Be sure and check out the SUPER SALE going on now on my Facebook Page! Fabulous deals on out of season merchandise! Click HERE to check it out!

Thursday, March 31, 2011

Jungle Safari Baby Shower Cake

My mom was a hostess of a baby shower last weekend and I just had to share the cute cake she made.  She bought some fondant at Michael’s, colored it, and shaped it into little jungle animals, which she set on the 3 tiered cake iced with buttercream frosting:

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She also made polka dots and zebra stripes out of the fondant.  I was so impressed with her animal-making skills!  These kind of cakes sell for hundreds of dollars around here, so to think that she created this with less than $20 and a little lot of time is pretty incredible.

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She said she learned how to make the animals on You Tube!

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The detail she put into them is just amazing. 

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Of course my favorite is the tiger with her cute little pink bow!

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I’ll share more details from the shower decorations next week, just wait until you see the amazing diaper cake she made!

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Monday, March 28, 2011

I’m Still Here!

Not that anyone has been wondering or worrying since it has been two weeks since my last post, but just a quick note to let you know I am still alive!

My mother-in-law has been visiting for the past 10 days and the sewing/craft room has been very busy to say the least!  She is an excellent seamstress and we have been coming up with all sorts of cute projects to share.  Here is a peek at the current state of my craft room:

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See my new embroidery machine back there?!  Sadly my old hand-me-down bit the dust last week.  I am so excited to have a new machine, it has been a dream to use this past week!

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Ribbon and fabric everywhere!  Some of our completed projects:

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So keep an eye on my Facebook page and Etsy Shop this week, many new items will be listed soon!  Also be sure and check out my mother-in-law’s Etsy shop and Facebook page to see more of her beautiful creations.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Monday Musings

"The English language lacks the words 'to mourn an absence.' For the loss of a parent, grandparent, spouse, child or friend we have all manner of words and phrases, some helpful, some not. Still, we are conditioned to say something, even if it is only 'I am sorry for your loss.' But for an absence, for someone who was never there at all, we are wordless to capture that particular emptiness. For those who deeply want children and are denied them, those missing babies hover like silent, ephemeral shadows over their lives. Who can describe the feel of a tiny hand that is never held?"

                                                                                      ~Laura Bush

Friday, March 11, 2011

Embellished Bayou GIVEAWAY!

Head on over to the Handmade Louisiana blog and check out my interview, CLICK HERE to read it! AND you can enter to win a FREE Personalized Travel Tumbler from my shop!!

Fleur de Lis Personalized Monogrammed Insulated 20 oz Travel Tumbler Cup with Straw, Buy Three, Get ONE FREE

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While you’re there, be sure and check out the other talented Louisiana artists on the team.  There’s something for everyone, from children’s clothing, to pottery and homemade jellies! You can find us on Facebook, Etsy, and the Team Blog.

 

**Don’t forget ~ all the FRAMES and TINS in my Etsy shop are 50% off!! Get these great deals while they last, the sale will end March 31.**

Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Throwback Thursday: Curly Ribbon Wreath

It’s been a year since I posted my DIY Curly Ribbon Wreath tutorial.  With my birthday coming up this weekend, it’s time to bring my wreath out of storage and it got me thinking I should repost the tutorial. 

CLICK HERE for the Curly Ribbon Wreath Tutorial

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Different versions have been seen around blog-land over the past year.  CLICK HERE to see some of them.  It’s so fun to see them all, and I’m so glad it was one that everyone enjoyed! 

Recently, Alice emailed me about the one she created and I love how it turned out!

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Hers was made using an 18” wreath form from a local florist  wrapped with satin ribbon instead of painting it.  She made her own curly ribbon bows by using 22” lengths of 6 different colors and stapling them in the middle then curling them. She made about 45 of them and used floral pins to attach them to the wreath. 

I love the embellishments she used and the way she personalized it.  Great job, Alice, thanks for sharing!

If you have a project you’d like for me to share on this blog, email them to me at christy@embellishedbayou.com

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Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Happy Mardi Gras!

Even though the weather tried to put a damper on our party, we still had a great Mardi Gras weekend.  Saturday the weather was cold and windy in north Louisiana and rainy in south Louisiana.  I think the big Saturday night parades in New Orleans had to be re-scheduled for Sunday. 

But in Louisiana, we don’t let a little rain keep us from celebrating Mardi Gras!  We had a beautiful day Sunday and a good time was had by all at the local Highland parade.  Here are a couple of the floats:

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In honor of Fat Tuesday, I’m reposting the

Mardi Gras History & Fun Facts 

I posted last year.  Enjoy!

  • When is Mardi Gras?  The Mardi Gras season begins on or after the Epiphany (or Twelfth Night)  and ends on the day before Ash Wednesday (Mardi Gras=French for Fat Tuesday) source

  • Why do we celebrate Mardi Gras? Mardi Gras is a period of abandon and merriment that precedes the penance of Lent.  Although originally of pagan content, the traditional carnival celebrations which precede Lent in many cultures have become associated with the season of fasting if only because they are a last opportunity for excess before Lent begins. source

  • When was the first Mardi Gras parade in Louisiana?

    The Mistick Krewe of Comus made its parading debut in a torch-lit procession on the night of Mardi Gras with two floats, costumed maskers and brass bands in 1857.  A group of businessmen and civic leaders invented a king of Carnival, Rex, in 1872. source

  • What’s the deal with the beads and coins?  The throwing of trinkets to the crowds was started in the early 1870s by the Twelfth Night Revelers.  In 1884, Rex started using medallions instead of trinkets. These medallions are represented by today's doubloons. Doubloons are usually aluminum and anodized in many different colors. They depict the parade theme on one side and the Krewe's emblem on the other.  source Other throws may include stuffed animals, small toy/trinkets, and even food like Moon Pies and hot dogs!   Try yelling “Throw me something, Mister!” at the float riders and see what you can catch! As a float is passing, instead of just waiving and glancing quickly from rider to rider, zero in on a single rider. Establish eye contact, flash a big smile and make a lot of noise.  Watch out while trying to pick up throws from the ground, you may get your fingers smashed as it is customary to step on a bead/doubloon on the ground, then bend down and pick it up.

    NEOPlex 3' x 5' Mardi Gras Historical Flag
  • Why all the purple, green and gold?  Rex selected the official Mardi Gras colors in 1872. The 1892 Rex Parade theme Symbolism of Colors gave meaning to the colors: Purple represents justice; green, faith; and gold, power. source

  • Who’s in charge of the parades, and how do I attend one? Krewes, or bands of people, construct their own floats and/or organize themselves to parade during Mardi Gras. The first krewe, formed in 1857, was called the Mystick Krewe of Comus, and the second krewe – the Krewe of Rex – was not established until 1872.  source Most Krewes developed from private social clubs that have restrictive membership policies. Today, in order to obtain a Parade Permit, all Orleans Parish Clubs must sign Affidavits agreeing not to discrimate in terms of membership, but many of the more established Krewes continue to allow membership by "invitation only."  source Krewe members are assessed fees in order to pay for the parade and/or ball. Fees can range from thousands of dollars a year per person for the most elaborate parades to as little as $20 a year for smaller marching clubssource Check the parade schedule for your town to find out when and where the parades are held.  Best of all, they’re FREE!!

  • What is a King Cake?  The king cake of the New Orleans Mardi Gras tradition comes in a number of styles. The most simple, said to be the most traditional, is a ring of twisted bread similar to that used in brioche topped with icing or sugar, usually colored purple, green, and gold. Some varieties have filling inside, the most common being cream cheese followed by praline. Popular bakeries such as Gambino's, Haydel’s, and Randazzo’s, feature original recipes and types of king cakes.  The cakes have a small plastic baby (sometimes said to represent Baby Jesus) inside, and the person who gets the piece of cake with the baby has various privileges and obligations (such as buying the cake for next year's celebration).  source

Mardi Gras Fun Facts

  • The average rider in a parade spends $600 to $800 just on throws, with some high rollers spending $2,500 or more. For a mega-parade like Endymion, with over 2,000 riders, that means upwards of $1.5 million of goodies tossed in a matter of hours.

  • Float parades were banned from the French Quarter’s narrow streets in 1973.

  • More than 500,000 king cakes are sold each year in New Orleans between January 6 and Fat Tuesday, and another 50,000 are shipped out-of-state via overnight courier.

  • The super parades of Endymion and Bacchus, scheduled for the Saturday and Sunday before Fat Tuesday, feature a combined total of 75 floats, 60 marching bands and more than 250 units. Their 2,300 members toss more than 1.5 million cups, 2.5 million doubloons and 200,000 gross of beads.

  • One of the most photographed objects in all of Mardi Gras is the Boeuf Gras float in the Rex parade. Since the Middle Ages, the bouef gras (fatted bull) has been the symbol of the last meat eaten before Lent. While once a live bull was included in the procession, now a huge papier-mache' figure appears.

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You can see all of my Mardi Gras posts HEREHappy Mardi Gras!

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Mardi Gras Decorations

IMG_2819With Mardi Gras day just a week away, I guess it is about time I shared my Mardi Gras decorations! They are pretty similar to last year's, but it’s always fun to look at a little sparkle, right?

The great thing about Mardi Gras d├ęcor is that it transitions so easily from Christmas.  You can use many of the same gold and green sparkly ornaments, wreaths, etc. that were on display for Christmas and just jazz them up for Mardi Gras.  Case in point, my front door wreath:

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This is the same gold glitter wreath I used during Christmas, I simply changed out the bow, and added a garland and some glittered feathers.

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The wreath on our backdoor is my favorite.  IMG_2816I re-vamped it last year and just added a couple more things to it this year, namely some glittered peacock feathers from Hobby Lobby and more gold foil picks.IMG_2817IMG_2818

Inside, another carry-over from Christmas, a purple tinsel tree:

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It’s always fun to shop the after-Christmas clearance sales and pick up decorations that can be used for Mardi Gras, too!  Most of the glittered candles and ornaments were purchased at 50% or 75% off!

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These gold glittered candle holders and basket did double-duty as well:

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I jazzed up the coffee table with a purple candle arrangement mixed with beads and ornaments:

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A great way to “recycle” all those beads caught in the parades is to use them in your own decorations!

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Be sure and check out last year’s posts for more Mardi Gras decorations, wreaths, and craft ideas!

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