Wednesday, June 27, 2012

{prize trophy make-over}

Apparently we have been in quite the spray painting kind of mood lately, we sprayed this guy gold and today I have the opposite make over for some trophies going from gold to matte white.  I stumbled across this pack of award trophies in the children's party aisle at Party City and I figured they would be great to use for some tiny floral arrangements for Jeff & Katie's upcoming engagement party.  The gold color on them is pretty tacky so we spray painted them a matte white and I experimented with planting some little succulents in them.

At only $10 for 8 of these guys they would be useful for a variety of situations like bridal shower/wedding favors or even as a nice little token for a co-worker's desk on their birthday.  I cant wait to see how they turn out filled with flowers next month!

Monday, June 25, 2012

{our new bulldog}

 While picking up some things in the flower district for the wedding a few months back, I happened across a huge selection of plaster figurines at BnB Floral Supply on Wall Street next door to the Original Flower Mart.   Most of the plaster figurines range from super tacky to super weird like huge David statues or creepy Easter bunnies, but hidden amongst those are some real gems.  I picked up this bulldog and an eagle statue for less than $25.  This past weekend, we spray painted the bulldog gold, named him Frank and he now lives alongside our bar....

Friday, June 22, 2012

{friday cocktail: party-sized agua fresca}

We spent this past weekend at Chris' vacation home in Palm Springs relaxing by the pool with friends.  Since there was a pretty big group of us going out there, we decided it would be best to make a large batch of something refreshing (and alcoholic) for people to drink throughout the day.  After looking through a few agua fresca recipes to get an idea of the basic proportions, Chris and I ended up just winging it with this recipe and it turned out perfectly.   The watermelon is light and refreshing, but the ginger and basil really add a punch of flavor that elevates this fresca from just a simple squeezed juice.  Here is our party sized recipe which was more than enough to serve 13 people throughout a day by the pool:

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

{engagement party inspiration}

Next month some of my friends and I will be throwing a little engagement party for newly engaged couple, Jeff & Katie.  Kay & I got to work brainstorming the decor/theme about three seconds after the idea of hosting a party was presented to us.  After throwing around a few ideas for the color scheme, we decided on following Amanda's lead with a darker more modern color scheme that while it includes pink wouldn't get too girly.   Somehow despite my undying love for all things Confetti System, I have never actually made it in a big way to decorate a party so there is definitely plans for some of that along with a big balloon statement, mini floral arrangements, cocktails and of course- champagne!  Here is a little inspiration board I put together for the upcoming festivities:

You can follow the pinterest board for this party here and be sure to check back in a few weeks for a run down on the party!

Friday, June 15, 2012

{friday cocktail: hibiscus champagne}

Every single time we are in the checkout line at Bevmo, I always find myself eying the small jars of hibiscus flowers they sell for use in appetizers or cocktails.  In the past, I have always talked myself out of buying a jar since it seems really frivolous, but then again drinking champagne cocktails on a Thursday evening is pretty frivolous anyways.  Long story short- I bought a jar and here is the very simple, sweet and delicious recipe I made with it.  (if you cant follow this recipe- you are doomed in the cocktail department).


Wednesday, June 13, 2012

{new in}

Spring flew by in a heartbeat and with the first official day of summer right around the corner, I thought it might be fun to round up some of the new things around our place (and by "our place" I mean mostly around my closet)...

 {statement necklaces from Zara & Forever21}

 {little studded quilted cross-body bag}

 {new coffee table books from our wedding registry: Laduree's Sucre & Savory recipe books, Coco, Palm Springs Living}

 {even though Chris wouldnt let me buy this, I still have this little vintage swan vase from Etsy}

 {beautiful serving bowl or ice bucket off our registry from Zgallerie}

 {lucky find at Nordstrom: Sam Edelman peep toe bow heels- yes, I do have them in two colors}

 {summery dresses from and the downtown LA fashion district}

Monday, June 11, 2012

{gourmet grilled cheese}

After watching Anthony Bourdain's Food Porn special and seeing a ridiculous tallegio, braised short rib and pickled onion grilled cheese get made,  I thought it might be fun to re-create that sandwich along with some other variations for a gourmet grilled cheese dinner.  Yesterday after some great finds at the Rose Bowl flea market, we stopped by Trader Joe's to pick up ingredients to make three different grilled cheeses.  The combinatons we decided on were:

#1: blackberry, basil, fontina (recipe here)
#2: bbq beef, pickled red onions, cheddar/gruyere
#3: avocado, sriracha, gouda (similar recipe here)

Every single one of this was great (hard to go wrong with anything that includes melted cheese), but the favorite by far was #3.   The spicy sriracha mixed with creamy avocado and strong gouda flavor turned out to be a very simple but winning combo.  The blackberry/basil one was great, but was definitely lacking a big punch of flavor since Fontina is a relatively mild cheese.  The BBQ beef option was hearty and filled with flavor and crunch from the pickled onions, but this one felt more like the BBQ beef was the center stage of the sandwich rather than a grilled cheese.

Three grilled cheese sandwiches between two people is definitely a decadent dinner option and I can't imagine this will be a new weeknight staple, but a trio of grilled cheeses would make for a great appetizer for guests served sliced into bite size portions!

Friday, June 8, 2012

{friday cocktail: rose caipirinha}

Last weekend while enjoying the perfect LA weather, Chris made us some raspberry caipirinhas to enjoy and it reminded me just how perfect this cocktail is as a summer refreshment (you can see my recipe for blackberry caipirinhas here).  I starting thinking about other variations on a classic caipirinha that we might want to try and thought this might be the perfect cocktail to use up some of our rose syrup.  While we did make rose syrup from scratch in the past (recipe here), I opted to use our bottle of Monin Rose syrup for this cocktail.  While it was fun to try making the syrup, there is very little difference between the home-made and store bought versions other than the fact that the store bought one has a much longer shelf life. 


Wednesday, June 6, 2012

{our wedding: the highlight video}

The guys over at Nick Radford did such an amazing job capturing the highlights from our wedding.   I absolutely cannot wait to see the full length video next week, but for now we have this little jem to watch over and over!!  I have so many favorite parts of this video, but I would say the standout moments are having our "first look" captured on film and the confetti shot at the very end. (click here if the video below won't play for you)

Friday, June 1, 2012

{friday cocktail: mrs x}

I received these awesome glasses at my bridal shower a few months ago, but wanted to wait til after the wedding to use them.  What better way to break them in than with a custom cocktail titled Mrs X for my new last name.  This cocktail is a slightly modified version of The Business (one of my favorite cocktails & the first cocktail post on this post).  I simply made this cocktail recipe a little sweeter and girly by adding some St Germain and few dashes of lavender bitters.