Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Christmas in July

I've never understood why it's Christmas in July and not June. Wouldn't it make more sense to be at the six-month mark? Either way, I'm getting really excited for Christmas - despite some anxious feelings at how quickly this year seems to be moving. There are few things I love more than decorating for the 25th of December and this year my excitement is heightened now that I have the resources to create a bokeh with my DSLR.

I got to practicing a few weeks ago making a homemade lens cover with a heart cutout via this tutorial. There's definitely room for improvement, but the initial shots are quite lovely if I do say so myself. I can't wait to try some other shapes like stars, circles and maybe even some seasonal words (i.e. "joy" or  "noel"). And then there's garland to be made. Lots and lots of Christmas garland.


Sunday, July 22, 2012

Recent Recipe Goodness

{Cold Rice Noodles with Peanut-Lime Chicken} 

Summer is renown for all sorts of fresh produce and it's becoming quite standard for my apartment to be filled to the brim with peaches, green beans, cucumbers, tomatoes and so much more. It would be a shame to let all these ingredients go to waste in a standard everyday meal, so I've turned to the Internet (mostly my top food blogs) to give me inspiration for new and unique dishes. Here are some of my favorites so far.

{Chili Lime Chicken Turkey Burgers}

{Sangria courtesy of my friend Ashley's personal recipe}

 {Homemade Chipotle Burrito Bowl using this rice recipe}

{Extra fancy Greek salad - no recipe, just a staple at this apartment} 

{Peach & Creme Fraiche Pie}

{Black Bean, Quinoa & Citrus Salad as mentioned in my last post}

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Black Bean, Quinoa & Citrus Salad

I stumbled across this recipe a few months ago and have been dying to try it. It combines so many of my favorite things like avocado, cilantro and grapefruit. Plus, I feel like it must be somewhat healthy. I made a few modifications like cutting the olive oil in half, doubling the grapefruit and adding sunflower seeds, red bell pepper and cumin. The outcome was great - it was a light, refreshing salad for a muggy summer night here in Atlanta and as an added bonus, it was great for lunch the next day as well.

Monday, July 16, 2012

Sweet soul

This weekend, we celebrated a sweet soul. While the tragic event remains fresh in our minds even one year later, it is outshone by the love, respect and admiration we have for such a beautiful, loving young woman. Brittney, you were loved more than you can know - by those who knew you well, knew you a little and even had never met you. We will always remember you.

Saturday, July 14, 2012

So Vogue

It's been weeks since I mentioned I was itching to paint something. Weeks. But I have finally finished! It all started late one night when I just couldn't sleep (I trust you know those nights). I was lying in bed thinking, thinking, thinking - of nothing in particular, really - until I finally got up and put my unrest to use. That night, I painted from three until five in the morning and then worked sporadically for the next few weeks to finish.

Inspiration for this piece came from my roommate's In Vogue book. It's a lovely photo of a model walking through what I presume to be streets somewhere in Spain or Latin America (no photo explanation in the book). I used a piece of waferboard because I liked the texture and, added bonus, my dad had a piece laying around. 

We needed something bright in this corner and though I originally picked yellow, I ultimately went with more orange. Naturally, as expected here on Flowers are Lovely, ombre was successfully incorporated (more ombre can be seen here and here).

I like how it turned out minus a few oddities like her finger, foot and that hat. Plus, we're just so Vogue around here.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Lingerie Shower Invitations

Happy Wednesday! Here's a look at the finished invitations I was working on this weekend. These were fun to make and, as if I even have to say it, we are firm believers in all things handmade here at Flowers are Lovely. It just gives an already special event that je ne sais quoi... Pizzazz? Spark? Extra umph? Either way, I'm happy with how they turned out and even happier that my friend liked them. Congrats to the bride-to-be  Katie and three cheers for a fantastic lingerie party!


Monday, July 9, 2012

Lake eats.

 {Greek salad}

Somewhat shamefully, there was not a moment this weekend at the lake where my friends and I weren't (over-) indulging in homemade meals or desserts. It's sort of what you sign up for when you combine a few domestic goddesses with a handful of hungry boys. Meanwhile, back in reality, I've been eating salad and stir fry on this rainy Monday.


{Light and fluffy pound cake batter}

{Pound cake as it cooks}

 {Filets fresh off the grill}

{Lots of fresh veggies + Morgan's fine cutting skills}

{Homemade vanilla ice cream} 

{Cinnamon toast French toast via Smitten Kitchen} 

{Added bonus: sweet Reason on the deck}

Saturday, July 7, 2012

WIP for the Weekend

Naturally when a friend reaches out asking me to help design invitations for a lingerie party, I am quick to oblige - especially when the ideas she presents are crafty, lacy and a tad bit flirty. Here's sneak peak at my work in progress for the weekend.

Friday, July 6, 2012

Peanut Butter Brownies

Call me crazy (or maybe), but I'm not a huge fan of peanut butter. Now, don't get me wrong. I like the stuff all right and am never one to shy away from a good peanut butter cup or classic PB&J, but I could probably live without it and am definitely not an addict like some I know.

Or at least that was the case before I made dessert for a weekend lake trip with some friends. 

Well. Let me tell you: these peanut butter brownies from Smitten Kitchen were a game-changer for me. Maybe it was the creamy, peanut buttery mixture of, well, butter, peanut butter and sugar that started off this recipe. Maybe it was the tiny chocolate chips folded into the fudgey batter. Or maybe it was the smooth, cool ganache on top. Either way, these guys changed my mind about peanut butter and I can't get enough of it. That's right: one bite and any wishy-washy thought about the PB went right away.

Recipe notes: I did not use salt and upped the vanilla by about half. They turned out great - thanks again, Smitten Kitchen, for another great recipe!