brilliant choice. Obsessed. 

2. Patterened Floor via @elizaashe


These patterns immediately caught our eye when scanning Instagram and we had to regram and share with our followers. We like this post because it shows how easy it can be to combine patterns. This technique is great for pillows, upholstery, bedding, you name it! 

3. Wallpapered Bookshelf via @andreafoltraninteriores


We're in love. Wallpapering the back wall of bookshelves is such a different way to add patterns to a room. It's almost like wallpapering the wall, but less of a commitment. 

4. Photo Wallpaper via @oriente_designs


How cool is this?! Using a photo to wallpaper a wall is such an original, amazing idea. Of course, you'd have to choose a photo you really like, but the end result looks awesome. Or, as one of the commenters noted, "that's dope yo." 

5. Green Wall via @manu_albuquerque


This flat green wall color is phenomenal. Flat design is super trendy right now, so this photo tugged at our design-loving heartstrings. Everything in this photo is super well organized (even the bottles on the table!) and we love that.

6. All Pink Everything via @yonasoycandles


Because pink. That's why.

7. DIY Mural via @diyconfessions


This mural is beyond stunning. We love the bold simplicity and the color choice. Any kid would be lucky to have a nursery as funky as this one!

8. Symmetrical Seating via @local_milk


There's something strangely beautiful (in a Wes Anderson kind of way) about the angle and symmetry of this photo. It almost looks like it was taken inside of a dollhouse - so cool!

9. Bold Colors via @thechroniclesofhome

LOVE these colors! Via @thechroniclesofhome. 💙💚💜 #interiordesign #interiordecorating #furniture #furnituredotcom

A photo posted by (@furnituredotcom) on


Everything about this photo is fabulous. We love the arrangement, the colors, the patterns, the shapes...everything. 

10. Lime Green Accents via @unpackdesign


The lime green accents bring this whole picture together. We really like this green paired with the muted coral/beige wall. 

Aren't these pictures gorgeous? For more inspiration, follow us on Instagram and Pinterest

Follow us on Instagram >




Easy, Buttery Homemade Soft Pretzels




We're happy to announce that Pamela Reed from Brooklyn Farm Girl has partnered up with to share some scrumptious recipes exclusively with Pursuit of Home. Dig in! 

As a kid one of my favorite treats were soft pretzels.  But we didn't make them from scratch in my house; Mom always had a box of frozen pretzels in the freezer.  These were easy to make: take them out and throw them in microwave for one minute and then sprinkle them with the tiny salt packet it came with.  Boom- soft pretzel.

Many years later, I still have cravings for  soft pretzels.  Because I live in New York,  I  often walk by a soft pretzel vendor and am immediately hit with a pretzel craving that lasts the rest of the day.  At a baseball game? Why yes, nice gentleman carrying a tray of soft pretzels on his head, throw me one for a reasonable $8.00. (It's the price you pay for love.)

Even when I'm at a home in my kitchen, I can satisfy my cravings and make my own soft pretzels.  It's so easy! You're almost guaranteed to already have the ingredients you'll need and they're ready in less than 45 minutes.   Although I loved those frozen soft pretzels as a girl, nothing beats a homemade buttery soft pretzel that is warm and fluffy.  Goodness, I'm getting all dreamy just thinking about it.


When I’m craving a soft pretzel I don’t want to wait hours to let the dough rise, I kind of want them right now. Right in my belly. In this recipe we’re only going to let the dough 30 minutes and then let them bake for 10 minutes.  So simple.

So dive in, get your hands covered in flour and get ready to enjoy!


1 ½ cups warm water
2 and ¼ teaspoons instant yeast
1 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon sugar 
3 ½ cups flour
1 egg
Salt for sprinkling on top of these yummy pretzels
(coarse, pretzel salt or even regular salt if that’s all you have)


Preheat oven to 425 degrees (F).  
Line baking sheet with silicone
baking mat or grease the baking sheet.
Dissolve yeast in warm water in large bowl.  
Stir with a spoon to mix it around.
Add salt and sugar and continue to mix.
Add flour and mix good until dough is thick.  
If you feel like the dough is still too wet,
add ¼ cup of flour additional until you get it thick.  
While in bowl knead the dough for 2 minutes.
 Knead it good.  
Form dough into ball and let sit for 30 minutes, covered.
Rip apart 8 sections of dough, approximately same size.  
Each section equals the size of your pretzel.
Flour counter surface and roll each individual section
out to a rope that is about 20-25 inches long.
Once ropes are made then wrap them up to make a pretzel shape.
(Lay the rope flat, curve the two ends up,
twist them together and seal to the bottom curve.)
In a small bowl beat the egg and then lightly
brush all surfaces of each pretzel with it.  
Make sure to put some between the twist 
and the curve, to seal the pretzel shape.
Place on baking mat and sprinkle with salt.
Bake for 10 minutes and then turn your broiler on
and bake for 3-5 more minutes.
 Keep a eye on the pretzels so they don’t burn.  
As soon as they reach desired brown/crispness on top,
remove from the oven.
Eat up!

Makes about 8 soft pretzels.


These look delicious! These would be great with stuffed chicken breast and roasted red potatoes! For even more recipes and home decor tips, check out the rest of our Home Expert Series on Pinterest
Follow us on Pinterest >

5 Tips for Decorating Like a Pro (on a Budget)


We're so excited to announce that Carmen Ordonez from Viva Fashion has partnered up with to share amazing interior design tips exclusively with Pursuit of Home. Enjoy!


There’s something about flipping through interior design magazines that gets me all giddy.  I immediately start thinking “ooh, wouldn’t this look nice in my living room!”  or “I need to add more color.” But let’s be honest, many times decorating can be challenging and having a restricted budget doesn’t help. Well not to fret, I’ve rounded up some of my favorite tips to help you decorate like a pro, without breaking the bank.

So without further adieu, here are a few tips to help you get started.

Tip #1: Add plants

[Photo source:]

If there’s one thing interior designers love, it a good plant. Adding plants is an easy way to add visual interest and freshness to your space. You can add them in a corner of your living room, in the kitchen, bathroom or on a coffee or dining table. Plus, you can find many designer favorites like a fiddle leaf fig tree or succulents for under $40 bucks.

Not only do they look stylish, but plants also help purify the air and remove toxins, which is great for your health too. However, If you’re like me and can’t keep any plant alive, try to look for plants that require very little maintenance (or water for that matter). I personally love bamboo palms and snake plants. They look beautiful, don’t require much work, and are non-toxic to pets and children (which is also something important to consider when picking plants).

Tip #2:  Add some artwork

[Photo source:]

Artwork can immediately make any home look more sophisticated and it’s a great way to show-off your personality. Online flash sales sites like Gilt sell fabulous artwork that won’t break the bank and stores like HomeGoods have great options as well. 

If you’re looking to make a statement with your walls, you can also try a gallery wall. They don’t have to be expensive, you can go to IKEA or Target and find affordable frames for under $50 dollars. Simply fill them up with family photos, old letters, or your child’s artwork. I actually framed a drawing my 2 year-old made me for Mother’s Day and it sits in my home office. You can also get creative and frame green leaves or other items from nature.

Tip #3: Accessorize

[Photo source:]

If you’re on a budget, but still want to find some easy ways to revamp your home, look for small, affordable accessories like decorative pillows or a throw for a couch. It’s crazy how these accessories can instantly change the look of a room.

Tip #4: Add Color

[Image via]

When it comes to decorating we're often afraid of color, but that’s simply because we don’t know where to start. A rule many interior designers use is to start with a neutral color (warm and cool tones) and then layer on your accent colors. The accent colors should be limited to two colors. Again, you don’t need to splurge on these accent colors, simply look for accessories like we discussed in the prior tip.

Tip #5: Less is More

[Photo source:]

Don’t feel like you have to over design! As with many things, when it comes to design, less is more. You want your home to feel curated and not like you  picked a bunch of random things and threw them all in one room. When in doubt, remove a few items.  As an added bonus, you can donate to charity or even have a garage sale while you're decluttering your space!

We hope Carmen's tips can help you design your home on a budget. To design the perfect guest room, check out this post by Bryn Huntpalmer! For even more design tips, check out our Pinterest page! 

Follow us on Pinterest >