Introducing Claremont Collection

You may have noticed that I’ve been a bit quiet over the last few weeks, and my blog posts have not been as frequent as usual. Well, I promise that I have a very good excuse for being otherwise preoccupied lately.

Wondering what it is?

Today, my colleagues and I are extremely proud to announce the launch of Claremont Collection, a line of delightfully distinctive letterpress wedding stationery from Curious & Company!

Claremont Collection has been my baby since partnering with the other four designers who make up Curious & Company, and I’m so thrilled with what we have created. We currently offer ten designs, each customizable with any of our 25 ink colors, three paper colors, and twelve envelope colors. Each letterpress suite comes complete with your choice of invitations, save the dates, response sets, celebration cards, detail cards, menus, thank you cards, escort/place cards, and favor tags.

The designs are available exclusively through our website, and nowhere else — that means when you place an order, yours truly will be seeing it through from design to completion! We offer samples of each letterpress invitation design, as well as each of our 25 ink colors printed on all three of our paper colors — so there is no guessing what your final design may look like in person.

I hope you love the collection and will share it with all of your soon-to-be-wed friends. If you feel so inclined, please do head over to our website to check out the designs!

cold beers + a touch of nostalgia

Over the weekend I celebrated the big 3-0 with some family and a few close friends down the shore. Since I’m a glutton for DIY and I love any excuse to break out my Gocco, I decided to put together some little party favors for the lovely folks who made the trek to the Jersey shore to party with me.

A few weeks ago I came up with the idea of screen printing some can coozies for my guests, since adult beverages would surely be making an appearance over the weekend. I found several websites that sold blank can coozies, but the only site I came across that allows you to mix and match colors without a minimum purchase was BlankKoozies.com. At 99 cents each, I ordered a mix of navy, teal, and fuchsia coozies (my order was shipped the same day), and created a design that was similar to my email invitiation. Using my Gocco and silver ink, I printed the design and fell in love with the sweet results.

I decided not to stop there when I found a little store in town that had a great selection of candy that brought me back to my childhood. I mean, what better way to celebrate turning 30 than with candy cigarettes, Pop Rocks, and candy buttons?? I also threw in some salt water taffy for good measure.

When I printed the can coozies, I had remembered that there was a package of brown paper lunch bags in our kitchen, so I decided to make use of the Gocco screen while I already had it inked up and I printed my design on the bags. They ended up being the perfect finishing touch — I put all of the goodies inside the bags and they looked incredibly adorable awaiting the arrival of my guests.

The coozies (and the candy) were a big hit! I had fun putting everything together and I’m glad that the goodies added a little something to the festivities. ‘Twas a great weekend!

thirty.

I’m taking the rest of the week off from blogging to slow down a little bit, relax and celebrate. Have a nice weekend :)

birthday smooch from my brother, 1983

let’s get together {yeah, yeah, yeah…}

I’ve never been to summer camp, but I always imagined it being just like the camp where Sharon and Susan (Haley Mills and Haley Mills) came face-to-face and discovered that they were long-lost twins in The Parent Trap.

I think it’s safe to say that this was one of my first favorite movies as a kid… I can still recite just about every line, and “Let’s Get Together” gets stuck in my head at least once a month. I completely wore out the VHS tape (which was a recording from The Disney Channel). I think it is also where my love of retro dresses and bathing suits began.

Check out this cute guide to living in The Parent Trap on Design*Sponge. And now, if you’ll excuse me, I have to go scare away some mountain lions.

images via Design*Sponge

30 is around the bend…

I’m going to be 30 in less than a month (eek!) and I decided that I want to celebrate by relaxing at my mom’s house down the shore with some family and a few of my very closest friends. I’m used to my birthday being a busy time of year when most people take vacations, so I wanted to plan a casual gathering where people can come and go as they please throughout the weekend.

Of course, I’m a bad birthday girl and this wasn’t a plan I came up with very far in advance… so when it came to inviting my small circle of peeps, email was the fastest and easiest way to get the word out. I know, I know — I’m a poor excuse for a paper-obsessed girl! I do always prefer printed invitations, but I simply didn’t have the time to break out the Gocco and still get the word out in time; email does the trick when it’s a bit more last-minute. Besides, email doesn’t have to mean boring — here’s the design I whipped up.

A little nautical and a lot “me,” no? I created the design in Adobe Illustrator and saved as a .gif file to email out. I’m glad it added a festive vibe to an otherwise small, casual, open-house type of gathering. I’m looking forward to it!

What do you usually do to celebrate your birthday? Have you had any great milestone birthday celebrations? Tell me about it!

Special thanks to my sis’-in-law Kim for her lovely words about my invitation… and me :)

quintessential summer beer

I’m a beer girl. In the last few years I’ve also acquired the taste for wine, but I will always love a cold beer on a hot summer day. My absolute favorite summer beer? Buffalo Bill’s Orange Blossom Cream Ale.

image source

It’s not a super “beer-y” beer (if that makes any sense). It’s sweet and light, but not overly, sickeningly fruity or sweet like some fruit beers… just delightfully refreshing and perfect for summer. We can’t always find it while out and about, so it’s a treat when we do find it. Otherwise, you can find me sipping on a Hoegaarden, a Sam Adams Summer Ale, an Iron Hill Light Lager, or a Blue Moon Belgian White in the dog days of summer.

Do you prefer beer or wine? What’s your favorite summer drink?

welcome to the new Claremont Road

Hello, friends! Thanks for joining me at my new internet home, claremontroad.com. I hope you like it here!

Big huge mega thanks go to my friend and business partner, Chris, for bringing my design to blog-life and working through all of my crazy (control-freakish) requests. I owe him a giant chicken cheese steak for all of his work. (Seriously, that’s how I’m repaying him. If only all vendors were so easy to please…)

Have a look around and please let me know what you think and, most importantly, if you find any problems or glitches. It’s a work in progress, so your constructive feedback is immensely helpful to make sure everything is running smoothly for my readers. I still need to go back into the archives and fix some of the video links and a few little quirks, so I appreciate your patience while I work through those items.

Thanks again for visiting! Y’all come back now, ya hear? (And don’t forget to subscribe if you haven’t already done so! Just click that little RSS button at the top of the sidebar, and you’re on your way.)

number 48: in which I check my inhibitions at the door (er, beach)

I did it. Number 48 on my list. I bared my pale, soft belly for everyone to see on a New Jersey beach.

Do I feel totally rid of every insecurity and inhibition I’ve ever had about my body? Of course not. Did I still catch myself covering/hiding my belly a few times? Sure. But did it feel pretty good to say “screw it” and put on my cute green bikini that I haven’t worn since our honeymoon (where we didn’t know anyone, and I was 8 pounds lighter)?

Yes.

I’ll be 30 in just over a month. I haven’t had a flat tummy… ever. I have always carried those few extra pounds right around my middle. Even on our honeymoon, at my thinnest, I was still self-conscious about my belly. I haven’t really lost weight recently, though I feel noticeably healthier since I’ve been working out more often. (Prime example: it was too hot to run outside while we were away, so I did a little Shred-ding with Jillian one morning — and it felt totally easy!).

On vacation last week with my family, I looked around on the beach one day and thought, I am nowhere near being the most fit person on this beach, but I am also far from being the least fit person on this beach. Women and men of all shapes and sizes were comfortable enough in their skin to wear whatever bathing suit their little hearts desired, and I didn’t judge them for it. So why have I been judging myself so harshly?

I originally added number 48 to my list as a motivator to lose weight, like this fabulous lady did. And I still do hope to lose a few pounds, and be a little less shy to wear a two-piece someday, without feeling the need to suck in a little… but if I wait for perfection to don a bikini, I’ll be waiting forever.

So, I did it. And it felt kind of good, imperfections and all.