Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Back that card up

I'm kind of in love with this invitation, even though I didn't have too much to do with it. Julie and I had a clear vision of what we wanted for her mehndi invitations. She wanted a separate invite from her wedding invitation suite since it would only be going out to a few people.  But when I went to India, I asked three different invitation vendors to design them for us, but they all said it wasn't cost effective to "just make 100 invitations."  So I had to admit defeat.  Enter Sara from Carry the News. With just one internet search and a few clicks of the mouse, I found exactly what we were looking for. And you know what?  It looked even better than what we imagined.  Love when that happens.  

{designed by Carry the News}
Here is the invitation.  Me love you long time. 

I hoard coupons to Staples like I hoard ribbon.  So, keep an eye out on their website because they offer 20% off your entire print order fairly often.  And I've always found the customer service to be way better than Kinko's.  

I searched high and low for the right color yellow cardstock to print these bad boys on.  Julie was pretty specific about the color she wanted, so I was excited when I found it.  But, apparently not all cover weight paper is created equal.  When I got the cardstock in, it was way to flimsy for an invitation.  So, with Julie's permission, we backed them with red cardstock. I would show you a picture of that, but honestly, it looks like a red rectangle.  Kind of anti-climactic since I find the title of my post to be rather clever, so my apologies. 

I am on a mission to round every corner that enters my craft room, so we rounded all the corners.

And since my motto has always been "more is more," I contacted Sara again and asked her to make some custom labels for us.  Just keepin' it classy, folks.  And, of course, she sent us back some more fabulousness.

So we printed them, ran them thru the second greatest invention ever made, and had the most awesome custom labels ever for our envelopes. 

Aren't they gorgeous???  Cutest mehndi invitations ever.  I think I'll marry them. 

And it wouldn't be a true pintobean blog post without the gratuitous shot of the stack of finished envelopes. Sigh.  And best of all?  Julie loves them. 

Sara was awesome to work with, so if you ever get a chance, or need something amazing for your event, please contact her.  I am already thinking of what event I can have to use her other designs.

That's all I got for now.  Lately, I've been trying to figure out how to stop time Bewitched style but haven't had much luck.  But, I have tons to update you on.  Just been way to busy to stop and blog about the roses.  Oh, and I missed my February obsessions this month, so I'll make sure March is up soon! 

Friday, February 10, 2012

Neon Crafternoon

One of my favorite scenes from the movie Bridesmaids is when Kristen Wiig opens up a package, which happens to be the invitation to her best friend's bridal shower.  And the butterfly flies out and keeps getting in her face.  Makes me laugh just typing it.

When it came down to picking a color palette for my friend Julie's bridal shower, I wanted something vibrant without using any color palettes she is already using for her wedding events.  Neon seemed to be the answer. I have been totally obsessed with this neon trend that I've seen lately.  It's everywhere.  

I had a hard time figuring out what to do for invitations after I picked the color palette, though.  Aside from having crafter's block and making about 4 different versions of the invite, I got a little cocky while ordering supplies and didn't feel it necessary to order plenty of extra supplies for mistakes.  Not sure why my confidence suddenly took over because I make plenty of mistakes, but it did and I had to go with Plan B.  Then USPS didn't seem to love my ideas either.  They delivered one of my packages of supplies to Pennsylvania.  No where near where I actually live.  So that left me with Plan C, which turned into Plan D once I realized I was really short on time and Plan C wasn't going to happen.  But, sometimes Plan D turns into Plan Delightful and you can't complain.

This was the final product.  I had another design going, but by accident I dragged the shape and ended up getting this long line.  I thought, 'hey, that looks like fringe!' So I went with crazy with it.  And then I remembered these amazing invites and I knew I was on to something.  Even though the neon colors on my computer didn't translate to colors that printed, I think the invite looks vibrant.  I backed the invite with neon pink paper, but forgot to take a pic of that.  

I made separate hotel cards since most of the people invited are from out of town.  Since I couldn't find or order neon yellow baby envelopes, I made them myself out of neon yellow cardstock.  The pink flag is a high visibility label from Office Depot that I cut down to the size and shape I wanted. These may or may not resemble the labels that may or may not be missing from our office supply cabinet at work.   


For the envelopes, I decided to get fancy and do some calligraphy.  Here is where I got cocky.  I didn't think I'd make enough mistakes to warrant purchasing another set of envelopes - they came in sets of 50 - so Plan B came into play when I realized that I am not as perfect as I thought I could be.  A huge blow to the ego, but I'm a survivor.  I'm not going to give up.  I'm not going to stop.  I'm going to craft harder.  Sorry.  Had to do it.  

I used Dr. Ph Martin's Bombay White India Ink as opposed to Dr. Ph Martin's Bleed-Proof White - what my old calligraphy instructor suggested - because that was all I could find at my art supply store and I'll just say - for other calligraphers out there - I didn't love it.  Buy the Bleed-Proof.  

I printed the mailing address with a white pen on more of the high visibility labels.  Obsessed.  I use these for everything at work, so it makes me happy to see them used on something like a bridal shower invitation.  

Here is the entire ensemble together.

I am a big believer that all envelopes should be lined.  So as much as it hurts me to cut pretty paper, I made sure to find some awesome paper to line the envelopes.  

And just because nothing makes me happier than seeing a stack of envelopes, here they are all ready to be mailed.

I was never happier to finish these particular invites since it was Murphy's Law from beginning to end.  But, I would have never finished them without Mandy.  She came to my rescue and helped me assemble everything and didn't say a word when I asked her to help me line 42 envelopes. Thanks, Mandy.  You're wild!!!!!!  Inside joke.  Just ignore me.  And thanks for listening to my crazy brainstorming sessions and not hitting ignore when you saw me calling you, Seester and Sarah. There are very few people in this world that will sit and talk envelope liners for an hour and you ladies are two of them.
 Julie and I are neck deep in stuff we have to finish for the wedding, but I can't say I don't love every minute of it.  I'll have another post for you soon.  Love it. Love it. Love it. 

Oh, and if you haven't already guessed it from the title, I've been singing this song in my head for the last two weeks or so. 

Tuesday, February 7, 2012



Ha. Saw this today and had to share. Totally feeling this way lately.  Via 365 Sharpies.

Monday, February 6, 2012

Material Girl

We are living in a material world, my friends.  So when I was making out my lists of "must buys" for my India trip, material was at the top of the list.  I've bought some beautiful silks before, but I was looking for textiles with patterns.  Unfortunately, while I was in Surat - the textile capital of India - I did not get a chance to visit the factory there, but it is definitely on my list the next time I go to Gujarat.  However, just walking into a sari matching store is a treat for the eyes.

Most people don't know that when you buy a sari in India, that there is quite a bit of legwork involved.  First, you buy the sari.  The fabric for the blouse is usually attached to the sari so the store will cut the blouse off for you and keep the sari to add the "fall."  The fall is a length of fabric that usually matches the sari in color that is sewn onto the bottom inside edge of a sari.  It adds weight to the sari to help the sari fall well once it is draped around you.  When you buy saris here in the states, they usually have this already stitched on them.  In India, they typically do not.

So, you have to get the fabric for your blouse cut from the sari - which may take a few minutes or you may have to wait for a couple of days to pick up.  Next, you take your blouse to a sari matching store, like store pictured here.  This is for the lining for your blouse.  The man above was actually getting something matched when I snapped the pic. 

You may also purchase a ready made petticoat here (the third step) at the sari matching store, or you can buy the fabric for your petticoat here to have one stitched.  Pictured above are all the ready made petticoats that this store was selling.  A petticoat is a long flared draw-string skirt that is worn under your sari to give it shape and to act as a slip for thinner saris.  The sari is tucked into this petticoat at the waist and the remainder of the sari is draped and pleated around you and then over your shoulder. 

The fourth step is dropping off your blouse, the lining and or the petticoat fabric to a tailor to have a blouse stitched.  It may take up to 2 weeks to get your blouse back, depending on how busy your tailor is and how accurately it was made.  Often times you have to go back several times to get it to fit just right, but typically if it's just a blouse, the adjustments are minor and don't take as long.

The final step is going back to the store to pick up your sari with the fall stitched in. So basically, it is not just like walking into Nordstrom and picking out a dress.  However, the process is fun for me because I get to stare at all these lovely fabrics and colors.


Look how amazing these fabrics and colors are!  This was a vendor that had a small stall in a market. I've seen some of these fabrics here selling for up to $25 a yard.  There?  About $4-5 dollars. 

I got some gold blouses stitched for my friends at the stall above.  Just his little store had 5 different gold fabrics to choose from.  I kind of died and went to heaven.  Yes, my friends, I am definitely a material girl....

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Lost in E-notion

I've always said that India is like Vegas.  Every time you go, it's a different experience.  My most recent trip was all about shopping.  For three weeks.  Dream.Come.True.  It was Mr. Bean's dream come true, too.  Three weeks of shopping with someone else's money.  It was a win-win. 

Ever since I met my friend Julie's life back in 2003, I demanded offered to go to India with her to shop for her wedding.  Because of that, if it had been up to me, I would have married her off a long time ago just so that I could have done this trip a lot sooner.  But, it was definitely worth the wait.  Having been to India before, I was somewhat prepared with what to expect.  If you've ever shopped in India, you know that it is also a roller coaster of emotions.  You leave here thinking you know exactly what you want but once you get there, you are flooded with options and opinions. Or you can't find what you want. Or you find something so amazing, you forget what you wanted in the first place. Or you just simply run out of time.  But, if you know me, you know that I love a good roller coaster.  Well, actually I don't.  I scream my head off on the real ones. Let's pretend my roller coaster statement makes sense and I'll move on.

The worst part about India, for me, is that I could spend my life savings there and never think twice about it.  But that's also the best part.

The moment I stumbled upon this gem - a stall filled with trims and notions for sari's - I wept a little.  It was so beautiful to see. This is definitely one of the top 10 craft wonders of the world. 

Each one of those spools is 9 meters of trim.  Those shelves are about a foot deep, too.  Do you see my dilemma here?  Having my craft room look like this store? Or saving for a rainy day and all that crap?  I don't know.  Too hard to decide.

This is also where I curse airlines and their 50 lb per luggage rule.  And now most airlines are only allowing one check-in.  The torture!!!  I could have bought that entire stall and still went looking for more. 

The colors and patterns were amazing.  I would just sit and stare and imagine all these lovelies in my craft room.  This guy clearly did not share my enthusiasm. 

Now, my friends, I've got to confess something.  And I'm not proud of it.  But I've made my bed and now I must lie in it.  The thing is, seeing all these trims and notions actually overwhelmed me to the point of not buying much.  Seriously.  If you've been in my situation before you know exactly what I mean.  My biggest issue was that the majority of the shops I stopped at were wholesalers, so I had to buy in bulk or 9 meter increments.  I knew I didn't have much room in my luggage to actually bring everything I wanted back.  And since I couldn't buy in small quantities or in one or two meter increments, I just left it there.  And now looking at these pictures I can pick out at least 10 that I should have told myself I can't live without.  I hope I can still maintain my street cred as a craft hoarder.

So, I had a bunch of other pics to post for you today, but I somehow deleted them.  So, I'll leave you hanging on the edge of your seats - humor me here - and I'll post some more pics on Monday.  Until then, I've got a long weekend ahead of me!  By the way, the title of this post is a play off this song.  That was one of my jams back in the day. Awwww yeah.....