Happy Halloween! Hope you've enjoyed your day dressed up as your favorite scary creature, dangerous villain or famous celebrity today for Halloween! It's that one day a year even adults get to play pretend from morning until night. It's also that time of year when we may be drawn to add a little more black into our decor. When I decorated our rental home here in AZ last year, I went all out - from faux potion wine bottles I made for the stoop to skulls & gauze hanging in the entry to sheet covered furniture and a Goth-like dress form on the third floor. I think I went so overboard because the year before, I had to pack us up to move, so I really couldn't decorate for Halloween. Although I did decorate for Halloween inside this year, I kept it minimal: Just a simple vignette on the buffet. Most of the items I used were everyday decor accessories I've collected over the years (mostly from HomeGoods): silver vases, a faux snake tray, a croc pattered glass cylinder vase, a magnifying glass and a pair of tall thin buffet lamps (I switched out from the bedroom). For the Halloween details, I just re-used some of my black crows, black gauze, black chains, plus a fantastic wiry branch I found here in AZ. I also used a black velvet top hat I actually wore last year on Halloween and two thrift store items I found last year: A black feather wreath and a silver framed round mirror...

Definitely a mix of new and old here: The faux snake skin tray is my newest find from HomeGoods while the two silver vases are one of my first buys from Target Home (back when they had Furio in the late 90s) . They worked great as risers holding the two sparkle skulls (another HomeGoods find, but from Florida 2010)...

These "BEWARE" letters I got at ZGallerie back in Florida (2010)
Last year, I hung them on the stairway leaning mirror - This year I hung them off a floor standing lamp, draped with black gauze.


In this shot, you can see the simplified Halloween vignette, on the buffet I did my Mummy & Skulls Halloween entry vignette back in Florida in 2010...

 Pinning To the HomeGoods - Happy By Design collaborative pinboard!

The mummy was a fave find from HomeGoods, in Pembroke Pines, FL.
You can read about my other budget friendly Halloween decor, and pin some ideas to save for next year at:

Inspiration To Get Your Spook On

Hitchcock Halloween Hallway

Halloween - Steampunk Style

 Thrifty Treats: DIY Halloween Party Decor

Fall Decor: Tips For Halloween Decorating

Seasonal Changes: Decorating for Halloween and Fall 

 Pinning To the HomeGoods - Happy By Design collaborative pinboard!

Simple Halloween Vignette
Black Gauze Runner (BigLots) layered on a White Linen Runner (HomeGoods)
2 Black Sparkle Skulls (HomeGoods)
1 Black Glass Cyliner Vase holding found branch (HomeGoods)
1 Fluted Round Silver vase (HomeGoods) with Black Velvet Top Hat (BigLots)
5 Faux Crows (Dollar Store)
1 Faux Snake Skin Tray (HomeGoods)
1 Claw Handle Spy Glass (HomeGoods)
2 Silver Buffet Lamps (HomeGoods) with Black lamp Shades (Ikea)
1 Vintage Buffet (Miami Thrift Store)
Silver Round Mirror + Black Feather Wreath + Black Croc Box (Goodwill AZ)

Happy Halloween!
See you Halloween ghosts and goblins next year!
Now it's time to get ready for Thanksgiving dinner and Christmas decorating!
Thanks for stopping by...

Note: This post is sponsored by HomeGoods and the Happy By Design project. All thoughts and opinions are of my own.


Back in 2010, I had watched the movie Vertigo, and got hooked on Hitchcock. Because of the stairs, the movie had inspired my Hitchcock Hallway I decorated in the stairway of our townhome in Florida. Another Hitchcock element of inspiration was of course - The Birds. Ever since then, I've really liked the look of branches, black crows and feathers used for Halloween decor. And now with Pinterest, there is no shortage of inspiration of branches, crows and black feather used in Halloween decor....

Silhouette images are a simple way to frame and layer in a hint of Halloween into your existing book shelves, buffet or entry...

 How fabulous is this? Faux crows crown an elaborate mirror marked with a spooky poem...

Welcome trick-or-treaters and party guests this Halloween with front-door accents that cast just the right spell like these black feather wreaths with simple ribbon - perfect for a double door entry...

 Need a little getaway this Halloween and the Bates Motel is full? Why not try the Miller's Dead & Breakfast... They have a Vacancy...

Love the look of this serving buffet and shield shaped mirror layered with a black feather wreath from Eddie Ross...

 A collection of vintage mirrors can bring depth to your Halloween decor - especially the branches - and reflect more of the candles glow...

A mantel is not required for holiday decorating! Love the look of this other option--a piano -- again adorned with a few branches and crows...

With so many people incorporating hints of vintage into their homes, black crows is a natural mix a for spooktacular setting...

This year, I only did a small vignette on our buffet in the living room, but still inspired by Hitchcock's birds and black feathers... I'll share later on today, but here's a sneak peek...

I lucked out last year, spotting this black feather wreath at Goodwill for only $3!
Also last year...

Sephora and me with our top hats on Halloween. This year, I used the top hat in my vignette...

Don't eat TOO much candy today...
Have a Hauntingly good Halloween!

Thanks for stopping by...


Autumn is all about embracing nature, the harvest and layering rustic elements into beautiful tablescapes and decor. Before the winter chill and before the snow starts to fall, take your indoor rooms outdoors: create engaging gatherings around festive tablescapes, snuggle in your favorite plaid blanket, sip wine with friends, or even enjoy s'mores with your family around an outdoor fireplace. Welcome friends and family to your home with a simple fall festive entry made up of a mum filled urns, dried corn stalks, or perfectly placed  pumpkins on the stoop. Besides experiencing outdoor living for fall at home, this is also the best time of year for families to experience local parks with a picnic, a walk through the golden Fall leaves or enjoy a friendly game of chess. Read more about embracing outdoor living for Fall on my guest blog post today at Hadley Court - Gracious Outdoor Living for Fall.

 Embrace nature, the harvest and rustic elements as welcoming accents to layer into your tablescape... 


  Take advantage of the beautiful Fall weather to visit your local parks... 

Experience the 'Pure Joy' of outdoor living for Fall now, before it passes you by in the blink of an eye...

For additional Fall inspiration, see my boards on Pinterest:

While visiting Hadley Court, also be sure to see my previous guest blog posts...

Thanks for stopping by...


Whether you're moving or just looking for a little extra cash for the holidays, Fall is a great time to have a Garage Sale! When we lived in Florida, our gated community would hold a community Garage Sale, usually on a Saturday & Sunday in November, which also included them advertising the sale. Our last Garage Sale was two years ago - just before we moved out to Arizona. Having lived here now for coming up on two years, we've acquired a few extra things, plus we're ready to let go of some things we were holding onto since moving from Florida. I knew I wanted to have a Garage Sale at the end of October, so I started by purging the clothing closets, bringing most apparel items to a local consignment shop. What didn't consign, I held onto for the Garage Sale. After the closet cleanse, I started to go room by room - searching storage ottomans, other closets, cabinets, drawers and storage case pieces to pull together items to sell. Within two days of having our sale, we not only made almost $1000 dollars, we also got rid of items no longer fitting our lifestyle, and donated the remains of the sale to Goodwill. Here are some tips to help you ensure a successful Garage Sale...

1. Designate a staging or holding area for all the items you're collecting from the house to sell. I used some extra large moving boxes in our garage to hold ours. 2. After pulling together items to sell, decide how many tables you would need to display / merchandise your items.

1. If you only have one round table, borrow two banquet tables from work or a local shop for your sale. 2. If the table tops are in good condition, don't worry about covering, but if needing to be covered, sheets work great. In  FL I covered our tables, but for this sale in AZ, I utilized underneath the table to display small rugs, outdoor planters and wreaths. 3. Other display fixture options are ladders and stacking a box on top of a box. 4. A collapse rolling rack can work for apparel, or ask a local store if they have a t-stand (item rack) to borrow.

1. Group like items together: a. Holiday Decor b. Glass / Ceramic Decor  c. Dishes/Barware  d. Table Linens: Cloths | Runners | Place-mats | Napkins e.Rugs/Runners f. Window Panels  g. Pillows. (TIP: Pull together all pillows into a box and sell all at one price-point OR display color coordinated pillows with window panels and/or rugs - this can be your silent sales-person!)

1. If you have the space in your garage, pre-set tables with your categorized statements -- this way, the morning of your sale, you and your partner can just carry pre-set tables into their place (TIP: Before moving pre-set tables, remove any tall breakable items -- to avoid them tipping and breaking). 2. Ladders can be an excellent means of displaying window panel pairs with coordinated pillows. 

1. Price Point like items grouped together for a quick sale - for example: a rack of tops  can all be $3 each. Also window panels & pillow pairs can be signed as 2 for items. (TIP: Be aware of what items sell for at your local thrift store & price below for quick sale.) 3. Your local office supply store or Walmart carries Avery brand pre-priced garage sale stickers and is a worth while investment because it saves time for pricing. 4. Have a Sharpie handy to write your own prices on blank price dots - large squares of paper

1. Although you can get really fancy with your computer and print signs --  just use good old school poster-board and markers for signs, but print half sheet flyers to post at mailboxes and leave on neighborhood doors the evening before your sale. 2. Using neon colored poster-board will ensure your signing stands out. (TIP: One poster-board can be cut into quarters to give 4 signs from one board.) 3. Use all one color neon (we used neon green). 4. Mylar / helium balloons in coordinating board color also helps people find their way to your sale. 5. Pencil in guidelines with a ruler when writing out your sign (spacing and letter size important to make it easy for people to read at a glance while driving).

Important to include on your Garage Sale sign: 
a. Event title (Garage / Yard Sale) 
b. Street Name (number not necessarily needed - when  they drive down  street, they will see your event)
c. Start and end time of your sale
d. Days & dates of sale (so people know it's a NEW sale & not a leftover sign from another sale)
e. Arrows -- Add LAST while posting signs

1. Carry out pre-set tables into the driveway. 2. Set statements on an angle to left and right side of the driveway, leaving a main aisle down the center. (TIP: Having tables set on an angle will help viability from cars driving by to see what you're selling.) 3. Utilize the inside of the garage, especially the floor, to open and layout any area rugs (TIP: Vacuum rugs + fluff shag rugs with a rake!) 4. Set larger furniture pieces to the front of your sale 

1. If selling chair pairs, set one forward and another as a profile so people can see lines & style from both angles at a glance. 
2. If furniture item is old and dirt cheap, add price sign. If newer and higher priced, do not sign so people will come in to your sale and ask -- You'll have a better opportunity to try to "sell" this item (or they'll see something else) if engaged in a convo). 
3. Use stacked boxes inside garage to lean & angle wall art for people to see everything at a glance vs. keeping all pictures together in one stack. 

TIP: Pick a space with good natural light to snap a few pics of your garage sale items - Share these pics in a Facebook Sneak Peek garage Sale Album - FILLED with hashtags -- also share album link on G+,  and especially share pics of sale items & event on Twitter and Instagram...

TIP: Since Craigslist has a limited amount of photos you can post, create a few image quads, again of similar merchandise you're selling (and minus the "tips"!)

TIP: If someone is coming by to pick up something they spotted from your online shares, pull a few extra goodies aside just for them -- they can result in an additional sale, and you'll know your finds are going to a good place...

Other Garage Sale Notes & Tips: 

1. At the end of our sale day one, we were able to easily roll up unsold rugs, bring tables inside, and bring in unsold furniture -- and pull back out easily the next morning.

2. Since many items sold off tables day one, I walked through the house to double check for any other items I could part with and sell. Some sold, and what didn't, it at least helped to replenish the tables with product.

3. Simple office file boxes work great on tables to hold loose items like table linens and makes it easy for people to file through. 

4. Open up and display pretty prints and patterns -- try to keep similar color stories together for greater impact. Table runners are good to use displayed on tables, under file box of table linens.

5. If you have any lanterns or hanging light fixtures, use the edge of the garage door opening to display them hanging. (When I had the lanterns in a box, people didn't look, but when I hung them - they sold!)

6. Be aware of any sprinklers that may go off next to your driveway -- We used to plant containers to temporarily cover two, and removed after the sale. 

7. If you have a business, have business cards handy to pass out and help promote your business or gain new customers. Also be sure to have newspaper to wrap breakable goods and a stash of bags to help them carry their garage sale score!

8. Be sure to be present, greet all customers and operate your sale with at least two people -- for safety and to help ensure all opportunities for a sale! 

After the sale: Box up unsold items, itemize for taxes, and drop off donations to your nearest thrift store -- We donated to Goodwill. After we dropped off our donations, we road around the neighborhood to collect signs, flyers and balloons from the sale.

TIP: If you have specific special finds to sell, contact local shops and share your garage sale event with friends -- You never know who may stop by to buy! After all the visits to Kim's Sweet Salvage in Phoenix, I was able to contact her and let her know of some items she may be interested in -- and she was! - from x-back chairs, to fabric, a silver tray, a fur cape and vintage opera gloves -- perfect for Sweets!

We asked each person who came to the sale, " What brought you here today?" and learned it was a combination of the flyers in the door, the signs posted on the road, and the ad we posted with pictures on Craigslist. Traditionally, we've held our Garage Sale's on Saturday & Sunday (read Merchandising a Garage Sale to Sell! and Summer Garage Sale & Tips) But here in AZ, we noticed many have them on Friday's and not Sundays. We actually had more traffic on Friday morning (from moms walking or taking their kids to school) than we did on Saturday. In all, 75% of the people who came to our Garage Sale, bought something -- mainly because of the presentation - they could easily see something they liked, and we were priced fairly.

Thanks for stopping by Kim Rawlins of Sweet Salvage!

Put these tips to the test and you too can have a successful Garage Sale -- The weather this Fall is perfect to have one -- make a few extra dollars for the holidays, clear some clutter, and even meet some of your neighbors!

Thanks for stopping by! 



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