FLOWER HAIR CLIP // A DIY GUIDE

 

Today's do it yourself project is simple and lovely! I love flowers in just about any capacity and because I work in the wedding industry I am grateful to be surrounded by them on almost a weekly basis! I love these flower hair clips that Rhiannon Bosse made. Not only are the really beautiful but they are very easy to make. Rhi provided the detailed instructions which you will find at the end of this post!

You will need a combination of medium sized blooms like spray roses, some hearty bits like mini succulents, and daintier pieces like the blossoms off of a hyacinth. A couple sprigs of eucalyptus works well for the foliage part because the leaves are very flat and durable, holding up well to the floral glue and metal hair comb.

You’ll also want the following items:

• Oasis floral glue
• floral clippers
• metal hair combs
• spare cardboard

The floral glue will need to dry out to get just the right texture. When the edges start to ‘bubble’ a little (as in the edges of the pool of glue you push out from the tube onto your cardboard!) so it’s tacky enough to ensure your flower pieces will adhere perfectly to whichever surface you’ve selected.

You will need to be patient with all of the parts and pieces so make sure you set aside enough time to finish what you start! You will want to create a base for the florals to adhere to. In this case the flat eucalyptus leaves were perfect. Rhi adhered three leaves to the front part of the metal combs, fanning them out from left to right. A little glue goes a long way! And the floral glue is sticky! So one thing you could also consider doing is making these with faux flowers and using a hot glue gun to attach everything should the Oasis glue be a bit too daunting.

One your base of greens is secure you can start adding on the floral elements. You’ll want to trim the stems of the blooms as short as you can so the bloom can sit as flush to the comb as possible. Dipping the cut stem into the tacky floral glue, ensuring it’s covered, and then placing it in the desired spot, be sure to hold it down for about 30 seconds to a minute. The goal is to make sure the glue dries enough to hold the piece in place even if it’s not completely dry. Handle with care and place each to the side to dry further. If it’s floppy or not sticking, the glue may not be ready or the piece you selected could be too large.

Once your focal pieces are on the combs you can begin to add in the accent bits and pieces. These little hyacinth blooms were perfect and had such a beautiful fragrant scent. Just a little glue on the end of where you plan to adhere it from is all you need. Rhi started with the bigger pieces as she built the comb and then added in the smaller pieces to help give her a better idea of how much real estate she had to work with; the combs are little so your fingers have to work carefully. 

I hope you have fun trying this project! 

 

BANANA BREAD // A BAKING RECIPE

 

I love bananas and even more than that, banana bread. My great-grandmother and I used to spend hours and hours at our little cottage in Northern Michigan baking when I visited in the summertime. We would make all sorts of things and to this day I believe that's where my love for baking came from. I am so grateful for those memories.

I'm excited about this post because it brings my love for baking and photography together. Thankfully Rhiannon Bosse also loves to bake so this was a really fun project! She made the bread and styled everything beautifully. The best part? Eating it when we were done! Enjoy these photos capturing the process and save the recipe at the end of this post. 

Banana Bread //

1 cup overly ripe mashed bananas
1 1/2 cups enriched all purpose flour
1 cup of granulated sugar

2 eggs at room temperature
1/2 cup of whole sour cream
1 stick of butter at room temperature
1 tsp baking soda

1/2 cup of toasted pecans (or walnuts)
1 handful of toasted nuts (optional)
6 oz of chopped bittersweet chocolate
a dash of salt
a dash of vanilla

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Grease a standard sized loaf pan really well with butter or baking spray and set aside. In a small bowl mash together about 3 to 4 overly ripe bananas to get a cups worth of mashed bananas. In a separate medium sized bowl combine your butter, sugar, and vanilla with a hand mixer until creamy about 3 to 5 minutes. Beat in your eggs one at a time, stopping to scrape the sides of the bowl as you go and ensuring the mixture is combined.

Add in the flour and baking soda and mix until combined. Fold in the sour cream, toasted nuts and chopped chocolate by hand making sure not to overly mix everything together. Pour the batter into the greased loaf pan and top with the handful of toasted nuts. Bake in the preheated oven for an hour, give or take ten extra minutes or until the very middle of the loaf is cooked all the way through. The top of the loaf will get very toasty and brown before the middle is cooked so don’t fear you’re burning the top. Let the loaf cool in the pan before wiggling it out. Enjoy immediately or wrap tightly and enjoy it within a few days for maximum freshness.

 

HECT // A FAMILY SESSION

 

The weather in Michigan has been so back and forth recently but I'm so glad when I met up with this sweet little family we had the most lovely evening for taking pictures. Tifani is a talented photographer and she recently photographed our family photos too! We actually have a lot in common beyond being photographers. Our husbands are both pastors and we both have little girls born in 2015, fairly close in age! Needless to say, this was such a fun family to photograph and I can appreciate the season of life they are in now as it is so similar to my own. I hope you enjoy a handful of my favorite images from their session. Happy Tuesday! 

 

HOMEMADE BATH BOMBS // A DIY GUIDE

 

Of the many projects I've done with Rhiannon Bosse, this is one of my favorites! These make great gifts for just about any occasion because I don't think it's a secret that sometimes, it's just nice to feel pampered! This is the perfect way to end any day when you're in need of a little pick me up or a bit of relaxation. I hope you enjoy seeing the process and make sure to save the recipe and step by step instructions at the end of this post. Also, just in case you're wondering, they do smell just as lovely as they look! 

HOMEMADE BATH BOMBS

1/2 cup baking soda
1/4 cup cornstarch
1/4 cup citric acid
1/4 cup Epsom salts

1 1/4 teaspoon essential oils (we used a a floral scent)
1 1/4 teaspoon of melted coconut oil
1 teaspoon of water
1 - 4 drops of food coloring
a handful of dried rose petals

You will want to mix your wet ingredients separate from your dry. When you're ready to mix and fill your mold, combine the two quickly because the mixture will 'dry' fast and keeping the ball shape can be tricky. When you pour in your wet ingredients you'll also want to pour really slowly so that the citric acid doesn't fizz too much and compromise the mixture. You'll know the texture is perfect when you can grab a fist full of the mixture and it's not too wet or soggy but still has a bit of a dryness and some of the epsom salts flake off a little.

If the mixture feels TOO dry chances are it's just right!

For the molds, Rhi found these on Amazon and they worked perfectly. You fill up both sides of the mold with your mixture (overflow the cups just a little), then you'll push the two halves together tightly to create a ball, then lightly release both sides to reveal your bath bomb. Rhi gently brushed away the 'ring' left behind where the two halves came together but you could keep that if you like the look better.

Gently set them aside to so they can dry and set for about 24 to 48 hours. If the mixture doesn't hold well enough it could be too dry. If the bath bombs aren't drying and feel too slimy (from the oil) you may have added too much liquid. This is a very easy project but it might take a little troubleshooting. 

A couple of things to consider.

• You can use whatever scent and color you'd like. A very SMALL amount of food coloring goes a very long way. For the pink color you see in the photos here we used about 3 drops of red food coloring. For the dried rose petals in the top of the bath bombs, Rhi just filled up the bottom of the mold with the desired amount and then filled the rest up with the bath bomb mixture.

• The citric acid is what makes the bath bombs 'fizz' when they hit the water. You can make bath bombs without the citric acid but honestly, the 'fizz' is part of the experience so that's why we used it in this recipe. You can get citric acid here.

• About one to two weeks was an appropriate shelf life for the bath bombs. They don't necessarily go bad (the only thing really perishable in them is the coconut oil) but the fizz will be best if you use them soon after making them.

• For the packaging, Rhi used simple Kraft boxes on Etsy and then had Alex of Prairie Letter Shop write sweet messages on the tops. Then, a silk ribbon was fastened into a bow around each box and voila! A perfectly home made gift for anyone! 

You can view Rhi's post on the bath bombs here

 

EASTER BASKET INSPIRATION

 

Easter is just around the corner so Rhi and I came together to showcase some darling baby products in boy and girl themed Easter baskets! All of the content in the baskets are from The Baby Cubby, an online hub for all of your baby needs! Not only are these items adorable however some also play a practical purpose too. This doubles as a gift for you and your sweet little one! We hope this inspires you to think of a few things to put in an Easter basket this year that isn't just candy... although, a little chocolate never hurt anyone, right? 

All of the products featured above (minus the baskets which were purchased at Target) were sponsored by The Baby Cubby. The items chosen for this post and words expressed are of my own choosing. 

Little Women & Alice in Wonderland

Pig Stuffed Animal

Rose Blankets

Hedgehog Backpack

Turkish Towel

 

WEDDING INSPIRATION // A STYLED SHOOT

 

I am very excited to see this beautiful styled shoot featured over on the Smitten Blog today! Cassie from White Dress Events came together with Century Club Ballroom to create a romantic, winter setting to inspire couples to think outside of the summer months when planning their wedding. Have a lovely weekend everyone!

 

LACHLAN RUE // FIRST BIRTHDAY

 

I am so excited to see Lachlan's first birthday party featured on 100 Layer Cakelet today! He is one special little dude and it was such a fun afternoon celebrating his first birthday! Rhi is one of my dearest friends and we were fortunate to have our babies just shy of 8 weeks apart. Emery and Lachlan are great friends and they have a lot of fun together! Rhi had so much fun designing this party for Lachlan and you can read more about all of the fun details you see in her post here

If you are interested in having a birthday party or event photographed please contact me HERE

Photography // Samantha James Photography

Venue // The Grand Rapids Downtown Market 

Planning & Design // Rhiannon Bosse

Stationery // Smitten On Paper

Calligraphy // Prairie Letter Shop

Catering // Tacos El Cunado

Cake Pops & Cookies // The Cakabakery

Cakes // D&W Fresh Market

Linens // Special Occasions

Dino Tattoos // Shop Sweet Lulu

Mini Dinosaurs & Craft Supplies // Amazon

Dinosaur Hats // DIY

Mini Instagram Prints // Social Print Studio

Cake Stands & Wood Bowls // Target

 

MICHIGAN WINTER // HOLLAND BEACH

 

Visiting the beach in the winter is such a cool experience! We went with my friend and her son who are staying with us right now. While it was extremely cold and windy we had the opportunity to walk around on all of the ice and take some photos. The waves were huge and wild, crashing up against the mounds of ice and snow. If you haven't done this and you live around here, I highly recommend you do this at least once. Just remember to bundle up!