dimare-design-miami-interior-design-halloween-decor-pumpkin

5 Simple Halloween Decorating Ideas

Deborah DiMare

What does Halloween, pumpkins and great grandmothers have in common? My great-grandmother was originally from Russia.  She suffered greatly there and came to America as a young woman.  She lived with my family and I until she died. I was ten at the time. She was a tiny woman with long white hair and spoke English with a heavy Yiddish accent. I adored her and would run home from school to play with her.

My grandma had a funny take on many American customs and traditions.  Halloween was one of them.  She believed that the children who came to the door for candy were begging.  She would go on and on about no matter how poor she was in Russia, she never begged.  We would make every attempt to explain how the children weren’t begging.  However, we could never convince her otherwise.

So, as Halloween approaches I can’t help but picture my grandmother with her arms folded, watching us from afar, as we doled out candy, having a great time on Halloween.  Today I began thinking about her and wondered how Halloween came about.

So, here’s a few fun Halloween facts:

  • Halloween is one of the oldest and the second most popular holiday. Christmas is first.
  • Halloween was a pagan holiday honoring the dead. Halloween or “All Hallows Eve” as it was originally called, Is the night before All Saints Day, which Christians created to convert the pagans.  Halloween dates back over 2000 years and is part of the Celtic culture in Ireland, Britain and Northern Europe.  It’s celebrated on October 31st cause that’s the last day of the Celtic calendar.. Whaddya know!!!
  • The Celts were sure that if one dressed up in costume, they would fool the evil spirits and would be left alone. Apparently the Celts didn’t get out much.
  • So, why the Jack O Lanterns made out of pumpkins you might ask? The name “Jack o Lantern” comes from an Irish folktale about a man named Stingy Jack, and large turnips and potatoes were first used to carve out scary faces. Irish immigrants brought the tradition to America, home of the pumpkin, and it became an integral part of Halloween festivities.

 

And finally, tips on decorating for Halloween:

1. Use pumpkins! They can make great front porch decorations when grouped together. You can even use smaller sized pumpkins to create beautiful table center pieces.

(Leave a comment or message me for link on how to create this center piece)

2. Use Jello and snake toys to create this very cool yet creepy Halloween candy bowl.

(Leave a comment or message me for link on how to create this candy bowl from Martha Stewart)

3. Recycle toiled paper rolls, put glow sticks inside and make glow eyes on the bushes.

(Leave a comment or message me for link on how to make these)

4. Use plants with Halloween themed colored flowers such as yellow, orange and white.

5. Use spider web to decorate around your home.

Share your Halloween decorating ideas with us!  Send them to ddigz@dimaredesign.com  and you can win a Ddigz.com room design for free. It’s worth $479.00. The contest ends September 2nd.  Make sure to write “Halloween Décor Contest” on subject line.

 

-Deborah Rosenberg

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 Our charity of the month is The Gentle Barn. Please support. 

Wild Rock Dog Bowl - Decorating with Pets

Wild Rock Dog Bowl – Decorating with Pets

Deborah DiMare

Decorating your home when you have pets can be challenging. We found this very modern Wild Rock dog bowl on BLTD we know our Receptionist Luca will absolutely love! It works as a great decorating piece for your home as well.

 

Do you like it? Comment back and let us know.

 

-Deborah Rosenberg

If you enjoyed this article, please SHARE!

 Our charity of the month is The Gentle Barn. Please support. 

Cloffice: The Office and the Closet

Cloffice: The Office and the Closet

Deborah DiMare

I was at someone’s home the other day and we walked by a large walk in closet with a desk in it. The owner saw me hesitate and peer in. She said “my son calls this closet with a desk in it his “cloffice.” It’s a closet/office combo. What a clever design idea. She went on to tell me how he feels very cozy in the cloffice. He has no distractions and enjoys the silence and confines of the space. I asked if he had ADHD. She looked at me a bit surprised and said “yes, how did you know?” I answered that a large closet with a desk in it is a great environment for someone with sensory and attention issues. The space allows her son to focus and makes him feel anchored and safe. This boy listened to his sensory needs and addressed them on his own. He is tune with his body. Design with direction. “The Cloffice.” Not to be confused with “The Office.”

 Check out our White meets Office room design… complete with clothes racks and all.

 Do you have a favorite space to read or work in your home? We would love to hear.

-Deborah Rosenberg

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 Our charity of the month is The Gentle Barn. Please support. 

Modern Love and Interior Design - whiteroom

Modern Love and Interior Design

Deborah DiMare

Love and interior design go hand in hand. I recall a conversation I had many years ago with an upholsterer. I was slip covering several sofas for a client all in white. The upholsterer asked if the client was a single woman. She was. The client was recently divorced.

The upholsterer told me she had a theory that single women in particular look at white as a blank canvas, a fresh start. I thought about it and agreed with her. White has become a very popular color in interior design, especially here in Miami, White is totally reflective, awakening openness, growth and creativity. You can’t hide behind it as it amplifies everything in its way. It’s a clean slate.

This bedroom is one of my personal favorites. It combines the old and the new and it’s all shades of white. It has layers of texture that give it pure coziness. Plus, it’s white, which is also one of my favorite colors.

Do you have a favorite white space? We would love to see it.

 -Deborah Rosenberg

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 Our charity of the month is The Gentle Barn. Please support. 

2-Marquis_LivingRoom1_1

Miami Modern Penthouse – Picture of the Day

Deborah DiMare

This downtown condo was designed in true Miami style, Shakira style. The views are beautiful, day and night. Adding strong colors to the interiors would have taken away from the magnificent shades of blue surrounding the space. It’s sexy, got bling and functional. We added interesting details to the spaces such as the large wooden apples on the dining table. The living room sofa has an array of pillows all with different textures to sink into.

The clients are a fun, hip family who enjoy glam. I believe their space fits them well. Our space must meet our needs. That’s key. It must fit you and your lifestyle. If you’re in love with a sofa that is pure silk and you have 6 kids at home, that’s not a good fit and don’t convince yourself otherwise. Function and practically precede everything else. Your day will come for the silk sofa. You might just have to wait awhile. But remember to enjoy the ride til you get there.

Send us pics of your favorite space in your home. We would love to see!

-Deborah Rosenberg

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Our charity of the month is The Gentle Barn. Please support. 

Autism and Pets - pets2

Autism and Pets

Deborah DiMare

I have always had pets. My children have also never known life without a dog. We are a family of animal lovers. Pets are not only warm, fuzzy loving buddies, but they offer developmental benefits to children, especially children in the Spectrum of Autism.

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dWdy6Iy0FK8]

A recent study was performed at four schools in Australia. The students in the Autistic Spectrum were monitored as they were playing with either toys or the classroom guinea pigs. The children were more verbal and social when they were with the guinea pigs than when they were playing with dolls. They were also more approachable while playing with the guinea pigs. Pets are social icebreakers. They force even the most socially unskilled to become social. Our dog, Lucca, has led us to more people who have become life long friends endless times. So, it only stands to reason, that children and adults within the Autistic Spectrum would benefit even more. Having a pet next to them is providing them with the security and confidence to become social, tactile, aware and emotional. It’s a win win all around.

Pets give us a reason to exercise and work on our motor skills. Lucca forces us to go for a run at night, even when we’re not in the mood. For a child or adult in the spectrum, having a pet will encourage touch, stroking, running, rolling, playing with a ball and so on. It’s continual motor skill therapy.

Pets lower our blood pressure and calm us. Any pet owner reading this article can agree that pets can feel our energy.

I was bedridden for a period of time when I was pregnant with my twins. My dog never left my bedside. The Finch Farm quaker parrot for sale online. He wouldn’t take a sip of water unless I was next to him. He laid on top of my huge stomach for hours at a time. I was feeling so sick. But his presence and love nurtured me throughout a physically challenging time.

I personally believe that having a pet for a child or adult in the Autistic Spectrum is like having a 24/7 therapist in your home. A pet is non judgmental, comforting, loving, accepting and understands body language. A pet provides self esteem and instills responsibility, thought, trust and compassion. Pets accept us for who we are. For someone in the Autistic Spectrum, that’s a wonderful thing.

Share your pet story with us. We’d love to hear.

-Deborah Rosenberg

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Our charity of the month is The Gentle Barn. Please support. 

gentlebarn

The Gentle Barn

Deborah DiMare


Each month Ddigz.com donates a portion of your purchase to a different charity or organization. Our mantra is “Interior Design with Direction. We all have special needs, especially when it comes to creating a comforting environment in which to live.”

Much thought is put into which organization to highlight each month. It’s a difficult choice and one we take to heart. This month we have chosen The Gentle Barn, an organization that focuses on caring for animals.

Here is their message:

At The Gentle Barn, we rescue and give sanctuary to animals who no one else wants, including elderly animals. We save senior dogs from being euthanized at the pound, older horses who can’t be ridden anymore, and mature pigs who no one would adopt, to name a few. Caring for these elders is a big job! Many times they have arthritis, aches and pains that need to be addressed. Sometimes they have difficulty getting up or walking. Our job is always to make sure they are comfortable and have a great quality of life.

We believe that animals can provide unconditional love, kindness, and a non-judgmental attitude to all. The animals at The Gentle Barn have so much love to give back, and we believe they are perfect for people with special needs. 

We created a bedroom inspired by The Gentle Barn. Click here to view.

The Ddigz team thanks you for helping us help others.

-Deborah Rosenberg

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stress

6 Ways to Reduce Stress in Your Life

Deborah DiMare

We are a nation of depressed, stressed pill poppers.  Americans spent 11 billion dollars in antidepressants last year. 13 prescriptions were prescribed per man, woman, and child. That’s a 400% rise since the 80’s.

I wrote this post because I received a letter from my daughter’s college.  The letter went on to say that a majority of the students experience stress during exams. The school was selling “stress packages” for the students to buy and hopefully alleviate some of the pressure they’re experiencing.  The packages contained mostly candy, which seemed a bit counterproductive in my opinion.

So, my daughter and I, together, created a stress kit which has a more holistic, healthy approach.  It also costs a lot less than 11 billion dollars. This kit is ideal for anyone at any age.  No one escapes stress during one’s lifetime.  It’s part of living.  However, perhaps instead of reaching for a pill next time, consider other alternatives that won’t defeat the purpose of a good mind, body and soul. As I’m writing this, I’m taking my own advice and using the foot roller. It feels almost as good as resting my feet on my dog’s warm belly, almost…

Check out our Stress Kit here.

Do you have any tricks or tips on how to release stress? We’d love to hear.

-Deborah Rosenberg

***This month we are donating to GRASP/Autism. We thank you for helping us help others!

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shashana

Rosh Hashana Recipes and Tablesetting Design

Deborah DiMare

I’m always looking for new recipes for the Jewish new year, Rosh Hashana.  Check out these interesting recipes I found on a blog called Jewlicious.  Click here!

Once you’ve decided on the menu, it’s all about setting the table. Click here to see the segment I did for NBC 6 on table settings.

Send us your Rosh Hashana table setting pictures, ideas and recipes. We would love to hear from you!

-Deborah Rosenberg

***This month we are donating to GRASP/Autism. We thank you for helping us help others!

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jungleplayroom

Playrooms & Functional Interior Design

Deborah DiMare

Playroom design at a non-celebrity budget. When my daughters were very little, I began looking at schools for them. I was clueless. I visited a very prestigious school and the director explained that the students would be traveling to London to see the opera while in elementary school. I was soooooooo impressed. I called my mom immediately and told her the news. There was dead silence on the other end. After what seemed an eternity, she said “you know honey, kids are just as happy playing Ring around the Rosie.” Moms do know it all. So, with that little story in mind, let’s see how that transfers to your prince or princess’s playroom.

Kids like boxes. They especially like playing with the boxes that their most expensive gifts come in, which can be a real downer as a parent. So, when you’re deciding on what and how much to spend for the playroom, think of my mom’s advice. “The opera is great, but kids like to be kids.” So, you don’t need to buy a puppet theatre. Take a closet, remove the door and hang inexpensive curtains. You now have a stage, a puppet theatre and a nook for reading.

I’m always emphasizing “Design with Direction.” It applies to every area of a home or office, and a playroom is no exception. What is the goal of this space? Once you know, work backwards. Example; your boys are boys. They are very active. The playroom should have objects that they can push, pull and throw without harming anyone or anything. Imagine them throwing a light bean bag at one another. Makes sense that there should be no hanging lights in the space. Lighting should be flush mounted. Shelves should be anchored to the wall etc.. You get the idea. Work backwards.

Here’s a list of items that I believe are staples for any playroom. When deciding how much to spend, unless you have an unlimited celebrity budget, think about mom and the opera.

  • Legos, can’t live without’em. Legos are wonderful for kids in every imaginable way. They’re tactile, colorful, symmetrical, indestructible, and timeless. The only annoyance is that they can be a challenge to clean up. So, that’s where the next item comes in handy.

  • Storage Bins, preferably clear. All tiny toys, such as egos can be stores in them. Have the kids draw a picture of the Lego, spell it out and tape it to the bin so they know that everything has a place. They are in charge of taking things out of the bins and putting them back. That’s the deal.

  • Rocking or Hanging Chair are excellent for calming and the senses.

  • Covered nook such as a small Teepee or a corner with a cover (if you don’t have the spare closet). Nooks provide anchoring and calm. They are wonderful quiet places for your child to read a book, play, and not allow outside interference to break their concentration. It helps promote their imagination.

  • Bean Bags are one of the best inventions of all time. It’s anchoring, close to the floor, cocoons the body and allows for concentration.

  • Chalkboard of any size or shape will do, the bigger the better. When my children were little, nothing kept them busier on a rainy day than the chalkboard. There is something so sensory about the feel of the chalk and the sound of the board. Most of us adults still enjoy writing on a chalkboard.

  • Extra seating for mom, dad, nana or whoever is in charge. Let’s face it, when the kids are ittle, someone needs to keep an eye. Comfy seating can make al the difference for the adult supervisor. I loved watching the kids in their playroom. I had an extra bean bag for myself. I could make phone calls, work and play a board game all at the same time. Multi-tasking moms rock!

  • Mini fridge for the fanzy lazy parent.

We’ve created a playroom board that we believe covers all the necessities. Check it out HERE.

What’s great about your playroom? We’d love to hear.

-Deborah Rosenberg

***This month we are donating to GRASP/Autism. We thank you for helping us help others!

 

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