Brittany + Anthony

My brand new sister in law Brittany is one of the most joyful people you will ever meet. She is beautiful, bright and always bubbling with enthusiasm for something. She’s an artist with a bold and whimsical sense of style. Her creativity, distinctive taste and fun-loving spirit made for an absolutely dreamy wedding this past June.  I’m so happy I was able to lend a hand with the invitations.

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The ever so talented Brittany came up with the concept herself.  The watercolor background was her (genius) idea. The hand drawn illustration was created by the bride

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Brittany wanted to incorporate polka dots – a prominent motif at the wedding – into the invitation design. I came up with the idea of including a sheet of translucent vellum with hot pink polka dots to separate and protect the invitation from the photo. We also included polka dots on the custom mailing label.

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I wish so much you could reach out and touch this paper –  luxurious, uncoated, heavy weight card stock. The texture was perfect for the watercolor effect.

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The invitation suite included a 5 x 7 invitation, vellum sheet, photo, two insert cards and a wraparound mailing label.  To me these invitations perfectly represent this fun, happy couple and the great party that was their wedding day.

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Plus – as a bridesmaid I got to wear a hot pink dress – and all of my dreams as a child in the 90’s came true. 

Vintage Style Baby Shower Invitations

Last year I was asked by  my friend Linda to design an invitation for a baby shower. The party honored our beautiful friend Chelsea who rocked pregnancy so hard you’d think she was faking it.  I was excited to hear that  the party’s theme was hot air balloons and pink ombre.  So original and cool.  I’m really over the typical baby shower cliches of cutesy baby animals, diaper pins, binkies and those horrible plastic babies

creepy plastic babies party favorsThis really needs to stop.

Linda made this one really easy for me – she already had a really strong idea of what she wanted. She has amazing taste and it was great working with her. I love how the invitations turned out.

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A few weeks after finishing these I was hired to create another baby shower invitation – this time for a boy. My client loved the style of Chelsea’s hot air balloon invite so I came up with a design with the same look and feel.  Instead of a hot air balloon I used an adorable vintage airplane illustration. I added the air mail border and post-mark style emblem for the RSVP to tie the theme together.

vintage style baby shower invite for a boy with airplane

UPDATE! These invitations are now available in my Etsy shop! Visit http://www.etsy.com/shop/rightandwest to order your very own invitations.

Ruby eats her greens

As I get to know Ruby better I’m discovering more of her weird quirks.  She barks at strange smells, goes nuts if you blow on her face and LOVES vegetables.

Pugs are notorious for being obese fat lards and I am determined to shield Ruby from this fate. I know that if she gets a taste for delicious, fatty, people food her stubborn butt will refuse to  eat anything else so, if I do give her food from my plate it’s always fruits or vegetables. My thinking was after she found out what spinach tastes like she would decide it wasn’t worth the effort and learn to stop begging, but I was wrong. Whenever I give her a carrot, or a piece of lettuce or pineapple she always comes back for more.

I did some research online and found out the leafy greens, carrots and pineapple actually have a lot health benefits for dogs.  I just hope she never finds out how delicious hamburgers are. 

One day I gave Ruby a taste of my green smoothie and she loved it. Now she looks forward to getting her own delicious little morsel every morning.

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Now this wouldn’t be a real blog without a green smoothie recipe right? So here’s mine.

Don’t be fooled, just because a dog will eat it doesn’t mean it’s gross, I promise.  I truly believe that changing the way you eat changes the way you feel, but that doesn’t mean it’s always easy to eat your veggies. Like kale. I really hate the stuff, but it’s strongly anti-inflammatory which is great for a sad little asthmatic like me. I’ve been experimenting with green smoothie recipes for a while, and this is the one I’m sticking with.

*Please keep in mind this is a human food recipe. When I share it with Ruby she only gets a few tablespoons, basically whatever is left in the blender after I’ve poured it into my cup. I understand too much sugar and fruit can be bad for dogs, so unless you like a sick puppy and diarrhea all over your house, please serve in moderation.*

1 cup Dole brand Orange Peach Mango juice

1 cup fresh pineapple

1/2 banana

1 handful spinach

1 handful kale

3 or 4 ice cubes

Blend it all together until smooth. Pick out your favorite vintage Karl Malone collector cup.

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Wait, your husband doesn’t collect vintage Karl Malone Big Gulp cups?

And enjoy while still cold…because if it gets warm you can kind start tasting the kale.

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Danica & Nathan Forever

Even though I promised I would make Danica’s wedding invitations years before a lucky man named Nathan came her way, I was honored and excited when she asked me to create the invitations for her most special day.

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Danica chose Navy and light pink for her colors. She wanted something elegant and simple – befitting of the classy reception she had planned. Because lace would be an element used throughout the wedding reception I chose a delicate but modern graphic of lace. Danica picked Navy as one of her color’s because her husband is an Army ROTC graduate and would be wearing his dress blues to the wedding.  I love the way the deep  navy balances out the lace and keeps it from becoming too silly and girly.  How appropriate that the postage bares an American flag and George Washington.

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The Invites arrived in a beautiful navy blue envelope with a fancy, custom designed address label. Wrapped around the invite was a semi-transparent band of vellum. Everything was held in place by a beautiful navy organza ribbon.  The invitations were printed on a thick, natural white card stock.

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navy blue lace wedding invitation

Thank you Danica! Your wedding was beautiful as you are. Thanks for letting me be a part of it.

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Corn Chip

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When Ruby wakes up in the morning she smells like corn chips. Her feet mostly. The scent lingers for a few hours and then mostly subsides. I don’t mind the smell, but it’s curious don’t you think?

why do pugs smell like fritos?

Fritos! That’s it!

So I looked it up on my phone last night.  A Google search proves that not only am I not the only person to have observed this phenomenon, but enough people have asked the internet that it shows up in the predictive search options.

Does anyone else have a dog that smells like Fritos?

Bachelorette Party

Last time I mentioned the bachelorette party I hosted for my friend last weekend – now it’s time for show and tell. While I can’t show or tell many details from that actual night, because of their embarrassing and or adult content,  here are a few things I can safely share.

For the color scheme I wanted something that was girly and wild with a little class to balance out all the trash. I chose hot pink and gold and loved the way it turned out. I fell in love with a package of super cute hot pink envelopes at target and let this be my inspiration for the invitations.

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I went with a bold typographic layout. I made the bride-to-be’s name the focal point because this night was going to be all about her. So there would be no mistaking this party for your typical bridal shower, and so that no guests would show up with a Pyrex dish for a gift, I included the Bachelorette’s bra and panties sizes on a tag secured to the invite with gold baker’s twine.  The hunky image in the background was another subtle hint of the graphic nature of the party.

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I created some cool custom mailing labels for the envelopes. The fun twist is that the label wraps around to the back of the envelope where I placed the return address.

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The final, and totally adorable detail I added was the stamps – and they happened by accident.  When I got to the post office to mail the invites the wait was forever long. Not wanting to subject myself to such a long line without Splash Mountain  at the end I decided to see if the automated post office vending machine could help me. I found out that you can indeed by forever stamps from the machine, but instead of your standard stamp they have several of these funny little versions you can pick from.  The heart was bold and cute and the little highlight of pink was a fun bonus.

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For decorations I dressed up these cute dollar store vases with a coat of Krylon Premium 18ct Gold Plate spray paint. I picked up a few bouquets of flowers from the grocery store for five dollars each  and divided them up between three vases. Pretty, easy, and inexpensive.

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The last piece of decor I created for the party were these sweet tissue paper garlands – and yes this is the best photo I have of them. I got my camera out with the intention of photographing my creation but things quickly deteriorated into an impromptu Ruby photo shoot. This is literally the only image from that day with the garland in it – so if you’d like a more clear illustration and instructions, I basically followed  this Martha Stewart tutorial. 

The party was a blast! Fun, crazy, and of course wonderfully awkward at times.

This is the Place

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I’m back from Utah. Ruby was a great travel companion. Whenever she rides in the car  it’s like she can’t stop herself from falling asleep.  I thought this only applied on short trips to the park or Petco, but not so. So she slept the six hours from Vegas to Utah Right there on the seat next to me just being precious the whole time. We made a pit stop at the halfway point where I took this great picture of Ruby looking like a hoodrat.

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I had a blast in Utah though I was reminded of the three reasons that may keep me from ever moving back there: January, February, March.  Utah is a really beautiful place but during those three months the things that make it beautiful are either dead or hiding under dirty snow. Of course I don’t really care because the one reason Utah will always be home is the people there that I love and adore. And that love will always outweigh dirty air and lifeless trees. And I got to spend lots of time with many of those lovely people during my stay.

The main reason for my trip was a Bachelorette Party and Bridal shower for my incredible friend Danica.  I helped host the Bachelorette party and I will be sharing the invitations and decor I designed for it  next time…and that’s all I will be sharing from that night. With anyone. Ever.

On Sunday my siblings and I threw a surprise 30th anniversary get-together for our parents. It was crazy putting it all together since we only had one day to do it, but that was half the fun.

Other things I loved about my trip include Ruby meeting her pug-cousins, Jojo and Ollie, staying up late with my sister, trying Taco Amigo for my first time ever and best/worst of all – enlisting the help of my mother to create an “adult” themed cake.

I call a lot of places home but Utah has my whole heart. The image at the top is a print I made to hang on my wall when to help me remember this.  If you’d like your own 8.5 x 11 print click the following link to download it for free.

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Ruby Tuesday

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Well hello there.

This is Ruby. Ruby Soho. Mike and I brought her home a week ago and she is stealing our hearts. I will admit it took time for me to warm up to the idea of a pug. Their flat faces and “crazy eyes” are features that admittedly aren’t those of the classically handsome, but there is something so endearing about that little face. If you’ve never known a pug you might not understand the appeal, and I understand.

Pugs are full of personality – like hilarious-human-trapped-inside-a-dog-body personality. Ruby is no exception but so I don’t completely overwhelm/annoy my followers on various social media outlets with pictures and stories about my dog I’ve decided to dedicate one post a week on my blog to all things Ruby. Naturally I picked Tuesday.

I mentioned “crazy eyes.” Little Ruby’s eyes are especially crazy – she always sleeps with one of them open. It’s rather unsettling so Mike and I will place our hand over it and try to close it for her (the same way they do on dead bodies in the movies) but within seconds it rolls open again. Very creepy.

Tomorrow Ruby and I are taking a road trip to Utah – I’ll let you know how that turns out.

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On the Way

Mike had work in Reno this week. He said it would be a long drive so I offered to go with him to entertain him and split up driving duty.

You wouldn’t believe how long it takes to get to Reno from here. However long you are imagining the drive might be, go ahead and add a few more hours to that. Nevada is a tall state and we basically drove the length of it in a day.

As long as the drive was (eight hours) and as monotonous as the scenery was (sage brush and brothels) I loved this little trip. I loved it because it reminded me I love the west. I love living in a place where there is room to run around, or room to run in a straight line for a really long time. I love living in a place with spaces yet to be defined and stories still to be written.

I love the idea of taking something and making it your own.

The prospect of taming/claiming what’s wild.

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