Thursday, July 26, 2012

Glazed Strawberry Cake Recipe from Esscents

I learned about Esscents soaps when I came across them on Twitter and I have been a fan ever since. Audrey Rosenfeld and Paige Eaton are the two friends behind Esscents – Scents, Soaps and More.  They handcraft a wide variety of soaps, lotions, lip balms and other luxurious bath and body products. I asked Paige to share a fabulous recipe, perfect for this time of year - Glazed Strawberry Cake!

- 1 box white cake mix
- 3 heaping tablespoons of flour
- 1 package strawberry gelatin
- 1 cup cooking oil
- 4 eggs
- ½ cup of water
- 1 package frozen strawberries
- 1 can of white frosting 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Make sure strawberries are totally defrosted.  If using whole strawberries, cut into small pieces.  Mix cake mix, flour and gelatin and add in oil, beat in the eggs.  Add water and ½ the package of strawberries.  Mix well – best to use an electric beater for a fluffier cake.   Make sure all the strawberry pieces are blended.  Bake in greased tube or bundt pan for 35-40 minutes. Take out and let cool. 

Melt ½ can of frosting in microwave until it reaches a glaze consistency.  Use some of the leftover strawberry juice to mix in to give the glaze a light pink color, then drizzle over cake when it is cool, but not cold. *

Adapted from The Junior League of Baton Rouge’s River Road Recipes cookbook:  

I don't know about you, but my mouth is watering! Not only does this cake look delicious, so do many of her soaps. Would you believe this Lemon Chiffon Cake is actually soap?

Based in Washington state, they use good-for-you ingredients such as moisturizing glycerin and skin-softening goat’s milk and oils. They don’t use sulfates, detergents, parabens or other harsh chemicals.

If you are planning a wedding, shower or party, be sure and check out Esscents’ selection of soap favors - a unique item that guests can take home and enjoy well after your special event. Esscents’ soap seashells, hearts and daisies are their most popular favors for weddings and showers. These pretty, decorative soaps can be custom made with your choice of color, fragrance and packaging. 

Audrey and Paige also create fun favors for children’s parties such as cupcakes, dinosaurs, trucks, butterflies and zoo animals.  They come in bright colors and kid-friendly fragrances. Esscents also makes custom gift-boxes of decorative soap for birthdays or hostess gifts or, even better, a gift to yourself!You can see their large selection of soap favors and other types of bath and body products at

You can also find them blogging at, on Facebook at and on Twitter at

Friday, April 13, 2012

A Cottage Chic DIY Project

It's been awhile since I've posted as our family has been busy on a much-needed and enjoyed vacation and then knee surgery for my husband. But I am back with a fabulous guest post from Blessy of Stellar Tatter and I hope you love it as much as I do...

Hello, ShabbyNChic readers! It's Blessy here from Stellar Tatter sharing a little project that I have been working on during these past few days (with the help of my sister). This is my first time guest posting, so I'm very delighted and excited and I hope you will enjoy this simple upcycling project which you can also try making in your spare time.

I have these nine wooden photo frames that were sitting around in my room, waiting for the perfect opportunity to be used. My original plan was to use them to display retro-inspired craft paper and hang the frames one by one above my bed to compensate for my lack of a huge headboard. But one time, I found this beautiful framed vintage print at the thrift store and decided that I wanted that better as a space-filler above my head; so my lonely frames were left once more to rekindle with the dust under my bed.

But not for long! Because here they are being transformed into something cottage chic!

I took out the glass and the cardboard backing from each frame (saving them up for another project) and painted the natural wood with white acrylic paint. This is my first time to use paint for repurposing items, so I feel like I made a silly mistake of using a spray can when I could probably just used a good ol' paintbrush. It was faster, though! For touch-ups, I still had to do with the brush.

I bought this long strip of lace curtain at the thrift store which I cut into rectangular pieces that were large enough to fit the entire frame. As it turned out, the length was perfect for nine frames! Whew, didn't have to make another run to get an extra one! If you ever decide to try this, too, you can use any old lace curtain or fabric that you have in hand. 

Using a glue gun, I glued the fabric onto the frames, leaving little gaps in the middle for inserting strings (see photos below). At first, I was applying the hot melted glue on the wood before I let the fabric sit on it (as seen in the photo above), but later on, I've decided to lay the fabric on the wood and then let the glue seal the two by applying it on top. That made them stick together better and more securely. When the glue had finally cooled and hardened, I trimmed the excess material off of the sides of the frames.

To join them all together, my sis and I tied them up with hemp twine, inserting the strings into the unglued slots. A little more trimming and we're all done! We also used twine to hang them up, but you can use ribbons or long chains (which I would've used if they were available to me).

Et voilà! A cottage-chic hanging decor that can be used for tons of purposes!

Aside from being a wall decor, it could also serve as a room divider (add more frames to fit the space!). It could also be a fun alternative to curtains! Or if your bed is headboard-less like mine, then this would make for a pretty country chic headboard! Whatever it may end up being used as, it would really be a nice focal point. And the best thing of all, it was pretty cheap to make! For $15 or less, you can have your very own framed lace hanging decor. If you're super resourceful, you might end up not having to pay a buck.
Have fun and happy crafting!

A very special thank you to ShabbyNChic for having me here! I had fun making this for her blog. Hope to catch you all as well on the other side at my online abode, Stellar Tatter. Drop by sometime and bring biscuits! :)

**You can also find Blessy on Twitter and Facebook.

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Giveaway Winner Announced!

I had a quick giveaway on Twitter and the winner of the one-of-a-kind wall rack is:

Congratulations to the winner and thanks to all who entered. Stay tuned here and on Twitter for more giveaways to come!

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Fast Free Giveaway

I'm giving away this one of a kind wall hanging. It is painted an antique white with a distressed finish. There are 2 oil-rubbed bronze hooks for hanging:
- coats
- aprons
- keys
- leashes
- cups...

It comes ready to hang and includes shipping price (U.S. and Canada only). See my Twitter page to enter - 30th retweet wins it!!/ShabbyNChic

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Cute and Easy Tutorial: Storage

I love this idea because it is easy, fast, inexpensive, uses items you probably already have and in the end you have more storage. What more can we want, right?!

- glass jar (with a circumference of less than 12 inches)
- scissors
- ruler or tape measure
- pencil or pen
- decorative paper (long enough to go around the jar once)

Really, that's it!!

Find decorative paper that you love. (This is my favorite part.)

Measure the height of the jar where you will be placing the paper. Then mark that measurement across the paper longways. 

Cut the paper across following your pre-measured marks.

Roll the paper enough to fit it in the jar and place it inside.

That's it! You have a pretty jar to store office supplies, craft supplies... 

Be creative. Use vintage paper, wallpaper, comics, kids' art work...

Friday, January 13, 2012

Hollywood Regency Decor

The new rage in home design is Hollywood Regency style. It really is what you would think from the name - stylish, over the top, dramatic design. Nothing plain and simple here.

Elements associated with Hollywood Regency:

Glitz and glitter and shiny surfaces like metallic finishes and glossy or lacquer-finish on furnishings.

Classic, yet glamorous designs.

Ornate details in light fixtures, furnishings and this checkered floor. I love this floor!

Fabrics in bold, but simple color and rich in texture.

Drama, don't forget the drama of Hollywood!

What do you think of Hollywood Regency style - love it, hate it or somewhere in between?

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Side Table - Before and After

I found this side table in great structural shape, but it needed beautifying. First, it was filthy so I cleaned it up. 

I liked the cream color, so I repainted it cream, but gave it a boost with a robin's egg blue for the drawer.

I love how it turned out!

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Featured Artisan: Toteally Bags on Etsy

I enjoy getting to know crafters and artisans and love to learn more about those who create something I really like. I spotted this bag on Etsy about a year ago and it has been in my list of favorites ever since. So I wanted to get to know the woman behind the bag. Here is my Q and A with Donna of Toteally Bags...

Q:  Tell me about what you make and how you got started.
A:  I have loved to sew since I was a little girl when I would make doll clothes and little gifts for people by hand. Then my mom got me a little "Sew Easy" toy sewing machine that sewed real stitches! I thought that was the best gift ever. I have since graduated to a real sewing machine, and I still love to make gifts for people. I started designing tote bags and diaper bags to give as gifts, and people kept asking me if I had any for sale, so now I do! I make mostly purses and totes, along with some fun things like sock monkeys and vintage-style aprons. 

Q:  I know you sell on Etsy at your shop Toteally Bags. Do you sell anywhere else?

A:  My bags can also be found in a shop called "Postcards From Delaware" in the Delaware Welcome Center on Highway 95 just outside of Wilmington, DE, where I am a featured "local artisan".

Q:  Of everything you make, what is your favorite?
A:  I think mother/daughter tote bag sets are my favorite thing to make. As a mom of two daughters, these sets are very close to my heart. I can just picture the moms and their little girls carrying their matching bags, and that makes me happy :)

Q:  What hobbies do you have? What else do you enjoy making?
A:  I am always working on some kind of project, whether it's sewing, home decorating, baking, scrapbooking, or anything else crafty. There are many, many projects in the back of my head just waiting for their turn to be created. So many projects, so little time! I love taking good ideas and making them even better, and I can often be heard saying, "I could totally make that!" (a comment that usually gets an eyeroll from my teenaged daughters). 

Q:  What do you find most challenging about selling online?

A:  The most challenging thing I have found about selling online is time management. I usually don't find the amount of time in the day that I want to dedicate to my Etsy shop. 

Q:  Any tips or ideas to help others who enjoy crafting?

A:  Another challenge I have is keeping my fabric organized. I work better if I can see what I have to work with, and I needed some way to store my many pieces of fabric in a way that was organized but visible. So, here's what I did: I took an old hutch that was in the attic from a previous homeowner and painted it white. I stacked it on top of a white dresser, and voila! A fabric storage unit, where I can fold and stack my fabrics, and organize them by color or type. This was the perfect solution for me, and could be done with any old bookcase or similar piece of furniture.

Visit Donna's shop at Toteally Bags or
like her on Facebook at 
and learn more about her on her blog at

Monday, December 19, 2011

Before and After: My Latest Projects


Very shabby candle holder pair that I thought would be cute in white... Really any color would be an improvement.

I think these would look great with a pair of the glass inserts for holding tea lights and votives.


Then I found this large candelabra and I had to have it. It had to go white. I like white for candelabras so that any color of candle can be used. I think it adds an elegance to it as well. 

It took several coats of primer and paint, but I am very happy with how it turned out!


Finally, for my Christmas "undo"; a recipe card holder. The gingerbread is cute, but he had to go - sorry.

Of course it went white and I had just gotten these vintage images and had to use one for this project. This little girl with the roses was perfect!

Thursday, December 15, 2011

My Favorite Things...

I haven't done a post of my favorite things in awhile, but I have been motivated by the time of year. It is the time of year for comfort foods! Here are some of my favorites...

I start every cold morning with a cup of hot tea and black tea is my favorite. I love tea so I'm not too picky about the flavor, but my favorite is definitely French Vanilla. I could drink it everyday and not get tired of it.

My favorite real meal comfort food is absolutely baked macaroni and cheese. It has become a favorite for just about everyone in my family. My brother-in-law now requests that I make it every Thanksgiving. My secret is using at least 3 different types of cheese to add a lot of flavor and vanilla almond or soy milk for a little sweetness.

Speaking of sweet, I have a major sweet tooth! Because of that, I have two sweet favorites. Who doesn't love marshmallows? I drove an hour to get some of these vegan marshmallows. I love the toasted coconut covered marshmallows. Really, I went just for the marshmallows...and they were worth it! 

Just last week I discovered my other favorite comfort sweet and it is chocolate, of course. I went to Trader Joe's and while waiting in line I spotted these dark chocolate peanut butter cups. I am really not a dark chocolate person, but my mom is so I bought them for a stocking stuffer for her. Well they sat on my kitchen counter for 2 days and it ended up being 2 days too long. It's like they were talking to me, "Come on, try me. It's okay, no one's looking." So I did. Shhh, don't tell my mother, but I have eaten almost all of them now. There is just something about the peanut butter and the dark chocolate doesn't have the flavor that is usually to strong for me. These are only $.99/bag! I can't wait to go back.

What's your favorite comfort food?