Monday, October 31, 2011

Home Decor: Photo On Canvas

Now that the wedding is behind us, I’ve been able to focus more of my attention on decorating our apartment. We’ve been in the same building for 2+ years, yet most of the walls remain bare. It’s hard to commit!We’re pretty much obsessed with our wedding pictures so we wanted to get some of them printed to hang on the walls. Close friends of ours had one of their wedding pictures printed on a canvas and we LOVED the way it looked.When Easy Canvas Prints contacted me to try their online tool for uploading and printing a photo on canvas I jumped at the chance! The process of setting up my print was incredibly simple: Choose a photo, pick a size, upload your image, choose a boarder and you’re basically done!Some of the features that I was really surprised to see was that you could actually choose to upload a photo from Facebook, because let’s face it, sometimes your friends take rocking pictures with you in it and you just can’t count on them to email it to you. I also liked that there was a quality image check on the picture you uploaded. This way you don’t have to worry about your picture turning out pixelated or blurry.

The hardest part of the entire process was selecting a picture. The rest was a snap. I love the way it turned out! If you are interested in your own canvas print, you’re in luck! I’m giving away $20 worth of gift cards to use on the Easy Canvas Prints site.

First person to answer the following questions wins! All of these have been covered on the blog in recent months:

- Ginger just had a birthday. How old did she turn?
- Hello Cupcake LLC just celebrated a special occasion. What was it?
- I’m the Blog Editor for what event planning company?

To win, leave your answers in the comment section along with your email.

*The canvas shown was used as a product review for Easy Canvas Prints...but if you follow the blog, you know that I only do reviews for companies and products I can truly get behind…..not what I can get for free.

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Happy Halloween!

Did anyone catch the adorable doggy face on the front of the Bay Area section of the SF Chronicle this morning?

Yesterday was the Howl-A-Week pet costume contest that Ginger won for “Most likely to make your fur stand on end” last year.

People really stepped up their game this year!!!! Needless to say, Ginger’s costume “Dog-zilla” complete with Godzilla theme song playing as we walked down the green carpet still wasn’t enough to take it!Never the less, the event was a lot of fun. Lots to see, eat and drink and all to raise money for a cause that’s truly near and dear to my heart: The SF SPCA.

Friday, October 28, 2011

Cheers to Us

Yesterday, I was walking with a dear friend of mine, just chatting, when she unknowingly paid me a huge complement that got me thinking late in to the night. She said:

“You’re so good at celebrating people.”

Think about it. Isn’t that a nice complement to receive? That I value and celebrate the people and friends in my life, that it’s appreciated, that it doesn’t go unnoticed. I love to celebrate the occasions in my life* and those around me. No matter how big or small.

Seriously, take a moment, think of those who encourage and celebrate you. Let them know and make more time in your own life to celebrate the achievements of those around you! Life is too short to do anything but celebrate it.

In Case You Missed It:
I also write for A Savvy Event – be sure to check out my posts from this week:

A season Less Real Wedding
Savvy’s Handpicked Vendor: Occasional Cakes
Fall in Love with Pumpkins

*Ummm hello, 100th Etsy Sale anyone….or the fact that I still get excited about half birthdays, mine of which is a little over a week away. Mark your calendars for November 9th! We’ll celebrate together!

Image By: Jessamyn Harris from My Wedding

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Halloween Costume 2.0

Happy (almost) Halloween!

You know I love any legitimate excuse to dress Ginger up in costume. I knew it would be hard to top last year’s award winning costume. I racked my brain for ideas as to what she should be: Alligator, Panda Bear, Sushi Roll and then I finally settled on her going as a Dinosaur! T-Rex actually.I used the shark costume I made her last year as a pattern.I think it came out pretty cute. I don’t think it blows away her shark costume but never the less, it’s a one of a kind!

What do you think? Will you be dressing up your pet for Halloween this year?

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Weekend Get-a-way: SLO

Last month I surprised Christoph with a quick trip to San Luis Obispo for his birthday. I picked SLO because I’m very familiar with the area as my Mom lived there for a number of years and I almost went to college at Cal Poly.

I truly love it there and was happy to take a quick family trip back to the area. If you’re looking for a quick get-a-way from the Bay Area or even the LA area, San Luis Obispo is a great option (it’s halfway between SF and LA).

This was our itinerary (most of which I would highly recommend you check out):

Visit:
Avila Beach: We had a picnic on this dog friendly beach which sounds awesome until you factor in the eating of sand and infestation of bees (fail)

Stay:
Petit Solei: We stayed at this lovely B&B that allowed dogs and provided a fun wine happy hour and a delicious breakfast

Eat:
Madonna Inn: I couldn’t take a trip to SLO without a stop to the Madonna Inn. We had dinner in their over the top, strait from the 70’s restaurant. In spite of the pink leather booths (see pic below) the food was good and the atmosphere made it feel like a time warp back to the 70’s complete with live band and elderly couples dancing their feet off.

Activity:
Mineral springs at the Sycamore: Make a reservation for a private soak in the mineral springs. It’s actually quite romantic, feel free to bring your own champagne and enjoy in the privacy of your own mineral spring.

It’s pretty hard to go wrong with a visit to the central coast! If you decide to go and want more suggestions, let me know, I left out a lot of other options (wine tasting, apple picking, downtown SLO) because we were a bit restricted on time.

Image: Madonna Inn (in all its tacky glory)

Monday, October 24, 2011

Custom Work

A few weeks back I was contacted by a college girlfriend who is planning a baby shower for her sister. She was looking to throw a Noah’s Ark theme shower and asked if I could come up with an invitation.I’m thrilled with the end result and loved having the opportunity to create a custom invitation to work with her theme. These are currently available in my Etsy shop.

If you’d like to work together on a custom invitation, feel free to drop me a line!

P.S.: In other news, sad day in our house as our little Ginger Bear hurt her tootsie at the park on Sunday. All I can say is there was blood and something sticking out of her paw that shouldn’t have been. Thank goodness Christoph was there. She’ll be totally fine but she’s the saddest little thing you ever did see.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Fashionable Finds for a Fraction of the Price

Look what just happened across my inbox:Ok, now back to the blog post.

Like so many other women, I love shoes. See what I mean?I have expensive taste but I don’t like to spend a fortune on shoes and clothing. I’m truly a bargain hunter. Which is why I love Jeremy’s Department store. Some of you may already know the deals that are within the walls of Jeremy’s but for those of you that are just hearing of this, prepare to be blown away.You’ll find everything from high end fashions like Alexander Wang, Lanvin, Chanel, Christian Louboutin, Vince, Celine, Helmut Lang to stores you may frequent like Anthropologie, Urban Outfitters and more.On Saturday, Christoph and I made an impromptu stop because we were in the neighborhood. I found these amazing Anthropologie wedges that are currently selling for $168 for a steal price of $49.

Amazing find right? So what do you think? Will you be heading to Jeremy’s in the near future?

Friday, October 21, 2011

Weekend Wear: Back to Basics

Happy Friday friends! I hope your week was a success. I was busy as usual. But what else is new?

My weekend plans should be pretty low key. When I do make it out of the house, I’m going to stick with some comfortable basics. You can’t go wrong with a gray shirt and blue jeans! For this weekend, tonight I’m working on some Hello Cupcake projects, tomorrow I’m headed up to Fairfax for work (any recommendations for shops or restaurants) and then dinner out with my love. Sunday. Oh Sunday how I look forward to seeing you. I am going to sleep in as long as possible and catch up on my reading (US weekly of course!).

Whatever you’re up to this weekend, I hope you enjoy it!

In Case You Missed It:
I also write for A Savvy Event – be sure to check out my posts from this week:
Cheers!
Style Unveiled: Wedding of David & Molly
Color Your Party

*Where to Find Clothing Shown Above: HERE

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Just Breathe

As my wedding day drew nearer I was surrounded by more and more loved ones who had made the trip to be a part of our wedding. It was amazing. But at the same time, a moment alone of peace, quiet and solitude was cherished.

I was in the bedroom alone - alone in that it was just me, our wedding photographer and videographer. No one was talking. I had read over my vows, been zipped into my dress, earrings on, makeup done perfectly and there was nothing left to do besides walk down the aisle with my Dad to meet my future husband. I felt a complete sense of calmness in all the excitement that was surrounding me and the future that lay ahead.

If you’re a bride to be, remember to cherish this moment.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

100 Sales Later

I wish I could celebrate my 100th Etsy sale every weekend. It was that fun.First, just a quick tip on how I like to prepare for having a large group of people over. I lay out the dishware I want to use, determine what type of food is going to be served and I make a note so it’s clear where things go once they are ready. A little over the top? Maybe. But I makes it so I don’t forget to pick things up at the grocery store and……The end result: An easy to assemble party and Christoph knows what I have in mind and how he can help me to put food out just before the party. Winning!Now, back to the party! We had a great turnout! Friends came from as far as LA to join in the festivities. I felt extremely supported by my friends and loved ones. My mother in law who has watched the business grow over the years even picked up a cake from Schuberts Bakery (a SF fav.)! We celebrated into the wee hours of the AM with champagne toasts and catching up with old friends. It was wonderful.

Thank you for all of your support throughout the years and if you’re new to Hello Cupcake, thank you for being here. I am grateful to have the opportunity that I do and to be able to do what I love.

P.S.- The winner of my stationery give-a-way was Pamela. Congrats Pamela!!!!

Monday, October 17, 2011

Friday, October 14, 2011

Feels Like Sunshine

Happy Friday dear friends! Thank you for the support on the exciting news I shared yesterday!

Hope your week was a success. My week = amazing. My best friend had a healthy baby boy on Wednesday :) :) :)!!!!! And I’m thrilled to pieces about my weekend plans which include a soccer game, friends who will be visiting from out of town and……….my 100th Etsy Sale Party which is tomorrow! I’ll be sure to post some pics next week.

In Case You Missed It:
I also write for A Savvy Event – be sure to check out my posts from the past week:
Engagement Pictures – Not Engaging in Stress
Style Me Pretty: Wedding of Jorge and Marilu
Meet Stacy
The Ombre Effect

PS: Image design and credit = Hello Cupcake LLC (aka yours truly!)

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Opportunity

I never would have imagined that planning my wedding would open doors. It goes without saying that I was a VERY hands on bride. I was connected to just about every single detail leading up to the day. Where I was finally able to let go, sit back, ride it out and enjoy the moment was on the actual day of my wedding.

I had hired an amazing event planning company A Savvy Event and I knew that I had nothing to worry about. That they would do a great job making my wedding run smoothly and take care of everything without a hitch. They did.

Throughout the process, I worked very closely with the owner of the company, Kelly. Our meeting always ended with what I would consider an idea explosion. We had similar taste, our visions were always on track with one another and she is the quintessence of taste, class, style and design.

Since the wedding, we’ve remained in close contact and she started referring her brides to me to work on custom projects for their weddings. Everything from wedding programs to custom designed décor pieces. It has been a blast.

Recently, I’ve joined the A Savvy Event team as their blog writer and Creative Director. I'm thrilled to work alongside such a talented team of individuals.

However, I am still working full time at my other job at a nonprofit which I also love. For the past few weeks my life has been about finding a balance and I think I’ve found it. I make time for A Savvy Event blogging in the early mornings by waking up extra early, sitting in my home office with a cup of coffee and working. It has actually been quite enjoyable!

I make time for Hello Cupcake and custom wedding projects in the evenings. I’m in project mode from around 6 PM to 11 PM (ok…oftentimes I’m actually working till 1 AM) but getting things done. While it’s tiring at times, the work I do for Hello Cupcake and A Savvy Event truly is enjoyable for me. There is a quote that comes to mind “If you love what you do, you'll never work another day in your life”. I think this rings true here. The wedding industry is something that I love, that I’m happy I will get to be a part of long after my own wedding.

Monday, October 10, 2011

October Bride: Custom Wedding Paper

Besides actually being married, one of my favorite changes since our wedding is that I’ve had more time to work with brides on creating custom paper products for their own wedding. I recently had the pleasure of working with an October bride to come up with programs, drink signs and a print for her guest book.For the program, the bride wanted a very classic and subtle look. I came up with this double sided and flat print design for her. This is also available in my Etsy shop.Her signature wedding drink was the bellini which is a mixture of sparkling wine and peach purée drink served in a champagne glass. Custom drink signs are also available in my Etsy shop.Lastly, I made a sign to be placed by her unique guest book. She ordered this elephant from Anthropologie and had her guests sign it and plans to hang it on the wall now that the wedding is over.

I truly am loving this shift of being able to work on weddings that are not my own!

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Fleet Week 2011

If you live within a 25 mile radius of San Francisco then you already knew that this past weekend was Fleet week. To celebrate the occasion, my Daddy-O flew into town. He loves all things aviation and is actually a glider pilot himself. We got up bright and early Saturday AM to avoid the crowds and take a navy ship tour. The tour was awesome. To see all the equipment and vehicles up close was a little overwhelming.The men and women who operate the equipment were on hand to answer questions and explain what they’re used for. I’m so thankful for the work they do.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Rain, Rain.

Not sure where you live, but here in San Francisco it has been coming down! I thought I would whip up a fun little picture to brighten your mood in case you’ve got the bad weather blues. Enjoy!

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Wedding Decor: How To

It’s shocking to learn just how many tables you have to rent for a wedding – I’m not just talking about dinner tables. You’ll need a gift table, dessert table, escort card table, table for the DJ, the list goes on and on.I’m not much of a tablecloth person. I prefer the nicer, natural wood tables then just dressing it up. For our dessert and coffee table, I hand dyed strips of muslin fabric! I must have bought around 8 yards of fabric (muslin is cheap). Tear it into strips (up to you how thick you want them). I wanted a mix of widths. Soak the fabric in water to get it completely wet (so it absorbs the dye evenly)Follow the dying directions on the dye packaging. To get the different shades of color, I dyed the fabric in batches using the same dye water but just adding more water from the sink to dilute the mix.The end result: beautiful, one of a kind fabric that you can use in many different ways.Now that the wedding is over, my Mom is actually in the process of making us a wedding quilt from the hand dyed muslin. How special is that! I can’t wait to see it!

Monday, October 3, 2011

My Mom's Talent

Growing up, crafting with my Mom was one of my most favorite memories. We’d sit at the kitchen table, paint mini clay houses for our Christmas town, make cards with glitter, doilies and stamps and she hand made just about every one of my Halloween costumes.It comes as no surprise to me that my creative side comes from my Mom. She still loves to create and craft and for the last several years she has been sewing quilts.Her work is absolutely gorgeous, creative and intricate. Quilting requires a patience that is lost on me.I knew that she had quite a collection of quilts she had made but when she started pulling them out of the closet to show me, my jaw just about hit the floor.She has a quilt(s) made for every holiday, every occasion and every season. Where to start photographing!Since she has such an extensive collection, I decided to break up the posts. I think I will do a post on her work every few months to showcase the quilts of the current season.

For now, I just snapped a few of my favorites. Beautiful aren’t they? She’s so talented.