SHOW+TELL: Spray Paint a Briar Rug

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There once was a girl named Alison who had an awkward entry space and no good options. She went searching for a rug to protect what was left of her ugly carpet. She went to store after store with no luck, instead bringing home a rug that was so bland it made her cry.

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No really. I could find NOTHING that I liked. Everything was either too small, too bold, to “contemporary”, or too “tempting for a cat to destroy.” I decided that bland was better than something that was REALLY not me, and I grabbed a can of spray paint in case I got inspired.

This month’s theme was a great chance to embrace my inner subtly-secret-goth-girly-girl and decorate the rug with a few briars (á la Sleeping Beauty, or Briar Rose.)

 

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I used Con-Tact paper to make a mask for the rug. I cut a bunch of free-hand curved pieces, and laid them across each side of the rug in a random arrangement. When each piece was in a location I liked, I stepped on it to adhere it to the rug firmly ( are an awesome tool, too!) Once I had the stems all lined up, I began to decorate each with triangles of thorns.

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When I was happy with everything, I sprayed a thin layer of white all-purpose spray paint across the rug, paying special attention to the edges of the mask. Then I tortured myself by leaving the whole thing to dry a few hours before removing the mask and seeing what it was going to look at.

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After those couple of hours, I gently peeled the mask material off of the rug…

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and had the big reveal.

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After airing the rug out overnight, I put it in place in my entry space.

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No more bland rug!

 

Here’s a word of warning: This was so fun and transformative that I want to spray paint everything in the house now.

I’ve got my eye on you, dining rug… what do you think about circles?

RECIPE: Pansy Shortbread Cookies

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Do you believe in magic? Ever since I was a little girl, I’ve loved reading stories of the fairy folk living in an enchanted forest, playing with the animals, and sipping tea from rosebud tea cups. If I were ever invited to join them, I’d bring these Pansy Shortbread Cookies to share.

Inspired by the wonders of nature and the magic that can be found within it, I decided to make a batch of cookies fit for fairyland. This recipe is simple to make and so pretty! Make it your own (or please the fairies in your own backyard) by changing up the ingredients to suite your favorite flavors. I chose to make a lavender lemon shortbread cookie using lavender-infused sugar and dried lavender harvested from my garden. You could also try these Lemon Thyme Shortbread Cookies, these Earl Grey Shortbread Cookies or these Cardamom Orange Zest Shortbread Cookies.

flower-cookies-2Some Tips On Choosing Edible Flowers:

I used a few varieties of pansies that I had growing in my garden but you can experiment with other edible flowers too. Some things to keep in mind…

  • Choose flowers that will fit the shape of the cookie.
  • Only use edible flowers that you can identify correctly
  • Only use edible flowers that are grown organically (pesticide-free).
  • Edible flower suggestions: Chamomile, Johnny-Jump-Ups, Borage, Lavender, Marigolds, Pansies, Rose Petals, Violas, Violets.

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Pansy Shortbread Cookies
 
Author:
Recipe type: Dessert
Serves: 36 Cookies
Ingredients
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup lavender infused sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons dried lavender
  • Zest of one lemon
  • Fresh, organic pansies
  • 1 egg white, beaten
  • Fine sugar (for finishing)
Instructions
  1. Cream the butter with an electric mixer until fluffy. Stir in the flour, sugar and salt; beat on low speed for 1 minute. Crush the dried lavender using a mortar and pestle. Then add the vanilla, lavender and lemon zest to the mixer, beating until just incorporated.
  2. Let the dough chill in the refrigerator for approx. 1 hour. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Grease baking sheet and set aside.
  3. On a floured surface, roll out the dough to ¼" thickness. Cut out with round or scalloped cookie cutters and place 1" apart onto the prepared baking sheet. Bake for 14-18 minutes, until the cookies begin to turn light golden around the edges and on the bottom. Remove from oven and transfer to wire racks to cool.
  4. Once the cookies are all baked and cooled its time to decorate with flowers! Use a pastry brush to brush a cookie with egg white and place a pansy on top. Then brush the pansy all over with egg white and sprinkle with fine sugar.
  5. Repeat with remaining cookies and return them to the baking sheet. Bake in the oven for another 5 minutes, then transfer to the wire racks to cool.

 
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Serve these at your next tea party or package them up as favors at your next fairytale gathering! And don’t forget to leave a few out in your garden for the fairies to enjoy 🙂
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