Archive | March, 2012

Storybook Baby Shower – Part 2 {The Menu}

19 Mar

In case you missed my last post, I recently co-hosted a storybook-themed baby shower for a dear friend. Last time, I told you a little bit about the invitations we sent to set our storybook scene.

A lot of my inspiration came from this darling baby shower featured on Martha Stewart. After looking through her pictures, I decided that another fun way to weave in the storybook theme would be through cute, children’s book-themed menu items. I tried to fight the temptation to let this drive the menu too much, so that we would still end up with a balanced and appetizing spread. Here’s what we settled on:

  • The Little Quiches that Could {Vegetarian Mini-Quiches}
  • Peter Cottontail Pastry Puffs {Savory Mini-Choux Puffs}
  • Mad Hatter’s Tea Sandwiches {Salmon and Cucumber Sandwiches}
  • Jack Jump over the Carrot Sticks {Vegetable Platter}
  • Green Eggs and “Ham” {Avocado Deviled Eggs with Turkey Bacon}
  • If You Give a Mouse a Cookie {Lemon Blossoms}
  • Ring around the Rose Petal Pound Cake {stay tuned for this recipe in a later post!}
  • Velveteen Cupcakes {Red Velvet Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting}
  • Hush-a-Bye Bellinis {Prosecco with Peach Puree}
  • Paddington’s Perfect Punch {Cranberry Juice and Ginger Ale}

Of course, another reason I was excited to have a themed menu was that it meant making menu cards! The beauty of these little cards is that they were made using only items already on hand: scrap paper for the dark blue circle bases, pages from an old dictionary headed for the recycle bin, mini-clothes pins left over from a wedding project, and one sheet of cream paper left over from the invitations. They came together using a circle punch, scalloped circle punch, and glue dots! I realize not everyone has mini-clothes pins on hand, but the point is, it’s fun to see what you can do using just the things you have around the house!

Next time I’ll wrap up this little series with some pictures of the finishing touches that brought it all together. Enjoy!

Storybook Baby Shower – Part 1 {Invitations}

13 Mar

This past weekend was a vivid reminder of how quickly things in life keep moving, as I co-hosted my very first baby shower. It seems like only yesterday that the other hostess, the honoree, and I were sipping happy hour cocktails on some Capitol Hill patio or other, as we swapped war stories about our first jobs out of school and the boys we were dating. Before long, we were planning each other’s engagement parties and traveling for weddings to such exotic locales as Mexico, Chevy Chase, Maryland, and Buffalo, New York. And now, here we are – all married and preparing to welcome a new life into our growing family of friends.

I did some searching around on the web {mostly Pinterest and Martha Stewart} for ideas and themes, and finally settled on the idea of a Storybook Baby Shower. I don’t think I’m alone in feeling that some of my strongest and best memories from childhood are of my parents reading to my sister and me before bedtime, so I thought the very books that shaped all of us would be a fitting theme for welcoming this new baby into the world.

Whether your event has an explicit theme or just a general feel, the invitation is your first chance to set the tone. In this case, I wanted our invitations to evoke memories of a classic storybook – warm yet ubiquitous, with a touch of magic. Also, since we know that the baby is a boy, I decided to stick with a traditional palette of blues.

After a fun ladies afternoon of crafting, we were happy with the way they turned out – here’s a look at what we sent our guests. Stay tuned for more details on our Storybook Baby Shower.

Other than the tree image on the cover, which was hand-stamped, everything was printed using a home printer. Here are the supplies we used to create our storybook invitations.

  • 8.5″x11″ cardstock paper – each sheet will make two invitations {Cover weight paper in Lake from Paper Source}
  • 8.5″x11″ printer paper – each sheet will make two invitations {Text weight paper in Luxe Cream from Paper Source}
  • 4 3/8″x5 3/4″ envelopes {A2 envelopes in Night from Paper Source}
  • Inkadinkado Tree of Life stamp {I got mine at A.C. Moore, but can’t currently seem to find one online}
  • Inkpad {Prussian Blue Color Box Chalk Inkpad from Paper Source}
  • Decorative tape for the “spine” and the envelope {Washi Masking Tape from Paper Source – looks like it’s not currently available, but check out www.cutetape.com for lots of fun ideas!}
  • Printable labels {File Folder Labels in Superfine Soft White from Paper Source}
  • Double-sided tape to hold the pages in place on the cover {Tape Runner from Paper Source}

Hope you like them – and maybe even have some new ideas for an event of your own!

A basement update and a Craigslist adventure

2 Mar

I am so excited to finally report some more progress in our basement! A few months have gone by since I last posted about our basement project, when I was longing for that perfect rug to set the stage for the rest of our decor.  I wanted something more modern and playful than what we have going on in the main level, with color(s) that would bring together the coral and navy palette I’m eying.

Well, a lot happened quickly in December/January as we found a rug that we both love, a futon that seems comfortable enough to sit and sleep on {we were limited as to what we could get down the stairs}, and a used desk for my future workspace crafting corner.

Here’s a sneak peek at some of my favorite details in the room so far.

This Anthropologie vase is straight from my Pinterest inspiration board, and was a Christmas gift from my lovely sister {thanks, Steph!}. Right now I have it grouped with some old mason jars on our new built-in cabinets, and I love it!

Here’s a little, tiny peek at our new rug from CB2.  It’s just what I was looking for, and I promise I’ll share more once the room is “finished”! In case you were wondering, CB2 does honor Crate & Barrel gifts cards – score!

I also have some new fabric to play with that will hopefully soon become throw pillows and a seat cover for my new desk chair.

Got this with a Living Social deal!

My mom spotted this coral print!

And now for the Craigslist adventure! I hadn’t really been looking in earnest for a desk, but had the idea that it would be a good thing to have in the basement to keep my crafting supplies under control. So one day, I just happened upon an ad for a used desk that I really liked. And at $40 for the desk and chair, the price certainly seemed right as well! Through the magic of Craigslist, I was on my way to a storage unit in Centreville, VA later that evening to check it out.

I got more than I bargained for in terms of excitement, as the gate into the storage facility was malfunctioning. As the large fence/gate swung precariously in the air, it became apparent that there would be no pulling our cars up to the unit for an easy retrieval of the desk. Instead, the seller and I found ourselves watching the timing of the swinging gate so that we could run under it and safely into the storage area {at this point I definitely had some unpleasant visions of spending the night with a stranger in a storage unit in Centreville!}. Once inside, we moved all of the desk pieces as close to the gate as possible and then talked strategy.

After entering the code in a keypad about 20 feet from the gate, the gate would swing about 3/4 of the way up before coming back down … and then 1/2 way up again before bouncing back and forth a couple of times and finally crashing to the ground. We figured that if I waited by the gate with the desk while she entered the code, she could run over to the desk in time for that second half-way lift of the gate and we could safely carry it out. We watched a couple of times to really get our timing down, and then made a break for it {picture Super Mario dodging swinging fireballs to rescue the princess}! If anyone happened to be watching us, I’m sure it was highly amusing {but if they were, shame on them for not helping us – one more person would have made this infinitely easier}.

Anyway, we did it! And I know I have a new BFF and partner in crime if I ever decide to move to Centreville {thanks, Sharon, for being willing to go through that ridiculousness to help get my new desk out}! As I drove back down I-66, I started to wonder if it was in fact her desk to sell – had I just helped rob a storage unit??

Okay, thanks for indulging me if you’re still with me at this point … here’s a picture of the desk! It only needs a little touch-up, a new cover for the seat, and the yellow panels slide out for easy repainting! I’m pretty excited! My parents are staying with us in a couple of weeks, so that should be just the motivation needed for that final push to get most of the finishing touches done! Stay tuned …

New {used} desk and a curious cat checking it out!