sneak peek: farm sweets

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A few weeks ago I shared in a blog post (with a storyboard) that we are expanding my “on the farm” birthday party collection. I’m very excited to announce that we shot all of the new printables for a farmers market dessert table, as well as several other items yesterday including these fabulous melt in your mouth butter cookies from Sweet Tooth Cottage.

I’ve hinted before that all of my designs will be available in cookie form soon. That day is drawing closer and we have a big announcement planned, but until then if you have interest in the candy corn (blog post showing cookies), harvest (blog post showing cookies) or this new farm collection, e-mail us at customercare@celebrationshoppe.com and we’ll share more details including pricing.

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And I had to throw this little guy into the sneak peek too. I’m a southern girl (originally from Alabama, but I’ve lived in Mississippi, Texas and Tennessee too; finally settling in Ohio), so I loved adding the “y’all” touch! {wink}

Happy Friday everyone and much more on this collection and others next week!

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real parties: scientist part II

science-is-cool

As I mentioned in the part I scientist party post, my son loves science (I mean check out that face!) and he spends a lot of time reading (or having me read) science books. So when it came time to pick experiments he already had some ideas about what he wanted to do. I did have to remind him that we would have to have supplies times 10, so in the end we compromised. We chose three experiments for the kids and a grand finale.

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But before we get into the experiments, let me set the stage by giving you a tour of our laboratory. The kid’s were greeted at the gate by a “Scan to Enter” sign that my son felt was a must, especially since this is a top secret area!

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As they rounded the corner, the pergola was labeled with a large LAB banner,

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and nestled underneath were two long tables covered in green tablecloths and topped with all the supplies needed to complete our experiments.

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Each child’s experiment station was anchored by a sheet of solid orange scrapbook cardstock with an experiment card to the left and topped with a placecard from our new science birthday party supplies collection.

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Here’s a better look at the placecard tied to a test tube filled with candies!

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But before the kids could enter, they had to gear up with monogrammed lab coats (available through our partner at Sew Jewell). Alex wanted his to have this cute little worm performing an experiment on his pocket, as well as the bubbling test tubes coming out of the pocket, like all of his guests.

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The kids also received goggles embellished with the collection’s “Thanks for bubbling over!” favor tags.

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Now on to the experiments. First I have to tell you that one of the best decisions I made while planning this party was to recruit two of my best girlfriends, Tammy and Maura. Maura is a fabulous blogger at 36×37 (and not just because she wrote about me; her perception of me is heavily clouded by our friendship!) and a corporate editor and Tammy is an entrepreneur and a TEACHER. That’s right, I pulled out the big guns!

I organized the lab into two tables, big kids (5-6 year olds plus little brother) and little kids (3-4 year olds). Maura took on helping to keep the little ones focused while Tammy taught the big kids. That’s right, I said taught. She totally wowed me. She came prepared with a little lesson for each experiment: primary colors, weather and buoyancy. She kept them completely engaged the entire time and it was obvious that the kids were really enjoying themselves. Not only did I have a professional actually teaching the kids something, I was able to sit back with the other parents and enjoy watching the little light bulbs go off over their heads. It was wonderful! (Thank you ladies both again!)

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For the first experiment, the primary color test, we set up six cups (short clear plastic cups, $2.50 for 40 from Kroger) per child, three empty and three filled 1/3 way with water. Then we dropped three fizzing tablets (100 tablets for $4.99 from http://www.stevespanglerscience.com/), red/blue/yellow, into the water. Next we had the children mix the colors into the empty cups to make orange, green and purple. Finally we let them pour in a small amount of oil so they could see how the water and oil won’t mix.

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For the second experiment, a weather experiment, we placed a scoop of insta-snow in large test tubes and let the kids mix the contents with water. The snow grows so fast that it pops out the top. Tammy explained how real snow was formed and then let them add the water and watch the magic. The product is Insta-snow and it is perfectly safe for kids to handle. (Insta-snow was $4.95 and the test tubes were $5.95 for six with a rack, both from www.stevespanglerscience.com)

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For third experiment, Alex’s favorite, we chose buoyancy (upward force that allows large objects to float). For each child we set up:

  • bowls filled half way with water (Rubbermaid bowls from the dollar store, 2 for $1),
  • two equal size pieces of aluminum (roll for $1 from the Dollar Store), and
  • 20 paper clips (pkg of 200 for $1 from the Dollar Store).

The kids put 10 paperclips on one piece of aluminum foil, balled it up and dropped it in. It sank. Then they folded the edges of the second piece of aluminum foil to make a small boat. They floated it on the top of the water and added 10 paperclips (one at a time or slowly). The lesson teaches that with more surface area the same weighted objects can float, just like large ships do on the sea.

And for the grand finale, a Mentos and Diet Coke geyser which was set off by my husband Steve while the rest of us stood far away! The reaction is instant and our geyser was about 20 feet in the air. (Mentos geyser tube from http://www.stevespanglerscience.com/ for $4.95). The kids loved it, but unfortunately I didn’t get a great picture of it because of all the commotion!

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As I outlined in the part I post, I’ll share all the crafts, as well as our feature in Columbus Parent Magazine (now up!) shortly. Plus all of these items will be in the shoppe along with the invitations shortly. Thanks everyone for the lovely comments on the part I post too. I appreciate all the encouraging and sweet words more than you know!

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real parties: scientist part I

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My son Alex has been in love with science for almost two years now. When we go to the library each week he heads directly to the science section with a basket… and comes back dragging it. I’ve read him books on astronomy, plant life, electricity, and probably hundreds on animals… although I could have skipped some of the worm and spider ones {skin crawling}. Not my faves!

So when it came time to create a new birthday party collection (science party invitations, science thank you notes, printable science party supplies) for his sixth birthday, there was really no question as to what the theme would be. He wanted bubbling beakers, colorful test tubes and the wardrobe piece that every scientist must have, a lab coat (purchase from our partners at Sew Jewell)!

We took so many pictures that I’m going to break it into a few posts so it doesn’t crash your computer {wink}:

My little guy really wants his own lab. And since it’s going to be top secret I can’t share all the detailed plans with you… and I promise you, there ARE drawings, but I can tell you that it requires you scan your hand to enter. I mean we can’t just let any old riff raff in, right?! So with this in mind our guests were greeted with signs directing them to our backyard and requesting they scan their right hand to enter. I’ll share the signs with you in the craft post, part III.

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In our backyard, under the pergola, we created our lab, complete with experiments, test tubes, lab coats and of course goggles. I’ll share all the details of the lab and the experiments in the science experiment post, part II, but I can’t resist sharing one more picture of my little scientist now! He was so happy. I got tons of “I love you Mom” whispers. It was truly a perfect day!

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While the parents watched on, and some helped out with the younger scientists {thanks you guys!}, they sipped yummy H2O,

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or soda, labeled appropriately “Warning: May Bubble, Pop & Fizz!”

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And after the kids poured, mixed and tested all the experiments we took them inside to a “experiment station” aka an ice cream bar where they could test toppings including M&Ms, Snickers, peanut butter chips and even gummy worms, until their little hearts were content.

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Not only did we serve ice cream, but of course cupcakes,

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and more cupcakes…

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and cookies! These beautiful hand iced butter cookies are from Sue at Sweet Tooth Cottage (and will be available in the shoppe the week of Oct. 11). The bubbling beakers were my favorite and I even sent them for his class party,

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bagged with our cello toppers.

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As for the dessert table,

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there was a choice of three ice cream flavors,

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tons of yummy toppings (M&Ms have been my favorite since childhood… can’t resist them!),

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and several serving options including waffle cones displayed in these springy shaved ice stands.

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I flanked both sides of the cookie tier with white shelves filled with science related items including paper mache books (the table pic above was taken before all the props were out) that I painted and embellished with “Biology,” “Astronomy” and “Chemistry.” I’ll show those to you in the craft post too.

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And to fun it up a bit more, I hung large 3-D (separated by foam adhesive squares) beakers from the ceiling above the dessert table. There are three shapes in the collection. The green and blue above

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and this orange one. Hope you’re enjoying so far, here’s a link to my new science birthday party supplies in the shoppe (science party invitations, science thank you notes, printable science party supplies) and more to come later tonight!

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spooked pumpkin 25% off!

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The new spooked pumpkin printables collection is finally in the shoppe and just in time for us to offer it at 25% off all this week! The entire collection offers:

  • two witch faces (one each frowning and smiling),
  • two witch hats,
  • two cupcake wrappers,
  • the “Try one if you dare…” tag,
  • the  “Have a sweet, my pretty!” tag,
  • a mayhem muffins mat, and
  • the spooked pumpkin cello topper

all for $11.25 this week!

Hop over and check out fun pictures of the entire collection in our sneak peek post or head on into the shoppe for 25% off this collection and discounts on several other Halloween items. Happy Monday everyone!

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harvest collection, part II

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Now that dessert tables are all the rage, brought on by the talented Amy Atlas, all of our new collections offer dessert table tags, coordinating pattern mats and sometimes frame mattes with clever sayings. For the Harvest collection there are two styles of dessert tags: the pumpkin (above) and the scarecrow (below). (See what you missed in the part I post!)

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These tags are also adorable as placecards, especially when tied to a yummy caramel apple and embellished with ribbon!

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And in addition to our scarecrow cupcake pick and wrapper,

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 this collection also offers lovely pumpkin picks and wrappers in a perfect fall palette.

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Here’s a closer look at those yummy butter cookies hand decorated by Sue of Sweet Tooth Cottage.

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She also printed our designs on sugar paper and made these

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and these. I love the plaid! (See the mat underneath the cookie. It comes with the printable collection, as does the blue gingham!)

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And you can’t forget the favors. Our cellos for this collection are the perfect palette for fall candy. We used M&Ms and Reeces Cups, both a perfect match!

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We also have pumpkin favor tags. I attached them to lollipop sticks, embellished them with ribbon and speared a caramel and chocolate drizzle apple. But you could just as easily tie them to a goody bag, or insert them in a pail of goodies. The possibilities are truly endless with a little imagination!

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And round out your table with our napkin rings (both the pumpkin and scarecrow designs available) plus

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our pennant banner showcasing our adorable little scarecrow for the final touch.

As always, I hope you’re inspired!

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sneak peek: farm printables

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We’ve been burning the candle at both ends lately and here’s a peek at one more thing that we’re working on. My “on the farm” collection is one of my favorites so I thought we would enhance the offering a bit. Right now you can get all the table decor, custom invitation, thank you, napkin rings, cupcake picks, cupcake wrappers and favor tags in the shoppe.

And soon you’ll be able to set up a farmers market with our new dessert table mats (Farmers Market with pricing, lemonade 5 cents and olde fashioned stick candy), dessert tags (pre-filled and blank), beverage wrappers labeled Moo! Milk and Well Water {loud giggles}, straw slips in six designs, cello toppers with “Thanks for moseying by, y’all!,” red and yellow gingham mats and an adorable flag banner with three animals and red/yellow gingham patterns.

The photo shoot is scheduled for the week of October 4 and all items will be in the shoppe shortly thereafter. If you’re interested in learning more about these fun items now, e-mail us at customercare@celebrationshoppe.com and we’ll gladly help you get them early!

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sneak peek: science collection

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I’ve mentioned on facebook that we’re creating a new science birthday party collection for my oldest son’s sixth birthday party in a few weeks. Here’s a little peek at the invite, which is already available in the shoppe, and just a few of the printables that will be available soon. From left to right: favor tag, placecard, banner (one of two), beverage wrapper (one of two) and straw slip (one of six). 

I also have some very exciting news to share about this collection, which I’m officially not allowed to talk about yet. But I know how much everyone loves suspense so I thought I would throw it out there. {sneaky giggle}

I’ll share more details as the party gets closer and if you’re interested in the printables before they’re available in the shoppe, just shoot us an e-mail at customercare@celebrationshoppe.com.

As always, I hope you’re inspired!

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spooky Halloween printables

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In the past few weeks we’ve announced our new Candy Corn Halloween collection, full of trick-or-treating ghosts and screech owls, and showed you glimpses of our new Harvest collection, with a colorful scarecrow and pumpkin that will be perfect for a fall festival or even to decorate the kid’s Thanksgiving table. This morning I want to share our spookier side with some new printables we created to complement our Spooked Pumpkin and Martinis & Mayhem collections.

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Meet the sinister sisters. They are totally up to no good! But with a pumpkin spice cupcake topped with cream cheese icing my boys and a few wanders by can testify that they taste super yummy! {wink}  You’ll notice that these are not your typical cupcake picks. I wanted to do something a little different so we created the head and the hat separately to give the sisters a real 3-D effect when you use a adhesive square to attach the hat. (There are four designs. Two purple/orange witches, one smiling and one frowning, and two green/black witches doing the same.) I really, really love these!

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In addition to the witches, we also created these coordinating tags “Try one if you dare…” and

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“Have a sweet, my pretty!” {witch cackling}

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We also created this hilarious mat that would be perfect on your treat table next to uniced cupcakes for the kids to decorate themselves. 

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Or next to the sisters! Doesn’t the little pumpkin look afraid of her?! Eeekkkk!

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And here are the two green/black sisters together. Like my crow? Well you’re lucky to be seeing him. I had a few things stashed for the shoot and my little ones decided to have a mini-war with the crows. Needless to say, there were casualties…

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And here’s the purple/orange sister with the “Have a sweet, my pretty!” as a cupcake pick.

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Last, but not least, here’s our cello topper. These would be perfect for pre-packaged little favors for party guests or even trick-or-treaters. I’ll be filling mine with gummy worms as those are one of my youngest son’s favorites!

All these will be added to the Spooked Pumpkin and Martinis & Mayhem collections the week of Sept. 13. And as always, I hope you’re inspired!

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sneak peek: harvest collection

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As those who stop in often know, we’ve been working hard over the past few weeks to bring you some exciting new Halloween collections and ideas. Well, a spooky twist is still to come and I can’t wait to show you (update: Spooked Pumpkin Collection printables)! But in the meantime, I just had to share a sneak peek of our new Harvest collection. It’s really somewhat of a sister to our semi-sophisticated Candy Corn collection, but for this one we wanted to leave off the scary and just focus on the beautiful season.

This collection will be perfect for those who love pumpkin patches, apple orchards, kettle corn and hayrides. And it could even be perfect to help you decorate the kid’s table at Thanksgiving this year. I know that I’ve decided I will personally be using it!

The invitation is in the shoppe now and the photo shoot of the new orange and white polka dot table decor and printables will take place next week. Much to come everyone!

And as always, I hope you’re inspired!

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introducing “candy corn”

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We’ve been working on our new Candy Corn Halloween collection for weeks (along with several others) and sharing little peeks here and there. Well, I’m finally ready to show it all off! Just in case you didn’t see the peeks of the invitation and the cupcakes, here they are again.

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I started this project at the fabric store. I’m a huge fan of coordinating patterns, without all the matchy matchy. I selected a diamond pattern for the background and a polka dot for the table. You’ve not seen it yet, but the invitation back carries this same diamond pattern and if you look closely you’ll see a faint polka dot pattern on the front of the invitation along with a filigree pattern along the borders. Our inspiration for this collection was the desire to host a Halloween bash that is fun for the kids, but with a few semi-sophisticated elements for the adults. And since dessert tables are all the rage, we of course created one we thought was just boo-tiful. 

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We created dessert labels starring our little owl and offer them both pre-filled and blank so you can choose your own spooky treats. For the candy corn shown above, I picked up shallow round bowls and embellished them with candy corn ribbon. (The kids loved swinging by during the shoot to grab a piece or two!)

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And since my youngest has terrible food allergies, we just had to have gummy worms.

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To further bring the dessert table to life we created a flag banner using candy corn patterns, stripes and our ghost and owl designs.

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But I couldn’t leave it there. Nope! I loved the little ghost so much that we created a large one (available in the shoppe too) to hang over the dessert table. I used four of them!

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We also created cello toppers, and

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“thanks for dropping in” favor tags for the collection. I love the idea of using these to give the neighbor kids something special on Halloween night this year!

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Here’s a closer look at just the tag. (If you like the spider, you’ve got to see our Boo collection.)

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And you can’t have a complete dessert table without the beverages. We chose Stewart’s old fashioned soda drinks because they were the perfect orange to match our decor. Plus, the hubby loves them!

So you’ve seen a few glimpses of some fabulous cookies. Let me tell you, they are not only beautiful but they are the best butter cookies I’ve ever eaten. The very talented Sue at Sweet Tooth Cottage is the sugar artist behind these. I gave her my designs and she not only printed some on sugar paper and embellished them wtih these super fun dots, but she also made, yes made, cookie cutters to fit my designs and then hand iced each cookie. She’s not shipping cookies just yet, but I’m working on her! More to come on that, but until then, here are a few more shots of her lovely creations.

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 I have to point out that I made the holes in these cookies for the ribbon post-bake. Meaning these cookies were soft enough for a straw to go through them after they were iced. I swear they will melt in your mouth!

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Here’s a look at the ghost cookies. You already know how partial I am to him!

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And here’s a look at the sugar paper cookies. I love the cutouts, but I have to say there is something about seeing my designs on a cookie like this! And for those of you who are wondering about sugar paper, everyone at the shoot thought they were just as yummy as the cutouts.

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I have lots more pictures to share tomorrow of all the crafts (cake plate, witch hat, Halloween masks, dish towel child apron, crepe covered vase) we made for the shoot, but I thought I would leave you with the lollipops (above) and the kids having a blast telling knock knock jokes while they waited for us (below). As for the lollipops, I’m always looking for unique ways to use our printables, so I whipped up these lollipops with strips of crepe paper, double sided tape and our cupcake pick rounds. They were a huge hit and so very simple.

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Hop over to the shoppe to see all the details for this collection and more! More crafty details from the shoot to come tomorrow!

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