Photo Credit: Stephen Torres/EpicuriousOur friends over at Epicurious, in true foodie form, have developed three beautiful Mother's Day-appropriate flower arrangements, each of which uses at least one edible ingredient-including some your mom probably had to force-feed you before you came to your vegetable-loving, grown-up senses. (You have come to your vegetable-loving, grown-up senses by now, haven't you?) We'll walk you through our favorite one here, with photos and instructions from Epicurious.com, and you can click over to the site to check out the rest.
Photo Credit: Stephen Torres/EpicuriousFrom Epicurious:
"MATERIALS: 2 cube glass vases, one large (6") and one small (4"); 1 small square (approximately 4" x 4" x 3\8") of floral clay; 4"-square flower frog; 5 floral stakes; 2 bunches peonies (approximately 10 stems) in two shades of pink; 1 bunch of lilacs; 1 bunch of miniature kale; 2 bunches of thin asparagus; 5 baby artichokes; 2' pink and green ribbon
EQUIPMENT: cutting board; pruning shears; scissors; ruler; awl; chef's knife; double-sided tape"
Photo Credit: Stephen Torres/Epicurious
Blog Posts by Valerie Rains, Shine staff
Make mom a flower arrangement that shows youâ€™ve finally come to appreciate asparagus (if only as a decorative element)By Valerie Rains, Shine staff | Work + Money – Thu, May 8, 2008 10:13 PM EDT
Photo Credit: Stephen Torres/EpicuriousOur friends over at Epicurious, in true foodie form, have developed three beautiful Mother's Day-appropriate flower arrangements, each of which uses at least one edible ingredient-including some your mom probably had to force-feed you before you came to your vegetable-loving, grown-up senses. (You have come to your vegetable-loving, grown-up senses by now, haven't you?) We'll walk you through our favorite one here, with photos and instructions from Epicurious.com, and you can click over to the site to check out the rest.Read More »from Make mom a flower arrangement that shows youâ€™ve finally come to appreciate asparagus (if only as a decorative element)
- Valerie Rains, Shine staff | Work + Money – Thu, May 8, 2008 1:15 AM EDT
The gang at Threadbanger is back with another useful and entertaining video lesson: This time, the topic is revamping flea market (or heirloom) furniture with some basic d.i.y. upholstery. If you haven't tried it yet, you should definitely watch the video, because it is really so, so easy. Like, "if you can use a stapler, you can do it" easy. Watch and learn.Read More »from D.i.y. upholstery video: because some of us are visual learners
More d.i.y. video on Shine:
Make a modern birdhouse out of a gourd
Get your home office clutter under control
Grow your own vegetables-whether or not you have a "real" garden
Photo Credit: Getty ImageThese days, there seems to be an inverse relationship between the size of a gadget and the size of its electrical plug. As phones, handhelds, music players and computers get smaller, the opposite is true of their chargers-or at least they're not shrinking at the same rate. And we all know what that means-the power strip with 6 plugs now can only handle 3 devices, another power strip is added, more tangling ensues. If this sounds all too familiar, you might want to check out 360 Electrical's rotating outlets, featured yesterday on Remodelista. The sockets each turn a full 360 degrees, to help you accommodate even your most annoyingly oversized plugs and chargers, and they're even pretty cheap: $12 a pop. They come in 4 colors-black, white, ivory, and almond-the wiring is not particularly complicated, and the screwless wall plate just snaps into place. Because they also have grounding slots, you can use them for your heavy-duty appliances, too. Of course, it's best to use a smart powerRead More »from Problem Solver of the Day: rotating outlet
- Valerie Rains, Shine staff | Work + Money – Mon, May 5, 2008 8:57 PM EDT
Photo Credit: Getty ImageWhat is it about couches and self-pedicures? Why does it seem like the sofa is a great place to paint your toenails, when it is so clearly not? It's like eating spaghetti on top of an ivory bedspread (which I have done, sadly, more than once)-you know you shouldn't do it, but still, somehow, you ignore the warning signals and go ahead. Sometimes, this results in a disastrous spill. Fortunately, I have a career home ec teacher on my speed dial (let's call her "Mom"), and I knew she'd have some advice, so I gave her a ring. Her advice follows (paraphrased).Read More »from Ask a Home Ec teacher: Help! I spilled nail polish on my couch!
1. Should you have such a spill on your sofa (or bedspread), first determine what kind of material you're dealing with. For most fabrics, you'll want to reach for a bottle of acetone-which you can buy in beauty supply stores or drugstores in the nail polish remover section. It's tougher on the polish than moisturizing, non-acetone removers. You'll want to use the non-acetone remover if you have an accident on a more delicate fabric,
- Valerie Rains, Shine staff | Work + Money – Mon, May 5, 2008 4:14 PM EDT
Photo Credit: Thread and ButterLet me catch you up, if you're not already following along with this renovation. Thread & Butter are two city-girls-gone-country, currently neck-deep in the renovation of a fixer-upper house in Pennsylvania. So far we've seen the dining room come to life, as well as a small bedroom, and we've learned lots about removing wallpaper and stained-glass window stickers in the process. Now, they've unveiled the new version of their upstairs bathroom. Scroll down to see more images, plus what it looked like before.Read More »from Renovation Update: a bathroom before-and-after from Thread & Butter
Photo Credit: Thread and ButterThe "before" bathroom. The steps in between the two included:
*Removing wallpaper from walls and ceiling; sanding, plastering, and repainting
*Uncovering and cleaning up the brick chimney
*Caulking all the wall and floor seams
*Stripping the linoleum floor and painting it with oil-based semi-gloss paint
*Painting the tub and the sink (aren't they gorgeous?)
*Repairing serious rust damage in the sink
*Cleaning and spray-painting the medicine cabinet
*Removing and scrubbing
Peel a potato, become a designer: How to transform plain throw pillows with a vegetable and some paintBy Valerie Rains, Shine staff | Work + Money – Sun, May 4, 2008 6:42 PM EDT
Photographs © 2008 by Jenny Hallengren. Used with permission of Chronicle Books LLC, San FranciscoLotta Jansdotter has been something of a universal design crush in the blog (and print) worlds for years now, and her latest contribution to the field is almost like a public service. In her book, Lotta Prints: How to Print with Anything, from Potatoes to Linoleum, she puts the power of production in our hands, and shows us the completely sophisticated (and expensive-looking) results you can get with the most 7th-grade-arts-and-crafts-class materials. The projects she shows are not the least bit intimidating, requiring no fancy, pricey equipment or specialized skills, and every one of them is something I would pay good money for if I saw it on the shelf at a store. She's even included 8 ready-to-use stencil pages, if you're not so confident about your drawing skills.Read More »from Peel a potato, become a designer: How to transform plain throw pillows with a vegetable and some paint
One of my favorite projects in the book is the potato-printed throw pillow design shown here. Lotta has generously allowed us to reprint the instructions for potato printing here; why not give it a try, and then go pick
- Valerie Rains, Shine staff | Work + Money – Fri, May 2, 2008 10:11 PM EDT
Photo Credit: Shayna/Apartment Therapy SFShayna at Apartment Therapy San Francisco just posted a genius idea for organizing seed packets: put them in an index card file, sort alphabetically by type, and pair with plant tags from the nursery. A small, smart tweak like this can provide a lot of satisfaction, for a lot less effort than, say, cleaning out the garage. Nice going, Shayna! [via Apartment Therapy]Read More »from Love This Idea: stash your seed packets in an index card file
More clever organizing ideas on Shine:
Modular, stick-on bathroom organizers
4 tips for getting rid of clutter the eco-friendly way
A new life for antique library card files
- Valerie Rains, Shine staff | Work + Money – Fri, May 2, 2008 6:31 PM EDT
Photo Credit: Getty ImageWhat I learned from watching this clip:Read More »from Weekend Project: make a birdhouse out of a gourd (video)
1. As The Handy Craftsman Jerry Bennett says, "If you're thinking about making a gourd birdhouse, you should have started thinking about it last year." I beg to differ: If you're willing to relinquish control of the gourd-dying process-and, really, who isn't?-you can buy a pre-dried gourd at a craft supply or florist shop and be good to go the same day.
2. Birds are very particular about the size of hole they're willing to go in. Check the chart at Amishgourds.com to plan yours accordingly.
3. You can make a gourd birdhouse, start to finish, in about ten minutes. And you get to use a drill! Fun.
4. Watching someone build a gourd birdhouse is strangely soothing on a Friday afternoon.
*Also, I did not learn this from the video, but from a previous job: gourds can look really beautiful and modern when painted with a bright, glossy craft enamel. Look to this $74 turquoise version and take pride in making a just-as-nice version for about a tenth
Photo Credit: Getty ImageThere are four major categories of party-throwers: those who plan for weeks and do everything, in intricate detail, by hand; those who say 'screw it all' and hire a caterer, decorator, and bartender; those somewhere in the middle-and then, there are those of us who decide the day before a holiday weekend that we really must throw a party, and now we only have to get all the food and clean the house and decorate and invite everyone and get the first round of cocktails going in, oh, about 23 hours. The good news for those in the final category: you only need one hour* to pull off a pretty decent Cinco de Mayo party. Here's how:Read More »from The One-Hour Party Plan: Cinco de Mayo edition
1. Take smart shortcuts with the menu. Food (and drink) is more or less the foundation for any good event. Quality conversation and fun-loving guests are important, too, but when those fun-loving guests get hungry and cranky, the conversation could turn to less-than-fun-loving topics. One quick trick of efficient entertainers: Pair store-bought items with
- Valerie Rains, Shine staff | Work + Money – Wed, Apr 30, 2008 10:22 PM EDT
Photo Credit: Kaat Pype/Mixd.be via Design for MankindI'm feeling shark jaws. What do you see? (It's actually a printed-wood mirror designed by Kaat Pype. Available for 315 Euros through Mixd.be.) [via Design for Mankind]Read More »from Design Rorschach Test: What does this look like to you?
Photo Credit: RinzeWind/Flickr
Related links on Shine:
Antique mirror inspiration (and a tip for making your own)
A cheap, multi-functional mirror that can even help you get organized
How to clean mirrors (and everything else in your home) with natural substances