Friday, September 25, 2015

Living Room Progress!

Hello my beautiful little cupcakes! 

This last week has been such a fun one guys! I finally got our last box unpacked (yay!), I had an interview and got the job at... (You might want to sit down for this guys)....POTTERY BARN!!! Ummmm, can we just talk about the discounts this job comes with?? Which means blogging even more great stuff for you guys!! And on top of what was already a glorious week, I finally got to start putting together our living room, which (on my happy scale) ranks just barely below getting a job at Pottery Barn...seriously, like maybe a half of a rank. I hope all of you had an equally fabulous week!! 

So today, I just wanted to share with you guys my first little bit of decor I've added to the living room. As anybody whose ever put together a home of their own knows, turning a house into a home doesn't happen in a day...or in one trip to Home much as I do love that place. Everybody has their own system for decorating their home. Personally, I've been trying really hard to focus on finishing a room before moving onto the next. I can't speak for anyone else, but in my own experience it's much easier to finish what you started rather than having a hand in every room of your home all at once. It's also much less overwhelming that way! Now, don't get me wrong, if I find a piece that is just too perfect to pass up for my bedroom and I don't think it will be there much longer, I might not be able to resist snatching it up...we all have our weaknesses ;)...but for the most part, I try to keep myself tied to just one room at a time! 

I chose to work on my living room first because it's the place of gathering. It's where my family and I gather, where our guests spend their ties the home together. So I felt it was the most important room of the house. 

I'm going for a soft, romantic, cozy feel for the living room, but my vision definitely leans (hard) on the glamorous side of design.... faux fur, satin, lots of white candles, and flowers. My color palette is lots of creams, whites, golds, and a touch of blush pink. 

Keep in mind as you scroll through the pictures below that this is the result of my first shopping trip of many and I still need many crucial pieces but i just wanted to give you guys a preview! I'm excited to document as this room develops into what I hope will be a comfy and beautiful place to spend some time!
Throw Blanket : Home Goods - $19.99
The coffee table decor is temporary. I had these items on hand. I like they way they looked but will definitely be updating it next!
Brass circle decor : Kirklands - Not sure of the cost,  it was a gift. The flowers are from The Dollar Tree : 3 bunches for $3

All throw pillows : Home Goods - (from left to right) $30, 2 for $25, $19.99, 2 for $25, $16.99

My boy loves loves loves the new blanket!

I hope you guys can get a good idea of what I'm going for with this room! Just remember that it's only the first step and there is so much more to come! My last little note I want to leave you all with is that Ross, Tj Maxx, Marshalls, Home Goods, and of course Target (although lately, Target has gotten a little expensive...) are all amazing places to find great home decor items without breaking your budget!! So make sure you check them out!

Let me know what you guys think! Leave me comments and email me at ! Subscribe via email at the top of the page (p.s. you will only receive an email when I post something new!) and follow me on social media! Instagram: @thecaliforniacupcake Pinterest: Shannan Gladwin


Friday, September 18, 2015

New Apartment Tour!!

Guys....I need a minute to gather myself......

OK, drum roll please...

After a, very long, very stressful, journey moving (yet again) to our new home in Minnesota, we are FINALLY here...and I have no words to explain my obsession with our new place. No. Words. It's a perfect one bedroom apartment for my little family in the perfect location (i.e: walking distance to endless shopping...cough* Home Goods cough*....and 30 minutes to The Mall Of America..) It's like my own little slice of Heaven over here!! We'll see how far into the winter I get before calling it my own little slice of Hell...But shhh. Let's just, for now, live in this fantasy world where there is no winter and Maple Grove, MN really is the perfect place. Yay! 

 Alright, so basically over the next couple weeks I'm going to be unpacking and getting settled, and unpacking some more...but if I'm being honest, we've been here for almost 4 days now and I haven't even attempted to unpack the closet. I don't know if anybody else can relate, but when I get into a new place, all I want to do is plan exactly how I'm going to decorate the whole place, room by room. I literally can't even help it. I would much rather spend my time wandering around Home Goods and TJ Maxx taking mental notes of everything I plan on buying, than spend it unpacking...because...boring, am I right?! Anybody? 

As you can gather from my posts, I'm going to be documenting my process in making this apartment into our home here on California Cupcake! So since the process is officially underway, I wanted my first post to be pictures of the new place completely empty before we moved anything in or unpacked anything! That way we can get a real feel for what we are working with and what I have planned! 

Let's start the tour!

This picture is taken from the front entry. This is the kitchen island and the living room. The whole place has wood floors except for in the bedroom which, as far as personal preference perfect! It makes the living areas so so easy to clean but keeps the bedroom nice and cozy.

That door to the right is the washer and dryer. and the hallway leads to the bedroom and the bathroom. The wall space to the left where the outlet is...(if you can even see that) will be my little office space!!! So many plans I'm gonna pee myself...not really, but I'm excited.

Here is a view of the whole kitchen. I think this is my favorite part of the whole apartment...major swooning over the granite counter tops for real!
**Note Tyson telling me to take him on a walk...

Here are a couple pictures of our bathroom...ignore my road trip hair and try getting your shit together while you're in a car for three days ;)  Can I just say how seriously excited I am to have a double vanity this year?! No more hoovering over the same tiny sink when we brush our teeth or trying to share a tiny mirror while Mr. Princess does his hair in the morning...Sorry Cam, you're secret is out...

It was actually rather challenging to get a picture of the bedroom...this was the best I could get. When I first walked in, it looked a little on the smaller side, but once we put our bed in it I realized it's actually the biggest bedroom we've had in the four years and five homes we've lived in together...who wouldn't be excited about that!?

And finally, the closet!! Again, it's really hard to get a picture of this closet, so bear with me.. (bear..bare? idk.) Anyways...I have BIG PLANS for this closet...excited is an understatement!! But shhh, that's later.

Alright guys, that concludes my little virtual tour of our new home! I hope you like it! I have so many crazy plans to spruce this already beautiful place up and make it my own. I can't wait to show you all the great ways to decorate a rental! Stay tuned cupcakes!

P.S. Right now, I'm working with nothing but an Iphone 6 camera, but a new camera is in the works so hang in there!! :) 

Thank you so much for reading guys! It means everything to me! Don't forget to subscribe at the top of the page and follow me on social media! Pinterest: Shannan Gladwin  Instagram: @thecaliforniacupcake 


Monday, September 14, 2015

Five Dollar DIY Dessert Tower

Hi Cupcakes! 

It feels so good to finally be getting another post up for you guys! I'm sorry I've literally been MIA here for like over a week now. This week is our moving week (from Califoria to Minnesota for those of you who haven't read my About Me post) and I've been so wrapped up in packing and goodbyes. But I'm back! And I'm so excited for the next few posts I have planned! 

I'm currently in the middle of nowhere (somewhere on the I-80 in Nebraska) typing this post up on my Blogger iPhone app. I've literally typed this whole post like three times now and it keeps force quitting on me. I'm gonna lose my ish for real if it happens one more time, so let's hope I get through it! Bare with me guys...

So originally I was calling these babies "Cupcake Towers" because I made them for the cupcakes we had at Rachel's bridal shower. But I felt like that didn't give them enough credit for how versatile they really are so now I'm calling them "Dessert Towers". But you can call them whatever your little heart desires. :) 

Things you'll need:
- 3 glass plates (got mine from the 99 cent store) 
- 2 glass candle stick holders (99 cent store)
- Epoxy glue ( had on hand but you can buy it at lowes)

STEP ONE : Clean all of your pieces before you start anything because once you glue them together it's harder to get the finger prints off! 

Get your glue ready and line the bottom rim of the candle stick holder with it. Place the glue lined candle stick holder on the center of your bottom plate. Wait a minute or two for the glue to dry. Now Line the TOP of the same candle stick holder with glue and place your second place (centered) on the top of the candle stick holder...wait for it to should look something like this...

Repeat step two for the third tier and let the whole thing set and dry! And that's a wrap! 

Remember those cute cupcake toppers we made?! 

Guys! These were so so easy I can't even stand it. Literally, there is no trick or tip to make it work, it's just simple all on its own! And it literally cost five dollars! What?! For real guys. 

Here is a couple of pictures of them in action at the bridal shower!

Ugh!! But seriously how amazing are these babies?! I'm obsessed! And the BEST part of this project is that I plan on repurposing these guys in my bathroom and on my vanity for all my fave products!! Are you dying yet?! I am. I can't wait to show you guys!! Look out for my upcoming post with more pictures from the bridal shower! That dessert table was the reeeaaalll deal guys...can't wait! 

Hope you loved this as much as me! So glad to be back! This week will be crazy moving into our new place but I am crazy excited to show you the new place and start decorating!!

P.S. Sorry if this post isn't centered or the formatting is weird. I have such little control using the app compared to using the computer. I'll fix whatever ugliness comes out of this as soon as I have access to my computer! But for now, I'm writing to you from the middle of you'll live! 

Leave me comments or email me at Ill be adding links to all my social media soon but for now subscribe via email and find me on Instagram @thecaliforniacupcake! 


Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Repurposed Wine Bottles!

Hi Cupcakes! 

Hope everyone is having a fabulous week and a happy hump day! The future hubs is away for the week at training camp so today I spent the afternoon soaking up all the puppy snuggles and Gossip Girl episodes I could get before getting up and being somewhat productive with my day! P.S. Blair Waldorf is everything, and if you don't know who that is, stop what you're doing right now and go watch season one of Gossip Girl...

Alright, onto the good Or rather, wine bottles. Today, I'm sharing a fun DIY project that can be used in your home, for a wedding, a birthday party, anything really. They are totally versatile...and super pretty! 

Here is a list of all the things you'll need for this project:
- Empty Wine Bottles ( emptying them is half the fun ;) )
- An Oven (and oven mits/hand towel)
- A Knife / Razor Blade 
- Baking Soda
- Dish Soap
- Vinegar
- Peanut Butter (secret ingredient)
- Spray Paint In Your Choice Color ( I used Champagne Mist )

Side Note: I don't have pictures for every single step because I did this project for a bridal shower and this whole process happened at 10pm the night before the shower. Needless to say, I was in a bed, and my puppy, were calling my name! But not to worry, I have pictures of all the important steps!

First off, I want to explain that there are two different methods for getting the labels off your wine bottles. You will most likely need to use both methods depending on how many bottles you have and if they are all different or not. I had six bottles of wine that were all different brands so I needed to use both methods. The best way to test which method you will need to use is to wedge your razor blade or knife under the top corner of your label..just enough to test the tackiness of the glue. If your corner lifts fairly easy AND (this is the important part) the razor blade or knife sticks to the back of the label, then you have a tacky glue and you will use the oven method. If your knife or razor does not stick to the back of the corner and the glue feels a little more crunchy rather than gooey, then you are going to want to use the soaking method. Don't worry, we'll go over both methods so hang in there! 

STEP TWO: Oven Method
Go ahead and separate your bottles into a soaking pile and an oven pile. Turn on your oven and preheat it to 300 degrees. Once the oven is preheated, put your "oven bottles" in with the top labels facing up. Set your timer for 10 minutes! Once the ten minutes are up, get out your oven mitts...seriously, if you follow any of these steps, let it be "get out your oven mitts"!! (So freaking hot). Pull out all your bottles and place them on your counter..carefully! Holding the bottle with an oven mitt, you can wedge that blade or knife under the corner again, as far as you can this time...once the label has started to peel back, go ahead and peel the rest off with your fingers...again...carefully! The labels should come off in one piece, however, if you misjudged a label to be an "oven label" and it's just not working...don't freak out! I intentionally put all my bottles in the oven so I could show you the difference! You can see in the photo below that the bottle on the left is completely label free! But, the other two bottles are being a pain in the you-know-what...that's another way that you'll know those bottles need to be soaked. 

STEP TWO : Soaking Method
For the bottles with stubborn labels, don't pull your hair out...believe me, I've tried that, it doesn't help. First make sure you plug the drain in your kitchen sink. Next, fill your sink with really really really hot water. While the sink is filling up, fill up the rest of your bottles with hot water and drop them in the sink. Add 1/2 cup baking powder, 1 tablespoon of dish soap, and 2 cups of white vinegar. Let them soak for like 10-15 minutes. drain the sink, and grab your knife/razor! I really hate the word makes me cringe...but that's how you're going to get these wet labels off the bottles! So scrape away!
Soak the bottles for 10-15 minutes
use your knife or razor to peel off the soaked labels

STEP THREE : Get Rid Of That Glue!

Once all your labels are off your bottles will look (hopefully) like this...

You can't see it, but just trust me when I say there is a lot of left over sticky annoying glue where the labels used to be...if you spray painted them just like this, it would leave texture marks where the glue is...and nobody likes that, for real...

It took me so many failed attempts and so many hours of researching pinterest and googling like a crazy person to find the true secret to getting the glue off these bottles...and before you smarty pants say goo-gone...its not! Surprisingly enough...drum roll's peanut butter? That's right, peanut butter... I don't know what it is about peanut butter, wether it's the peanuts, or the butter, (lol) but I swear it works, every time. 

All you have to do, is spread the peanut butter over the areas that have the glue on them. I used a rubber (batter spreader thing? I can't remember the technical name right now...but you get it). You can use whatever tool you want, if you really want to have some fun with it, use your fingers ;) Once all the bottles are covered in the peanut butter, grab that handy dandy razor/knife again and start scraping (Ew, theres that word again...) I learned that the best way to get it off is scraping horizontally, rather than vertically, because the bottles are round...obviously. 

The glue will come right off with the peanut butter. Do your best to get it all off, but whatever is left just wash off with dish soap and really hot water! Now you finally have clean, label-less, glue-less wine bottles!!! 


This was the other step I completely forgot to get pictures of...super spacey that late at night...sorry 'bout it! But it's super basic I swear! Make sure you put up some sort of paint cloth or cardboard behind the bottles while you spray so the fall out doesn't get all over your surface! Hold the spray paint a little less than a foot away from the bottles and paint in an up and down motion! Don't lay it on too thick, instead, put multiple thin coats, so it doesn't drip and so that it dries in a reasonable time. I stuck my finger in the top of the bottle to spin it around to paint the other side! The most important tip is to make sure you have your mouth and nose covered when you spray paint because the fumes are so nuts its ridiculous! Once you've got even coats on all the bottles, leave them to dry overnight and in the morning...done! You can coat them in a clear acrylic coat for protection if you like! I ran out of time so I was just sure to be extra careful, but for prolonged use or display, I would add the clear coat!

Here are a couple projects I snapped of these babies in use at the bridal shower! Aren't they so gorge?! I will be doing a whole post on the bridal shower soon so stay tuned!! 

Thanks so much for stopping by today! It means so much to have such amazing readers! I hope you guys enjoyed these repurposed wine bottles. Leave me comments or send me emails at !! 

Don't forget to subscribe via email at the top of the page, follow me on Pinterest and on instagram @thecaliforniacupcake for updates and inspiration!