Tag Archives: weddings

spotlights

Spotlight: Heidi Crawford of HMC Designs

I first became familiar with HMC Designs during an Etsy search for all things teddy bear [for my post, “Please Bear with Me“].  It was hard not to fall in love with the adorable designs of Australian Artist, Heidi Crawford.

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The product list includes gift cards, badges [buttons], magnets, colorful plushies, hair bobbles, and baby bibs – all hand crafted and some are even customizable!  HMC Designs started in 2005 and quickly grew from selling at local market stands to a booming retail and online business.  With the recent birth of her daughter, I just had to find out how Heidi finds the time to do it all [because there are days I can hardly find the time to shower!].  I also wanted to know more about her business and motivation …. here’s the Q & A:

How do you balance being a new mom and running your business?

“I try to find a good balance between looking after my daughter, my home and finally my business! I do a lot of my design work when she is napping during the day and after she has gone to bed at night.  I am very lucky to have a wonderful partner and a close knit family who are always available any time I need help or someone to baby sit  for a few hours when I need to fill an order or spend time at a market.
I think the key to running my business successfully is making sure that I am really organized and set achievable goals. This means lots of  “To Do” lists!  There’s nothing better than ticking the “Done” box after you have successfully completed something.”

What is your best selling item?

“My best selling item would have to be my Wedding and Graduation cards.   weddinggrad

I have found that people really love the option to customize the faces so they look like the recipient. This feature makes the card that little bit more special when compared to the generic wedding card you may find in your local store.”

Where do you get the inspiration for all of the cute little characters?


“Currently, I am finding a lot of inspiration in children’s picture books, but I have always been fascinated with imagery from Japanese Pop culture.  As a child I practised my drawing by copying Sanrio characters and cute illustrations found in Japanese magazines.  From here I became interested in Anime and Pop Art in general.  For a few years now I have been collecting lots of colourful and interesting images, figurines and treasures.  All of these provide me with endless amounts of inspiration to continue designing and creating.”

Any plans to bring the products to US stores?

“Up until quite recently I have only been selling my products online and at local art markets.  I have just started approaching stores here and so far I have been getting a really positive response.  So once I have tackled the Australian market I hope to venture overseas to the US.  Having said that, if any overseas wholesaling opportunities pop up in the meantime I will definitely consider them.”

What makes you laugh?

“I love this super cute comic strip called “Patchesâ” –  It never fails to make me laugh.”

What is your favorite home decor item?
roca
“My partner and I purchased some amazing outdoor “Roca” chairs from a fellow stallholder [Carey Potter] at an Artists’ Market here in Melbourne.  They have a really grungy, weathered feel – they don’t look it, but they are really comfortable!
When I have a spare moment, I love to sit out in my backyard on my Roca and relax.”

[Heidi, I just might have to come to Melbourne to get one of these chairs!  I LOVE THEM!!]

Have you been selling the baby bibs [they are adorable!] for awhile or was this something that came about when you found out you were going to be a mom?

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“I started making the baby bibs after my daughter was born. I had a lot of trouble finding good quality cotton bibs that not only did its job but also looked good too.  I gave a few as gifts to friends who had recently had babies and after receiving a lot of positive feedback from them and after my own extensive testing with my own baby, I decided that they would definitely become part of my product range.”

Thank you, Heidi!!!  Can’t wait to see your stuff in the shops, but for now I am content with buying from your Etsy store!

wedding

Accessories for the Ring Bearer

I am sitting on the sofa staring at my computer screen while Ava takes a nap.  Now is my chance to type away uninterrupted and of course, I am drawing a blank!  It’s too hot to think – even with the A/C running.  Or maybe it’s my rumbling stomach reminding me that I skipped breakfast.  Now the big decision for the day – do I make something to eat, sit and wait for the words to come to me, or start cleaning the bathroom?  I was recently reading an article by Kacy Faulconer in Parents magazine titled, “39 Things Every Mom Should Know” and number 3 was ” Do your chores while kids are awake.  Using up naptime to wash dishes or clean the bathroom is truly soul-crushing”, so I guess I’ll keep typing … or make a grilled cheese.

My stomach won.  I made a delicious grilled cheese [cheddar] on organic whole wheat sourdough we got at the Farmers’ Market this weekend.  Yum.  Ava woke up [on cue] just as I sat down to eat it.  Ahhhhh……..What was I blogging about?  Motherhood sidetracks me sometimes.

The ring bearer is part of the wedding tradition dating back to ancient Egyptian times when jewels were presented on ornamental pillows during the ceremony.  When the exchanging of rings became a part of getting married, these traditions were combined.  In today’s weddings, the ring bearer is usually a young boy related to the bride or groom who carries the rings down the aisle on a pillow.  Some couples have the actual rings loosely sewn onto the pillow with thread, while others leave the rings with the best man and send the bearer down the aisle with fakes.  We will have my nephew, Taylor, carry our rings for us … and I haven’t decided if we will go with a traditional pillow or one of these beautiful custom bowls from Paloma’s Nest.

ringbearerbowl

If we do go the traditional route, Emici Bridal has a wonderful selection of pillows to choose from.

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Nothing is cuter than children dressed to the nines in loads of tulle [girls] and cute little tuxes [boys].  Taylor will be wearing a tuxedo for our ceremony and thanks to Me and Matilda, I have tons of great handmade bow ties to choose from – love the colors and patterns!

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There is also a whole bunch of ring bearer gear out there for your dog, but I’m saving that for a post I have in the works for animal attire.  Okay, the babers is eating a magazine.  Gotta run.  XOX!

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Wedding Place Cards & Favors – Buy Handmade or DIY

In my opinion weddings should be small, intimate gatherings as opposed to huge, lavish affairs.  I see no need to invite everyone you have ever met [ie – your fourth cousin and  the guy that grooms your dog].  I feel like the bigger the wedding, the more it becomes about the “Event” and less about the actual union of two people in love.  We are planning a small wedding full of people we cherish and lots of beautiful details.  “A Romantic Evening in the Country”.

My father passed away unexpectedly this past December, but I want to make sure he is remembered at the wedding.  He loved nature – especially pine trees.  The house is surrounded by them [literally].  So, in honor of his memory we will be handing out little seedling pines to our guests.  I found these online at Plant a Memory and they gave me a great idea.  We are going to purchase the pines from a local nursery and then make our own casings out of cardboard paper towel tubes.  We can design our own memorandum / how to plant sheets [on recycled paper] and tie them off with some raffia and maybe a few dried wildflowers.  I’m even thinking about decoupaging the tubes [sounds like a project for my mom and mother-in-law to be!  lol].

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And keeping with the nature theme … check out these heart shaped bird seed favors by 2 Birds in Love.  Made with locally grown organic seed in Frankenmuth, Michigan.

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I like the idea of adding some calligraphy to these origami paper cranes by Craftation and using them as place cards for your wedding guests.

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I think these delicate paper globes are beautiful.  They would look great strung up mobile style or in a streamer line … and they would make great holiday ornaments too!  There’s something so whimsical and romantic about them.  Handmade by an elementary art teacher, Guy’s Art Gal.

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If you’re crafty [or know someone who is], you can save money by making some of the wedding favors and decorations on your own.  You can’t buy the sentiment that personal touches add.  Mom & Carin, hope you have your glue guns ready!  XO

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Save the Date Cards, Cake Toppers, and Lollipop Button Bouquets!

You’ve finally found that special someone to spend the rest of your life with and now you are ready to make it official and share that love with your friends and family at the wedding ceremony you have been dreaming of since you were a little girl.  Planning a wedding can make finding your soul mate the easy part! There are so many details and costs can add up quickly, but don’t worry – it is possible to have your dream wedding without spending a fortune.  Over the next few weeks, I will be focusing on all those little things you can splurge on that put the spotlight on your personality and flare, as well as tips to stretch your budget without sacrificing the look you want.

If you choose to send out Save the Date cards, opt for something simple [save the formality for the formal invite].  I love the bright and elegant design of these cards by Tucci Paper Co.

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And these scratch-off Save the Dates by Unless Someone Like You are soooo original and definitely something your guests will remember!

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This Lollipop Button Bouquet by Jilliann’s is made from satin, tulle, and of course buttons!  I cannot imagine a cuter flower girl bouquet – adorable!!

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And to finish up today’s post … a few of the best custom cake toppers I have seen.

Cake Topper by Dandelion Land

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Cake Topper by Wedding Cake Toppers Studio

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Wedding Photography to Say “I Do” For

Yesterday was supposed to kick off my new Monday series on all things Wedding, but Mike’s sister is town for a visit and family time always trumps blogging time.  I have a few minutes this morning while Ava naps in her stroller, so I figured better late than never.

Now that I am starting to plan my own wedding, I will be sharing the journey with you and all of the inspiration and ideas I find along the way.  A picture is worth a thousand words … or thousands of dollars in the case of hiring a wedding photographer.  You want your special day to be perfect and so the memories you capture should be too.  Today’s wedding photography looks like it belongs in a fashion editorial spread for Vogue.  The images are striking and candid and really capture the personality of the bride and groom.

I love the creativity behind this polaroid shot by Heather Waraksa.  Heather is based in Brooklyn, NY, received her BFA in photography, and has shot editorials, fashion, and still life – and she brings all of that expertise with her when shooting weddings and engagements.  The shot of the bride toking a cigar is priceless!

heather waraksa bride groom polaroid

cigar

Fine Art photographer, Anna Kuperberg captured this beautiful veil shot and some fun loving personality with the smiley faced lollies.

anna kuperberg bride veil

anna kuperberg smiley face bride groom

Award winning photographers and husband and wife team, Prem and Cheridy Mukherjee of Arising Images are based in Michigan.  Their images are inspired by the rewards of bringing others joy and they do an amazing job at capturing those precious moments in a fun and inticing way.

arising images wedding

arising images bride groom kiss

Wedding photos hold so much sentimental value because they allow you to look back and share and experience those precious memories throughout the years.  You don’t have to spend a fortune to get the look you want … research local photographers and when you find one with a style that fits your needs [and budget] make sure you sit down and discuss exactly what you are looking for.  Let them know which images of theirs you really like and feel free to show them other images for inspirational examples.  Make sure you will have plenty of shots to select from and if you have a fun idea, let your photographer know.  It’s okay to collaborate with your wedding photographer … they have the creative vision and photography know-how, but it’s your personality that adds that extra touch.  XO

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