Friday, May 30, 2008

This weekend...

I think I'll make these cupcakes. I have the next two weekends off before the next round of weddings begins, so I'm looking forward to time with my little guys, a pedicure with a friend, working in the garden, and a little time spent baking.

Photo and recipe courtesy of Sweet Paul. Don't they look divine?

Chocolate Coconut Cupcakes

Makes 12 large cupcakes

1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
1/2 cup sugar
3 eggs
1 cup plain flour
1/4 cup shredded coconut
4 tablespoons good quality cocoa powder
1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 cup shredded coconut
1 teaspoon cocoa powder
ice cream, for serving

Preheat oven to 350F. Beat butter and sugar until pale. Add eggs, one at a time. Mix well. Add flour, coconut, cocoa and baking powder. Mix well. Pour the batter into a 12 cup buttered cupcake tin. Place in oven and bake for 12-15 minutes. Cool on a wire rack. Toss the shredded coconut in cocoa powder.

Serve the cupcakes with the chocolate coconut and ice cream.
Photo:Colin Cooke

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Tried and true

Michelle Rago (love, love, LOVE her work!) recently did a post about her favorite details, and I agree with absolutely every single one of them (pussy willows, ferns, fruit, bittersweet vine, feathers, rocks, birch bark, crystals). I have a few additions though...

Candles...because the sparkle is beautiful, and everyone looks and feels gorgeous in the glowey light. (From left: Oh How Charming!, Michelle Rago, Aaron Delesie.)

Fern geometric yet organic, and the most fabulous color of purple/chocolate/black EVER. And yes, they really are from a living plant (people always ask me "what those metal thingys are") (All from Fiore Blossoms, except bout on grey suit from Style Me Pretty.)

Letters...beautiful fonts/type/calligraphy, presented on menu cards, table numbers, and place cards always shows that you thought of every detail. (Calligraphy from Laura Hooper.)

And lanterns. They can be elegant, fun, breezy, casual, formal...but they always make a huge impact. (Photos from Lola Event Production, MS, Anna Kuperburg, Square Root Designs.)

What else are we forgetting?

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Currently loving...

Finally getting caught up on reading my favorite blogs. Here's what people have been talking about...

Awesome bridesmaid dresses via Elizabeth Anne Designs. Why don't more brides choose dresses for their girls with a great pattern like this?

Rainbow bridesmaid shoes and a beautiful wedding (check out the whole thing here) on Laura Kay's blog.

This beautiful black and white vignette in an antique cabinet on housemartin. I'm actually so envious of her trip to Brimfield. It's on my life-list.

Heather's room re-do full of vintage, reused and recycled items. It's organized, bright, and inspirational! I have to admit, after I read her post I started moving pictures around on my walls, bought new canvas mail bins for my mother's day armoire, and even got out a little can of paint.Beautiful little figures from Tamar Mogendorff via Peonies and Polariods. Stuffed animals for grown-ups.

Really loving the whole idea behind SCRAP, which sfgirlbybay posted about recently. Scrap is an acronym for "Scroungers Center for Re-Usable Art Parts". They are a warehouse of recycled art materials, which you can rummage through and take home treasures to create with. Yarn, ribbons, spools, buttons, old doll parts, letters, lace, even OLD DENTURE MOLDS! I'd love to go on a treasure hunt there.

I love, love, love(!) floral door wreathes, and these bright ones from a real wedding on Snippet & Ink are perfect.

I also fall more in love with color-coordinated bookcases each time I see them. This one from I Suwanee is fab...or is it the paperwhites that I love?

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

I wish...

I had a reason to order every single pair of these earrings from Bell'occhio. I love them all, but can't quite validate it. But if you're searching for wedding earrings...lucky you! You do have a reason for at least a few. Because you better order a couple so that you can try them on to make sure you have the right one. And there's the rehearsal dinner. And a shower. (Hey, the most expensive pair is still pretty reasonable--$56.oo--so go for it!).

Monday, May 26, 2008

Happy Birthday dear friend!

From Rose and Radish via sfgirlbybay.

Today is my friend Robin's birthday. She is one of the greatest blessings in my life, and I treasure our friendship immensely. We've been the best of friends since second grade, but it seems like she's just always been in my life.

Robin's egg blue pendant and earings from victoria stone.

Robin's talents? Listening, and offering great advice (without being pushy). No topic has ever been off limits. The tough stuff; crazy family issues (we both have a few strange relatives), boyfriends and then husbands (I really owe her for this one actually--I went on my first date with my husband thanks to a double-date so she wouldn't have to go alone with his friend), break-ups, career changes, hormones, babies, get the picture. But we love the fun stuff too! Houses and decorating, fashion and shopping, cooking and restaurants, books (when we're feeling literary) and tv (when we're not).

Singing robins from Bell'occhio.

Other talents? She writes THE BEST notes when she sends you card. And she ALWAYS sends a thank you card. Gardening. I was at it long before her, and offered a lot of advice and ideas when she first started. Now, I am constantly asking her for help or copying the amazing plant combinations she puts together that are just vivid with color and texture (and she often does this without a single flower in site). Salads. And not the healthy kind. The kind chock full of bacon, dried cranberries, candied pecans, feta cheese, and luscious homemade vinaigrette.

Handmade robin pattern available from tdpainting.

She's sweet to my boys (and bails me out constantly by watching them when I'm running to meetings with clients or weddings), is a passionate advocate for saving the earth and ourselves from chemicals and waste, and always has great magazines at her house.

Beautiful robin's egg French soaps from Cox & Cox.

That little twist of fate that put us living next door to each other as girls was as good as winning the lottery. Not everyone has a life-long friendship like Robin and I do, and it truly is a blessing. Love you!

Darling vintage necklace from portobello.

Friday, May 23, 2008

The flamingos are coming!

One of my favorite place on earth, The Woodland Park Zoo in Seattle, is hosting a big ol' bash this weekend to welcome their newest residents--a gorgeous flock of Chilean flamingos! (For fun, click here for a link to hear a flock of flamingos.) Such glam birds--I thought they deserved their own little welcome here.

A flamingo inspiration board, courtesy of Snippet & Ink.

And a few things that I'd like to add...

Flamingo pink dress from Marchesa, pink pomanders from Fiore Blossoms, preppy plates from Rosanna.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

black & yellow

Several black and yellow weddings have been making the blog circuit lately. I never thought I'd be so attracted to this combination, but it is so striking, bold, and chic. I thought I'd share pictures from a few favorites.

The first wedding is Sarah & Nick, featured on Brooklyn Bride. Photos from David Turner, flowers by vale-of-enna.

The bridal bouquet of ranunculus and rice flowers.

Heavy square cubes lined with lemon slices decorated the aisle, and then moved to the tables for the reception.

And next, Janet & Roy from The Bride's Cafe. Photos by Aaron Delesie, flowers from Milli Fiore. I love the cattleya bridal bouquet. So couture!

And finally, some gorgeous inspiration boards from Snippet & Ink in our featured palette.

Update! Lemiga Events just planned a yellow and black girls night out in Vegas, as part of a great birthday weekend. Look at the TP they found! Now that's taking care of the details my friends!

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

I'm home!

But just doing a very short post today. Lots of unpacking to do, e-mails from clients to catch up on, and a party to plan for a one-year old (Noah of course! I can't believe how a year can fly by).

But while in Atlanta, I got to do one of my favorite things; buy regional wedding magazines from someplace other than Seattle! I love checking out what is going on in other areas. There are always noticeable differences and great new ideas to bring home.

One find I loved from an issue I picked up...the "Wisteria" champagne flutes and martini glasses from CB2. Gorgeous! The price? Totally unexpected. $2.95 each! What a steal for hand-blown stemware with such beautiful etched birds and branches. Hurry now, before I scoop them all up.

Monday, May 19, 2008

A bit and a book...

This is my first ever blogging experience, a warning that it won't be nearly what you've come to expect from Alexa. Her posts are always more than one could hope for, full of witty comments, fabulous ideas and the most amazing flowers. After such a sweet introduction from Alexa, the pressure to come up with all things great, as she always does, was huge but I was up for the challenge. I had envisioned sharing a week filled with posts about weddings and creative ideas and things I love, but I am catching a plane this afternoon, last minute, so there will be just one.

If you're one of Alexa's loyal readers, as I am, you may remember her post about my new company, Unveiled. I've been planning weddings and events for some time now, but only recently decided to dive in head first and start advertising. To my surprise and delight, I've actually got three new weddings for this summer and fall in addition to the three I already had scheduled. To be a part of such a memorable occasion is truly an honor. I am a total planner, addicted to organizing and the office supply store, have an everlasting love affair with design and beautiful things and am bit of a control freak, so this business is a perfect fit.

Upon the launch of my website, my mom got me a book as a sort of congratulations gift. The book has turned out to be such a fabulous read and although I'm not through it yet, I have a six year old, a husband and two other jobs besides Unveiled so getting through a book takes me ages, I highly recommend it to anyone who has ever been married, ever wants to be married or is curious about what women really think about weddings. It is a compilation of short stories about twenty-seven very different women and their actual experiences with marriage and weddings. The book is called Altared, edited by Colleen Curran and written by top women authors. This book is a must read and I strongly suggest you pick up a copy and indulge in the honesty, true love, hilarity and often bitter sweet moments this book has to offer.

With that, I am off to the airport. Thank you for taking time out of your busy day to read what I had to say and I only hope to be invited back again as a guest blogger and offer the posts that this great blog so deserves.

~Katy Leiser

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Welcome Katy!

My dear friend Katy of Unveiled Events has graciously agreed to guest blog this week while I'm away. I left on Thursday to surprise my sister at her graduation from Samford University in Birmingham (Good job Katie Gro! Your generous heart is an inspiration.).

I know you'll love Katy--she has impeccable taste and amazing ideas, so I can't wait to see what she comes up with! And I'll see you all in a week!

Signing off for now...