Brave New Home

creating authenticity where it matters most


DIY Bath Foam Paints

DIY Bath Foam PaintsI like to do special little things with my son to celebrate the end of the work/school week—life is about the little things, right?  His internal clock shifted (read, he’s going to bed about a full two hours later each night consistently—talk about an adjustment!) so we’ve been having more time to enjoy each evening.materials for DIY bath foam paintsI had given this a try before when he was a bit younger but Anak was largely uninterested.  Since I had all the materials on hand, I decided to give it another go.  All you need is a muffin tin, shaving cream, food coloring, and a brush.shaving cream with food coloringJust put some shaving cream and 5-8 drops of food coloring.stirring up shaving cream with food coloringThen mix it up with something non-pourous that won’t stain, like a plastic chop stick!still stirring up shaving cream with food coloringStir it up…
finished colored bath foam paintsTa da!  Yeah, I really did show ya’ll how to mix shaving cream with food coloring :P  I know it’s not rocket science but after mixing all our foam bath paints, I realized I didn’t make Anak’s favorite color—pink!  So I used the opportunity to snap a few more pics.painting on the shower door with bath foam paintsHere’s one of his creations.  I had envisioned us making shapes and pictures for minutes and minutes (which for a toddler is like saying hours and hours) like we usually do in the fog of the glass door but like most projects with kids go, his interest wasn’t in the purpose of the project.foam bath paints sprinkled with waterHe was much more fascinated in the way water drops removed the color from the shaving cream.pouring water on foam paintsAnd how the foamy paint floated when you poured water into it.

My tips for you and your kiddos if you attempt to make your own bath paint foam paints are to:

– Do a test patch to make sure the bath foam paints don’t stain whatever surface you’re painting on.  They shouldn’t stain the bathtub but we all know how the color red doesn’t like to play by the rules…

– Don’t actually let your kids paint while they’re taking a bath.  Little eyes are sensitive and the last thing you’d want is to get shaving cream into the water.

– Make sure you don’t have any portrait sessions coming up!  The stain on the skin from the  purple foam bath paint looked a lot like a bruise.

Linked to Lines Across, Alderberry Hill, City Farmhouse, The Gunny Sack, Home Stories A to Z, It’s Overflowing, Gingersnap Crafts, The Shabby Creek Cottage, House of Hepworths.

Have you ever tried making bath foam paint?  Do you have any other favorite bath time activities to share?

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Goods for the Home

One of the questions I get asked most frequently is, Where did you get that grey sunburst mirror in your bedroom?  Answer: Home Goods.  It’s usually a disappointing response because shopping at Home Goods is a lot like treasure hunting….in a treasure trove!  But still, every store carries different items that change on a weekly basis.master_bedroom_from_entrance

I always find the best mirrors at Home Goods without fail.  Check out some of my finds on my latest shopping trip:

home goods grey aged sunburst mirrorThis sunburst mirror has almost a Roman vibe to it.  Love the color!  And it’s sorta similar to the sunburst mirror I have in our bedroom, too.home goods natural wood sunburst mirrorI just loved this sweet flower-inspired mirror.  home goods tribal basketsThese baskets were just so much fun!  Perhaps something that could be painted on if you already owned similar baskets.home goods writable square jarsThese canisters embody all the elements of my dream kitchen: white, wood, and modern.  The “label” can be written on, too.


I could see those canisters in an earthy, modern vignette like this.home goods pillows 2Oh, the pillows!  I was in sensory overload in the numerous pillow isles.  I was looking for a bolster with down feathers for our bed and while quite a few fit the bill, I still don’t quite know what direction I’m taking the bedroom.  I really adored the “love” pillow and will be storing that idea away to DIY in the future.  I did end up picking up a set of pillowcases (in the lower right hand corner) for $5.

home goods fuschia x nailhead stoolsI definitely have a weakness for fuchsia, can you tell?

I would put a pair together at the end of the bed of a neutral bedroom for an injection of color.grey wingback chairThis grey wingback chair reminded me of the one from Ikea.


The one from Home Goods is about $100 less but also sacrifices some metal welcome sign I was really smitten with this sign at the store.  I think it was just so glossy and blue.  Definitely an item I’m glad I passed on—it doesn’t fit my design aesthetic at all.  I think that’s what happens if you stay at one of these kinds of stores for too long; everything starts to look interesting!home goods stone headhodgeAnd this little stone hedgehog was just so sweet.  If I had a garden I’d tuck him into someplace special.

Any items you would have scooped up?  Have you ever noticed the effect that the longer you stay in a store the more intriguing everything becomes?  I think it’s a shopping high!

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Indoor Plant Report Card

I like plants, I really do.  Is the feeling mutual?  Meh, not so much.  Soon after shooting my top of the stairs vignette, my peace lily started peacing out.

I thought it’d be fun to share what indoor plants I currently have, how well I’m doing at keeping them alive, and open a discussion about which indoor plants are the most resilient.  Let’s start by setting the bar low so I can work my way up.peace lilly
Peace lily.  Grade: D
I’ve only had this plant for a few weeks but I’ve quickly reached the point of trying anything to resuscitate life back into it.  I bought this plant for a windowless bathroom (since it is a low light plant after all) but moved it out to a spot with some indirect light to give it a fighting chance.  I think this is about my third time killing owning one of these.        fiddle leaf fig Fiddle leaf tree.  Grade: C-
Oh, Fiddy.  I bought you with the best intentions and with every hope of growing you into a big, beautiful, glorious tree.   I’m considering moving Fiddy to a spot away from the window (which we keep mostly closed during the day) to see if she’ll thrive better elsewhere.close up fiddle leaf figI have a leaf fall off ever now and then but haven’t had any new growth so I’m giving myself a C- for barely maintaining the status quo.sansevieriaSanservaria aka Snake Plant.  Grade: B+
When I started reading up on how to take care of this plant, almost all directions boasted that it thrives in neglect.  I think sometimes I’m guilty of giving a plant too much attention (that’s possible, right?  we’re not talking babies here…) so even that seemed like a challenge.  So far, so good.  I’ve had new growth but a few leaves fall out but I think more new growth on the whole.  So for me, that garners a good grade.pothos on book shelfPothos.  Grade: A
I saved the best for last here.  This is the one and only plant I feel I’ve really mastered taking care of.  I water these once a week and set them outside for some air and sun and they grow and grow.  They’ve even lived to tell of a great mealybug attack!
pothos on top of fridgeThe thing is, I’m not crazy about the way they look.  I’d prefer a plant with a little more height and maybe visual interest.  But since it’s the one plant I know I can take care of, it’s my go-to plant.

I’m anxious to know, what is your go-to house plant?  Know of a plant that can live in a windowless room?  Any tips for any of the plants here?

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Just A Few Little Updates Here and There

Last week, I linked up to The Shabby Creek Cottage‘s summer home tour.  It was a great little challenge for me to update my Home Tour page and if you think about it, summer is an ideal time to re-shoot your home.  There are lots of hours of daylight to play with and for the most part, summer is pretty free of any holiday decorating.

Come and have a look at some of the little tweaks!  top of the stairs half moon turquoise tableI shopped our home to create this little vignette.  I pulled the painting I did from the kitchen and used a plate holder from the dollar store (three for $1!) to prop it up.  close up succulents in wooden bowlThese succulents I snipped from outside—our complex is a verified succulent garden!  I love it!top of the stairs vignette close up of plantI needed some red to complete this vignette so I used my little pocket book of quotations from Mao Tse Tung that I picked up from northern China.  I think I’ll be on the look out for something a bit more permanent.potted sansevieria plant on balconyI started a little garden of potted plants on our bedroom balcony.  Funny little story…empty woven potI had popped into Home Depot looking for a little plant for this pot to spruce up the spare bathroom as we were anticipating having guests over and wound up with a whole car full of plants!sansevieria in carThese potted sansevieria were on sale for $20 a piece and I loved the look of the pot so I filled my car with as many as I could.  By the end of the trip, Anak sounded like a mini Tim Gunn repeating, “Make it work!” as I loaded up the car.  It was one heck of a deal.  dining room vignette cardboard letterJust to put it in perspective, I got this little guy for $12 with the stock brick red plastic planter.shag morrocan rugAnd after much patience and pulling out of my hair I finally landed a shag Moroccan rug for our bedroom!  More bedroom photos to follow—I have a little DIY project still in the works ; ]bedroom dump zoneAnd in the name of keeping it real, here is one of the non-styled (what I like to call “dump zones”) in our master bedroom.  I’ve definitely progressed in instilling organization in some of our home’s other dump zones—just one more to go!

Do you have any fun little updates to share?  At what time of year do you feel your home is most photo worthy?

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Pillow Palooza

diptic finished frontAs I mentioned in phase one of our living room makeover waaaay back in January, I bought five 20×20 down pillow inserts at Ikea for something like $5 a piece.  Tired of having to retire saggy pillows, I thought down inserts might be a smart upgrade.  Not only do they hold their shape better, it’s much easier to store an unused pillow cover than an entire throw pillow (did I mention our place is snug?).pillow_combo_6Here is my dream pillow combination.  I used the guidelines I talked about in an earlier post about how to combine pillows.  But $291 on pillow cases?  I don’t think so.  I get the advice that it’s better to save up to get the highest quality you can afford and invest in the pieces you really love.  And I do really love these pieces…today.  And tomorrow I might love something else.  I’m still just gaining my decorating bearings.  So maybe if I was eying a hutch that I envisioned being passed down through the generations would saving up my pennies make sense.  But these are pillow cases.  Plus I knew I would be able to recreate a similar effect for less if I was just patient enough.  Here’s what I cam up with:
comparable pillowsSo the throw blanket isn’t exactly a pillow but I couldn’t find the color and texture I wanted for a price I was comfortable with and this rust colored nubby blanket fits the bill perfectly.  The throw blanket was from Marshall’ room with pillowsThe pair of Greek key pillowcases were bought on closeout on Etsy and the Richloom Giverny in Chamelion pillowcase is from Gina Sew Stuff‘s Etsy shop.  Gina has been one of the most responsive and helpful Etsy owners I’ve worked with and her pillows are quality—I highly recommend checking out her shop!  If you squint, I think the colors and pattern are somewhat similar to Schumacher’s Chiang Mai Dragon print, whaddya think?corner with pillowsI thought pillows would complete the space but I’m still feeling like something is amiss.  Maybe the couch is just not tailored enough?rust colored blanket in basketI also picked up this woven basket from Marshall’s for $13 to store the throw blanket in.mounted art lamp

And if you follow Brave New Home on Facebook, you’ll recognize this gallery light I picked up from a thrift shop for $3.  I literally spent more on light bulbs than the fixture itself!  I just mounted it to a piece of scrap wood painted white.

Do you prefer envelope folds or zippered enclosures for your pillowcases?  And are you with me, do you feel like even with the pillows the couch area is missing some oomph?  What is it?  I’m scratching my head here…

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