Sunshine and Lemonade, Birthday Party Invitation and Party Photos

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sunshine and lemonade birthday party invitation processIf I haven’t said it a thousand times already, Jess and I make a great team! So when she came to me with the idea of a vintage summer birthday party for her son’s second birthday, back in probably November haha, I had many months to get excited to get started on the project. This time, she left it fully in my hands on what to do. She just gave me a photo of a lemonade stand that she wanted to make and then said go. I thought about it for a month or two—seriously, she always gives me plenty of time—and came up with using watercolor as a way of coloring in the invitation. And since her colors started as being yellow, gray and white, I thought a simple line art illustration would work perfectly.

sunshine and lemonade birthday party watercolor invitation processJust to show Jess the layout I wanted to go with, I sketched out a rough idea. Once she saw it, she suggested adding the pendant banners. Love! And then we also decided to add the blue and green to add some more color and make it more kid like. It was for a 2 year old’s birthday party after all.

I then traced the photo she had given me of the lemonade stand, added a kid’s big wheel bike and voila! The invite was almost done.

Then came the fun part… I first tested water coloring straight on the invitation. We ended up not going that route for two reasons: 1. who has time to paint each invitation? and 2. the paper just got too warped from the water.

So instead, I painted on a blank page with the general idea of what I needed. I then scanned that in and added it the drawing. I really am happy with doing that, it allowed us to have the lemonade stand wood in solid white rather than having the green grass show through.

your new friend sam water color invitation process

But to still give it that tactile feel, we printed all the invites on watercolor paper from our home printer.

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sunshine and lemonade your new friend sam birthday invitation

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Then my part was pretty much done. Except for a few more graphics for the party, the rest was up to Jess’ magical party planning hands (see her Pinterest board here).

It’s always fun to hear about all the planning that goes into such an event and then get to just show up and see it all brought to life!

I took a few hundred photos of the party… the day couldn’t have been more perfect for a sunshine filled party celebrating little Grayson! Hope you enjoy…

And thanks Jess for sharing some of your photos with me too… hers are marked below. Read her post on the party here, and then invitation here.

Since this was a lemonade party, the focal point of the decorations was this amazing lemonade stand that Jess and her hubby Scott made!

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Then Jess took a few old bicycle tires, found at a garage sale, spray painted them white and adding dozens of photos of G through the years. Such a cute idea!

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Then she had the treat table…

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Along with the “guest book,” a sun I designed based off the invitation that was filled with fingerprints of all the guests (like last year’s caterpillar!).

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And then of course, a party couldn’t be complete with cake!

Grayson seriously makes the sweetest faces! Here’s just a few as he was so adorably admiring his cake…

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And any good 2 year old’s party includes lots of kiddos running around… so let’s end this post on the cutest of notes!

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You remember baby Parker?

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Grayson had the sweetest reactions to his presents… especially his new Toy Story pajamas.

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Little Grayson,

Hope you know how much you are loved… how much you have been prayed for. I love your sweet demeanor, those sparkly eyes, and your flirty show-off side… may you never lose that sparkle and precious little smile that shows us all that dear heart of yours.

Love, Auntie Sam

Calvary Chapel Canyon Hills Easter Services

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Do you have a place to go for this weekend’s Easter celebration?

Join us in Canyon Hills as we celebrate the resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ!

You will know the truth and the truth will set you free.

Good Friday service at 7 on April 18th.
Easter services at 9 and 11 on the morning of April 20th.
With child care provided at both Sunday services!

Please use the below graphic to share about our services on Facebook too!

Calvary Canyon Hills Easter services 2014 designed by Sam Allen Creates

And here are a few more images of the newspaper I helped design for our local newspaper.

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Hope to see you there!

Custom Lettering and Design for Amie’s Shabby Chic Vintage DIY Wedding

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Just a month after the wedding, I posted an in depth recap of that glorious day, when my best friend married the man of her dreams under the trees, amongst the hills of Temecula Valley.

While this post shares my best friend’s wedding on a whole, I wanted to share a few photos of the behind the scenes of parts I got to work on!

To make it to that gorgeous day though, a lot of craft nights (and mornings, and days, and weekends) had to happen. Because she loves me, or my writing I should say, I got to hand letter on just about everything! From the invitations to the cake topper… my little hands were busy!

Of course, as a matron of honor, I had many other duties from planning the bridal shower (link), the bachelorette party, and of course on the day of, I had to give a speech. But all in all, my main duty was just helping the bride along the way. Facebook Chat was our go to means of communication. Almost daily, messages were exchanged with links and “so what do you think about this and that’s?”

I just wanted to take a moment to go over some of the crafts and projects we worked on together. It’s a big thanks to Amie Belle and her encouraging me on these projects that pushed me in my passion for hand lettering which launched my Etsy shop to where it is today.

So in a way, this is a giant portfolio update for me—a way to say “hey, I can write that for you!”—and also a way to share ways you can DIY your own wedding day!

If you have any questions, give me a shout out in the comments and I will get it answered!

The Invitations: Save the Dates, Rehearsal and the Wedding

Let’s start with the invitations! I posted about the Save the Dates last March! And here is the very first rubber stamps that launched over 100 more! Kinda crazy to look back on that actually. Who knew?!

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After the Save the Dates, Amie and I worked on her wedding invitations. But of course, before the wedding, comes the rehearsal! I just adore how these came out… all Amie asked for was a “type” look. Which is a favorite of mine so I was happy to oblige! These are actually for sale in my Etsy shop too!

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For the wedding invitations, Amie wanted something “simple.” So we kept the invite itself pretty simple and then hand punched (using this Martha Stewart paper punch) the bottom of each card. Then glued those cream pages (from Staples) to a piece of Kraft paper (from Michaels). We also designed maps and a RSVP postcard (postcards printed at UPrinting.com). All the pieces were then tied together with lace and twine and we added 3 Kraft hang tags (Recollections tag punch from Michaels) that read “You’re Invited” along with a verse from the book of 1 John. The invite was then mailed out in a charcoal grey envelope addressed with a large sticker label and the return address was rubber stamped.

wedding invitation assembly

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wedding invitation with lace and kraft tags

For the day of, we did quite a variety of projects. Not really sure where to start…

Let’s start with the directional and other fun wood signs!

Hand Painted Wood Signs

The benefit of hand lettering everything, starting with the STDs, was that everything matched seamlessly and we didn’t have to depend on stencils or trying to figure out how to get certain fonts painted on to wood. We did however create stencils for the serif font seen below… but those were easy since the lines are mostly all straight. We just printed out the words at size, cut the inside of the letter out and voila! Home made stencils!

This first photo is Matt and I working on the LOVE sign and cutting out stencils along with a bunch of the completed wooden signs at my house.

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Harvard Photography

Harvard Photography

Harvard Photography

Harvard Photography

For the cake topper, from Morgann Hill Designs, we just used a purple Sharpie paint pen. Easy peasy.

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For this LOVE sign we followed the tutorial on Shanty to Chic—except we created stencils of our serif font to match the rest of the wedding materials. Side note, tonight we are making more of these but with more custom designs! I can not wait to have one of my own!

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Hand Lettered Escort Name Tags

We also hand lettered the escort tags… to save time we ordered these tags on eBay and then used these Micron pens in sepia along with some rubber stamps for the table number.

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Harvard Photography

The large chalkboard was from Kirklands, and I hand lettered the sayings using this pen from Hobby Lobby. So easy, and much less messy than real chalk. I did however, prime the board with a real stick of chalk. That helped a lot—and gave it a more worn look. In the image above, you can tell that the board was primed, the image below was written straight on the board without any real chalk lather. The ink sticks more to the board in the unprimed which will make changing it much harder. So it really just depends on how you want to use them in the future.

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Amie also picked up a few frames from Hobby Lobby and then created chalkboards out of them using some chalkboard spray paint.

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wedding DIY assembly

The wedding favors were red neck wine glasses (candlestick glued to a mason jar) for the ladies, and plain mason jars for the men. Attached to each jar was a hand tag using that same Recollections punch from the invitations—and inside each jar was a personalized bookmark, with the name of the guest on top to help with the seating arrangement. These tags and bookmarks were just printed (same ream of paper from the invitations too!) and cut at home. The bookmarks were also punched at the bottom to match the invitations along with an eyelet (see above photo) to hold the twine tassel in place.

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These last paper products to show you were also just printed at home using normal stock paper that was the same cream color as the wedding cardstock.

The wedding programs: the lightweight printer paper made it easy to roll up and then tie off with some more twine.

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DIY wedding programs

These fun Mad Libs we created using a bunch of sayings we found online.

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Harvard Photography

Slideshow

And the last thing I helped Amie with was completing the slideshow for the wedding… it was created using iMovie and could not have been more easy! I had never used it before and was really relieved that it truly was as easy to use as my husband kept promising it would be! 🙂 One big tip: before placing music, make sure you have all your images and transitions set up because once you have to change those, then you have to go back in and tweak and every single song.

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If I can give any advice to any of you soon to be MOH’s and bridesmaids, it would be to just be an ear and a helping hand to the bride. While that seems so obvious, it’s easier said than done.

Another piece of advice: if you think a project will take one evening to complete, double or triple that! 🙂

Many of the elements above are now for sale in my Etsy shop:

Address rubber stamp. You’re invited! rubber stamp. Invitation card. Rehearsal invite. Custom Lettering. Escort tags.

Save the Date rubber stamps as seen above are coming soon—see my other Save the Date rubber stamps in the meantime.

New Etsy Shop Launched: Mama & Mia Boutique, Hand Knit Infinity Scarves + Giveaway!

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I’m so excited to share this new shop with y’all!

Over the past few months, Rachel has been racking my brain regarding all things Etsy so it’s been fun seeing this come together! And just last weekend, her Etsy boutique went live!

In her own words, Rachel describes her scarves:

After having my darling daughter Amelia, I really felt inspired to start using my creative juices and get crafting. Since being fashionably dressed has always been a must for myself, Amelia now gets to share in that same joy! Scarves are a staple in my winter wardrobe for staying warm and cute so it only made sense that Amelia have her own as well! Voila! Mama & Mia, scarves for littles and their mamas and basically anyone else with a neck that needs a little lovin!

The Mama & Mia scarf is handmade, hand knit, chunky infinity scarf, made from 80% acrylic and 20% wool yarn.

A couple weeks ago, we got together to take some photographs of her infinity scarves product line. Little Mia napped as we shot all the Mama scarves and then woke up just in time to model the Mia scarves for us.

Hope you enjoy the images as much as I do… product photography is fun! Such a different approach than regular portraits… always trying to maximize the versatility of the scarves and bring all attention to them rather than the model herself—although the model is just as gorgeous!

Check out the photos and then at the end of this post, enter our giveaway for a free scarf for yourself and a friend—or your very own Mia.

Emerald:

Comes in sizes for Mama and Mia.

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Oatmeal

Comes in sizes for Mama and Mia.

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Mustard

Comes in sizes for Mama and Mia.

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Harvest

Comes in sizes just for Mama.

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Linen

Comes in sizes for Mama and Mia.

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Pink to Grey Ombre

Comes in sizes just for Mia.

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And of course, Rachel also had me create them a custom lettered stamp for the hang tags…

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mama and mia boutique pin it and win it contest

This contest is now closed… Jess won a Mama scarf in Mustard with her Pinterest entry! Sweet Rachel has given us a coupon code for all my readers, use code NEWFRIENDSAM when checking out at Mama and Mia Boutique for $5 off your order!

So with all that to say, I’m having a little contest and all you have to do to win a set of your very own scarves is…

1. Pin, to one of your Pinterest boards, from any of the above images (you can pin from this post using the Pinterest button below or from the Etsy shop)… and then…

2. Leave a comment on this post below telling us which color and size (Mama or Mia) scarf you want—along with a link to your pin.

And that’s it! Then you’ll be entered in a drawing for a free set of scarves from the Mama and Mia Boutique.

Fine print: The contest starts today until Saturday, March 15, 11:59 PST. Once the winner is selected, I will contact you via email to get your shipping address.

New Etsy Listing: Printable Photo Christmas Cards

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Christmas is closing in on us yet again! I still can’t believe this year has came and went so so fast. And what a year it was!

One of the joys of Christmas that I always look forward to is receiving Christmas cards in the mail!

Here are a few designs I helped my friends create last year along with our very own Christmas card design (for whatever reason they never made it on here last year!).

Each of these 3 designs are listed in my Etsy shop so head on over there if any of these would suit your needs this year. All you have to do is provide me some photographs and your desired wording/verses and I can customize your card for you! You will then get a file back to order your cards through whatever service you’d like! I have a few to recommend too!

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P.S. Here’s a sneak peek into the hand lettering of our 2013 card…

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Card 1 features family photography by Mandi Spottsville.

Card 2 features wedding photography by All Aboard Studios.

New Etsy Listing: Hot Air Balloon Baby Shower Invitations

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Jess mentioned in her post that she LOVED how this invite turned out, and I would have to agree! I think it must have been the excitement in the air from finally having a baby girl coming to our group (who lives locally)!

Quite often, Jess chooses the theme and colors from the baby-to-be’s nursery. Trisha did such a darling job with Molly’s nursery! With teal walls and pink chevron set by Trisha, Jess introduced the hot air balloons for the shower.

All that to say, the shower was picture perfect and I have finally listed the invite in my Etsy shop! And it comes with a bonus item: a Thank You note printable!

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See a few more of the photos from the shower on Jess’ blog…

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Vintage Sewing Baby Shower Invitation

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This is one of two projects completed with Jess for our church. Now that our church has gotten so so big, instead of doing individual baby showers, for the first time the church hosted one big shower for all the expectant mommies at the church.

With the theme of “vintage sewing,” I created the invite… see some more photos below from the event as well! So so adorable!

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If you’re looking for a “vintage sewing” baby shower invitation please contact me on creating a custom listing using this design for you in my Etsy shop.

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Flourish, Calvary Chapel Canyon Hills Womens’ Luncheon

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handwritten-sketch-Flourish_1471Another project completed with Jess, from J. Rose Photography, for our church… but this time for the annual Womens’ Luncheon.

Their theme verse for the event was from Psalms:

The righteous shall flourish like a palm tree.

We created a flyer for our church bulletin that used a pink and mint green color scheme, incorporating hand drawn type and succulents. Definitely loved how this came to be!

Here are some close ups of the flyer along with some photos from the event from Jess!

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Amelia Celine, Newborn Photography and Birth Announcement, with her Mama Rachel

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Miss Amelia made her debut a few weeks early, gracing us with her presence on June 8, just weeks after her baby shower.

Rachel and I wasted no time in getting together for photos exactly on her one week birthday.

The little princess did not want to show us her skin but I did manage to snap my favorite photo before we bundled her back up!

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She just loved being close to her mama…

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Purple Chevron Birth Announcement

And we just finished Miss Amelia’s baby announcement—matching the colors to her outfit but the fonts to her shower invitation! With love, Hello, to you too Miss Amelia! I love you so much already!

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Kathleen’s Travel Cafe, Breakfast and Coffee Bridal Shower

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Oh man have I been excited to post about Kathleen’s amazing shower. Down to the smallest detail, I loved every little bit of it!

And it was quite a combination of decorations starting with quite a few DIYs, Amie’s upcoming wedding (thanks again Amie!), my travel themed living room, the Rooftop BBQ trailer (recognize that chalkboard above?), and even a potato sack from Lauren’s Central Park shower (see that “coffee bean” sack above?)!

Let’s start with the invitation though, shall we? While driving home from the hospital on the day Parker was born, Lauren (Kathleen’s wonderful matron of honor) and I were brainstorming about shower decoration possibilities. We had long ago settled on a travel cafe theme and with the spark of the idea of a muffin and coffee mug sitting on top of a suitcase, the invitation came to be.

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Funnily enough, when talking with the bride about her wedding invitations, we went with the tall and slender business size for those as well!

And speaking of the bride… look how beautiful she looked the day of her shower!

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Okay, back to the details of the shower. Our bride, loves to travel. She studied abroad in both Jerusalem and Germany while traveling to Ireland and a few other European countries as well. And not only does she love travel, she is fueled by coffee. Literally.

The shower was held at our church office. It really was the perfect location, not only does it have a coffee bar, but it is also beautifully decorated with travel inspired elements and worked great as a cafe!

We served up Kathleen’s favorite coffee brand, Intelligentsia. As well as DeJongs chocolate milk, a local dairy favorite, and a variety of juices.

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Lauren even had the idea to create custom labels for our to-go cups! And I was happy to oblige with a custom graphic that said “Love is Brewing” that we also applied to the potato sack turned coffee bean bag as seen in that first photo.

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Coffee Bean Favors and Mug Guest Book

For our favors, we stocked up on quite a few pounds of chocolate covered coffee beans from none other than Winco! That was a fun shopping trip for Lauren and me! 🙂

We then bagged them and attached a tag with a clothespin, looking somewhat like a bag of coffee beans from the store.

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On our entry table, we also had the counting jar for the first game of the day. Count the coffee beans, I think the grand total was 1,800?!

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Our guest book were two mugs that were signed with a permanent marker and then baked to last the bride through many a cup of coffee. Thanks to one of Kathleen’s favorite blogs, A Beautiful Mess, for the idea!

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Waffle and Breakfast Bar

Breakfast was served to include a variety of quiches, muffins, and fruit; as well as a waffle bar with more toppings than your stomach could ever want!

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Succulent Centerpieces

Our centerpieces were another genius idea of Lauren’s, a succulent potted in a giant colored mug sitting atop a stack of books! We used these mug planters as game prizes… and I even made it home with two as well

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Donut Cake!

This was probably my favorite table of the day! We used one of my suitcases, opened up, displaying a cake stand atop a stack of books, piled high with a bakers dozen of donuts! The table also included some globes, photos of the happy couple, and of course some more succulent filled mugs.

You may even recognize that cake stand from Grayson’s party! It’s sure come in handy, thanks Jamie!

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And our last set up from the shower was the backdrop for the bride to open her presents.

We used Jessica’s photo backdrop equipment to hang Jamie’s yellow blanket. Then we made a few banners, a fringe banner (DIY link here) and a chevron pendant banner (chevron ribbon can be found at Hobby Lobby along with the stencils).

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Unique Bridal Shower Game: Pin the Beard on the Groom!

And of course we had a very Kathleen-ish game. Her fiance has quite the infamous beard, one of the qualities in a man Kathleen had always hoped and dreamed of.

So of course we had to play “Pin the Beard on Allan” game. More thanks to A Beautiful Mess on the engineer prints at Staples!

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Invitation Details

Here are some additional close ups of the invitation which is for sale in my Etsy shop! I just adore how it came out, from the striped edge to the pops of yellow!

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