Monday, January 30, 2012

Little Love Notes

Gorgeous printables here, people! I spotted these over at One Charming Party. What I love about them is they are perfect for any day, not just Valentine's. This is the kind of note to tuck in with a bouquet for a friend or loved one, or top a package you've put together for someone who is feeling down. "I love you because..." is something everyone wants to know the answer to! And the matching envelope is adorable. The printables are designed by Becca of Cake. and Michele of Cakewalk Baking. Love!

Major Valentine's Day Card Inspiration

If you're shopping for sweet cards for Valentine's Day—or just in search for some insanely great ideas—be sure to click through this lovely Valentine's Day guide from Discover Paper. It's nothing but V-day paper and card goodness, and you'll adore it all.

I particularly love the section on crafty cards (p. 55). It's chock full of great ideas you can put a twist on for your own cards. Equally great? Plenty of links to free printables start here!

Friday, January 27, 2012

A Mini Baby Shower in Aqua and Red

This week I helped plan a mini baby shower. I call it mini because the mother-to-be works in an office full of tech guys and has a proper shower planned in the coming weeks. But I couldn't let her slip away to maternity leave without at least a little fanfare, could I?

To bring a bit of festivity to the day I fired up my sewing machine and created a fabric garland, which I anchored with two fabric covered oatmeal containers. I sewed a placemat of red chevron stripe to lay below the garland.

As part of my gift I sewed baby bowties onto little white onesies. That'll be one dapper little man when he arrives! But who cares about all that when there is: MOCHI!

This is no ordinary mochi. I ordered it from Simply Mochi, though there's nothing simple about it. For those who are new to mochi, it's a Japanese sweet made of glutinous rice pounded into a paste and shaped. When filled with something sweet it's called daifuku. Linda at Simply Mochi in San Francisco makes scrumptious mochi/daifuku in AMAZING flavors. Get a load of this mochi menu:

Oreo Cheesecake

Choconuts

S'mores

Nutella

Salted Caramel

PB&J

Pumpkin Cheesecake

Chocolate Mint

And that's just to name a few! We tasted Strawberry Cheesecake, Lemon Curd, Chocolate, and Chocolate Strawberry and each one was off the charts delicious. The Cheesecake and Lemon Curd flavors were super creamy, the chocolate had a rich frosting-like filling, and the Choco-Strawberry had a full fresh strawberry surrounded by a thin chocolate with the consistency of a liquor. I would recommend them all—particularly the lemon curd and strawberry cheesecake. Every mochi is handmade that day, and which means the flavors are super fresh.

Finally, we raised a toast to the new mom (guests only of course!). Best of luck to her in her new role as mother!

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Matchstick Candles

I love this crafty take on birthday candles. Plain candles and a dollop of red beeswax come together to create burnable "matchstick" candles. There's a simple elegance to them that most birthday candles lack. Find the tutorial here at Poppytalk.


Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Beautiful Book Plate Printable

I'm a complete book hound. My dream is to have a library with floor to ceiling shelves devoted only to books, with a long rolling ladder that slides up and down the room. But really, isn't that everyone's dream. For now I'll have to settle for a dapper looking library collection, which I can have thanks to this lovely downloadable book plate designed by Erin of BerinMade. Visit Poppytalk for the download of either this "Ex Libris" book plate or a "This Book Belongs To" version. Gussy it up with a pretty paper background and insert it into your books. Looking good!

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Cake Stand Love: Pretty in Pink

Pink Round Cake Stand ($75)

Have you stopped by Sweet & Saucy Supply lately? Ever a great party supply stop, this online shop frequently stocks any number of gorgeous cake stands. For me these three pastel pinks are the styles that take the cake.

Pink 10" Square Glass Stand ($115)

8" Square Pink Glass Cake Stand ($55)

Not a pink fan? Click here to see the rest of their colors and designs.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Valentine's Day Printable from Love vs. Design

Another great free printable from Love vs. Design—some of the most talented folks out there right now. I love their style! This one's a terrific Valentine's day card—plus some coupons if that's your bag—all free and ready for you to give to your one true love (or at least your one-of-many true like)! Download now.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Another Airmail Valentine

Here's another airmail valentine you'll love. This pretty little printable is free to download from Wonder Forest. While there, be sure to check out more of creator Dana's tutorials—especially this adorable heart favor box. You'll be ready for Valentine's Day in no time!

Friday, January 20, 2012

Paper Airplane Love Note

Oh goodness! You'll love this! Head to Country Living now to check out designer Cathe Holden's printable stationery made up in an airmail-meets-paper-airplane design. Just gorgeous! Happy Valentine's mailing!

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Best Balloons Ever

You are going to flip out when you see these balloons (oh wait, you just did!) by designer Hector Serrano. Rhino, koala, pig, bear, tiger, bird...how can you resist these guys? Perfect for a kids party with an animal theme when you don't want to sell out to that Madagascar film. I kid! But seriously, jungle baby showers, childrens parties and more will benefit from these beautiful balloons. The balloons come with decorative paper sculpture features to fold and stick on for the final look. Find them at ZGallerie for just $12.95: Air Heads by Hector Serrano.

Image: Hector Serrano

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Giveaway Winner: All Cakes Considered

Congratulations to our randomly chosen giveaway winner, Vicki Davis! Vicki, you've won a copy of All Cakes Considered! Please send me an email at hostess@host-itnotes.com to claim your prize, and thank you everyone who entered!

Cake Stand Love: Color Blast!

Feast your eyes on this gorgeous acrylic cake stand! It comes with a vibrant dome lid and is BPA free. Click here to find it at Green With Envy.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Pies and Printables

In my web ramblings I stumbled on this fantastic hand pie recipe and printable package combo from Twig and Thistle. Now you can bake up your own fruit hand pies then pack them in an adorable box! Makes a great party favor or Valentine's Day treat. Click here to get started.

Monday, January 16, 2012

Win a Copy of ALL CAKES CONSIDERED

Don't forget, we're having a giveaway! Enter after the link.


A Party Game With A Punch

If this is any indication, the days of Pin the Tail on the Donkey are over. This Punch Box game is a fun new trend hitting kids parties. Celebrate The Big & Small has a colorful candy party featuring this pretty punch box. Kids correctly answered trivia questions to win punches and reveal prizes. Click here for more details. {Spotted via Babble.com}

Friday, January 13, 2012

Friday Giveaway: All Cakes Considered

One of my New Year's resolutions is to clear out some of the clutter in my house. Which includes clearing out my prize shelf! Here's a nice little goodie for today's giveaway: a copy of All Cakes Considered. Cakes? Delicious!!

Wanna win? Just leave a comment below, telling me what dessert you like to eat on your birthday! Contest closes Tuesday Jan. 17th and I'll announce the randomly selected winner the next day. Good luck!

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Ice Cream Cone Cupcakes

This is cupcakery at its cutest! Check out this great project from My Cake School. Line up your cupcakes and decorate them right and you've got the cutest little "ice cream" cake! Click here for the full tutorial.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Beautiful and Free Thank You Cards

Love vs. Design has a lovely set of free thank you cards in a soft pink sequins design. These feminine cards are so perfect for sending out after a birthday, bridal or baby shower. Click here to head to L v. D for the download.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

30 Birdy Free Downloads!

Eep. I turned 30 in November. It was...a little traumatizing. But now that it's 2012 I'm feeling much more zen about last year's big milestone. It's a brand new year. I'm loving myself, my life, my husband, and 30 can't touch me!

Maybe having these sweet little free printables from Seven Thirty Three would have made my birthday more palatable. I know it would have been prettier! Click here to head there and download them for your (or your friend's) big 3-0!

Monday, January 9, 2012

Gorgeous Printable Pillow Gift Boxes

Oh my goodness! These boxes are beautiful!! And free! You can find and print them at Oh Lovely Things where they were created.

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Camping Trivet

I spotted this nifty camping trivet in Sunset Magazine. The picture they had was much prettier than this, sorry. Trust me though, this one's worth checking out! It's a camping trivet that'll raise your cooking pot above your fire for some fine outdoor chefery. The cool part is that it's made out of new horseshoes. It looks awesome! It's perfect for camping (duh), western and great outdoors themed parties (camping fondue, anyone?), and when you're not using it for its intended purpose you can clean it up and stack some books or plants on it. Neat! I wish I'd had this on my last camping trip when my husband jury-rigged a precarious swinging fire grate to cook on... Find it online at Blacksmith Creations ($58).

Saturday, January 7, 2012

The Perfect Please-All Thank You

I absolutely adore this idea! It comes from eighteen25, and it's the perfect thank you for teachers, co-workers, friends and family who have been exceptionally giving or helpful for any reason. Isn't it super smart to use a corrugated cardboard coffee sleeve as a pocket for a coffee gift certificate? Visit eighteen25 to download the "thanks a latte" print and for the full instructions.

Friday, January 6, 2012

This Dollhouse Makes My Own House Look Like Junk

Get ready for the coolest dollhouse ever. Seriously, could this be more chic? It's crazy awesome and full of glamorous pinks and blacks. Scraps of fabric and wrapping paper were turned into rugs and wall paper, and the doll furniture is off the hook. It's just plain the coolest ever. Visit Making It Lovely for lots more photos. While you're there click on some of the links within to check out other groovy dollhouses. Now I'm off to reflect on why dolls are living the high life and my house is an uncoordinated train wreck....

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Hot Air Balloon Printables!!

I am LOVING these amazing hot air balloon printables! They're from Candace Todd at Sparkle Power and they're adorable. Perfect for party decor, I'm also thinking baby mobiles and ornaments. So cute! Visit Sparkle Power for the details and the download.

Spotted via Creature Comforts.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

The Best Kitchen Tool You Never Use (Until Now)

I have loads of kitchen gadgets and gizmos collecting dust on shelves and in drawers, some fairly expensive ones too. So why is it I love one inexpensive tool over all others? Next to a sharp knife, only one tool has given me the most bang for its buck over the years: My melon baller.

Now let me just say, I can't believe I'm writing this love note to my melon baller. Or can I? I'm like a melon baller evangelist. I'm its number one fan. I'm getting everyone one for Christmas next year. And guess what? I've never scooped melon balls once.

Allow me to bring you over to the dark side...

5 Non-Melon Uses For My Awesome Melon Baller:

1) Scraping the ribs out of bell peppers and jalapenos — so much easier than with a knife! 2) Seeding tomatoes 3) Removing the seeds and flesh from squash before cooking 4) Hulling strawberries 5) Making butter balls — okay, this one's not that common, but pretty scooped butter is fun for special dinners

And I discover new uses all the time! Turns out it works for getting those tricky "eyes" out of a pineapple (you know...when you cut off the exterior but the prickles are deeper in a few spots). I just started using it to scoop out my avocados. Melon ballers are just sharp enough—clean-cutting but not dangerous to handle. It's like a knife and a spoon made a baby. And thus ends my gadget geekery on this subject. Go forth and try it for yourself!

Monday, January 2, 2012

Sequin Photobooth

I'm seeing sparkly and glam parties everywhere these days, and not just for the new year. A metallic, glossy, glam look is perfect for bachelorette parties, cocktails, and birthdays. That's why I love this DIY sequined photobooth from Oh Happy Day. They have a full tutorial, including sources, to help you make your own for your next party! Click here to head there now.

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