pattern play: northwestern girls and the dogs who love it

there is a damp chill to the northwestern air that drives people indoors and makes thoughts of warm fires, cozy lodges, and friends gathered round for a game of cards so enticing. this contrast between the gray, foggy days and the warmth of diving deep under the covers for a sound sleep (day or night!) is what inspired our northwestern girls pattern. like the comfort of a well-loved plaid shirt, this duvet will always provides a welcome respite for your pup against the elements outside.

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you can find more pictures of these beautiful pups on their instagram accounts, in order from left to right: @heytheregeorgiegirl_, @jengeambazi, @mollymayhem, @my_dog_likes, @shutupayouface and @tamismith75. a big thanks to each of them for being molly mutt fans!

great eco-friendly ideas for holiday waste

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as we conclude the holidays, you may be looking around your home wondering what you’re going to do with all of that torn up wrapping paper, the thoughtful holiday cards, the leftover food in the fridge… and where are you going to take your tree??

the answer definitely is not: just throw it in the trash.

according to the environmental protection agency, between thanksgiving and new year’s day, americans contribute an additional 1 million tons of waste a week to our landfills. it sounds like a lot, because it is. by upcycling (and recycling) as many of these materials as you can, you can help reduce that number, plus have something cute and ‘new’ to show off in your home! we have a few ideas you can try at home, and some things to consider for the the holiday season next year.

wrapping paper

if you’re needing to send out “thank you” notes for all of the gifts you received this year, don’t buy an envelope, create one! pick out the prettiest patterned wrapping paper and follow these steps to create your own individualized form of stationary.

need to pack away your christmas tree ornaments or other decorations? simple! use that wrapping paper to keep those items safe while in storage. you can also apply this to any type of storage, especially if you’re maybe moving anytime soon.

if you’re in party mode bringing in the new year and need some extra confetti for you and your friends to throw at midnight, look no further than the pile of wrapping paper you have at home. just run it through a paper shredder! sure, you may make a bit of a mess, but it’ll definitely be festive!

boxes, boxes and more boxes

are you an Amazon addict like we are? if so, you can take every one of those boxes, pack them full of clothes, toys and other household items you no longer want, and Amazon will ship them to Goodwill using givebackbox.com. donations go directly to your nearest participating Goodwill organization using a free shipping label and the empty Amazon (or other) box.

holiday cards

there are a few fun things you can do with your favorite holiday cards this year, giving you the chance to continue spreading the joy of them.

you can prepare for the holiday season next year by creating gift card tags using your old greeting card. simply cut the back off and punch a hole in the top so you can string a ribbon through. you can get more creative by cutting fun shapes, plus, this is a great activity for your kids to do!

you can also take those same backs of the cards to instead create your own postcards to send out. Just write your message on the back and address it to the loved one you want to spread some holiday cheer to (don’t forget the stamp!)

another option you have is to donate them. that’s right, you can donate your old holiday cards! st. jude’s ranch accepts them and repurposes them as part of their recycled card program. they then resell them and help fund their programs, helping families in need.

leftovers in the fridge

Your dogs will love this one. Instead of throwing out all of the leftovers from your holiday celebration, treat your pup to a tasty holiday treat! There are tons of recipes you can try, depending on what you have in your fridge; we found some awesome recipes you can take inspiration from right here.

what to do with your tree

it’s not as simple as just throwing it in the dumpster, which is something you shouldn’t do anyway. you can either recycle your tree or get a little creative with it while it’s still alive.

if you’re already looking forward to spring, you can chip up the trunk and branches to create mulch for your garden. You can still do this for your trees and shrubs as a temporary winter mulch.

you can create decorations or other items around your home using the tree as well. cut off branches to create a new wreath, or cut and treat discs from the tree trunk to make your own coasters.

if you prefer to dispose of it completely, be sure to check with your local recycling center for free drop-off locations. these places will often chip and shred your tree for use as mulch or as part of soil erosion programs. you can also arrange for pick up in front of your home if you don’t have the time to take it yourself.

there are countless ways to reduce the waste around the holiday season. get creative with it, do a little research and get even more inspiration on how you can become a little more eco-friendly as you celebrate the holidays every year!

4 ways to ready your dog for a long winter’s nap

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as temperatures plummet it’s important to know how to help your dog stay cozy for nap times and night times. winter can make it difficult for your pup to say warm, dry and clean – but follow these tips to make sure she has the perfect resting place for a long winter’s nap all season long.

1//  keep her clean

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snow, sludge and mud are mainstays of winter and can wreak havoc on your dog’s coat. keeping her fur free of mats, snow balls and grime will help her stay warmer and healthier throughout the season. it also means her bed stays clean and dry, providing a more comfortable place to rest. she doesn’t want to sleep on a dirty, stinky bed…and you don’t want one of those in your house anyway!

2// keep her warm

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there’s nothing worse than laying down for a well-earned nap when it has to happen in a cold, drafty corner of the room. even the best insulated doors and windows can have cold air around them. do your pup a favor and move her bed to a warmer part of the room. if she’s a really good dog, you could even put her bed near the fireplace or a warm vent. just make sure they are dog-proofed so she can’t burn herself – she wants to be toasty, not toasted.

3// keep her cozy

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make sure your dog has a well-stuffed bed for the winter months. extra stuffing will keep her further off the cold floor, which will keep her warmer and help keep the stiffness out of aging joints. if truth be told, the best material to stuff with for winter is wool – wool is naturally warming, dirt resistant, water repellant and self cleaning. can you think of a better dog bed for winter?

4// keep her close

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when the days are short and the nights are cold sleeping with your pup can be a really great way for you both to stay warm. your dog’s body temperature is 3 to 4 degrees higher than yours, making her a natural-born heater. she will also provide comfort, ease anxiety and cause the release of oxytocin, the cuddle hormone! sleeping with you will also make her very happy. and isn’t that what life is all about anyway?

our favorite pet-friendly, doggie decor ideas!

roughly 45% of homes in the u.s. have a dog. that’s an incredible number since it adds up to about 75 million dogs that have taken up residence in our homes and our hearts. and we figure of those dog-owning homes, many of them are like us – wanting to seamlessly integrate their dogs’ beds, bowls, baths and more into the stylish decor we have painstakingly chosen. we love our dogs and want them to have every creature comfort, but we don’t want our home to look like a dog house. so we have scoured the world wide web for the best ideas on how to decorate a home so human and hound can live together in harmony.

Lauren & Wolf Interior Design

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in their article, 11 ways to incorporate pet spaces at home, they combine beautiful photography with realistic recommendations on how to best live in a lovely home with your pup. as they say, “Pet stuff isn’t always pretty, but adding their things to your space doesn’t have to result in an interior eyesore.” Check it out for ways to strategically design your home to accommodate both you and your furry friend.

The Creativity Exchange

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from custom built-ins to diy projects, their article creative ways to incorporate pet items into your home decor, doesn’t skimp on the ideas. with our love of all things upcycled, we really liked their ideas on using children’s chairs for elevated food and water bowls, and a bright red dresser repurposed as a pet center.

PeoplePets

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we found some great advice and ideas on how to live harmoniously with our dog’s belongings in PeoplePet’s article, Tips on How to Make Your Home Pet-Friendly and Post from HGTV’s Nicole Curtis. her main message? “You should never feel like you have to sacrifice your décor to have a pet. There are many materials, furniture pieces, and items that are pet-friendly, but also durable enough for an animal and can match the existing décor of your home.”

DIY Network

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in 12 Tips for Pet Friendly Decorating, Julia Szabo and Nan Ruvel offer a list of advice on how to keep your walls, floors and furniture looking great. “The key is choosing the right materials and accommodating your animals’ needs,” says author Julia Szabo, who shares her digs with a dozen rescued dogs and cats. She says an animal-friendly house is more comfortable for humans too. “If a house doesn’t work with dogs, it won’t work with children or guests either.”

at the end of the day, we want our dogs to feel at home in a house that belongs to us all. it definitely takes a bit of compromise and some creativity, but that’s one of the reasons we work so hard to create beautiful patterns for our molly mutt duvets – we want them to be a beautiful part of your home, no matter what your style!