Wrapped in Plastic, It's Fantastic

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Greetings from my dream home. I just wanted to wish you all a Happy Halloween!!!

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Couture Candy

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Don’t forget that Trick or Treating is coming up this weekend. Are you looking for candy to hand out to the fashionistas on your street ? How about these options:

Ring Pops (above)

Sweet Tart Rings

Candy Necklaces and Charm Bracelets



(All photos, with the exception of the wax lips were borrowed from Candy Warehouse)
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Twinkle, Twinkle

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

A signature Brandi move is to dot my i in my name with a star. This tradition goes back to about the age of five when I became upset with people spelling my name wrong, so I dotted the i with something special to make it stand out. Proof: In my pre-school graduation program, which my mom still has, there is a heart above my i.

In third grade, we needed to draw a picture of what we wanted to be when we grew up. Naturally I drew a television with “The Brandi* Show” on the screen. I wanted to be a talk show host.

The star stuck and I still dot my i’s with it today. In fact, it’s now tradition that I do that on my driver’s license (look close next time!).

I LOVE seeing stars all over home décor and fashion right now. One of my absolute faves are these mini-star sparklers from Kate’s Paperie. Aren’t these awesome for cakes and holidays?!

Star jewelry is a cute way to add sparkle to your ears. These Marc by Marc Jacobs earrings are at a reasonable price point.
And the Twinkle, Twinkle dress from Anthropologie and See by Chole dress with miniature stars.

Finally, I’m obsessing over star garland. I love these options from Pottery Barn Kids and these star balls that I fell head over heels for on our honeymoon in Cabo!

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Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Today the world lost another good pet. A pet with a good story. You see, about 15 years ago, my sister’s cat Yellza (named that because it yelled a lot) ran away.

Around that same time, J Bo’s friend Bill found a cat near my house that resembled Yellza, and adopted it. Bill found the cat near Burkett Elementrary School, so he creatively named the cat Bur Cat (get it…Burkett). Was it a twist of fate that Bill ended up with our cat? No one will really know, but it’s always sad when someone loses a pet. Bare with me – this story is going somewhere.

Today when I was browsing People.com, I learned that Taylor Swift is a fan of Cat Paint.

A downloadable app, Cat Paint is exactly what its name means. It paints cats on to your pictures. I was saddened that my un-Apple-self could not make some Cat Paint pictures, so you’ll have to look at these examples from T. Swift.

If you are a cool iPerson and download the app, share it with me!

This post is dedicated to all lost cats out there - dead or runaway. May you someday end up on Cat Paint.

(Sources and Photo Credits: Cat Paint and Taylor Swift)

P.S. - Y'all know I really censored myself on the title of this post ; ) Keepin' it clean on the blog.
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The Great Pumpkin

Friday, October 22, 2010

It’s the week before Halloween! So that means it’s time to carve pumpkins! I feel like so many people have been visiting pumpkin patches this year. Or maybe just all of the people I am friends with on Facebook. For many reasons (ah, um…primarily alcohol consumption), I am pretty bummed that I haven’t had a chance to go.

So if you plan to carve pumpkins this weekend, let me give you a few fashionable tips on this Fashion Friday.

For the designer snob, why not carve a logo into your pumpkin!? Just be prepared to back up this look with high-end candy! (Photos from Sweet Paul, Cakehead Loves Evil)

If you like sparkly things, go for glitter pumpkins! This involves glue and glitter – things that were banned from my household growing up due to my crazy projects! (Photos from Apartment Therapy and Caffeinated Creativity)

If you like to tie one on…ribbons that is, use fabric to jazz up your design. (Photos from Good Housekeeping and Holiday Crafts & Creations)

Finally, here’s a little extra photo for my Chi Omega’s that I’ll see this weekend. I give you owl pumpkins from Martha Stewart! (photo from TheiDesignBox)

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I Die. Obsessed.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Things I am obsessed about from the World Wide Web

• I know fall is upon us and the temps are dropping across the U.S. (well not for you in LaLa land, Dane), but I know here in Pittsburgh, I am already thinking spring. How cute are these Evian bottles with flowers designed by Issey Miyake? LOVE. Wouldn’t they be adorable to have on the tables of a spring shower?

Pittsburgh Steelers Nail Tattoos? Classy or Trashy?

• Hoot Hoot! Further extending the popularity of Owl décor, the Houston Chronicle predicts that owls will remain popular this year.

• I always laugh at my dad when he suggests a wedding in the local park shelter, but this wedding has me changing my opinion on that. I LOVE the laid back, casual-ness of this barn wedding in Arkansas photographed by Aaron Snow.

• These horse tights from Anthro totally satisfy my craving for cheesy clothes. Don’t worry – I won’t pair them with the dog dress.

(Images from The Dieline, Football Faniatics, Aaron Snow Photo, Anthro)
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They Call Me King Hov, copy?

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Temps are dropping, and I’m warming up by grooving to that sizzling new Usher and Jay-Z song Hot Tottie.

When I first heard this track, I immediately thought about the hot toddy cocktail. Could this be 2010’s Gin & Juice? Then I listened to the lyrics. You can pretty much tell they aren’t talking about a cocktail. So I did what any super white girl does when she isn’t sure of the latest slang. I turned to the Urban Dictionary.

Hot Toddy:
As made famous by the 2010 Usher song "Hot Toddy" featuring Jay-Z and Ester Dean, a "Hot Toddy" is a person with whom you conduct a sexual relationship under the implicit understanding that each participant may be maintaining a separate monogamous sexual relationship with another, all of whom who must remain unaware of this activity
Well, here on Thirsty Thursday, I wanted to salute the original Hot Toddy – which coincidentally features a ‘shot of brandy.’

Hot Toddy Recipe from Chow.com

1 ounce brandy or rum
1 ounce honey
1/2 lemon slice studded with 2 cloves
Cinnamon stick (optional)

Combine the brandy, honey, and lemon slice in a mug or punch cup, and add hot water to fill. Stir with a cinnamon stick, if desired.

(Sources: YouTube, UrbanDictionary.com and Chow.com)
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Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Raise your hand if you have a halloween costume?

No hands? Well I have some ideas!!

And for one of the most anticipated Shot of Brandi posts of the year, I give you my 2010 Halloween Costume Selections!

Let’s start out with the Internet Meme’s
· Antone Dodson: You’ll be raping everyone with this costume. One of the most popular meme’s of the year was the Atone Dodson interview (watch here and here if you haven’t see it), this is easy to pull off with a black tank top, bandana and wig. You can also pull it off by purchasing one of these shirts from zazzle. (image source)

· Double Rainbow: Another hilarious video that’s a bit better to watch after a few glasses of wine, there are two ways to pull off this meme. The first, from J Bo, would be to dress as Bear, the guy from the video, himself. The second, my silly way, would be to dress in all black with two carboard rainbows attached to yourself. Bonus points for using glitter!! You’ll have people asking “What does it mean?” (image source)

Pop Culture

· Stink Bug: They climbin in your windows and snatching your people up and I'm not talking about the rapist in Lincoln Park. I'm talkin STINK BUGS. This is an easy one. Wear all brown, brown wings and anteannas. (image source)

· Tiger’s Mistresses: Meow. Pull out your finest from that college pimp & hoe’s party and get a group of your gal pals to huddle around a male golfer wearing the iconic red shirt and black pants. (image source)
· Lindsey Lohan: While I typically shy away from the norm costumes, Lindsey could be fun to pull off. This basically gives you a get-out-of-jail free card (pun intended) to get really, really drunk. Bonus points for wearing a faux SCRAM bracelet. (image source)

· Tea Partiers: This one came to me the other day and it could be pretty funny. Just make radical protest signs and drink a lot of sweet tea vodka! (image source)
TV & Movies

· Glee: Two good ideas here – Cheerios and Sue Sylvester. The Cheerios cheerleader outfit may be a little tough to make authentic, but Sue should be easy. Just get together your best ADIDAS track suit. (image source)
· Boardwalk Empire: Pull out your flapper gear and gangster suits! The flapper costume has been making a big comback and with all the ruffle and fridge dresses at H&M I recommend skipping the costume store on this one! Guys - rent a suit. (image source)

My last peice of Halloween advice - If you’re gonna go GaGa, Michael Jackson, Jersey Shore, Brittney Spears or any of the usual suspects, go FULL Gaga, MJ, Britt Britt, etc. Don’t half ass it.

P.S. - my costume isn't up here, but a stink bug was in the top three : )
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Virtual Magazine Rack

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

My name is Brandi and I am addicted to reading magazines. I’ve always been a reader, but lately I haven’t had time for books, so my vice is blogs and magazines. While I fully support printed media, I must say I recently had a realization – reading magazines and blogs online is so much easier. You can digitally save recipes, photos and ideas rather than ripping out pages and saving ideas in notebooks. Not only is it environmentally-friendly, it’s a huge space saver.

With companies cutting back on print advertising, more magazine editors are losing their jobs and magazines are cutting space. I know this isn’t new news, but what is new is what these editors are up to. Potentially the future of media, these former magazine editors are starting online magazines.

Here are a few of my favorite magazines. You’ll notice a few things: there are more pages, some link directly to sites where you can buy the product featured and there are cool ads!

I encourage you to try it out! Read some online magazines and see what you think!

Lonny: From some of the editors of the best-short-lived-magazine ever, Domino, comes Lonny. Filled with adorable everyday items and home décor, this online book is filled with drool-worthy ideas and pictures.

Lonny also has a delicious blog.

Rue: Created by two fabulous bloggers, Anne Sage and Crystal Gentilello, this online magazine has some of the most amazing, talented contributors and most of all photographers. Check out the shoot in the first issue with the crafters behind luxury headband designers, band.do.

Anthology: A quarterly magazine focusing on home décor, travel, design, entertaining and culture – YES please! How appealing is the cover illustration?! Too cute!
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Monday, October 11, 2010

So you’ve heard of Bring Your Own Beer, Bring Your Own Bottle, but Bring Your Own Meat?

While on a search for the end of the internet, I stumbled upon this invitation for a Bring Your Own Meat party. Wouldn’t this be an awesome party to throw to christen a new grill!?

That got me thinking…what other kind of BYO parties could you throw?
Cereal: Maybe for a kid’s or adult slumber party? I recommend mixing Cinnamon Toast Crunch with some Lucky Charm Marshmallows and Chocolate Rice Krispies for a little smore’s combo.
Cheese: Great for a BYOB of Wine party.
Pasta: Perfect for those that like noodles, shells or rigatoni!
• Wrapping Paper: During Christmas, invite your friends over for a wrapping party. This can be done if you don't have a lot of big boxes or gifts. OR if your friends need to secreatly wrap presents from family members!
Cookie Cutter: Add this to the wrapping paper party – get your baking done at the same time.

(Sources: The Design Cubicle via Niki Brown – Photo from Niki Brown)
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Bling for your Bum

Sunday, October 10, 2010

As I was strolling through my Google Reader, I practically fell out of my lame, black office chair when I saw…

A sequin covered chair.

This royal thrown was used at the 2010 Engage! Conference and I spotted it on the world’s best wedding blog, Style Me Pretty.

Immediately I began searching the internet for a place to purchase and/or rent this chair. While I couldn’t find the exact one in the photo, I found a few fancy options for guests fannies.

1. From Floral Art LA (this site is to die for), I give you, in all its glitter goodness, the sequin chair!!!! Inside the clear, Lucite frame lies spectacular silver sequins.
2. This chair will be mine, oh yes, one day it will be mine. Floral Art LA has just about any floral chair, like this fuchsia peony floret. I mean doesn’t this just take garden parties to a whole new level? The back and arms are made from Lucite – the clear, plastic looking material that’s all the rage in rental chairs!
Wouldn’t this be PERFECT for a totally girly birthday dinner, bachelorette party or shower?
If sequin chairs aren’t in your budget (certainly not mine!!), then there are sequin chair covers out there. The one pictured above is from Wildflower Linen.
And speaking of Wildflower Linens. Please look at their gorg chair cover designs!!!! I mean the ruffles, rosettes and sparkle! I could have included almost every chair from their site!
Editors Note: Chair covers were not allowed at the Smithkowski wedding as a request by the bride’s father. In his words “I hate those damn chair covers.”
(Images from Style Me Pretty, Floral Art LA, Wildflower Linens)
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POPping Bottles

Thursday, October 07, 2010

Art is something I’ve always gravitated towards. While I sometimes have a hard time understanding crazy gallery displays, I tend to dabble in my own creations. Let’s just say I’m known for taking on some ambitious art projects.

Since “I’m from Pittsburgh” (that’s for you Brian), I’ve always had an interest in Andy Warhol’s work. I think it’s a combination of the photographs, fashion and bright colors.

So you can imagine my overwhelming excitement when I saw these new bottles of Dom Perignon inspired by Andy Warhol.

Based on a journal entry from 1981 (in fact, 10 days after my birth), Warhol said…

"a club of twenty guys who got together and they're going to buy 2,000 bottles of Dom Pérignon which they will put in a sealed room until the year 2,000 and then open it up and drink it and so the running joke is who will be around and who won't..."
Dom Perignon will release limited edition Andy Warhol-inspired beginning October 15th. While the $150 price tag is a bit steep, think of it as an awesome conversation piece for your bar and a cool bottle to break out during a celebration. Maybe after painting a room!?

(Photo & Quote from Dom Perignon)
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On a Roll

Wednesday, October 06, 2010

Ask the folks at the Chicago CVS on State and Division about my obsession with tape. They probably thought I was running some sort of meth lab with tape fumes or like keeping someone hostage taped to the wall. I'd probably buy a roll or two a visit. For realz – I use a lot of tape.

So of course I became naturally became obsessed when I saw Rebecca Ward’s work. This fab artist creates crazy, vivid illustrations and displays with colorful tape.
My favorite of her displays was located in the Kate Spade store in SoHo. I mean how crazy good is Rebecca at lining up the tape perfectly!

This just sends my head spinning with potential party decor using tape!

(photo source: Rebecca Ward)
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Bra Bra Bra Brahh Brahhh

Tuesday, October 05, 2010

In October, a lot of attention is placed on boobs. Everywhere you look, things, places and people turn pink. So I thought that I would draw some attention to the breasts today with a little bra feature.

Gone were the days when a bra’s sole function was to hold up your boobies. Welcome multifunctional over-the-shoulder boulder holders.

· Bra Wallet: While I think “Brallet” we would be a better name, this little device keeps your money and ID warm in your cleve. I wonder if it will store my cell phone too?

· Wine Rack: Yes, the pun was intended. My most favorite multi-purpose bra is the wine rack. You place your favorite drink of choice into the pouch over your books and voila – you just snuck a bottle of wine into a football game. This bra could put the secret into Victoria’s Secret.

And possibly the strangest bra yet…I give you the Bra Mask. The winner of last year’s Nobel Peace Prize in Public Health (I cannot make this up) won the award for a bra that doubles as a gas mask.

Victoria's Secret should have totally came up with these ideas in a special "Secret" section.
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