Friday Faves From Minted

Happy New Year! I’ve decided to make a few changes to the blog in the new year. Along with featuring interiors I’ve done, projects I’ve completed, and plans for rooms and furnishings, I’ve decided to implement some regular columns. First up: Friday Faves, where I’ll highlight favorite products, new collections, amazing sites, fantastic apps, etc. (you get the picture).

First Friday Fave? Minted’s birth announcements and thank you cards we had done when G was born.

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Minted’s designs are gorgeous! There are loads of options when it comes to customization, including font, color, borders, and paper.

I love the way ours turned out. The paper was fabulous (we opted for the signature paper, a thick, slightly textured stock) and the picture was clear, which is a big deal. We tried another company for our holiday cards, and while the photo was taken with our fancy DSL camera and was not at all fuzzy on our computer screens, the photo on the cards isn’t crisp. Still adorable, but a little bit of a bummer.

Anyway, our Minted order also included personalized thank you cards to show our gratitude to the friends and family who gifted us with clothes, gear, diapers, bottles, towels, and toys.

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Aren’t these adorable? I also could have opted to have this adorable allover heart pattern put on the back of the birth announcements, but I decided to keep it clean and simple.

Minted’s offerings don’t stop at birth announcements. I’m currently helping a friend plan her 2015 wedding. The nuptials are in June, and they haven’t sent out save-the-date cards yet (experts say these should be mailed six months before the wedding), so that’s first up on the to-do-list.

We combed through Minted’s 760 save-the-date offerings and found several we liked. Which one is your favorite?

Screen Shot 2015-01-09 at 11.39.14 AMall in the numbers (they’ve been together since last June)

Screen Shot 2015-01-09 at 11.57.03 AMdate check (I like the bold simplicity; the couple has a a cool black and white shot of themselves that we were thinking would work in this template.)

Screen Shot 2015-01-09 at 12.07.13 PMcomplete love (they have several adorable selfies taken with a DSL)

**Disclaimer: I was compensated for this post. The opinions in this post are all mine.**


Create natural outdoor lighting

Twine balls
I was drawn to the natural texture of these spheres, constructed from grapevines and twigs, and I wanted to incorporate them in my wedding. But these puppies can get pricey. I started buying them one at a time at Michael’s on the 40 percent off coupons they offer, but wedding time was quickly approaching, and I needed several more. I ordered the remaining 16 eight-inch balls and four 10-inch spheres from, then purchased several bags of small twine, twig and other natural-material balls at TJMaxx and Marshall’s. You can typically find these down the gardening aisle or where they merchandise the potpourri.
Small twine balls
Twine ball chandelier
I wanted to wrap these twine and twig balls with lights, cluster them together and hang the chandeliers from the trees around the perimeter of the park where our reception dinner was held. I created a total of 20 natural light fixtures (with lots of help from Mom!) of varying lengths and sizes. I used simple monofilament line to string my twine balls together, then wound battery-powered lights around the two largest spheres in each chandelier cluster and secured the lights with zip ties.

And now 10 months after the day we said “I do,” I am reusing these twine balls (minus the lights) in another labor of love–the nursery of one of my dear friends (and a bridesmaid) Naomi’s daughter’s future nursery (she’s due in October).

Pretty simple centerpieces

I didn’t want there to be anything complicated about the table settings for our wedding. I envisioned rustic elegance with pure simplicity and a touch of the unexpected.

Remember the mood board I created for the wedding here?

I love the look of burlap but wanted a bit more color on the table. I found a gorgeous dark turquoise embroidery floss and enlisted my mom to help stitch peacock blue seams down either side of each runner. Note: This was an incredibly time-consuming process because we hand stitched them, but the result was fabulous!

We then used the leftover burlap to fashion napkin rings for my off-white linens (we bought these because it ended up being cheaper than renting them). To tie in the peacock blue, we wrapped each of the burlap rings several times (I’m talking like 10-15), then just adhered it with a dot of hot glue.

I wanted my centerpieces to be a mix of texture, colors and heights and include something vintage. I painted these seven-inch wooden boxes the same peacock blue I used on my map project and handed them over to my very talented friend and florist Sally Preston-Gonzalez of Exquisite Blooms to work her magic.

I found the blue glasses at TJMaxx and Marshalls one shopping trip, then enlisted family and friends around the country to hunt down as many as possible. I wanted to use them on the tables as votives. To add a few more candle holders to the table, I purchased a variety of glass containers at thrift stores, then purchased cylindrical vases in 3.5″x6″ and 4.5″x4.5″ sizes and spray painted the insides of each a metallic bronze. I peppered the table tops with small twine balls to introduce a natural element. Alarm clocks (purchased on ebay) set to various numbers told guests which table belonged to them. Time to eat.

Get creative with reception seating for weddings

Scott and I don’t take ourselves too seriously; therefore, we didn’t want anything about our wedding to be too serious, as evidenced by the menu I referenced here.

We both lived in several places before settling in San Diego—and meeting each other–so we both have family and friends spread all over the world. I thought it might be fun to show where our guests traveled from to be with us. One of the best men (we had two) flew in from Turkey and another groomsman came in from Australia.

I decided people would find their place (table number) on a giant map in lieu of traditional place cards. Annie, from Annie’s Blue Ribbon General Store, gifted me this world map cork board (thanks, Annie!) after I commented how perfect it would be for our wedding after I featured it in a Parade article last year.

Remember the wood palett wall in our bedroom I recently blogged about? I painted the leftover boards Behr’s Bermudan Blue and stapled them to a simple standup easel frame.

I cut small triangular flags from peacock blue card stock, wrote on them with this amazing gel pen and pinned them to the board. I needed to increase the surface areas of California, Arizona and Louisiana since a lot of our guests traveled from there, so I bought a roll of cork, traced clipart printouts and cut out the states. I planned out my map and adhered the cork geography with hot glue.

Make your own invites

Scott and I got married almost 10 months ago, and I am finally getting around to blogging about the décor I created with lots of help from my mom.

Scott and I wanted our wedding to feel very much like us, so we exchanged vows by the beach in San Diego, California, served street tacos (my favorite) and mac and cheese (his favorite) and kept everything fuss free.

For the décor, we kept it pretty simple with lots of homemade touches. You wouldn’t expect anything mass produced from me, would you?

I chose a peacock blue-and-copper palette and created an inspiration board to help me lay out my favorite ideas. Here’s what I came up with.
Wedding board inspiration
I didn’t want anything to feel theme-y so I started with the invitation design to set the tone for the wedding. This is, after all, how I was going to express to my guests that they were invited to an elegant but laid-back wedding at the beach.
I have a resource I’ve used numerous times for paper. I searched the inventory and found this incredible embossed white faux-bois card stock and this teal one too. Paper and More cut everything to my size specifications. (I had them cut the blue so that it would be 1/8-inch larger than the white on all sides.) This was an incredible time saver. I have yet to invest in a commercial-grade paper cutter. My Crafting Rotary Paper Trimmer would have made it through three sheets at a time at best.
Wedding invite sample
I designed this very simple invitation and a response card in Word. You read that right. Word.

North Shore Printery found me a great metallic copper Pantone and printed everything for me. This DIYer wasn’t about to attempt printing on textured card stock.

My mom and aunt helped create perfect circle response cards using the Martha Stewart Crafts Large Circle Cutter. We just made the teal blue cardstock a slightly larger circle size than the white. We used EZ Runner permanent tape to adhere the teal blue cardstock to the back of the white cards. Glue can get bubbly. This kept everything super flat. I bought a rectangle hand punch, 30 feet of bronze grosgrain ribbon from (currently unavailable), a 100 yards of turquoise-and-white baker’s twine and a heart punch.

The assembly line began. Scott, my brother and my mom helped assemble the invites.
Here’s how they turned out.
(Invite photos by Kim Mowbray)

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