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Casual Friday: Today's Outfit - 5.30.14

Today I am starting a new blog category called Casual Friday. Those of us that work in a traditional office environment can experiment with fashion a bit throughout the work week, but we all know that Fridays are our one opportunity each week to be ourselves clothes-wise... to flaunt those shoes that you just can't pull off with business attire, rock some edgier accessories, or heck, just show off some of your denim. 

On Fridays I will try to share my OOTD (outfit of the day), and encourage you to share yours as well on the Fab Everyday Facebook page, or tweet me at @fabeverydayblog so we can share fashion inspiration!

Today's outfit was really all about the shoes, which I got from Forever 21.  Have you ever found some shoes that you love so much that you end up planning outfits around them just to wear them?  That was the case with these today.  The top was also from Forever 21 (a $10 sale!), and the jeans from Express.  Since the shirt has some studs on the shoulders, I opted not to add any additional jewelry accessories.

Looking forward to seeing your Casual Friday outfits!


Urban Blue, Orange, and White Nursery

Yeah, so this post is like, 2 years overdue.  But I am finally getting around to sharing the pics of Sawyer's nursery décor. 

For economical purposes, we wanted to use some of Grayson's nursery furniture when we were designing Sawyer's nursery.  It was perfect timing to upgrade Grayson's room furniture, as he was 2 when Sawyer was born, and we were ready to swap his nursery furniture out for sleek, white, and reasonably priced furniture from Ikea's Malm line (to see G's nursery, click here to read about his Burnt Orange and Charcoal Grey Nursery).  So, for Sawyer's room, we had to find something that would coordinate with the white and cherry wood furniture.  We also thought it would be ideal to reuse the gray nursing chair and orange circular shag rug and orange linens from Grayson's room.

The inspiration finally came together when by BIL got us two pieces of art from a store he loves in Dallas called We are 1976.  They both had an urban motif, so we decided to go with an urban theme, then settled on a nice dark blue, white, and orange color scheme.

The furniture is the BabyMod Park Lane line from Wal-Mart.  The gray chair is Ikea's Tullsta chair.  The lamp is also from Ikea, the Dudero (a steal at only $14.99!).  Oh, and the picture frames and curtains too.  Don't you love how the curved lines on the curtains coordinate with the curve of the lamp?  In addition to the price and contemporary style, I love Ikea curtains since they start out as a once-size-fits all super long length that you can cut and hem down to the size you need.  As for frames, I don't go anywhere else for frames, as you just can't beat Ikea's price for solid frames that include matting.

The urban theme wouldn't be complete without these skyline bookends that I found on Amazon (disclosure: this is an affiliate link, which means I receive commission from Amazon if you make a purchase using the link)

Glad I finally got to blog this before we transition Sawyer to big kid furniture!

More resources for new babies:


Easy Lamp Makeover

One of the things I love about DIY is that you can have anything you want.  What I mean by that, is you don't have to be limited by what is for sale or what you can find.  You can create something from scratch, or, better yet, you can repurpose and change existing items to be exactly what you want.

One example is a look I had in mind for our master bedroom.  I wanted a pair of lamps with black, stacked-ball bases and modern, white lampshades.  I couldn't easily and cheaply find the kind of lamp I was envisioning, but I did manage to find something similar enough, that all I would need was a can of black spray paint to create the exact lamp look that I wanted.  I knew from previous projects (such as the one for my laundry room where I repurposed an old, brass chandelier with a can of white spray paint) that a can of spray paint can make a lot of difference, without much work.

I started with a pair of these reasonably-priced lamp bases from Target:

Threshold Acrylic Stacked Ball Lamp Base - Clear Small
Target, $26.99

I added a coat of spray paint primer, and a few coats of glossy black spray paint.

Add a simple, white lampshade (also found at target), and here is the final result:

We now have a pair of these lamps on the side tables that surround our bed.


Cute Swimsuits for Mamas

It's just about swimsuit season.  While that means the weather is fantastic, it can also be a source of anxiety... especially if you are like me, and have a body that shows the signs of having had two c-sections. 

On my Pinterest, I have been collecting pins for mama-body approved swimwear that still allow ladies like me to feel stylish and cute.  Here are my favorites:

Yeah, if I could afford this one, I'd be all over it! Chanel.

This one I actually bought last year in teal, and it is super flattering. La Blanca Ruched Bandeau One-Piece Swimsuit.

Not sure where this one is from, but I love the vintage feel.

Sun Seeker by MAIO Swim 2013.

Norma Kamali, Walter Mio ruched bandeau swimsuit.

Norma Kamali, Ruched swim dress.

Tommy Bahama.


Don't know if this one would work for my body, but I love it and had to pin it anyway :).

Do you have any favorite, flattering suits?

For more ongoing fashion and style tips for the busy woman, follow @fabeverydayblog on Instagram, and shop my looks at my Instagram Shop page.


Dinosaur-Themed Birthday Party

As I mentioned in last week's post on the DIY dinosaur-shaped crayons, we went with a dinosaur party for Sawyer's 2nd birthday party (or as Sawyer says, "dino-daur, raaaaawwr!").  One thing that was awesome about planning this party was that I was able to get pretty much everything for it from Amazon, Ikea and our local HEB grocery store.  The mail ordering from Amazon and not needing to make multiple stops made the planning easier.  Plus, with Amazon, you save money on shipping by searching for items that are free-shipping through Amazon with a minimum purchase. 
Disclosure: This post contains some affiliate links, which means that if you click on one of the product links and make a purchase, I may receive a commission.  This does not cost you anything additional, and helps me to keep the rest of my content free, so thank you!
The party color scheme was brown, green and khaki.  Click here for my planning and inspiration board on Pinterest, but here are our the planning and detail photos from Sawyer's party.
Welcome sign on the door.
Happy Birthday banner (sorry for the back-lighting!).  I created the art myself, and used brown craft paper for the background.

We used some live potted plants from Ikea for décor, along with these reasonably-priced Tolsby frames ($1 each!) as sign-holders.  I also got a few extra khaki colored plant pots to use as the utensil holders.

Utensils and paper goods were all biodegradable, eco-friendly products.  I was able to find a big party pack on Amazon that wasn't that much more than a non-eco-friendly budget party pack from Party City.  This way we felt better about ourselves, and BONUS - they coordinated nicely with the brown and khaki color scheme.  Napkins here.

We separated the food out into categories: carnivores and herbivores.  The carnivore menu included lil' smokey pigs in a blanket, chicken taquitos, meatballs (see my crockpot party meatballs recipe here), and dinosaur-shaped chicken nuggets.

I halved heads of green and red cabbage and hollowed them out to create decorative bowls for sauces and dips.

The herbivore menu included veggies, fruit, chips and guacamole, and pita chips with hummus.

Of course, we can't forget the oh-so-important third category: desserts!  As we like to do (Grayson loves helping roll out sugar cookie dough and using cookie cutters to make the shapes), we used dinosaur-shaped cookie cutters we received as a Christmas gift to make dino sugar cookies.

I dipped pretzel sticks in meltable vanilla candy coating to make "dino bones," and used candy eggs (M and M's and Whoppers - worked out nicely that this party was the day before Easter) for "dino eggs."  We also set out a bowl of gummi worms.

What party is complete without cupcakes?  Instead of making cupcake toppers (I usually DIY some cupcake picks), I found this pack of 72 mini vinyl dinosaurs on Amazon to use as toppers.  The extras also were a great bonus for the favor bags. 

Beverages were ice water and "swamp juice" (Green Gatorade... I coped something I did for Grayson's jungle-themed first birthday party).

For the favor bags, to continue with our color scheme, we used these paper lunch bags from Amazon, and clipped them together with a wooden clothes pin and a "RAWR {Thank You}" sign.  Note the little dinosaur toys that I found at the dollar store in each of the Ikea plants.
.Favor bag components (all from Amazon except the crayons that I made - though the supplies and wrapping for the crayon project were also from Amazon): dinosaur bubbles, dinosaur tattoos, mini vinyl dinosaurs leftover from the cupcake toppers, dinosaur lollipops, play dough with a DIY "Thank You" label, and a set of dinosaur crayons.  Click here to read my blog post with instructions on how to make the dinosaur shaped crayons.
One of the party activities was a "dino dig." This was really fun!  I set up a bucket with some play sand and small paint brushes from Home Depot, along with some plastic sand shovels.  In the sand we buried genuine dinosaur fossils (you can actually purchase these by the lb. from Amazon!) and some toy dinosaur bone fossil toys.  This was a combo of an activity and more party favors with the treasures the kiddos (I mean, the little paleontologists) found.

See the birthday boy having fun in the sand (on the left) with his big brother carefully dusting off a fossil (on the right)!

Another fun party for my boys with a lot of personal touch!  Even though Grayson's birthday is 7 months away, the kid is already starting to plan his theme (planning early?  He's not my child or anything...).  It is currently a combo of Iron Man, Paw Patrol, and dragons.  We'll see how that comes together if he doesn't change his mind before then!

Edited to add: All printables for the party are available in this post here.  These printables are free, but I would appreciate a follow for @fabeverydayblog on social media (you can find me on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, or Snapchat with that username) in return.  If you post pictures of your parties, tag @fabeverydayblog in them so we can see what you do!  Finally, if you blog about your party, please link back to in your blog posts to credit the printables and inspiration.


Finally a Good, Truly Metallic Nail Polish!

I love silver, and have never really found a nail polish that is truly metallic instead of just glittery or shiny (I am talking about the kind you can use at home, not the Shellac or Minx you can get at salons)... until now.  It's the Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure in #150 Hi Ho Silver.  They also have gold, but I haven't tried it yet.  It looks like it is a silvery polish with a high concentration of tiny metallic silver flecks, which give it a great metallic look.
I was already a fan of Sally Hansen's Complete Salon Manicure line, as it goes on really easily and dries quickly between coats.  I think what makes it special is the shape of the brush... makes for a more accurate application.  The price is also great, and I got mine at my local HEB grocery store. 
These don't last as long as the Salon Effects strips (which I am a HUGE fan of... see this review), but didn't really chip much after a week.  I did notice fading at the tips, but no major chipping.
Sally Hansen is also one of my favorite topcoats.  Overall, I don't feel like I can go wrong with their nail products.  One day I might spring for their home gel nail kit!


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DIY Fun Shape Crayons from Silicone Molds

We decided to go with a dinosaur theme for Sawyer's 2nd birthday (full planning photos and details coming to the blog soon).  As I was looking for options for the favor bags, I came across some really cute dinosaur crayons on Etsy.  Unfortunately, since I had to make 20 favor bags (and these weren't the only things in the bags) they weren't really in my budget... but I couldn't find anything that I liked as much that would be as practical of a gift and so fitting for the theme.  So, I decided to DIY (especially after having learned how easy - and with amazing results - using silicone ice cube trays for molds can be with these DIY candy cupcake toppers I made for my husband's birthday last year).  When party planning, I try to find a balance on what I am willing to pay for (for the convenience) vs. what I can make myself (to save money or to be able to fully customize it for my needs).  This is a case when I wanted it enough to make it, but not enough to kick the extra buck to just buy it and save myself the effort.  It was a pretty easy project, though it was time-consuming to make the amount of batches I needed for 20 favor bags with only one mold.  But it was fun, and I'd do it again!
Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links, which means I receive commission if you make a purchase using the link.
Probably the most time consuming part is the first step: unwrapping the crayons.  I then broke a few into a microwave-safe bowl, and microwaved (at regular temperature) in 30-60 second increments, stirring in between, until the crayons were fully melted.

I spooned the melted crayon wax into the molds, one shape at a time, then moved on to the next color.  No worry about dripping outside the molds, or even onto the counter, as the wax comes off really easily once it cools and hardens.
The key to keeping the bowl and spoon clean between colors was to wipe them out (I just used a paper towel) while the wax was still hot, and it would come right off.

After I had filled the mold, I put the tray in the freezer for 15 minutes so that the wax could fully harden.  When done, they pop right out of the molds easily, and are ready to go!

I ended up with sets that included 4 shapes in 4 different colors (so cute!)

I sealed each set up in a plastic treat bag with a twist tie (both of which can also be purchased in bulk from Amazon).

There you go!  Easy, peasy, lemon-squeezy.