diy // felt rosette fall wreath.

diy // felt rosette fall wreath.

In the spirit of Fall, my patio is all kinds of pumpkin'd out. Which gots me thinking: A nice Fall wreath would tie it all together. But I didn't want just any normal wreath. Oh, no no no. Of course I had to do something different! So enter snazzy felt rosettes. I've always loved the idea of felt rosettes but never knew a classy way to use them without looking 'too cheesy crafty'. Although the idea of felt rosettes on grapevine wreaths are nothing new, so it's been challenging trying to figure out how to make it really unique from the pack. Here's what I came up with:

diy // felt rosette fall wreath.

Materials // Grapevine wreath. 10-12 felt sheets of various colors (I've used 4 shades of orange). 6-8 flower stems. Scissors. Permanent Marker. Glue gun. CD case and/or Paper towel holder.

How-to // 1. Using a permanent marker, trace circles onto the felt sheet using a CD case and/or Paper towel holder. I used both 'cause I like the idea of varying rosette sizes. Two (maaaybe 3) is the max number of circles that can fit onto a felt sheet. // 2. Cut out circles. Don't cut along the black permanent pen trace, instead cut inside the pen trace. That way, no black markings will be seen on your rosettes. // 3. Now with your newly acquired felt circle, cut a wonky imperfect spiral all the way to the middle. The wonkier, the better! It adds a bit of character to the rosette! // 4. Starting from the outside edge, roll up the spiral. Make sure the bottom of the rosette is flat as you roll along. // 5. When done rolling, glue gun the remaining piece of felt onto the rosette. // 6. Repeat steps 1 to 5 until you have the desired number of rosettes in need. // 7. Start playing around with a design in mind! Then commit by sticking the flower stems in and glue gunning the rosettes onto the wreath.

diy // felt rosette fall wreath.
diy // felt rosette fall wreath.
diy // felt rosette fall wreath.
diy // felt rosette fall wreath.
diy // felt rosette fall wreath.

In hindsight, I probably should've scaled back on the glittery flower stems. Kinda takes away from the felt rosettes and grapevine wreath itself, 'cause that wreath looks like it's on fiy-ah a la Hunger Games style. Perhaps, place the the flower stems behind the wreath? Or go minimalist next time and let the felt rosettes do all the talking. But overall, I am diggin' the different textures on this wreath. Now on the hunt for a mini stuffed fox to place inside of it!

diy // felt rosette fall wreath.
diy // felt rosette fall wreath.

besos ... jin.

diy // photo valentine card.

diy // homemade valentine cards to the girlfriends.

Because nobody does these anymore. Well, I'm reviving and bringing it back, baby. Here's a good ol' fashion homemade Valentine's card made with love coming your way. Sealed, stamped and delivered. (Seriously, who does that anymore??) You know that means a ton of something special if somebody is mailing a handwritten card to ya. Viva La Snail Mail!

diy // homemade valentine cards to the girlfriends.

Materials // Photos. Washi tape. Brown card stock. Double-sided tape or Glue Dots.

diy // homemade valentine cards to the girlfriends.
diy // homemade valentine cards to the girlfriends.

Other than V, the only other 'loves' of my life are my bestest best girlfriends. My confidantes, my backbones, my fellow daydreamers. Sisters from another mother and father. Each and every one of these girls are the complete opposites of me. Why would I want besties exactly like me? That would be boring. And weirdly predictable. But opposites do attract and these rainbow of personalities complement all facets of me. I love you, gals! Y'all inspire me to do this - dreaming and concocting and writing and mailing ... to you! 

besos ... jin.

diy // l-o-v-e ombre yarn letters.

diy // l-o-v-e yarn letters.

One evening, a hubster's help and a lil vino will get ya through this deceivingly easy DIY. That's right. Deceivingly easy. I must admit, at first glance the thought of constantly wrapping and weaving seemed a little intimidating, thinking it would take forevers. But I went for it anyways 'cause I'm irrational like that. Oh the things we do to have that certain unique decor that just clicks with your own aesthestic style, no matter how time-consuming it seems. 4 hours later and ... I'm done??

(I'm sure switching out the B and S of the original planned B-E-S-O with L and V might have something to do with cutting the time in half.) But hey, what a pleasant surprise to find a 'challenging' project to be notsobad. Even more of a reason to L-O-V-E this project. Huzzah.

diy // l-o-v-e yarn letters.
diy // l-o-v-e yarn letters.

Materials // Paper Mache Letters. Yarn. Scissors. Mod Podge.

How To // My Sister's Suitcase Love Yarn Letters Tutorial.

Note: Besides the obvious use of different yarn colors from the tutorial, I've opted to use Mod Podge instead of a glue gun. It's been almost a week since finishing this yarn project and so far so good with the Mod Podge.

diy // l-o-v-e yarn letters.
diy // l-o-v-e yarn letters.
diy // l-o-v-e yarn letters.

besos ... jin.

diy // l-o-v-e glitter cake toppers.

diy // L-O-V-E glitter cake toppers.

I have a love affair with cake toppers. Particularly the handmade, simple ones. Often times I don't care what the cake flavor is. (That's a lie. Red Velvet or Lemon or Green Tea or any of my top 30 flavors all the way.) But as long as it's unique, fun, pretty - with a touch of whimsy - yah, I guess I really don't care what flavor it is!

diy // L-O-V-E glitter cake toppers.

Materials // Glitter paper. Skewers. Pencil. Scissors. Tape.

How To // 1. Take the glitter paper and turn it over to the backside. This is where you free-hand the L-O-V-E letters. Make them any size, and as wonky, as you like. The more imperfect, the better. Be sure to pencil in the letters backwards! // 2. Cut out the letters. // 3. Tape the skewers onto the backside of the letters. // 4. Go make some cakes/cupcakes pretty!

diy // L-O-V-E glitter cake toppers.
diy // L-O-V-E glitter cake toppers.
diy // L-O-V-E glitter cake toppers.

A much more affordable and temporary version than these BHLDN lovelies, innit?

besos ... jin.

diy // thread heart wall art.

diy // thread heart wall art.

For some reason this DIY project had looked better in my head than in real life. Maybe it's the poorly executed DIYness or misjudged placement above the (oh so green) couch, but these hearts needed a better styled vignette to give it justice. Fa sho. (In hindsight the space between the living room and the kitchen, underneath the branch art, is suddenly looking more of an appropriate spot.) Nevertheless, it needed minimal materials and anything that needs so little to make must be uber easy! (It was.)

diy // thread heart wall art.

Materials // Yarn. Push pins. Scissors.

The hardest part was actually deciding where to place the push pins. *Cue in major OCD* There was a lot of eye-balling and semi-measuring and re-adjusting. Many minutes (and tiny holes) later, came the fun part. Yarn crazy! I circled the heart about 3 times before zigzaging aimlessly all across. My only regret: it obviously needed more yarn. Thicker the better, I've came to realize, to really make the wall art stand out as a bold statement.

diy // thread heart wall art.
diy // thread heart wall art.

Next time, changing things up. Ombre, perhaps. (Always in hindsight. D'oh.) And a better vignette! (Again, this hindsight thing.)

Hope y'alls came out better! 

besos ... jin.

diy // gold glitter xo.

diy // gold glitter xo

Starting off the slew of Valentine DIYs with something so easy, it doesn't even need directions. (Mod Podge first then glitter away, if you're really that clueless!) So that way, I'll really blow your socks off when Valentine DIY decor #3478539 makes it's blog debut next week. Like what I did there? Eh? Eh? Oh the power of teasers!

diy // gold glitter xo

Materials // XO Wood Letters. Mod Podge. Paintbrush. Glitter.

diy // gold glitter xo
diy // gold glitter xo

It never ceases to amaze me how something so insanely simple to make can instantly change the home mood. Oh yes. Things are starting to feel very swoon festive around here!

besos ... jin.

diy // gold pine cone garland.

diy // christmas pinecone wreath.

Another Christmas project that was supposed to be done last Christmas (waited too late, of course) aaand here we are a whole year later. Trying again. At the last minute. Of course. ;-) But I was determined to actually get it done this year, being our first Christmas in Austin and all, and so the Monday before Christmas I got busy. Check it out!

diy // christmas pinecone wreath.

Materials // Pine cones. Gold Metallic Spray PaintScrew Eyes (any reasonable size will do). Newspaper. Drill (not pictured). String. Scissors. Plyers (not pictured). Glue gun (optional / not pictured).

How to // 1. Lay some newspapers down outside, plop your pine cones down and spray paint away! // 2. Let paint dry. // 3. I ain't gonna lie. It's so much easier to drill a tiny hole in the pine cone first before applying the screw eyes. But if you can do it by hand, go for it. Use plyers for better grippage when getting those screw eyes in! // 4. Thread the string (of your choice) through the screw eyes. You can tie a knot at each screw eye as you go, but I'm OCD and I like my pine cones evenly spaced. To get that even-ess, skip the tying knot part, lay garland-in-process out on the floor, and shift pine cones up and down the string. Once satisfied with the spacing, bust out the glue gun and glue string to screw eye. // 5. Find a good place to show off that pine cone garland snazzyness!

diy // christmas pinecone wreath.
diy // christmas pinecone wreath.
diy // christmas pinecone wreath.
diy // christmas pinecone wreath.
diy // christmas pinecone wreath.

At one point I wanted to gild gold leaves onto the pine cones. Why not? Had some sheets left over from the Terra Cotta Pot project. But that would've taken a lot longer than need be (no bueno for last minute projects, you see) and besides, the gold metallic spray paint stills gives a nice pretty sheen. Now my tiny little living room window looks all festive and wintery and shiny and new for Christmas and New Year's! 

besos ... jin.

diy // christmas photo wreath.

DIY Christmas Photo Wreath.

I know, I know. Ain't gotta tell me. Another last minute holiday project done a couple of days before Christmas and just

now

posting 2 days after Christmas. But let's get past that teeny weeny lil fact. Crazy busy holiday schedules don't play nice on time management!

DIY Christmas Photo Wreath.

So on to the real reason why we're here. The photo wreath. I did tons of thinking and planning and thinking on this one (about a year) and when I finally got around to DIYing (albeit last minute), I purposely made the photo wreath sort of seasonal neutral. Transitional, if you will. There's no use going all out Christmas-y when you're only gonna have the wreath up for a bit. But with the right color palette, I feel the glittery goldness will sneak it's way well past New Year's. Maybe even make an early cameo next year around October when the Fall decors come out to play. Here's how I did it:

DIY Christmas Photo Wreath.
DIY Christmas Photo Wreath.
DIY Christmas Photo Wreath.
DIY Christmas Photo Wreath.

Materials // Styrofoam wreath. 8 Flower stems. Tons of 2" or 3" mini photos. (I resized my pictures using Photoshop). Tape. Glue gun. Ribbon. Plyers (not pictured). Safety pin.

How To // 1. Arrange the mini photos in a circular pattern. Use the styrofoam wreath as a guide as I have. Or not. Up to you! Play around until desired collage and arrangement catches your fancy. // 2. Use small pieces of tape to tape down your circular photo collage. Tape on top of the photos. This is just a temporary secure. // 3. Now flip the collage over, backside facing up, and heavily secure the pictures with tape, tape, tape. // 4. Flip the collage over once more and remove the tiny pieces of tape. // 5. Glue gun one side of the styrofoam wreath. // 6. Very quickly attach your collage onto the styrofoam wreath. To do this, lay your photo collage flat, backside facing up, and plop the styrofoam on it. This way you have a better idea where to place the styrofoam wreath, as evenly as possible, onto the photo collage. // 7. Time to add the flower stems! Stick them into the styrofoam in an even pattern. If the stems are too long, simply cut them shorter with plyers. // 8. The ribbon can easily be roped around the wreath. Just shimmy the ribbon between the pix and foam. You might have to undo some of the glue work, but that's ok. // 9. Safety pin the ribbon together.

DIY Christmas Photo Wreath.
DIY Christmas Photo Wreath.

I absolutely LOVE this quirky spin on the holiday wreath - if you're like me and love anything unconventional and weird and different and in search of a fresh way to display the loads of pix you've taken over the past year. (Trigger happy? Fist bump.)

besos ... jin.

diy // christmas photo tree.

diy photo xmas tree 2013.

Materials // Photos of various sizes. Washi tape. 

diy photo xmas tree 2013.
diy photo xmas tree 2013.
diy photo xmas tree 2013.

If the Christmas branch ain't doin' it for ya and your tiny space, I gots another space savin' Christmas tree solution to offer: the photo tree. It virtually takes no space whatsoever and it's a fun, unique twist to display personal pix of the past year in a somewhat unexpected way. Can we say ... conversation starter? Slap on a lil gold-striped washi tape. (Or hot pink, like I originally had planned.) Perhaps a glittery topper for added festive happiness. But ya know, I can live with it as is. The understated facade looks a bit classy, no? Kinda draws out the quiet humbleness of seeing snippets of your life / past year clumped together like so. Literally like seeing the big picture!

besos ... jin.

diy // christmas branch.

diy xmas branch 2013.
diy xmas branch 2013.
diy xmas branch 2013.
diy xmas branch 2013.

If you're kinda pressed for space like we are - absolutely no place to put a Christmas tree or festive decorations around a hearth, etc. - you kinda have to get creative and think up ways to have that tree and stockings and ornaments and the whole cake (and eat it, too!) without taking up too much of the already precious space. So try this. Take an ordinary branch, put it on a wall (in our case, between our room and the laundry closet) and bedazzle the hell out of it. Totally customizable to your own taste, which I luuurve, so get on with your bad self, girl, and decorate to your heart's content! This year I opted for a Charlie Brown inspired tree. Been on a minimalist binge lately and I find that this style gives me the most flexibility with my own personal taste without compromising any Jinisms. Marching to the beat of your own drum, ftw! (Seriously, get on with your bad self!)

Now sit back and revel in the awesomeness of a Christmas tree and stocking holder in one.

Winning.

besos ... jin.

diy // gold polka dot pumpkin.

DIY // gold polka dot pumpkin.

Been meaning to spruce up that pumpkin you've picked up weeks ago, but don't have time to deck it out and just now realizing Halloween is next week? Awesome. We're in the same boat. Into gold detailing like me? Double awesome. Grab some gold paint and a sponge. Ho-hum ordinary pumpkin, no more!

DIY // gold polka dot pumpkin.
DIY // gold polka dot pumpkin.

Materials // Gold acrylic paint. Sponge of any kind. Small container to hold paint. Pumpkin.

How to // 1. Sponge can be any shape, size, type. If you're like me and too cheap to buy an already affordable sponge, an old kitchen sponge will do. Just cut out a circle and you're good to go. // 2. Pour a small amount of gold paint into the container and dip sponge into paint. // 3. Stamp away! Make sure you press a little harder into the crevices of the pumpkin to get some paint in it's nooks and crannies.

DIY // gold polka dot pumpkin.
DIY // gold polka dot pumpkin.

Totally lovin' how my raggity old kitchen sponge makes the most imperfect gold polka dots ever. Kinda gives a fun, rustic vibe, no? Now to get fall festive on my patio and find a spot for all that imperfect gold-dotted pumpkiness!

besos ... jin.

pumpkin tree branches.

mini pumpkins on a branch.
mini pumpkins on a branch.
mini pumpkins on a branch.
mini pumpkins on a branch.
mini pumpkins on a branch.
mini pumpkins on a branch.
mini pumpkins on a branch.
mini pumpkins on a branch.
mini pumpkins on a branch.

I saw these pumpkin branch lovelies at Whole Foods and immediately picked up a 'bouquet' without hesitation. Anything with an unexpected twist - I'm on it! Actually, those aren't really mini pumpkins on a stick. They're really ornamental eggplants, or edible eggplants, if ya bravely curious enough to stir-fry away. Def gonna give that a go one day! But purely on the ornamental side, I'm in love with how these branches are utterly simple, yet adds a quiet whimsical-fall-foliage-in-the-forest statement piece in a classy way. Stick them in wine and Perrier bottles. Boom. Good to go. Festive autumn merriments, à la country chic meets city coffee shop, in just a couple of steps. Happy Friday!

besos ... jin.

{kitchen de ferrer} st. patty's day noms.

What can I say, I'm a sucker for gimmicky holidays. St. Patty's Day no exception. Here are some quick and easy leprechaun snackaroos that my festive little self made throughout the week of. And yah, I'm well aware I'm just now posting this. Procrastinator, I am. Or am I ... uber early? =P

st. patty's day noms.
st. patty's day noms.

1 -- Shamrock Chips with Hummus.

Sometimes the simplest of ideas just blows me away, like this recipe from Zakka Life. Simplicity at it's finest. Literally took me less than 10 minutes to make! Serve with your favorite hummus and life is good.

st. patty's day noms.

2 -- Mini Green Tea Buttermilk Cuppycakes.

Started off as Mini Green Tea Donuts adapted from A Beautiful Mess's version but had to scrap the whole mini donut idea after a few attempts. There were just too many issues to deal with and in the end, the mini donuts looked like mini cupcakes. So I proceeded down the mini cuppycake route instead. Glad I switched pans! Pot of gold right here, green tea cupcake addicts! I've been trying to find the perfect green tea cupcake recipe for the longest time and this *pointing at pic* is def a keeper. I'm still on the hunt for a light and fluffy green tea frosting recipe, so if ya know of one, send it to this gal. But for now, this Matcha Buttercream Frosting from Matcha Source is actually pretty matchalicious.

Note: The quality of matcha green tea powder does matter! Give Teavana's matcha a go. One of the best powders you'll ever bake with. A bit pricey, but so worth it! Don't thank me. Thank Teavana. ;-)

st. patty's day noms.

3 -- Mint Chocolate Chip Pancakes.

Greener and slightly more scrumptious looking pancakes can be seen here by Love and Olive Oil. This pancake griddlin' business, man. It's truly a skill. One I have no patience for. But for those who are like me and can't stand cooking/baking for more than 30 minutes - bad news. There really is no way out of this one. (As if my pic evidence wasn't enough.) So turn that high heat down to medium and wait it out!

Note: Go on and add more mint extract than what the recipe calls for if you're into mint as much as I am. The amount of mint in the recipe was a little too subtle for my liking. So mint away!

st. patty's day noms.
st. patty's day noms.

4 -- Lucky Charms + Matcha Green Tea Latte.

This really needs no words. Another simple idea with a huge holiday impact. And why not take that green milk to the next level with a Green Tea Latte? Don't skip out on the green food coloring if your green needs a lil pop! 

These green foodie noms are lookin' like leprechaun bait, innit? Happy belated (or uber early! hah!) St. Patty's Day, homies!

besos ... jin.

{kitchen de ferrer} heart-shaped valentine noms.

What started off as a fun twist to our homemade Valentine's Day dinner about 6ish years ago has become a yearly tradition for me + V. We really turned this heart-shaped foodie thayng into a sport, with each year more ambitious than the last. This heart-shaped challenge is the reason why Valentine's Day is one of my favorite holidays of the year! Straight from our kitchen, here are Jincent's heart-shaped foodie noms of 2013:

valentine lunch 2013.
valentine lunch 2013.
valentine lunch 2013.

1 -- Mini Red Velvet Cupcakes with Arrow. 

I love this cupid's arrow concept from the original cakepopster genius, herself, Miss Bakerella!  A few changes from the Bakerella tutorial were made, like using skewers instead of lollipop sticks, as well as using a heart craft punch for the bigger hearts. The little hearts were quickly hand-drafted, then cut out. A gold sharpie to draw in the feather lines, tape to adhere the hearts to the skewers andVoila!

From simple to spruced up cuppycake in minutes!

valentine lunch 2013.

2 -- Heart-Shaped Strawberry Kabob. 

These need no explaining. They really do look that easy!

valentine lunch 2013.
valentine lunch 2013.

3 -- Angel Sweet Tomato Hearts. 

Another heart idea that needs no explaining. The 'recipe' by Eye Candy originally called for Cherry tomatoes, but our local grocery store didn't have any on hand. So we went with the next best thing. Still worked out! Looks like Cherry tomatoes, anyways!

valentine lunch 2013.
valentine lunch 2013.

4 -- Heart-Shaped Carrots. 

So my carrot hearts didn't come out as nicely as Sophistimom's.  But that's ok. I like my wonky geometric hearts. They kinda look like V's. V for Vince. ;-)

valentine lunch 2013.
valentine lunch 2013.

5 -- Heart-Shaped Beef Pinwheels. (With Heart-Shaped Quinoa.)

This was all V. He was inspired by a heart-shaped cinnamon roll that I had stumbled upon and wanted to do a savory version. Shallot + Chive cheese, spinach, sun-dried tomatoes, plank steak. All rolled into a heart-shaped pinwheel. Held together with toothpicks. A little ambitious for me, but like the aspiring gourmet chef that V is, he made it look easy. And it turned out ... well, let's just say I heart it. ;-)

Hope this inspires your own homemade Valentine's meal in the future! Keep it fun + heartilicious, my peoples!

besos ... jin.

{kitchen de ferrer} ombre valentine cake push pops.

ombre valentine cake push pops.
ombre valentine cake push pops.
ombre valentine cake push pops.
ombre valentine cake push pops.
ombre valentine cake push pops.
ombre valentine cake push pops.

It's no secret I would rather take pictures of my food (and eat them!) than bake/cook them. And it's no secret I take even more pics when I actually do bake/cook. Hard work can do that to ya. In this case (if you couldn't already tell from the multitude of aftermath visuals), I worked hard! And pretty dang proud of it. =D

The making of a cake push pop, it seems, is pretty straightforward. Bake a sheet cake, level it off, cut circles out with push pop container, pipe in cream cheese icing in between cake layers. Sounds easy enough! The Jin version is slightly different. Bake mini cupcakes using a mini muffin pan instead! Once cooled, cut off the cupcake tops, leaving the bottom portions (perfect height and width!) to be squeezed into the push pop containers. No need to level off!

As for the ombre part, I opted for various Duncan Hines cake flavors. Red velvet, strawberry and yellow cake. Half the yellow cake batter I added food coloring (red, orange + yellow) to get that nice bright red color.

Aaand construct away! Cake, icing, cake, icing, etc. Top off with lip sprinkles. Perhaps take the decor step further with some washi tape fun. Makes for 'derrricious-looking' (as Hanh puts it) and 'what the hell these push pops are delicious' (as Eric puts it) Valentine treats for Jincent's closest Austin friends!

besos ... jin.