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DIY Quote Valentines

29 Jan

IMG_9322The tradition of sending valentines combines two of my favorite things in the world – correspondence + paper goods. Although there are tons of gorgeous options to buy in stores, I love making my own. This year I decided to bring back a design I used back in 2008, long before I had a camera on my cell phone to snap a picture of the results unfortunately.  I love being able to personalize each with favorite quotes, ink embellishments, and pretty paper scraps I’ve collected from old calendars, catalogs, and magazines.
IMG_9311First I gathered together some white card stock, my pretty paper scraps, a glue stick, and my favorite fine-tip black ink pen. I cut some hearts from a Tiffany’s catalog and a Victoria’s Secret “Pink” mailer, and tore out some of my favorite pages from a 2012 Audrey Hepburn desk calendar.
After I glued my paper elements onto the card stock and let them dry a bit, I embellished the hearts with my pen. Then I just collected some of my favorite quotes on love, friendship, and romance and wrote them out in my best, most flourished-looking cursive. I’ll write my personalized messages on the reverse side before popping into some envelopes I “borrowed” from a huge box of generic thank you notes I got at Target a while back for like, $5 on clearance. Easy!

Christmas Crafting

17 Dec
My mom is far and away the most creative person I know. Long before Pinterest and DIY became cool, she had my siblings and I making Christmas ornaments and entering craft fairs. She’s the reason I thought to artfully strew our ugly brass dining room chandelier with evergreen clippings, berries, and pine cones sourced from anywhere I saw anything worth gathering. And she’s definitely the reason I was outside freezing my behind off yesterday, making “ice lanterns” with bits of greens and berries for our party this Saturday! She taught me to think creatively and find beauty everywhere.
I think that’s why I have such a strong association with crafting around the holidays. We were always making something together as a family like decor for the house, gifts for friends and family, or just decorating paper gingerbread men for the Advent calender. Two of my favorite childhood projects involved painting reclaimed bricks to look like cute little row houses which I sold as door stops and garden décor. The other was a painted clay pot angel for Christmas. I made dozens to give as gifts. To me, it’s just not Christmas unless there is crafting.

// Photos: clockwise from top left — One of my ice lanterns / our evergreen chandelier / our second-ever gingerbread house / the anniversary bouquet that was re-purposed for some of the previously mentioned Christmas projects (see the berries and greens?!)

Fun ways to address holiday cards

10 Dec


I’ve always loved hand-lettering. I did some of my best work on my science and math book covers in high school in fact. Today I make better use of my skills to hand-address holiday card envelopes with beautiful lettering for family and friends. One of my favorite new tricks this year is using a white colored pencil on red envelopes., similar to the example above — just inverted.

We’re probably going to print address labels this year just to simplify because of the baby, but for the few I do by hand myself, here are a few of the samples that are inspiring me:

Holiday card addressing inspiration

(1/2) Love this mix of modern, embellished and flourished calligraphy and (3) mod, graphic hand-drawn lettering

Holiday hand lettering inspiration

(4) Love this haphazard, wild look, like a kid learning calligraphy and (5) very soft, loopy cursive —so delicate and feminine.

Little Book of Lettering

If you’re looking for even MORE inspiration, check out my design board on Pinterest or pick up this beautiful book, Little Book of Lettering. It’s filled with gorgeous ideas that are sure to inspire you. Heck, even this cover is giving me a million ideas.