Archive for the 'creating' Category

A delightfully spooky time!

My husband and I threw a small Halloween costume dinner party for about 10 friends at our apartment this weekend!  It was so much fun, I only wish our apartment was bigger so we could have had a larger guest list!  I thought I would share our decor for this holiday.  I haven’t ever been a big Halloween-decorator in the past (at all), but this year I really wanted to do it up right, and have some friends over to give me a reason to do so!

For the courtyard, we didn’t have the time to do much, plus there are rumors that it’s going to be re-landscaped soon, so since we don’t know when exactly that is happening, we didn’t want to hang stuff from the trees, just to have the landscapers show up and tear it all down.  So we kept it simple and cut some faces into black paper bags, and lined the walkway with luminaries!  They turned out even cuter than I imagined.  In the stairwell leading up to our apartment, we put some of Martha Stewart’s mouse silhouettes (not pictured) and put candles around and christmas lights behind our pumpkins and gourds.

Derek and I dressed up as Mickey and Minnie Mouse this year, and we are super happy with how our costumes turned out!  My skirt was the first thing I’ve made on my own from a sewing pattern, so I’m pretty proud of how it turned out!  We made the ears, Derek’s bow tie, and I painted my shoes yellow.

Our guests lined up at our banquet table (which took rearranging our entire living room, and disassembling our office area…resulting in our bedroom being an absolute catastrophe!)

Ollie, our handsome mascot, no matter the season.

The following day, I took some more photos of our decorations, as I simply didn’t have time to get all the photos I wanted of the party setup before guests arrived.  The “tree” held favors (tricks and treats) for our guests, in halloween cones.  We draped all of our furniture in white cloth to give it a ghostly effect, and we covered some of our artwork with tin foil and drew in creepy eyes.  The bat garland was from West Elm (I’m obsessed with it), and the black cat portrait is from Heather Mattoon’s series “Cats in Clothes”.  Something that I didn’t get to photograph that I am bummed I missed was my brain-shaped ice for the punch!  Ahh, well, another year.  I also missed out on photographing all of our guests in their costumes, unfortunately.

Derek made the ghost following a craft tutorial from Martha Stewart’s October issue of Living.  She will definitely be re-used in future years, and perhaps she will eventually have a ghost family to hang with.  I re-created our center pieces on our regular dining table (which held the appetizers and beverages during the party), since I didn’t get to adequately capture them during the event.  The “pumpkin” bouquet is from Trader Joe’s.

 

We had so much fun, hopefully we can make this an annual event of sorts!  Happy Halloween!

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The dream

Those of you who know me, know that I am obsessed with collecting glass bottles, jars, etc.  And many of you may have seen the recent Martha Stewart Living magazine that has some CRAZY images of a colored bottle collection…well, I am officially going to start REALLY collecting colored glass.  My collection has been so casual, but these images (see below) are just sooooo inspiring and breathtaking, I can’t help but put my love for color and glass into an actual collection.  So for those of you who are just ITCHING to get me presents (haha), you know what to get me.  ;)

(All images from here, by this talented photographer.)

Off to my anniversary weekend escape with my lovely husband!

Life in Los Angeles

It has been almost a month since Derek and I moved south to Los Angeles from San Francisco.  While it was really sad to leave, we had so many supportive friends who were encouraging us to follow the direction we felt our lives were taking us, so we left feeling loved and excited for the new adventure ahead.  Putting our new home together has been quite a process, and we aren’t finished yet still!  I’d say we’re about 75% there, but still have a little ways to go…

So I am posting some photos of the place before (taken when we first viewed the apartment), and I have a few shots of it since we moved in, but keep in mind that when these were taken, half of what we own was still in boxes.  :)  Enjoy…

dining room

bathroom

living room

(notice the wall color.  we painted since this…it’s nice, we just felt like it didn’t make the place feel bright and open.)

living room

kitchen

kitchen

Now here are the photos after we moved in (but taken about a month ago…)

view from kitchen through dining room into living room

(notice my yellow school chairs I got for FREE off craigslist!  and we painted our table light minty green!)

The dining room (from the living room doorway) through to the kitchen.

Our lovely kitchen…

The entrance to our courtyard

The courtyard (the landlord said he is going to do more with the landscaping…excited to see what happens with that)

The view of the courtyard from our balcony.

I will post more photos of our house soon.  I have a few more shelves to hang, which I am hoping is going to happen this weekend.   The little stuff that doesn’t have a place yet is starting to drive me completely crazy.  I’m trying to get it all done before next weekend when the fam comes into town (fam-in-law)!  :)  Then the following weekend, we are off to Savannah, GA for my beautiful little sister’s college graduation!  So proud of her.

I have tons of other stuff to post, but we really need to hook up internet at our apartment.  Hahah…we are living in the year 1995 over here…eek.

Until next time…

XO

Photographic Inspiration

I am beginning to plan out a new photoshoot with a some friends!  It’s been wayyyy too long, and I need to begin being more intentional about shooting on a regular basis for my portfolio.  Here are some images that I find inspiring from a few local photographers (Ericka McConnell, Stephanie Rausser, and Thayer Gowdy).  The date is set for March 28th and all parties are PUMPED.  Here are the beautiful photos by the lovely ladies mentioned above…

By Ericka McConnell:

By Stephanie Rausser:

By Thayer Gowdy:

The moment you’ve all been waiting for…

Photos of our engagement and wedding!  We got engaged on June 11th, 2009, and got married on August 8th, 2009!  Yes, that’s only 2 months of planning…but somehow, our wedding could not have been more perfect, even if we had had a year to plan!

Derek lured me into a photobooth to take some fun photos, little did I know, that he had already taken pictures with proposal notes!  When he handed me the photobooth strips for safe keeping, he had slipped the proposal in there.  When I looked at it I just about fainted.  First of all, I had never told him that before I ever even met him I used to say that a photobooth proposal would be the BEST way to get engaged!  And second of all, how stinking romantic.  I mean, my goodness. Does he know me, or what?!  Truly a dream come true.  After much screaming and crying (all happy), I said “YES!!!”

Quickly thereafter the engagement, we scheduled an engagement photo session with Vasna Wilson.  A friend and incredible photographer, who we were lucky enough to have photograph our wedding also.

Our ceremony and reception was held at Radonich Ranch in Los Gatos, California.  Under the tall, beautiful trees, on a perfect August afternoon, we were married with 70 of our closest friends and family present.  It really was magical.

We were married by our friend Mark Scandrette, who conducted a beautiful and creative ceremony.  Our closest friends were our attendants.  (My little sister, and maid of honor, Janelle Gates, handmade my headpiece for me.)

Details!  From the top left:  1. Our guestbook, which was also made by hand by my sister, was filled with photobooth strips from our engagement and the wedding. 2. Jars filled with flowers and candles were hung from the trees by ribbon.  These jars were all recycled and collected for the 2 months prior to the wedding.  3. Flags made by my mom, Jennifer Gates, from her plethora of beautiful quilting fabrics.  4. These were packets I made that were the escort cards, and a favor; filled with California poppy seeds.  5. A friend of ours, the fabulous Anna Bond, designed our invitations, and gave me the flexibility to hand screen print them myself, which allowed me to use the screens for other purposes as well, such as for our programs!  I am obsessed with her work…I find myself lucky to know the lovely lady!  6. My beautiful bouquet, which I assembled myself, from the flowers that our wonderful wedding coordinator, Marky Carr, got for us.

WE’RE MARRIED!!!  Vasna got some amazing photos of the two of us together, rejoicing that the day had finally come for us to be husband & wife, partners for life.

The photobooth.  This was one of the best things about our wedding.  We rented a photobooth from Classic Photobooth Rentals to make up our guestbook, and double as a fun take-away gift for our guests.  The result was an INCREDIBLE guestbook, and some insane photos of people having a great time in it.  We also had an old typewriter for people to type their notes to us with, and photo corners to adhere the scraps of paper and photobooth strips to the book.  We thought this detail to be only fitting of us, considering our engagement (not to mention my obsession with photobooths)!

My beautiful friend, Amy Ross, made our cupcakes for us:  Lavender cupcakes with lavender cream cheese icing.  Yummm!  I made the toppers out of styrofoam letters from Michael’s, which I painted to match our decor.  My dad assembled the AMAZING tiered tree cake stand for us.  I have it in my home now as decor!  I love it.  Derek and I chose to serve our cupcakes together, since we didn’t really have anything to “cut” (seems kind of silly to cut a cupcake).

Our first dance was to the song “You and I” by Ingrid Michaelson.  I would suggest listening to it if you haven’t heard it before…super sweet.  :)  Since I LOVE dessert, we had a SECOND dessert during dancing:  ICE CREAM CONES!  Woo!  We served Balsamic Strawberry ice cream from Bi-Rite Creamery, out of San Francisco.  Marky (our wedding coordinator)’s husband was kind enough to make us that nifty serving box thing for them.  Soooo cool, right?

I hope you love our wedding.  It is still so magical for me to even think about.  It was truly a PERFECT day.  Thanks to everyone who helped out!!!

xo

m


Visit my website to see my current work: www.melodyhansen.com

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He may have had 3 ice creams, some 
gummy bears, & chocolates all between the hours of 4:30 and 5:30pm, but hey, 🤷🏻‍♀️. It was the #museumoficecream for goodness sake! Such a fun afternoon! 🍦🍧🍭 #wildercobalt I’m so sad I missed this beautiful beach adventure @_derekhansen & #wildercobalt had this morning! Looks like my kiddo is busting some serious moves on this sand dune! 🕺🏼 Love you, my wild boy!
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📷: @_derekhansen Wilder was pretty sad to take down the Halloween decorations, so I pulled out some of my paper scraps from @urbanic and threw together a little Thanksgiving craft to hopefully start to get him excited for the next round of holidays! 🦃🎄🎅🏻 Of course I ended up doing 90% it it myself, but...🤷🏻‍♀️
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#wildercobalt #thanksgivingcrafts Started the day/night as a robot 🤖...ended it as a dragon 🐉. Super glad we put a solid 2 days of work into the robot costume, and I went to Target last night at 10:00 for the dragon as backup (#becausetoddlers). 🤷🏻‍♀️😂🙈 Wilder had a blast trick or treating, despite the fact he is battling a nasty cold. #wildercobalt #halloween2017 This little firecracker is everything x infinity + 1. I’m more thankful for him than I can express, & more blessed by him than he will ever know. #wildercobalt Last night was the first evening I've gotten to see our Halloween window after dark. That rose gold spider web is even more magical and glittery at night! So proud of our handiwork on this one! ✨🕸 We got our copy today, and Wilder, Dina and I read 1/2 of it before naptime! So so beautiful -- mind blowing work of art, @casey_fritz! ✨ Today Wilder and I had a major @disneyland / @californiaadventurepark adventure. We got there before the park opened, and stayed until almost 7pm (super long day for us, since we are pass holders)! The parks weren't even packed, we waited no longer than 15 min for anything, and did as much as we could pack in. At the end of the day, Wilder still didn't want to leave, so I promised another visit soon. Taking a kid this young can be a challenge, but to me it's the most magical age so far and it just gets better every time. He loves it, and plays hard, excited around every little turn. We had the most fun today, I feel so happy. We said goodnight to each other with a huge, super tight hug and big kiss. My sweet boy. 🎈✨ #wildercobalt #californiaadventure #disneyland Getting to spend the week with my family was so lovely, despite that pesky hurricane canceling all of our plans. The quality time we got together was precious. •
PLUS...happy birthday sweet Jude! You are 3! 🎈🎈🎈
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#judeemerson #wildercobalt ☔️S P L A S H💦 #irmageddon #wildercobalt