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Monday, January 27, 2014

How to: Woodburned Signs

As my mom and I began to think about how we would tackle what seemed to be a giant feat of wedding planning, we started by looking at photos of weddings on pinterest, google, blogs, etc. Once we finally landed on a look I could point to and say "that's it, that's the look I want!" we made a list of specific components we wanted to incorporate for my wedding. One of those elegant, rustic signs.

There are many great signs available on and We decided, however, to try to make our own. Wood burning seemed daunting at first, but it really is a simple method that comes out beautiful!

DIY Whitewashed, Woodburned Sign

You will need:
Wood stain (I used both oak and dark walnut)
an old rag
white paint, diluted
paint brush
unstained slab of wood, any shaped desired
woodburning tool (may be found at craft stores such as Michael's, Hobby Lobby for approx. $15. Print a 40% coupon before you go!)
Twine, tulle, or ribbon if you'd like a hanging sign. Frame or plate easel if you are making a standing sign. 

1. Take your wood outside, and on a safe surface to dirty, rub a thin layer of stain onto the wood using an old rag.

2. Be sure to cover all the nooks and crannies. Allow stain to dry according to instructions on can.

3. Repeat on backside of your wood slab. Add a second coat. I used a darker stain for my second coat to create a medium shade.

4. Once your wood is completely dry, it is time to whitewash it. I used white wall paint diluted with about half part water.

5. The paint should be thin and slightly translucent. If it is too sheer, add a little more paint to your mixture.

6. Allow your wood to dry once more.

7. Using sand paper, carefully distress your wood. You don't want to completely remove the paint, only create a slight aged, rustic look. I sanded the wood a bit rougher along the edges.

8. I had a friend drill holes in the sides of my wood where I wanted thread a string through. Next, write out your text lightly in pencil. If light enough, this can be erased. 

In the mean time, heat up your wood burner. I started out tracing the entire word lightly with the burner to define the lines. Go over your word carefully and slowly with the burner. You could go back at the end and make parts thicker and darker as you desire. I also burned the edges of the sign ever so slightly.

9. To string your sign with tulle, cut a long thin piece of tulle. Push one end through your hole from back to front. with a pencil tip. Tie a fat knot on the end. Repeat on opposite end.

If you like the wood burned look, but aren't up for all the steps, the signs below are now available on my Etsy shop! If you have something specific you'd like to say, contact me for a customized sign!

On a second note...

My friend Cheryl you met last week  at Thecrumbster, is kicking off her DIY wedding series today with a must-read on getting your wedding planning started, and sorting out all those details swimming around in your head as a bride. Check it out: Details, Details, Details!

Saturday, January 25, 2014

Cornmeal Drop Biscuits

When I was about 14, I came across the a booklet of soup and biscuit recipes that looked so good! I tried my hand at making some of them. As far as I can remember, those were the first dishes to really spark my interest in cooking. :) This biscuit recipe has been my go-to and favorite ever since. I love drop biscuits because they are easy to get a nice consistency and don't have to look perfectly shaped.

Cornmeal Drop Biscuits

1 3/4 cups flour
2/3 cup cornmeal
2 tbls sugar
1 tbls baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup cold butter
honey to taste
1 cup butter milk*
*Substitute 1 tablespoon lemon juice or vinegar plus enough milk to equal 1 cup
{I also add tsp of cornstarch to keep my biscuits from getting flat. This is only necessary at high altitudes.}

Heat oven to 450 degrees. Combine flour, cornmeal, baking powder, sugar, and salt in a large bowl. Cut in butter until crumbled.

Add buttermilk and honey; stir only until mixture is just combined. Drop biscuits by spoonfuls on baking sheet. Bake for 8-10 minutes or until golden brown.

 **These can be made minus the cornmeal for a light fluffy biscuit as well. We love to eat cornmeal biscuits with pot roast, but they are also great with just jam for breakfast!

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Hand-made Valentines

February is just around the corner, and with that comes Valentine’s day. I know many people find it to be clich√©, but I absolutely love Valentine’s day! 

For one, red and pink are my favorite colors.

Valentine’s day is my mom’s birthday, so its always a party.

In fourth grade I was voted the class Valentine queen. 

My mom always made me a handmade Valentine each year. I always thought they were so pretty and special that she actually made them for me. 

I love the opportunity to give out a cute card to let someone know how much they mean to you. My man of course, but also parents, siblings, and friends. 

That being said, what about you? Got a Valentine?!

Hand-made Valentine cards are now available at my Etsy shop! Be sure to order yours for that special someone before February 5 to get it in time!

You can find my shop here. Have a wonderful Thursday!

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Wedding Series: Meet Cheryl

As I have already announced, I am in the midst of wedding series in which I am sharing resources, ideas, DIY projects that were useful to me as I planned our wedding day. During the holidays, the series did not have a set schedule, but starting next week, I will be posting on the topic of weddings each Monday. I will looking forward to posting each week, and hope you will check in for inspiration!

I am even more excited to announce that I am partnering with a friend for the series. Meet Cheryl. 

The first time I saw Cheryl was in the Chicago airport flying back to college a few years ago. While people watching at my gate, I noticed her adorable style. As it turned out, Cheryl was heading to my school for her first year of college!

 We became fast friends on the shuttle ride to campus. We immediately realized that we share a love for all things creative. We have shared quite the experiences together. Within a few weeks, Cheryl and I met two charming friends, who would become our husbands. And so, college consisted of crafting, coffee dates, inspirational chats, spontaneous endeavors, and many many dramatic encouragement sessions as we went through the "he-loves-me-he-loves-me-not" stage of our relationships.

You can imagine our excitement when we became engaged to these incredible guys--Wes and Andrew--within a few months of each other. After being together through thick and thin, it was a such a joy to be a part of each other's weddings this past summer!

Cheryl is the kind of girl who will be your friend no matter the circumstance. Her creativity is so wildly inspiring, you kind of just want to copy her on the spot. Her style is fresh, simple, but intriguing and fun. She loves anything vintage, rustic, unique, and that man she married, Andrew! I guess I could talk about her all day, or you could just hop over to her blog at thecrumbster, and have the experience first hand. :)


Cheryl and I both planned low budget weddings flavored with vintage and DIY projects. However, our weddings were both unique to our own different personalities. Each Monday, as I post wedding projects, tips, and resources, Cheryl will be writing about a similar topic applied to her wedding. We will be linking to each other to broaden your horizons and give you 2 perspectives.

Be sure to pop in each Monday and check it out!

You can follow Cheryl's blog here, and be sure to like her Facebook Page too!

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Celebrating Six Months

Yesterday, Wes and I celebrated six months of marriage! I can't believe half a year has already gone by. This is the longest we have ever spent in the same place together--no good byes. I am so happy this isn't just a visit. I can't imagine life without him. :)

It has definitely been busy, moving out here, working, and Wes having school, but I am so thankful the Lord allowed us to be together this year! A crazy life is easier when you're doing it with your best friend.

When you're living on love, anything and everything is fun. We love just going to the park or walking around the mall not buying anything. But Wes and I were just talking about how we've also had the opportunity through different circumstances, to go on some awesome dates we didn't plan on, for free!

Our favorites are the sporting events we've gone to....

Real Salt Lake Soccer Game

Utah Jazz NBA Basketball game {They played the Spurs, my favorite team!!!!}

University of Utah Basketball game

We're not opposed to buying tickets to fun things sometimes, but our God is so gracious to bless us with little things we don't expect and don't deserve. 

I have been thinking about our wedding day often lately. I am so encouraged when I think of all the people who shared it with us, and who love us and pray for us still. I am also encouraged lately by the songs in our ceremony, the challenge from our pastor, and the covenant we made to each other.

All this to say, I love being married to Wes Murdock!

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

How To: Gold Tipped Glittered Votive Holders

I was shopping at target. I always get stuck in their home decor area--LOVE--sometimes Wes has to come rescue me. ;) I came across shimmery votive candle holders that were perfect, but a little pricy  for just little votive holders. I loved the idea of sparkle and gold for candle light, so I tried my own version. 

You will need:
Glass Votive Candle holders
Rubber bands
gold craft paint
small paint brush
gold glitter 

*These candle holders are not washable, and your candle wax will melt to glass, so they aren't for long term use. They are so inexpensive, however, just use them until your candle runs out. Then, make new ones with a different twist!

1. Stretch a rubber band over the top of each candle holder. It should fit snugly.

 2. Position the rubber band close to the rim of the candle holder, leaving only a thin tip of glass at the top.

3. Paint the entire outer area above the rubber band gold. 

 4. Repeat with several layers of paint, allowing each coat to dry in between.

 5. Once your final coat is COMPLETELY dry, carefully snip and peel off the rubber band. Resist the temptation to remove the rubber band too early, or you will peel up your paint with it!

 6. Pour a small dash of glitter into the candle holder.

 7. Twirl your holder around, allowing glitter to stick to the sides. Gently tap out any excess glitter.

Place a candle in and you're done! Quick, easy, and shimmery. :)

Saturday, January 11, 2014

Wedding Invitation and Program Designs

Here are a few of my wedding invitation and program designs. It's neat to create a design based on a bride's theme, then see her whole vision put together for the wedding! Thank you, friends, for the opportunity to be a small part of your gorgeous days.

Be sure to check out the awesome photographers who captured each couple's special day!


Photo by: Jacqueline
*For this invitation, I designed the border. The text was added by the couple.

Wedding Photographer: Felicia Rachelle Photography

Photo by: Jacqueline

  Wedding Photographer: Marisa Albrecht


Photo by: Jacqueline

  Wedding Photographer: Photography by Sarah Jean


Program Photos by: Jacqueline

 Wedding Photographer: Paige Overturf Photography

Looking for the hand written/designed theme for your invitations or programs? Let's Talk!! I'd love to help. :)