Mar 31, 2014

Rustic Fall Wedding Cakes

Rustic fall wedding cakes are the perfect compliment to a no-nonsense, let's kick off our uncomfortable new shoes, toast our health and happiness with ice-cold champagne, dine on chicken fingers and honey baked ham, and dance till the sun comes up type of country style wedding reception. "Naked" wedding cakes, those without the traditional top coat of fondant or buttercream look wild, western, daring and delicious. The names Kyle + Molly "carved" into the side of this tree trunk style cake - woodsy and wonderful!

rustic wedding cake ideas
fall wedding cake with fruit
rustic style wedding cake
rustic chocolate wedding cake
rustic wedding cake stand

Downloadable Chalkboard Wedding Signs

A very affordable way to enjoy chalkboard wedding signs at your reception - instant downloads! Regrettably as I update this in the fall of 2017, this shop is no longer on Etsy. These were available immediately upon purchase and included 8" x 10", 11" x 14", and 16" x 20" JPG files. All of this for just $2.00 each. "Every love story is beautiful, but ours is my favorite" still describes how I feel about the blue-eyed Italian American man I married so many years ago. The sign "Today two families become one" suggests a more friendly and informal way of seating guests than in the past. Framed in antique white frames, these downloadable chalkboard wedding signs would be elegant and entertaining - as well as a great money saving wedding idea.

printable chalkboard sign
chalkboard wedding sign
chalkboard wedding reception sign
chalkboard dessert sign
downloadable chalkboard wedding sign

Mar 30, 2014

Beach Wedding Table Settings

What do all of these beach wedding table settings have in common? Beautiful aqua blue and white. I would love to recreate the beach themed table (at bottom) that looks like a great place to linger over my pan seared filet of salmon and garlic whipped potatoes. A closer look reveals an aqua blue table cloth, brown placemats, an unfinished burlap table runner, plain white china and small tea lights, starfish and sea shells courtesy of your local craft store. You'll spend the most on the round, braided polyester/jute placements I found today at Kohl's for $7.99 each, buy one get one half price.

aqua and white table setting
beach themed weddings 

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Mar 29, 2014

Succulent Wedding Theme

Succulent wedding theme - you'll love the color and texture of these small green succulents known as sempervivum which literally means "live forever." They blend well with other flowers but are charming enough to stand alone in aisle decorations, bouquets, boutonnieres and centerpieces. I'm crazy about "table 4" nestled between the petals of a multi-layered green succulent, known as hens and chicks. Simple terra cotta pots wrapped in burlap make a variety of small potted succulents wrapped in burlap look chic and ready for gift-giving. After the hugs and handshakes are all over, your guests can place these little sun loving succulents into the ground, a pot or even an old coffee can.

succulent wedding place card
succulent wedding centerpiece
succulent wedding favors
succulent aisle decorations
rustic ring bearer ideas
succulent wedding bouquet
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Mar 18, 2014

Summer Bridal Shower Ideas

These summer bridal shower ideas are colorful, festive and fun. My favorite is the photo at bottom with freshly picked pansies in small terra cotta pots and simple white luncheon plates like those you find at any thrift store. In other words, it doesn't have to be expensive to look that way. Add to that fresh summer fruit - purple grapes, strawberries, papaya, cantaloupe and honeydew melon - cut in bite sized chunks and made into fresh fruit kabobs that are light and luxurious. My friends feel right at home these sweet little details. They want to be pampered and in the middle of July, and I'm happy to oblige.

spring bridal shower
outdoor bridal shower
pink and green bridal shower theme
summer bridal shower ideas
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Mar 17, 2014

Vintage Tin Centerpieces

Vintage tin centerpieces bring old-fashioned charm to a spring or summer bridal shower, tea or outdoor reception. You don't have to drive all over town, in and out of dusty old junk and antique malls, paying $10 for a tin your great grandma purchased for just ten cents. There are beautifully designed reproductions available everywhere with retro style lettering and designs that would look amazing with pale garden roses, creamy dahlias and delicate Queen Anne’s lace. Make sure old and new tins are watertight before filling with flowers, otherwise small plastic bags - well hidden - will serve nicely as liners to keep flowers fresh.

craspedia wedding centerpiece
vintage style centerpiece 

vintage tin centerpieces
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Mar 12, 2014

Tea Themed Party Favors

Tea themed party favors - here is one of my favorites courtesy of Beau Coup. This heart shaped tea infuser - at slightly less than three dollars - opens easily by squeezing the handle. Insert fresh chamomile or green tea leaves and enjoy a hot and healthy alternative to coffee that will soothe your nerves and refresh your soul. We all know that tea contains cancer fighting antioxidants. Drinking green tea also reduces the risk of diabetes, as well as neurological diseases such as Alzheimer's and Parkinson's disease? So many reasons to drink it every day and serve it to the ones you love most.

Chalkboard Bridal Shower Invitations

Chalkboard bridal shower invitations - these are available from Zazzle in 5 x 7" (portrait) or 7 x 5" (landscape) with playful vintage chalkboard script on 50% recycled paper with a smooth matte finish. Using recycled paper makes me feel good about doing anything - however small - to save this beautiful green planet. At a little over $2.00 each, these custom chalkboard invitations come in twenty unique paper types and colors and include standard white envelopes. Order now and receive a 15% discount.

Mar 5, 2014

Pink Bridal Shower Theme

I'm almost always obsessed with a pink bridal shower theme - no matter what time of day or what time of year. The color pink symbolizes love, understanding, and nurturing. Togetherness. I want that at every birthday, baby and bridal shower I attend with those who love me best. My girls, my old friends and new, my confidants. That's why I want fragrant, freshly picked garden roses and pale pink tulips in glass goblets and vintage style tins. Creamy white, pink and deep red roses arranged on a sterling silver cupcake stand. A folded pink pinwheel makes a whimsical placemat and refreshing pink mimosas (equal parts of champagne and pink grapefruit juice), will make my friends wish this day would never end.

pink bridal shower ideas
tea party theme bridal shower
pink bridal shower theme
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Mar 4, 2014

Rustic Dessert Table Ideas

Rustic dessert table ideas - you don't need a weathered brick wall or aged wine barrels to pull it off, but it certainly helps to create the vibe. What most of these displays have in common is lots of natural wood (above, below and behind) such as wooden crates, walnut tables and even a repurposed ladder decorated with little white lights. vintage suitcases with their trademark brown stripes and molded plastic handles make an attractive display for cupcakes as well as an antique Coca Cola crate turned on its side (at bottom).

fall wedding dessert table
rustic wedding dessert table
rustic wedding dessert idea
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Mar 3, 2014

Red Velvet Sweetheart Cupcakes

These decadent and delicious red velvet cupcakes - courtesy of Better Homes and Gardens - were offered up for Valentine's Day, but why not serve them as a lower fat and less calorie laden alternative to buttercream frosted wedding cakes and cupcakes?  Most sugary store-bought icing (Betty Crocker and Pillsbury) have about 150 calories for every 2 tablespoons, and gobbles up 10% of your daily allowance of fat.  Ouch.  Powdered sugar, on the other hand, has about 31 calories per tablespoon and has all the fun without the fat.  Heart-shaped cake stencils make these cupcakes easy to recreate with their romantic red hearts and lovely light dusting of confectioners' sugar.  So easy and elegant - you can make them in just over an hour!

red velvet cupcake recipe 

  • 3 eggs
  • 3/4 c butter
  • 3 c all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoon unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 1/4 c sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 T red food coloring                   
  • 1 1/2 c buttermilk
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon vinegar
  • Chocolate heart-shaped cookies (optional)
  • Powdered sugar 
1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Let eggs and butter come to room temperature for about 30 minutes. Line cupcake pans with paper liners; set aside. 

2.  In medium bowl combine the cocoa powder, flour and 3/4 tsp. salt; set aside. In large mixing bowl beat butter on medium-high 30 seconds. Add sugar and vanilla to butter mixture, beat until combined. One at a time, add eggs; mixing well.  Add food coloring.

3.  Alternately add flour mixture and then buttermilk to egg mixture; beat on low until combined. Stir together baking soda and vinegar and add to batter.

4.  Spoon batter into prepared cupcake pans, filling each about two-thirds full. Bake 15 to 17 minutes and cool on wire rack for 5 minutes. Remove from pans. Using a heart stencil, dust the top of each cupcake with powdered sugar.  Makes 28 red velvet cupcakes.

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Mar 2, 2014

Engraved Wedding Ring Holders

These very unique engraved wedding ring holders are handcrafted out of oak and can be drilled with a small hole at back for hanging on the wall, at your request. These sweet love birds sitting on a branch are engraved into a golden oak dish that measures - 5.5 inches in diameter - that is protected with a light coat of beeswax and will easily fit in the palms of your ring bearer's little hands. These rustic wooden ring holders ship from Latvia, a relatively small Baltic state near Russia, that is slightly smaller than state of Oklahoma and sells for $35 (plus an additional $8.00 shipping to me here in Virginia). Oak wood has been prized since the Middle Ages for its strength and the beauty of its grain. This is one sweet and sentimental keepsake that will quickly become a cherished heirloom.