Archive of ‘How-to’ category

DIY Bunny Ears via Wylie West Creative

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INCREDIBLE idea for simple bunny ears created Rebecca Simms of Wylie West Creative. I’ve been collaborating with this talented bunny on a project I can’t wait to share with you all soon. Check out her style and design portfolio and other fun DIY projects.

bunnyearmster

WWC

 

Who doesn’t want a little sparkle on Easter Sunday?

xo, Lydia

How To: Host a Sip & See

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Baby Food Jar Vases

photo by Beth Liebetrau

 

Friends! We hinted at it last week with our baby food jar bud vases but the big new is that wrote an article about hosting a Sip & See party for PaulaDeen.com! We are just thrilled to be talking Southern traditions on the same site as the Queen of Southern cooking. Check the story here and please leave us a comments (so Paula knows you stopped by).

Have you been to a Sip & See? Have you ever hosted one? We want all the details.

 

xo,

Lydia & Sarah

 

 

 

 

How To: Paint Dipped Baby Food Jar Vases

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I paint dipped some baby food jars for a article we wrote about How to Host a Sip & See Party and am now obsessed with the technique. Baby food jars make darling bud vases for any baby related celebration. Dipped in a thick layer of latex paint they look elegant and sophisticated, like grown up vases. Below is a step by step “How To” tutorial should anyone want to try this at home.

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 Use a strong cleaner to get the labels and glue off the jars. Wash and dry well.

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 Place your chosen color of latex paint in a shallow disposable container.

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 Dip the base of the clean jar in the paint and start swirling it around.

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 I like them to look a little uneven so I made some sides higher, you can easily go for a uniform look.

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 Place the jars upside down on a paper towel and allow to dry for 24-36 hours (this much paint takes awhile to dry.)

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 The finished product! I love the drips and imperfections.

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 Repeat with any other colors. For the mint green I added some water to the paint to get more coverage on the jars. A little water goes a long way so be careful to add a teaspoon at a time.

photo by Beth Liebetrau

Once totally dry, fill the jars with water and a few simple blooms.

photo by Beth Liebetrau

Simple white flowers looked fresh in the mint and gold jars.

Photo by Beth Liebetrau

I can’t get over how pretty they look all lined up (credit goes to Beth Liebetrau for the excellent pictures.)

photo by Beth Liebetrau

The only problem with latex paint is it will come off if washed in warm water so be very careful not to get the outsides of the jars wet! I learned that lesson the hard way…

 

xo,

Lydia

 

How to Roast and Peel Peppers

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Ready for broiling

Roasting peppers seems easy.  Until you have half the skin stuck to your fingers like wet paper and the other half still on the pepper, stubbornly refusing to separate.  If you’re dealing with that specific frustration, you may have forgotten one important step.

Broiled pasilla peppers

Let’s start at the beginning. To get a good char, you can do one of two things.  You can place your peppers on a baking sheet lined with foil, drizzle them with olive oil and place them under the broiler, turning once until brown on all sides. Takes about 15 minutes.  You can also drizzle with olive oil and turn directly over a gas flame until all sides are blackened and your peppers look like they do above. However you choose to roast, you’re now ready for the special step.

It comes down to foil.  Place your hot, charred peppers in a bowl and cover tightly with foil.  If you broiled your peppers, use the same foil that you used to line your baking sheet. Cover tightly and let steam until the peppers cool, at least 30 minutes.

Steaming creates little pockets of air between the burnt skin and pepper flesh.  No need to tug or tear to separate skin from sweet, soft pepper.

All you have to do is rip the skin and your peppers will peel easily.  I warn you- it’s as addictive as peeling easy-to-peel nail polish.

I’m stuffing these spicy pasilla peppers with grilled corn and pepper jack cheese and serving them with roasted salsa and sour cream.  I’ll slice any leftovers for spicing up avocado toast. How will you eat yours?

xx Sarah

Pretty Planters

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Terracotta pots? Boring. Something fresh and pretty like this vintage bathtub planter?  Gorgeous but pricy.

Which is a good thing because filling that tub basically constitutes begging the gods to strike my garden down.  I haven’t the hubris to think I could keep that much greenery alive.  Not with these brown thumbs.

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Maybe terracotta pots spray painted matte black?  No numbers for me, just a row of clean black mugs topped with frothy green vegetation.

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Or some color-dipped cheapies?  In pink!  Or maybe turquoise?

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Or galvanized tubs in different shapes and sizes?  An easy, inexpensive English look.

Each image leads to the DIY.  Thanks to all the ladies responsible for breaking me out of my terracotta rut.  Which would you do?

xx Sarah

 

How To: Bloody Mary Bar

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Bloody Mary Bar

I’m planning a wedding shower in a few weeks for a bride that loves Bloody Mary’s. The other hostesses and I want this Bloody Mary Bar to be unforgettable. This is what we did last year for Anjali’s shower

 

Bloody Mary Mix

Starting with a great Tomato Mix is very important, I want to try this recipe for Roasted Tomato Juice from my fav chef Suzanne Goin (The Hungry Cat Bloody Mary.)

 

Bloody Mary Bar

Once you have your base of Vodka and Tomato Mix then you need an array of garnishes. Lemon, limes, hot sauces, crunchy celery and a mix of artisan pickled vegetables.

 

Bloody Mary

 

Guests mix their own custom cocktails to get the shower started on the right note. Any other tips or ideas to spice up our Bloody Mary Bar? (pun intended)

 

xo,

Lydia

Wooden Spoon Rainbow

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Colored Serving Spoon Handles

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Wouldn’t this be a great gift? Dip some pretty wooden serving spoons into non-toxic colored paint. Maybe a whole set for friend’s wedding shower or just a pair for Mom on Mother’s Day. The ultimate in chic hostess gifts if you ask me.

 

Pastel Painted Wooden Spoons

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xo,
Lydia

How To Color Easter Eggs with Homemade Vegetable Dye

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Are you dying eggs this year?  Skip the Paas and make your own veggies dyes.  The colors are so soft and dreamy and there is something magical about making stains the old-fashioned way.  How-to found here.

How To: Antipasti Platter

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How to arrange a FAB antipasti platter in 3 easy-ish steps…

AntiPasti Platter

Step One: Go to the store and buy good quality Parmesan cheese, fresh mozzarella balls, assorted charcuterie (I like salami and prosciutto),small tomatoes, marinated vegetables, fresh basil and marinated olives. Oh and a good loaf of bread and some crackers or flat bread.

Step Two: Make these secret weapon slow roasted tomatoes. Slice the mozzarella and sprinkle with salt. Crumble the Parmesan into big chunks.

Step Three: Arrange all the ingredients on a big platter in sections, garnish with fresh basil and serve with sliced bread and crackers,

 

I could just eat this for dinner actually.

xo,
Lydia

 

How To Bake a Potato

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A nasty little stomach bug knocked me down this past week and now that I’m up and eating again, the only food I can stomach is a crispy baked potato.  I top it with a blend of olive oil and greek yogurt then sprinkle with sea salt, pepper and lots of chives.  It’s my come-back-to-life meal.

Steakhouse Baked Potato

Makes 1

1 russet potato

1 teaspoon olive oil

salt, to taste

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.

Scrub the potato under cold running water to remove any dirt.  Pierce several times with a fork or knife. Drizzle with olive oil and lightly salt all over.  This extra step guarantees a crispy skin.

When your oven reaches temperature, place your potato directly on the rack. No foil needed! Bake until the skin is crispy and the insides soft and fluffy, about 1 hour 25 minutes.  Top as desire.

If you love a baked potato, check out this great party idea.

Tell me, what’s your favorite get better food?

xx Sarah

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