To Share / The Half Baked Harvest Cookbook

 
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     Good morning! Just wanted to share the gorgeous cookbook my parents got me for Christmas (thanks mom + dad!!). It's by my favorite food blogger, Half Baked Harvest, and I've already had some good use out of it! So far, I've made the spicy cauliflower soup and the salted brioche cinnamon rolls  - and both were easy and so delicious. 

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     I had never made cinnamon rolls from scratch, but they did not disappoint! The hardest part was rolling them tightly enough, but I think with a little more practice it'll be a piece of cake. Now, the next ones on my agenda from the book are the pumpkin gnocchi, a whole wheat nutella challah, and her 30-minute chicken parmesan (a family favorite of ours)!  

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     Part of why the book is so inspiring is the photography. Tieghan's photo's are always gorgeous, but having them in print makes them even better! As a visual person, photos and styling are really what draw me in to a cookbook. I love flipping through this one just to look at the photos! They're that good!

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     Another thing I love about cookbooks is the variety of recipes they can offer that aren't available on Pinterest (which is where I usually pull from). I also like that the recipes are right there in the book, so I don't have to try and remember which Board I Pinned a recipe to (sometimes it really takes longer than it should). Most of all though, what I specifically love about this cookbook is that it's filled with recipes that are fresh and unique, but also are tolerable by Brett, who has a very refined list of food he's a fan of. Nothing wrong with that, he likes what he likes, but I'm the opposite, and will now try and usually love most foods! This created a dinner issue for awhile, but ever since I discovered Half Baked Harvest, I've been able to make dishes that are creative and challenging, but are still approachable to those that find comfort in familiarity. Most of HBH's recipes are cool twists on classic or "basic" meals, which is exactly what I've needed! They aren't too crazy, but they aren't so (for lack of a better phrase) "by the book" that they are boring. Buy cookbooks people! Sometimes the old-fashioned thing can work better for you than the latest technology, so embrace it. 

     Thanks for reading, and have a fun weekend! I'll be back next week with one of the recipes from this book that I mentioned I'm making above (can you guess which one?)!

For Design / Rosewater

 

     Good morning! For this months design appreciation, I looked to a pretty bottle of rosewater that I had acquired for a waffle recipe (coming soon!). It's apothecary inspired packaging is so inspiring!  

       The amber glass bottle, combined with the deco fonts, gives off the look of the Great Gatsby era. 

       Also, I must say that the pink color way is spot on for rosewater. I have a thing for themed packaging!  

     Thanks for reading, and have an awesome weekend! 

To Appreciate / Design

 

      Hi there! While this candle smells amazing, it was really the packaging that got me. The pretty pink triangles and the font are spot on! 

      Not to mention that it's in a pretty lidded jar. All of the heart eyes! 

      Overall, it's the clean lines combined with the scattered shapes that really draw the eye. If you're going to have candles out on display, might as well pick cute ones! Thanks for reading, and have a fun weekend! 

For Design Appreciation

 

     Hi there! I just wanted to share some design love today! I picked up this olive oil awhile ago, and as you may have guessed, I am definitely that person who will pay an extra dollar for the prettier bottle of olive oil or anything that is an everyday essential but is designed well. If I use it all of the time, and have to look at it, that extra dollar is worth it for my visual sanity.

     This bottle was one of the only nice looking bottles of olive oil, that was 100% made from olives. I had recently been informed that most olive oils are made with barely any actual olives, which was disappointing to hear. I was on a mission to find real olive oil that looked nice, and found this gem. Other than their "DCOOP" logo, I fell in love with the clean white packaging and not so offensive font choices.

    Like I said, personally I don't like the logo. It is just very generic looking, and that's not my aesthetic. I let it go though, for the sake of the sleek shaped bottle and doodled illustrations of planting olive trees featured. It fits perfectly on my kitchen counter, and is pleasing to the eye when placed with my other kitchen essentials that I keep out for everyday use.

     Thanks for reading, and have a fun Monday!

For Design Appreciation

 

       Hi there! Today's Design Appreciation is all about the beautiful packaging of Simply Gum! 

       This gum is the perfect example of clean, modern design. To start, the simple white background set against a contrasting black font and the photo of ginger keeps the focus on the natural flavor you are getting. 

       I also love the square box shape. It sets the gum apart from the usual rectangle packaging of almost any other brand of gum.  

      Lastly, the ingredients and nutrition factors on the backside of the packaging are fairly innovative. The ingredients being so few makes for a fun design challenge. How do you fill space with little to say? Well they do it in the very cool way of having small blocks of the 6 ingredients photographed and presented in a neat line, while listing them below. This way, you can literally see what you are getting, which is so rare nowadays! All that's left is a small nutrition box, and you've got "simply gum". One last cool feature I didn't think to photograph was the gum wrappers they include seperately inside to deposit your used gum in before tossing! So genius! 

      Thanks for reading, and enjoy this snowy (at least here in the Midwest!) Sunday!  

For Design Appreciation

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     Hi there! For today's design appreciation, we have my favorite gold heart stickers from Knot & Bow. With the gifting season coming up, it seems appropriate that we look at one of my favorite embellishments to the presents and cards I give. Check out this pretty product below!

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     Knot & Bow's branding appeals to my whimsical side. Much like my taste in clothes, my taste in design, and most things, varies. I'm drawn to a lot of different styles, and the mix of fonts in this design is feminine and fun. 

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     I also love that the design feels handmade, with the use of stamps and hand lettering. The stickers themselves are just too cute. I love using them to seal envelopes, and to decorate gift wrap. They aren't exactly holiday-centric, but the gold is still special and appropriate this time of year. I recommend adding these to the children's gifts in your life! What kid doesn't love heart stickers?? 

     Thanks for reading, and have a fun Sunday!

For Design Appreciation

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     Hello! For today's design appreciation, we are checking out this pretty bottle of matches from Skeem Designs! Kristen got them for me for my birthday, and part of the reason why is because of the beautiful packaging. 

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      I'm all for modern fonts and design, but I also have a love for classic, vintage design, like these matches. The mix of fonts and gold fillagree are the real standouts.

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       The overall design alludes to Victorian-era pharmacy products, and if these had been made back then, this is probably how the packaging and branding would look. Modern design is great and all, but I'm a firm believer in "if it isn't broken, don't fix it"! Thanks for reading, and have a fun weekend! 

For Design Appreciation

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     Hi there! Today's Art Appreciation has a little twist, in that we are going to start looking at packaging and design for a little bit. Pinterest has opened my eyes to how interesting and beautiful product branding and packaging can be. To start, we have a gorgeously designed chocolate bar from Mast Brothers.  

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      If you aren't into minimalistic design, then it probably doesn't look like much, but to those who are, the clean lines, black + white color pallete, and choice of font all jump out at you.  

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      Mast Brothers are well known for their candy bar design. All cater to the minimalistic aesthetic, and only vary in color ways each season. They are constantly coming out with new collections, all of which are as beautiful as the previous ones. Take a minute today, and search "packaging" + "branding" on Pinterest. You'll find endless inspiration! Thanks for reading, and haves great day! 

For Art Appreciation

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    Good morning! This week's art apprectation is a throwback to a watercolor print I did a couple of years ago. I made it not long after I had Bailey, ya know, when emotions are still high. 

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     I love the sentiment, and it's a true one. You realize it, after having a baby, how little "stuff" actually matters. It's cheesy, but real! 

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      This was a time I was discovering Rifle Paper Co., and pretty folky florals. I still love them, and painting them makes me smile. Now go capture those moments people, and have a great day of rest too! 

To Welcome Fall!

 

     Hi there! Seeing as it's the first day of fall, I thought it appropriate to share some of the designs I've conjured up for my fall/winter collection with Vida! I haven't scanned them in yet, so the finished pieces aren't live on their site, but they will be next month, so get excited!

     First off, I wanted to share the tools I used to create my prints + patterns. My parents got me this watercolor set for my birthday (Bailey destroyed my previous set), and it's amazing! The pigments are beautiful, and I love having a second water tube brush. The set comes with a little mixing tray, and sponges for dabbing your brush dry, both of which are essential features. I also used my other brush pen, but filled with ink instead of water. Ink gave my fox print a much more saturated and even color than watercolors or pen would have. My last tool is a trusty Sharpie, useful in so many ways, but especially for dark lines like in my compass print. Now, onto the art!

      When thinking of what I wanted to create for this new season, I thought first of the colors I associate with fall + winter. I thought of burgundy, mustard, olive, rust, + plum. Then, I thought of what I love about clothes for the cooler season, and what prints I like to see on items, and went from there! Vida recently added totes as an option for our designs, and I jumped right on that. The compass print above, and the fox print below are meant for a tote design, which is why they're black and white. Obviously, you can have colored bags, I just know that simple black and white designs are the most neutral for graphics, and ultimately will be worn more because they go with more things. I intend to use the plum floral pattern on a silk blouse, which I think will turn out gorgeous!

     The fox is my favorite graphic, but I'm partial to all things fox, so this probably isn't shocking. This time of year is the easiest to incorporate them into everything, since for some reason they are associated with fall. I will probably end up ordering this tote when it's available, or asking for it for Christmas! I don't typically buy my own designs, but I don't think I'll be able to resist. Thanks for reading, and watch this space for the new designs when they are available next month!

For Art Appreciation

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     Hello! For today's art appreciation, we have a card from Mary Meyer. If you haven't noticed, I buy pretty cards and then don't use them for their intended purpose. I'll typically hang them up as a print, because they're too pretty not to!  

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      Kristen actually picked this up for me in New York when she visited. She and I have really similar tastes in design, so she always gets me stuff that I love. 

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    Another cute logo! Sometimes people don't realize how important their logo is to what their brand is trying to say, but designers and illustrators obsess over it. I hand lettered mine and it fits with my brand because it's my own personal handwriting. Aesthetic is a big factor in having a brand identity, and a simple one, like Mary Meyer's, is always a good choice. Thanks for reading, and have a great Monday off tomorrow!!

For Lettering

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     Hi guys! I'm at the lake currently, but I wanted to share this on-point quote from Justina Blakeney. As a blogger/artist/designer, it can be really tough to draw the line between what's an original idea and an idea inspired by someone else's work. Is it still original thought, even if someone else has already thought the same thing? Sometimes you just aren't sure, but that's what being authentic is all about. As long as you inject yourself into that project, it will shine through, and thus be true to you. Thanks for reading! 

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For Art Appreciation

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     Hi guys! This week's art appreciation subject is a card from Luck Hprse Press in New Jersey. Kristen picked it up from Poppy for my birthday, and I love it! 

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      It fits my personality pretty well, me being a positive person. I love the hand design as well, and that's it's in black and white.  

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      Their logo is so cute! I'm a big fan of florals and love seeing them incorporated into logos. You can tell they care about detail, just from that! Thanks for reading, and have a great Sunday! 

To Celebrate!

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     Hello there! I've got a bit of news this morning! Back story: Vida contacted me a couple of weeks ago, asking me to submit artwork to create my own collection of apparel and scarves. I jumped at the chance and haven't looked back. You can now purchase my tops and scarves (pictured below) here!

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     I chose my favorite pieces I've done in the past year, featured at the top of the page, and Bailey even helped by doing the splatter design in water color with me! I couldn't be more excited, and can't wait to share more and wear the designs myself. More photos and products to come! Thank you for your support and have a great Monday!

Weekly Moodboard, #26

     Good morning! I have a lot of things planned for the weekend, both projects and hang outs with my friends. I'm making cubano sandwiches for a couple of friends on Friday, and I'm getting coffee with another on Saturday. I plan to rock my rust dress and white sneakers, like the girl below, on at least one of those occasions. The projects I'm doing are almost all related to overhauling our office, such as bookends and refreshing a woven basket I have with some paint! The last DIY I'm doing is a little Mother's Day present I'm making for myself, a coconut rose scrub. It's my third Mother's Day on Sunday, and I can't wait to have a little picnic with Brett and our little one. Have a great weekend, and happy Mother's Day to all the mommies out there!

Weekly Moodboard, #25

     Hi guys! This weekend, I plan to live the simple life. Organizing the office, a spa day with Cat, and staying in my new pajama set, similar to the one below, are all on the agenda. As is taking more photos of and with Bailey. My lettering project for the week is to make a print similar to the one from Rifle Paper Co., but with the saying "maman sait mieux" (mama knows best, in French), so that will be completed this weekend. Last on the list is making mother/daughter flower crowns for an upcoming DIY post! To say I'm excited about it is the definition of an understatement. Prepare for a lot of cuteness coming your way. Have a great weekend!

Weekly Moodboard, #24

     Hi guys! This is such a fun weekend! Our town has two festivals back to back, the first being Columbia's brand new literary festival, and you can bet I'll be there. The second is the always fun Earth Day festival, which I go to show support for the environment, but mostly to eat, because every food truck in town is there. It's going to be in the 80's, so I'm breaking out my favorite off-shoulder blouse to stay cool. Also, I plan on making a huge batch of mango salsa on Friday, that will probably be eaten by Saturday. It's addictive, and the recipe will be on the blog soon! The only real projects for the weekend are making a couple of hanging planters for our office, and doing some shoots with Kristen. I'm working on a couple of non-blog related things too, such as practicing my hand lettering for 100 days straight, and putting together a photo project of Bailey. The project is essentially a group of 9 photos I'm going to take each month of Bailey for a year. The photo theme's are in the link below from A Cup of Jo, and I loved them so much, I decided to create this challenge for myself! I can't wait to get started. Have a great weekend!

Weekly Moodboard, #23

     Hi guys! It's the weekend, and this one happens to be a little monumental. I started the three day potty training process with Bailey yesterday! It's going fine so far, considering she hates being wet at all. She even begs to take her t-shirt off if it gets a drop of water on it, so that's kind of playing out in our favor. That being said, we don't really have plans this weekend. I'm doing a couple of shoots for the blog, which include the coasters and lemonade pictured below. Mostly I just plan on finishing One Hundred Years of Solitude in between trips to the potty with Bailey. Hopefully we can get outside a little bit though, because it will be in the 70's all weekend and I'm dying to wear some shorts and my new sandals from Charlotte Russe, which are very similar to the Steve Madden's below. Wish me luck and have a great weekend!

Weekly Moodboard, #22

     Hi guys! This weekend will be slightly busy, since I have about 5 shoots to do, a doctors appointment, and a few errands to run. I plan to live in cute, comfy clothes and my Adidas Superstars. One of the projects I'm shooting is for a DIY Post next week! I'm going to whip up some gold planters in a few sizes, much like the ones from Urban Outfitters featured below. I also plan to shoot a delicious whole wheat veggie breakfast pizza, and then proceed to eat all of it this weekend. We plan to start refreshing our outdoor space as well, seeing as it's about to be grilling season. Last, but not least, we are going to go through Bailey's cold weather clothes and pack up all of those adorable boots and long sleeve tops. It's about time though, because she keeps pulling out all of the clothes I've set aside to go through and covering her room in them. Yup, it's definitely time. Have a great weekend!