6 DIY Decorations for the Holiday Season

December is a very merry and bright month. But what makes it even more special is the décor that towns, businesses, and homeowners put up. Snowmen, Christmas trees, wreaths, and twinkle lights truly give us that holiday feeling. To get this feeling in your own home, why not try a few DIY projects? They’re easy, inexpensive, and most of all, festive!

Pine Cone Christmas Trees

Using simple terracotta pots, a few pine cones, and some paint, you can create an original Christmas tree look. Use these as table centerpieces, mantle decoration, or on shelves to add a little extra holiday magic to your home.  

Wrapping the Front Door

Give your front door a little personality with this DIY décor idea. Cut out construction paper into shapes for the eyes, mouth, nose, and button down coat. Add in some holiday ribbon, garland and Christmas lights to truly bring your door to life!  

Candles with Nature

If you’re looking for a classier holiday look while staying in budget, try this idea out. Tie holiday green leaves with a simple white ribbon around different sized candles. These are perfect for a dinner with friends or simply adding elegant cheer to your home.  

Paper Holiday Lights

This is a perfect family craft that the kids will love. All this craft requires is some twine and different colored construction paper. Use whatever colors most appeal to you and cut out light shapes. Tie them all together on a line of twine and you now have the cutest DIY lights that can go anywhere.  

Popsicle Christmas Trees

Here’s another kid-friendly DIY idea that will make a holiday keepsake you can use for years to come. Create your own unique popsicle Christmas tree ornaments with different bling and accessories. They can be hung on a tree, on the walls, or on twinkle lights for some extra pizzazz.  

Mantle Garland

Red and white garland is a timeless piece of holiday décor. Instead of buying pre-made garland at the store, try and make it yourself! Use construction paper, wire, and mini close-pins to spell out your own holiday message.   What do you think of our DIY decoration ideas? Tweet us your thoughts at @HamletHomesUtah!

Here’s Why Solar Powered Homes are the Next Big Thing

It’s clear that our world is making a gradual shift to renewable energy sources. Elon Musk, CEO of SpaceX and Tesla Motors, just announced his solar roofing shingles last week, and it’s re-opened the conversation around clean energy. His shingles are not only efficient and energy-saving, but they’re stylish too. Solar-powered roofs are the next big thing, and Hamlet Homes is at the forefront of this movement. With all of Hamlet Homes’ new properties being wired for solar power, it’s easier than ever to ditch old methods of power and save precious energy.

Save thousands of dollars

Over the course of your solar panels’ life, you could be saving upwards of $20,000. The cost of installing the panels is often covered within the first few years of installation, and the rest of those savings go straight to you. With Hamlet Homes’ newest properties being pre-wired for solar readiness, the installation cost is significantly reduced. Instead of hiring someone to re-wire your entire home to be compatible with this power, why not think about living somewhere that’s already one step ahead?

Create reliable energy

Blackouts and power outages could be a distant memory if you choose to rely on solar-powered energy. The sun will always rise and set on a schedule, so you know your energy source isn’t going to suddenly give out on you.

Promote a healthier world

Renewable energy sources are gaining so much traction because of the state that our planet is in. Making the shift to this type of energy in your home translates to making a difference in our world. According to the EPA, an average home emits about 20 metric tons of carbon pollution every year. Solar-powered homes reduce their carbon footprint by three to four tons every year. That’s a decent amount that, multiplied by 20 years, adds up to somewhere around 80 tons of carbon saved. Not too bad! If you’re looking for more information on Hamlet Homes’ solar-powered homes, contact us today. solar panels

Our Favorite DIY Halloween Decorations

We’re only a few weeks away from Halloween, and you’re probably already seeing lots of Halloween decorations go up around the Salt Lake City neighborhoods. If you’re looking for a way to decorate using some crafty skills and just a couple of dollars, this is the blog for you. Here are our favorite DIY Halloween decoration ideas to get you ready for the spooky holiday.

Spider webs in the yard

This easy to make Halloween craft is perfect for adding a little spookiness to your yard. Using a balloon, some plastic spiders, and hot glue, you can create this fun and scary look.  

Black cats

These black cats are not quite what they seem. Select different sized pumpkins and paint them black with a shiny finish. Carve classic cat eyes and add ears and tails to finish the look. Once you light up the eyes, passerby will definitely stop and look twice at your front porch.  

Floating witch hats

Your front porch will look positively wicked with these floating witch hats. Use simple fishing line to hang them, and attach battery operated candles inside to illuminate.  

Eyes in the bushes

Give trick or treaters a little extra scare with these eyes in the bushes craft. Simply cut out various eye shapes from paper towel or toilet paper cardboard, and place glow sticks inside to illuminate. Arrange them strategically in shrubbery, bushes, and trees to give Halloween goers that eerie feeling that someone is watching them.  

Front door with attitude

Make your front door truly expressive with this fun DIY project. Gather up construction paper, streamers, and paper plates of all different colors and go wild with your idea. This is a perfect project to include kids on because it’s easy, fun, and there’s no wrong way to make it!  

Pumpkin bowl

If you’re hosting a Halloween party this year, create a one-of-a-kind bowl to serve drinks out of. Just cut a pumpkin in half, take out all of the seeds and goo, and fill with ice. You’re ready to relieve your guests’ thirst and they’ll be pretty impressed with your creativity too.   Do you have any other Halloween decorating ideas? Tell us about it on Twitter!

5 Headboard Ideas to Update Your Bedroom Design

All rooms need a focal point that is aesthetically pleasing and also fits with the design around it. For bedrooms, the headboard is often this focal point. Headboards provide a chance to create a stylish centerpiece that also has a function. From color and texture to design and materials used, there are a variety of headboard ideas that can give a room an extra dose of style. Check out these ideas to update your bedroom look.

The classic dimpled look

This classic design is beautiful and timeless. It can be adapted to a variety of color pallets and can be easily integrated into most existing bedroom designs. There are even some great DIY ideas out there so you can create this headboard look using your own crafty skills.  

Full contemporary

In the opposite direction, this full on contemporary look provides clean cool lines for a bedroom design. This wall-to-wall effect is the visual centerpiece of the room, and with neutral colors, it doesn’t overwhelm the room.  

Simple and elegant

The simplicity of this headboard design idea allows for more accessorizing and details around it. This cloth headboard stays low on the wall and provides a great simple backdrop for throw pillows and hanging art above.  

Wooden and chic

A wooden headboard is the ultimate in chic home décor. White washed wood gives this room a country kind of feel, but you can use wood painted any color to give the effect you desire. This design looks best between two windows, because it offers balance and symmetry in the room.  

Unique colors

Boldness is not just reserved for your dining or living room areas. Take advantage of bold colors and design pieces to make a statement in your bedroom design. This example uses dyed leather as the headboard accessory, and pairs it with other mixed and matched pieces.   For more great design ideas and inspiration, visit our website for weekly blog updates!

Understanding Your New Home Warranty

Buying a new home is an exciting experience. Not only do you get to choose the perfect floorplan, you also get to determine exactly what the interior will look like. You’ll pick out the perfect carpet, the ideal flooring, and just the right fixtures to finish it off. Another advantage of moving into a brand new home is the new home warranty. These warranties are designed to ensure that you receive a quality home. It also gives homeowners piece of mind that if something goes wrong after it’s built, there’ll be an easy fix. Here are some key components of a new home warranty.

Home Construction

Most builders offer a multi-year structural warranty to ensure the quality of construction on the home. These policies usually include one or two years of coverage for workmanship (detailed later). It also includes about 10 years of coverage for structural issue problems. This is not limited to problems with load-bearing elements, foundation, and other things for which the safety and security of the home could be compromised.


If your homebuilder includes appliances in the sale of the home, those are often included under the home warranty. The most common are the HVAC system and kitchen appliances. Since most appliances have their own warranties from manufacturers, it’s important to note whether the builders include these things or if they are simply what’s offered from the manufacturer.


Your homebuilder also includes coverage for workmanship too. A warranty covers components like the roofing, walls, doors and trim, flooring, and countertops. In case there’s a problem with the plumbing or electrical work, a home warranty covers these things for a short time after the home is built.

How to Redeem Home Warranty

As you read through your homeowner’s warranty, make a note of what is covered and how you are supposed to make a claim. Builders require that you send requests through a specific process. This often entails contacting manufacturers to find out about any warranty available prior to using the builder’s warranty. Understanding these steps ensures that you get repairs done in a timely manner if you ever need them. Before you buy a new home, see what kind of warranty your homebuilder offers, and what provisions are included in it.

Spruce Up Your Entryway with These 4 Ideas

Does your entryway need a little re-imagining? It’s all too easy to abandon your plans of keeping your front entry clean, organized, and decorated. After all, once we enter our homes, we usually just want to relax and unwind. Use these 4 ideas to revitalize your entryway and bring new life to the entrance of your home.

Hooks, mirrors, and tables

Make a smaller entryway look more spacious and welcoming by strategically placing a few handpicked items. An end table with drawers, a mirror, and a few hooks will add organization and style to your home. It also creates clean lines that are visually pleasing to all who enter. Make it even more unique by creating your own key rack, like the example below.    

Personalize it

Show off what you love most by adding personal touches. Whether it’s family photos, favorite quotes, or art from your favorite designer, the entry is the perfect place to display these items. Your guests will feel welcome and at home once they set foot through your door.  

Entryway bench

Benches are great for adding visual interest, providing seating, or creating additional storage space. There’s a bench for every trend and style, so finding one for your own home will be quick work. Benches with cubbies or drawers underneath are perfect for storing shoes and bags, and others are just a great place for guests to take a brief rest once they come inside.  

Make a statement

Go all out and make a bold statement with your entryway. It’s your home after all! Place your family initials above the door and display unique pieces of art and sculptures where you see fit. There’s no limit to the creativity you can display in your entryway, so have fun with it and make it your own!  

Home Decorating Basics

When moving into a new house or townhome, you’re presented with a whole world of opportunity. New homeowners are usually eager to begin decorating and filling their living space with all their favorite personal items. However, in their eagerness to get started, homeowners can sometimes make design choices that they later regret. Here are some tips to help you make successful and long-lasting home decorating choices.

Decorating Colors and Patterns

Color is perhaps the most important decision of any home decorating project. If you’re looking to buy all new furniture for your home, your color choices are virtually endless. But even when moving into a brand new home, most of us still move the majority of our old furnishings with us. In this case, see if there is a color that predominates the items you already have. Many people cultivate a particular theme for years and never realize it! interior design color palletes If you have the start of a theme, you can acquire new items in accordance with that trend.  You can integrate these new items so they easily coordinate with just about any color palette. Here are a few examples of home décor items that may go along with a color scheme or theme you already have in mind.
  • Metallic silver, gold, or brass-tone objects
  • Storage containers in neutral colors like white, off-white, beige, and grey
  • Wicker or willow baskets
  • Handmade pottery and ceramic goods
  • Light- or dark-colored wooden items
  • Rag rugs or other area rugs with many colors

Vintage, Retro, and Antique

Throwback styling choices are the latest trends to sweep interior design magazines. Even the most modern living space can benefit from a little touch of vintage style. Antique pots, cups and dishes, vintage bath towels, and other retro accessories can bring some serious style points to any part of your home. And don’t be afraid to mix and match. You’d be amazed at what you can integrate with your current decorating choices. vintage accessories Hamlet Homes creates elegant living solutions for families of all sizes. Contact an associate today to learn more about what makes our communities so special.

September Events in Salt Lake City

Just because the kids are back in school doesn’t mean you can’t still take them to some amazing events. Salt Lake City has a variety of great happenings for all ages and interests this month. This fall, you can go to a Utes game, get your yoga on, visit local street fairs, stroll local galleries, and so much more! Here’s the details on a few of Salt Lake City’s upcoming events.

University of Utah Ute’s Football Game

Utah’s Pac-12 team puts on quite a show at Rice-Eccles Stadium in Salt Lake City. It’s a great event for families and sports fans alike. Join the crowd in chants, cheers, and yips as the Utes take on Southern Utah University, BYU, San Jose State, and other great teams. View the full schedule and buy your tickets here. utah utes football game in salt lake city

Downtown Yoga Festival

If you’re looking for a healthy and unique event to partake in, check out the Downtown Yoga Festival. This event features yoga, music, healthy eating choices, and all kinds of yoga workshops for kids and adults. It’s a great way to get centered and enjoy downtown Salt Lake City. And, every registration includes a free ticket to the Leonardo Museum (so it’s really two activities in one!). The festival takes place September 3rd-5th.
downtown salt lake city
Photo Credit: Flickr User Garret

The Avenues Street Fair

Visit the Avenues Street Fair on September 10th between I and N streets in the Salt Lake Avenues. You’ll see five blocks full of live music, local talent, artists, vendors, and delicious local food. Admission is free, so why not take a walk through this delightful street fair?
farmers market fruits
Photo Credit: Flickr User John Tornow

Salt Lake Gallery Stroll

Did you know there’s a monthly gallery stroll in Salt Lake City? Every third Friday of each month features a free gallery stroll across Salt Lake. Let the culture of art and the ambiance of the city surround you during this fun and unique event.
art gallery stroll
Photo Credit: Flickr User Herry Lawford

Utah State Fair Event

From September 8th-18th, the Utah State Fair Park will be hosting the annual Utah State Fair. There’s entertainment for everyone, including Blues Traveler performing on the grandstand stage, and the Canine Stars performing stunts daily throughout the fairgrounds. Discount tickets are available now at Smith’s! ferris wheel at the fair Are there any events you’re looking forward to attending this month? Tell us about it on Twitter or Facebook!

6 DIY Home Ideas Perfect for Fall

DIY HomeOur 6 DIY Home Ideas are perfect since Fall is in the air. Salt Lake City’s trees are starting to turn brilliant yellow, deep orange, and fiery red. With the weather cooling as well, the autumn season definitely is arriving. If you want to get into the fall spirit, take a look through our 6 DIY home ideas. They’re all cost-effective, crafty, and guaranteed to bring the coziness of autumn into your home.

Fall leaves

When the maple trees in your area start to turn, collect a few of the most vibrant leaves. Place them gently into a hurricane glass, or pair them with colored candles. Put them all together in a nice bowl or on a decorative platter. And there you have a colorful and inexpensive fall centerpiece.  

DIY Home Hanging flowers

You don’t need to buy fresh flowers for this DIY Home project. Head to your local craft or dollar store and buy your favorite plastic flowers. Put them together in a ball using florist foam. Then simply hang them over a window using twine or string. This project brings the rustic look of fall into your home with just a few dollars.  

Chalk board messages

Do you have a chalk board at home that you use to communicate with the family, or for grocery and to-do lists? Spice it up with an autumnal message, and add a few sprigs of maple leaves, twine, or any other fall related décor. You can swap out the message and the seasonal accessories for every holiday, too.  

Fall scents

To really bring the October season into your home, tantalize the senses. Brew up a batch of apple cinnamon and citrus aromas on your stove top, and let the pleasant fall smells waft about your house.  

Simple mini pumpkins

If simplicity is your game, this is the perfect DIY Home fall craft. Buy a bundle of mini white pumpkins (or any color that you love). Arrange them neatly in a wooden basket and place on any table in the house. It’s simple, beautiful, and easy to put together in minutes.  

Floating candles

For the perfect evening centerpiece this fall, try this floating candle project. Fill 3 or more different sized candle glasses with water, and arrange twigs from outside into the water. Place the floating candle in and light the flame. For an added glow, place the candles among some fall leaves, and intertwine some twinkle lights within them. This project adds soft yellow light with touches of autumn, great for a family meal or evening dinner party.  

Reasons to Build Your Home Instead of Buying an Existing One

If you’ve scoured homes on the market and have experienced nothing but disappointment, you and your hopes of home-ownership may be better off constructing your next residence rather than buying an existing one. While it’s understandable for you to be hesitant about this idea, know that there are a number of advantages to constructing your own home from scratch.

Live in a Home Built Without Compromise

Oftentimes, homeowners have to settle for a few things when it comes to the features and aspects of the home they want. Whether it’s square footage, the number of rooms, or the age of the plumbing system, there may be some requirements you have to cross off your list. By building your home, you get more of the things you want out of your property. Even if you have to make sacrifices, you can create your home in a way that you can easily include add-ons in the future.

Energy Efficiency

Having an energy-efficient home is more important than ever and with good reason. When you build your home, you can include the latest energy-efficient appliances and residential systems, such as electrical and plumbing. One of the great things about focusing on energy efficiency in your new home design is that you can have a bigger property that has the energy bill of a much smaller home.

Overall Building Affordability

Before you get the impression that it’s more expensive to build a new home than it is to buy an existing home, know that this isn’t always the case. While an existing property may be well within your price range, its location may keep it out of your financial reach. You also have to consider the fact that making renovations to an older home can cost more than the price of building a new home. Just like needing a budget when it comes to remodeling a home, the same is true of building a brand new home. Start exploring your options for creating the home of your dreams. Building that dream into a reality could be easier and less expensive than you think. build your new home


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