Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Bag Designer

When we were at the Melrose Trading Post I came across this designer that I thought did some really beautiful work. The purses are extremely pricey, and there's almost no information on the website, but I still thought that such beautiful work deserved to be shared!

Tuesday, March 30, 2010


So I had some extra flowers left over from my invitations, and I decided to string them together with needle and thread for this little garland. I'm thinking that it will look cute over the window at the party-- or maybe I will un-string them to sprinkle on the table, or leave in this string to wind around plates of cakes and goodies.

Monday, March 29, 2010

Street Fairs

I love street fairs. They're super fun and there's tons going on and there's food and booths and people and animals and other awesome awesome things. This weekend, my boyfriend and I hit three fantastic street fairs :)

1. The ghettogloss Siverlake Art* Craft and Vintage fair off Sunset Ave (Free Entry!) (scroll through the events to find the next one)

2. The Melrose Trading Post at Fairfax High (2$ Entry Fee)

3. The Antiques and Collectibles Market at the Santa Monica Airport (5$ Entry Fee)

I found some really great things at these three markets-- which I'll be sharing with you over the next few days :) Thanks for being so patient over the last couple weeks. I have high hopes that I am back to my regular schedule!

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Ball Gown Update

So not only have I fixed the netting:

Which is really good, because I thought I was going to have to rip it all out and replace it all with new, but I also found shoes from Off Broadway and a bag that I already had:

I decided to pair bronze with the Avocado, which I am really thinking will pop. Now all I have to find is a belt, and the whole thing will be set, which is really exciting because the Ball is on April 17! My boyfriend and I are very excited, and I will be sure to show photos when it happens :)

Previous posts here.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Graduation Invitations

So I decided I wanted to make my own graduation invitations for college, because I feel that the ones offered by my school are way too formal. Here's the process:

The first step was to draw flower shapes on the felt I bought from Micheal's. I used flower fondant cutters to make the shapes, and I made something like 10 large, 30 medium, and 15 small on each sheet of felt, 5 sheets of felt. It took a couple nights to do draw the shapes and then I have to:

Cut out all the flowers. Cutting the flowers out took forever. I think I (with some help from my brother, Mom, and boyfriend) spent about three nights cutting out the flowers. It took some time, but It wasn't particularly difficult, so I watched TV while I did it-- no big deal.

Next, I printed the announcements and the party invitations on precut/creased cards that were paired in the package with envelopes. I cut the invitations from the announcements so I could mix the colors.

Next, I prettified the edges of the party invitations. I wasn't going to do as much to them, so I wanted to make it a little more special all on its own. I used an edging scissors for this.

So now I have the flowers cut, the party invitations edged, and the announcements ready to be decorated.

Next I cut my vellum into the right size and edged it like I did the party invitations.

After cutting all the pieces into the right shapes, I finished off the party invitations. I used flower stamps on the corner to add more color and happiness (my Oma and I are rather fond of clear stamps because you can see where you put them!) and then added a magnet to the back so that the invitations can be stuck up for people to remember. That was the last step for the party invitations!

Then I added a stamped flower (and by "I" I mean "my boyfriend") for a little more color.

I went ahead and put the party invitations in the envelopes to clear up a little workspace...and so I wouldn't lose them!

Then I got to work on the graduation announcements; First, I sewed the vellum on two sides (with two different colors of thread, one for each side) and then I lined the felt flowers on top of the velum along the other two sides and added two more colors of thread to attach them. Voila! Combine and:

Hand address!! I'm so happy with how they turned out, it was worth how long they took to make! And soon...back to my regular crafting schedule :p

Friday, March 19, 2010


So this is my second day in a row of being super late, so let me just break down and tell you why I've been lagging so much:

I didn't want to update on the brown sweater until I had a whole panel done, but the brown sweater is on hold because...

I'm making my invitations for my Graduation Party, and they're taking FOREVER.

So please don't hate me...I'll post as soon as I can!

Thursday, March 18, 2010

New post!!

I'm so sorry I'm so late on my post!!

Go check out the post on my other blog (I know, I'm cheating).


Wednesday, March 17, 2010

New Layout

Clearly, I was not happy with the last layout, but I'm really thinking this is "the one" as far as layouts go (although now I think I need to re-do my header image). What do you think?

If you want to see more pretty layout options, the website I found this one on is here.

Have fun :)

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Roasted Chicken with Tomatoes and Olives

Mom and I made this for dinner between cookie steps:

Hands-on time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour
Serves 4

1 lemon
2 pints grape tomatoes
1 head garlic, cloves seperated
1 cup pitted kalamata olives, halved
8 sprigs fresh thyme
1 3-lb chicken, cut into 8 pieces
Kosher salt and black pepper
1/2 cup dry white wine
1 small loaf country bread, warmed

1. Heat oven to 425 degrees F. Using a vegetable peeler, remove strips of zest from the lemon. (Reserve the lemon).

2. In a large roasting pan, toss the tomatoes, garlic, olives, thyme, and lemon zest with 1 tablespoon of the oil.

3. Nestle the chicken, skin-side up, among the vegetables and drizzle with the remaining tablespoon of oil. Season the chicken and vegetables with 3/4 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Roast until the chicken is cooked through, 35-40 minutes.

4. Remove the chicken from the hot roasting pan. Squeeze the juice from the lemon into the roasting pan and add the wine. Gently stir, scraping up any bits stuck to the pan. Serve the chicken and vegetables with the pan juices and bread.

We actually skipped the head of garlic and used garlic out of a shaker instead, and skipped the whole chicken and bought four breasts instead. The dinner was delicious, and the bread was great to eat the tomatoes and olives with!

The recipe comes from RealSimple magazine. While the magazine's subject doesn't exactly gear toward me (it's for moms with full time careers) I love the recipes and some of the home style tips. I recommend picking it up every once in awhile. It should probably give you enough ideas for dinner to last you a half a month or more!

Monday, March 15, 2010

Pot of Gold Cookies

So get ready for one of my longest posts ever! I just really wanted you to see the whole process for these really cool Pot of Gold cookies. One of the major tips I would have for these is to do things one at a time.

So the first thing I did was make the cookie dough on a Thursday night. I wanted the cookies to be ready for a Saturday night party, and I wanted to give myself a lot of time, because I knew I had a busy weekend ahead. The dough only took me about a half hour to make, and then it just went in the fridge for when I was going to be ready for it!

The next day (Friday Night) my Mom and I pulled the dough out of the fridge and rolled and cut it. We had to let it sit out for about a half hour, but after that it was very easy to work with. It took us about an hour to get everything rolled and cut, and then we took a break to make dinner before taking the next step.

As the cookies came out of the oven we set them out on paper towels to cool. Since we made and ate dinner in between cooking and frosting them, we could be absolutely sure they were entirely cool before we worried about frosting.

So after dinner me and mom shared the duties of frosting and sprinkles. The frosting recipe was a lot of fun, although I did have some problems finding the meringue powder. I didn't find it at Vons, but Joann's did have it. The canister was much larger than I needed, but hopefully I'll be able to use it in other things. Instead of using the zigzag pattern the recipe recommends, Mom and I actually used a spiral. It made it a little smoother, although the frosting does spread out nicely before it dries solid.

The final step was to find a really cute tiny pot at Homegoods that I could put the cookies in to serve at the party. The cookies along weren't particularly delicious, but adding the frosting made it really yummy. I highly recommend using this recipe for some of the other ideas The Decorated Cookie mentions, or coming up with some of your own!

Sunday, March 14, 2010


Call me crazy, but I'm posting something I did for work today!

My supervisor asked me to put together binders to help organize her paperwork for her semesters. We only have a black and white printer, so I went ahead and put in clip art and then boosted it with colored chalk. It's a little more work for such a simple job, but now every time she pulls out a binder, it's pretty and makes her happy! To me, that makes it important.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

New Post(ish)

So I have something new up at the other blog, that I would very much like some responses on. It's an article that will eventually be revised and turned in as the final paper for my Professional Writing course, and it's on negative political advertising, which I very much enjoy writing about, and which my Senior Thesis is also about. Wordpress lets people comment as anonymous guests, so if you have the time and can run on over and look it over I would be much obliged.

Friday, March 12, 2010


When I was a kid I knew I disliked pancakes. They're too sweet, and they're too heavy, and I just didn't get the rave.

And then I tried them with jam instead of syrup and I realized: I dislike syrup not pancakes! Now I'm not saying you're going to lose a million pounds by replacing your syrup with jam (you'll probably gain because of all the pancakes you end up eating) but I am saying it makes for a much lighter-feeling breakfast, and that it makes me happy.

I thought of other things I plan to try; Peanut butter and jelly pancake sandwiches. Genius? Maybe. Pancakes with fruit syrup instead of maple syrup? Perhaps. Itty-bitty pancakes served with fresh fruit for a summer breakfast. Maybe yogurt as a side?

So I guess they're not as bad as I thought :)

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Potato Casserole

So a pretty short post this time but I wanted you to see this recipe I used for dinner the other night. As you can see, it's a fairly easy recipe, where you take these ingredients:

9 ounces cubed Cheddar cheese
1 cup sour cream
1 teaspoon salt
1 (2 pound) package hash brown potatoes
1 onions
1 (10.75 ounce) can condensed cream of chicken soup
1 (10.75 ounce) can condensed cream of mushroom soup

and mix them and then take these ingredients:

2 cups cornflakes cereal
1/2 cup melted margarine

And mix them for the topping, and then cook for an hour at 350 degrees.

Simple, right? Unless you're me. Then, you forget to buy sour cream, refuse to add onion, and use 2 tablespoons of margarine instead of a half cup. Yet, the whole thing still turned out pretty good. I added a cup of milk to make up for the missing sour cream, and I'm not sure if that was necessary, and I would actually recommend using twice the butter and cornflakes I did, and maybe shredding the cheese instead of cubing it...

But all in all a successful dinner!

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Cereal Squares

I would be fairly willing to say that cereal squares are one of my favorite sweet snacks. And I think one of the reasons I love them so much is (aside from being delicious) there's tons of options for them. Once I made them with regular Rice Krispies and added pastel sprinkles after the marshmallow, and then used cookie cutters to cut them into Easter shapes.

Pretty much any cereal works fine for cereal squares, although if a cereal is too sweet (say you're being begged to try them with Cookie Crunch) you can cut the sweetness with a neutral like Rice Krispies or Cheerios.

The basic recipe is 2 tablespoons of butter and 10 oz of marshmallows melted on the stove, add 6 cups of cereal. This recipe fills about an inch in the bottom of a 9x13, and can be cut in pretty much any size square, rectangle, or cookie cutter shape. Using cookie cutters can be fun if the treats are going to be given away-- it leaves lots of scraps for the kids (and you!) to eat.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

French Toast

So the other day my boyfriend and I made French Toast, minus the nutmeg, and with whole wheat bread instead of white bread and jam instead of syrup. And you know what? It was fantastic.

Mind you, I don't think those changes make it healthy per say...

Monday, March 8, 2010


I've never made Lasagna before, but I though I'd give it a try, because it can't be all that difficult, can it?

Turns out, while it's not difficult, it is rather time consuming, and a little more difficult without a full kitchen. It's also not exactly the cheapest thing I could have made, but it is extremely filling, so it's lasting us for several meals.

We started with a recipe from, a website I use frequently. I would estimate we spent about 30$ on the ingredients, although we did have to buy most of the spices, which most people would already have in their kitchen.

One of the major problems we ran into is that we didn't have a pot big enough to cook the noodles in, so unless you have a stew pot, you'll have fun (like me!) trying to push partially cooked lasagna noodles into a sauce pan without burning yourself. We also used used a fairly small skillet for the meat sauce, which was a pretty close thing (but we avoided any calamity).

If I were to make this as a full meal (for the sake of money, this is all we ate that night) I would probably make a salad and serve it with bread. The recipe suggests Sangiovese with this dinner. We had water, but I'm sure any red would be brilliant.

Have fun!

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Chocolate Cake

So I obviously enjoy making cakes. This is a simple boxed devil's food cake with seedless blackberry preserves.

I use tricks my mom taught me. I bake two 8 inch rounds and then use thread to cut the rounded portion off one of them (I try to keep the prettier of the two halves rounded, so the top of the cake is more evenly rounded). Although I've heard that the 'right' way to do cakes it to have the top flat, I prefer a rounded cake. I suppose it makes it look more home made?

After the cakes are completely cooled I spread the filling and stack the cakes. I was going to cover the whole thing in white frosting, but then I ran out, and sent my boyfriend to buy more.

Sadly, Walgreens carries only chocolate frosting, so I did my best to cover the top in white, and then covered the rest in chocolate. I tried to make an impromptu frosting bag out of a sandwich bag, but I don't recommend trying it. Turns out, sandwich bags have a tucked edge, so when I cut the corner out, I ended up with two holes.

But for being a random compilation of whatever we could find (the sprinkles are from the German Chocolate Cupcakes) I don't think it turned out that bad at all!

Saturday, March 6, 2010


So now the new layout has been up for a bit, and hopefully you know what you do/don't like about it. If there's anything huge, I would be happy to change it. I'll also be working on a new header image, now that I'm tired of the last one.

Let me know if anything's terrible!

Friday, March 5, 2010

Post #6

On Delta Faucets.

If you're interested you can also go read about tennis, personal faith, debate team, or getting out of the house, go read some of my classmates' blogs!

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Ghosthunter's Beanie

This is the first project I have ever done using two strands of yarn for a pattern, and I'm kind of wishing that I had done it for myself instead of for someone else, because it's not perfect at all.

The first thing that I would have liked to know before I made this was that the strand between the patterns has to be very loose. (This can be explained better by looking at pictures of a project-- see the way the strands are loose on the inside of the bag, which the blogger is covering with cloth?). Since I didn't do mine loose enough, the cloth had puckers in it, which I didn't realize until after I had cast off (the drawbacks to knitting while distracted). I looked up solutions, and the internet kindly told me that the only way to fix the problem is to unknit and try again, which in my opinion was not an option.

So what I did instead is cut the place where the strands caused the worst pucker and then tie these ends in a series of knots before weaving them in. It's not the best solution, especially since this is supposed to be a gift for someone, but I just didn't know any other way to save the project. Hopefully my mistake helps you avoid them!

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Updated Doilies 6

You recognize these, of course. As you can see, I ran out of pink yarn, which brings me to a standstill (for now). I put a knot in the last stitch and will undo it when I have more yarn to use to finish this last pink one.

Although I'm out of these two yarns that were my original stash, you'll be happy to know that these doilies are made in the same weight yarn as the brown sweater! So when I'm done with that, I will have (maybe) some brown to tone down these baby soft colors.

I think I am supposed to not like combining different fibers, but I am pretty sure I will like how the fuzzy alpaca goes with the smooth acrylic. And you know what I like best about yarn crafts? If I don't like it, I just pull it out and use the alpaca somewhere else. Voila!

You can see all previous posts here.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

New Major Project: Brown Sweater

I may have told someone at one point that I was never going to knit another sweater but I guess this post means I lied! This yarn was bought from a fantastic yarn shop in Solvang for about 23$ a skein. It's a sport weight in alpaca, and I love it.

So I've started and casted on, and in the process I'm learning french knitting terms, because (and I didn't realize this when I picked the pattern) the whole thing is only in French! But armed with a French knitting dictionary and a solid set of knitting skills, I think I can make it work. Cross your fingers for me!

I'll update as I work on this one, so that you can see how it goes! Since I'll be focusing on this one, other works in progress will be set aside until it's finished (like the blanket and doilies) and I won't start any new projects till it's done. I like to work on one project at a time, so this will pretty much be my focus. I'll be starting on it soon!

Monday, March 1, 2010

Updated Blanket 3

As you can see, the blanket is getting new rows by the week. However, it may have to be put on a little bit of a hold-- I'll tell you why tomorrow!!

See other updated blanket posts here.