February 2010 archive

Food or Faux?

| Food, Gifts, Grown-Up

Play food is huge in the kiddo market. I’m crazy about Yellow Label Kids’ knitted sweets and Haba’s felt and wood foods. But now I feel like there’s a trend towards foods that look inedible (but really are) and products that aren’t edible but look it. What am I talking about? Look!

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Food or Faux? It’s faux! This is soap, people! Amazing craftsmanship, but do I really want to wash my hands with a cinnamon bun? Soaps by Soapopotamus .

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Food or faux? It’s food! Yes, dear readers, these crayons from Luxirare are made from ingredients like sesame seeds, melted marshmallow, yellow Fruity Pebbles, dried banana, and more. Found via Petite Planet. I do think kids will eventually be chomping down on wax if they get to savor these even once.


Food or faux? It’s food! Here is a classic cupcake that really is sugary-sweet perfection—no wax, no weirdness. From my favorite local Brooklyn bakery, One Girl Cookies.

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Wallpaper Ideas

| Decor, DIY Home

In my 2D design class in art school, my teacher filled a bowl with scraps of paper on which were written different natural objects or animals. From that object, we had to create a repeat pattern in three different color schemes. I randomly picked sea anemone from the bowl, and, to really date myself, I walked promptly to the library to look up sea anemone in the encyclopedia. Yes, you heard me, this was BGE (Before the Google Era).

It was really that lesson that taught me how pattern and design are organically derived from nature. I kinda want that assignment again—maybe with another sea creature—to see what I’d do with it twelve years later. (Okay fine, fifteen years.)


At first glance, this wallpaper by Paperboy appears to be an abstract pattern, but after a few seconds, you realize you’re looking at shadow puppets. How sweet for a kids room?


Dan Funderburgh takes a sort of different approach and weaves city icons into his more traditional floral patterns. This wallpaper is appropriately called Central Park (notice the rats).

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Turner Peacock wallpaper works in a little bit of British sports iconography and a little bit of the animal world. Both are totally genius. The green paper is called Tennis (they also have a Cricket design) , and the neutral one, Ibis. Found via Design Sponge.

If you’re in the market for a sea anemone-inspired wallpaper, just holler. I’m your girl.

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Wedding Bliss 001

| DIY Home, Everyday Crafts, Food, Grown-Up, Parties

Even though I got married in May, I still love to peruse the wedding blogs. You can’t beat the delicacy, loveliness, and thoughtfulness of weddings details and crafts. Snippet & Ink, 100 Layer Cake, and Style Me Pretty are three of my faves. So clearly, when planning my nuptials, these were my daily reads.

Needless to say, as a crafter, my wedding specifics were a big deal; nothing was decided on lightly. I pulled out my Martha Stewarts (both Living and Weddings), Marie Claire Idees, and obsessively visited the blogs. Here are a few details in Part 001 of my Wedding Bliss…

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We got married at the amazingly lovely Osborn Castle (Cat Rock) in Garrison, New York. The forecast was bleak on May 16th, but amazingly, the rain held out until after we tied the knot and went into the tent. The last photo in the grid above was the seating chart that guests found when the walked into the castle. Amazing photos by one of my absolute favorite photographers, Heather Weston.

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Once the guests found their table (there were 6 long wooden farm tables), they were greeted with a ceramic rock place card at their seat. Ours read Bride and Groom and our nieces and nephews got heart-shaped ones. Each of our 90 guests got their own rock—needless to say it was a crafting feat. I used air dry clay, letter stamps from Making Memories, black ink architecture pens, and once they were dry, I coated them with a glossy varnish. Our flowers were by the incredible Brooklyn florist, Saipua.


We didn’t want a traditional guest book, so we went to the Strand to find an interesting substitute to use in lieu of the traditional blank-paged album. We decided on this old, hardbound copy of the Sears catalog. People found pages that applied to their tastes or interests, and wrote notes on top of the listings with Sharpies. After the initial confusion, our guests had fun with it. (To explain the inscription pictured, Michael and I met at Staci and Matt’s wedding.)

Ok, so that is all I can muster for Part 001 of Wedding Bliss, stay tuned…

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Bookshelves for the Creative Reader

| DIY Home, Grown-Up

What happened to the old-school concept of a simple wall-mounted bookcase with books? A place where you randomly shelve your books, perhaps in genre groupings? Well our design-obsessed world has moved beyond and a bookcase is now as much a focal point as a work of art.


I have a tear sheet of this product hanging on my bulletin board at work. Of course I have no idea where I pulled it from, so I was psyched to find it on the LMNOP blog. I love how simple they are, but what if they were painted with chalkboard paint and you could label your book categories? Love, love.


I know this is not a new idea, but I am still smitten with it. My husband refuses to use the spine color as a reference point to find a book. But as we start packing our books for the move, I’m going to secretly pack them by color. Just in case. Found via Color Me Happy.


“Where’s my Catcher in the Rye?,” he asks. “Check Idaho.” Oh Ohdeedoh!

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Vintage Suitcase Treasure

| Decor, DIY Home, Furniture, Grown-Up

Every time I go to a flea market, I stare at old suitcases and wonder what I would do with one if I took it home. Clearly I’m not the first to have thought of the possibilities…take a look.

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Two fabulous options of suitcase tables found at Bijou Kaleidoscope. Brilliant. I’m especially impressed with the engineering of the one on the right.


I love the idea of turning a make-up case into a vanity case. Found via Crafting a Green World.


How great would these be in an airline exec’s office? So clever. Found via Apartment Therapy.


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Dreaming of Planters

| Nature

I know it’s February and gardening months seem like a distant memory or a far-away future, but that’s exactly why I need to daydream about plant life.


Imagine if every pothole was planted into a lovely garden? Many tires would be saved! Pothole gardens by Pete Dungey; found at Cup of Jo.


Have you ever unpacked a box of books from your basement and found that it had been ruined by water damage? Turn them into planters. Found via Happy Cavalier.


These planters mimic the method of growing avocados; just rest them in a small cup or bowl of your choice. Found via Crib Candy.

Who else is ready to get their green thumb on?

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Faux Antler Crafts

| Decor, DIY Home, Gifts, Grown-Up

I know this trend has been, well, trending for a while, but I’m feeling like faux antlers* are not only lodgey-cool, but they are also utilitarian.


Not only are these electrical outlets adorable, but they are useful too. Plug your charger in and rest your phone, camera, or whatever on top of the antlers, keeping your electronics away from any dusty floorboards.


Ever since I visited the Savannah College of Art and Design last summer, I’ve had a major crush on these plush animal busts, cleverly called Plushkill. They are quirky and sweet, don’t ya think?

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My friends Lissa and Alex gave me Fred (this cardboard moose) for my birthday this year. They came late to the scavenger hunt, but they guessed there may be 35 pieces, thus qualifying it for the contest. (Read this post if you don’t know what I speak of.) I can’t wait to hang our friend Fred in the new apartment (more on that later).

*No animals were harmed in the production of these products.

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Good Deed Cookin’

| Food


For the past 10 summers, I have volunteered a week in August to Birch Family Camp, a residential camp program that brings New York City families living with HIV/AIDS to the woods for a week. It is seven real days of respite for these families that live everyday with the realities of illness, poverty, and many of life’s devastating trials.

Over the last 6 months, we collected recipes from the camp families and volunteers to put together our version of a family cookbook, S’more to Love. It is full of anecdotes, smiling faces, and of course, delicious recipes from all over the world.

We are a teeny program that really and truly improves the lives and spirits of our campers. We struggle each year to meet our budget so that our campers can shine with glitter and drink bug juice for one more year. $40, the cost of the book, can feed a whole group of campers for a full day. That’s nothing, right? Nothing, but everything.

Special thanks to Blurb.com for their generous donation and professional printing.

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Balloon Inspiration

| DIY Home, Early Elementary, Everyday Crafts, Grown-Up, Older Elementary, Tween to Teen

I must begin with a confession: I don’t like balloons. But honestly, these photos might make me change my mind. Really, they might.


As Color Me Katie says, “Every morning should start with a colorful bunch of balloons!”


The more the merrier was most definitely the intention behind this balloon party. Found via Oh Happy Day!

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A French chateau with balloons spilling out? Nothing better. Found via Party Perfect Blog.


Leave it to Martha to dress ’em up like sweet ‘lil animals.

I take it back. Balloons have won me over.

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