Mother’s Day Gift Ideas Guide, Personalized Artwork and Unique Presents from the Heart

I strive to create unique gifts for Mother’s Day, and luckily for you, not just for my mom! I love creating gifts for YOU to give the mothers in your life too! I collected a few of my favorite items—that you can purchase today—that I guarantee will make your mom, your wife, your grandmother smile straight from the heart!

1. Watercolor Family Portrait

A watercolor painting turns your photos into works of art! Whether you want to use a professional photo or snapshot from your phone, using a photo that you love puts more emphasis on the sentimental bond of love between the mother and child, or grandmother and grandchild (hint, hint!!). These watercolor portraits are always a hit!

Links to purchase: Watercolor Family Portraits


2. Hand Drawn Papercut Silhouette

I’ve been selling these little cuties since 2014! I love how the stylized look of their profiles make you focus in on their unique features: their buttons noses, the shape of their lips, and the curl of their hair.

Links to purchase: Single Person or Siblings Silhouettes


3. Floral Last Name Sign

I don’t think I could describe why I love these signs so much, not any more than the Avett Brothers say in their song: “Always remember, there was nothing worth sharing like the love that let us share our name.” There’s so much love and history in a last name, so many memories behind each family. These last name signs immortalize that love in a beautiful way!

Links to purchase: Floral Last Name Sign or Evergreen Last Name Sign or message me to discuss a custom design like the Maine coast one pictured above.


4. Floral Letters and Papercut Silhouettes

If you just can’t pick between the last two products, here’s a combo option of my Floral Letters with the papercut silhouettes. The 8×10 size is perfect for family’s with 2 kids, but larger sizes and other variations are available.

To purchase: Floral Letters with Papercut Silhouettes


5. Custom Painting of Favorite Verse or Saying

The final route is going totally custom and having her favorite verse or saying written in watercolor calligraphy, all painted within a watercolor floral wreath!

To purchase: Custom Watercolor Painting


Bonus! With any purchase from this Gift Guide, I will include this year’s Mother’s Day card for FREE!

To receive your free card, please make a note in your order notes during checkout and mention this blog post!

Bonus Number TWO: All of the watercolor paintings are on sale in my shop until April 28!! Click through the links above to view pricing. Spaces are limited for Mother’s Day delivery so order soon.

Isaiah’s Under the Sea First Birthday Party

After Lauren’s beautiful baby shower in May, I was in a party planning slump which meant I ended up putting off planning Isaiah’s birthday party until the absolute last minute! The whole party pulled together only the week of the event, except for the invite of course.

I took some photos in my office of my favorite decorations before the party just in case something happened to them on the day of. I got a little caught up in them and they probably don’t really go for a first birthday but I love them nonetheless.

But first, I want to share the invite with you! It was so fun to work with such bright paint colors! And make the simple ocean illustrations all fit together like a big puzzle!

Sam Allen Creates - Isaiah's First Birthday - Under the Sea Birthday Invitation - Watercolor 1Sam Allen Creates - Isaiah's First Birthday - Under the Sea Birthday Invitation - Watercolor 2Sam Allen Creates - Isaiah's First Birthday - Under the Sea Birthday Invitation - Watercolor 5Sam Allen Creates - Isaiah's First Birthday - Under the Sea Birthday Invitation - Watercolor 6Sam Allen Creates - Watercolor Handpainted Envelope Addressing

And of course I had to paint up some Thank You cards to match! However, that did make me end up sending them months late! Just like this blog post, I’m always late nowadays! 😛

Sam Allen Creates - Isaiah's First Birthday Thank You Card - Under the Sea Birthday - Watercolor PaintingSam Allen Creates - Isaiah's First Birthday Thank You Card - Under the Sea Birthday - Watercolor Birthday

While searching for Under the Sea birthday party ideas, I came across this saying about the ocean and loved it so much, I knew it needed to be on display at the party!

Sam Allen Creates - Isaiah's First Birthday - Under the Sea Birthday - As the Ocean has no end so does my love for you - ocean saying - handlettered watercolor artSam Allen Creates - Isaiah's First Birthday - Under the Sea Birthday - As the Ocean has no end so does my love for you - ocean saying - handlettered watercolor art 2

I also came across these amazing glass bottles at Michael’s and of course I had to write all over it. I used lyrics from “Oceans” by Hillsong… it’s another one of those decor items that don’t really fit a kid’s birthday party but I just had to make it. My hands were itching to letter on this bottle!

Sam Allen Creates - Isaiah's First Birthday - Under the Sea Birthday Decorations - Handlettered Bottle - Oceans lyrics 1

One very important part to any kid’s first birthday party invitation is the “achievement poster.” I loved going over all of our boy’s favorite things, collecting what’s near and dear to our guy and painting them all out. He made the perfect model as well! I had no idea what he was going to do posing with a poster over half his size but his little faces looking at his mama’s work was adorable.

Sam Allen Creates - Isaiah's First Birthday - Under the Sea Birthday One Year Poster 4

Sam Allen Creates - Isaiah's First Birthday - Under the Sea Birthday One Year Poster 7Sam Allen Creates - Isaiah's First Birthday - Under the Sea Birthday One Year Poster 11Sam Allen Creates - Isaiah's First Birthday - Under the Sea Birthday One Year Poster 10Sam Allen Creates - Isaiah's First Birthday - Under the Sea Birthday One Year Poster 8Sam Allen Creates - Isaiah's First Birthday - Under the Sea Birthday One Year Poster 9

Sam Allen Creates - Isaiah's First Birthday - Under the Sea Birthday One Year Poster 6

Finally, here are some photos from the actual birthday party day!

Our amazingly generous friend Anthony took the majority of these photos! It was such a relief to just be able to focus on Isaiah and not have to worry about documenting all these details! So thank you, Anthony!!

Sam Allen Creates - Isaiah's First Birthday - Under the Sea Birthday - Dessert Table 4Sam Allen Creates - Isaiah's First Birthday - Under the Sea Birthday - Dessert Table 1Sam Allen Creates - Isaiah's First Birthday - Under the Sea Birthday - Dessert Table 5Sam Allen Creates - Isaiah's First Birthday - Under the Sea Birthday - Dessert Table 2Sam Allen Creates - Isaiah's First Birthday - Under the Sea Birthday - One Year PosterSam Allen Creates - Isaiah's First Birthday - Under the Sea Birthday Party DecorationsSam Allen Creates - Isaiah's First Birthday - Under the Sea Birthday Party Sea Glass Food PlacecardSam Allen Creates - Isaiah's First Birthday - Under the Sea Birthday Party FoodSam Allen Creates - Isaiah's First Birthday - Under the Sea Birthday Party - Guest BookSam Allen Creates - Isaiah's First Birthday - Under the Sea Birthday Party Favor 2Sam Allen Creates - Isaiah's First Birthday - Under the Sea Birthday Party Favor

And that’s the end of that! It was here and gone within a blink of an eye and now I have a 15 month old! But seriously, when do we stop counting months? Anyway, the day was such a joy. I love watching our boy be loved on by his family and friends. My heart just overflows.

Lindsey and Anthony’s Tropical Wedding at Bali Hai Restaurant, San Diego—Watercolor Wedding Stationery

You guys, I wrote this post TWO years ago, just after the wedding and then I found out I was pregnant and my blog pretty much burnt out for a bit while I struggled with a full 9 months of morning sickness and then newborn craziness and then just working mom life with a baby. So I hope you’ll indulge me with this “throwback post” as I’m excited to be posting this now even though it’s two years later!!

This was such an amazing wedding to work on!! First of all, I got to be bridesmaid AND the stationery designer so that’s always fun!! Second of all, Lindsey let me paint all over everything! And that is extra fun!!

Lindsey and I have been friends since 4th grade. She was in our wedding several TEN years ago and I was honored that she asked me to be in her wedding as well!!

I wanted to share a few of my favorite images from the wedding, of my work and the day itself!

First off though, let’s start with the wedding invitation suite….

Sam Allen Creates Watercolor Weddng Invitation Suite Water Lily

It was my first time painting flowers of any kind, I definitely learned a lot during pages and pages of practice! Even looking back two years later, I still love this suite so much. It was also my first time addressing envelopes in watercolor. I went through quite a bit of purple watercolor paint that summer!

Sam Allen Creates Watercolor Weddng InvitationSam Allen Creates Watercolor Weddng Invitation Water Lily DetailsSam Allen Creates Watercolor Weddng RSVP Card PostcardSam Allen Creates Watercolor Weddng Invitation Details Card

We even worked on some rehearsal invites to go with the theme as well…

Sam Allen Creates Watercolor Rehearsal Dinner Invitation

Okay okay enough of nerding out over paper goods in my home photo studio, let’s see the real wedding photos… by photographer Melissa McClure! And you can see her blog of the day here with so many more amazing photos!

Sam Allen Creates Watercolor Wedding Programs - Photo by Melissa McClure 5Sam Allen Creates Watercolor Wedding Programs - Photo by Melissa McClure

The reception was held at the Bali Hai Restaurant in La Jolla. It was a gorgeous restaurant right on the beach with a dock down into the water.

Wedding Bali Hai Reception - Photo by Melissa McClure

Sam Allen Creates Watercolor Wedding Reception Bali Hai Table Number Chart - Photo by Melissa McClureSam Allen Creates Watercolor Wedding Reception Table Number Chart - Photo by Melissa McClure

Sam Allen Creates Watercolor Wedding Reception Cards Birdcage - Photo by Melissa McClureSam Allen Creates Watercolor Wedding Reception Guest Book Sign - Photo by Melissa McClureSam Allen Creates Watercolor Wedding Reception Drink Selection Sign - Photo by Melissa McClure

Sam Allen Creates Watercolor Wedding Reception Bali Hai - Photo by Melissa McClure 2Sam Allen Creates Watercolor Wedding Reception Bali Hai Tablescape Floating Dahlia Centerpiece - Photo by Melissa McClure 2Sam Allen Creates Watercolor Wedding Reception Bali Hai Tablescape Floating Dahlia Centerpiece - Photo by Melissa McClure 5Sam Allen Creates Watercolor Wedding Reception Bali Hai Tablescape Floating Dahlia Centerpiece - Photo by Melissa McClure

For the placecards, we created individually painted bookmarks which would then fit a photo strip from the photo booth!

Sam Allen Creates Watercolor Wedding Reception Placecard Bookmark - Photo by Melissa McClure.jpg 2Sam Allen Creates Watercolor Wedding Reception Tablesetting Place setting Placecard Bookmark - Photo by Melissa McClureSam Allen Creates Watercolor Wedding Thank You - Photo by Melissa McClure.jpg

And just a few more pictures of the beautiful bride and groom and I’m sneaking one in of me with the bride too! Isn’t she lovely!!

Wedding Portraits - Photo by Melissa McClureWedding Portraits - Photo by Melissa McClure 2Wedding Portraits at Ballast Point - Photo by Melissa McClureWedding Bali Hai Reception Sunset - Photo by Melissa McClure

 

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