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Alice in Wonderland Party

It was my two year old’s birthday this past weekend and I had big plans for the Alice in Wonderland party theme I wanted to do to help celebrate her special day.  I tend to go all out for birthdays.  I feel like it is the one day of the year that is all about you.  So you should be spoiled, celebrated and be allowed to mostly do what you like.  My being out of commission however kind of threw a wrench in the plans.  Thank god for family and friends as they are the ones that helped pick up the slack and helped make the party happen.  I also bought more then I normally would.  I am more of the Martha Stewart ilk and try to make everything myself.  Unfortunately, that was not possible so I had to let it go, haha.

The invitation I ordered on Etsy through Beca at Paper Tinker.  It was a down-loadable pdf so it was fast and I could print it on whichever card stock I wanted.

(peaberrydesigns)  -  Alice in Wonderland Invitation - PROOF -

I even managed to get the family into character.  We were a little concerned it might freak Amelia out, but she was fine.  I dressed as the Queen of Hearts, of course.  Most of my costume is stuff I had around the house.  The hearts I got from the Dollar Store and attached them to a black dress with double sided tape.  The only new thing was the hat which I purchased in Disney a few weeks ago.

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Chris was a trooper and became the Mad Hatter for a couple hours.

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Our little Ava became the bunny who was late for a very important date.

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We didn’t have a proper watch for her so I made a steampunkish one from a Tim Holtz Pocket Watch.

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Even my friend Brittany came as one of the flowers.

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Now for the guest of honour, Alice (aka Amelia).  I ordered a tutu dress from Carly at Cutie Patootie Designs.  There was nothing in the shop big enough so I contacted her and she made it custom for me.  She was awesome and based right here in Ottawa.  I just had to drive over and pick it up.  Unfortunately, Amelia wanted nothing to do with it at the beginning of the party.  About half way through, after she had insisted on wearing a t-shirt she got as a gift, she wanted to put it on.

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All of the cake and candy probably had something to do with it but once she got it on she was SO excited and hyper.

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She rolled around in it forever, SO cute!

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Now, the food, which wasn’t very healthy, mostly candy and sweets.  It was a tea party after all.  The kids loved it (not so much the parents :).

The mushroom cookies I ordered from Boko Bakery in Ottawa.  They were delicious!!

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I ordered some images off of Etsy as well.  I wanted some “eat me”, “drink me” tags and some goodies for the kids to do crafts with.  I got them from Amelia at Cherrypink Prints.  Here is a sign in action with the lemon squares.

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And with the cupcakes I made.

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Here is Amelia’s special cupcake with her #2 candle.

Alice in Wonderland Party

These Cheshire Cat tails I truly made from scratch though.  I saw a picture of them on Pintrest without instructions so I just winged it.  I put three marshmallows on a stick, covered it with pink melted chocolate and added the purple icing stripes.  Sounds easy doesn’t it?  It wasn’t, haha.  Took forever.  I had to bring a chair to the stove because I couldn’t handle the standing for too long.  Maybe if I was feeling better it wouldn’t have been so bad.

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Here are the signs I put on our banister as you came in the door.

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Last but not least, I got print-ables to make a banner from Cherrypink Prints to hang on the mantel.

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Man, that was a long one!!!  Hope this has inspired you to have an Alice in Wonderland party of your own.

Vintage Inspired Lifestyle Marketplace

Chris and I are on our annual snowboarding trip to Vermont.  I am currently in Stowe as I type this, SO lucky aren’t I?  We are having a great time except we are both a little sick so couldn’t hit the mountain today :(  We are hoping tomorrow will be the day.  Anyway, one of the reasons I love coming is our stop in Burlington on the way to hit the antique stores.  I just had to share this AMAZING place I discovered in Burlington called the Vintage Inspired Lifestyle Marketplace.  It closes at 5 and I was totally trying to rush to get there before it closed.  It was a must see on my list and boy was I not disappointed.

Check out the little nook above the door, I couldn’t wait to go in.

First thing I saw when I walked in were these awesome yard sticks.

Then these paintings which are by a local artist Sienna Fontaine.  I found out she was having a show there that night and they would be open till 9.  We didn’t need to rush after all.  I wish we would have had more time to stay for it.

This place was filled with so many unique things and there was something for everyone.  Here is a part of the vintage clothing section.

A view of the main room as you walk in.

Chris had kind of gotten ahead of me as I was going slow and taking it all in.  It was total sensory overload as I was amazed by all of the cool stuff (We don’t have stores like this in Ottawa, btw).  He came back to get me because there was something I needed to see and man was he right.

I am totally in love with old letterpress wood printing blocks.  I had picked some up in Paris years ago and have never come across them in person again.  I couldn’t believe the stash she had.  I wanted them all!!!  I settled for enough to spell PEABERRY (and a couple more which I will share at a later time).

There were so many pretty little vignettes everywhere, it was hard to know where to look next.

Old globes and maps are things that we share a love of and there were plenty of those to look at.

More eye candy.

I picked up a block and a couple other little goodies to take home.

The owner, Mary (whose focus for the shop is “vintage goods for an inspired lifestyle”) was the sweetest.  We complimented each other on our great taste and became fast friends.  We exchanged e-mails and she agreed to hook me up via mail if I needed anything as I couldn’t possibly have taken everything home that I wanted.  (We wouldn’t have been able to eat for the rest of the weekend, hahaha!)

Although, Chris did tell me about these ceramic dolls that I missed and it sounds like they would have been perfect for little assemblages.  We may have to stop there again on our way home, tee hee.

Word of the Year for 2013

It is time for my word of the year but first off, I wanted to say HAPPY NEW YEAR and a huge thank you to all my subscribers and followers.  You are helping my dreams come true and are deeply appreciated.

I am a part of this amazing group of “Flyers“ and some of us have decided to do a blog hop to share our word of the year.  So, if you are starting with me, grab yourself a warm beverage and do the tour, I promise it will be worth visiting all of these talented ladies.

Choosing a word of the year may seem a little more difficult then having New Year’s resolutions, but I think not.  It is a good way to keep you focused and on task throughout the year.  Although, deciding on which word to go with was a little harder then I expected.  My motto which has come to me over the last couple of years is “Follow Your Bliss”.

(I finally got to do some painting today so I thought I would paint my motto and word of the year for when my studio space is ready)

In the past (prior to discovering mixed media) when people asked what I did for a living I would say, “I’m a paralegal, but I have yet to find my bliss”.  I am happy to report that I no longer say that.  My current answer is “My day job is as a paralegal, but I am an artist”.  It has taken me a while as it felt almost arrogant to say that, like “who do I think I am??”  Through the love and support of my man and friends, I have finally claimed ownership of my lot in life and man, does it feel great.  It has been a busy but amazing year and I am hoping that 2013 will be even better.  But I digress.  I kind of wanted to let you know where I was coming from when I say I wanted to pay homage to my motto and truly follow my bliss (practice what I preach, so to speak).  I kind of knew what I wanted it to be but couldn’t find a “pretty” word to my liking.  I then received my ”Daily Truth” from the Brave Girls.

“Dear Courageous Girl,

When clarity finally comes, it is so important to not be talked out of it by voices that are not our own. So often, when we are making difficult choice, other people, other forces and other messages are completely opposed to the decision that is best for our own life. Change is uncomfortable, and we resist change in others often as much as we resist change in ourselves.

Sometimes we just have to keep sacred things to ourselves until our resolve, decision or goal is not feeling so wobbly and timid and fragile. Sometimes we have to give it time to grow and to become strong and solid and clear before it is safe enough to share it.

Remember the peace you felt when the decision was finally made. Remember the clarity you felt when you knew the answer for sure. Remember that you knew it was right. What made it muddy was the outside opinions, preferences and judgments that really have no business making these kinds of decisions for your one beautiful, precious life.

Stay strong, dear girl. You know the way to go. You know what to do.
It won’t be easy, but it will be worth it.

You are so very loved.
xoxo”

So, after reading that, flowery or not, I chose CHANGE.  I have realized that it does not have to be “pretty”, it is what I want for myself and my family in the next year.

(Chris made the awesome aluminum word plate for me and below is the entire painting.  Don’t you just love the felt rolls?)

Some of my favourite CHANGE quotes:

“Life is change.  Growth is optional.  Choose wisely.”

“Growth means change and change involves risk, stepping from the known to the unknown”

“We must become the change we want to see”

Now to make a -to do- list to help myself achieve all of this great change.  I think I might also make myself a bracelet with my word as a daily reminder.  Look out world, here I come!!!

Don’t forget to head over and visit the talented mixed media artist Michelle Hill and check out what her word is.

Full Circle Exchange

I just wanted to share this amazing program called the Full Circle Exchange with you on this chilly winter night.  I thought it might warm you all up from the inside.  Such an amazing thing this program is.  One of those little programs that helps restore your faith in humanity.  Their mission is to empower women and whole communities to rise above poverty through economic opportunities that are sustainable and dignified.  Here is a little introduction (The colours and scenery are so vibrant).

The lovely and talented Melody Ross is teaming up with them to design a collection for the exchange.  She will be heading to Manila to teach “her SOUL RESTORATION curriculum as part of the Full Circle Women’s Empowerment Initiative to the girls in the Hope House as well as providing hands on training and skills to create a beautiful NEW COLLECTION to empower them economically so they are able to go to college as well as support their families and never feel trapped again”.  Talk about job satisfaction and truly making a difference in people’s lives.  Wow, so envious.  One day I hope to make such a contribution to society.

I am truly looking forward to her collection but in the meantime, check out a few of my favourites amongst the beautiful bags these women have created.

Bali BrownAmazon Shoulder BagVillage Clutch "Soiree Collection"

Works of art.  I wish I had of discovered them prior to handing over my wish list to Chris because one (or all :) would have definitely made the list.  If any of you have any shopping money left (I know, I know, ya right, haha) or have a special someone with a birthday coming up, head on over to the Full Circle Exchange website and make a purchase.  It is for an amazing cause.  They also have beautiful baskets and amazing looking coffee and chocolates.

 

 

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30 Craft Market – Peterborough

We are in Peterborough for my hunnie’s family Christmas and I found out about a new and local craft fare in the area so I just had to drag my mother in law there :)  It is the 30 Craft Market and no item at the fair was over $30, making local handmade wares affordable for everyone.

Great idea!!  It also helped me get closer to my goal of buying almost all handmade or local gifts for Christmas this year as I bought a few gifts from there.  So many awesome fabrics.  I bought this cute little clutch.

From The Little Bird Designs.  Check out the huge button on the curtain behind her, adorable!!!

I also got this gorgeous roll up paintbrush holder.  I kind of want to keep it for myself, haha.

It was made by Amanda of Lemon Seed Creations.

She also had these journal covers that I really liked.  Must of been the corduroy.

My FAVOURITE table was Rabbit & Bumble.  I could have bought a ton of stuff from them, for myself.

Check out these adorable mushrooms, LOVE them.  All the felt and owls, I had to contain myself, haha.

I did end up buying these felt hand painted letters to label our stockings.  There wasn’t an M for Milah but I got a mushroom one and will add the M to it myself.

How is your Christmas shopping going?

Hermes – “Hearts and Crafts” Documentary

 I just finished watching the French documentary ”Hearts and Crafts” about the amazing people who make HERMES.  The style house began with a simple saddle over 100 years ago and are now producing many coveted women’s fashion pieces.  The documentary premiered last year on the Sundance Channel and I can’t believe it has taken me this long to watch it.  To be honest, it took a while to find it.  I was so incredibly impressed and further realized why designer goods are SO expensive.  All of the painstaking details and time that go into every piece is amazing.

It makes me truly appreciate the pure silk “Les Tambours” Hermes scarf that recently came into my possession.  Thank you to the lady that just appeared at my table at a craft fair asking if I would like some “fabrics” to do with what I pleased.  I said “sure and what I don’t use I shall pass on”.  When I got home and went through the bag, I found this Hermes scarf and nearly fell on my a**.  I feel like this is the universe rewarding me for my dedication to vintage and repurposing as much as I can :)

This was a popular design so was made in many colours.  It is by the designer J. Metz and I think is from 1989.  This isn’t my favourite colour as there is a black and cream one that is super nice but beggars can’t be choosers.

Each colour is silk screened by hand and allowed a month to dry in between layers, a little unbelievable really.  It shall be treasured.

Now for the documentary so you can enjoy it.  It is divided into seven parts but is actually just forty seven minutes in length.  Don’t worry it has English subtitles for those that don’t understand French. I do hope you get a chance to watch, it is impressive.

Hope you all get a chance to be creative this weekend!!!

Weekend Recap

To say my November is busy is a complete understatement.  Teaching, birthdays and craft fairs, I am having a hard time catching my breath but enjoying every minute of it.  This past weekend was a perfect example so I thought I would give a little weekend recap.  Two birthday celebrations and I was in an Art & Craft fair on Sunday.  I have realized that the trick is to be present in the current moment and try not to worry about that never ending to do list (it will always be there :) or what is next on the agenda.

On Saturday I got to spend the afternoon with my girlfriends in the Gatineau Park to celebrate Rachel’s b-day.  We went for a nice hike on the sugar bush trail in Chelsea.

Here we are starting out.

Jen brought her beautiful munchkins.  Made me wish I had of brought my girls.

It was such a gorgeous sunny day.  Here is some bright green moss I found on a tree.  I kind of wanted to take some home to put in my terrarium but wasn’t sure if that was kosher.

I found an old tree leaned on another with a giant knot in it that went through the entire tree.  Super cool.  Would have been nice to take that home too, for my garden, haha.

 We started to get a little cold so figured it was time for some warm drinks.  I was super excited to check out the new coffee shop Biscotti’s but unfortunately they were too busy and there wasn’t enough space for all of us.

So, we went to one of my favourite places, the Chelsea Pub.  They put on a new addition to an old heritage building and did a great job keeping with the esthetic.  Also gives them a lot more space which they greatly needed.

They were all decorated, Christmas is in the air.  Looking forward to decorating our house.

On Sunday, I was in the Sandy Hill’s One & Only Craft Fair (more on that later) and we also celebrated another important birthday, which was our little Ava’s.  Well, she isn’t so little anymore.  She turned 8.  Next thing you know she will be driving off to go hang out with her friends, haha.  Through all of the chaos I wanted to make sure that she got a home baked birthday cake.  It is something I try to do for all of the girls on their birthday.  They at the very least get home baked cupcakes.

I know, pretty sad isn’t it?  It certainly isn’t my best decorating job but Chris thought I was crazy to attempt any of it at all with everything going on.  Here she is while we sing to her.

Finally blowing out the candles as she took her time making her wish.  I wonder what she wished for?????

Well, this post was a little less of my art and more of my soul but one must keep a balance.

Inspiration – Quebec City

I didn’t get a chance do any scrapbooking as I was teaching at a shower for a lovely group of ladies (welcome btw, to my new subscribers :).  There will be more on the shower once I am done the final touches.  They did an amazing job.

In the meantime, I thought I would finally share my inspiring pics from Quebec City from our trip this summer.  Although we were only there one short day & night, I tried to soak up as much history and architecture as I could.  Such a beautiful city.

Even all of the fixtures everywhere were beautiful.

Of course they had horse drawn carriages.  I even saw a bride arriving in one to her wedding.  You could picture the streets being filled with them at one time.

A close up of the antique carriage, which I loved, loved, loved.  Most people were trying to get pictures of the horse, whereas I wanted to get some of the carriage, haha.

I really liked the colouring on this house, especially the teal, always one of my favourites.

Part of the Chateau Frontenac which was bigger then I imagined.

The aged post office sign that I wish I could have taken home with me.

Here we are walking down the cobblestone streets of Old Quebec checking out all the quaint shops and looking for a cool place to eat dinner.

The oldest church in the city or possibley country, I can’t remember which, haha.

Another church and me playing with my camera.

The gazebos on the boardwalk were very big top-esque.

The Chateau as it was getting dark.

More of the gorgeous architecture and statues.

Fixtures at night.  I could imagine these filled with amazing candle light.

The impressive fountain at night.

I dreaded leaving but knew I would be back.  For now I must settle for all the inspiration it has brought me.

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Art in the form of Music – Matt Good Style

It’s funny, as an artist you sometimes forget there are other art forms out there.  Well, I do anyway.  I was fortunate enough to have a couple good friends take me to the Folk Festival here in Ottawa for an early birthday present a little while ago.  We went to see Matt Mays, Matthew Good and Ben Harper.  The main attraction for me was definitely to see Matthew Good.  I love music, all kinds of music but I don’t go to concerts for inspiration.  Not like I would an art show or flea market.  I go to give my mind a break and my soul some nourishment.  Besides being there to just enjoy the music my lovely friend Brittany was covering her first event for MyMusic.com.  She had a media pass and was so excited she could barely stop vibrating.  I was proud and sooo happy for her.

As I was there watching Mr. Good with my giant friend Angelo behind me (protecting me from any potential chaos that might ensue)…

I noticed this curious guy leaning against the fence in front of me, facing away from the stage.  I didn’t much pay attention to him at first but every once in a while he would pull out this notebook and frantically jot things down.  Then, would put it away and continue enjoying the concert until he would have to pull the book out again.

By about the third time I noticed there was not one pen but two attached to the inside, marking his page, as if the fear of being unable to write was too much so he had to have a back-up right at his fingertips.  I just thought it was the oddest thing, to come to a concert, not even look at the artist and be writing in a notebook during the entire thing.  I kind of thought, what a waste.

 

Until I realized he was writing lyrics, or what looked like lyrics to me.  Maybe it was just a poem, but it then all made sense.  He was there to take it in and would get a jolt of inspiration so had to write it down before he forgot.  Art in the form of music – Awesome.  From this point forward I shall watch concerts through different eyes.

 Matt’s acoustic goodness did not disappoint by the way.  Thank you Britt & Angelo!!!

Summer Wedding Details

Hello all, the wedding I have been on about this summer has come and gone.  It was yesterday and boy am I exhausted.  It started with months of preparation, a very early day yesterday of primping, photos, the ceremony then festivities.  Now that it is all done, I feel like I could sleep for weeks, haha.  Thought it would be nice to share a little of the wedding details.  I am all about sharing.

The brides colours were cream, white, navy blue, a touch of green and silver.  It all came together beautifully.  It all started with gorgeous white rose balls at the end of every other church pew.  Unfortunately, I don’t have pictures as we weren’t allowed to take pictures in the church so as not to interfere with the photographer.  Who was amazing by the way.  His name is Serge Roy and he was super nice and laid back.  He even let us girls have a little photo shoot where we were just kind of goofing around at the end of the day before he left.

The florists, Full Bloom Floral Design did a great job with the flowers which were all in greens and whites.  First the jr. bridesmaids and flower girl.  Such cuties if I do say so myself.  The one on the left is my Milah and the other two are my cousin’s daughters (but they are more like my nieces), Cassidy and Amber.

And their bouquets.  Isn’t the silver foliage super cool?

Here are a few of the bridesmaids.  Danielle (all the way from Haiti), Angie and myself.

My cousin Lynne with her pretty smile.

And the stunning bouquet we got to carry.  I just love how natural they look.  I know that sounds kind of stupid as they are flowers, which come from nature, haha, but I am sure you know what I mean.

The gorgeous couple with the bride’s bouquet in the vase in front of them.

There were huge arrangements atop massive glass vases all over the place, very elegant.

Most of the paper items were prepared by yours truly.  The table numbers in progress at my place.  The green card stock was iridescent.

The table numbers in action at the reception.

I also did the seating chart which was framed by a simple Ikea frame but I think it finishes it off perfectly.

The same flower was carried throughout all of the stationary/paper items.

Even into the name cards that were placed at everyone’s seat in front of the favours, which were French Macaroons, yum!

Now for the cake which was beautifully made by Sophie Bifield.

The detailed flowers…

Last but not least, I would be remiss if I didn’t mention the wedding planner and the stellar job she did.  Shannon Kennedy and her lovely assistant Brittany helped bring Stephanie’s glorious vision to fruition all with elegance, patience and a huge smile.  Well done, with our huge crew, I am sure it was not always easy, haha.

I hope having shared some wedding details will help inspire you for your next event!!!

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