Holiday Wreath

This past weekend I attended a “Wreath Making Party” in Ashburn, VA. I had never heard of these Wine & Design parties but it turned out to be so much fun!

 

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The owner of Country Shabby Chic came over to my friends house with all of the supplies we needed to make our wreath and led us through the steps.

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What you will need:

  • Box Wire Wreath
  • 1 roll of Deco Mesh
  • Thick Wired Ribbon
  • Wooden Initial
  • Twist Tie (in wire form)
  • Twine
  • Optional: Jingle Bells, JOY sign, Reindeers, Cinnamon sticks etc

What you will do:

  • Fold your Deco Mesh in half and tie the end on with one of  your wire twist ties
  • Bunch the Deco Mesh in your hand and stuff through the bottom wire of your wreath, then the middle, then the top. You will do this two times in each section until you get to the end

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  • With your remaining Deco Mesh (there shouldn’t be much) you will tie that onto the top rack with a wire twist tie as well
  • Fluff your mesh
  • Make your bow (or pre-buy a bow!) tutorial here
  • Attach your bow with wire twists that go directly into the Deco Mesh
  • Tie the twine onto your wooden monogram letter and attach it to the bottom wire of the wreath
  • Hot glue gun any extras to your wreath

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If you live in the DC/MD/VA area contact Country Shabby Chic for your Wine and Design party — They do much more than wreath making. If you live somewhere else I’m sure there are Wine and Design consultants in your area.

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‘Give Thanks’ Rustic Banner

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I usually buy my banners off of Etsy but decided this year I wanted to tackle one on my own. I went to Michaels and purchased all of my supplies for less than $15 (and I have plenty leftover). I went with the rustic style since this was going on a mirror that hangs over my fall tablescape. This was SO simple, I might never buy a pre-made banner again…

Here is what you’ll need:

  • Pre-cut burlap squares (they look like this)
  • Acrylic Paint in your color of choice
  • Variety pack of sponge spouncers (they look like this)
  • 4.5″  Letter stencils
  • Jute Twine (which looks like this)
  • Hot glue gun/glue sticks

Here is what you’ll do:

  • Lay burlap square to be stenciled on top of a piece of cardboard to ensure table or counter does not get ruined. My carpet learned this the hard way.
  • Center desired letter in the middle of burlap flag. Use a spouncer and paint to stencil the letter onto the burlap. Lay the paint down very thick.
  • Let finished squares dry for an hour or so
  • Flip the squares over (spelling from right to left) and measure the amount of twine you will need (leave extra on the ends so you can hang it up). I left 3/4 of an inch in between each letter.
  • Measure 1/2 inch from top of banner and make a straight line across the back of the burlap squares with your hot glue gun.
  • Lay jute twine on top and let dry for 10 minutes
  • Hang your banner wherever you please

 

Throwback Thursday – High Tea Bridal Shower

Back in August, I traveled to Maryland to celebrate one of my best friends Bridal Showers!

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We went with the High Tea theme because Jacey is a very prim and proper type of lady. The Bridal Shower was held at the Harbor Court Hotel in the Brighton room, which overlooked the Inner Harbor.

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I bought the invitation to the High Tea off of Etsy and had them printed locally. If you are looking for an affordable way to send out invitations, this is the way to go!

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I also had the same Etsy company make me a game called “spill the tea” in the same print that was used on the invitations. The game had questions for the guests to answer about Jacey and Brad’s relationship,  but mostly about Jacey since it was her shower.

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The tables were decorated with teacups and teapots I bought at an antique store in New Jersey. I bought flowers from Whole Foods and added some flower “confetti” to give the white table cloths a pop of color. I also made a few glitter votive candles that you can see in the last picture.

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Favors were completed by the grooms sisters and they stuck to the high tea theme by buying a bundle of tea samplers. I tried the blueberry lemon tea and it was delicious! I made the glitter letters behind the favors by purchasing plain white wooden letters from Michaels, painting them gold and then sprinkling a fine gold glitter on top.

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Instead of a guest book I thought it would be fun to make a date idea jar for Jacey to use when her and Brad have a free weekend. The jar was super easy to make – I bought fabric tape and popsicle sticks for the date ideas and stuck them inside of a mason jar that had ribbon/twine on the outside.

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I purchased a small banner to go above the presents on Etsy (of course) that said High Tea Bride to Be. I could have made this myself to save money but I was so sick during the planning days that I used Etsy for a lot of things!

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The frames with the sayings in them around the room were made by my friend Melissa who also has her own Etsy shop.

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I ordered the large teapot shaped cake from Kirsten’s Cakery and I loved the special touch they added by having a tea bag on the side with Jacey’s name.

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The candy jars were added around the cake for people who weren’t interested in eating cake. I found the chalkboard clothespins at Michaels and we made Southern dessert names to go with each candy on the table. To make the to go bags I just bought regular brown paper bags, lace doilies and used a glitter pen for Brad and Jacey’s initials.

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For the last decorative touch, I made a small photobooth for others to take pictures in front of. The room had great lighting and the pictures turned out really well. I bought some props off of Etsy and printed/cut them out myself. We then glued them to wooden rods I found at Michaels and placed them in milk jars I hand painted.

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Harbor Court Baltimore served a light lunch that consisted of scones and fresh jam, mini tea sandwiches, a trio of desserts, strawberries and whipped cream (some with liquor), tea and champagne (or sparkling cider).

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Jacey opened lots of amazing gifts with the help of her sweet little flower girl.

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We loved seeing everyone get into the High Tea spirit and it was such a beautiful day for the beautiful bride-to-be.

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Painting Pumpkins

Nothing says Halloween like pumpkins! Pumpkin patches, pumpkin lattes, pumpkin recipes and of course pumpkin carving. To be honest, I think I am over the whole pumpkin carving thing… It’s always frustrating trying to make the perfect design and I’m not into cleaning up big messes these days so this year, I painted! Pinterest has a million and one ideas of crafting pumpkins but I tried to use what I had on hand.

It was gorgeous on Saturday so we headed to the patch bright and early to beat the crowds.

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While we were there we picked up 1 extremely large pumpkin, 3 plastic pumpkins and 2 miniature pumpkins for me to decorate. See below for what I did!

Monogram Pumpkin

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Pinterest has stencils you can print out for your monogram but I took the lazy route… This one is very simple, just white & black paint.

Chevron Pumpkin

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First, I spray painted the entire body of the pumpkin white. I then taped off 3 rows of chevron design and used a glitter paint, one section at a time. I finished the pumpkin off by sprinkling fine gold glitter in the glued area. It dries fast!

Polka Dot Pumpkin and Boo Pumpkin

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Just paint on the left and regular tacky glue (it was easier to make circles then using the glitter glue foam brush) with the same fine gold glitter I used above.

Studded Pumpkins

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For the left pumpkin I used sticker rhinestones…about 4 in each section. On the right pumpkin, I painted it a black satin color and used silver puffy paint for a “stud” lookalike.

How will you be decorating your pumpkins this year?

DIY Valentine’s Day Gift

Adam and I tend not to make a big deal out of Valentine’s Day. Fighting the crowds and paying for overpriced meals when its negative degrees outside just isn’t as fun when you’re old 😉 . I love crafting from mason jars because they are so easy to work with. I made the good news jar with a mason jar back in January and I’ve used them for multiple times at bridal showers. If you are looking for an easy and inexpensive gift, this is perfect for you!

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What you’ll need:

  • Popsicle Sticks
  • Washi Tape (or paint)
  • Label Maker (or marker if you use paint!)
  • Mason Jar
  • Ribbon for Jar
  • Tag to tie on to ribbon that says “Date Jar”

Instructions:

  • Add washi tape to popsicle sticks and add your date idea labels on top of that

OR

  • Paint popsicle sticks (red & pink) and write your date ideas on top of it with a paint pen

I would make each design / color a different category. Example: Red — Expensive. Pink — Less Expensive. White — Stay at home. Below are some of my ideas by category.

 

Expensive:

  • Couples Massages
  • Winery Tour / Overnight stay at a Bed & Breakfast
  • Dance Lessons
  • Cooking Class
  • Booking a limo for a fancy dinner
  • Weekend Getaway
  • Broadway Show
  • Dinner Cruise

Less Expensive:

  • Beach Date
  • Hiking Date
  • Ice Skating & Hot Chocolate
  • Dessert Only Date
  • Coffee & Croissant Date
  • Boozy Brunch Date
  • Movie Date
  • Rock Wall Climbing
  • Bowling
  • Cheese & Wine Tasting
  • Comedy Club
  • Sunrise or Sunset watching
  • Happy Hour
  • Fro-Yo
  • Fondue Date
  • Art Gallery
  • Picnic at the park
  • Running Date (5k)
  • Golf / Driving Range
  • Jet-Ski’s
  • Tandem Bike riding
  • Painting Class
  • Kayaking (or Paddle boarding) on the Hudson
  • Burgers & Shake date

At Home:

  • TV Series Marathon
  • Chopped Competition
  • Board Games
  • Champagne by the fire (or the heater haha)
  • Breakfast in Bed
  • Take-out
  • Make personal pizzas from scratch
  • 1,000 piece puzzle
  • Football and Wings
  • Popcorn & Romantic Comedy
  • Breakfast for Dinner
  • Make a fancy dessert together
  • Dinner on our patio
  • Home improvement project

 

What would you add to this date jar? Always looking for ideas 🙂

 

Good News Jar

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I saw a “Good News Jar” on Pinterest and loved the idea of celebrating the little things. We always celebrate the big things (new job, engagement etc..) but tend to forget about the little moments. With this jar, we can capture all of  these moments throughout the year and read them before 2015 (<— whoa) starts.

Some examples of things we will write down to place in the jar:

  • Surprise Gifts
  • Good News
  • Accomplished Goals
  • “LOL” Moments
  • Memories
  • Daily Blessings

If you are interested in making a “Good News Jar” all you need are the following items:

  • Mason Jar
  • Glitter
  • Glitter Glue
  • Ribbon
  • Permanent Tape
  • Cardstock
  • Stickers
  • Paint Pen

If you do make one, feel free to share!

Gift Guide: DIY

If you are more of a homemade gift giver I have a list for you too! I like to think of myself as a crafty person but I’ve never thought about making anything as creative as these gifts below. If you are feeling crafty and giving I’d like them all 🙂 Happy DIY’ing 🙂

 

Candy Cane Vodka

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Photo Coasters

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Chocolate Oatmeal Face Mask

All Natural DIY Chocolate Face Mask from TidyMom for GourmandeintheKitchen.com

 

Newspaper Rose Wreath/Frame

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Shoe Clips

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Monogrammed Wine Glasses

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Painted Ornaments

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Gold Striped Vase

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Lavender Lotion Bars

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Mason Jar Herb Garden

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Sugar Lip Scrubs

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Homemade Holiday Peppermint Spoons

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Homemade Cookie Mix

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Thanksgiving Ideas

Today is my Friday and tomorrow is one of the best days! Thanksgiving has always been one of my favorite holidays because it means LOTS OF FOOD. I’m not really a Turkey fan but gimme gimme gimme those side dishes (aka carbs). Mashed potatoes, cheesy-broccoli rice, stuffing and pumpkin desserts GALORE! Yes, please. If you are hosting Thanksgiving or even just attending one, here are some ideas for you!

 Autumn Apple Cider and Champagne Sangria

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Thanksgiving Nails

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Thanksgiving Place Cards: 

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Thanksgiving Tablescape: Obsessed with gold

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Thanksgiving Dessert: Mini Cheesecake Shots

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Thanksgiving Dessert Table:

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Thanksgiving Side Dish: Grandma’s Cheesy Broccoli Rice

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Thanksgiving Decor:

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Thanksgiving Appetizer: Roasted Pumpkin Brie Fondue (sooo good!)

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Thanksgiving DIY: Wreath(s) — I couldn’t just pick one.

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Best way to use your leftovers: Breakfast Sandwiches; Biscuits, Cranberry, Mashed Potatoes, Turkey, Poached Egg.

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Happy Thanksgiving!

Friday Favorites

Happy Friday everyone! Right now Adam and I are on our way to the beach… Hope this weather clears up! Here are some of my favorite finds from around the blogosphere.

Favorite Gift to Send: Peanut Butter Cup Stuffed Triple Chocolate Cookies

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Favorite Fun Item: Neon Matches

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Favorite Grilled Item: Romaine Lettuce for a fresh caesar salad

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Favorite DIY: Turning drab folding chairs into fab

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Favorite Summer Hair Style: Double Braid

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Favorite Healthy Dinner: Creamy Corn Soup

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Favorite Living Room Inspiration: Crisp & Clean

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Favorite Melt Your Heart: Baby Mermaid (I love the Little Mermaid!)

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Favorite Dream House: Opening Your Kitchen up into the Patio

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Favorite Summer Outfit: Seahorse Shorts

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Favorite Sunday baking idea: Marshmallow Stuffed S’mores Cookies

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Have a good weekend!

Glamorous Bridal Shower

I told you I’ve been busy at Bridal & Baby showers lately! I’m a busy wedding bee this year 🙂

My sisters bridal shower was at Lakewood Country Club and it was a gorgeous spring day!

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The invitation went perfectly with our venue & theme.

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Her wedding colors are champagne and blush so we decided to play off those for the shower too. I always like to stay within wedding colors for a shower because I know the bride is guaranteed to love it.

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This was a seated luncheon so we had place cards for the guests – gold sparkles for chicken and pink for salmon. The circle garland on the above picture was bought off of Etsy as well… Etsy is my best friend when you’re a busy girl.

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Big thank you to Lakewood Country Club for alphabetizing these for me… For some reason I was not doing a good job!

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The guest book was a drawing of a tandem bicycle and guests were to leave their thumb prints in gold or pink and write their name above it.

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I bought the pink frame at Target and purchased the drawing here.

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The favors we’re so perfect for Ashleigh! Miniature bottles of Rose Champagne and a bag of chocolates. What girl doesn’t love champagne and chocolate?

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We also added a small candy table to give the guests something to snack on with dessert.

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I bought the candy at Party City who has entire sections of pink & gold candy making it easy on you. I made the pink covered pretzels because I couldn’t find them anywhere. I chose the raspberry sherbert candy topping from Michael’s and it was GOOD. I found most of the jars at TJ Maxx and tied them with sparkly ribbon I found at Michael’s.

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The take-out bags were pink chevron and polka dots that I purchased off of Etsy. I took a gold paint pen and wrote the date of the shower on each one to spice it up.

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My friend Crystal made the cake for me and as usual did an amazing job!

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She also made these pink rose cupcakes with edible gold dust. It’s great when a cake is pretty and tastes good.

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The I Do sign was perfect to go in between the windows above Ashleigh. Thanks Kelly!

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The gift table had a banner that said Bride to Be which I also purchased off of Etsy. We added flowers to the tables and Chris & Ashleigh’s engagement pictures throughout the room.

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Once the table was set with favors, pictures and flowers, we used the extra ribbon to tie around the napkins.

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You can never have too much glitter 😉

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We also added pink straws to each table for guests who weren’t drinking alcohol. The straw flags can be purchased here.

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Once the guests were seated we played the Almost Newlywed game with Ashleigh. Yes, I do this game at every shower — It’s a game that’s fun for everyone and doesn’t make anyone participate by wrapping toilet paper around themselves.

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Ashleigh did surprisingly well — but I think she cheated 😉

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 The glass Ashleigh is holding above was also purchased off of Etsy.

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Once the game was finished, lunch was served. I chose the salmon and it was cooked perfectly!

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Lastly, Ashleigh opened gifts. She got some amazing new things and I’m sure she will be cooking for her future husband verrrry soon.

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Congrats to my sissy!!

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We love you 🙂