Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Not On The High Street

Have you visited Not On The High Street yet? This super cute online shop is full of great goodies for parties and entertaining. From adorable invitations to gorgeous tea light holders to garlands, all of it is beautiful and some items can even be personalized. Check it out online at

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Tape by the Numbers

I'm always on the lookout for fun and interesting tape to dress up my outgoing mail and gift packages. Rockett St George has this fun numbers tape that comes in 5 designs per tin, including one that looks like a ruler. Love it! Find it at While you're there, check out their fab tableware section.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Unique Party Invitations

Aiiee!! So cute! I love each and every invitation made by Loralee Lewis. They're so whimsical, like they're from a sweeter time. Visit her Etsy shop to see them all. Have fun!

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Donut Tree Tutorial

I always knew things like this adorable donut tree were constructed on styrofoam cones, but it never occurred to me to coat the cone with something tasty like melted chocolate first! For this and other helpful hints for making your own, visit How Does She for a full donut tree tutorial from the gals at One Charming Party.

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Easy Peasy Hostess Gift

Homemade gifts can be an awful lot of work, but not this project from Echoes of Laughter! Click here for this great tutorial on how to make Strawberry Butter. If you have butter, strawberry jam, sugar and a mixer, you're practically done already! Makes a great hostess gift. Visit Echoes of Laughter for all the details.

Friday, November 25, 2011

Pumpkin Pie Milkshake

Just before Thanksgiving, Tidy Mom posted a delicious-looking recipe for a pumpkin pie milkshake. Yum! This takes pie a la mode to an all new level. Even cuter, she posted pie straws she made by twisting strips of pie crust, sprinkling with cinnamon and sugar, then baking. If only they were the kind of straws you could sip through.

This all sounds quite tasty, but I'm a bit lazy. For my first attempt, I think I might just scrape out the filling from my leftover pumpkin pie and blend it with some ice cream. Mmmmm! Either way, it sounds like a delicious way to extend the holiday. And way more fun than my usual pumpkin drink—a pumpkin latte!

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Thanksgiving Bingo

Here's a cute one spotted via Pizzazzerie. Jamie from The Crafting Chicks created this Thanksgiving Bingo game and is offering it for free download. What a great activity, especially for families with kids. It's the patterns and colors that do it for me though! So fun.


Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Warning: This Will Give You a Major Case of the Wants

There are just over 30 shopping days till Christmas. That's plenty, right? But it always helps to have a plan. In case you are stumped on what to get your loved ones—or what to put on your own wishlist—I've spotted the solution: The Gifted Magazine Holiday Gift Guide, a Creature Comforts Blog creation, is awesome!

The gifts? Over 125 of the suggestions are under $30 (!). The style? Utterly gorgeous. You should take a spin through the full online issue. But believe me when I say you'll want this, and this, and this! Click here to head to the Gifted Magazine Holiday Gift Guide.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Vintage Ornament Love

A recent trip to the antiques fair in Alameda has me all fired up for vintage Christmas ornaments. I got some lovely ones for just $1 each! Photos to come. Today I indulged in a little online ornament window shopping via Etsy. Here are a few of my favorites. Be warned—some of my taste runs a little to the "ugly pretty"... {above: Mercury Glass Teapots}

{1950s West German Christmas Ornament (part of a set), Indent Glass Ornaments, Church Ornament}

{1950s Santa and more}

What do you think? Do the nicks and scratches bother you? I think they make certain vintage ornaments even sweeter.

{Honeycomb Red Apples}

Who knew I'd be such a nut for the hand beaded ones? Let's bring this DIY back!

{Hand Beaded Sequined Ornaments, Golden Yellow Mid Century Ornament}

Monday, November 21, 2011

The Best Lemon Bar I've Ever Eaten

My friend Laura and I recently made a delicious visit to Tartine—the popular bakery/cafe that inspired not one but two tasty tomes. Surprisingly, this was my first visit, but it certainly won't be my last! If you're Bay Area based, pick up some of their baked treats to serve at Thanksgiving. Their pumpkin pie looked amazing! If you've had it, please report back!

Tartine keeps a pretty low profile. It has minimal signage, but you'll find it at the corner of 18th and Guerrero, near the famed Bi-Rite Market. The pastry case is full of miniature works of art. The desserts are gorgeous!

Laura and I chowed down meaty sandwiches—sopressata for her, pastrami for me—plus a soft glazed gingerbread and...the best lemon bar I've ever tasted. I had a hard time shaking the memory of it for over a week. I swear, my feet kept trying to lead me back there.

Can't make it out to try their treats in person? Tartine has put out two cookbooks, one with sweet and savory items from the bakery, and one focusing on their bread. I know they're on my Christmas list!

{Photos courtesy of the talented Laura Kasbek}

Friday, November 18, 2011

Super Luxe Advent Calendar

Today I popped into Gump's, an amazing upscale store in downtown San Francisco. I wanted to see what they had to offer in the way of Christmas ornaments. Sadly, what they offered came in at $30 per ornament (but pretty!). However, if I do get in the mood to throw some big dosh around there, I've got my eye on this Nutcracker Advent Calendar. Don't be fooled by this picture—the real deal is lushly colored and gorgeous! The individual boxes in the calendar are a good size for tucking in jewelry, mini cupcakes, chocolates, candy, and all sorts of little goodies.

Is an advent calendar a tradition for you? What do you like to put in it?

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Cake Stand Love: Birthday Edition

Blurg, so sleepy! I've had too much birthday fun (yes, the 16th was my birthday!). Consequently, as I'm writing this late at night and need some sleep I'll make this one quick!

Isn't this cake stand great?! I have loads of cake stands in my collection, but not one like this. I dig its rustic vibe. So simple and sweet. Find it online at Rain Collection.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

DIY Sequin Ornaments

I found some lovely vintage ornaments last week at the monthly antiques fair. I think they kicked off an ornament obsession—I've been thinking about them constantly! Feeding my habit today is this terrific tutorial from Pugly Pixel. She shows us how to combine sequins and pins to make gorgeous globes that are perfect for trimming the tree. I love her color choices! Check out the tutorial after the link.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Vintage Confections

Oooh, I love this filigree candy from Vintage Confections These hard candy lollipops would make great table numbers, save the dates, or celebrate the age of a very special birthday boy or girl! They also come in letters. So gorgeous! Find them online at Vintage Confections.

{Spotted via Pizzazzerie}

Friday, November 11, 2011

Edible DIY Glitter

Best idea I've seen all day? Liz from Say Yes To Hoboken teaches us how to make edible sparkling glitter at home. Now, this glitter is salty. I'll definitely have to give this technique a try with sugar in the hope of making my cupcakes sparkle. Either way it's pretty neat! Click here for the full tutorial from Liz.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Gratitude Garland

Here's a cute tutorial over at Makes and Takes by Alanna of The Craft Nest. Alanna has a tradition in her home—each day in November her family writes down what they are thankful for on pretty cards hung in a garland of lovely little envelopes. What a nice project to bring a little gratitude into the house every day! Visit Makes and Takes for the full tutorial.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Happy Haul-idays!

Hooray! It's Happy Haulidays again! For those who missed it last year, the fabulous Chronicle Books hosts the best giveaway of the season. They're offering up a holiday prize pack of awesome books, valued up to $500. To enter, I just need to post my wish list of must-read CB titles here on Host-It Notes. The best part?! If by some sweet chance I win the prize, a reader who comments on this here post will also win their holiday haul! Plus, something we can all feel good about—Chronicle Books will even donate $500 in books to a non-profit. So come on, leave a comment and let's get in it to win it!

"Dear Santa, please bring me..."

Cath Kidston Jam Jar Kit by Cath Kidston ($14.95) Handmade Weddings By Sabrina Moyle, Eunice Moyle, Shana Faust, Joseph De Leo ($24.95)

Amy Butler's Style Stitches by Amy Butler, David Butler ($29.95)

Curiosities: Vintage-Inspired Adornments for Gifts and Correspondence($24.95)

Silhouette Art by Vana Chupp ($18.95)

French General: Party Paperie by Kaari Meng ($14.95)

Witch Craft by Margaret McGuire and Alicia Kachmar ($14.95)

Sublime Stitching Craft Pad by Jenny Hart ($12.95)

Sukie Iron-On Craft Pad by Darrell Gibbs and Julia Harding ($14.95)

Big Vegan by Robin Asbell ($29.95)

Creative, Inc. by Meg Mateo Ilasco and Joy Deangdeelert Cho ($16.95)

Fast, Fresh & Green by Susie Middleton ($24.95)

Field Guide to Produce by Aliza Green ($15.95)

Blackbird Bakery Gluten-Free by Karen Morgan ($24.95)

Paper + Craft by Minhee and Truman Cho ($19.95)

Tartine Bread by Chad Robertson ($40.00)

Reprodepot Pattern Book by Djerba Goldfinger, Grace Bonney, Mollie Green ($24.95)

Cake Pops Kit by Bakerella ($19.95)

Pretty Pantry Gifts by Tara Duggan ($19.95)

The Pillow Book by Shannon Okey ($24.95)

Amy Butler's In Stitches by Amy Butler, Colin McGuire ($24.95)

Whoopie Pies by Sarah Billingsley ($16.95)

Cake Simple by Christie Matheson ($19.95)

Instant Iron-Ons by Julia Rothman ($14.95)

Leave a comment on the off chance we might both win, and good luck to us both!

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

My Pretty New Tote

I'm so excited! My girlfriends came for a visit this past weekend to celebrate my 30th birthday. They gave me some great crafty goodies (more on that later—when I get a chance to use them!). The big giftie though was a brand new mustard-colored Jo Totes camera bag!! Love love love!

Mine's the Rose style in Marigold, which comes with a darling houndstooth lining. The cool part about it is that I can carry my camera around safely and still look cute! It has nifty fabric inserts that attach with velcro. You can fix them wherever you want where to keep your camera stable and cushioned. Once my camera is tucked in I have plenty of room for lenses, wallet, phone and whatever I need to stash. Thank you, ladies!!! I love it.

Monday, November 7, 2011

When Grown-Ups Play With Clay

It all started with just one tutorial I wanted to show you. What followed was time lost down the rabbit hole as I scrolled through page after page of the fabulous blog Craftberry Bush. The blogging diva behind this site has loads of creative tutorials to share. First I wanted to show you this nifty clay antler she made—but I quickly got caught up in the magic of her clay mushrooms and flowers. The best part is she has tutorials for each! And it's not just clay. I'm in love with her place settings. Craftberry Bush is a gem. I can't wait to read more!

{Spotted via Centsational Girl}

Friday, November 4, 2011

A Special Welcome for Guests

I called my blog Host-It Notes, so it probably goes without saying that I love hosting guests. Some of my very best friends are coming to visit today and I couldn't be more excited! I thought I'd make them a fun little treat to welcome them to my home. I decided to sew each of my ladies their own tote bag, with a matching water cozy to boot. Then I filled the bags with a few basics: chips, sweet snacks and gum. Each person also gets the all important lint roller. My husband and I have 3 cats and not everyone has the fur tolerance we do.

Consider a welcome bag the next time you have friends or family in from out of town. Provide our guests with snacks and water so they don't have to ask for a nibble or sip. Other fun items could include a local map, a scarf or umbrella (living in San Francisco my thoughts naturally turn to rain), or some locally themed food or souvenirs.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Curing Your Pattern Identification Disorder

Amy Atlas just did us all a favor. She's gathered up a number of classic and iconic patterns and created a simple guide for identifying each one (Hello, Zebra!). I played a game with it, seeing which patterns I could correctly guess before reading their names (it's nice to finally put a face to Chinoiserie!). Hopefully thanks to this I'll be spouting off the correct names of patterns I use in future crafts, creations, and parties! I also saw a few designs in there that have me scheming for my next event. Check it out if you want to brush up on your patterns as well: Amy Atlas' Pattern Board For Design Styling.

(Zebra Pattern from Bootkidz)

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Bunting Tablecloth DIY

For me, some trends are getting a little played out. For example, I'm good with taking a break from tissue poms for now. Owls are still cute, but I may tire of them eventually. But bunting? I could hang bunting all day! Little flags are just so festive! In that spirit, here's a project I spotted over the summer that's been lurking in my "to blog about" pile ever since. The Sweetest Occasion posted this great DIY project by Jenny from Hank + Hunt. It's an easy-to-make tablecloth created with some fabric paint and a little finesse. Click here to head to the tutorial!


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