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DIY, Food

Cactus-Themed Baby Shower for Sarah!

pretty-sarah-maternity-shoot-17This is my beautiful little sister Sarah. In anywhere from 0-8 days (and hopefully not too much longer), she’ll be giving birth to my first niece or nephew, and I couldn’t be more thrilled. A few weeks ago, I was lucky enough to help plan and host a shower for little Baby Forrest at my mom’s lovely house in San Antonio. After a good bit of brainstorming, we decided to pay tribute to our South Texas location with a cactus-themed party.

Colorful cacti with vibrant blooms took center stage on the soft turquoise invitations, hinting at the decor to come. I enlisted the help of my other siblings, Genevieve and Billy, to sculpt little cactus menu card holders, and my mom painted them with bright colors—truly a great example of family teamwork. I used a cactus-shaped cookie cutter to transform regular turkey, cheese and pesto sandwiches into bite-sized saguaros. Tiny avocado toasts topped with shaved radish, a kale salad inspired by one of my favorite restaurants in SF and grilled flank steak with chimichurri sauce (another shoutout to Billy on that one) rounded out the savory small plates.

cactus-baby-showercactus-baby-shower-2For desert there were chocolate-dipped pretzels, a delicious bundt cake with cream-cheese frosting and chocolate-chip cookie ice cream sandwiches filled with mint-chocolate chip ice cream—something Sarah’s been craving a lot lately. We served all of these tasty snacks atop DIYed marble-look platters, made by affixing marble contact paper to circular pieces of wood. It’s a great way to make a bunch of beautiful and semi-disposable serving trays that all match and look much more polished than paper plates. We also used this handy contact paper to wrap around the plain planters our actual cacti came in. Gotta love a double-duty party supply.

We went old school in the drinks department, offering this wonderfully classic and still very delicious Sunday punch, as well delicious lime-flavored Jarritos sodas (jamaica is actually my favorite flavor, but I had to stay within the color scheme here, you feel me?) served in darling Cheeky x designlovefest cups.

We eschewed the typical onesies in favor of painting wooden blocks—less laundry, more shelf-styling power, was the thought—and played all the fun baby shower standards. An over-abundance of flowers finished off the decor, and I crafted a flower crown for the queen of the party from the beautiful bunches of ranunculus and roses I scored at Trader Joe’s. The last DIY of the day was perhaps the most ambitious of them all: giant Geronimo-inspired balloons. They’re filled with glitter and festooned with layer after layer of colorful tassels, making them the perfect photo prop for an impromptu maternity shoot in the backyard.

All in all, it was a lovely evening spent celebrating the imminent arrival of little Baby Forrest. I can’t wait to find out whether it’s a boy or girl!


Accessories, DIY

DIY Floral Headband

easter-flower-headband-diy-5When I was a wee lass, I looked forward to Easter every year for the joyous celebrations and the candy-filled baskets, yes, but what I also treasured a certain wardrobe-expanding tradition: the purchase of an Easter outfit including a pastel dress, white gloves and a hat to match. I lovingly referred to this corresponding accessory as my Easter bonnet and I absolutely could not wait to don it come Sunday morning.

As I grew older, the Easter baskets remained but the tradition of the Easter bonnet faded away. This year I decided to bring that tradition back with a little twist. Instead of a big straw hat with the flower-embellished front flipped up as ’90s style dictated, I decided to go with a more modern, albeit ’70s-inspired floral headband. Sans spray paint dry time, this DIY floral headband took about five minutes to put together, but it adds a whole bunch of gilt glamour to any Easter Sunday look, whether you plan on heading to a sunrise service or a deviled egg-filled brunch.

easter-flower-headband-diy-3For this project, you’ll need the following:
• metallic gold spray paint
• gold headband
• wire-stem flowers
• needlenose pliers

1. Use foil-finish gold spray paint to cover each flower with at least two coats so the flowers have a metallic sheen.

2. Once the flowers are completely dry, after about an hour, hold the first flower just above the center of the headband and wrap the wire stem tightly around the headband. Working from the right, do the same with the next two flowers, making sure they’re nice and snug up against each other. Repeat on the left side.

3. Use the pliers to secure any ends that are poking out and pick out your finest Easter dress to pair your headband with.

easter-flower-headband-diy-6easter-flower-headband-diy-7Linking up with Sydney Fashion Hunter.