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Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Easter Brunch

Spring is finally here and I could not be more excited! I love seeing everything come back to life after winter....including my diet ;) .

I have been making Easter Brunch for as long as I can remember, and in my household, we prefer tradition. I always make lamb, a casserole or two, my fresh rosemary bread and deviled eggs! I'm getting hungry just thinking about it..

This year I will not get to decorate my table (sobs silently). Yes, our dining room is progress. As I mentioned in a previous post, we made a big move a year and a half ago! We transitioned from a one-bedroom apartment to a townhouse; and while it has been so exciting to finally have stairs, and a guest room and a bonus room, the dining room has well...taken a back seat. I'd take pictures but I'm too embarrassed to show you all. Each room in the house has been a job. I'm on a first name basis with all the sales people at Home Goods now. "Yes Michelle, I'm back for the third time this week." (Is there a Home Gooders Anonymous club?)

I'm not sure what is keeping me from making progress in there. I bought this REALLY great piece for a steal when I first moved in. It's a wine rack with storage from Pottery Barn and it was brand spankin' new. A girl purchased it and when she got it home it didn't fit where she hoped it would, so she sold it at a used furniture shop I frequent. You better believe as soon as I saw it I grabbed the first sales associate nearby and forced him to guard it as I continued to browse. Luckily, it fit for me! Ever since that one great purchase, I just haven't done a thing. I promise I will be making strides come this summer and will keep all of you posted as I do.

I'm still going to cook my traditional Easter Brunch, but this year we will be dining al fresco considering the war zone my dining room is in (okay it's really not THAT bad, but I'm a perfectionist). 
For my theme, I decided rather than having all the ultra-bright, ultra-pastel, traditional table thematic we see on every magazine cover, I wanted to create a spring theme that was a little more toned-down and hair whimsy. As airy and soft and delicate as spring is, I wanted my theme to reflect that. Soft linens, delicate lace-inspired plates, touches of easter in unexpected ways and a punch of color to disrupt the neutrals. 

Below are a few photos that inspired me, followed by instructions on how to achieve the look and where to purchase the items to complete it.

Photo Source : Local Milk

Photo Source: Country Living

Photo Source : Southern Weddings

Photo Source : Elizabeth Anne Designs

Source Unknown

Putting it all together:

Grapevine Wreath / White Footed Bowl /  Egg Cups / Linen Napkins  / Moss BunnyTerrafirma Ceramics Plates (mine are in dark brown but I love this baby blue)

Hanging Wreath as a Chandelier:

Take some eucalyptus (usually Whole Foods carries this or you can find it at a local florist) and attach it to your grapevine wreath, being sure to have it drape down some on the sides. You can use hot glue or florist wire to attach it to the wreath. You can do this same-day or a day ahead of Easter. Attach your wreath to the chandelier in your dining room using fishing line or thin wire. If you're dining al fresco like me, use some fishing line to hang it from a tree or pergola if you have one.

Tea Stained Eggs:

Use 4-5 bags (depending on how dark you want them) and steep in boiling water for 15 minutes. Remove the bags and add 1-2 tbsp of vinegar to the tea. Add your boiled eggs and leave them in the dye for 3-4 hours (check in to see if they are the color you want). Make sure they are completely dry before adhering names.

Bring water to a boil with eggs immersed. Let them boil for 1 minute and then keep them on a hot burner with a lid for 10-12 minutes.

Boil water for your tea. Add 4-5 tea bags to the water to begin steeping your dye.

Let the bags sit in the water for about 15 minutes and then add your eggs. I only made two eggs for this project so I added them straight to my pitcher. If you are making 6+, I recommend adding 1-2 more bags and increasing the amount of water by 16 oz. Let them sit in the water for 3-4 hours checking on the color every hour until they are at your desired darkness.

Adding Names:

....if you'd like to attach names to the eggs download the font Modesty (link) and upload it to your Silhouette / Cricket software. Create your names in one file and send it to your machine to cut. I am using black self-adhesive vinyl for my eggs, but I think a baby blue, yellow or gold would look great, too. I'm using font size 45. 

Once they are done, cut around each name with a pair of scissors and using your tool, remove the vinyl around the name being careful to keep the dots of your "i's". I didn't use my transfer paper to adhere the names to the eggs because I feared it might interfere with the dye in the area.

Type up your names.

Have your machine cut the names.

Adhere the names to the tea-stained eggs.


Creating your Centerpiece:
If you already have a footed bowl, use it! Grab a piece of floral foam and soak it in water until it's full (about 30 minutes). If you live in a town that is beautiful in the spring, drive around and look for floral trees. I found all of these within a block from our house!

All of this was FREE! You don't have to spend a fortune to create a beautiful arrangement. Look for floral branches and a few vines to create the look I put together.

Let's start with your oranges. Take bamboo skewers and snap them in half. Arrange 4-5 oranges in your bowl pushing half the skewer in the orange and the other half into the floral foam. Be sure to have at least two in the center on opposite sides and a few touching the rim of the bowl like the picture above.  Follow by filling in the blanks with your floral branches and flowers. The thick twigs on the pieces should push easily into the foam. Make sure you cut them down so just the flowers show in your centerpiece. If you have any left over eucalyptus, drape a little off to one side of the arrangement.


For the menu, here is a free print file from yours truly! Just save it as a .jpeg, upload it to Word (or similar), and then under formatting options, use "Tight" or "Behind Text", add your menu and print. 

Does your family have a traditional Easter meal? Let me know what you guys make in the comments! Always looking for new ideas.

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