Joanna Anastasia

Home decor

Winter gallery wall

winter gallery wall

I strongly believe that Christmas decorating doesn’t have to be over the top expensive nor difficult! And I think that one of the easiest ways to add interest to any room, is by simply adding some new and fresh prints to the gallery wall and transforming it in to a winter gallery wall! And I really love it when not only the textures, pillows and accessories change with seasons, but also these visuals, prints and wall decorations. And so for me Christmas decorating means not only dressing up our small Christmas tree, but also updating my gallery wall.

Honestly, visuals in the room are almost as important for me as the furniture themselves, since they can add the vibe and the atmosphere to the space like nothing else really. They can transform a boring and uninteresting wall in to a stunning and inspiring one, and best part, is that it’s so much cheaper to change prints then furniture!

But of course, since I don’t poses unlimited decorating funds, I had to find a way to make these gallery wall changes affordable, and easy.

winter gallery wall

winter gallery wall

So I came up with some simple, and mostly free ways to change your gallery wall and make a winter gallery wall like I did! Including a free to download, calligraphy style printable, ” Baby it’s cold outside” ( do you know this Christmas classic song? It’s one of my favorites!). And there’s even one surprise print in french!

You can read my step by step guide and get the printables by visiting your Hello Holiday Christmas guide! Just click on the “free printable” on the page 10! It’ll take you directly to it!

And if you’re looking for more festive ideas, simple DIY projects and decor inspirations, I’m sure you’ll find them all you need in our guide! Happy festive preparations!

DIY wrapping paper

diy wrapping paper

While I’m not always a DIY busy bee, I usually tend to get more crafty for the holidays! Of course I know that Christmas can be very busy , but for me it’s the excuse to actually slow down and craft a little more with my daughters. Because I really enjoy starting the preparation early, keeping things simple and listening to  Christmas music while doing so!

And when my daughter Lili was two years old, we started making wrapping paper together. It’s not perfect, shiny and detailed like the store-bought one. Honestly it’s a bit messy and rather imperfect. But we have so much fun making it! And now, when Lili is almost five, and Rose is approaching three, I have not one, but two little helpers to help me with my Christmas preparations!

diy wrapping paper

DIY wrapping paper

Also, I really love the Scandinavian Xmas vibes, with its nature inspired simplicity. So every year I make these simple stamps that we use to stamp white paper with. I find the result adorable, and my kids have a blast stamping along!

And I think that making a hand-made wrapping paper teaches kids a lot about the real joy of giving! I think that thanks to our little craft they actually look forward to give their gifts to grandparents, aunts and uncles, and they can’t wait to see the looks on their faces and to tell that it’s not only them who helped wrapping the gifts, but it’s also them who made the wrapping paper itself!

This potato stamp wrapping paper is a great and simple winter activity for kids, while the effect is both practical and festive! And now you can wrap all your gifts without spending extra money on wrapping paper!

You can find the full tutorial here, in our Hello Holiday Guide, among other simple festive DIY ideas!

Happy wrapping!

<em>Photos of me in this post where captured by <a href=”; target=”_blank” rel=”nofollow”>Donna Griffith</a>.</em>

How to make a small space feel bigger

five tips to help you make any space feel and look bigger! Simple tips and tricks. 5 ways to make a small room feel bigger!

We live in a rather small house. As soon as you get in, there’s a small entry way and the kids playroom is just on the right, and the living room on the left. And our entry way space, aside of being boring, used to be such a mess. But lately, I was craving change, and while looking at our sad entry way I was asking myself how to make a small space feel bigger. And more organized! And more personalized. So after some searching, I got to work, and today I’m sharing the result!

First let’s start with the very sad before photo. As you see, the space is really small.
I bought this table when I was pregnant with Rose, over three years ago, but I never really did nothing more there. The light switch above the table was annoying me, and so I couldn’t really figure this corner out.


But this past month I had a strike of inspiration, I realized I was longing for color and texture, and here’s the result:

How to make a small space feel bigger

How to make a small space feel bigger

How to make a small space feel bigger

And I even changed the wall in my girls play room.. Since it’s one of the first things you see when you come in!

So here is my recipe for making any space feeling bigger, and a little secret hack:

1. Add pattern.

Pattern adds depth to any space, so even if it’s a small space, it can greatly benefit from a bit of pattern.

Oh, you don’t wan’t to deal with wallpaper? Nor do I! That’s why I didn’t use wallpaper but material called pixerstick! I got this peel-and stick gorgeous pattern from Pixers. One for my entry way and one (the pastel cloud wall) for my girls play room. The best part? It was already cut to fit my space, and it took me and my hubby not more then 2 hours to install it all ( yes, the big wall in girls playroom and all of the entry way).

And you wan’t to know what I love about it the most? It doesn’t mark walls, is super easy to just un-peel and take off , and there are literally hundreds of choices to pick from! Now that’s what I call a life hack!

How to make a small space feel bigger

2. Use horizontal space

I would always put my purse, and keys on a little table, but when my hubby would add his pocket change, and my girls would add their hats, and I’d add some mail on top of it.. Well then there was a huge pile of mess. That’s why I added hooks! Now I’ll have a designated space for my purse and my scarf!

You could even add a hook for every family member and use that horizontal space to hang hats, keys or scarfs!

How to make a small space feel bigger

3. Add mirrors.

Mirrors really do make the space feel bigger! But look out: they’ll make your space look and feel bigger only if they reflect light!

Also, try playing with shapes! Round mirrors are on trend now and for a reason: they can add that vintage and playful look, or a sophisticated and elegant , all depending from the material they’re made of. So if you wan’t to go for the first one, choose brass or bamboo, and if you prefer the second, go for metallic or wood.

How to make a small space feel bigger

4. Add a gallery wall.

Even a small wall will look better with a gallery wall, and the higher you’ll hang your frames, the higher the eye will travel, giving the illusion of a bigger space!

Try mixing frames of different sizes and colors for an eclectic look, or go with one color but different sizes for a more classical finish. And if you’re going for a modern vibe like I did, hang a in-pair number of objects on the wall.

You don’t need to hang expensive art nigher: I used the same print I had, and I draw the abstract art with Pastel crayons.

How to make a small space feel bigger

5. Unify the space.

Every space feels better if the elements and colors repeat themselves.

So while painting the abstract art I tried to add in some blue hues to match the Pixers “wallpaper” sticker. And since the table I already had has a little rustic feel in to it, I decided to add two hand lettered wood boards, in order to add in more of that modern rustic feel. My hubby have cut old wood for me, and using my kids Ikea crafting paint I wrote these two quotes that I love!.

So now, I feel like not only my entry way got bigger, but also that I got a new personalized room altogether! And I hope that these tips will help you with changing things a bit in your home!

Disclosure: This post was brought to you by Pixers, all opinions remain my own.

Christmas living room makover

Simple ideas for Christmas living room decoration

As much as I love Christmas – I’m the first one to sing Christmas songs, and I don’t even get a tiny bit annoyed with festive decor just after Halloween – I also believe that Christmas is more than just a big Christmas tree and gift shopping. I believe that it’s simply about being close with the ones you love, making your own traditions and celebrating the season.

So for me, decorating for Christmas, is simply about adding comfort. It’s about a comfy chair for my guests, it’s about a sofa big enough for me, my hubby, our daughters, my cats and my daughters dolls and toys. It’s about feeling cozy and warm.

This year I was all about the white and red color scheme, simple Christmas tree and layering textures. I guess I’m equally inspired by Scandinavian simplicity as French elegance!

And Christmas is my favorite time, and as a homebody that I am, my home is my favorite gathering place! So making the room as inviting, cozy and comfortable as possible, is all that I wished for.

Simple ideas for Christmas living room decorating

Simple Christmas living room decorating ideas

That’s why while decorating for Christmas with the help of Leon’s furniture I opted for two small Xmas trees rather then one big. And since our space is rather small all I wanted for it, is t make it as cozy as possible.

And now, our living room is the real epicenter of our Christmas traditions. This is where we check on our DIY advent calendar in the morning. This is where we talk on Skype with our extended family that is back in Europe. This is where we entertain friends and family, where we unwrap gifts and sip hot chocolate.

You can see more of my Christmas Living room , along other great Christmas decorating and hosting ideas, in our Hello Holiday Guide here!

<em>First 2 photos in this post where captured by <a href=”; target=”_blank” rel=”nofollow”>Donna Griffith</a>.</em>

Bedroom makeover

bedroom makover

Bedroom. One of the most important pieces at home! Back in my twenties, I used to study in my bed as a student, and have always had a huge mess of laundry there. Then, as a new mom, my bedroom was buried underneath the pile of baby clothes, diapers and more laundry. Oh, and pacifiers and rubber toys too. So investing in the bedroom of my dreams really had to wait.

Up until recently, when one day I finally realized that it’s been awhile since I had a baby to change and feed in the middle of the night. And that actually, from time to time I do find a minute to read in bed. The only problem was that, my old headboard was a little bit of a DIY project, and didn’t hold that well, so leaning comfortably on it was impossible. Our mattress was getting uncomfortable, and our night stands where cute but very unpractical little tables, too small to store anything. It was time for a change!

And so with a help of Leon’s furniture I finally have the bedroom of my dreams! It’s still small, and it’s simple, but I just love how it turned out!

Here is how it looked before and how it looks now:

the before

bright, calm and airy bedroom

airy calm and bright bedroom

So now, this is what I call my mom oasis. There’s a place for books by the bed, and some extra storage for all the things. There’s a comfortable and inviting bed, with a purring cat waiting for me to join.

And if you’d like to see more of my bedroom makeover, read more about this bed and it’s amazing storing capabilities, and see why I love my new mattress, all that along some amazing holiday inspiration, click over to the Hello Holiday Guide ! It’s our 90 pages online lookbook with gorgeous makeovers, holiday inspiration, and real home stories! I’m sure you’ll love it as much as I do!

<em>Photos 3 and 4  in this post where captured by <a href=”; target=”_blank” rel=”nofollow”>Donna Griffith</a>.</em>

Hello Holiday

Hello Holidays guide

Never in my dreams would I have though that decorating would become a part of my job, nor that I would have imagine being a blogger in a first place! But I’m beyond happy to do both, and today I’m so exited to reveal a big project I’ve been working on since summer, in collaboration with five other amazing bloggers and Leon’s furniture team! Today is the day we’re finally launching the Hello Holiday Guide For Your Happy Holiday Home! It’s a book full of beautiful holiday decor inspiration, Christmas life hacks, and easy, doable and festive DIY ideas ! Made by real mom-bloggers like me, in their real homes, with kids, pets and imperfections!

Hello Holiday

You can get a printed version with the December issue of Canada’s Style st Home magazine too, though for the full 90 pages of amazing content, go on-line here!

And I have prepared 8 different stories, with simple Christmas DIY ideas, recipes and of course, room makeovers! I’ll be sharing all that Christmas goodies on my blog little by little too!

Here are a couple of sneak peaks of what I’ve been working on and of what you can see more of in the Lookbook:

Hello Holiday

Piernik, the ginger bread cake, traditional Polish cake for Christmas

DIY advent calendar with a free printable

Also, if you don’t know them already, here are the five amazing Canadian bloggers that I had a chance to work with on this project:

Bethany from This Little Estate

Julie from Elliven Studio

Lucy from Craftberry Bush

Kassandra from Little DeKonings

Thalita from The Learner Observer

So grab yourself a nice cup of hot chocolate, and come get inspired for this holiday season! I’m sure you’ll love what we have prepared!

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