christmas thoughts

Christmas came late for me this year. Usually around 2 months before Christmas, I’d have felt the change in the wind. The festive mood made up of synthesizer-made Christmas carols, the increase in population (seriously, where did all those people come from? Where were they the rest of the year?), Christmas light-ups and fake snow, I’d barely contain my excitement thinking what Christmas gifts to get for friends. I love that shopping rush and also that self-imposed headache getting prezzies for people!

This year I’m spending my first Christmas as Mrs Bushy H., yet I still have absolutely no inkling of what it’s gonna be like. We are so busy, Christmas just seem so far away to really start a conversation on. There are always more immediate matters to attend to. Is this really what being ‘grown-up’ amount to? We have no time to really think about what Christmas is all about and what traditions passed down the generations mean? I just read a post from my favourite blog Under the Sycamore, really, everyone should read it. It’s about what Ashley, the mind behind the blog, wants to teach her children to celebrate the meaning of Christmas and to acquire the gift of giving by showing them by her own examples and getting them to learn them by their own actions. I always want to start my own family traditions and reading her blogs have given me the inspiration to not only create traditions, but also give meanings to them. I’m worried that, if I don’t have time to think about these things now and practise them through my own actions, what kind of example would I be giving my future kids? I’m worried that pure everyday slothfulness will get in the way of imparting precious values during their short impressionable growing years. I’m worried commercialism will get to them first, simply though the gaps of our busy lifestyle. It will be my greatest nightmare when my future kid ask me when is Santa Claus coming.

I am brought back to this one day during my childhood in Sunday School while I’m doing this post. I dreaded Sunday School when i was young because I was shy and joined the church later than the other kids in Sunday School whose parents had been there even before they were born. It was hard for me to make friends and even harder for me to participate in all those active extrovert stuff in class in front of people I know but don’t talk much to. I had given my fair share of excuses not to attend Sunday School, I’d rather sit in the adult Mandarin congregation with my mum. So imagine if on that one day I missed Sunday School, I would had missed the teacher telling us the Christmas story and drilling over and over again into my young mind that, Jesus is the reason for the season, Jesus is the reason for the season. Few years later, I would see that statement outside the departmental store CK Tang and I smiled to myself that the big ‘secret’ is out and people was then reading it across the massive banner. And every year during the Christmas season, I’d remember that – Jesus is the reason for the season.

I hope, in the future, our kids would know that simple truth and do more than what little I’m doing… mostly what I’m NOT doing. If He gave His Life for us, what can we give to other people who needs more to carry on His legacy?

* * *

That said, it is now my guilty pleasure to show you how I would also dream of a white Christmas every year, but never gets it. This is the way I’m getting myself excited about those imaginary ‘chestnuts roasting on an open fire’ and that wintry honeymoon not so far away after Christmas.

1. Woman’s Boots from Bearpaw

2. Pins and Needles Cozy Bow Beret from Urban Outfitters

3. Bunny Earflap Winter Hat from bellz82@Etsy

4. Raccoon Hat from Urban Outfitters

5. Tiny candy pompom snow2 from dadaya@Etsy

6. Love the back of my hand bow gloves in gray from Ruche

7. Limited-edition (STARBUCKS)RED Jonathan Adler Ceramic To-Go Cup from (RED)

What are you doing for Christmas?

 

it’s written in the stars

I wonder how many of you remember watching Little Lulu as a kid… for years I had this vague memory of a little girl and Bing Crosby’s Swinging on a Star in the background, just couldn’t figure out what they were until a few years back. And now I found the video on YouTube!

This was one of the songs I played on my wedding not only because it’s about making choices for your future but also because it’s simply candylicious delightful!

from Martha Stewart Weddings - Wedding Ideas That Sparkle

d.i.y. crochet coasters tutorial

- Got so caught trying to do this tutorial yesterday that I forgot to mention, this is my 100th post! woohoo! -

I’m sharing a tutorial today! Though I think this is more of a behind-the-scene look at how I got it done because I’m not an expert or anything remotely close.

The thing with being in your own wedding is that, you can’t take your own pictures! So I have to “borrow” these pictures from my friends who were, thankfully, there to take down these details for me. I do remember taking pictures of these when they were being done, but I just can’t find the pictures now. Typical!

I made these coasters as wedding favors – Have a drink on us – Get it?

 

Thanks Jan for the the pictures, you may click on the picture to go to her Page on Facebook to check out more of her work!

and a Thank You to Tingyi who took this picture of how they were displayed at my reception table on my wedding day

So first of all, let’s talk about the crochet part. I referred to the pattern in Erika Knight’s book – The Harmony Guide Crochet Stitch Motif and made a few modification of my own so that I got the size that I wanted.

 

book cover

the pattern that was used - sorry about the blurred text!

Instead of 48 chains in the base ring, I made 66 chains, making the donut hole bigger. I won’t go into the details of crocheting, I’ll just let the picture do the talking. Personally, I find it easier if you just look at the stitch diagram.

After the crochet is done, I also felt it with a steam iron and some rust-proof pins. Depending on the yarn that you used, you may want to do it differently. Simply refer to the washing instructions on the yarn label.

Next I printed the design I did out on fabric. I used a normal ink-jet printer, the trick is pasting a sheet of cheap A4 sticker paper on the back of the fabric, making sure that you pressed out all the air bubbles in between, otherwise the ink will smudge and ruin a good piece of fabric. Also cut loose frays of threads by the edge so that they don’t get caught in the printer. Depending on your fabric, but a standard print resolution will do. Too good a print resolution = Too much ink = smudging.

I don’t like to waste, so I do try to maximise space on a piece of A4 size paper by squeezing in as much design as I can. I’d included a blank pdf file below for you to download in the case that you want to try this out for yourselves too. Simply customize it by filling in your own names and date!

hearttypat_coaster

Let me know if this works.

After the designs are out on the fabric, I waterproofed them because I intended these as working coasters which guests can actually use. First I sprayed them, front and back, with some waterproof spray (available at Daiso), left them overnight and waxed the designs with a layer of candle wax. I’m not a 100% confident that this can work, but this was the solution I came out with. I do remember reading somewhere that they used to sell waterproof ink for printers but that is a long time ago and none of the sales person here even knew that existed, so I think they are probably extinct by now.

The following steps are simple. This is where you get your husband-to-be to help out by cutting out the fabric circles with the design and paste them on the back of your crocheted motifs. I used a mixture of white glue and fabric glue and all you need to line is the base ring of the motif. I could had sewed them on, which was my original intention, but I had some 60 odd to complete and I was taking up too many long nights, so I went down the lazy man’s route. Moreover, the glue also helped to prevent fraying!

You will need to lay them out for the next 12- 24 hours to dry and stick properly.

the completed piece, photo by Jan

Do check out my other D.I.Y. goodies I did for my wedding!

a chalkboard has 2 face

a hand bouquet of rolling good fun

getting crafty with my confetti

all shook up for our d.i.y. engagement shoot!

more d.i.y. engagement photos

d.i.y. sundae ring bearer on Ruffled

a turquoise and brown welcome bunting

our wedding booth pictures, part 1 ( keep a look out for part 2! )

our test shots at the airport

I promise there will be more to come!

2010 vh1 divas salute the troops poster

I’m loving this poster.

taken from starpulse.com

Despite my 50s Rock n’ Roll wedding being over, I still can’t quite take my eyes away from all things fifties-inspired… or turquoise… or rock n’ roll music memorabilia... So naturally I felt very compelled to share this poster in its heavily-photoshopped glory. Just so you know, these girls here are the performers this year and Vh1 has launched a “Salute the Troops Photo Mosaic.” using Facebook Connect. For every picture you submit to the mosaic, VH1 will donate $1 to the USO’s Operation Enduring Care. And if you want to find out more, just head over to their website here.

I wondered why Kathy Griffin – the Divas Host, does not have her picture on the poster, I want to see her with those flirty curls and ultra red lips too! And then, I found it:

 

taken from popcrunch

Stunning huh!

 

alice in vogueland

I don’t think I’d met anyone who don’t like Alice in Wonderland.

Well, I never heard it before, but it sounds uncommon nonsense.

{ the Mock Turtle }

There you go. Saw this wonderful photo shoot on Trendland by famous photographer Annie Leibovitz for Vogue US December 2003. I can just look at this again and again.

featuring model Natalia Vodianova

with Tom Ford as White Rabbit

with Nicolas Ghesquiere as Alice's dreaming self

with John Galliano as Queen of Hearts

with Olivier Theyskens (Rochas) as Lewis Carroll

with Marc Jacob as The Caterpillar

with Karl Lagerfeld in Pig and Pepper

with Jean Paul Gaultier as The Cheshire Cat

with Viktor & Rolf as Tweedledum and Tweedledee

with Christian Lacroix - The March Hare and The Mad Hatter

with Donatella Versace as Gryphon and Rupert Everett as Mock Turtle.

In case you haven’t noticed, the model is dressed in the vision of each designer featured in the pictures.

Can’t get enough of Alice? Click this to be inspired once again by this Mad Hatter shoot.

geesh! we never had our own poem before

This guy is an artist! Thanks, Ganesh, for this one!

picture taken by Jan - some kind of Beautiful

The Witness

I saw love today,
She was a beautiful thing,
Resplendent,
Effervescent,
She was Awe Inspiring,
When She Walked,
Through a shared kiss,
I saw Faith,
I saw Fervour,
I witnessed a Man’s Bliss…
What i have,
I place in prayer,
That love like that,
Stays Still forever,
That they remain,
Love’s Astute Tower,
That in Their Union,
Their Fears Will Cower,
Love is a Gift,
Unlike no other,
May love Always Be,
Their Live’s Signature….

{ Ganesh Perumal }

 

hair inspiration

“Love is a temporary madness. It erupts like an earthquake and then subsides. And when it subsides you have to make a decision. You have to work out whether your roots have become so entwined together that it is inconceivable that you should ever part. Because this is what love is. Love is not breathlessness, it is not excitement, it is not the promulgation of promises of eternal passion. That is just being “in love” which any of us can convince ourselves we are. Love itself is what is left over when being in love has burned away, and this is both an art and a fortunate accident. Your mother and I had it, we had roots that grew towards each other underground, and when all the pretty blossoms had fallen from our branches we found that we were one tree and not two.”

{ Captain Corelli’s Mandolin }

1 more day to go.

Today we firmed up the day’s programme and confirmed our song selection. While I’m doing my last minute packing, I’m still uninspired with my actual day hairdo and so instead of packing and thinking through the wedding vow, I’m searching for these:

lela rose from Become Gorgeous

from UK Now Magazine

hairstyles from Wedding Channel

 

all shook up for our d.i.y. engagement shoot!

Hi lovelies!

Sorry it’s been a while since I posted. As The Date draws nearer, there seems to be a neverending surprise in store for us round every corner. Many brides ahead of me had advised, Enjoy the process. Well, I am trying to, amidst the tons of things that I can’t seem to delegate though I think I am a much happier person nowadays than probably a few months ago. Also, thanks to the help of a few good friends and bb, there are certain aspect of the wedding that I can say that, thankfully, I don’t have to spare any additional thought to.

And here, as promised, the pictures I included in my wedding invitation CDs.

Just because I absolutely love the Big Apple and how this V-J Day kiss captured by Alfred Eisenstaedt fitted our theme, we duplicated it!

One of the greatest challenge of this shoot was finding locations that look nostalgic and carry that old romanticism that probably our grandparents felt when they were dating. We didn’t have much time prior the shoot to go down to the locations for the pre-production planning. Everything was done and thought of on the spot, in fact one of the location, the one with the swing, was an impromptu stop. We drove by the place while looking for another, liked how the place felt and stopped for photos. My friend Rosie is a great help being our extra pair of hands and I love her so much for being so patient and helpful the entire time. It was a very hot and humid day – it was not easy being all that.

Anyways, drop in again, and you may find more photos from this d.i.y photo shoot!

“hope” is the thing with feathers

“Hope” is the thing with feathers— That perches in the soul— And sings the tune without the words— And never stops—at all—

And sweetest—in the Gale—is heard— And sore must be the storm— That could abash the little Bird That kept so many warm—

I’ve heard it in the chillest land— And on the strangest Sea— Yet, never, in Extremity, It asked a crumb—of Me.

{ Emily Dickinson }

I just ruined my first attempt in making my own birdcage veil by cutting the length of the 9 inch veil too short. 19 inch to be exact. Now I gotta buy another yard. Just hope that the next time I do it, it’s gonna be perfect because…

its 19 days away!

So I can’t afford another blunder like this since the luxury of time is now not something I can enjoy.

Meanwhile, I’m moving on to the fascinator.

 

#105 Ostrich feathers, pearl brooch with crystals, pearl strands from birdcageveils.com

from Stephanie Williams Photography

 

The Cream Puff from Batcakes@Etsy

 

from Junebug Weddings

 

from Junebug Weddings

I believe I more or less know what I want to achieve with my d.i.y. hair fascintor. Remember these posts?

hat tilt!

veil you be mine?

gioielli accessories

feathers and birdcages

ban.do for the bride

On a side note, isn’t this a terrific idea!

from What Junebug Loves

wedding decor: table runners

from NONPAREIL magazine issue 6

from Inspired Bride blog

from NONPAREIL magazine issue 6

from Martha Stewart Wedding

from Martha Stewart Wedding

from Inspired By This

In the ’50s, a lot of girls never saw beyond the wedding day.

{ Helen Reddy }

I’d never thought I would be looking at table runners. Look what the wedding has turned me into. Then again, they really enhance the theme of the occasion and add some splashes of colour ( and conversation pieces, I hope) to the tables.

P.S: To go to the source of the pictures, simply click on the picture to go to the websites.