Monthly Archives: October 2009

Back in the bay area…for the last time this year

I’m on the final leg of my fall recruiting trips, back in the bay area until Friday.  Luckily, my hotel is right next to Union Square so the first thing I did upon checking in was change and hit the shops. 

Since this is the last time this year I’ll be up in the bay area, I figured I might as well make the most of the shopping opportunities here.  At Anthropologie, I watched the employees in the middle of creating their winter store displays – using plastic cups, straws, chicken wire, cotton balls, cash register tape…how the heck do they come up with such whimiscal displays using the most random items??

I also bought a pair of grey boots, which I’ve been searching forever for, and long-sleeved shirts (which I have plans to embellish with some flower pins that I’ll make in the future). 

My last trip of the year!  Bay area, I love you, but after  5 trips in 2 months, I’m ready for a break.

Take a peek at my house – living room

Although we moved into our new place about 5 months ago, we waited a while to have a housewarming because of some pretty major renovation work after we bought our place.  Some work we did include opening walls, replacing all windows with energy efficient ones, expanding master bedroom closet, completely gutting and redoing a bathroom, adding a sliding door in the kitchen, painting the entire interior and exterior of the house.  We’ll hopefully be done once our new driveway and walkway are complete (which should be this weekend).  I wish I took some before and afer pics to document the transformation that took place.

Here are some pictures of our living room.  We added plantation shutters, mounted a flastscreen above the fireplace, and installed some nice mirrors above a buffet table.  We scored huge deals on our furniture through buying stuff at the Z Gallerie Outlet and at Crate & Barrel’s floor sample sale.  Woo hoo!

Here’s our buffet (Z Gallerie Outlet ) and 2 mirrors (Crate & Barrel floor sample sale).  I think the vase &  flowers were the only item we paid full price for.
This was my wedding rehearsal bouquet, with ribbon flowers made from instructions found at Martha Stewart Weddings. 
Couple of pics of the flatscreen tv (craigslist), white couch (Z Gallerie Outlet), bamboo & vase (vase had a crack so we got it for 40% off!).  Though you can’t see this too well, the moss green floor rug from Crate & Barrel was also from their floor sample sale.
I’m having trouble figuring out how to decorate the bedrooms.  That’s my next home project!

That’s Sew LA!

So after my skirt-to-apron attempt, I realized that the sewing skills from my 7th grade home ec class aren’t up to par anymore and it’s time to take a sewing class.  I found a really cute one in Silver Lake called Sew LA which isn’t too far from my place (well, without hideous LA traffic, that is).

Sew LA offers classes for students of various levels, including private lessons, but they also have a great selection of really cute fabric, plus supplies and books.  I’m gonna have to check this place out soon!  They actually have a class on making vintage aprons…

Wedding Day @ the Cravens Estate

Our wedding day was truly magical.  During our rehearsal the evening before, the weather was cold, misty, and gloomy, and I was freaked out that our predominantly outdoor wedding would have an unexpected guest in the form of rain.  The next morning, I woke up to more gray skies and all throughout the time my bridesmaids and I were getting ready, I anxiously watched the weather forecast, crossing my fingers and hoping for the best.

The morning and early afternoon continued to be overcast, which was actually great for pictures since it diffused the lighting.  Half an hour before the ceremony began, sunshine broke out from among the clouds.  The rest of the day was splendid indeed…not too hot, not too cold.  Phew!!

Without further ado, some pictures…

Our venue, the Cravens Estate, is the home of the San Gabriel American Red Cross.  They have a beautiful old building in Pasadena that they also rent out for filming and special events.


The house, inspired by a french chateau, has many beautiful areas for pictures.  What sold me when I first saw the venue was the beautiful wrought-iron staircase in the middle of the house.

The backyard had a lovely grassy lawn with trees that was also a great setting for pictures.
The ceremony was held at the front of the house, in front of the main entrance. 

Reception was held in the backyard, facing the back of the house. 


It was a fun-filled, stress-free day (surprisingly!), and our awesome photographer, Paul Lee, did a fantastic job capturing so many wonderful memories for us.  It’s hard to believe almost 6 months have passed since then!

LA Sample Sale – Rock Scissor Paper!

Rock Scissor Paper Studio sells a variety of cute, modern stationery with vintage flair to stores like Anthropolgie, Urban Outfitters, Forever 21, and smaller boutiques.  Fortunately, they’re located in Los Angeles, and even better, their sample sale taking place this Sunday in the San Fernando valley is close to my house!

I’ve seen a lot of their merchandise in the stores above, and always forced myself from not buying too much of it since I already have a ton of stationery at home that I find too cute to use. 

Take advantage of this offer, LA denizens!!!

Details: Semi-DIY skirt to apron project

Okay, so here’s what ya’ll been waiting for…my instructions for converting a skirt into an apron!
This is my first tutorial, so please bear with me if some instructions are totally obvious. 
Step 1:  find an old skirt, knee length or a couple of inches shorter, to start with.  Mine was a cute retro-inspired one from Red Dress Shoppe that’s a bit too pink and floral for my tastes now.
Step 2: Take your skirt and lay frontside down, and cut out the back of the skirt.  I left about 4 inches on each side (sorry no picture of this!).  Set this piece aside, as it’ll be used later!
Step 3:  Take about 1/2″ on the left and right edge, pin, and iron down.
Step 4:  With a sewing machine, sew the hems on each side of the skirt, then remove the pins.  I just used a basic running (?) stitch with white thread. 
Step 5: Take the piece of fabric you cut from the back of the skirt, and cut two 4″ strips from each piece.  Fold in half wrongside out, pin, and iron.  Sew around bottom and side edges, then turn inside out.  These are going to be the apron ties.
Step 6: Pin the apron tie to the inside of the top edge of the apron skirt and sew.  I made two parallel running stitches to make sure that the tie was securely attached to the apron skirt.  Repeat on other side of the apron.
inside of apron

what it looks like from the front (sorry my stitches suck)

That’s it!  Now, try on your apron and see how it looks!

What’s sad is that as simple as this project was, it still took me several days to finish since I’d only work on it an hour or so every few days.  And as you saw, my sewing skills are pretty depressing.  Hopefully I’ll get the hang of it soon and start creating Etsy-quality items soon!