ViolentsHey, friends! Hope your weekend is going well. 

I wanted to share a couple of exciting updates regarding my husband's music! First up, there's a new song out. You can listen to it here. It's the first one called "Unraveling". This is one of my top 3 favorite songs from the new record (I actually can't pick a favorite, so I just settled on top 3... Haha!) 

Next, I wanted to share that his new record, Awake and Pretty Much Sober, is available for preorder now. They made a limited edition PINK marbled vinyl.... LOOK! 

Violents VinylI love the artwork and everything he chose for this release. It's SO special. And I cannot wait for you to hear all the songs! 

Last, I wanted to share that there is going to be a show in New York surrounding his release. I'll be there—I couldn't miss it. 

ShowYou can get tickets and more information here

Thank you so much for letting me share a bit of exciting news from our personal life! This record has been a long time coming (he started working on it while we still lived in Missouri), and it's very close to my heart! Proud doesn't even begin to describe how I feel. 

xx -Elsie 

Sew with Us bonus lessonsHey, friends! In case you haven't heard, we recently added TWO bonus project lessons to our Sew With Us e-Course. For all of you who have already signed up, just log in to your account to see the new lessons. You're welcome. And for those of you who have been thinking about getting into sewing but you don't know where to start, you NEED to check out Rachel and Katie's course. It's packed full of simple, easy to follow projects that get progressively more advanced as you work through the course. It's amazing. The course inspired me to sew my first (queen sized) quilt this past year, and I cannot tell you how proud I felt along with how cute it looks on our bed. :) 

You can read more about the Sew with Us course here. Check out the entire course outline to see what you will learn! And if you aren't already signed up for our newsletter, be sure to sign up here because we often run sales or give you more info about our e-Courses in our newsletters. Don't miss out. Happy Saturday! -Emma

DIY Foil Manicure (click through for tutorial)         Maybe it's just because I'm a child of the 80s, but I looove all things holographic. The last time I got a manicure, my salon girl was telling me about the new foils that had just gotten in, and as it was a new thing to me, I was kind of fascinated with how they work. Of course being a DIY-minded girl, I wanted to find out how to use foils myself, and it turns out that it's pretty easy!

DIY Foil Manicure (click through for tutorial)Supplies:
-nail foils
-nail foil adhesive (you can also get adhesive at the above link, and some foil packs come with one included)
-base coat color nail polish
-top coat (it's better not to use a quick dry top coat for this)
-cuticle stick
-small pair of scissors

DIY Foil Manicure (click through for tutorial)         Cut and trim your nails to desired shape and apply a few coats of whichever base coat you would prefer. I chose to use a white polish so the pink foil would clearly stand out against it.

DIY Foil Manicure (click through for tutorial)         Once your nails are totally dry, use your scissors to cut triangle strips from your nail foil paper that are about 3/4" long (you can cut one that's a little smaller for your pinky). Cut some straight and long but thin strips of foil as well if you want to do little stripes next to your triangle pieces. 
 
DIY Foil Manicure (click through for tutorial)         Brush a thin but even coat of foil adhesive over your nails and let them dry (I would do one hand at a time). The glue should turn clear when dry, but you really don't want it to be too wet or the foil won't stick. So I would wait about 15-20 minutes to make sure it's dry enough. It should be a little tacky, but not wet.

DIY Foil Manicure (click through for tutorial)         When the glue is dry enough, place a piece of your foil where you want to apply it to your nail and use your orange stick to rub the foil onto the nail so the pattern will transfer to the tacky glue beneath. You'll want to rub pretty hard to get it to stay, but you can always lift up a bit on the end that's hanging over the edge of your nail to see what's sticking and what's not. Once your foil is fully rubbed onto the nail, peel the rest of the transfer strip off the nail and it should leave the foil design behind!

DIY Foil Manicure (click through for tutorial)     Repeat with each nail until you have your shape on each one.

DIY Foil Manicure (click through for tutorial)       You can either leave just your triangle shapes, or you can add some long thin strips next to the shapes for more of a pattern. Just apply onto the glue, rub, and peel the transfer layer off!

Seal your foil with a quick coat of top coat (they recommended not doing multiple passes if you can help it to keep the foil in tact), and once your top coat is dry, you're good to go!

DIY Foil Manicure (click through for tutorial)        Oh la la! How fun! The nice thing is that you can remove the foil easily with regular polish remover when you go to take the polish off later, so no extra steps are needed there. You are technically supposed to be able to cover your entire nail with the foil so it is your nail polish, buuuut I can't quite get that method down yet and the edges always look kind of wonky. Maybe some more practice on that one? xo. Laura

Credits // Author: Laura Gummerman, Photography: Laura Gummerman + Todd Gummerman. Photos edited with the NEW A Beautiful Mess actions

Project Projector- Why we traded in our television for a projectorHey, guys, I'm here today to share all about our projector screen and why we no longer need a television in our home. 

I've been meaning to post this for quite a while, but it was one of the hardest home projects to photograph ever! I really hope this post will do it justice because we are LOVING this choice for our new home. 

First, a little backstory! 

Den LayoutHere's the layout of our den. It was always very clear to us that this would be the best "TV room." It's the darkest room of our home and one of the coziest. And our other living room has a HUGE window that makes it feel much more formal. So this room was the obvious choice for a television situation. The previous owners had the TV set up in the corner between the fireplace and the wall with windows. And the sofa pointing toward the windows. 

You can see from this sketch that there's really no good place for a television. It would either have to be on the wall with the windows, in the corner, on the stone fireplace, on the bookshelves OR on the opposite wall, which would have meant the sofas would face away from the fireplace... that was a deal breaker to me. 

We had loved a solution that some friends of ours came up with to mount a projector and have a screen that comes down over the bookcase. It felt really right for this room. So we decided to go with that option! 

See the before photos of this room here

Project Projector- Why we traded in our television for a projector Here's what the bookshelves look like by day when the projector is up. We built a soffit around the projector screen and added back the original trim from the bookcase on top of it, so it blends in really well! People don't even notice that there's a projector up in there until we push the remote to scroll it down! 

Here's the opposite view. 

Project Projector- Why we traded in our television for a projector        Our projector is mounted up on the ceiling. All the wires to connect our projector, speakers and apple TV are hidden either in the ceiling (attic) or behind pieces of the bookcase. 

Initially, I was a little worried that this large projector would be an eyesore, but I never notice it in real life. The only time I ever notice it is in photos. 

Project Projector- Why we traded in our television for a projector  We purchased a remote controlled projector. So it's super easy to bring up and down with just the press of a button. 

Project Projector- Why we traded in our television for a projector   Like many people these days, we got rid of our cable (when we moved), and we just have Apple TV and some monthly subscriptions that we use to watch our shows. 

Project Projector- Why we traded in our television for a projector    The Office reruns are what we watch when one of us needs some cheering up. 

Stuff I used: Sorry guys—I can't remember the exact projector we bought, but there are similar projectors in a lot of price ranges (just read the reviews!), projector screen (I think ours is 100 inches wide, but what you need depends on how far your projector will sit from the screen), speakers (I got the same ones as our turntable set up because they match, but also the quality is great).

Other stuff: My friend, Sam, has a travel size projector that we used to watch a movie with (you just have to have some speakers to connect it to). It's a little more affordable (especially if you have a white wall and can skip the screen), and it's portable, which is neat.  

Project Projector- Why we traded in our television for a projector      Project Projector- Why we traded in our television for a projector       Taking photos in the dark is pretty much my nightmare, but I hope these photos can give you a pretty good idea of how our set up works and why we love it so much!! 

In this house it was definitely the perfect solution for a room that didn't really have a good place for a television. Now that we've had it, I would definitely do it again in future homes (not that we're moving any time soon!). If you have any questions, let me know. 

xx -Elsie 

Credits//Author: Elsie Larson. Project Assistant: Collin DuPree.Photography: Amber Ulmer. Photos edited with New A Beautiful Mess actions

Triple (Hot) Chocolate (via abeautifulmess.com)    Hope you are in the mood for a chocolaty treat today because I've got just the thing to warm you right up! If you've ever needed an easy homemade hot chocolate recipe, then look no further. 

I also had the great pleasure to work with Tim Tam biscuits on this post—two exciting things about that. First, their delicious chocolaty wafer biscuits (called biscuits, not cookies because they are from Australia, guys) go perfectly with this recipe as the crunchy wafer insides are amazing next to the rich and creamy hot chocolate. And the second thing, Tim Tam biscuits are fully launching in the United States (!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!). So if you are US based, like me, and have had these while traveling and wished you could buy them at home—well, you're in luck. The four flavors available are Original, Classic Dark, Dark Mint and Chewy Caramel. Hooray!

Easy homemade hot chocolate recipeFor this hot chocolate recipe, we are going to use three different chocolates, but I've also got a few quick notes at the end of this post regarding substitution ideas in case you are looking to swap things around. But first, here's my super simple and delicious recipe for homemade hot chocolate. 

Hot chocolate ingredientsTriple (Hot) Chocolate, serves two

2 cups whole milk
1 cup half and half cream
1 oz. dark chocolate
1 oz. milk chocolate
1 oz. white chocolate
1/4 teaspoon espresso powder
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
marshmallows for serving

In a medium pot combine the milk, cream, and extract. Cook over medium/high heat until hot (about 3-4 minutes). 

Homemade hot chocolate recipeAdd the chopped chocolate and espresso powder and whisk well until the chocolate fully melts into the milk mixture. Pour into mugs and top with marshmallows. 

Triple (Hot) Chocolate (via abeautifulmess.com)  I told you it was simple—you're only about 6-8 minutes away from a cup of homemade hot chocolate! Here's a couple notes:

-You can use all one type of chocolate if you prefer or if that's what you have on hand, just use 3 oz. total. 

-You can swap out the vanilla extract for other extracts to include flavors you prefer like hazelnut, almond, or even other flavors like cherry or banana. 

-Bonus points if you make your own homemade marshmallows to go along with this hot chocolate recipe! 

So get your cozy socks on, queue up your favorite Netflix show, and make this hot chocolate to serve with Tim Tam biscuits soon. You won't regret it. :) xo. Emma

Credits // Author and Photography: Emma Chapman. Photos edited with the NEW A Beautiful Mess actions

 

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