Friday, April 18, 2014

Beau or Bow? The Gender Reveal

Beau or Bow?!
This has been such an exciting time for me and my husband.  And while the health of our baby has always been our first priority, when we were informed of the gender by our doctor I was elated to share the news with my family and close friends in a very special way.  I planned an intimate brunch with a fun surprise to end the gathering and spill the beans.
We brunched on a simple menu of mini croissants, quiche, mini strawberry parfaits, mini cinnamon rolls, and lemonade and I decided to go with a black and white theme with fun details sprinkled throughout.
I've been practicing my calligraphy every chance I get (see here) so this party was the perfect opportunity to create some quick and easy tent cards, which added a fun and personal touch to the party.

When it came time to reveal the gender, each guest received a confetti popper I made from cake pop holders and confetti.  We held a countdown and all at once, the group popped their poppers, PINK confetti fluttering throughout the room!  I will share the DIY on this later! :)

All our guests left with itty-bitty succulent party favors my mom planted in mini terra-cotta pots.  The succulents were all taken from the larger plants in her garden and we carried out the black and white theme with a simple washi tape flag.
Coming up with all the plans and working on all the little details for our gender reveal party was so much fun, but definitely a lot of work, even for as simple a brunch as this!  (I planned this party on a whim, did everything in about a week and felt completely exhausted afterwards!!)  With that said, it was totally worth it to share our news in such a fun and special way. xo

Monday, April 7, 2014

Sugar & Chic on Etsy

Just recently, my Etsy shop celebrated its one year anniversary.  Since then, I've been slowly working to enhance the variety of products offered in my shop and have had the best time brainstorming and designing new things to add to the roundup. 
One exciting addition to the shop has been these calligraphy stamps, featuring my own handwritten calligraphy design.  These stamps were created with the idea that one doesn't need fancy calligraphy nibs or formal classes to use modern calligraphy on their favors, handmade cards, etc.  Currently offered in three sizes, these stamps have seen an overwhelming amount of success in the two months they've been available.  And it's no wonder--I can only imagine the amount versatility these stamps can offer from embossing to fun colors; the possibilities are limitless.  I'm excited to offer even more designs in the coming months!

Additionally, I've introduced a slew of new signs.  Most notable are my new chalkboard signs, customized and handwritten--perfect for your next gathering!
Lastly, my new Pretty Packaging kits come with a ton of cute items.  Varying in colors and combinations, these kits are perfect for adding those finishing touches to your presents.  A few even include a mini version of my Merci calligraphy stamp.
With the anticipation of baby's arrival right around the corner, the activity in my shop has definitely been keeping me on my toes to say the least!  But with a passion to create and sell what I love, it's sometimes hard to take a step back and just relax.  We'll see how long I last... ;)

Be sure to visit my Etsy shop here! xo

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

And Then There Were Three

Ok, it's definitely been quiet around here long enough!  And I couldn't be HAPPIER than to return to my blog with some very EXCITING news!
The night we found out our little family would be growing
My husband and I will be expecting our first child this June!!

As you can tell from my lack of posts, I've been super busy preparing for this new adventure we will be taking.  Life has suddenly become consumed by all thoughts of baby--doctor visits, learning about all the changes happening physically and emotionally, making room in the house and thinking about a nursery, the list, of course, goes on and on!  Not to mention the energy level just isn't what it was pre-baby!  And with all this, my Etsy store has been busier than ever, leaving no time to dedicate to something I hold very dear to my heart--my blog! 

So here's to making an effort to sit down and write. 

With just over 31 weeks under my belt, we've sailed into our 3rd trimester and are now about two months from nearing the finish line.  There have been a whirlwind of emotions compacted into these last 6 or 7 months--the thought that my husband and I will be responsible for another human life is terrifying yet exciting, beautiful, and thrilling all at the same time.  And besides the occasional back aches and tendency to move a little slower these days, pregnancy really hasn't been so bad.  I've been fortunate to have been graced with an easy pregnancy thus far, steering clear of any bouts of morning sickness or even the urge to binge on any crazy combos like pickles and ice cream.  I can happily say that I've enjoyed so much these months of carrying my little one around with me everywhere I go, observing baby's steady growth, and gradually feeling the little kicks become stronger and stronger.  Oh what an amazing feeling it is to feel those kicks!  It's something so magical and inexplicable--maybe a feeling only a mother can know?

The last several months have gone smoothly, flashing by with a blink of an eye and part of me actually thinks I will miss being pregnant!  Does that sound crazy??  And to think that in just a couple months, I'm going to be someone's momma is mind-blowing.  But the thrill and anticipation of the joy that is to come trumps all these worries/thoughts/fears.  The hubby and I have been blessed with such a special opportunity to become parents and I can't be more over-the-moon excited to meet our sweet baby.
Babymooning in Hawaii, 26 weeks
Here are a few photos of our progression plus a short video we put together to announce our new addition to our family and friends. ♥
10 weeks, 1 day
12 weeks, 1 day
18 weeks, 5 days

20 weeks
28 weeks


Tuesday, August 20, 2013

China Hutch Redo

As part of our wedding gift, my parents bought us our complete set of wedding china (totally unexpected/best parents ever!) and I immediately knew I would need somewhere to keep this pretty new dinnerware, which would only be used for holiday dinners and other special occasions, but would need to be seen always because of its sheer beauty and symbolism.  Kitchen cupboards would not do the beauties justice and I had just what I wanted in mind.  I needed me a china hutch.  

New hutches can cost anywhere from $800- maybe thousands?  I really had no idea actually, but knew somewhere out there was a hutch calling my name.  I spent months on and off browsing thrift stores and Craigslist without much luck.  Most hutches either exceeded the budget or were beyond makeover worthy.  I waited months and months and my pretties sat in their pretty pink boxes, anxiously awaiting their debut.
Growing antsy, I began checking Craigslist everyday, positive the hutch of my dreams would list.  And on one lucky Monday morning, I spotted this gem.  Within 15 minutes of the listing being posted, I was on the phone with the owner arranging a pickup time.  Obsessed much?  But isn't she grand??  Here she is after finally getting her home all in one piece--a big achievement in itself, as this thing weighs a ton and the glass on the front panels is extremely fragile.  This was soooooo worth the drive to West LA.  After work on a Monday evening.  In typical LA traffic. So so worth it.  
Sure, she didn't come without her bumps and bruises, but for a whopping 50 bucks, I couldn't complain one bit.  Yucky stains, scuffs, and missing knobs expose her age: 
After removing all the hardware, I gave the whole piece a good rub down with a mix of warm water and vinegar to remove the dirt, stains, and funky odor generally associated with old furniture.  I then sanded the hutch to even out any scuffs and rough it up a bit for better paint adhesion.  

I wanted the interior of the hutch to offset the exterior, which I would be painting glossy white.  I chose a cool blue to match other parts of the room and our wedding china.  I randomly chose Water Mark by Behr and was ecstatic that it ended up being a perrrrrrrfect match (something that almost never happens for me -_-).  The color is super light and almost appears white in the can.  It gives the perfect amount of pop, though, when set against stark white.  Since I didn't have a lot of space to cover, I purchased a small color sample for about $2 or $3, which worked out great.

Here's a shot after painting inside the kimono.  And with just two coats of fresh paint, she's already taken on a new personality.
I decided this time to skip the primer and took off running with the oil-based paint.  This time it was Gloss White by Rust-oleum.
Two careful coats and many waiting hours/days, she was complete!
I purchased some new knobs from the hardware store, but used all of the other original hardware, deciding to leave it in its natural state.  I may paint the hardware sometime in the future or may not...

The part I had been waiting so long for had finally come: filling the hutch with all the beautiful china.

I had lots of fun trying out different configurations and will probably change up the set up often.  There are grooves inside the hutch to stand the plates, which I did for picture purposes and subsequently took down, still not completely trusting. :)
As massive as this baby is, this hutch was surprisingly my easiest, most rewarding, and perhaps cheapest project to date.  Here is a breakdown of the cost: 
  • Hutch: $50
  • Paint: $13
  • 3 Crystal Knobs: $12
A $75 project for the win.  If you can imagine, I'm completely enamored with the thing.  It so perfectly fills a void we'd had in our dining area and remedied an awkward corner I'd been struggling with.  The white and blue are so cooling and makes our room feel so darn fresh.  I catch myself finding reasons to go into that room just to look at the pretty new cabinet.  In love?  Yes, I think so. :)  Here are more pictures of the before and after.  Thanks for looking!

Monday, August 5, 2013

Guest Bathroom Mini Makeover

A few weeks ago, we gave our bathroom a mini facelift and I'm excited to finally share it over here on the blog!  Until recently, the room was seriously lacking in both style and storage.  We have two bathrooms in the house, both of which are incredibly small with very little space to store anything.  And it's not that I'm opposed to sharing, but two hurrying adults in one small tiny bathroom on early weekday mornings is just a no-go.  So the Mr. and I have taken to our own--I've inhabited the master while politely pushing him to use the guest bathroom on the other side of the house.  This routine has worked out great for us, but I wanted his space to feel a bit more comfortable with organized solutions for all of his manly man stuff, while still looking great because, after all, this was still the guest bathroom and needed to stay tidy and presentable.  Our goal was to stay within a reasonable budget and by making a few small changes here and there, we've managed to add a bit more character, storage space, and create a space we both love without breaking the bank.

The bathroom was lacking big time.  No charm, no style, nada.  Here are the before shots (pardon the poor lighting - this bathroom gets zero natural light!).

We swapped out our former simple mirror for this black-framed beauty from Home Goods, which has tons of detail and style.  The black plays so nicely with some of the other hardware and all that facial hair on the new shower curtain. :)

Our old boring brown shower curtain was changed for one with a lot more character.  I hadn't realized how the dark brown curtain accentuated the already small, window-less bathroom.  By introducing a white curtain, we've lightened things up, which gives an illusion of a larger space.  The hubby picked this one out and insisted we buy it.  To be honest, I was initially so hesitant, convinced it would not fit in with the rest of our house.  But since putting it up, I've grown to love it so much.  It's a big wall of fun every time you walk into the bathroom, proving to be a great purchase (and we got it on clearance to boot).

The biggest change were shelves we made with a few boards of wood, some stain and brackets I purchased off Amazon.  After staining the wood, I gave it a good beating with a chain and a hammer to give it a more distressed look (great therapy for a stressful day!;)).  I love the rustic-meets-industrial look of how these came out.

 The shelves provide great storage space for extra towels, TP, and other bathroom necessities, as well as some other cute pops of decoration.  These shelves are by far my favorite part of the room.  They were so easy to put together and install, but add big impact for the small space.

And lastly, I finally framed my shot of the gondolier from our trip to Italy.  I think it fits perfectly in here!

With a few minor changes here and there, our guest bathroom facelift is complete (at least for now!).  We stayed within a comfortable budget and managed to create a space that we're very pleased with.

Have you given any rooms in your home a facelift recently?


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