Sunday, February 14, 2010

Happy Valentine's Day!

I really love Valentine's Day, even when technically I hated it (i.e., being single and surrounded by couples), deep down, I still liked it. I mostly love Valentine's Day for the crafting and decorating that surrounds it. And like I said in an earlier post, it's almost like a crafting last hurrah after the Christmas season is over. hence, the glitter ball garland I made a while ago.

Today's craft was made as a gift, and a practice one to keep.

I got the idea and instructions from (who else?) Martha. And note, the hardest part of this project was finding all the ingredients.
I got the square glass vases from the candle section at Bed, Bath and Beyond for $5.99 each (also suitable vases can be found at Michael's, but were more expensive), glass round drinking glasses at BB&B for $1.99. I used nearly 2 8oz bags of conversation hearts, 3 7oz bags of red hots, and for the pink arrangement, 1 10 stem bouquet of short stem roses for $14.99, 1 bouquet of spray roses for $7.99, and the red arrangement was 2 bouquets of the $7.99 each spray roses.

1. hot glue the bottom of the drinking glass to the square vase, just to hold it. (Pansy likes to help)

2. Fill the area between the glass and vase with candy.
Note: I found it very easy to pour in the red hots, but then I discovered each bag has a lot of shards, which show up pretty clearly, so I ended up pouring the candy into a big bowl, and transferring it by small handful to the vase.

3. Make the bouquets:
I cut each stem to a bit longer than I'd need,
and arranged them in a circle from the center, with longer stems in the center, shorter stems on the edge. I wrapped the bouquets with a rubber band to hold the flowers in place,
and cut the stems to give the bouquet a wide, flat bottom that could kind of stand up.
4. Add water to glass of vase (don't get the candy wet!) and add flowers.
Voila! Not too hard- and I have very little experience in flower arranging.

I also had one nutella recipe that I made after Nutella Day- sugar cookie nutella buttercream sandwiches. I used Martha's sugar cookie recipe (from her cookie cookbook), which is a really easy recipe. I had run out of vanilla when making the nutella cupcakes, so I used almond extract. I also used my fondant decorating mat when rolling these out, to give them a pretty design- I'd planned to make them into sandwich cookies, so I wouldn't decorate them with frosting, but I still wanted them to be pretty. I got the idea from Martha's cardamom cookies, which she featured on her Christmas cookie episode this year- and which I watched last Saturday (thank you, DVR!)

I discovered these cookies are really good with coffee, so many mornings this past week (after mailing 3/4 of the batch to other people), I had the "should I eat a cookie with breakfast?" debate. I have no qualms about eating cookies for breakfast, unlike most people. My only issue is the calories of such a cookie. So the big question each day was, "is this cookie worth the calories?"

Yes, it is.


Erin said...

Adorable. I love that vase idea. The cookies came out beautifully too. I really wish I could put some time and energy into such fun crafts. You may just inspire me to make the time one day.

Anonymous said...

What a great job!!! i have been meaning to fill up some clear glass vases with conversation hearts, but i love how you took it to the next level with the flowers- this is definitely a keeper!!! (and thanks for the step-by-step photos which always help with the directions)!