Stir things up at your next party

By |January 6th, 2015|crafts, Uncategorized, wedding|

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In one of the (many) wedding magazines I’ve drooled on over the past few months on I spotted some custom drink stirrers and fell in total lust with them. I’m a sucker for personalized details- especially at a wedding! It’s the one time you can shamelessly slap your initials on just about everything. So I started looking around at the prices for said personalized drink stirrers and got some serious sticker shock. Shelling out hundreds of dollars for mini sticks of wood is just not in the budget. So I looked for a less expensive DIY option.

First I hunted down “Stampable” drink stirrers. I found some bamboo ones here that were less than $20 for 500! Hello steal. I ordered those right up and then made some stamps in Adobe Illustrator. If you don’t have illustrator you could also use Adobe Photoshop or even Microsoft word, just might take a little more effort to get the sizes correct. I made two stamps, one with a “K”, for the shameless initial part, and the other a fox, which is a nod to the history of our venue and part of our wedding theme. When all the supplies arrived I put on a few episodes of Law & Order and stamped my life away.

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To do about 400 it only took about two hours, or as I measured it, two episodes. The round K stamp was much faster because it was self inking and lined up right over the drink stirrer. The fox was a little trickier because I had to ink it and try to line it up evenly each time.

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I love the way they turned out and plan to put these guys in gold containers on the bars at the wedding, and maybe in our signature drinks.

love and candy,


crafting note:: When the bamboo sticks arrivedthere were some that were cracked andwarped, so plan accordingly when you order. I would allow for about 50 wasted ones between bad stamping skills and wood issues.

2014 Things I learned in 2014

By |January 1st, 2015|Uncategorized|

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Just kidding. Only 3. If you’re still reading this after that blog title, I applaud you. 2015 was a kick ass year. I got engaged to my bestie Steverino, got a promotion, became an Aunt, and had some ridiculously cool adventures at home and abroad. Here are a few lessons that I learned along the way:

  1. Balance is a unicorn,  a beautiful but mythical creature. I tried really hard this year to find balance. Balance between career and family, time alone and time with friends, blogging and wedding planning, regiment and spontaneity. I spent a lot of energy trying to find that perfect “balance” between it all. For a week or so I would think I had it. Balance was: Working out three times a week, Tuesdays nights for crafting, Thursday night girls night, Friday night date night, Saturday out on the town, Sunday for catching up on blogging housework  family time, etc.. For a week it would be great, and then the next week something would come up and it would all go to hell. I finally  realized that there isn’t one formula for balance, because things are always changing. The right balance one week may not work the following week or ever again. Maybe I have to work late one night and can’t make it to the gym, a friend needs someone to talk to, or maybe I feel like hibernating for a few days at home.  Instead of trying to force my life into a formula, I’m learning to go with the flow.
  1. It’s about the journey. Goal setting is fun. The sky’s the limit and there’s a rush of exhilaration that goes along with setting lofty goals. Last year I thought I would blog daily. I thought I would set monthly resolutions and keep the New Year momentum going all year. It worked for a while, probably about half the year, but then I realized that I wasn’t enjoying it anymore. It became a task, a chore that had to be completed. It was adding stress to my life. And if I know one thing, it’s that stress sucks. Stress is the ultimate swear word in my book. So I sat back and started asking myself not what I was doing, but why I was doing things. I started this blog because I loved to create, to write, to share. But when I started putting all of these constraints on myself it took the joy out of it. Realizing this, I loosened the reins on myself and took a break. It was hard to do, I felt antsy at first, but then it felt good. When I started up again, it was once again fun, I was enjoying the journey again. As I look towards goals for next year, they will be based around this joy for the process, not just end results.
  1. Quality over Quantity. This continues to apply to most things in life, including candy and clothes. This year I related it to relationships. Simply put, time is the hottest commodity. We can’t make more of it, and there will never be enough to go around. In my hunt for the balance unicorn, I realized how important quality time is. It’s not necessarily spending every night with your friends or family, but it’s making those interactions meaningful. Does this mean I’m going to stop going to bars and only have deep solo conversations with people? Don’t be silly. It just means that I have come to really treasure my close relationships and want to continue to invest the quality time in them to grow them.

Wishing you a safe and sparkly New Year’s!

love and champs,


DIY Illustrator Save the Dates

By |December 8th, 2014|DIY, graphic design, Uncategorized, wedding|



I always knew I wanted to design my own save the dates. It’s the first impression people have of your wedding, so I wanted it to be fun an unique. Plus if I messed it up, it’s just a save the date right ? I could redeem myself on the invites-if I’m brave enough to DIY those’-let’s mark that one TBD.

I wanted our save the dates to reflect both us and our wedding. So for the “us” part, I went with an engagement photo. Simple. I used Photoshop to edit one of our engagement photos, and then imported it into Adobe Illustrator where I designed the rest of the invite. To represent our wedding I used our colors, blush and sage, and incorporated desert flowers and cactus, to represent- you got it- the desert, where we are getting married.  I ended up finding some graphics I liked via Creative Market. If you haven’t checked out CM, now’s the time my friends. It’s like the mother ship of graphics and fonts. Heaven. So I bought some fonts and graphics and got to work. Not going to lie, it took a long time. Longer than it should have due to my newbie Illustrator skills (or lack thereof). But hey, practice makes perfect. And practice I did. Let’s just say that I watched a lot of YouTube videos.

Once I perfected finished my design, I researched all sorts of paper options for price and quality. There are soo many options out there and it took a while to educate myself on all of the different types and weight of paper- who knew paper could be so complicated? If you ever decide to print invites, all I can say is get samples. Some places will send them for free and some charge a few bucks, but if you are going to be printing something special you need to see what it is going to look like! After lots of research I ended up going with Got Print. They sent a free paper package and the “14pt Gloss Coated Cover” paper was perfecto. I wanted some gloss because of the photo, but not so glossy that it looked cheap. This worked. AND it was a great price.  I paid five bucks extra to get rounded corners, because well, I like rounded corners. The ordering was easy and from order to delivery I think it was 4 days until they arrived. Quick shipping and the quality was great.  I  can definitely recommend Got Print.


Once I got the save the dates in hand I headed to PaperSource to get some envelopes. I knew they would be more expensive than buying envelopes online, but I wanted to do a fun matchy color, and since I saved so much by printing my own I decided to “splurge” on envelopes. I know, Steve thought I was silly too! I ended up getting A7 envelopes in “sage”. They run $4.25 for 10, which is expensive for envelopes, but the quality is great and I was able to put them through my printer at home with no issues. Yes, I printed the addresses. You would too if you saw my handwriting :)


For the return address I designed a stamp and used it on the back of each envelope. It worked well but they took forever to dry- I had envelopes spread all over our apartment for 24 hours until they stopped smearing!



I finished them off with some white rose stamps and dropped them at the post office! I had a lot of fun making these, and all in all it ended up being an easy and inexpensive option. Here is the quick cost breakdown:

Project Cost (100 Save the Dates)

Creative Market Graphics:            $   9.00

Printing:                                            $ 49.41

Envelopes:                                         $ 42.50

Stamps:                                              $ 49.00

Total Cost:                                      $149.91

If you want to save even more money, you can always do post cards and skip the envelopes AND save on postage. Now about those invites… hmm…


 love and candy,