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Exclusive: Chandra of ‘Oh Lovely Day’ DIY wedding blog

17 Apr

I recently interviewed the lovely owner of ‘Oh lovely day’ blog Chandra Fredrick she’s also one half of ‘Tilde Designs’ (personalised wedding stationers.) The stylish bright-eyed LA resident told me all about what got her in to the booming DIY wedding business and some tips for any #TWIP’s (Twitter Wedding Inspiration Pals) out there.

Photo:Jennifer Roper The lovely Chandra in her wedding gown

How did you stumble in to the wonderful world of DIY weddings?

While planning my own wedding!  I wanted to DIY a lot of my wedding to both personalize it and keep it within my budget.  I fell in love with DIY projects and elements and think that is really the way a bride can make her wedding unique.
What are 3 key elements to making a DIY wedding a success?

Keeping it simple, taking on projects you can actually do yourself, and not to do too many DIY’s, otherwise you’ll drive yourself crazy!

Photo:Jennifer Roper Chandras innovative drink stirrers for her own wedding

What types of people tend to opt for DIY weddings?

I think all types of brides opt for DIY weddings these days.  Even brides with a big budget want to do a DIY project to personalize their day.  DIY is all the rage!
What is the most obscure wedding theme you have come across?  

I have seen everything I think.  But one of my favorite unique ideas was turning the game “Jenga” into a guestbook. Such a fun idea and a way to always see your guestbook everytime you play!  You can see the post here.

Jenga wedding guest memories

Tell us all about your wedding.

My wedding was an outdoor ceremony in Southern California in Aug. of 2009.  It was a labor of love and contained many DIY projects.  In fact, my maid of honor and I designed all of my paper goods (save-the-dates, signs, invitation suite, menus, ALL of it!) and printed most of it ourselves.  We even started an etsy shop as a result of our collaborations on my wedding (Tilde Designs).  My wedding was everything I hoped it would be and more- sweet and heartfelt, surrounded by our friends and family and the ocean, marrying my best friend, and having a great party!  You can see it featured on Style Me Pretty and The Knot.  And there is more on my blog here.

Photo: Jennifer Roper Chandras dress was the Fern gown by Melissa Sweet (Fascinator - Etsy artists)

What are your colour palette predictions for Summer weddings in 2011?

I think bright colors are making a comeback – especially vibrant pinks, purples, and blues.  
What does the future look like for DIY weddings?

I do not think DIY elements in weddings are going away anytime soon, and to me that is a good thing!  There is nothing better than a sweet and personal wedding.

Please do visit Chandra’s blog, it’s so inspiring (even for those who aren’t even thinking about marriage just yet.)


Ark of Cambridge: New vintage floor snoop around

4 Apr

The perfect soirée ensemble

My lovely pal who currently resides in Cambridge shares my craving for vintage clothing, she took a sniff around the new vintage clothing range at Ark.

For anyone who hasn’t visited or heard of the store before, there are two branches; one on Norfolk street and the other on St Mary’s passage. The latter being the shop with the vintage clothing line.

It’s a charming handmade and antique store full of one-off items, curious furnishings and now a new hand-picked vintage clothing range.

In a previous post about Ark I mentioned that the curtain was to be unveiled on their collection of vintage threads.

Lots of post-war beauties and a few 1980’s teenage wardrobe memories.

This lovely friend of mine had a big old snoop around the Ark store and was utterly charmed by the arrangement (at the top of the spiral staircase) however she was mildly dissapointed at the lack of clothes over all, she said “(S)eeing as they only have the vintage section open on Saturday’s I thought they would have more clothes overall.”

Ah well, another lesson learned; preparation is everything. From what I can see though, a lot of thought has gone in to the layout of the shop floor, so a pat on the back to the store’s creative director.

Ideal for a night cap

SHOES SHOES SHOES! Imelda-style!

Here are a couple of images of what’s on offer:

Dutch fairytale family store: Hema

30 Mar

When my mum and dad journeyed to Amsterdam last year (2010) they managed to pick up some patterened plastic bunting from a family super market.

I have it trailed throughout my room, and it always lifts my mood when I wake-up to it. There are flashes of cherry red, fuschia pink, lime green and sunshine yellow. It’s smattered with gingham and ditsy flower prints, so basically it’s right up my street.

I did a little sniffing around to see where it was from, and I stumbled across the wonder that is ‘Hema‘. I really wish I’d popped in here when I was in Amserdam.

They take care of everything, from picnic food, to darling bicycles, to orienteering equipment for kids, they even sell clothes. I think it’s kind of like a Woolworth’s (R.I.P) or a Wilkinsons, but with a little Ikea magic.

Their gardening range is super-cute, personally I want the ‘Kweekkistje‘ or wooden plant tray. Also if I had a decent garden at the back of my student house I’d love some  ‘insectenpot‘ to contain and study insects I might come across.

I think we need a little sprinkle of Hema in England, it’s got a lovely self-sufficient vibe about it. It’s making me excited about summer and nature, and all the great memories you get to create at these times.

Check out their brochure here, or follow their homey updates on Twitter (they’re in Dutch, but the links are adorable.)

Spoilt for choice: CRAFT & VINTAGE FAIRS

11 Mar

Just been bombarded with a few fairs happening this weekend through word of mouth, thought I’d do my good deed for the day and pass along the information:

1) CLOSE-KNIT COMMUNITY BASED & AFFORDABLE: Mad March special @Stockport Victorian Town Hall, Stockport, Sunday 13th March, 10am-4.30pm. [Second Sunday of every month.]

Pic: Alan Lowe

2) CRAFTY HANDMADE STUFF: Angel’s craft & vintage fair, @All Saints Church, Chester, Cheshire, Saturday 12th March, 11am-4pm.

Fair Angels

3) MASSIVE VARIETY OF VINTAGE: Sutton vintage & arts fair, @Sutton Coldfield Town Hall, Birmingham, Sunday 13th March, 11am-5pm.

Pic:Sutton Vintage

Canvas Songbird brooch

19 Jan

Cross stitch to secure wing

After falling in love with a whole host of customised Twitter buttons from fellow craft and design blogs – I felt the desperate need to fashion my very own Spring inspired Songbird.
I did a little sketching and crafting finding the exact shape I wanted. My Mum then walked in and asked why I had made a messed up looking dolphin, (always there to put me in my place.)

Inspiration:Custom/illustrated Twitter buttons, photoshop ‘drawing a flaming bird’ tutorial, material birds, seasons, birdwatching, birds at Emma Bridgewater and patchwork.

Project:I sketched out a few minimalist bird shapes and trimmed out a similar bird from some canvas material (leaving 1mm for stitching) I wanted the bird to look simple and sweet and I continued with a running stitch all around the bird, stuffing it with a little synthetic padding. I added a couple of accents with a gingham wing sewn on with a few cross stitches, (cross stitch always looks like kisses and makes me smile) and a chewed up button for an eye. On reflection I replaced the originally black button eye for a cola cube coloured tatty brown one. (To use as a brooch, merely feed a pin through the back like you would with a paper poppy.)

Sketched and cut

Simple running stitch

Bit of Synthetic padding

TOPTIP:This bird is far from perfect (hence my mum’s comments) but it makes me happy, and reminds me Spring is here already, bye bye cold Winter and burst pipes. So my tip is to create your own in a likewise manner, the more character and tattier the better. Also if you dont favour the running stitch, try a hemming stitch for a closed neat edge (for this use a thicker yarn, or darning thread or the fabric will fold and crease.) Found this helpful tutorial on Youtube, fast-forward to about half-way through. She’s a bit of a talker!

Kept the reverse simple

Meep Meep

A Sartorialist post we’ve all been waiting for

13 Jan

Scott Schuman

Scott Schuman, otherwise known as ‘The Sartorialist‘ bought about the idea of a ‘digital park bench’ to our computer screens through his artistic snapshots of ‘fashionista’ passers by. Paris fashion week, Milan, New York and London have been his regular haunts – but more recently he’s popped up in Florence and Seoul, Korea.

Platforms such as Grazia magazine and FaceHunter style blog have both adopted this voyeristic standpoint. You can even refine your search to specific global locations with sites like Street Peeper. Professionals say this ‘Sartorialist’ invention has even established itself as a new brand of journalism.

Schuman, however has his signature style and is more fine art substance than fleeting fashion style. He often snaps the ‘ordinary folk‘ of life, in his bid to inspire and capture all kinds of visual art. I’ve been checking in with ‘‘ for some time now, and if you’re like me and think ‘people watching’ should be an official pass-time then this is the epicentre of where you should indulge in your favourite hobby.

The kind people of Intel were lovely enough to give us a 7 minute long insight in to how the visual maestro actually does it (Scott posted this mini-film on his blog.)

Please do enjoy (probably not half as much as I did):

3D antique Bibliophilia letter

9 Jan

Bib·li·o·phile [bib-lee-uh-fahyl, -fil]–noun a person who loves or collects books, esp. as examples of fine or unusual printing, binding, or the like.

Living amongst the books

I can finally post this piece, it was a christmas present for Daddy – and he’s proud as punch of it. Before he unravelled the paper I said “No one else is the world has this” – and it’s true. That’s the ultimate joy that comes with crafting and making, you know that you’ve added your own accents and colours and textures and general flair in to your project.

Picture hook

Inspiration:Wisdom, antique browning book pages, French duck egg blue, bibliophilia, sitting for hours with a good book, love, 3D font and texture.

Hearts and words

Project: Just like my previous 3D letter project I bought the product in a craft shop for £2.99 – (made from brown card.) These 3D letters are becoming increasingly common in craft shops, but shop around to make sure you don’t get ripped off. I wouldn’t pay more that £3-4 for one. For this I used a wall paint sample and mixed in a little P.V.A. glue to ensure the paint sat on the brown paper, rather than appearing watery. I covered the front and back faces of the letter ‘D’ with the lighter ‘Duck egg blue’ and the outer and inside surface area’s with the deeper mountain rain – creating an idea of light and dark.

I then repeated this coat a second time after it had dried, so that the letter was seamless. I then mixed up a two-part water, one-part pva solution and cut strips of text to place along the spine, and cut out hearts, raindrops and scraps of paper all around the inside. To me it looks like you’re peering inside someone’s head, seeing all their thoughts and messy unformed ideas.

Inspiring words down the spine

PVA drying on the text

Paint creates light & dark

Drying nicely

TOPTIP:Dry by hanging up with a length of string, against a notice board (not against your beloved naked wall.) Instead of antique book pages, you can print off some songsheets (or use old one’s you don’t need) the bass. treble cleff and semi-quavers will look even more effective than printed text. I added on a picture hook at the back  using a glue gun, so it can be hung on the wall if needs be.