Saturday, August 9, 2014

Noah's Train Birthday Party

My teeny tiny newborn baby boy turned THREE....in February. I was editing pictures of our Disneyland trip earlier this week and I scrolled past February and was reminded that I have yet to share his really fun Locomotive Party (or Noelle's Frozen party in June).

Six months ago Noah was really into trains. Actually anything with wheels, but since he already had a race car party, we decided on a train theme. Today the train, plane, and car toys are stuffed in an ottoman in the playroom and have been replaced with all things Star Wars. All. Things. I hear the Imperial March a billion times a day. Along with, "Where's the blue storm trooper?" and "Mommy, I'm Hans Solo and you're Padme Amidala."

Rewind back to February and we had a happy little conductor at his train party. Here are some of the details.

My super handy dad whipped up this railroad crossing sign with some extra wood from the shop. It's a legit railroad sign. Like, I could put it up on a road and people would look around for tracks.
Chalkboard sign and luggage from Hobby Lobby.

 photo Noahturns3-10.jpg

The big attraction at his party was this fun "train" made out of barrels and dollies. We borrowed it from a local church (my dad plays in a church softball league and has all the connections). I added "Noah Express" and "Choo Choo" to the train to personalize it a bit.

 photo Noahturns3-8.jpg


CHOO CHOO! The kids LOVED the train rides around the neighborhood.
 photo Noahturns3-9.jpg

The train was pulled by an electric golf cart, driven by Conductor Grandpa.
 photo Noahturns3-14.jpg

The FOOD! The was the first time I used a chocolate fountain and everyone really enjoyed it. For dipping I served massive strawberries, rice krispy treats, and marshmallows.  I stuck with red, white and blue (and bandana print) for the color scheme and used the train image as much as I could. It was even on Noah's shirt for the party!

 photo Noahturns3-3.jpg

I spotted this red tub at Home Goods and couldn't pass it up. Actually, I did pass it up and then sent Aaron back into the store to get it! It's been a useful purchase. For the other beverages I used Noah's changing table which I donated a couple weeks later.

 photo Noahturns3-15.jpg


Drink Station - Along with water and Dr. Pepper (the essentials), there was Cherry Limeade and juice boxes for the kiddos in cute little muslin bags. The printer transfer paper was really easy to use. I just made the design, printed it out, and ironed the design on.
"N" from Hobby Lobby.

 photo Noahturns3-11.jpg

I'm a sign maker, so of course I had to paint a few signs for the party.
Platters, locomotive, lantern and basket from Hobby Lobby.

 photo Noahturns3-5.jpg

One of my favorite elements in creating a party is the centerpieces. These cost less than 10 bucks to make. The pail and #3 were purchased at Michael's and the plant was $3 at Lowe's. The bandana was $1 at Walmart and brings the theme together on each table. The bandana on the dessert table (scroll back up) is actually a scarf from Forever 21!

 photo Noahturns3-6.jpg

Inside I usually display the kids' birth announcements and birthday invitations. I also like to out the favors on this table.
 photo Noahturns3-19.jpg

Favors: Animal cookies with a train whistle and conductor hat (Oriental Trading Co).
 photo Noahturns3-16.jpg

Talk about easy game preparation: galvanized bucket + balls = coal toss.

 photo Noahturns3-7.jpg

My brother-in-law always takes amazing pictures of the kids for their birthday. These are my favorite shots.
 photo 2Z0A2646.jpg

Down the road from our house a purple-haired lady has this caboose on the side of her yard. Her family was very kind to allow us on her property but we quickly learned that they had a few screws loose. We were there for a quick 20 minute shoot.

 photo 2Z0A2602.jpg

Noah John had a blast at his party. He talked about it for weeks! Until his dad introduced him to Star Wars.
 photo Noahturns3-12.jpg

I suppose I should start planning his 4th birthday party now.... May the Force be with you.
-Amanda

 photo 2Z0A2612.jpg




Friday, July 25, 2014

Amanda G Designs - Custom Orders Part II

Our little Etsy shop passed 1,000 sales! It's thrilling to be able to create pieces for couples to enjoy in their homes for many, many years. I honestly thought it would be stressful making guest books for weddings but I've been blessed to work with incredibly thoughtful and creative brides (and some grooms, mother-in-laws, and maid of honors).

Brides typically have an idea in mind for the design which makes them especially easy to work with. My job is to take their vision and make it a reality. Here are some custom pieces that we at Amanda G Designs have created so far this year.

For a peek into the shop and more pictures of unique signs follow @amandagdesigns on Instagram.

This recent sign combines rustic and lace. It turned out great and I love all of the details.

Lace Wood Sign photo July15-4.jpg


Tara and I probably set a record for the longest Etsy conversations I've had with a customer. We narrowed her package down to three signs: a guest book, direction sign, and a ring-bearer sign. They complimented each other perfectly.

Wood Sign Package photo blog.jpg


April and Brandon requested a Texas Star on their "guest book."

Texas Star photo blog-2.jpg


The Fayeds love their Boston Terrier and asked if I'd paint one on their "guest book." As a dog-lover myself, I thought it was an amazing idea and the sign turned out great!

Boston Terrier photo bostonterrier.jpg


This "wine glass stain" sign was a custom order for a vineyard wedding. It's also a popular new design available in the shop.

Wine Stain photo June30-2.jpg


I've been wanting to paint a horse-themed sign for some time now and I finally was asked to paint a horseshoe for a UK couple who are getting married at a barn in Texas.

Horseshoe sign photo July10-3.jpg


The "double state" design is another popular choice and can be customized in so many ways.
Two States wood sign photo June30-3.jpg


Two States photo July4-2.jpg


A sweet hibiscus flower is a lovely choice for a tropical destination wedding.
Hibiscus Flower photo 14-7.jpg


We named this design "two hearts become one."
Dark Wood Sign photo 7-2.jpg


Jerome's wife contacted me for a birthday guest book sign for her husband's 40th birthday. She said it was a hit at the party!

Birthday Wood Sign photo 15th-9.jpg


I was honored to paint a few signs for my friend Jarod's wedding to his beautiful wife, Amy. I ended up making a guest book, ring bearer sign, welcome sign and a couple of direction signs.

Steele's Wood Sign photo jarod.jpg


It makes my day when I check my messages and receive a picture from a couple of their sign hanging in their home. It's great to see the guest books complete with signatures.

Steele's Guest Book photo 23.jpg


The welcome sign.

Wedding Welcome Sign photo 25-3.jpg


Happily Ever After Starts Here direction sign. It fit in great at the barn.
Direction Sign Happily Ever After photo 25.jpg


I'm looking forward to painting many more custom designs! Please let me know if I can help you create the perfect guest book for your wedding at Amanda G Designs on Etsy.

Amanda


Monday, January 13, 2014

2013 In Review - Custom Orders {Amanda G Designs}

I was very blessed in 2013 and filled hundreds of orders through my Etsy shop, Amanda G Designs where I sell hand painted wood signs. Many of my favorite signs were unique custom orders. Several of them were a real challenge, but I enjoyed the process of getting to the finished product. Here is a round up of some custom orders in 2013.

This huge and very heavy sign was a fun project that was requested by my brother-in-law.

A previous customer ordered two more signs for her living room.
Live a Life worthy of the calling you have received.  Eph. 4:1
 photo untitled-1040.jpg

He is before all things. And in Him all things hold together. Col 1:17
 photo untitled-1028.jpg

This mama sure has her hands full. I love the two signs she ordered.

Let them be Little

A family name sign is one that can be treasured for a lifetime.


Warren contacted me with a vision for a 5 year anniversary gift for his wife. Since the traditional 5 year gift is wood, he asked me to paint the South Carolina flag emblem with their names and wedding date on five boards. What a sweet guy - I'm sure he scored some major points with this gift.

 photo untitled-1078.jpg

This bride had a design in mind for her guest seating sign.
Today as two families become one We ask that you please choose a seat not a side.
 photo untitled-1019-2.jpg

Custom state signs are very popular in the shop right now. This Tennessee sign for Luke and Julie was first state sign I made, followed by many others.

Texas
 photo untitled-1003-8.jpg

California
 photo untitled-1075-2.jpg

This Oregon sign was probably one the the most unique signs I painted in 2013. Nissa & Megan sent me a picture of the White Stag sign and asked if I could recreate it for their guest book. 

 photo untitled-1026-3.jpg

I love when customers think outside the box and ask about custom orders. These signs were created using the couple's wedding invitation as inspiration. 
At Last
 photo untitled-1013.jpg

Love Birds 
 photo untitled-1006-3.jpg

Laurel wreath designs.
1.
 photo untitled-1025-2.jpg

2.

Pale pink heart and brown monogram.

This sign was ordered as a gift for the couple by a relative. It was a challenge but I love how it turned out.

I've also had the pleasure of making themed guest books. 
Paul and Tim had a rustic wedding.
 photo untitled-1073.jpg

David and Ally's wedding was at a vineyard.
Grape vine sign photo untitled-1036.jpg

I also started making custom arrow signs! These signs are adorable and can match any guest book order.

You can find a couple of the signs and much more in my shop. Let me know if I can make something special for your home or wedding. 
-Amanda