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DIY Pumpkin Spice Soap

October 24, 2014

Hey everyone!

I put together another DIY today that is, bar none, the easiest project you could take on this season.  Only requiring a few ingredients, this Pumpkin Spice Bar Soap is simple, festive and smells so yummy!  Anything that makes my house smell like pumpkin is “A-OK” in my book.

The base of the pumpkin soap can be found at almost any crafting store.  I found mine at Michaels, in a 2lb solid block.

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 I decided to use a milky glycerin soap base.  The other option is translucent if you prefer.

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One of the easiest parts about this is the measurements are not specific.  You can eyeball everything!

I had three soap molds, so I guestimated how much soap to use, cut it into cubes, and placed them in a microwave safe container.

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You can start off by microwaving the soap for 30 seconds.

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After that you will want to microwave for an additional 20 seconds at a time, until the soap is entirely liquified.  Stir between heating.

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Once the soap is liquid, start adding soap coloring to the mixture.  I’d specifically use soap coloring over food coloring as I imagine food coloring could dye your skin, and we definitely don’t want that!

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Since we’re making pumpkin soap, the desired color is orange.  Start with a few drops of red coloring…

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…a few drops of yellow…

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…and mix, mix, MIX!

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You can adjust the color even more by adding additional coloring, but start off with less.  You can alway add more, but you can’t subtract.

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Next add a 1/2 tsp of pumpkin pie spice at a time until you get the desired scent and color that you want.

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REMEMBER: The more you add the darker that soap.

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Once your mixture is to your liking, lay out your soap molds.  I also found these at Michaels.

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Fill the molds to the brim…

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And allow to sit for 45 minutes, or until the soap has solidified.

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Once solid, gently remove the soap from the molds.

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The result of your labor will be several scrumptious smelling bars of Pumpkin Spice Bar Soap!

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You can take it a step further by packaging the soap to make the most perfect gift!

Tools

Let this be your time to be super creative!

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I used a ruler and razor blade to cut up even strips of this great textured paper.

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I layered those strips with this gorgeous lace I found in the ribbon section of Michaels…

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…and topped that off with an orange bow.

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Couldn’t be happier with the end result!

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I hope you enjoyed this post and the end product as much as I did.  It really couldn’t have been easier to pull off and I highly recommend trying it for yourself.  Who needs a pumpkin spice latte when you can bathe in one, right? haha

Until next time.
xo, Rachel

Beauty, Fashion

Wish List & Outfit Inspiration

October 21, 2014

I had a little free time this evening. I thought I would share with you some items that are on my wish list + and outfit idea I came up with on Polyvore. I recently did a video about how I create outfits on Polyvore. I generally make collages with clothes that I already own, but sometimes I will create dream outfits, and try to recreate it with what I already own.

Here’s an example.

The weather is starting to cool down, but it’s not too cold yet. I just thought this outfit was so versatile. It feels like something I can wear for many occasions; both casual and a bit more dressed up.

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Jean Jacket: Rag &Bone | Dress: Intermix |Quilted Handbag: Rebecca Minkoff |Sunglasses: Tory Burch

Lipstick: Nars

 

I have to admit, working at Nordstrom and Sephora as a freelance specialist/vendor for so many years made me a bit particular about makeup/skincare. Brands like Nars have become my weakness. Don’t get me wrong, if I find a drugstore item that kicks butt, I will cherish it forever.  I just always feel so beautiful when I wear Nars makeup. The product sits so well on my skin, and I always return as a customer both happy and satisfied. I recently got the Nars ITA brush and the Nars Albatross Highlighter and they are both amazing products. The highlighter makes me look like I just had a fresh facial, and LOVE it. The brush sheds a bit, but overall it gives the most beautiful bronze contour. It’s the PERFECT contour brush.

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Here are a few items I’ve sorta had my eye on. I probably won’t try Tom Ford until I’m completely out of both Bronzer and highlighter which will be a whiiiile. I do love that eyeshadow color from Nars though. Maybe I will ask for that in my Christmas stocking. I’ve also had my eye on that brush for years now, but I  still can’t decide if it’s worth it. Anyone tried these products?

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Nars Ita Brush Nars Albatross | Nars Himalia EyeShadow | Tom Ford Bronzer and Highlighter | Nars Yachiyo Brush

P.S. Don’t get me wrong.. I don’t NEED any of these things..  This is just a fun post sharing some beautiful products I’ve been eyeing lately. What products are on your wish list?

hope you’re having an awesome day.. or night.. =)

xo, Rachel

Family

My Best Friends Baby Shower

October 19, 2014

My friend Hannah and I have been friends since we met in the pre-school at our church. We became best friends in the 3rd grade and remained friends till now. She really knows me, and has been a loyal friend to me for many years. I was SO excited to shower her with excitement and love for the arrival of her baby girl. 

We had discussed exactly what she envisioned for her shower. She expressed that she wanted a VERY neutral, co-ed, yet festive shower. Since it’s October, we decided to go with white pumpkins, and white hydrangeas for the center pieces. We painted Mason Jars with gold paint, and wrapped thin rope around the top. I loved how these turned out.

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She also expressed that she did NOT want to play games. She wanted it to have a more “get together” casual party type feel. She liked the idea of guests writing funny messages on the bottom of diapers for those late night diaper changes. This was optional. Guests could choose to participate or not. We didn’t announce this, we just left the chalkboard out with instructions. We had lots of funny diapers by the end of the night.


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We had iced tea, a keg of root beer & a hot chocolate bar with all the fixings for custom hot chocolate.

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We decided on warm chili and sliders for the food. Since this shower was co-ed, Hannah’s husband had a say also. He really preferred this menu option. Byron made the food, and it was all fantastic.

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 I made a three layered cake with edible gold sprinkles.. I had to decorate the sprinkles with Oliver in my arms, so I couldn’t get it perfect.. I still really loved it though.. This was a yellow cake with cream cheese frosting.

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                          Hannah was holding Oliver so I could take some pictures.

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Hope you enjoyed this post.

xo, Rachel

Fashion, Home

Taking Proper Care of your Clothes 101

October 17, 2014

Hey everyone!

I bring it up all the time, fashion can be an INVESTMENT, and with every investment comes proper maintenance.  It is so important that we are taking care of our clothes, ESPECIALLY the pieces that we spend a little more on; as those are the pieces we usually want to get the most use out of!

Check out my newest video and see some additional helpful tips below.

Hope you enjoy this post! <3

Clothing Care Tips!

  • Don’t over wash your clothes. Washing doesn’t only cleanse the item, but often fades color and removes structure. Items worn carefully and lightly can often be made fresh again by simply airing them out.

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  • Denim lasts forever between washes. Denim is super durable and easy to spot clean, but can lose its shape drastically with each wash. With that in mind, try freshening your denim with a nice steam in the dryer, or even hang them over your shower rod for a natural steam.
  • Organize your laundry.  When it is time to do laundry, carefully read the tags on your clothes and divide accordingly. Not only lights with lights and darks with darks, but cool dry with cool dry and gentle rinse cycle with gentle rinse cycle items. The more attention you pay, the longer your clothes will stay looking like new!
  • Use a mesh bag for washing delicates. Put delicates inside it before washing to prevent them from catching on the washer and other garments.
  • If something shrinks in the wash, keep it damp and stretch. Often times, damp items can be gently stretched back to shape. After gently stretching the damp and shrunken item with your hands, try wearing it while it dries so it reshapes to your body.  This is especially useful for fashion emergency situations!
  • Avoid the dryer! It is better for you, the environment, and your CLOTHES if you air dry.  Dryers not only rapidly dry your clothes, they rapidly wear down your clothes also.  Do yourself  and your electricity bill a favor and air dry the pieces you want to last. Most pieces can be dried in the sun, but take care to see which clothes need a cool dry  (i.e swimsuits or more sensitive fabrics.)
  • NEVER use the dryer on your bras.  This will seriously damage the structure and support intended; as will improper storage.
  • Keep bras organized and folded properly to maintain the cups. Fold padded bras in half with the straps tucked under the cups. This helps them keep their shape.
  • If you must use the dryer, always clean the lint trap after every load, and use the most gentle setting.
  • When your clothes are done drying, hang or fold them as soon as you remove them from the heat (sun or dryer). The change in temperature (from warm to cool) will lock in the current state of the clothes, hence why you want them in the most optimal position to not wrinkle. Hanging them is ideal.
  • Don’t over crowd your closet! Cramming clothes together, not only wrinkles, but wears down sensitive fabrics. Recently I minimized clutter by giving into those velvet (space saving) hangers I see everywhere. You can find these for a reasonable price point at HomeGoods.

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  • Fold clothes along the seems, to avoid unwanted creases and to maintain the shape of the item.
  • Avoid wrinkles, by using a handheld steamer!  This is my must have when getting ready for an event or shoot. Handheld steamers will save your outfit every time, and will leave your clothes fresh and wrinkle free.

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  • Always clean seasonal clothes prior to storing. If you ever plan on storing your clothes, know that bugs like dirt, and strong scents like perfum and smoke.  To avoid a breach in your seasonal gear, clean them before you store them.
  • Lastly, treat and maintain your leather items.  Leather tends to be the hardest hitting on our finances, so caring for your leather clothes and accessories should be an investment from the start. Pretreat your items with some type of water resistant formulas.  Water can often bring out the worst in leather. Also, be sure to condition your leather to cleanse and maintain this valuable material.

Be sure to always read your tags for additional guidelines.

Hope you enjoyed this post!
Until next time.
xo, Rachel

Beauty

♥ Get Un-Ready With Me (Skin & Hair Routine) ♥

October 13, 2014

Alternatives:
This is pretty much my skincare routine every night when I get home and “un-ready.”
Hope you enjoy the video. =)
xo, Rachel