Saturday, January 10, 2015

Josie Maran's Liquid Metal

These Watercolor eyeshadows from Josie Maran are gorgeous, hands down... but are they worth the splurge?  Absolutely, but it's not an I-must-have-every-shade product. They are very pigmented and long-lasting. You have to work very fast because they do set quickly - I definitely recommend doing one eye at a time. I also suggest using a primer like UD Primer Potion or NARS Eyeshadow Base (my favorites) to avoid  possible creasing.

Sunday, January 4, 2015

Simple, Semi-Homemade Wedding Favors

One of my friends had a basket of flip-flops at her wedding several years ago, an amazing idea which I locked it away in my memory for when it was my turn to walk down the aisle - given at that time I had just met the man I was going to later call my husband days before. :)

I knew I didn't want trinkets people felt obligated to take but would immediately through out at their next gas station stop. I didn't want to repackage candies. (No offense to anyone who has done this, because I have definitely enjoyed noshing on wedding favors before leaving for the night!) I wanted the favors to be affordable and functional; if they were able to be used time-and-time again afterwards and occasionally cause them to think "damn! that was a fun wedding", then it's a homerun! I love the idea of offering guests an alternative to those uncomfortable-but-are-so-cute-you-have-to-wear-them heels, it's a win-win for everyone - the women stay up on the dance floor longer and the men don't have to hear the complaints!

I picked up 65 pairs of flip-flops from Old Navy, enough for every female guest and a few extras in navy blue and silver (our wedding colors). I got a range of sizes from size 5 to size 11, with the most being 7's, 8's, and 9's. Yes, the inner math nerd in me had calculated a distribution table... and the penny-pincher me even waited until I could get an additional 20% off of that normal $2.50 "sale" price! Even though we had some left over, it was an equal distribution across all sizes so I would definitely recommend this distribution of sizes that I went with. I was even able to return all of the unused pairs!

I removed the ugly store tags and added on some homemade tags; all you need is some colored paper, a printer, and some circle punches (I used a 1" and a 1 1/4" from Stampin Up!), and ribbon. I used two large baskets to hold them and made a simple sign to let people know to grab a pair.

We didn't completely neglect the men and children. We had custom matchbooks and cigars near the outside bar. I designed a little sign (see below) to ask our guest to abide by our venue's request to have smoking away from the building; I couldn't resist sneaking the Baltimore Orioles bird into our reception. And we set up a 'kid's room' (since our wedding was in a historic manor, there were various smaller rooms off the ballroom), that we had a TV and Wii set up for them to play in between dancing.

I really enjoyed adding a bit of DIY element to our wedding and think it helped tie it all together. And in all honesty, I found crafting to be somewhat cathartic - a way to distract myself from stressing about other things. Just remember, don't over commit yourself to DIY projects. While yes, you could probably do it all yourself... it's important to know when to ask for help, pay for a professional, or take a little help from the store. The little touches really help personalize the event, but no one would know those things are missing except you if you don't end up getting to it. Happy crafting!


Thursday, January 1, 2015

Top Bronzers

1.  Honey Bronze Bronzing Powder - I tried this based on rave reviews from Essie Button (one of my favorite beauty bloggers); it is a very light, smooth powder with no-fail application; the downside is that there aren't many shades and I use 03 (the darkest is 04), so anyone with skin much darker than mine probably won't find a match.
2.  Bronzed and Poreless - I'm not so sure about the "poreless" part, it's so finely-milled that it just applies beautifully and helps camouflage imperfections; is cooler toned so I like using this as an all-over bronzer and then build it up .
3.  Filmstar Bronze & Glow - This definitely isn't a MUST HAVE but it sure is the epitome of luxury! I like wearing this with Tarte blush in Exposed for a very natural look for the cheeks whenever I where a bold lip.
4.  CC+ Radiance Ombre Bronzer - the size of this compact doesn't make it very travel-friendly, but this is a more affordable luminating bronzer; I find this one to be the most red-toned out of these 4, so I the sheen is more subtle than the Bronze & Glow.