No Sew Pom Pom Throw

No Sew Pom Pom Throw


Today I’m going to make us a little cooler.

That’s right.

You and me.

Wearing our perms and over-sized sequin bows in our hair with our stirrup pants with our t-shirts gathered to one side with a clip and extra big shoulder pads.

Nothing but cool going on around here…

…all because we know how to add a little hygge to our decor.Continue reading

The Pages of Our Lives

The Pages of Our Lives


A couple of years ago for Christmas, my sister, Whitney, took all my grandmother and grandfather’s love letters and made them into a book.

It was called Letters from Box 54.

There, in print, were all the everyday, the simple, the overlooked and the ordinary of our grandparent’s lives.

But in those moments–shared from letters written long ago with paper and ink, you could catch a glimpse of the overwhelming, incredible, amazing love they shared for each other….

…and see the extraordinary written in every line.

We all loved the book so much that we begged her for more history.  “Make a family tree,” we’d say. “History would come alive under your watch,” we’d encourage.  “You are the perfect family-treeer.  No one could make a family tree like you,” we’d implore.

But to no avail.

She would smile and laugh roll her eyes and shake her head and explain that family trees were a challenge she didn’t really want to take on.

Until this year.Continue reading

DIY Faux Bois Table

DIY Faux Bois Table


Today we are talking about how to paint a DIY faux bois table.

Faux bois.

It and its good friend trompe l’oeil are words I like to work into conversation whenever possible to sound like I wear berets and just flew in from the south of France.

It means “false wood” or a surface that looks like its grained wood, but it’s really something else.

Super fancy, right?

That’s how we roll here at Thistlewood.

But before we go all faux bois….

 ….can I ask you a question?Continue reading

A Journey Well-Carved

A Journey Well-Carved


Welcome to handmade Christmas gift edition 2016.

If you are new here and you’ve never celebrated the holidays with us, I need to start with a little explanation.

Our family makes gifts for each other every year.  We started small.  Someone made soap and then someone knitted something and then there was the year someone made trash cans with faces.

And then all that soaping and knitting and trash-can decorating turned into something a little more elaborate.

Like a picture of a thistle composed entirely of words from my blog.

Or a bowl carved from a tree that my father grew from a sapling.

Or a stone doormat created from pebbles collected from every state in the union and stamped with each state’s bird (no one actually did that, but you never know…it might happen next year).

And so it was on Christmas morning 2016….

….I opened this from my brother.

Continue reading

Top Ten Room Before and Afters for 2016

Top Ten Room Before and Afters for 2016


When I was planning out my top ten posts for yesterday….

….I found all these rooms I befored and aftered in 2016.

I thought I had done one or two.  But when I looked, I found kitchens and offices and upstairs playrooms and farmhouse bedrooms and a few more.

And the best part?

I have so many more scheduled for 2017.

So maybe we should take a look back before we jump forward.  I’m lifting my coffee cup to all the rooms I’ve loved before.

Here are my ten favorites from 2016.Continue reading

Top Ten Projects of 2016

Top Ten Projects of 2016


I feel like there’s so much to discuss right now.


I mean…it’s been an entire holiday since we’ve talked. So here are a few random thoughts from a post-Christmas brain.

1. I can’t WAIT to show you the handmade family Christmas presents from this year. I laughed. I cried. I thought “why didn’t I think of that.” I’m photographing them and posting most of them next week.

2. I hope you like those smocked burlap curtains in the dining room.  Because (insert marching band noise with drum roll here) so many of you have asked about them whenever I post them on the blog.  We have hunted and searched and planned and hoped and dreamed and we finally, finally, FINALLY found the original manufacturer of them. They don’t sell them anywhere currently.


Except for my shop over on Painted Fox. They will be listed for a short time on a first-come, first-serve basis  beginning at 8am Central on January 2nd and then I will be  taking orders after they sell out.

And to celebrate?  I’m giving away a pair of them on the blog on January 2.

I know….right?  2017 is already looking amazing.

3. I got a new camera for Christmas.  It’s a Canon 70d and I’m learning to use it and bringing all of you along on the journey so there’s going to be more photography posts next year.

4. I thought it might be fun to look back at 2016.

So today, I’m posting 10 of my most popular projects for the year.

I gave them stars from easy to hard and from inexpensive to it’s time to dip into the college fund.

Happy creative New Year to you. 🙂Continue reading

Winter Decorating:  Pine Cone Snowflake

Winter Decorating: Pine Cone Snowflake


This post is sponsored by Elmer’s.

Does your house ever get lonely when you take the Christmas tree down?

Can you hear an audible sigh when the mistletoe and holly and wreaths and reindeer are put away?

Mine, too.

That’s why I try to winteristmas decorate.

You know.  When you add a little winter into your Christmas decorating so when all the merry and bright goes away…

….the house still has a few friends.Continue reading

DIY Galvanized Metal Tags

DIY Galvanized Metal Tags


If you ever stopped by my mother’s house on Christmas morning and met my family….

….this post would make even more sense.

Suffice it to say we are a lot.

A lot of family (27 people just with us).

A lot of laughing.  A lot of homemade cookies (not by me).  A lot of inside jokes.  A lot of opinions.  A lot of coffee.

And a lot of handmade presents.

We are also a lot of competitive (in a good way).  Everyone wants to give a gift from the heart.  The kind of gift where you open it and joy trickles out from between the tissue paper.

And it all starts with the wrapping.Continue reading