MARBLED PUMPKINS TUTORIAL FOR A BEAUTIFUL DIY THANKSGIVING TABLE SETTING

The holidays can be expensive, especially when you are the host.  Food is pricey on its own but decor can sometimes be quite frankly unaffordable.  This year the HUBS and I spent most of our funds buying (slash somewhat DIY'ing) our new dining table.  We desperately needed an 8-seater, especially since we were hosting thanksgiving for our family!  Turns out even DIY'ing a dining table isn't cheap! 

So I had to make some pretty drastic modifications to my thanksgiving decor budget aka DIY the entire thing.  I LOVE decorating, especially for the holidays.  It really brings warmth & personality to the home but more than that I love when my creations inspire others to create!  So I set out to create a marvelous Thanksgiving table setting without buying readymade decorations.  

First, I waited until Halloween was over, and scoured the city for some pumpkin varieties.  My friend and I went on a mini scavenger hunt to four different grocery stores before we found the jackpot at Tom Thumb!  They had tons of mini gourds of all shapes and sizes at a fraction of the cost since Halloween was over.  Score!

We purchased about 25 pumpkins, getting a good assortment of sizes and shapes (color didnt really matter since we were going to spray paint them).  We came home and immediately removed any labels before adding two coats (in some cases three) of white spray paint with primer.  We thoroughly let these dry (between layers) in the sun before marbling.  

To marble the pumpkins we used this tutorial.  We were able to apply the same principles and selected three different shades of blue, one light gray, and one pastel teal nail polish.  The more refined your color selection the more elegant the overall result.  Choose colors that compliment or can be found in your place setting - in my case my plates were white and blue and my accent color for thanksgiving was raspberry.

 In love with the way these pumpkins & gourds turned out 😱

In love with the way these pumpkins & gourds turned out 😱

marbled pumpkin chinoiserie table setting thanksgiving DIY table decor tutorial (charisma shah)
marbled pumpkin chinoiserie table setting thanksgiving DIY table decor tutorial (charisma shah)
marbled pumpkin chinoiserie table setting thanksgiving DIY table decor tutorial (charisma shah)

It took about a full 24 hours for all of the pumpkins to dry (the smaller pumpkins dried MUCH faster than the big one).  After these were done, I arranged them on our dining table (I did put small paper towel coasters under each pumpkin just in case the paint wasn't completely dry). 

I was originally planning on buying table/placemats but couldn't find exactly what I was looking for.  Instead, I ended up printing cheap paper mats with a fun original watercolor print in my selected colors.  I figured white placemats were bound to get dirty so why spend the time or money to make fabric ones when I would likely have to throw them.  Boy am I glad I went this route, because half the mats post dinner had severe stains.  

I designed this print in Photoshop and had it printed on 24 X 36 inch cheap paper at Office Depot.

thanksgiving table setting tablescape decor DIY tutorial (charisma shah)
IMG_0680w.jpg
marbled pumpkin chinoiserie table setting thanksgiving DIY table decor tutorial (charisma shah)

πŸ‘‡πŸ½ CLICK HERE FOR πŸ‘‡πŸ½  

FLATWARE  |  ORGANIC SHAPED SALAD & DINNER PLATES  |  WATERCOLOR BOWL 

MINI BOWLS 


I also decided to design hand-lettered menus and name cards that were also printed at Office Depot.  I wanted our table setting to be inspired without being too much going on.  The key in making this happen is dialing back and restraining from uncensored color use.  Everything involved the same three main colors: blue, white and my accent raspberry.  Initially I was really nervous about how everything would come together but it really turned out beautifully!

I purchased some blue, white and teal floral napkins on clearance from Anthropologie last summer.  Unfortunately, at the time they only had 4 left and were completely sold out online.  I had some leftover fabric from making my sister-in-law a floral watercolor lehenga, so I used the rest of it to make 4 more napkins to complement my Anthro ones.  Both sets of napkins went perfectly with each other and the rest of the table.  

Lastly: the actual flatware and dinnerware.  When the HUBS and I got married we purchased these really nice organic shaped ceramic table setting from West Elm (plates shown above).  Then a couple weeks ago, we spotted this watercolor bowl at Ikea.  When the HUBS saw it, he knew that I would be buying them.  He didn't even contest at all!  We are obsessed with this flatware (the HUBS calls them the "fancy spoons" πŸ˜‚) which can be found here.


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I hope you found this tutorial helpful and informative.  Happy Thanksgiving!! 

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Vegetarian Thanksgiving Dinner 8-Course Menu With Recipes

Being a first generation American, Thanksgiving is not the most traditional but definitely the most easily adoptable Western/American holiday.  Due to the likely overlap by lunar calendars, Thanksgiving was usually masked by the tremendous amount of celebration surrounding Navratri & Diwali, but on occasion - our family would celebrate Thanksgiving.  Its pretty easy as an Immigrant family to be thankful for the opportunities and happiness each year brings.

That being said, this year was the first family Thanksgiving that the HUBS and I hosted.  Since traditional menus are not that filling for vegetarians, or that flavorful compared to ethnic cuisines, we decided to deconstruct and create dishes that capture the essence of Thanksgiving without being trite.  

We also wanted to be fancy πŸ˜‚ and serve each dish as a separate course in a plated fashion.  I just have always wanted to recreate the experience of dining out at farm-to-table restaurants in my own home and what better occasion than a holiday?

Keep reading to find out more about how we prepared for the HUBS' entire family to come visit, decorated our thanksgiving table, and created new classic dishes that were a tremendous hit!  

PLANNING THE MENU

As you can see above, the HUBS and I hosted and served our Thanksgiving meal by plating each dish rather than having a buffet.  I was really determined to make sure our vegetarian thanksgiving dinner would be just as good if not better than its turkey counterpart, so creating a captivating and exciting menu was a challenge.  I was on a mission to make sure my non-vegetarian guests wouldn't even miss the turkey, and apparently they didn't!  Yay!  πŸ€—

After we found out we were officially hosting Thanksgiving, I started planning the menu.  I knew I wanted to serve this Macaroni & Cheese (one of my favorites!) but that was basically it.  I also knew that I wanted to really hone in on the colorful veggies that make thanksgiving so festive, so I set out to imagine some dishes.  Eventually, I ended up with the menu above: homemade root chips with charred fennel dip, cranberry canapΓ©s, herbed mashed potatoes, delicate squash salad, calabrian chile & date mac & cheese, and truffled portabellas served with leek quinoa dressing and herbed bΓ©chamel.  Each dish was such a big hit that there was very little rinsing of the plates needed before dishwashing πŸ˜‚.  #goals #cleanplateclub

THE DISHES

 creamy roasted fennel dip served here with a baked baguette.

creamy roasted fennel dip served here with a baked baguette.

In the past I have tried to make vegetable chips myself without really any success.  The chips were always to thick to bake all the way through - and there is nothing more annoying than soggy chips.  That being said, I really wanted to recreate a dish I had tried at this great little restaurant in Nashville called 5th & Taylor (if you haven't been you should go!).  They make some seriously good eats including a creamy fennel appetizer dip that is incredible addictive.  Instead of serving the dip with store bought root chips, I tried my hand one last time at making baked chips at home.  The HUBS, his mom, his dad, and I used this slicer to cut carrots, parsnips, apples and sweet potatoes into 1.5mm thick pieces - the thinner the piece, the better it will bake.  The slices were then tossed in olive oil with a pinch of salt and sugar.  You can find the full recipe for this dip here: http://www.charismashah.com/cache1/2017/11/20/creamy-roasted-fennel-dip.

 baked sweet potato, carrot, parsnip, and apple chips served with creamy roasted fennel dip.

baked sweet potato, carrot, parsnip, and apple chips served with creamy roasted fennel dip.

For the second course the HUBS and I wanted to serve a Thanksgiving spin on one of our favorite recipes.  We bought some wonderful mini french baguettes from our local market, and topped them with goat cheese, fresh arugula and cranberry compote.  We used this exact recipe, however substituted the cherries with 1 1/2 cups fresh cranberries, halved.  

The third course, our herbed mashed potatoes, is actually a recipe from one of my friend's.  After college, I attended my first traditional thanksgiving meal with an actual turkey.  I was such a fan of his herbed mashed potatoes that they have become a mainstay in our household with some slight variations.  You can find our adapted recipe here: http://www.charismashah.com/cache1/2017/11/20/herbed-mashed-potatoes  

 homemade garlic & herb mashed potatoes garnished with chives.

homemade garlic & herb mashed potatoes garnished with chives.

So at this point we had already incorporated sweet potatoes, mashed potatoes and cranberries.  Our next dish focused on squash.  As much as I love squash soups, it just has not been cold enough here to warrant a warm soup.  Instead we opted for a baked squash salad with arugula, pickled onions, parmesan, dill creme fraiche, toasted pepitas, and pomegranate.  The recipe for this dish can be found here:  http://www.charismashah.com/cache1/2017/11/20/baked-delicata-squash-salad-recipe

Since the portions of each course were becoming larger and larger, we started to slow down a little - taking and giving longer breaks between each course.  For our next dish we decided to serve our absolute FAVORITE macaroni and cheese recipe ever.  Really this mac n cheese can not be topped.  I'll spare you from my excessive & obsessive love for this dish.  Since mac n cheese is a Thanksgiving staple, we just HAD to make this rendition.  To see the full recipe click here:  http://www.charismashah.com/cache1/2017/3/16/flatiron-mac-cheese.

 When making this dish we suggest using radiatore or toscani pasta to really sop up the sauce.  

When making this dish we suggest using radiatore or toscani pasta to really sop up the sauce.  

At this point most of our family was pretty stuffed.  Actually I was completely stuffed (that macaroni is very filling and rich)!  I was so full I didnt even get to try this last dish.  In lieu of turkey, I needed something really filling.  The last thing my menu was missing was dressing, so I decided to make a vegetarian truffled quinoa dressing served on marinated portobello mushrooms with an herbed bΓ©chamel sauce.  This was the dish I was most worried about since A) I hadn't even tried it and B) was completely made up haha.  It ended up being a huge hit!  So much that the little nephew loved it too πŸ˜€.  To view this recipe click here:  http://www.charismashah.com/cache1/2017/11/20/vegetarian-thanksgiving-entree-alternative.

Finally the best part, dessert!!!  I am not the biggest fan of pie, so I opted to make a Churro Pumpkin Funnel Cake topped with Vanilla Bean ice cream and toasted oats.  Yummmm.  I could've eaten this all day πŸ˜‹.  To see this recipe click here:  http://www.charismashah.com/cache1/2017/11/20/churro-pumpkin-funnel-cake

 dipped in cinnamon sugary goodness.  

dipped in cinnamon sugary goodness.  

The last course was simply mulled wine.  The HUBS and I took two bottles of Rioja, added some chopped granny smith and red delicious apples, oranges, 6 cloves, 1 cinnamon stick, pinch of nutmeg and let this slow cook on the stove over low heat for 4 hours.  Immediately before serving, we topped off each glass of mulled wine with a splash of sugar-free orange soda.  Delicious and not too sweet! 

We had such a wonderful time celebrating our first official Thanksgiving with our family.  We are so thankful that it worked out for everyone to come together from all over the country for this holiday.  It could not have been more perfect!

HAPPY THANKSGIVING FROM OUR FAMILY TO YOURS

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P.S.  I will be posting a tutorial tomorrow on how to we created our tablescape! 

SUPER EASY DIY MINION DOORS FOR HALLOWEEN

Halloween is almost here!  Although, thanksgiving is more my decorating game, halloween is still tons of fun especially for those with kiddos and a sweet tooth (like me!).  Last year for Halloween the HUBS and I roped our friend to have a Minion party - and guess what.  We all dressed up like minions, duh.  But the most fun part was having 15 some odd adults dressed up as minions making their own minion for the wall, eating minion cupcakes on a table with minion pumpkins, in a house with great BIG minion doors.  It was a yellow & black explosion, but soooo fun.  It was like an adult craft party with sweet treats (yay!).  

Now, I apologize in advance, I do not have high quality images of these, but seriously, these doors are the easiest way to decorate in a BIG way.  

 haha don't you just love the 7 hairs on mr.minion on the left.  Maybe we should've left him a comb in his pocket 

haha don't you just love the 7 hairs on mr.minion on the left.  Maybe we should've left him a comb in his pocket 

NEED:

  1. roll of yellow kraft paper (measure your doors to make sure 1 roll is enough)
  2. blue poster board
  3. black & white poster board
  4. scissors
  5. glue (stick or gun)
  6. packing tape or painters tape 

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Its pretty self-explanatory, but roll the yellow paper over the door (completely covering the front of the door).
    1. tape the yellow paper to the door on the inside or back of door
  2. tape the blue poster board where you want the minions "pants" to be
  3. make an eye + goggle piece using the white & black poster board.  Adhere this to the door.
  4. Add personality to your minions by adding hair, mouthes, etc.

SIDE NOTE:  We used our remaining craft supplies from this project to let everyone make their own wall minion (see picture below).  I thought that the guys would skip out on this but turns out it was a fun activity for everyone!  

 can you guess which wall minion is mine (bet its not the one you think)?  Also how funny are those pumpkins??  

can you guess which wall minion is mine (bet its not the one you think)?  Also how funny are those pumpkins??  

 Standing in front of our #DIY minion doors.  The HUBS wanted to be a "lumberjack" Minion πŸ˜‚. Leave a comment πŸ‘‡πŸ½ if you want me to post a tutorial for how to create the HUBS goggles and my minion tshirt.  We DIY'd basically everything at this party haha.

Standing in front of our #DIY minion doors.  The HUBS wanted to be a "lumberjack" Minion πŸ˜‚. Leave a comment πŸ‘‡πŸ½ if you want me to post a tutorial for how to create the HUBS goggles and my minion tshirt.  We DIY'd basically everything at this party haha.

 We β™₯️ our friends.  

We β™₯️ our friends.  

SUPER EASY DIY ENVELOPE LINERS


DIY ENVELOPE LINERS TUTORIAL


NEED

  1. scissors
  2. glue stick
  3. patterned paper/printed cardstock (you can also just print some designs of your own at home like I did)
  4. envelopes

HOW TO

  1. simply trace the outline of your envelope flap and then double it so it makes a diamond shape
  2. cut this shape out in your patterned paper
  3. glue on the back of the patterned paper along the edge and stick in your envelope!

this is SUPER easy and just makes a little mailer more fun and festive don't you think?  The little crafter in me is very pleased :)

SUPER EASY DIY ENVELOPE LINER TUTORIAL CHARISMA SHAH
SUPER EASY DIY ENVELOPE LINER TUTORIAL CHARISMA SHAH

PHOTOGRAPHY

About a year ago I started adding recipes & diy's to what was once my fashion design portfolio.  Suddenly this little blog started, right as I was learning what it meant to be a spouse (still learning this!) and a cook and a designer and well many other things.  I quickly learned that humble iPhone photos could only take me so far, so I started playing around with my Dad's old DSLR (circa 2008).  To this day, I swear by it.

DSLR vs iPHONE

Phones keep getting progressively better camera technology but when I started this site I was still using the iPhone 4S.  Ancient I know!  My instagram was a mess of overly contrasted, grainy photos with unnecessary filters that were distracting rather than enhancing.  Oh, and I really loved those black frames and the Nashville filter (for obvious reasons)!  Although, quite great at the time, the 4S' rear camera was only a mere 8 megapixels to the Canon Rebel T1i's 15 MPs!  On a tiny phone screen or even in the Instagram app, both look pretty great.  However, on a laptop/desktop/computer the doubled resolution is pretty spectacular!  I never knew that you could see each and every facial hair in my brother's scraggly beard!  And so I became addicted to pictures on the DSLR.  

Above:  Left photo taken with iPhone 6, Right photo taken with Canon Rebel T1i.

Today I still use my Dad's DSLR (Canon Rebel T1i).  Well, I think after kidnapping it a couple years ago, its pretty safe to say its mine...right?  Its actually the oldest piece of technology that the HUBS and I own, but it takes wonderful pictures and is very easy to use.  I am obsessed.  If you ever see me with my camera, I am probably knee deep in tall grass taking "ant pictures" like this one below.

 unedited, DSLR photo #nofilter

unedited, DSLR photo #nofilter

 unedited DSLR photo #nofilter

unedited DSLR photo #nofilter

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NEVER GOING BACK

With time, literally thousands of pictures, and lots of experimenting, I have actually started to realize that DSLR photography is SO MUCH MORE than just pointing and shooting.  Seriously y'all these things can do wonders.  

Up until about a year ago all my DSLR pictures were just taken in the the Auto or Landscape setting (including the two pictures above).  But as I was looking at some of my favorite bloggers photos on Instagram, I realized the reason I loved these feeds so much was because their impeccable pictures.  Each was bright, light and airy.  So I figured they were just living in insanely sunny places like LA or Phoenix.  These bloggers knew how to use their DSLR effectively to create these ephemeral vignettes.  

I researched a little bit on photography only to learn that all those settings on the dial of your DSLR are actually SUPER useful.  Manual photography manipulates the natural light present to create gorgeous pictures, something that for the most part can't really be done on a camera phone.  Learning about ISO, shutter speed, and aperture is necessary, but your photographs will be even more stunning.  Look out for another post about how to manipulate these for better photos coming soon!

HANDMADE DIWALI CARDS

Call me old-fashioned but I'm not much of a fan of e-cards.  To me its just not personal enough for family.  Not to mention, why pass up an opportunity to craft something?  A couple years ago, while the HUBS and I were still dating, I had just moved away from my hometown and was really missing family so I handmade some Diwali cards.  They turned out so well that these are essentially round two!  

 yes that is a football lotus diwali card for my brothers :)

yes that is a football lotus diwali card for my brothers :)


HANDMADE DIY DIWALI CARD TUTORIAL


SUPPLIES NEEDED

  1. different colored tissue paper
  2. scissors/xacto knife
  3. cardstock/paper
  4. sharpie
  5. mod podge or glue

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Once you have determined the desired size of your card (when unfolded), cut your card stock.  My cards are 2.5" x 4" folded (so 5" x 8" unfolded).
  2. Designate an inside and outside of the card.  On the inside, draw the fold line (at the half way point).
  3. On the lower inside half, draw your Diwali design (Ganesha, Lotus, Candle, Diya, etc.)
  4. Cut out that design with your scissors or xacto knife.
  5. Now for the fun part, using whatever colors inspire you, tear/cut some tissue paper and start paper mache'ing it to the inside of the card.  You can use glue or mod podge to do this.  
  6. Finally, glue the top of the card to the inside.  Let dry.
  7. Once dry you can write Happy Diwali on the outside or back along with a note if you like!

These are the initial cards I made:

SUPPLIES

  1. cardstock (color of choice)
  2. printer
  3. xacto knife
  4. computer
  5. fabric swatches, scraps, or fabric fat quarters
  6. hole puncher
  7. ribbon

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Find some simple icons like elephants, divas, and/or candles online that would be easy to cut out.
  2. In powerpoint, create two rows of 5 boxes each.  All the boxes should be the same size and aligned with the box below it (see example below).
  3. Within the bottom row of boxes, place the icon or icons of choice.  Leave the top row empty: this will become the back of your tent cards.
  4. Write your greeting underneath.
  5. Print these cards on cardstock.
  6. Using the xacto knife, cut out your icon shapes.
  7. Cut a swatch of fabric to the same size as your card and put it in-between your tent card.  
  8. Punch a hole in the top center and tie some ribbon through.  
 example of what the pdf should look like in PowerPoint

example of what the pdf should look like in PowerPoint

Since Diwali is such a colorful vibrant celebration, I liked using festive bright color combos like teal + orange  I also think this tutorial would be great for kids.  You could have kids color/finger paint on the inside of the card!

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F.R.I.E.N.D.S. FOREVER

A few weeks ago I was pinteresting and looking for some cute kitchen signage/phrasing for an idea I had.  The basic idea was to create some hand-lettered inspired placemats that had cute foodie phrases on them that I could use while hosting formal dinners.  One night, during LOTS of pinterest and google searches for famous food quotes, I was watching my favorite show - FRIENDS.  It was the JOEY DOESNT SHARE FOOD episode.  Suddenly, I had an epiphany - FRIENDS food quotes!!!  My brain was flooding with my favorite food moments from the show, so I picked my 12 favorite and set off to make some placemats!

FYI, I've been dying to share this DIY. 

Incase you can't make these, I am selling a set of 4 of these reversible placemats here!

 keep your mitts off my grub! 

keep your mitts off my grub! 

DIY REVERSIBLE PLACEMATS TUTORIAL

NEED

  1. fabric (2 different types)
  2. sewing machine
  3. thread
  4. heavy interfacing
  5. ruler
  6. photoshop/illustrator
  7. waterproofing fabric spray

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INSTRUCTIONS

  1. the first thing you need to do is determine the desired size of your placemats.  Mine are 12.5" x 16" as a finished product.  
    1. once you pick your size, add half an inch to each side for seam allowance.
    2. EXAMPLE:  for 12.5" x 16" mats my raw fabric pieces needed to be 13" x 16.5"
  2. design your fabric for spoonflower
    1. pick your desired fabric for the mats - I chose "eco canvas"
    2. figure out how many mats can fit in one yard of fabric (I could fit 6 mats/yard based on my desired mat measurements and the fabric size)
    3. using photoshop/illustrator:
      1. mark your placemat template first.  using the margins, measure your scissor/cut line for your mats (this should be the seam allowance measurement).
      2. pick a hand lettered/script font of your choice and type in your quotes.  adjust your font size to fit your mat template.  
      3. see/refer to the screen shot of my photoshop file below for extra guidance!
      4. Upload and order your fabric.  
      5. NOTE:  you can eliminate this step by using the same fabric I designed HERE and HERE.
  3. Choose a coordinating fabric for the other side of the mat and heavy fusible interfacing to help give the mat structure.  Be sure to get enough for the number of mats you plan on making.  I had to buy 2 yards of this second fabric and 4 1/2 yards of interfacing to make these mats.
  4. Cut both fabrics and interfacing according to you seam allowance measurement.
  5. Fusing the interfacing to the lettered fabric using an iron.  Repeat this step for each mat.
  6. To sew these mats:
    1. take the interfacing-fused fabric and the complementary fabric and place them together so that the wrong side of each fabric is inward or touching the wrong side of the other fabric.
    2. fold the outer 1/2 of each fabric inward and pin along the edges.
    3. sew each edge at 1/4".
  7. Once the mats have all been sewn, spray with the fabric protector as per instructions on the can.  This should help prevent stains!
 no matter what happens, we still get cake right??  

no matter what happens, we still get cake right??  

 MY SANDWICH???

MY SANDWICH???

MARBLED CONDIMENT BOWLS

I really enjoyed this DIY because its SO easy.  And the result is an organic, watercolor effect and we all know I LOVE WATERCOLOR.  I mean look how gorgeous!!

NEED:

  1. small ceramic bowls (mine can be found here)
  2. rubbing alcohol
  3. water
  4. plastic tupperware container (that can be discarded)
  5. non gel nail polish colors of choice
  6. toothpick or skewer
  7. paper towel

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. fill the tupperware container with water and set aside
  2. clean your bowls with the alcohol.  let dry completely
  3. have a napkin/paper towel ready:  pour a couple drops of nail polish into the water. swirl with the skewer (set skewer on napkin). immediately dip the surface of the bowl into the water and pull out.  set upside down to let dry.
  4. pick up any remaining polish in the water using the skewer.  repeat entire process for additional bowls.

PAINTED PLATES

I love watercolor.  Especially in organic forms, so when I found some ceramic paints at the local craft store, I figured I'd redesign our salad plates.  When the HUBS and I got married we got some beautiful organic shaped dinnerware from West Elm.  Although he was not convinced we needed to replace his old dowdy plates, he has since become the biggest fan.  That is until I painted them lol.  Now he's unsure again.  But I think they look beautiful!  I especially love how they add some color to the setting.  And we all know how much I love blue + white.  Eventually he'll come around too.

 my first layer!

my first layer!

SUPPLIES NEEDED:

  1. ceramic paint (like this or this)
  2. oven
  3. water

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. make sure your ceramic plates are clean & dry
  2. if you want multiple layers like mine
    1. water down your paint until desired color is reached
    2. pour this onto one side of the plate and slowly move the plate around to create organic shapes & drips
    3. let this dry (will take a couple hours)
  3. once the first layer has dried, add another layer of paint (with less water) and swirl around.  
  4. let this dry completely for four days.
  5. follow the instructions of your individual paint, but most likely you will need to bake the plates at 350F for 30 minutes.  Let them cool.  Your paint is now set and your plates are ready to use.  After you bake them, the plates are dishwasher and microwave safe.    
 finished product after baking!

finished product after baking!

#NOFILTER Beach Hat

I have been so inspired by the Eugenia Kim beach hats.  Their cute and kitschy.  But I can't afford the price tag!  $400+ for a straw hat??  Um no.  Plus I couldn't find one that says #nofilter -my favorite travel hashtag.  So I created my own using some crafty DIY.  Look how cute!!  

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Here's how you can do the same.

SUPPLIES

  1. wide brim straw hat of choice (I bought mine on Amazon)
  2. yarn (Joann/Michaels)
  3. satin pins
  4. thread (same color as yarn or invisible) & needle

INSTRUCTABLES

  1. Choose a phrase or hashtag that you would like to put on your hat and decide on the placement (i.e. where to start and how big).
  2. Push the yarn through a hole near the brim of the hat at the left most position (aka where you want your phrase to start).  Be sure to push the yarn from the top of the hat to the underside and tie a knot (on the underside) of the hat.  This will keep the yarn in place.  
  3. Place the yarn into the first few letters of your phrase and pin them in place.  
  4. Tie a large knot in your thread so that it won't go through the weave of the hat.  
  5. Starting near the yarn knot you made earlier, secure the yarn by sewing the lettering in place using the thread.  Start with your thread on the underside of the hat at the lowest point of the letter.  Go through to the weave to the other side of the hat keeping close to the yarn.  Cross the yarn to the other side at an angle (still on the top of the hat) before going to the underside of the hat.  
  6. Continue this process until you are done with your phrase.  
  7. HINTS:  the shorter the phrase the better!