Friday, June 29, 2012

#43: New Fairview Place Products

This has been a very productive month in cranking out the new products for Fairview Place. I was even commissioned to make a felt Southern BBQ dinner set (above), which I just love to pieces. 

Thanks to Hollywood and Michelle over at Kitsch for the great Breakfast Set idea, this is another favorite I can't believe took me so long to make!
Between Kitsch, The Knapsack and my online shop, you can find all these must-haves. If for some reason you can't find what you're looking for, lemme know and I'll be happy to make your desired piece ASAP!

Chocolate chip, peanut butter and iced sugar cookies came at the beginning of June when I decided I needed some more smaller, easier pieces to throw in the mix. I'll definitely be making the sugar cookies in different shapes for holidays and icing colors for girls and boys.

The banana split set (another 92 Days of Summer cross-offs), is the perfect addition for Summer time and came together really easy... Can also customize with whatever flavors your little tummy craves.

The Fruit Basket was inspired from the plastic container I got my strawberries in at the Farmer's Market. And the Italian Feast idea came from my friends Doug and Krissi (we'll leave it at that).

I'm tackling the second annual 92 Days of Summer list.
See the full post and list here and comment if you want to help me cross a off a few!

Thursday, June 28, 2012

#44) Freebie: Thrifty Thursdays

Inspired for the 100 degree temperatures (or cactus temps as Mike and I call them) coming this weekend, I created a shirt from just two materials I had in my stockpile of crafting goods. You can make this shirt or dress in less than 15 minutes, or both in less than a half hour. Go ahead, try it, I dare you! I'm also going to count this for a freebie on my 92 Days of Summer list I'm (slowly) conquering.

What you'll need:
Elastic (mine was 1/2" wide)
about a yard of fabric (more or less depending on your size)
sewing machine

What you do:
1. To figure out the size to cut your fabric, first measure around your chest, right below your armpits. Add 10-15" to that number It's a big gap because some might like their shirt tighter and some might like it to have more pleats, it's up to you. So, my fabric measured about 38"x25". (Although, if you're making the dress, you'll add more like 15"+ so the dress will fit over your hips.)
2. With right sides together sew the two short sides together, creating your back seam.
3. Create a hem at the top of the shirt, making sure your elastic will fit through the casing you're creating. Sew down, leaving an 1" gap to insert the elastic.
4. To feed the elastic through the casing, attach a safety pin at one end, until it comes out the other end. You can pre-cut the elastic (the measure you took below the armpits, minus 3" or so), or you can put the top on and cut to what feels right to you. Sew the two elastic ends together.
5. Hem the bottom of the shirt and you're finished!

 The pattern as a dress!
Gathered with a belt from Forever 21.

 I'm tackling the second annual 92 Days of Summer list.
See the full post and list here.

#68: Smoothies

I made my first smoothie of the Summer this week. It was pretty good and good for you, not to mention I was able to use some of my leftover blackberries from the Farmer's Market (yes!). Stay tuned for more delicious recipes to come.

What you need:
1 cup (skim) milk
4-5 mint leaves
6-8 blackberries
1 frozen banana
1 tsp honey

What you do:
1. Blend the mint and milk until frothy.
2. Add the rest of the ingredients and pulse to your desired consistency.
3. Stick in a straw and enjoy!

 I'm tackling the second annual 92 Days of Summer list.
See the full post and list here.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

#27: Make Mussels

I've only ever made mussels once before and that must have been more than four years ago. I've been craving seafood lately so I made a run to the Grand Mart last night and bought some fresh mussels and veggies. I'm pretty happy with the outcome (and so was Mike), so we'll consider this a success!

What you need:
3 cloves garlic, minced
3 green onions, chopped
1 tbsp olive oil
1 medium tomato, chopped
2-3 mushrooms, chopped
1 lb mussels
1/2 can beer (whatever you fancy, I actually used Miller Lite)
lots of fresh cracked pepper and salt
a pinch of sugar
water cress

What you do:
1. Scrub the mussel and place in a bowl with ice cubes and water (make sure those babies stay shut!).
2. Saute the garlic and onions in the oil for five minutes, until fragrant.
3. Add in the beer, tomatoes, mushrooms, salt, pepper and sugar. Let simmer for a few minutes and then add the mussels.
4. The mussels will cook quickly, about 5-8 minutes. You'll know when all the shells have opened and the meat inside has cooked. Remove any unopened shells and discard.
5. Place a handful of (washed) watercress in a bowl and pile on the mussels with a generous portion of the broth.

 What I made Mike for dinner since he isn't much of a mussels guy... Grilled tomato-basil pork loin with pan-fried potatoes. Note to self: Three pans on the mini stove results in a pan full of potatoes on the floor.... good times...

I'm tackling the second annual 92 Days of Summer list.
See the full post and list here.

Monday, June 25, 2012

#18: Reconnect with Friends

It's been a year since I saw my friend (and at one time mentor) Krissi, and what better way to catch up than with a wedding in Charlottesville? Our former Link editor got married at the UVA chapel with a lovely reception at the Cliffton Inn. It was the first Sunday Brunch wedding I've ever been to, but it was charming, relaxed and just Brianne's style.


We met on Saturday for nachos, got gelato, did a little shopping and did dinner at The Whiskey Jar in downtown. Every time I visit Charlottesville I love it a little more. There are so many great places to eat, cute places to chill, unique shops to peruse and the mountains in every background are just perfect. Honestly, I would move there in a heartbeat.

Sadly, this is the only picture I took of Krissi and I together...our place cards at the wedding. How does that happen? We're planning a NYC get-together some time later this Summer and I promise to get photos then, ha.

And finally, one of the (many) highlights of the wedding... A lavender martini! It's a Cliffton Inn original, but I will figure out how to make them and have them at least once this Summer. So, #18, you have been crossed off the list!

I'm tackling the second annual 92 Days of Summer list.
See the full post and list here.

Music Monday

Friday, June 22, 2012

Finally Friday!

Kitsch photo of local singer, songwriter
Skye Zentz playing with some
Fairview Place goods.

It's been a long, fun and exciting week.

The temperatures have finally surpassed 85 degrees, unfortunatley are much closer to 100 than I'm ready for quite yet.

I actually went into the office a couple times this week to work, and believe it or not, I enjoyed it!

Some delicious creations were added to the ever-growing handmade stock at Fairview Place.

We got to spend more than four hours with the nephew yesterday. He gets more awesome every time :)

AND a few products were featured in this cute photo shoot over at Kitsch.

I'm looking forward to this weekend's road trip to Charlottesville with my old pal Krissi for some winery fun and a brunch wedding on Sunday.

If you haven't checked out the new additions at the shop, please do. And lastly, Kitsch is offering a slew of classes in July, a must-do if you're in the Hampton Roads area.


Thursday, June 21, 2012

Thrifty Thursdays

I saw these adorable little earrings on Etsy and thought about the gobs of bias tape I have collected throughout the years. Then I thought, what an easy and inexpensive DIY for today! This project cost me absolutely nothing, but even if you had to buy everything you'd probably spend about $6 and have 40 pairs of earrings (of the same color since bias tape comes in 2-yards of one hue).

You'll need some bias tape, a hot glue gun, earring studs and backs. The yellow and white tape is vintage - from my Grandmother. And the teal is from a package project I did back in January and is from South Africa!

The steps are easy. 1) Cut two strands of bias tape 4-6 inches long (depending on how thick your tape is and how big you want your earrings). 2) Tie a knot at one end. 3) Put some glue on the tape and wrap around in any direction. 4). Hot glue the earring studs onto the back of the earring.

And voila! You have less than 10 minutes!

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

#63: Banana Split

You thought I meant the real deal? I can't keep my bikini body by indulging in all the food-related items on the Summer list, ha. Instead, I just make them from felt. You can find this sweet treat over at the Fairview Place shop!

This set was surprisingly super easy to make and will be easy to customize for future customers. Best part is I found the banana boats at Wine and Cake for only 49 cents a piece! What a score!

 I'm tackling the second annual 92 Days of Summer list.
See the full post and list here.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Pizza Party

I was having a few people over so I decided to make some mini pizzas for a light snack. They are more like flatbreads since none of them actually have pizza sauce, but I made some bruschetta for dipping. I was pretty please with the way they all came out...and the best part? I already had everything I needed to bake (including the herbs from the garden) – that's a pretty rare occasion for me!

So here are my mini pizza combinations:
  1. Rosemary & Mushroom: small can of mushrooms, handful of fresh rosemary (chopped), feta, parmesan, salt and pepper
  2. Asparagus & Red Onion: 4-5 asparagus (cut into 1-2" pieces), thinly sliced red onion, pepperjack cheese and red pepper flakes
  3. Pear & Mint: 1 thinly sliced pear (I used canned), handful of fresh mint (minced), sugar and parmesan 
  4. Basil & Garlic: Handful fresh basil (chopped), 4-5 cloves thinly sliced garlic, feta and lots of fresh cracked pepper and salt

And for the bruschetta...
Combine one can of diced tomatoes (drained), basil (chopped), 2-3 cloves fresh garlic (minced), a tsp of balsamic, salt and lots of pepper. Let it chill in the fridge for at least 30 minutes before serving so all the flavors fuse together.

Monday, June 18, 2012

Music Monday

Library of Congress image

It's official, Summer is here. And here's the music for it.

Sunday, June 17, 2012

#5: Meet the Nephew

Thomas James Mars has finally arrived, fashionably late of course. He was born on Friday, June 15 at 12:50 a.m. TJ weighed in at 8 lbs and 15 oz and is 21 inches long!
We were already hypothesizing what sports he would play, since he'll be the tallest, leanest, most athletic (cutest, smartest - you get the point) boy in his class :) 

Uncle Mike looks like a natural, right?

Making faces at each other.

We ended up staying for three hours and got to see him eat, a diaper change, a couple burps, his loudest cry yet and Uncle Mike and I both got to hold him...quite a productive visit, I'd say! We can't wait to spend more time with the little nephew this Summer (and at least the next 25 years). So stay tuned for more photos and stories!

I'm tackling the second annual 92 Days of Summer list.
See the full post and list here.

Saturday, June 16, 2012

#30: Throw a Party

Honestly, this wasn't the kind of party I was expecting to throw. Maybe a holiday progressive like we did a few years back or a 4th of July party (which we could still do). But my girlfriends talked me into a Slumber Party. Nevertheless, I hosted this party and all 12 girls (quite the event for our tiny apartment) had a blast!

I made spinach dip, creamy feta dip and black bean dip (recipes coming soon, I promise!). I made this awesome veggie hummus tart and had lots of vegetables and carbs for dipping. I needed to keep the "heavy h'orderves" easy since we were also expecting a baby and a hospital run at any moment (don't worry, not from me, Mike's sister-in-law). Lisa also made delicious Oreo cake.

I also used some old flower vases (which are rarely used as such) as snack decanters. I filled them with banana chips and cranberries, peanuts and pretzels. It's a more hygenic – and cuter – way to present a party mix, thanks Martha. I asked everyone to bring a bottle of wine to share and also made some sun tea with mint ice cubes.

As for the actual content of party, host one yourself and find out! These aren't the typical "toy parties" you watch in the movies, I promise. I mean, it was fun and we spent the entire time laughing and joking, but it's also pretty educational and very entertaining.

So, a party has been thrown! #30 is off the list.

I'm tackling the second annual 92 Days of Summer list.
See the full post and list here.

Friday, June 15, 2012

#89: Eat Pop Rocks

I put this one on the list because I hadn't tasted Pop Rocks in years and absolutely loved them as a kid. They weren't as delicious as I had remembered...imagine that. Mike and I agreed Tropical Punch was the best of the bunch. And now #89 has been crossed off the list.

I'm tackling the second annual 92 Days of Summer list.
See the full post and list here.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Thrifty Thursday

I know you haven't bought a Father's Day card, so lucky for you, here's a free one! Simply print it out, cut along the grey lines and fold in half. Makes a 4x6 card. For a DIY envelope, click here.

#32: Against Me!

I kept have dreams Wednesday morning I missed the show, which doesn't make sense considering the venue is only two blocks away. Regardless, I made to the show and Against Me! totally rocked it, not that I expected anything less.
I'm tackling the second annual 92 Days of Summer list.
See the full post and list here.

Monday, June 11, 2012

#64: Fireworks

 Voila, fireworks! It was quite a picturesque evening with the fireworks bursting
over the sails of the sailboats.

I'm tackling the second annual 92 Days of Summer list.
See the full post and list here.