Sarah Halstead

It is a joy to feature my North Carolina bloggy friend Sarah Halstead's photography today.  Sarah is a busy Mom a creative blogger and a terrific photographer.  I invite you to visit her blog the Naptime Momtog to see what she's up to while her little boys nap.  Sarah is a natural-light photographer and she loves capturing children and families in a fun relaxed way.You can view her gallery at her website Sarah Halstead Photography.  Please tell her Katherine sent you!

Sarah has generously provided a selection of her work to share with you today. I hope that it will inspire you.

Photographs provided by Sarah Halstead Photography
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Wedding Nails Manicure

On your big day there is no doubt you will be perfectly put together from head to toe.
I went in search of some lovely wedding nails ( manicures) and found these wonderful inspirations.  I think they are very beautiful and creative. Perfect for any special occasion.

Will you be having something like these lovely manicures on your big day? 

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Tea With A Twist

Today's guest blogger is Audra from Rediscovering Domesticity she is generously sharing tea with a twist. A great idea for a bridal shower. The blog is yours Audra,-
Tea with a Twist (on a budget) About a year ago, my mother and I threw a bridal shower for my soon-to-be sister-in-law. We worked hard to meld her shabby-chic sensibilities with her other loves. The result - a Tea with a Twist! shower table image 
Details: The shower was held at my parents’ home for 25 people. Invitations were sent out online for free. Because the shower was in the evening, we took liberties with typical high-tea fare! Decor: We arranged many tables through the downstairs. Each table was covered in a black cloth with a sparkly runner. Fresh flowers from the garden were used in various vessels for centerpieces. The tables were set with mis-matched china that we found at a local antique mall at a great price. Fresh flowers and lace were used to decorate the rest of the house. Tulle was used as garland. Photographs of the happy couple were clipped to the tulle. To add whimsy, animal prints were used as accents (our bride is a zoo keeper). All decor was purchased either at the antique mall at rock bottom prices (we purchased enough china for 25 full place settings for $60!) or from the clearance bins at the local craft store. Flowers were gathered from the garden and placed in vases, jars, and baskets we had on hand.
 shower cheese plates image 
 Food and Drink: The meal started off with personal cheese balls with gourmet crackers. Hot tea, coffee, and iced tea were served. Salad was served family-style. Each guest was given a menu listing 6 lasagna types (our bride LOVES lasagna!). My mom and I served each guest their personalized meal. Guests had three options for dessert including pie, cake, and brownie bars. Long Island iced teas were served after the meal. Mom and I made all of the food and drinks which really kept the cost down. We used recipes we found online plus ones we created ourselves for the lasagnas. Favors: Party favors were hand-made magnets. We used clear 1” craft rocks, glued scrapbook paper to the back, added a magnet on the back then a little bling on the front. Two magnets were wrapped in tulle and tied with animal print ribbon and a photo tag for a great and useable gift. The shower was a success! For under $400, we threw one heck of a party!
Audra Michelle is the wife to her best friend and mom to three little boys under four. You can find her blogging and inspiring moms to THRIVE at Rediscovering Domesticity.

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Lauren D Rogers Photography

Today's featured photographer is Lauren from Lauren D Rogers Photography.

She is sharing the wedding of Jennifer and Rob Dean:
Jennifer and Robert met as law students at Washington & Lee University in Lexington, Va. Rob was the acting judge in a mock trial competition and Jennifer was the expert witness for a friend’s team. Their eyes locked and they silently flirted during the trial. After several coffees dates, they became best friends and never looked back. They drove to D.C. the on the last day of Jennifer's fall exams to celebrate being done with the semester. After a romantic dinner, they walked towards the ice skating rink where several dozen people were skating while listening to '50s tunes under strings of lights. Jennifer was taking a picture of the rink when she felt a tug on her peacoat only to turn around and find the love of her life on one knee asking her to be his wife. She was so surprised and speechless that the first thing she did was not say yes, but start taking off her glove. Though neither from Lexington, Rob and Jen knew that the historic ivy-covered Lee Chapel on the W&L campus was the perfect spot for their elegant wedding. The chapel houses the tomb of Civil War general and former university president Robert E. Lee and is only available for weddings on a limited basis. The event was officiated by a Virginia judge who is a friend of the couple. An incredibly emotional ceremony, there was nary a dry eye in the place. Against the rich red brick of the campus, Jennifer's colors of navy blue and yellow popped beautifully. A reception followed at campus event venue Evans Hall, decorated with towering centerpieces of white hydrangea by University Florist. Guests were treated to live music from The Company Band of Charlotte, NC. The warmth and friendliness of the couple radiated outward in every detail of their event.
* I added the copyright on Lauren's photos

a captured moment before the ceremony


pre nup giggles

I love this photo

one quick spin for Dad

a beautiful bride

I do

lets celebrate!


swept off her feet


first dance as Mrs and Mrs

finding that hidden treasure

wishing you happiness!

All photos provided by Lauren Rogers Photography
Phone | 434.941.3618

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DIY Wedding Cake Card Box

Patty from Patty's Pretty Things is my guest blogger today. She is sharing a beautiful diy cake box perfect for your guests to place cards. An attractive an inexpensive way for your guests to put their wedding wishes. Decorate it to match your theme! 

Patty the blog is yours. Welcome and thank you for sharing with the Keepsakes readers.
 Thank you Katherine.
Well, it's finally July, 2012.  That means it is wedding month for our family, the month we have been planning and waiting for.  Danny and Natasha will become husband and wife on July 14th and leaving for their honeymoon two weeks from today.  

I have wanted to make a faux wedding cake for my dining room table since they got engaged last fall but it has taken me until this weekend to bring the ideas from my head to material form.  Now that it is completed I can see that it was meant to take this long so it would be fresh for these last two weeks to enjoy.  You know how sometimes we make things and are disappointed with the results?  Well, this is a surprise because I am very happy with the way this cake turned out!  This is the first time I have attempted to make anything like this.

27 inches high by 14 inches diameter at the bottom
Years ago I worked with an amazing art teacher who made this faux wedding cake for the bridal shower she hosted for our music teacher.  I had always remembered this cake she made out of fabrics, pearls, cord, and tulle because I had thought when my kids get married I want to make a faux cake to decorate the dining room table, just for the fun of it.

So when Danny proposed to Natasha last September (and she said "yes") I knew I wanted to make a cake.  But how?

 I played with towels and just couldn't get that right.  Then I thought about using boxes, spray painting them white and decorating them.  Sherry from Decorating with Cents creates amazing things with her spray paint and boxes and gave me inspiration for this project.  (Thank you, Sherry!).  

This is kind of what I had in my mind.

source Pinterest
So I found some boxes lying around in the storage room.  I wanted it to be a tall cake since my dining room ceiling is so high. 

I got out my hot glue gun and glued the tops and bottoms together.

Then I spray painted them white. This was my first time spray painting.  I did it outside way in the backyard because I was afraid I would get paint on things that didn't need it (besides myself).  I probably should have started with an undercoating, but I just used the paint for several coats.  

I didn't take any more photos until the end result (I forgot - I was too excited to decorate it!)

I went to Michaels for the decorations and used my coupons.  It's nice that they can scan the coupons from the iPhone.  I found this garland for $4.49.  

I bought a 10 yard bolt of 4 inch white satin ribbon for $8.49.  It's not only beautiful but it covered lots of flaws on the boxes. I started at a corner on the back on all three boxes and folded the ends over and glued them down with the hot glue gun.  I ironed one end of the ribbon after measuring and cutting it so it would lie flat after being glued onto the box.

At each end of the garland is a plastic circle for hanging it so after gluing them down, I made large bows with the ribbon to cover them.  The only two areas of the garland that are glued down are the ends.  It is strong and lays perfectly.  I played with it to make the flowers and leaves lay on the boxes  just right. Then cut a slit in the top to fit your cards!

Total cost for my boxed wedding cake was $21.94.  Spray paint (I used 1 1/2 cans of white satin Valspar from Lowe's) $8.96, ribbon $8.49 and garland $4.49.  The boxes were free!

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