Digital Design Love


Char-Wedding-Invite-backPhotographer: Brittany Reece

UPDATE 11/22/2015: I’ve been super busy working on a new exciting Dear Beautiful You products store! More about it coming soon along with a new website design!

I’ve never shared my love for digital design here on the blog, but would like to do that today! Life has been changing in very big ways in the last 6 months and my designing has become a big focus. In the past 7 years I have been designing announcements and invitations for my close friends and family such as my sweet cousin’s wedding announcement above. Arn’t they adorable?! This type of designing has progressed into website design (my first website was this blog!) but that is a discussion for a different day. My love for designing all started with not being able to find the perfect announcement for my wedding day 7 years ago. This resulted in me thinking I could just design and print my own. Genius right?? Now that I look back at my invitation, featured below… try not to laugh at it, let’s just say that my designing skills have come a very very long way.  It is a slightly embarrassing wedding announcement now that I look back, but this was an important key and the first step to my study and love for digital design. I had and still have a long way to go and a lot to learn.


Lately, I’ve been looking into the different options I have to share my design style with the world without the hassle of customer service, printing, shipping etc. and came across the company Minted. Their designs caught my eye, especially their “Save the Date Collection” I wish I would have had a darling save the date card for my wedding like these! Such creative, professional, fun & unique designs! So I started to research how I could get my design work on Minted’s website. I found out that they hold design competitions for people like me to submit their work to. The winner’s designs are then sold on their site. This ensures that they only sell top of the line professional designs. I LOVE the idea and and am always up for a little friendly competition. Some of the features that drew me to this company over others was the unique design elements that I could never get with my own designs. Here are some of the unique elements they offer below:

 SILHOUETTE SHAPES – I love these cutout shapes 100% more than the traditional 5×7 cardsavethedatecutoutFOIL-PRESSED ELEMENT – Such a beautiful addition! savethedatefoilMINIBOOKS – These are my favorite! So adorable and fun. It would be fun to design one of these in the future…savethedateminibookIn the meantime, life has brought on so many new things such as moving from California to Boise, Idaho for my husbands new job and the latest being our newest bundle of joy, miss Elsie May! I will be entering’s Birth Announcement Competition with my “dream birth announcement” design for Elsie. This way I can design something with the fun new elements that I’ve never been able to use before. I’ll let you all know when I do so you can go vote for your favorite designs! Now just for fun, I’ll share just a couple of my favorite past design projects with you.

2013 FAMILY CHRISTMAS CARD/BABY ANNOUNCEMENT: (yes…our babies are only 14 months apart)newfront



Sierra-Wedding-InvitationbackPhotographer: Trish Gilmore

I look forward to sharing more of my design work with you here on the blog and possibly being able to offer my work to you in the future. Merry Christmas! ♥Christina

No-Sew Curtain Tutorial

pic14Carter’s room is coming along…slower than expected, but it’s comin’! I thought I would share my no-sew curtain project I did. I am in love with the material I used from the Online Fabric Store. It is exactly what I was looking for to start pulling his room all together. Beautiful and high quality fabric.  And yes, I have officially jumped onto the no-sew wagon and LOVE it! These curtains took me about 2 hours from start to finish. They would have taken me 2+ days if I tried to sew them. 
pic1Supplies Needed:
-Curtain Fabric, I used: Premier Prints Air Traffic & Premier Prints Zippy Black Denton
-Iron & Ironing board
-Iron on adhesive, I used:Heat’n Bond Ultra Hold Iron-On Adhesive
-Curtain Rods
Note: The wooden panel cover at the top of my curtains was already there from the past renters, I just recovered it with fabric. It is solid wood and screwed straight into the ceiling.
pic2Step 1: Cut your fabric for 2 curtain panels (I kept the width of the fabric and just cut the length from curtains out of Ella’s room. I like the look of floor to ceiling curtains)
pic3Step 2: There are different types of Iron-On adhesive. There are some that are for hemming which do not have a paper side, but I decided to use this type: Heat’n Bond Ultra Hold Iron-On Adhesive so I did not have to do any pinning 🙂 Place your adhesive paper side up along both edges of your fabric and the bottom. Mine was perfectly straight because I used the width that the fabric already came. Iron the adhesive onto the fabric. Do not touch your iron to the sticky part, just the paper side. Follow the instructions on your particular adhesive. pic4Step 3: Pull the paper backing off and you will see that a clear strip is left attached to your fabric. pic5Step 4: Fold the edge of the material over to the inner edge of the adhesive and iron. If you follow the edge of the adhesive as you fold,  your hem will be perfectly straight…which means no pinning 🙂 My directions said to iron for 8 seconds. Depending on the thickness of your fabric. Just keep checking and making sure it is holding together. pic6pic7pic8Step 5: Now it is time to do the top of your curtains. I just created a hole for the curtain rod to slide through. After experimenting, I suggest making the “hole” larger than the fold you see above ( I just doubled the size of the adhesive). I would do a hem 3-5 times larger than the adhesive width. This leaves the curtains hanging better and less pressure on the adhesive holding the curtains up. Place your adhesive the same way you would in steps 1-3, but instead of folding it right over onto the edge, fold it farther over (3-5 times larger than the adhesive width, you will want to determine this before you cut your fabric). Now Iron just as you would in Step 4. pic12Step 6: Hang your curtains and enjoy! Note: I did not make the top cover that you see with the airplane fabric, but I do know that it is solid wood and there is a solid piece of wood on the top that attaches right to the ceiling. Inside there are hooks that hold the curtain rods. I used a staple gun to cover it with the airplane fabric. pic11pic10Becky and I have some exciting news coming soon…part of the reason we haven’t been blogging for awhile:-) Can’t wait to share it with you! Stay tuned… ♥Christina

Handwritten Message Wall Art

photo9I was inspired by a $400 piece of Pottery Barn handwritten wall art the other day and decided that it would be pretty simple to get this same look for free with items I had on hand. I wanted to make 2 different pieces that went together. I happened to find 2 wooden blocks that were the same size sitting out in our shed, but you could use any type and shape of wood and still get this look.
photo2Supplies Needed:
-Wood ( I used 1 1/2 inch thick square blocks)
-2 paint colors, you can use acrylic ( I used Annie Sloane Antionette Chalk Paint so it would match Ella’s room)
-Large paintbrush & small paintbrush to “write” with
-fine to medium grit sand paper or sanding block
-hardware to hang your art if you want it to go on a wall (I used hooks off the back of an old picture frame)
photo3Directions: Paint 2 coats onto your wooden blocks of your base paint color and allow to completely dry. The Pottery Barn art has a base coat of white and black lettering. I went with a pink base and white lettering. Practice writing with a small paintbrush on paper or wood until you get the look you want and feel comfortable writing with a paintbrush. As you can see, perfection is not required.
photo1Now you are ready to go for it! Start writing whatever phrase you would like to have. I like the way “I love you” looks. If you really mess up, no worries…you can lightly sand off the area you don’t like, but wait until it is dry.photo4photo5After the words have dried take a sanding block and lightly sand over the words to give them an uneven grungy look. This will “fix” any mistakes you made and smooths out any paint globs to make it look like a “printed” flat finish. If you sand too much, you can go back and repaint over the spots that need and and repeat the sanding process again. I also sanded the edges of the wooden block to give it a distressed look.photo6photo8This was a very budget friendly, easy and beautiful project to add to Ella’s room decor. I love that I created my own personal art in the form of a messages to my daughter. It makes it way more special and something she can see everyday. So now I want to put personal love notes though out my house as art. In case you are wondering, the other block says “Dear Beautiful, True beauty is kind…it shines from within…You are truly Beautiful” I will have photos of it once I finish the display wall in her room. Have a wonderful day ♥Christina