Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Interiors/Kids: Sweet Sweet Life Inspires!

Check out the fantastic San Diego home of Amy Hansen from Sweet Sweet Life! I love how she integrates the colors and toys that most parents try to hide out of sight. This seems like a great decorating philosophy when raising kids: if the house is bright, cheery and filled with child-like wonder, then all of its inhabitants (parents included) will embody these traits as well.
Read the whole article here (there are some great ideas!)
And check out Sweet Sweet Life!

I love vintage luggage, but now I want to trade in my old suitcases and hatboxes for these cutey-pie suitcases!

What a fantastic use of a hallway! Frees up the fridge, and keeps those creative juices flowing for the whole family:

I'm doing this. The colanders are one of those ideas that I'm kicking myself for not thinking of first!

LOVE these lights! Wiring a lamp like this is easily done with parts from Home Depot. Trust me.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Kids: A Pillowcase Dress for my Bebe

Taking the sheets off the bed last week, I noticed that a pillowcase from my favorite set had a gigantic tear down the center. I almost tossed it, but then I remembered hearing about 'the pillowcase dress' (and seeing a $60 version of the design at a baby boutique!), and I thought I'd try my hand at it.

The rip being in the center of the case, I was a little short on the length, so I added a ruffle of coordinating fabric (in a smaller print, of course).
The sewing was minimal, and my man called me a female MacGyver when he saw the (quickly) finished product.
I first tried to use super cute polkadotted grosgrain, but it was too wide and rigid to let the dress hang correctly:
I replaced it with a narrower ribbon, and I felt pretty good about the results. By no means is it a fancy dress, and it kind of looks like a sack, but it works for playing around the house or running errands. I like how it feels kind of 'little girl out on the farm'.
And yes, my daughter is wearing jeans with the dress -- now that she's walking, she doesn't have time for that 'getting dressed' stuff!!!

Detailed directions (and some pretty pillowcases) available at Bumblebee Linens... check them out!

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Design: Azure Amore

Robin's egg blue is my second favorite color after red, but I've found I can't actually stand to decorate more than a room of my house with any variation of scarlet. I'm obsessed with constantly tweaking my interiors, and my heart skipped a beat when I found Erin's beautiful blog House of Turquoise
Take a peek at these beautiful interiors:


Thanks, Erin, for letting us lust over your blog!

Kids: Good Directions for an Adorable Knitted Beanie

Some of you may remember that I have written about my desire to learn to knit. I've taken it up, but I'm such a novice that most patterns leave me a bit flabbergasted. Here is one from Michelle at TwoAndSix that has given me some 'I can DO it!' confidence:

Finished measurements:

18"/47 cm long x 8"/20cm wide

Any bulky yarn would work well. I've used Moda Vera Shiver (super soft for a little persons head, and it drapes beautifully). 2 x 50 gram balls.
[approximately 90m of yarn]

Needles and Notions:
1 pair 7.5mm needles
Tapestry needle

Not important in this pattern.

Using Provisional Cast on on method, cast on 25 stitches.

Row 1: Knit
Row 2: Purl
Starting with Row 3, be sure to slip (as if to purl) the last three stitches on each KNIT row. This will give you and i-cord trim to keep the edge from curling.
Row 3: Knit (being sure to slip the last 3 stitches!)
Row 4: Purl

Repeat Rows 3 & 4 until your piece is long enough to wrap around your child's head.

Break working yarn, leaving a tail long enough for grafting. Remove provisional stitches and place live sitches on needle. Knit into the little half stitch at the end of the non i-cord edge to make up equal number of stiches on each needle.

Using Kitchener Stitch, graft the 2 sets of live stitches together.

Join top seam, making sure the grafted section is placed at middle back of hat.

Add tassles, and enjoy!"

Thank you, Michelle!!!!

Food: My Chocolate Soulmate

As a follow up to my last post, it would be wrong not to mention my absolute, number one favorite chocolate bar. Lazzaroni, the company who makes the delightful amaretti (in the fantastic packaging and tins)

Also makes some absolutely divine chocolate bars! The best one, in my giddy opinion, is the amaretti crumbles in bittersweet chocolate! It's like a Nestle Crunch bar for adults. It can be a little tricky to find, but please! Seek it out!

Food: In Love with Chocolove!

I am a dark chocolate fanatic, and my man likes to surprise me by picking out new premium chocolate bars for me to try. My absolute favorite brand is Chocolove out of Boulder, CO! I admit, I don't much care for chocolate with a cocoa content of over 65%, and I feel like 'real' chocolate lovers would frown on my provincial taste, but I'm still eating really good chocolate, and really enjoying it, so they can think what they want.
The following three bars are my favorites, and you can buy them at Whole Foods, Target, and probably ye olde grocery store (that's where I find mine). You can also order them from the Choclove website in cases (and save about $0.50 a bar) -- I know what's on my birthday list!!! Plus, if you check out thier website you'll find some really high quality varietal, vintage, limited quantity bars, as well as 'minis' of all the flavors.
Yay! For Chocolove!

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Kids: DIY Play Kitchens!

I have just found genius! IkeaHacker is a brilliant site dedicated to putting the inexpensive stuff at Ikea to use as faux-expensive stuff you actually want! I got all giddy when I found the adorable play kitchens their users made all from Ikea (and home depot, etc) components! The best part is that your little one's dream kitchen will be MUCH cheaper this way, and (second best part) it can be custom designed to blend seamlessly with your play space. I can't wait until we get to build one of these for our little girl!

Kids: First Birthday Jitters!

I have taken a bit of a break from my blog, and have been working on doing non-computer related things (knitting -Update: I'm still on my first scarf, but so far, so good, Baking - I believe I have perfected the vanilla cupcake, and entertaining the family that came to visit baby and celebrate the 4th), but I couldn't abandon my blog. I sometimes heard it at night, calling for me, crying quietly...

Our daughter's first birthday is coming up in two months, and I am already obsessed with ideas. I know she won't have a bit of memory of the event, and it's really just for the adults in her life, but I am stoked just the same. This is what happens when a one-time 'hostess with the mostess' turns into a mommy.

So here are some yummy photos:

this photo from just makes me happy

a cute idea for an invitation
Some incredible cakes!!!

Asian inspired 1st Birthday Childrens Cake

I think I'll get some butterflies for the top of her cake, and maybe one for each female guest to wear in her hair. Naturally, all the men would have to wear those white bowler hats with pink ribbon bands!
Topper Cake for Cupcake Tier
The next several photos are from Martha's site:

I'm going to make these with pink sprinkles and yellow lollipops:

I love the different sizes of cupcakes!

I'm going to festoon the house in these super easy and cheap flowery tissue paper poufs in pinks and yellow:

I think our baby definitely needs a garden fairy-princess dress with lots of tulle, ribbon and butterflies

I wasn't in love with pink until I had a little girl - now I think it's adorable

After collecting all these photos, I have a pretty clear vision of the party -- I can't wait! Of course, I will blog about it when the time comes!

A few ideas From

Put your baby's cute face on the invitation. Have her hold a sign that says "It's my birthday."

Put your baby in his birthday suit. Decorate a simple one-piece T-shirt with stamped-on letters and your child's handprint in paint.

Make it fun for the adults too. Set up a crafting table and have each guest decorate a card for your baby's future birthdays. Every year, she can open a card that was made at her first party.

Serve dessert in recycled baby-food jars. Chocolate mousse, ice cream, or chocolate pretzel rods are all good options.


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