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1  COOKING / Dessert / First tiered cake, covered in marshmallow fondant on: February 21, 2011 10:26:18 PM
I'm so excited! I made my first tiered cake tonight, and it seems fairly successful! I'm still unsure of exactly how to make it super secure (I put dowel rods in, but it's just sitting on top) but as it's not moving anywhere other than MY MOUTH hehe I'm not too worried.
I used a Martha Stewart yellow cake recipe, and chocolate ganache whipped into fluffy icing. I also tried to marble the fondant on the top tier but it's really subtle.
2  OCCASIONS AND HOLIDAYS / Weddings and Bridal Showers / Bridal Shower Invitation, with "love is in the air" poem on: January 12, 2011 12:14:13 PM
I'm my mother's matron of honor and I was bored last night, so I decided to design her bridal shower invitations. I already knew I wanted the theme to be "Love is in the Air" so I wanted the cards to play off that kind without being too cheesy, and I wanted the wording to do the same but I just could not get the dang thing to not sound like a 10 year old wrote it. My very awesome sister banged it out in just a couple of minutes.
This is the edited version of the card for the web. It's a lot smaller than the actual invite will be (4x6), so in case you can't read it, this is the poem my sister wrote for it:

You're invited to a bridal shower
To fete Liz before her big day.
Let's help her keep love in the air
And set the scene for her and her fiance.
Candles, chocolate, satin sheets,
Rich tastes, soft sounds, and low light
Are the kinds of things she'll need
To keep the mood just right.
Please bring anything that might help set the mood for love!
(shower deets)

In case anyone was wondering, this was created in PS7, with a gradient and a bunch of downloaded brushes from Deviant art. You can't really tell in the small version, but there are really tiny stars in the darkest part of the sky, and the hearts are kinda cloudy. Easy peasy but I like it *shrugs*

Any suggestions to make it better?? Or should I keep it as is?
3  CLOTHING / Clothing: Discussion and Questions / Little Brown Dress (HELP!) on: June 29, 2009 02:02:23 PM
A friend from high school, K, is getting married in a little less than two weeks, and the hubs and I are invited. I asked her how we should dress cuz it's at a church at 3:30pm, and she said "Sunday best." That's a little vague, especially with the lazy way people dress nowadays, but I figured I knew basically what it meant.
I happened to go to a thrift store, and found a kinda fancy dress in my size(!) So, of course, I had to buy it. However, if it's too formal for K's wedding, I don't know where I'll get the chance to wear it. I'm trying to think of ways to dress it down, and haven't come up with much, other than a shrug made out of a kinda t-shirt material but I feel that looks a little off.
I need help deciding if it's too fancy, and if it's not, what I should pair it with.
Excuse the mess on the table. I couldn't pull the dressform out from its corner because DH refuses to help me clean the man-cave. It's really plain, but I like the little pleats in the back Smiley And yes, I realize it needs to be ironed/steamed/pressed/whatever. I'll get to those details later.

Looking at them all lined up, I think I like numbers 2 and 4 the best. If I wore number 2 I think I would try to find the lace shrug my mom and I made that I've never worn. I dunno, it might be too fancy though.
was really excited that this fit me because it's 2 sizes smaller than my wedding dress, but I feel it needs a few things fixed before it's perfect. It had a little brown bow on the back but I didn't like it so I removed it. The hook at the top needs to be sewn back on. I don't like where the hem hits me, so I'm going to shorten it a bit, to knee length. I'm thinking about making a colored petticoat and having a bit peak out underneath, but probably not. I was also thinking it might be cute to ...oh how do I describe it? Bunch it up on one side a little bit so that the petticoat would stick out more. I dunno, maybe that's stupid. And, seeing as how K's wedding is at a church, every rule of etiquette I've read says to not bare too much skin (i.e. no strapless/sleeveless) so I need to do something about that too.  I'm thinking the petticoat + bunched up thing + something to make it more church-appropriate would all be a bit much. I guess I just wanted opinions before I started hacking it up. So, ladies and gents, any opinions?
4  OCCASIONS AND HOLIDAYS / Weddings and Bridal Showers / theKster and mrKster 3/22/09 wedding (plans/crafts) on: February 02, 2009 11:32:29 PM
So, obviously our wedding hasn't passed yet (47 days away!) but I wanted to start a thread to keep track of all my crafts and things I still need to do. Our wedding will be on March 22, 2009 and will be held in Houston, TX. Fortunately for us(/me) the place we selected does everything, so instead of worrying about researching/booking/renting all the different places and things, I get to work on crafts. WOO!
So, here's my list of stuff I've done and still have to do, along with pics of what I've completed. Not all of it is crafty, but whatever.

  • Bridal shower invites These were made completely from scratch by me. The envelopes were made from regular printer paper with pink tissue paper on the inside, and the 2 maps are actually on one piece of paper; I just turned one of them over so you could see both sides at once.
  • Large photo signature mat
  • Monogram
  • Invitations
  • RSVP cards
    (Invitations/rsvp cards/envelopes were from an invite kit from Walmart on the CHEAP, sucka!)
  • Announcement cards (will look essentially the same as the invitations)
  • Save the date magnets I can't find a picture of these anymore, but we only made about 8 cuz we didn't have that many OOT'ers, but then our date changed so they didn't matter anyways.
  • Favor boxes (2 kinds!)
  • Favors
  • “Be my bridesmaid card
  • Rehearsal dinner invitations
  • programs
  • Table numbers ... I think the first one is the one that got soaked cuz I didn't laminate it right.

  • Escort cards
  • Thank you cards (won't be able to make these til after the wedding)
  • Card box Obviously not quite finished

  • Dress
    My mom hemmed the dress and the bustle, and I made a thing to tie up the back so it would match my colors
  • Lace shrug
  • Veil
  • pearl necklace/bracelet/earring set 
  • Bridesmaids' reversible shawls
  • black pearl necklaces and earrings for bridesmaids
  • Make purses filled with bridesmaidy stuff

  • Flower girl basket
  • Bouquet Add pearls to the end of white strings
  • Boutonnieres/corsages
  • Bouquet charms
  • Pearl/clear bead accent sticks

  • Bathroom stuff holder I made these to just go in the bathroom for the guests to use, but it may end up just being used for the bridal party
  • pretty pen and holder for signing in

    I'll most likely have to make a sign to let people know these are pens and not just flowers.
    • Bunch of weddingy frames to put pictures of us near the guest book

    The little hair thing is my something blue, and possibly something old
  • Unity candle holders I bought three candle holders, and used one of them to put a glass candle holder on top (need to buy different candles...tapers are weird and not straight, and the middle one broke which is why it's so short)
  • Unity candle holder
  • Memorial candles for my father and father-in-law (I made these already but they look stupid so I'm redoing them with glass paint pens
  • “Reserved” signs for family’s seats
  • Decorate "L" on toasting glasses holder ]
  • Silver cake base

  • Bridesmaids’/groomsmen’s gifts
  • Groom’s gift (survival kit on craftster)
  • buy naughty stuff
  • make black pouch to put naughty stuff in
  • make boxers out of soft tshirt or something (he thinks silk boxers are weird)
    The pouch will have a drawstring when I can find the spare one I had around the house. I think I may buy more stuff to put in there... it seems kinda empty. I should have measured before I made it haha
  • Handkerchief for me
  • Handkerchief for bridesmaids
    I have six hankies that I made but I wanted to embroider intials on the bridesmaids')
  • Handkerchief for mom/mother in law
  • Ring bearer pillows
  • Cake topper
  • Website with RSVP www.karynandjohnny.8m.com
  • Bubbles for send off
  • Create playlist for wedding music
  • Heart crayons
  • Rubber stamp I didn't have quite enough to make it in one whole piece, so I had to just glue it side by side... It didn't turn out as well as I had hoped so I just didn't use it :/
5  COOKING / Dessert / Caramel (and chocolate) Apples on: January 14, 2009 01:10:39 PM
I made (among other things) caramel apples for Christmas presents this year, and they were DELICIOUS. I didn't want to just use melted caramel candies cuz I usually don't like apples made with those, so I searched high and low for a recipe to make my own caramel. And heeeere it is!

(Excuse my crappy photography skills)

8-10 med. size firm apples
8-10 wooden sticks
1 1/3 c. evaporated milk
1/2 c. light corn syrup
2 c. sugar
1 tbsp. butter
1 tsp. vanilla

Wash, dry and polish apples. Remove stem and insert sticks. Remove blossom. Put milk, syrup and sugar in heavy saucepan. Heat, stir to dissolve sugar. Boil stirring constantly until thermometer reaches soft ball 240 degrees or until a bit dropped ice water forms soft ball that flattens easily. Remove from heat. Stir in butter and vanilla. Dip apples to coat holding over saucepan to drain. Place saucepan over heat to thin as needed. Place apples stick side up on greased pan or tray or on wax paper.

Writing Chocolate
1 cup chocolate chips
2 teaspoons canola oil

In a small bowl or measuring cup combine the chocolate chips and the oil. Heat in the microwave on high for 3 minutes. Put in a ziplock bag. Cut one of the bottom corners (VERY SMALL!) and then squiggle over the top of the apples.

(My caramel had little brown spots in it that made it look not as pretty as I wanted, which I think is because I stirred it too much, but I'm not sure cuz I've never made caramel before, so I used writing chocolate to cover.)

6  COOKING / Recipes and Cooking Tips / Gingerbread house....with complications + pics on: December 19, 2008 07:56:39 PM
ETA: link to gingerbread house recipe
<Long story>
I've never made a gingerbread house, and I'm kind of disappointed in it. I guess I was overambitious by trying to add "stained glass windows" (melted jolly ranchers allowed to cool and harden.) The windows, for the most part, worked pretty well, but one 2 of the windows broke when I was trying to get them off the pan, and 1 of those windows broke part of the wall. I was able to fix the wall with royal icing, and hide the front broken window with a candy cane stick, and figured I could just say there was a break-in in the gingerbread neighborhood... it's been about 3 weeks since I made them, and the windows have melted. One of the walls, I cooked on an insulated pan and forgot to increase the cooking time, so it was a little more...pliable, I guess would be the word, than the other walls. Also, I made a swing set out of 5 candy canes (1 had the curly part broken off), twizzler pull-and-peel dealies, and an Andes mint) but the top part wouldn't stay attached to the sides, so I ate it. Smiley
I was going to include the recipe, but I forgot to save it on my computer. I have the print out somewhere around here, I think, so I'll include it later, if anyone wants. http://allrecipes.com/Recipe/Childrens-Gingerbread-House/Detail.aspx
It was pretty good, and I don't even usually like gingerbread.
</long story>
On to the pictures!

(before it melted, but after it broke)

melted windows, with a pool of melted window at the bottom

here you can see it goes all the way through.

Annnnnyways, I guess it's okay for a first try, but I told my fiance I just wanted to smash it. Lame.
7  COOKING / Dessert / Airplane Cake on: August 12, 2008 10:13:07 PM
My brother's birthday is technically today (what with it being 12:09 and all,) and I made him a birthday cake. I found an image online and used it to carve the cake.
I used star tip #16 for the red and blue parts, and round tip #idon'tknow for the outline. The icing was all buttercream, but the outline had cocoa and black food coloring gel mixed in.

8  HOME SWEET HOME / Crafty Housewares: Completed Projects: General / Key Holder Woodburning on: August 04, 2008 10:42:39 PM
This was just a piece of light-colored softwood, already cut into this shape. I drew out the words, traced it onto the wood, burned it into the wood, and then stained it. I wanted it to be useful, instead of just "wall art" so I added little hooks to be able to hang keys and attached a little piece of metal that I don't know the name of to be able to hang it.
This if my first woodburning. You can see on the loop connecting the lowercase l and y that I messed up, and at the top right of the lowercase L.

9  COOKING / Dessert / Birthday Rainbow Dino Cake! on: August 01, 2008 10:27:14 PM
Rainbow Birthday Dino Cake

My best friend's 20th birthday coincided with her having to move into a new apartment, and she was kinda sad that she wouldn't get to do anything for her birthday. She requested that I make her a cake anyways, but I decided to make her an awesome cake. I was going to make her a cake in the shape of a couch that said "Real friends help you move" or something but the test cake I made refused to stand up straight so I scrapped that idea and came up with a dino cake since she loves dinosaurs. After that decision, I found this awesome cake https://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=258219.0 and incorporated it into my dino cake.
I got the image (to use to carve the cake) from the Wilton website because I couldn't find the dinosaur cake pan in the stores. The sides are really sloppily iced cuz I'm horrible at side-icing.
Also, the light green parts were supposed to be little stars filled in but either my icing was too thin (it was medium consistency buttercream) or my tips are too low quality. I don't know.

Delightful insides!

I also decorated the top of the cake box with sharpies with the image of a robot doing the robot dance (she loves robots too.)

She didn't really make that big of a deal about it, but she and her boyfriend did say that it was, and I quote, "Awesome." And her boyfriend asked why I wasn't working at a bakery haha. AND! She said after the cake is gone, she's putting the cakebox on the mantel as artwork haha Smiley
10  BATH AND BEAUTY / Bath and Beauty: Completed Projects / Japanese Hair Straightening on: July 08, 2008 04:26:20 PM
This isn't too terribly crafty but there's a couple of hair threads on here, so why not?
In 2006, I had to take 12 hours of continuing education as required by law (I guess) in order to renew my cosmetology license, and 8 of those hours were a course in Japanese hair straightening. It was actually kinda fun, but very tedious. There were a LOT of repeated steps. In the class, we only did a mock straightening (where you don't use the actual chemical -the straightening- and use an alternative -gel or cholosterol, usually- instead..)

Halfway done. The straightened hair is SOOO much more smooth and shiny. You can see the difference in length here.
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