Monday, January 28

Crafts/DIY: Spray Painted Wrapping Paper

I know this is a post too late. It slipped through the cracks. I just remembered it because I've been attending a lot of birthday parties lately, and DIY gift wrappers are so in.

Last Christmas, I made some. We had a ton of spray paint in our house, and I figured I can use it to make wrapping papers by using stencils and thick kraft paper.

I wrapped the box first, because I wanted the effect to be perfectly placed as so. I made a Christmas tree stencil, and spray painted it with fluorescent pink. I topped it off with a gold seal embossed with our monogram.

Here are other spray painted wrapping paper for your inspiration.

[top] Oh, hello friend DIY - Polka dot paper
[middle] Eddie Ross - Lace paper
[bottom] Crafted - Camera Print paper
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Thursday, January 24

Crafts/DIY: Valentine's Day Bottle

Valentine's Day is just around the corner. Instead of using envelopes to tuck your love letters in, why don't you upcycle a glass bottle and use that?

It so happens that I have lots of Starbucks Frappuccino glass bottles lying around. Yes, I was once addicted to their contents. I kept the bottles because they're glass and I love the size. And you know me, I don't throw away cute stuff even if they're just containers.

So I cleaned one up. I used Goo Gone for the sticky substance left by the clear sticker, like the way I did here. I created a template using the Love Park in Philadelphia as inspiration. I used pink card stock for the Love Park template. My life would have been easier using an electronic cutter, but yes, I manually cut it myself. Haha. Then I tied it up using pink/white twine from Divine Twine and an apple green paper clip.

Want the template? Here is the link.

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Tuesday, January 22

Food: Vanilla Cupcake Bakery

There's a new cupcake shop in town. Probably not that new anymore since there are multiple branches popping up around the metro. It's called Vanilla Cupcake Bakery.

I first heard about this shop from my sister last year. She got a few because she thought their packaging was cute. So I first tasted their cupcakes without seeing the actual store. I had a chance to visit the TriNoma branch sometime last year -- probably around Halloween, I forget. At first glance, this cupcake shop looked like a grown-up scale girl doll house. It's Cath Kidston meets retro diner.

But I'll talk about the interiors later. Food first. Haha. Here are their cupcake and cookie lists.

Look at the yummy goodness. They even used decorating tips as part of their display.

I got the Vanilla Chocolate cupcake. Pretty good I must say. :-)

They serve each table a carafe of water. I use carafes in our home too instead of the usual glass pitcher. They are awesome if you have little space in your fridge and on your table.

They also have cute little cupcake candles like this on their tables.

Chairs make a space. In the tiny space that Vanilla Cupcake Bakery occupies, it made use of Ghost chairs with chair pads that reminded me of Dorothy.

Soft armed chairs with the same fabric and white piping, and pops of color from the Daphne chairs.

Yes, the Daphnes are originals.

The space is surrounded by a white picket fence. Very cute, but probably the best part of it all for me is the refrigerator. It's a Smeg!

Here are some dainty displays...

... their buffet table --

-- where they displayed cake stands and shakers.

They even have adorable cupcake packaging so you can get some yummies to go.

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Monday, January 21

Stationery Love: The Met's Ionic Correspondence Cards

Let's start the week with another stationery love.

One of my personal favorites is this set of correspondence cards from the Metropolitan Museum of Art. This was given to me by my dear sister-in-law. It features a gold-embossed Ionic column, the design of which was adapted from the actual marble Ionic column part inside the museum. The capital and shaft was once part of the Temple of Artemis in Sardis.

It's very simple but very elegant. It comes in a blue sturdy box, which contains 25 cards and envelopes. Each correspondence card has the gold-embossed ionic column on top of fine white stock.

You know, I always feel short-changed about stationery sets with only 10 pieces in them. It makes me hesitant to use them. Haha. I think 25 is the perfect number.

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Wednesday, January 16

Love: Goo Gone

One of my pet peeves is the sticky substance left behind by price tags. I got a couple of white ceramic animals from West Elm way back, and while I was cleaning our bedroom, I saw the dirty, sticky goo on the animal. I tried baby oil at first, but there was still some residue left. Then, I decided to try Goo Gone, because a lot of moms swear by it. It worked! I am hooked.

I tried it once more on this big wooden 'A' I have. Because I got it on sale at Target before, the tag left this sticky mess on it. It seemed like all of Target's red tags (sale or clearance tags) have really sticky backing. Haha. I just noticed. I put Goo Gone on the cotton ball, and then apply that on the sticky goo. Goo Gone still worked its magic.

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Tuesday, January 15

Crafts/DIY: Bill Pad

Last Christmas, Daddy E gave cash to his inaanaks (godchildren). He had an awesome idea of giving cash bound together in a book.

The idea was to have this cash pad and just tear them off when needed. How did he do it?

[1] Exchange bills at your bank. Get new, crisp ones of the same denomination. Usually during the holidays, banks are ready to distribute these in fresh, sequential order.

[2] Fifty is the perfect number of sheets in one pad. But you can use more.

[3] Cut card stock (I used kraft folder ones -- they were only P2.00 per folder. That's about 5 cents in USD) that's the same size of your bills. For each pad you'll need two pieces -- one for the front, one for the back.

[4] Stack them together neatly and use those big black binder clips to hold them in place while you apply rubber cement.

[5] Now, thinly apply rubber cement at one edge. Wait for it to dry, then apply another coat.

[6] Finish it off by adhering fabric tape at the edge to make it look pretty.

This is what the fabric tape looks like.

It was such a hit that my mom and mom-in-law had some made too. Haha.

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Monday, January 14

Shopping: Target x Prabal Gurung Collab

Target just doesn't stop! Missoni, Neiman Marcus and now, Prabal Gurung.

People are anticipating a Missoni-for-Target-type of demand. I am pretty sure you have heard of the clamor and excitement about the Missoni and Neiman Marcus collaboration recently. People flocked Target stores just to get their hands on the items. As expected, they sold out very quickly.

On the same day of the launch, eBay already had loads of these things listed, and they had been highly marked up because the items were not in stock anymore.

Just what is in store for you in the Prabal Gurung x Target collection? Vibrant colors in fun, flirty cuts ... accessories like shoes, jewelry and handbags.

Here are my top picks. Take a look.

Copyright Target. Source LuckyMag.

The Prabal Gurung collection at Target will launch February 10, 2013.
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Friday, January 11

Love: Raise the Bar with Fresh Fragrance Bar

Whenever I go inside a department store, I make it a point to avoid the perfume area, because pesky salespeople shoving those perfume-scented papers in your face annoy me so much. Then I heard about Fresh Fragrance Bar. They are not your ordinary perfume store you see. What separates them from the others? Read on and you'll see.

They sell the real thing. They promise reasonable prices compared to department stores, and they only sell the real stuff! I say this because in all the bazaars I've gone to during the holiday season, there is always at least one stall that sell fragrance knock-offs. If you don't know your perfumes, you'd think they are authentic. But they're not. They almost smell the same, but who knows what's inside them?

They have multiple payment options. If you don't have a credit card, or if you don't have enough cash now, no worries, because Fresh Fragrance Bar offers flexible payment schemes, perpetual promotions and loyalty programs for their customers. Too good to be true? It gets better.

They believe that finding the right scent for you takes time. It's not a hurried process. Fresh Fragrance Bar's frangrance consultants will help you experiment and find the perfume that works best for you, and they won't push you just so they can make a sale. I wish all stores have this outlook.

It took time for me to find perfumes that I love. Right now, I have three go-to perfumes --  Dolce & Gabbana's Light Blue, Lanvin's Eclat d'Arpege and Donna Karan's Cashmere Mist. But I am always on the lookout for new scents, especially now that my Lanvin supply is low. I can't wait to go and try out Fresh Fragrance Bar for myself.

Fresh Fragrance Bar positions themselves as the perfume store for perfume addicts. I think they are more than that. I think they are the perfume store for every one looking for that perfect scent.

Fresh Fragrance Bar have shops in 5 locations -- Eastwood Mall, Alabang Town Center, Lucky Chinatown Mall, Abreeza Mall and Marquee Mall.

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Love: Sample Room and Kerastase Oleo Relax

I'm sure by now you've heard about Sample Room. It's an online website where you can order samples for free. You just pay for shipping.

The first product I ordered from Sample Room was the Kerastase Oleo-Relax Fluide. I've been a fan of Kerastase Oleo-Relax because of my frizzy wavy hair, but I don't usually buy because it's very expensive. I've tried their shampoo and conditioner before, and I had a very good experience. This time, Sample Room was offering samples of Kerastase Oleo-Relax Fluide.

Ordering was an easy breezy process -- probably the easiest one I've encountered next to Amazon. I kid you not.

The package was delivered via courier, which is the service of choice in the Philippines. The postal service here sucks, but I don't want to rant about that now.

The package came in a postal stock packaging, Inside was a brown paper bag with the Sample Room  logo. The kraft paper used was thick, probably around 100 gsm or so.

It was sealed on the back flap with their pink sticker.

The sample was even bubble wrapped. They charge about P100 for shipping (I feel it's a bit overpriced because it should only be P50), and I think it's not that bad considering that they took their time wrapping it nicely and securely.

Now for the product itself. I was surprised that the sample they were offering was 50ml of this good stuff! Galing for P100 diba? It was really worth it, size palang.

The Kerastase Oleo-Relax line is for dry, unruly, and frizzy hair. I have all those albeit not extremely bad. The technology behind this product is Nutri-Huille + Anti-Frizz, which reduces frizz and adds softness, shine and reduces volume.

So now, let's put it to the test. This is me with towel-dried hair, ready to use the Kerastase Oleo-Relax Fluide.

I applied 2 pumps on my hair, and I blow dried it quickly.

This is my hair before. Major frizz to the nth power. Eek.

This is it after. See? This product really works for me. So, thank you Sample Room for having this sample for me to try. My hair is less frizzy, softer and shinier.

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Baby: Interactive Floor Projection

Once upon a time, I took lots of iPhone photos and they just stayed there inside my phone. I didn't sync the phone with my laptop at all (haha, major katamaran). Then I got a new phone for Christmas and I was forced to sync my old one so I can have the settings on my new phone. And there they were -- the cute photos of Allie when she just turned one. It seemed so long ago since she looked so tiny here. Now she's running all over the place. She's turning 2 on March.

Here is a series of photos that are so adorable. It was taken at Lenox Mall in Atlanta. Allie went nuts over this interactive floor. She could have stayed all afternoon playing here.

Soccer time.

"Look mom, I'm trying to dive!"

Hmm, wouldn't it be so funny if your living room floor is this huge interactive projector, and your baby has this outfit on him? Mommy's little helper! Heehee. Cute.

Image from msn now

*My note to you: No offense meant to anyone. I just found this photo adorable.
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Tuesday, January 8

Food: Wild for Wildflour Cafe + Bakery

Last week, I wrote about this little tea heaven down at 4th and 26th in Bonifacio Global City. Right next to it is this cafe/bakery called Wildflour.

I took my cousin there and treated her for dinner. It was one of my Christmas gifts to her. The other one was a Jamie Oliver's cookbook. She's a chef, I'm a foodie. We went together. Go figure.

The place is very casual. The details remind me of a cottage home. There's the kitchen stripe on the table napkin, some wooden board to plate the bread and white dish for the butter, glass bottle for water, and a white bus-roll-inspired menu.

The ceiling made use of wood slats with some pendant glass lights. There's also a white brick wall displaying some art works.

Here's my cousin. I hope she doesn't kill me for posting this. :p

We had some baked escargot (yup, snails) and roasted bone marrow for appetizers.

The baked escargot came in little white baking cups, covered in puff pastry.

It was smothered with garlic butter, but I couldn't taste the garlic.

Now the roasted bone marrow is a whole different story. It came with ciabatta and mango salsa.

It was to die for. So yummy.

For the main course, I had the braised beef short ribs. It was so tender and very flavorful.

My cousin had their steak with kimchi rice. I tasted it, and it was really yummy too. I'll probably order this next time.

But the best part was dessert. We shared a serving of Tres Leches. It was so good, I could have finished one myself.

Simot to the last drop! Haha.

Our dinner was probably about P3,000 give or take. It was well worth it.

Wildflour Cafe + Bakery
G/F Net Lima Building
4th Avenue corner 26th Street
Fort Bonifacio, Taguig 
(02) 856-7600

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