Category Archives: diy reception

Recipe of the Week

From Keri’s Kitchen, of DelaneyPhotoJewelry

Perfect Cake Pops

I have been in love with the idea of cake pops since I saw my first one a year or two ago at Starbucks. It was so pretty that I couldn’t resist; I had to have it. It was terrible. I have tried many since then, but I have only ever had one that I loved. I decided to attempt them myself for my daughters 6th birthday and couldn’t be happier with the results. Okay, I could be, but I received so many compliments that it made up what I saw as glaring defects.

These are the steps I took, but more importantly, what I would do differently the next time to make them perfect. You will need:

One box cake mix (your favorite flavor)

½ Cup creamy icing (your favorite flavor)

1 bag (14oz) Melting candy (I used white)

Cake Pop sticks (about 35)

Nonpareils

Cake Pop stand

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Start with your favorite cake mix (I used a very moist carrot cake) and blend it according to the directions on the box. Then bake it as follows: preheat oven to 350 degrees, spray one 13 x 9 x 2 inch pan with cooking spray. Bake 35 to 40 minutes. Cool in pan for 10 minutes and then transfer to a cooling rack. Once completely cooled, place it in a large bowl. Use your hands to crumble cake until no large pieces remain. You may just have to eat a few to make it perfect. Add icing and mix with hands until completely blended and roll into balls.

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If you can roll a tight ball with your hands, you wont need a silicone mold. I will make mine slightly smaller next time (the size of a large marble) so that I can reuse my stand. But if you are using a stand that has the holes further apart then I would make them about 1.5” across. I used a scoop to make them all the same size and then, once rolled, I spread them out on a cookie sheet lined with wax paper. Place them in the fridge for a minimum of 2 hours.

3

Melt your candy according to the package. I used a small double boiler (shown below) to keep the  candy deeper.  Dip your sticks in the melted candy and place in the rolled balls. Wait until the candy has hardened before dipping the pops. I recommend placing the cookie sheet back in the fridge and taking them out 2 at a time to dip. They need to stay cool to harden the coating faster.

4

I found myself opening the freezer drawer and holding the pops in the cool air while spinning to keep them from dripping.  You have a minutes or so to decorate before they harden completely. So once I felt the candy wouldn’t drip into my bowl of nonpareils I gently set the cake pop in them to coat.

6

I found this great, colapsable display and finished it off with a roll of hot pink glitter tape for a fun party appearance. My daughter squealed when she saw it. It’s the little things!

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I highly recommend having your gathering at about 2 in the afternoon, in between meals when everyone is hungry. They will taste even better and the compliments will have you beaming. Lol

Keri O’Hara

DelaneyJewelry.Etsy.com

http://www.delaneyjewelrydesigns.com

DIY Wedding Inspiration

By MsFormaldehyde

Scott and Jessica threw a DIY wedding at https://www.facebook.com/SycuanResortWeddings

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Home made bird cage and table top bird pictures and hand painted frames. The bride and mom did this all themselves.

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It was great to have Jessica’s father walk her down the aisle he has been battling cancer and this was the best picture

for me to see.

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Jessica proved with a lot of hard work and thrift store shopping you can do your wedding on a budget ladies!

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You can find here veil here for 20.00 https://www.etsy.com/listing/76132984/birdcage-wedding-veil-wedding-veil

she also made her hair flower it was a special order

Hope you enjoy Jessica’s wedding she looks amazing and so happy!

Wedding Champagne and Flowery Foods

GARDENIAS!!! This flower makes my heart sing! It is such a beautiful and exotic wedding flower. These past couple of weeks, we’ve been in the midst of the last warm weather southern gardenia blossoms. I have two of these buxom girls lazing next to me right now in a little bowl of water. While doing backstrokes, their fully open butter cream florescence wafts a heady invitation through the air. I can’t help but bury my nose in their sensual aromatic beauty each time I pass by them.

Gardenia jasminoides….are they edible? A petal popped quickly into the mouth, raked teasingly across the tongue, teeth gently nibbling to release the narcotic fragrance. Rapture!! Yes!! Gardenia j. is edible! Used by chefs and sommelier in ways similar to the addition of edible rose petals. A delightful taste sensation, although a complete surprise, given that this flower does not easily give up her perfumed scent mysteries. The taste is light, sweet, a bit buttery and Gardenia fragrant. The scent of this flower translates accurately to the taste buds, filling your mouth with it’s rich, yet delicate sexy perfume. It’s petals, I shred, pluck, candy and toss au naturelle as often as possible.

When, where and how to apply Ms. Gardenia’s beautiful wiles Writer’s choice: Float a fully opened 2″ bloom in an open mouthed flute of chilled Roederer’s Cristal Champagne. What bride or wedding anniversary couple wouldn’t be enthralled by this lovely romantic sentiment? Pluck the petals, trim the bitter base end and layer into your favorite salad of fresh garden greens – add a handful of pitted fresh lychees for taste and texture interest. Toss with the lightest non-seasoned vinaigrette dressing. Candy the Petals. Rinse and thoroughly dry pesticide-free gardenia petals. Using a small paintbrush, thinly coat the petals with lightly beaten egg whites. Set gardenia petals on a plate covered with superfine sugar. Sprinkle the blossoms with more superfine sugar. Gently shake to remove the excess. Place on waxed paper and allow to dry for several hours. These can be used to adorn any number of wedding food offerings and adds an elegant touch to wedding cakes.

Gardenia Ice Cream

INGREDIENTS

2 cups of heavy whipping cream

2 cups of whole milk

1/2 vanilla bean, opened up, seeded (include seeds in mixture)

3/4 cup sugar (1/2 cup if you prefer less sweet)

Petals of 2 or 3 Gardenias (wash them well. Cut leaves up. Home grown gardenias are best)

PREPARATION Bring milk, cream, vanilla bean and seeds, half of the sugar, and chopped gardenia petals to a simmer in heavy saucepan (at least 2 quart in size), stir to melt sugar, remove from heat and let the flavors develop for 30-45 minutes. Meanwhile, in a separate bowl, whisk 8 egg yolks and remaining sugar till blended and lighter in color.

For Diabetics: Use Whey Low Ice Cream Sugar(low carb, low calorie, and natural). It works perfectly. Add about 1/3 of the heated mixture slowly to the egg yolk mixture, whisking while adding. (this keeps egg from clotting) Then whisk all of egg mixture into cream mixture. Reheat, whisking continually, bring to simmer, but not a boil. Whisk and heat until the mixture thickens, about 10 minutes. A spoon dipped into mixture should stay lightly coated, and a finger run down the center should leave a line in the custard. Remove from heat. Put custard into a bowl in an ice bath (partial sink of water with ice works, to cool it quickly) Stir every five minutes or so. When cooled off, strain, put covered in fridge for several hours or overnight. Then use your ice cream maker. Freeze it to “soft-serve” consistency, put in another container and set in freezer to finish.

*NOTE – Be sure to use natural blooms from non-pesticide sprayed plants.

This post brought to you by Lily Fleur

Setting The Mood Just Right

Rose Candle Wedding Set by Artist Marcie Forest - Pure Beeswax & Roses - Custom Colors for Unity Ceremony, Memorials, Gifts, Home

 Table decoration is another great way for an eclectic couple to show their personalities however where do you start?  Well here is how I managed to narrow down my choices.

Size – We have all been to a restaurant where there is just not enough space on the table for all the things you have ordered.  Therefore when you decorate your table, make sure you leave enough room for all the cutlery, glasses and plates that maybe used.

Colour Scheme – Unless you are planning on having all the colours of the rainbow then choosing a set of colours will help you get started.  If you are unsure of what colours go with what then try using an interactive colour wheel like this one!

http://colorschemedesigner.com/

Here you can play with the colours to your hearts content until you feel you have the scheme you like.

Real or Fake? – Here I am talking about flowers by the way.  Real flowers add a touch of luxury to the table and if you ask the florist, it doesn’t have to cost a fortune!  However we must not think fake flowers as being the inferior cousin of the real ones because unless you are the Queen of Hearts from Alice in Wonderland, painting real flowers isn’t the best use of your time.  Fake flowers come in every single colour under the sun and best of all, you can buy them in advance!

Alternatives to flowers? – What if you are not a flower person?  Maybe you are allergic to mother nature then there are other decorations you can use such as sculptures or candlestick holders.  How about some board games for your guest to play while they are waiting at the table?  Whatever you choose just keep in mind of one thing, height!  A piece of decoration that blocks the view of other guests on the table is a little rude (unless that is your aim).  So keep everything low.

Less is More – By now you must have plenty of ideas but that doesn’t mean you have to use them all or your table will be overflowing.  Now is the time to pick and choose the things that co-ordinate.

Practice makes perfect – If you have brought all the elements, why not practice arranging your table?  All this time you have been using your imagination, picturing how it might look but now you can bring it to life.  Find a table or just use the floor and layout your pieces as you picture them.  Is it how you imagine it or do you need to fill in some gaps?  Once you are done, you can then take a picture of it and send it to your venue/reception so they know what to do with all your things.

I sincerely hope this has helped you with your wedding plans and GOOD LUCK!

This post brought to you by Isla of Kitty Kanzashi

Peaches and Cream Kanzashi (Limited Edition) haircomb

The 80/20 Rule of Weddings

Whenever you are dealing with any sizable crowd you can expect only 20% of people to get involved.  Only 20% are going to shake it on the dance floor.  Only 20% are going to get silly with the photo props.  Only 20% will stick around to the very end.  The other 80% will sit quietly on the sidelines absorbing the atmosphere.

 

I don’t know about you but these numbers have never sat well with me.  I’m always a part of the 20% doers and really appreciate it when others get involved too.  So what are you supposed to do to get the reception hopping?? 

 

Hire excellent event entertainers first!  If your entertainers are mild mannered or not super qualified for weddings, expect a ho-hum response from your guests.  There is nothing worse that an event where there is no chemistry between the entertainers and the crowd.  I would even go so far as to hire one or two professional crowd pleasers.  You know the people that walk around getting everybody hyped (think cruise ship director).  If you need to save some cash ask an outgoing friend or relative to take on this task, just make sure to have them introduced to the crowd first.

 

Activities are a great way to inspire people to get off of there rears.  The typical guest book can be transformed into more elaborate spectacles.  Right now there are a ton of new options for unusual guest books.  Fingerprint trees get everyone excited about the visual outcome.  Receipt box guest books invite people to write more than their signature. Have you heard of a cootie catcher?  These area really fun interactive way to educate your guests on your quirky habits and tid bits.

Wedding Guest Book (Medium) Birds of a Feather Fingerprint Tree Canvas THE KIT (guestbook, ink pads, pens) Wedding Word Search Cootie Catcher (PDF - DESIGN ONLY)Prompted Message Guest Book - Hitched & Happy - Set of 200

Remember that no matter what, this day will be amazing because a couple has decided to become one.  Even if no one jumps up to the Electric Slide or shoots off finger pistols with the photo props this is going to be one of the very best days EVER!

 Krissy  

Make Believe’N

Stylish Without Being Trendy

Trends come and go.  The poofy sleeves inspired by the wedding of Princess Diana and Prince Charles will forever date the weddings of the late seventies and early eighties.  The mustache photo props of the here and now will date our time as well.  This said, how do you do the fun and stylish things in your wedding without being part of a fad?  Simple, you choose only the items that reflect your personality and nothing else.  Period.  It can’t be a fad or trendy if it is truly a representation of you as a couple.

 If you LOVE mustaches and the quirky humor they inspire then go for it.  But, if you just think they are kind of fun and want a photo prop I urge you to become more creative.  Were you an equestrian as a child?  Why not get a pony on a stick instead?  Is he in any armed forces or any profession that could easily be identified with hats and/or accessories?  A fireman’s helmet or military saber could be very cool props.

mustache

 Details

The strapless mermaid dresses that have hugged our curves for some time now may be beautiful but do they really scream YOU?  Are you more of a capped sleeve kind of gal like I was?  Do you think that cinched waists of the 40s and 50s styles would flaunt your curves with just as much gusto?


50's style "Uptown Doll" wedding dress
I love mason jars and the fun things that can be done with them, but is that really the look that your fiancé would want to take home and decorate with?  I suggest purchasing décor for your wedding that you would be happy to take home and display.  This way you are really showing your style and getting the added benefit of personalizing your home as a newly married couple.

I think you get my point.  Be true to you and you cannot go wrong.  You will never look back at your photos and wonder why in the world did I do that???

Krissy

Make Believe’N 

DIY Photo Editing

You can have great photos, even if you don’t have the budget to pay your photographer to edit them all for you!  Many photographers offer a limited number of edited JPEGs in your photo package.  But, if you have other good shots and even a very basic editing program, you can take mediocre pictures to memories worth keeping!  (Most computers come with a basic photo-editing program, but if yours doesn’t have one, you can do most of the following with just the editing programs that photo-ordering sites provide.)

First, let’s take a look at our original shot:
Original image
Before we do anything else, let’s get our dimensions where we want them.  I opted to crop this image to an 8×10″; make sure that you crop it to whatever dimensions will best suit your needs.  (Standard photo albums hold 4×6″ photos.)  *Hint: off-centering your subject(s) a little can make a more interesting picture.*  So, here is the cropped picture:
Now, on this picture, the shadows are so deep you can’t really see the faces.  I went to the “brighten” tool and just lightened it until the faces were more visible.  Be careful with this tool (especially if your dress is white!), because if you overdo it, you tend to lose some definition in the brighter areas of the picture.  Here is the shot brightened up:
As, you probably noticed, just brightening it made the dark parts of the picture (in the background, etc.) look a little too bright, so I also want to adjust the contrast.  You can make the contrast higher–more bright in the light places and darker in the shadows–or lower–making the brights duller and the shadows lighter.  Depending on your picture, either of these options can be helpful, so play around with it some, to get the image where you want it!  I heightened the contrast here:
This shot looks pretty good, but just as a fun final alternative, I also decided to play with the saturation (color intensity) tool on the following shots.  On the first, I took the saturation down, until the shot looked almost black and white.  The second, I took the saturation up, which just makes the colors pop a little more.  Figure out your preferences and edit accordingly!
These are all pretty easy and quick fixes, but you can easily see how making just those small adjustments makes a BIG difference in the final photo!  Don’t be afraid to try different things until you get just what you want!
This post courtesy of –Amanda of ArtisanMaskers
Persephone - Gothic Beauty Papier-Mache (Paper Mache) Mask in Pale Green and Black
Krissy

>DIY Photo Props

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Carnival Printable PHOTO BOOTH PROPS Customizable - printable download pdf
Carnival Printable Package by Paper and Cake
Okay so you can go out an buy amazing top of the line, high quality photo props for your special day or…..save a ton of moola by buying ‘printable’ props.  I mean come on!!  Are you really going to remember them anyway?  More than likely the person in charge of collecting the props will have had one too many and will not remember. Save yourself the embarrassing conversation later and just do these DIY props 🙂
UNG DRILL Frame black Width: 23 ¼ " Height: 33 ½ " Picture, width: 15 ¾ " Picture, height: 19 ¾ "  Width: 59 cm Height: 85 cm Picture, width: 40 cm Picture, height: 50 cm
Ikea Mirror

Deep Thoughts - Rectangle
Deep Thoughts Rectangle by Goldylocks

Smiley Faces - Lips Printouts by Holly McCaig
Pink Ink Studios

All of those are great DIY printable props but just in case your printer sucks or you just don’t have time for DIY these are a cute and still reasonable alternative!!!!

Photobooth Mustache on a stick and Lips and Glasses and bowties PARTY PACK
Photobooth Party Pack
Krissy Cartwright
Make Believe’N Wedding Alternativess LLC

>Give Your Champagne a Punch!

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I love all fruity sweet drinks.  The discerning palate passed me completely by.  We joke that if it has a screw top or the word Mad in the name I will probably love it.  Classy huh?  Well if you are like me (feel free to admit it here) but might not want the entire wedding reception sporting Boons Farm, try giving Champagne or white wine a punch with frozen fruit cubes.  Here are my favorites 🙂
Peach Ice Cubes
Peach Ice Cubes
Fresh Fruit Cubes
Hibiscus Flower Cubes

Krissy 

Make Believe’N Wedding Alternatives LLC
@makebelieven

>DIY Desserts S’Mores and Cotton Candy

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I don’t care what party I go to I always, ALWAYS look forward to the interesting desserts that are offered.  Here are a couple of non-traditional choices.  S’mores and Cotton Candy.  Pair them with a rustic or carnival theme and you have a show stopper.
S’Mores Bar

How cool would a S’more bar be at your reception?  Make it even better by doing some DIY marshmallows and packaging them up as favors.  This recipe looks amazing and fairly easy to do.  The instructions are light hearted and clear.  Pair these with the unexpected Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups or York Peppermint patties for something even better.

bouncy marshmallows
DIY Fluffy Marshmallows via SmittenKitchen

Are the marshmallows a little daunting for your DIY attempt?  Try out these S’more inspired truffles instead. Yummy!!!!

s'mores truffles
S’more Truffles

Create a signature drink for your festivities.  The Cotton candy Cosmopolitan fits the bill!!!!

Cotton Candy Cosmo

Go sticky sweet and romantic with heart shaped cotton candy sugar cookies.  I like the idea of playing with the colors of cotton candy to match your wedding colors.  Here is a how to on tinting your own sugar to make custom colored cotton candy.  Find a cotton candy machine at Amazon.com here.

Cotton Candy Sugar Cookie Pops

Cookies not your thing???  Cupcakes instead then.  Check out these whimsical cake creations.  I bet you could find a baker to help you create a wedding cake in this style 🙂

Cotton Candy Cupcakes
Hope you aren’t drooling too much.  If you are that’s okay.  Just wipe your chin and make sure no one saw a thing.  Discreet is the key.  I hope you enjoy these tasty DIY ideas as much as I do.  My Pintrest.com explorations when nuts when searching this topic.


Krissy
Make Believe’N Wedding Alternatives LLC