Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Best Cake EVER

This will always be my
favorite cake. It represents a huge milestone in our lives. Our daughter is
one. We made it, she made, we loved every minute of it. I absolutely cannot
believe a year has passed.

I wanted something special and beautiful for her first birthday and cake smashing photo session without spending a fortune, so I knew I was going to have make my own. For being my first cake decorating experience (no I do not count throwing sprinkles on top as decorating), I think it turned out great and this style is very forgiving. Any beginner can do this 🙂

Of course I also had to
show off another GREAT find from the thrift store. This gorgeous cake stand
was only $9. This stand is super similar if you can’t find a used one. Wasn’t it perfect?!!?

Everyone was amazed by the cake and even more amazed that I made it. Look out for step by step instructions to make an ombre rosette cake of your own!

Special thanks to my bestie for some great photos! Thanks Kimberly!

Thursday, October 8, 2015

Biggest Bang for Children Consignment

Consignment shops or consignment sales sell secondhand goods
for owners, with some sort of fee kickback for the sell. Most consigned goods
are normally priced a little higher than thrift stores but most always lower
than the original purchase price. Both sellers and buyers can win through
consignment markets. As a seller you can get rid of closet clutter for a
reasonable profit and as a buyer you are getting quality clothes for a
discounted price. A lot of consignment stores do specialize in name brand or
luxury  clothing, jewelry and
accessories, making it more appealing for both the seller and buyer. The seller
doesn’t have to give away a high end item and for someone who cannot afford a
luxury item new, buying consignment puts an item in an a realistic price range.

My recent experience with consignment was not in a store but
through a community sale benefitting a non-profit called The Eastern Prince
William Mothers of Multiples Club. The Club is organized to be of aid to
mothers of multiples with networking and support, and also fund towards
education, research and charitable purposes. The prices were comparable to local thrift stores and I felt good actually seeing the women who
were selling their items and knowing that it was helping local mothers.

This was also possibly the MOST organized I’ve ever seen a
secondhand sale. Everything was categorized, fully labeled, in bags, prices,
etc. It was amazing! And I lucked out because it was a rainy morning, that the
sell was not that busy yet and I didn’t feel like I had to fight for things. I
had the girl 18-24 month aisle all to myself and took my time picking what I
wanted out. Of course with full arms in about 20 minutes, I had to still
reexamine my picks with Willie at the checkout, but we still walked out with a
huge bag full of clothes for $50!! 18 items for $50 to be exact which averages
out to about $2.70 per item (1 jacket, 3 sweaters, 4 onesies, 3 pants, 2 skirt/dress, 3 pajamas, 1 pair of shoes, and one fitted crib sheet).

How to get your biggest bang for your buck?

  1. Look for jackets. The pink medium weight Oshkosh jacket was a great find at $8.
  2. Look for items still with tags or in original packaging (like the fitted crib sheet I found) = AMAZING 
  3. Look for full outfits. I got 5 full outfits for around $30!
  4. Pajamas. We love these easy zip up PJs and for $2-3/each, they were a deal from buying brand new at about $10 each. Buying secondhand  saved us over $21 for 3 pairs.
  5. Look for shoes. These adorable (brand new condition) Carter’s white toddler shoes were $4, which are normally $15 (70% savings!)

Some things to look out for:

  • Stains…yuck.
  • Socks are extremely hard to find in good condition. The bottoms just gross me out entirely.
  • Rips, tears, pulled fabric, missing buttons, and any imperfection that would make you unhappy with your purchase.

Support the recycling of clothes! Your baby grows way too
fast to splurge on new and it’s a great way to be GREEN!

Monday, October 5, 2015

Statement Wedding Signage

This year has been full of bridal showers, bachelorettes,
and weddings! Willie and I have had a total of six weddings to attend (plus a
wedding reception for an elopement in St. Thomas). It was an absolute joy to celebrate
these amazing couples and wish them a lifetime of happiness.

My friends are also the best wedding decorators on earth! I totally need another wedding from all the ideas I’ve gotten this year. Metallic was huge this year, especially the use of gold accents. Two of my favorite uses were of course from repurposed frames.

 A little history on this first repurposed frame…This was my grandmother’s frame that used
to host a huge collage of family photos in her home. When she passed I drove
all of her belongings (including this frame) from Florida to Virginia. I
removed all the photos for safekeeping  and
painted the backboard using chalkboard paint. I had left it the original teal color until the recent bridal shower for Nicole (my other gold bride) where I just used gold spray paint to give it a little facelift and match her color theme. This frame has served so many purposes including my wedding, my baby shower, two bridal showers, and of course Kelly’s wedding.

My friend Kelly created the most perfect wedding out of a southern magazine and I was so honored she used a little piece of me in her decorations. Her cousin is an absolute amazing artist and created this one of a kind sign for the guest seating assignments. Kelly’s vision for the entire wedding was absolute PERFECTION. The stunning bride (and handsome groom) really treated their guests to an amazing party too!

The second gold frame was a spectacular find as well! Nicole
is the most amazing person with the absolute perfect style, so I knew that her
wedding would be nothing less than 100% perfection…and it was. All of the
little details Nicole included were flawless and with almost all of them
borrowed, secondhand, or handmade, she really delivered detail on a budget.  Nicole bought this frame from another bride
that found this at the thrift store for $30!! If you could see this frame in
person, it’s giant! So for $30 already chalk painted from another bride’s craftiness,
it was a steal!! 

So if you are in the market to glam up your wedding with
some metallic signage…scout your local thrift store or yard sales and repurpose a large frame with some spray paint and chalkboard paint…viola beautiful DIY wedding signage!

Friday, September 25, 2015

Hug in a Cup

In the spring and fall our city hosts a very prominent arts and craft show that pulls the attention of thousands of attendees and of course…I am one of them. There are tons of local businesses and artists which makes it one of my favorite events. This year I found a pottery artist that I was absolutely obsessed with!! Clays of Our Lives (pretty hilarious) by Brian Beckenheimer does not disappoint with his wonderfully crafted (almost tie-dye colored) functional stoneware. I went crazy and at $12 for these huge custom mugs, they were a crazy steal! These beauties just make my morning coffee so much better with their little personalities! (I also got a soup bowl and he threw in the mini vase as a thank you gift…so nice!)