Book Club: The Count of Monte Cristo

montecristoCan’t put this book down!

We are reading “The Count of Monte Cristo” for our book club. I’ve always wanted to read it. If you’ve never read it, DO IT! Long but worth it.

Have any of you read it?!

Pattern Review: Out & About Dress

DSC_8913 copyI am completely guilty of sewing things mostly for my kids.  I mean, you use less fabric, you are done faster, and my kids love that I sew for them.  I’ve made myself some dresses, scarves, and pj pants, among other things, but I’ve been craving a staple knit dress project.

I met Caroline in person at the Cricut event this year.  She has the cute blog Sew Caroline and designs patterns for Art Gallery Fabrics.  She was wearing a super stylish dress made with Heather Ross’s fabric “briar rose” (see it here if you want a visual), so I had to go and tell her how fabulous it was.  She told me that she made it and was just about to release a pattern.  She offered to send me one, so here I am with her dress pattern on!  I’ve been searching for a pattern like this for a while. You can buy the “Out and About” dress pattern here if you are already aching to get started on this dress!

Big thanks to Faith (8) for taking these pictures, hence there being no picture of the whole dress! I’ll take what I can get for a 10 minute balcony portrait session, free of charge.  Clearly, we do this all the time.  haha.

DSC_8944DSC_8878DSC_8925This pattern was pretty easy to make.  All of the edges matched up perfectly.  The pockets are a great part of this pattern and came together nicely.  I made my sleeves a tad shorter.  Although, I think even shorter would have been better, now that I look at these pictures.  I added a vintage lace collar that I found at a thrift store in Portland.

My troubles with this dress only came from my choice of fabric.  Apparently, I chose a knit that is harder to work with. (womp womp).  My knit sewing has usually been with smaller scarf level scales.  The neckline is the only thing that really shows the mistakes I made because of the fabric, but I covered it with the collar. ha!  The pockets didn’t stretch properly…my fault again.  You have to learn somehow, I guess. ;)  The other thing I REALLY would have benefited from was a walking foot.  I’ve been getting by for a few years without one and I know it’s time to finally get one.

Can anyone recommend how to get one for my Elna?

Go here to download the “Out and About” dress pattern.  Supporting hard-working small business owners is a great thing!  You will spend time printing and piecing together this pattern and other indie pattern designs, but just remember you are keeping their costs down and allowing their business to grow!

Here’s the rest of the pattern tour for lots on inspiration:

Adventures in Dressmaking
Four Square Walls

Alida Makes
Paisley Roots

Lexi Made
True Bias

Sewing Like Mad
A Golden Afternoon

Llady Bird
House of Pinheiro


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Take Heart, Mothers of Little Ones

motherhoodToday these kiddos were helpful and able.

I can remember a time, when I had 3 kids, 3 and under. I felt creatively smothered and unable to finish a project without a few tears (mine or theirs). Take heart, mothers of little ones. You will be here soon. Just snuggle them for now, let them help, and don’t take on too much during this crazy, exhausting, and wonderful time in their life.

Cherish the moments.

DIY Champagne Cocktail Kit with Makr

DSC_1415 copyMy labeling dreams have come true.

For this project, I am beyond thrilled to be partnering with Makr to make this DIY Champagne Cocktail Kit!  I fell in deep deep love with this app.  For all of you who label jars, bins, boxes, gifts, and the occasional kiddo item, this app will be your dream come true too.  You can make so many things- invitations, postcards, and other fun paper products for your business which is really cool. You can be your own graphic designer and customize the ready-made templates. The style of their app and products is RIGHT ON and it is super easy to use.  You can find it here, for iPad only.

DSC_1400 copyI really enjoy making cocktails on the weekends, when we open up our home to friends and the laughter that comes with them.  Syrups and mixes and really important for quick cocktail making, especially for groups.  I’m excited to have these fun labels instead of my sharpie labels or no label at all, which is how I usually roll!  I get confused all the time about which flavors are in my fridge.  Organizing and labels make my heart happy.

Won’t these kits also make the BEST gifts?  You can have a stack of them ready and just grab and go to those wedding showers and parties!  No stress involved and impressive packaging.  I would be excited to receive this.  Just sayin’.

DSC_1484 copyDSC_1347 copyIn my kit, I included 1 mini bottle of champagne, 3 bottles of varying syrups, and 1 jigger or cocktail measuring tool.

Syrup recipes are coming soon!

Each champagne drink can be customized with a little pour of 1 syrup.  So easy.  No intense measuring while you’re trying to talk. These same labels in this project are available for YOU to use on the Makr app!  Remember the app is FREE to download and you don’t have to pay anything to create!  Check out my project and customize it for your style!

Download the Makr app here, These are the labels you will find there from this project (all are customizable):

“DIY Champagne Cocktail Kit” label for your box

“Champagne Cocktail” recipe card for making each drink.

“Ginger Spice Syrup” bottle label

“French 75 Mix” bottle label

“Blood Orange Blend” bottle label

“From San Diego, With Love” to/from tag for gifting

Special note for those of you who use external iPad keyboards: unplug it while using for full app use.

***Special for A Golden Afternoon readers (that’s YOU)- enjoy a FREE Makr credit and 20% off a print order! Just register with the code GAFTERNOON and enter that same code at checkout.***

DSC_1433 copyDSC_1542 copyDSC_1448 copyDSC_1419 copyDSC_1478 copy***Special for A Golden Afternoon readers (that’s YOU)- enjoy a FREE Makr credit and 20% off a print order! Just register with the code GAFTERNOON and enter that same code at checkout.***

This post was kindly sponsored by Makr, but all opinions about this app, the choice to support them, and the project itself are my own.

Grapefruit Ginger Refresher

DSC_0382-RecoveredBet you guys have never been to a virtual baby shower!  Well, you’re at one today!  I am so excited to join with some of my online pals, The Creative Mamas, to throw a baby shower for two expectant ladies in our group of bloggers, Lacy of Living on Love and Carla of Small & Friendly!   We have been friends for while now, so it is a HUGE bummer not to throw a party in person for these ladies, but a virtual PAR-TAY is a close second, right?!

I’m so excited for these friends.  I miss having babies so much!  The snuggles, the cute faces, seeing a little human do something for the first time, and even the diapers.  I love it all.  I’m hoping to have another baby one day, whether from my husband and I or a little somebody who’s out there waiting for us somewhere.  We know that God blesses children to families in so many DIFFERENT ways.  The promise is sure, it can just be hard to see the “right” way for our own family sometimes.  Either way, waiting for a baby, filled with wonder and excitement, is a fun time.  So happy for you two!

Ok, so pretend you just walked into the party, I give you a huge hug, and offer you something tasty to drink.  Springtime is upon us and you’re excited for something to wake your Winter taste buds up, right?

This Ginger & Grapefruit drink is a lovely blend of fresh and energizing flavors, thanks to the slight zing of the ginger and grapefruit.  These two are a power couple, people.  Guests LOVE this drink.  The cute straws and flags on them are from one of my favorites, Minted.  I just peeled the flags off the paper and stuck them on the straws.  Instant cuteness without hours of cutting.

Grapefruit Ginger Refresher

2 ounces of fresh grapefruit juice

1 ounce ginger simple syrup

Sparkling water or club soda, to fill the glass

Grapefruit slices, for garnish

For the drink:

Measure the grapefruit juice and simple syrup in a glass or mason jar.  Add club soda until the glass is almost filled.  Add the grapefruit slice and serve.

For the simple syrup:

In a pot, combine 1/2 cup sugar, 1/2 cup water, and 1 “knob of fresh ginger, sliced.  Cook until the sugar is dissolved.  Cool before mixing in the drink.

20140311-DSC_0350-RecoveredDSC_0366-RecoveredDSC_0374-RecoveredDSC_0341_2-RecoveredEnjoy your baby shower, Lacy and Carla! ;)

For more baby shower fun, check out my friend’s posts:

imagine gnats / Casa CraftyMade / With Moxie / Hideous! Dreadful! Stinky!
petit a petit and family / Rajovilla / Kids Stuff World / Elsie Marley / Buzzmills
A Golden Afternoon / My Life at Playtime / Salsa Pie / this heart of mine


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