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“The Best Way To Spread Christmas Cheer Is Singing Loud For All To Hear”! Now one of our holiday traditions is to watch “ELF” the movie about 30 times! This year I wanted to have a little fun with this tradition so the girls and I decided to invite a few friends over for movie night. I found the perfect stamps over at Rubber Stamps to help us with the party invites. We decided to go with a red, white and green color theme. These invites were not only easy to make but let you know the theme of the party once you look at it. I purchased the green pre made cards and envelopes from Michaels. Once they arrived the rest was pretty simple. The size of the stamp fit perfectly to the envelope, Rubber Stamps have so many options to choose from. I absolutely LOVE all the available options! I decided to go with a burgundy red for the ink and stamped the saying on the top center of the cards and the cutest mitten stamp on the bottom right hand corner of the envelopes. To complete the look, I added a red and white stitched ribbon to the bottom of the card. Now these could also make for great holiday cards for neighbors, teacher gifts and friends. Once we mailed out our cards we were ready to sit in our pjs with popcorn and enjoy a great evening of laughs, singing and Christmas cheer for all to hear!








Begin by grabbing your stamps and applying ample ink to each one. Make sure you press down on your stamps firmly. I made sure to center my stamp to the card and used the mitten stamp kinda angled on the bottom right hand corner.

At this point you can cut your ribbon to fit the size of the card. You will want to make sure you leave a little extra room to wrap around on both sides of the card.

You will want to use double sided tape to adhere your ribbon to your card.

Now you have an adorable custom invite and are ready for the party to begin!




What is your favorite part of the “ELF” movie?


During the Holiday season I like to change things up around the house and make things feel festive down to the candles and soaps. These DIY Ornament Soaps are not only easy to make but are an adorable addition to any bath. Your guest not only will get the cute factor with these, but they will get a few to take home as gifts! The best part, the options on these are endless. I went with a light turquiose since we have a coastal feel in our guest bath. I wanted them to resemble a glass ornament. As you can see I went with a clear turquoise base color and a white solid base as these little ornaments had various designs on the top. I love how you can see right through them. Could you imagine these in a red or pink color combo? I’m obsessed. The fragrance oil I went with makes you feel like you’re in a resort in the middle of the winter season. I LOVE how these turned out!






  • Hibiscus Mango Fragrance Oils – Michaels
  • Spray Bottle with Rubbing Alcohol
  • Ornament Mold – Michaels
  • Clear Glycerin Soap – Hobby Lobby
  • Goats Milk Soap – Hobby Lobby
  • Turquoise Colorants – Michaels
  • Soap Colorants – Hobby Lobby
  • Glass Measuring Cup
  • Mixing Bowls
  • Spoons
  • Knife




Begin by cutting a 2 1/2 x 1 1/2 piece of clear soap into small cubes in a measuring cup. Microwave the clear soap for 20-30 seconds until melted.

Add a drop or two of your turquoise colorant and stir until mixed. You will have to work quickly at this point. With a spoon fill each mold cavity part way with your mixture making sure you leave enough room for your second base color. Spritz with rubbing alcohol to remove any air bubbles.

Once your first layer has harden you will want to cut a 2 1/2 x 1 1/2 piece of the white soap base. Cut small pieces and place them in your measuring cup to melt. Microwave for 20-30 seconds until melted. Add a drop or two of your fragrance oil and stir until mixed. With a spoon fill each mold cavity to the top. Spritz with rubbing alcohol to remove any air bubbles.

At this point let your soaps harden for at least an hour and remove from your mold.

Now you are ready to impress all your guest with your mini soap ornaments!





What kind of soap fragrances are your favorite?


I wanted to talk a little bit about invites and cards. I LOVE a great invite, don’t you?! I’m not sure if some of you knew that before I started blogging I ran a full time photography/graphic design studio. So as  a professional photographer running a full time studio is one of the things I made sure to research carefully and look at were invites. I made sure that not only did our customers have unlimited options but quality, customer service, various designs, turn around time and samples were key. Especially when you are working with families and brides trying to coordinate colors and making sure every last detail is perfect. One of the many things I love about Basic Invite is the ability for you to select your design and change the color of each element on the card to over 180 different color options. Talk about getting your card down to the littlest detail.


Around this time a year we are in need of holiday party invitations, office Christmas party invitations and your personal deluxe holiday cards. You also have the option to choose from over 40 different color envelopes to make a statement before they even take a peek inside. Now we all remember licking all those holiday card envelopes, YUCK! No need to do that here because all their envelopes are peel and stick and can be quickly sealed closed. You had me at peel and stick! LOL


When I met with my clients to go over the sessions we would talk about wardrobe options, locations and overall feel for the shoot. My clients would always receive a gallery to view their images before sitting down to make their final selection. So why not have the option to order custom samples. With Basic Invite you have the ability to order a printed sample of your actual card. No guessing here whether you’re going to like the colors and/or paper quality. This feature by far makes it worth ordering all my invites and cards as samples.


Once, me and my mom decided to do our holiday cards together. Ok, at the time this seemed like a great idea! I love my mom don’t get me wrong, but the woman had like 500 people on her mailing list. No joke guys, seriously. We had to either write each address on the envelopes or type them into the computer and lay it all out to print out the labels. Sometimes they worked and sometimes not. This is where the feature offered by Basic Invite would have been so helpful. They offer an address capturing service and offer address printing at no cost to you on all Christmas card orders.


Make sure you head on over and take a look at all the amazing options they have available and these are just to name a few. Right now they are also offering 30% with coupon code: holi30. What are some of your favorite holiday cards?

This post is in partnership with Basic Invite and all opinions are my own. Thank you for supporting the brands that help keep Design & Unwind running.


I wanted to put together a wrapping party. A small get together to enjoy laughs, drinks, chocolates, wrapping gifts and making hang tags. Naturally, I had to make it fun! The idea came to me to call it “Really… It’s all about the gifts!”. Because you know when it really comes down to it, we all love to look at all the pretty paper, embellishments and toppers. I have been known to wait to open my gifts right away because I absolutely love the toppers and gift wrap and would just rather keep those! LOL

First, I enlisted the help of my friends over at Rubber Stamps to create my custom stamp. Not only was I able to create my own stamp file and send it over but the process and customer service was next to none. They had multiple size options and a variety of pre-made stamps available for me to choose from and  just about every occasion. What is better than that you ask, that if you do not find what you are looking for they can make it for you. They also carry self-inking and pre-inked stamps including embossers which I can’t wait to get my hangs on. I plan to make a few custom stamps for my family and friends as gifts this year.

Now for my color theme I decided to go with pink, red and silver. I wanted a festive feel but sometimes I like to use regular wrapping paper and accent with holiday embellishments. I was thrilled at how it all turned out.







Begin by choosing and downloading your hang tag designs.

Once you have made your selection you will want to measure and lay out your hang tags. I wanted a variety of shapes and sizes.

At this point you will send your hang tags to cu using your Silhouette.

Now you can start by grabbing your stamps and making sure you press down on your stamps and apply ample ink to each one.

Then you stamp your designs onto your hang tags and you are ready to start gifting.

The stamps were sharp and clear and I just love how they turned out!





What is your favorite part of gift wrapping?