Thursday, July 31, 2014

Christmas in July sale!

Dearest readers, you've been so kind and supportive to me that I'm offering a Christmas in July sale for today only! Get 20% off everything in the shop, including Christmas cards, by entering CHRISTMASINJULY14 at check out in the shop.

Click here to be taken to the shop.

Happy July! NOT winter. We are so not there yet.

Pina colada cheesecake

I know what you're thinking. The House that Lars Built is confused. It's not a food blog. It's crafty! I know I know! Don't worry, it's just that these very important national holidays are dictating the editorial calendar around here. The whole month of sweltering July was National Ice Cream Month and July 30th, yesterday, was National Cheesecake day. We can't have it slip through out glue-gunned out fingers just because we are a DIY/craft blog, right? SO, ME Hammond of Baked by ME came up with THE MOST DELICIOUS cheesecake recipe you've ever tasted. You will never want to eat cheesecake in the round again. This deconstructed version will blow your tastebuds. I nearly downed the thing as we photographed it. This is one of those recipes where the baker, ME, says "it's soooo easy" but you really you can't trust her because it's that good. 

Get the recipe below

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

DIY room to room: Origami

Pineapple boat with sorbet

And to close off the season of sorbet, I present to you a pineapple boat. Kandyce came up with this fun idea. When she was little she would spend vacations in Palm Springs. At their favorite Japanese restaurant they were given a pineapple boat for their birthday chock full of ice cream and topped with loads of sugared accessories. She decided to make one for you in a slightly more healthy version. Just carve out the pineapple and add in the scoops and top it off with some of your favorite goodies.

And to recap, here are the sorbet flavors we shared from July's National Ice Cream Month.

 Pineapple sorbet with chamomile and lemon
 Kiwi Mint lime sorbet
all photography by Laura Sumrak
recipes by Kandyce Carroll of Ramblin Rose Cafe 
styling by Brittany Jepsen

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Pineapple sorbet with chamomile tea and lemon

Pineapple sorbet with chamomile tea and lemon recipe by Ramblin Rose Cafe for The House that Lars Built.
Pineapple sorbet with chamomile tea and lemon recipe by Ramblin Rose Cafe for The House that Lars Built.
Pineapple sorbet with chamomile tea and lemon recipe by Ramblin Rose Cafe for The House that Lars Built.

Pineapple with Chamomile tea and lemon juice 

Take out your violin because National ice cream month is coming to a close. But I have two more surprises for you friends one of them being this pineapple sorbet with chamomile tea and lemon juice, which is absolutely delicious.

Monday, July 28, 2014

Paper flowering in Vancouver!

Exciting news! I'm coming to Vancouver, Canada! I'll be teaching a paper flower wreath class at the new Poppytalk studios and I'm so so thrilled! Poppytalk has long been a favorite blog of mine and they recently came out with a line of products for Target with themes of florals so you know it's a good fit. They just announced their new workshop series and there are some goodies!

The workshop is on August 20 from 5-7 and you can purchase tickets here.

UPDATED: The class has sold out! We've added a second class on August 21 from 5-7. Purchase tickets here

I've never been to Vancouver or the Pacific Northwest for that matter...what should we see while we're there? 

Balloon arch tutorial

How to make a balloon arch
balloon arch tutorial
balloon arch tutorial
balloon arch tutorial
balloon arch tutorial
Ok, ok I hear you! You want the tutorial! I had every intention of getting the tutorial from the BHLDN Flamingo Pop shoot and Midsummer Mingle to you so much sooner than this, but I've been on GO ever since. But now, calm your fears, here it is. In all it's flamingo balloon goodness. I'm still perfecting the process (perfecting balloons?) but yes, turns out there is a learning curve to it as far as engineering goes.

The key to the success of creating a similar balloon arch is variety of balloon colors and variety of balloon sizes, which you can create with how much you blow it up. I tend to like color schemes that focus on three main colors. For the Bhldn shoot it was pink, mint, and white. I then supplemented it with shades of those colors. I added in some balloons that are clear, some with polka dots for a bit more whimsy. For A Midsummer Mingle I worked with Partyland here in Utah (though they ship!) and they exposed me to the EZ Twist balloon maker which allowed me to add in twisted balloons into the arch. I LOVE the effect they created and I think it would be rad for so many applications.
balloon arch tutorial
Materialsballoons in a variety of colors and sizes (I used Partyland and they have a great selection. The brand I used was Qualatex), EZ twist balloon maker (if you want to add in the curly long balloons), balloon pumps (they will save your lifeI used these ones)glue dots (I used these ones), clear shipping tape (I used this brand), lo-temp glue gun (like this one), chicken wire (depending on where you're positioning it), fishing line, gaffer tape (from a photographers shop), huge trash bags from Home Depot

The structure
Figure out what space you're trying to fill. For the BHLDN shoot I knew I wanted to attach the arch to the wall so I used chicken wire to create the more organic shape and attached it to the wall and ceiling with tons of gaffers tape (so it didn't ruin the paint) and fishing line that I attached to the ducts above. The pictures shown below are from the Midsummer shoot. I didn't do a full arch, but two poles that took the place of an arch because we had a huge banner above. If I wanted to do a true arch, I would consider buying this one for your event. 

The balloons will weigh down the chicken wire so make sure that the fishing line is taut. 

For Midsummer Mingle we created two poles to attach the balloons to. We got two buckets from Home Depot and added cement into them to create a sturdy base (see pics below).
balloon arch tutorial
balloon arch tutorial
The night before we had a major balloon blowing up session. I got enough pumps so we could get lots of help. I had never used a pump prior to this project but I tell you, I will never go back to blowing it up with my own lungs. Not worth it! We put all the balloons into the huge trash bags for storage and transportation. I wanted balloons in a variety of sizes so we did some as small as 3" up to the full size. 

Step 1: Start by applying on the largest balloons before you add on the smaller balloons. I mixed up the colors throughout the structure so they weren't clumped into the same space. We attached the balloons with clear shipping tape. Gaffer's tape worked well too. Just tape the end of the balloon. Do not be sparse with the amount of tape you use. I would even suggest taping it around the pole or chicken wire.
Step 2: Continue filling in the arch with your biggest balloons. It will not look great yet but keep on going! Make sure you're filling in all the holes and mixing the colors thoroughly.
Step 3: Once you've taped the big balloons onto your structure, now you'll begin by adhering balloons to balloons. We originally taped balloons to balloons with shipping tape but we found that they started to drop off due to heat. What I would suggest is to use glue dots instead. They are much more secure and work well on balloons. For extra security, you can even use a lo-temperature glue gun. However, in the heat, it will melt so Glue Dots are your best bet. Top off the balloons with more balloons and more balloons.
Step 3: If you're adding in twisty balloons, do those last.
Step 4: If you're adding in florals you simply need to tuck them in. There should be enough security with the chicken wire and balloons for them to not move. But, if they do need extra security, tie the flowers in with fishing line.
balloon arch tutorial
balloon arch tutorial
balloon arch tutorial
balloon arch tutorial
balloon arch tutorial
photography by Jessica Peterson (for the BHLDN shoot) 
photography by Natalie Norton (for the Midsummer shoot)
step photos by my iphone
creative direction and styling by Brittany Jepsen
balloons provided by Partyland for Midsummer
balloons provided by Zurchers for BHLDN
flowers by Ashley Beyer of Tinge for BHLDN
flower by Lizy Bowden of Lizy's Lilies for Midsummer 
lots of help from spectacular volunteers especially Carli Randolph and Teya Wiltise

Sunday, July 27, 2014

This week

This week there was a lot of pink and yummy ice creams going on around these parts--all my favorite things. I have some fun things in store for you this week. Are you ready to get your craft on?!

This week on Lars
Cantaloupe hibiscus sorbet. It will change your life.
Here's a free template to make this rad hanging lantern
I'm giving away a Craftsy class
If you like art and you like socks, you'll love these
Kiwi mint lime sorbet float. It's delish.
Handmake your picnic with these DIY projects
I want to paint either my walls pink or get a pink sofa. I can't decide!
This girl wears and swims in pink

Lars elsewhere
5 wedding backdrop ideas on Brooklyn Bride
Thinking of adding a screen to your home? Here are my faves. On Interior Collective
Watermelon print is everywhere right now! 
Lace can be a beautiful accent in a home
I love this combination in a home.

Links of note
I definitely do not have this problem. You?
I'm wondering if the world's "easiest project management tool" will be what I need to get organized? Perhaps you need a new system too? 
Really enjoyed listening to Joy Cho's keynote at Blogtacular in London. She works hard and paved the way for what a lot of blogger/designers do today. I could relate a lot! 
This week I attended a dinner party with Food Made By Tom. If you ever get the chance to go, do it! Or have him create the menu for your next dinner party! 

photo from my Instagram

Friday, July 25, 2014

This girl

Cantaloupe hibiscus sorbet

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Making a house a home in a rental: pink living room

Remember how I started a new column called Making a House a Home in a rental? Well, first I started out by defining my style and gave some tips on how to identify your own. Then recently I worked with Farrow and Ball on a paint makeover project. This whole time I've been wrestling with what I want to do with my living room. I have a MAJOR thing for pink right now (as do a lot of people. sigh.) I know pink produces the gag factor in a lot of people, but I'm not talking about that pop pink where it's paired with black and "princess" is written in Curlz. Pink, like nearly every color, when paired with the right colors can be gorgeous. For me, a dusty or blush pink paired with lots of greenery and botanical black with golds is the tops. Or a coral pink with emerald green. Gah! It's all about what you put with a color.

SO, I'm going pink. But the problem is, in what combo do I use pink in my living room? As far as I see it, I have a few options. First, paint the walls pink as seen above. These pictures make my heart race. I might die of so much gorgeousness.

Here are the pros to painting our living room pink
  • it's gorgeous
  • it's different
  • it goes well with greenery and flowers
  • #yolo
  • then we could get a more neutral sofa and the sofa will be in style longer?
  • devil on my shoulder
    Here are the cons to painting our living room pink:
    • We live in a basement that already doesn't get too much light. I'm afraid that the light we do get will cast a fun golden glow on it. Perhaps painting it white would reflect better and allow us for more light? Anyone have any experience with this?
    • Paul's opinion
    • what if we get a pink sofa (see below)? Will it be too much?
    • angel on my shoulder

    OR, do I go with a pink sofa instead. I say instead because I'm not sure I want to try a pink sofa against pink walls. What if I somehow get tired on pink and all of a sudden I have both pink walls AND a sofa? Eeek.

    The pros of a pink sofa:

    • Ummm, a pink sofa. 
    • So much fun.

    The cons of a pink sofa:

    • I haven't been able to find the right pink upholstery fabric. If I was in NYC, I'd head to the D&D and I'm sure I'd find it in no time flat. But I live in Utah and we don't have showrooms. If you have any tips on the perfect shade of pink, I'm all ears! I'm thinking more of a dusty pink like the image above, bottom left. I'm thinking velvet or possibly linen. Or maybe I need to take a trip to NYC.
    • $$$$. If I had endless amounts of money I wouldn't be so concerned with it, but I struggle with commitment because for us right now, this would be an investment. (Any sofa company or upholsterer or fabric company want to work with us on it? Sigh. High hopes.)
    OR, do I go pink walls AND a pink sofa? Of course, it helps when you live in a neoclassical, high-ceilinged house.

    Alternatively, I do love me some white walls. And then perhaps I would use it as a canvas for everything else.
    The pros of white walls:

    • clean & airy
    • acts as a canvas
    • reflects more light into our basement
    • I can still fill our space with lovely artwork
    The cons of white walls:
    • am I just being a chicken? Our landlord has said we can paint it however we'd like. Do we dare paint it rental white?
    • Will a pink sofa against white walls be enough of the statement I'm going for?
    Ultimately, I have a hard time deciding on things like this because of where we are at. We don't know how long we will stay here and I have a hard time thinking that I'm investing money into something that won't last long. Do you suffer from this? I know lots of people who make a home wherever they go no matter how long they are there for. That's not me. I've never invested money into any place I've lived. A lot of it is because I know I can't afford the things I really want and I don't want to fill it with just stuff in the mean time. I want the things around me to be meaningful, quality-made, and beautiful.

    Or do I just get over it and put up something in the mean time?


    Image credits:

    Wednesday, July 23, 2014

    DIY Room to room: picnic

    cooler makeover by Almost Makes Perfect
    no sew waterproof picnic blanket
    picnic basket liner DIY
    It's blazin hot here in Utah and the idea of a picnic isn't exactly refreshing, but in another land in another time I'm living in Denmark and when it's sunny you're outside with some cheese and sparkling water. And these DIYs help you do it with class.

    DIY water cooler makeover from Almost Makes Perfect (she nails it every time!)
    DIY no sew waterproof picnic blanket by Traveling Mama for A Subtle Reverly
    DIY picnic basket liner that I did for Design*Sponge a few years ago

    See more DIYs for the home here

    Kiwi mint lime sorbet float

    Tuesday, July 22, 2014

    Artist socks