Saturday, May 25, 2013

The Pinishers: family wedding photo display

Last week, for the Pinisher theme "Adventures" I featured my daughter's barn wedding reception, specifically how we decorated the barn entrance.  This week the Pinisher theme is "Family" and, sure enough, I can fit the wedding into that theme too.

Dorian, the inventer of the Pinisher link-up says in her host post that we are free to post about "things we did a few weeks ago." Let's see: it's been 85 weeks since the wedding.  I say it's close enough.  Seems just like yesterday!

On to the pin.  We wanted to display wedding photos of the bride and groom's parents and grandparents.  As I was browsing around Pinterest I pinned this clothespin + string method of hanging photos:

We decided to do our own rustic version.

I gathered the photos and asked the groom's parents to do the same.  I actually ordered the twine and the clothespins from Amazon (got my free shipping's worth of my Prime membership).  I found the weathered blue board stashed in a dark corner of the barn.  The table held the seating assignments and the wedding favors (wooden apple bottle openers woodburned with the bride & groom's initials)

Up until minutes before the wedding began the photos from our side of the family were missing.  The groom's side came through - wedding photos of his parents and his maternal and paternal grandparents were hanging from their respective clothespins.  But ours were stuck in farmhouse and I was running around busy with other matters.  The photos were missing when the photographer took photos of the barn just before the wedding:

(our photographer was Jessica Claire who took the photo up top, and above and below)

The situation was looking a little dire, but I finally was able to fish out the photos and hand them off to my nephew who tore down the lane to the barn in our rented golf cart and hung them just as I had ordered asked.  Didn't he do a great job?

Everyone loved seeing the family weddings pinned up at the entrance to the reception.
Pinisher blog link-up
For more "family" pinterest fun, head over to Dorian's Pinisher link-up.

Thursday, May 16, 2013

The Pinishers: DIY barn wedding reception adventure

 This week's theme for the Pinisher link-up is "Adventures" and my greatest Pinterest adventure was the reason I joined Pinterest in the first place.

Back in 2010 my daughter was newly engaged and my specific purpose in signing up for Pinterest was to get ideas for the wedding.  The young couple wanted to hold their wedding reception on a farm.  Did I talk sense into them?  No, I actually thought it was a cool idea. 

While I'd never yearned to make all the things for a wedding that's pretty much what ended up happening.  Our barn reception turned out to be a major exercise in Do It Yourself.  There had never been a reception in this working barn, and we had to figure it out from scratch.  Luckily we had lots of help from friends and family when it came to set-up week.

In the early planning stages I started a Pinterest Board imaginatively titled "barn reception" and it soon filled with lots of rustic ideas.  In fact almost everything that we did for the reception was inspired by Pinterest finds, and I could (and might) fill many many posts with reports of the various barn wedding-y projects.

Today's post will show how we spruced up the barn entrance.

Here's the iconic reception-in-a-barn photo pin:

Seriously, if you go to Pinterest and search "barn reception" you will find scads of barns with white gauzy curtains in the doorway (for example here, here, and here), with or without a big wreath somewhere on the barn.  I think the photo above is the original and subsequently oft-copied barn + curtain + wreath combination (but the pin doesn't go anywhere except to an image file).

As cool as that Pinterest barn looked, white curtains weren't going to work for us because (1) our barn was white and boring and (2) the bride wanted COLOR and PATTERN.

I live 1000 miles from the wedding site and didn't have the measurements of the barn door height so I guessed.  The six fabrics (from four different stores, including IKEA, Hancock, and some local warehouse stores) were varied in color, scale, and type of pattern (check, plaid, houndstooth, 3 floral).  In more than one case I bought all that was left on the bolt, offering up a little prayer that it would be long enough.  Which it pretty much was, and we just hoped nobody would notice when it wasn't (you didn't notice, right? right!)

How did we execute the curtain idea?  We (and by "we" I mean the groom and his friends) attached the fabric to the top of the doorway with a staple gun and a ladder.

Here's a pin of our handiwork!  (we also made the banner on the side of the barn)


Once the wedding was over we ended up with lots and lots of fabric.  My daughter and her husband are now renovating a "broken" Victorian-era house, and they plan to use the barn curtain fabrics to make curtains for their house.  Wouldn't it be cool if she uses Pinterest to figure out how to make them? (although a staple gun would work in a pinch)

Go check out more Pinished Adventures on Dorian's round-up post.  If you want to join (and you should!) the upcoming themes are here.

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

The Pinishers: a beginner's gallery wall

[I know that the photo below is not a plate of food or a yummy dessert.  I'm joining Dorian's Pinisher link-up again this week, and the theme is "home,"]

A few years ago my cousin and her husband bought a new house.  Three days after the moving van dropped off all of their earthly belongings, they had a completed picture-perfect house: furniture positioned, drapes at the windows, every picture hung.  And although we must have some DNA in common, seeing as we're related, I definitely don't share her "finished house" gene. 

In fact, we moved into our current house 12 years ago, and we are just now getting around to putting things on most of the walls.  Which is not to say that I haven't been thinking about some of these walls for a very long time.  And I've been bringing favorite pictures to the frame shop, and then stacking them on bookshelves.  I even created a whole board just for "walls" on Pinterest:

Most of my pins feature "gallery walls" that is, collections of pictures hung in a big group, usually on a big wall. One example is this pin (which doesn't lead to any additional info, just a photo link):

and this pin (which leads to a HGTV post about fall 2012's trends - see I'm just 6 months behind the leading edge!):

Although I hope to tackle bigger groups of pictures on other walls in the future (watch this space!) I started with a modest gallery-ish wall, similar to this pin (the link leads to a blog post about perfect paint colors, which, indeed has lots of photos of rooms in beautiful neutral hues):

I finally took the plunge and hung some pictures in a group on the end wall of our family room:

I'm amazed at how much more complete the room looks, just by adding six pictures.  I mean, you almost don't notice that our end table is an old wooden packing crate, right?

These pictures make a good group because they are all drawings (well, one's a collage) of our family (and our house) and they're all fairly neutral.  Two were done by my daughter and one by my husband, so I wanted them to be in a prominent spot. 

The wall is my view from the kitchen sink, and seeing all the drawings hanging together makes me smile.  I'm glad I finally pinished this project!  Head over to Dorian's post to see what home-y things the other Pinishers were up to this week.
Pinisher blog link-up

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Spring Salad with Strawberries, Asparagus, and Avocado-Orange Dressing

In case there are any long-time readers out there, I know it's been nearly a year since I've posted on this blog.  Although I have not been photographing or posting my food lately, my adventures in the kitchen have not stopped.  There are tempting recipes to be tried - always! - and now, more and more, I've been finding intriguing recipes through social media.  One site (service? obsession?) I've enjoyed has been Pinterest.  Maybe you've tried it too?  It's borderline-addictive to explore food (and crafts, and quotes, and decorating ideas, and organizational tips) that others have "pinned." And it's useful for me to save great ideas by "pinning" as I find them on my internet forays.

One thing that happens with my pins is that they tend to stay pinned - they sit on my pin boards looking beautiful, but that's often as far as it goes.  To date I've pinned 4,175 things.  As for finished projects from those pins? Um, just a handful.

To remedy this common (as it turns out) situation and get us all trying - and finishing - some of the things that we pin, my internet buddy Dorian has started a roundup for finished pins, pin finishers, or "pinishers" as she calls them/us.

This week's Pinisher roundup theme is "food" (her list of weekly themes here) and I have a pinished product to share, and to link up with the other Pinishers! 

I found this spring salad recipe in a link tweeted by Whole Foods about a month ago.  I pinned it immediately.  And then, wonder of wonders, I actually made it the same week.  And every week since then.

 n.o.e.'s notes:

- This salad is a snap to put together.  I shaved the raw asparagus with a vegetable peeler, and I mixed the salad dressing with an immersion blender.

- I have found it easier - and more attractive - to toss just the greens with the dressing in a large bowl and then portion them onto individual salad plates.  Then I top the greens with the asparagus and then the strawberries, spooning a little more dressing over it all.

the verdict:

I am so glad I pinned and tried this recipe; it will be at the top of my rotation, especially for springtime dinners.  It's perfect for entertaining because it can be prepped ahead of time and assembled quickly before serving.  And it's as delicious as it is pretty.

I'm linking to Dorian's Pinisher roundup: The Pinishers, volume 1, Food - head over there to see the different pinished products, and join in yourself any week.
Pinisher blog link-up