Month: April 2015

they said yes!

It’s officially one year until my wedding so I thought I’d give you a peek into my wedding life with a DIY. Like many modern brides, asking your best ladies to be part of your entourage is a big deal. And being a bit on the crafty side (ok, maybe a whole lot on the crafty side), I wanted my ladies to be asked the craftiest way I could think up. Behold: my bridesmaids ask boxes! I included a clever card, wedding day info, bridesmaid info, color palette, floral clip, and an official tote — all handmade! Let’s build one! The first step is to decide what you’re going to put inside. Then you can gather supplies and find the right box to put it all in. This was quite a process, but every time I decided on another piece I got super excited! My box was an 8″ x 8″ x 4″ kraft container, generally used for decoupage. I went for au naturale and gathered some crinkly filler paper. Fill your box with filler. If …

inked.

Impress your friends and family with these fancy note cards! I always thought that this look was achieved with watercolor paint, and it can be, but I learned another technique with stamp ink and a foam sponge. Grab some thick cardstock cut to size, scratch paper for making a mess, inks of choice, and a foam sponge – you can also use a make-up sponge. Load up your foam sponge with ink, then blot and drag, or drag and blot, until you get a gradient to your liking. How easy is that? Allow the ink to dry and then write a sweet note. Tip: For the above look, fold your paper first, then add ink. Extra credit: Punch a hole and use as a gift tag. Stamp on a message. Round the corners for a smooth finish. Hang it up and call it art. Try it out and share your end result on Instagram. Tag @crafterateur for a feature.

to the lake!

My fiancé and I love being able to drive away for the weekend. This time we whisked away to Tahoe Vista in North Lake Tahoe. My parents are both retired (lucky them!) and they were just gifted a timeshare (even luckier!) so we went to meet them at their new digs for a weekend by the lake. Lake Tahoe has become a bit of a Springtime family tradition. Also part of the tradition – eating a bag of Tapatio Doritos, first discovered by my sister and I on our 2011 Tahoe trip. This was a quick visit. We drove up, hung out for just over 24 hours, and drove back home. Even though it was a short stay, it was jammed packed with outdoor explorations, feasting, and visits to local attractions. First off, the trees are perfect in North Tahoe. Pictures don’t do them justice. I could sit by the water for hours just listening to the soft currents and chirping birds, and looking at the trees. Sure it was cold out, but I found myself …

wax on, wax off.

Staff meetings at Sticky Art Lab are far from ordinary. This last meeting was no exception. Sure we talk business, but then thanks to boss lady and owner Rachel we get to play and learn a new crafty skill. On the agenda today: batik! Maitland, batik hobbyist and overall cool fella, walked us through the process. Batik is a dyeing technique in which you use wax (in our case paraffin) to make designs on cloth (we used a cotton muslin) and block the dye from coloring those areas. Sounds simple, but getting color to go where you want is a little tricky. First we bathed our cloth in an ash solution. The ash is suppose to help the colors stick to the cloth and prevent bleeding. Ideally, cloth should soak for thirty minutes or more and then dry completely before the next step. Next, we applied melted paraffin to the cloth either using stamps or brushes. Maitland brought some kitchen tools and we had wire and other metal items to play with. My favorite “stamps” …

cooking with daddy, episode 001.

I don’t cook as awesome as my Dad yet, but I definitely picked up a lot of his cooking techniques and am continuing to learn. Every time I visit home, I like to watch him cook, and ask a lot of questions. In this episode of Cooking with Daddy, we’re making savory breakfast – garlicky shrimp, sweet potatoes with maple aioli, and sautéed alugbati (it’s similar to watercress). It’s fancy, but so simple! Baked sweet potatoes with maple aioli Sweet potatoes have become a staple in my parents’ home in the last few months. They are great source of Vitamin A, fiber, and potassium. Heat the oven to 400°F. Peel and slice the sweet potatoes; then, place on a baking sheet. Toss with olive oil, salt, and pepper. Bake for 25 minutes; no need to rotate/flip. While baking, make the dipping sauce. You’ll need about a 1:1 ratio of mayo to maple syrup. For two potatoes, about 1/4c of each mayo and syrup is plenty. Garlic shrimp Get some butter lovin’ melted on a pan (about 3 …

eggcellent eggs!

The Easter egg. Growing up, I never knew how eggs got invited to the party. It was only when my nephews and niece were old enough to go egg hunting that I looked it up. You know, in case they ever asked why I put together an Easter egg hunt, I felt like I should know. I came across a few explanations, but my favorite compared looking for the eggs to looking for Jesus in the tomb. Today I thought I’d share some Easter egg decorating techniques that even the shyest of crafters can do. Plus, all of the supplies are easy to find and you might even have some already. For all of these projects I used hard-boiled eggs. You can also empty out the insides, rinse, and just use the shells if you want your egg art to last longer. Protip: Use room temperature eggs; materials will stick better to the shell. Washi tape + egg Cut out triangles, squares, stripes, whatever you want – and stick. That’s it! Try mixing patterns, shapes, and colors. Kool Aid + …

local love.

West Elm at Bay Street threw a launch party for Local, an in-store pop-up shop featuring local artisans and makers. I was promised DIY stations at this party, so I signed up right away. Plus, a party in a store like West Elm has swanky and stylish written all over it and I’m all over that. Upon arrival, the Local artisan area of the store caught my eye, particularly the mini geometric planters and leather keychains. Richard, the guy behind the West Elm Instagram account, spotted us and even recognized my friend and I from our Instagram accounts. Does that make me Insta-famous? I spent the evening crafting, snacking, picture taking, and window shopping. The beverages and bites were delightful. Hanger 1 was in the house crafting cocktails with premium ingredients. Toast provided a feast of hummus, pita, chicken skewers, bacon wrapped dates, tzatziki, dolmas, and chickpea tartlets. And there wasn’t just one, but two craft stations – a make-your-own vintage map candle holder and a plant-your-own seeds bar. At first glance, I thought these little grassy …