Father’s Day

Fathers Day 2013

Father’s Day Gift Ideas

I always find it a challenge to find interesting gifts for my Dad and Husband on Father’s Day. If you don’t want to give the typical tie or gift card here are a few ideas you might like. What do you think your Husband or Dad would think of these ideas? What gift do you usually end up getting for Dad?

From Left to Right: Vintage Mad Men Wall Clock from Orange Door Vintage  |  Hand Forged Geometric “Enjoy” Wall Mounted Bottle Opener by Red Forgeworks  |  Daddy Rocks Guitar Pick Keychain by With Love From Lucille  |  Whiskey Barrel Bar Stool made from old Whiskey Barrels, Designed and Handcrafted by my Husband at 1933  |  Handmade Rusty Brown Leather Journal by La Bella Vita Journals & Gifts  | Herringbone Fabric iPad Cover by Berties Closet

Color Inspiration…Children’s Poster

Color Inspiration, My Designed Life

Time for a little color inspiration… I thought this was a fun poster. This was a poster from 1936 advertising an Amateur piano contest for children in New York. I adore the subject matter of the little girls playing piano. And I’m also drawn to it because of its bold and simple lines. Love the simplicity. What do you think?

Simple Centerpieces – Painted Tin Cans

Simple CenterpieceI love seeing Weddings and Showers that incorporate unique yet simple ideas for centerpieces and favors. There is something about an imaginative handmade piece that can make your event even more memorable. I’ve noticed lately that painted cans and jars are growing in popularity. Perhaps it’s the waste not, want not mentality. Or, the need to be more cost-effective when having a Wedding. There are so many great ideas out there. I think these Painted Tin Can Centerpieces add that unexpected touch that will make your guests smile. I’m still smiling every day as I see these sitting on my window sill.


Row of Painted Tin Cans


  1. Gather up those used tin cans
  2. Wash and dry cans thoroughly
  3. Tape off the top edge of the can with painters tape.
  4. Prime your tin cans with a Self Etching Primer. This helps the paint to stick to the can better. (I used Rust-Oleum)
  5. Once the primer is dry, then spray with Chalkboard Paint. You can find this at any home improvement store. Set aside and let dry for at least a couple of hours.
  6. Select your favorite colors of paint or colors that coordinate with your special event.Painted Tin Cans
  7. Now, tape off each can where you want the color to show. Do this by covering the area that you DON’T want painted with tape. This will protect the chalkboard paint from being covered by the colored spray paint. I chose to tape them at different heights on each can. Paint with multiple light coats or you’ll get runs in the paint. Having different sized color blocks adds more interest and variety. But, use your imagination and paint these however you like. You can paint stripes, multiple colors, your initials or anything you can think of. It’s your event, make it unique to you!
  8. Let the paint dry overnight. Once the paint no longer feels like it is tacky it is fully dry.
  9. Take chalk and label each can with your table numbers, guests names or whatever you like.
  10. Fill with beautiful flowers, utensils, candy, or straws. There are so many great ideas you can use these painted cans for.

There you go, sweet and simple! Plus, once your Reception or Shower is over these can still be used again. There are countless ways you can continue to use these Painted Tin Cans. What do you think? How would you use these centerpieces? Or, how would you alter them to work for you? Till next time…

Always, Genevieve and Lucy

Always, Genevieve and Lucy

Fun (Local) Finds – Unique Mother’s Day Necklaces

Fun Finds


My Charmed Wife – Handstamped Mixed Metal Family Necklace

It’s a good time to start thinking about Mother’s Day gifts. Being a Mom myself I have always wanted a Mother’s Necklace. But most I find don’t appeal to me. I want something more creative. I am guessing I’m not the only one that feels this way. So I did a search to try to unearth some more unique choices. This time I decided to keep my search local. To me that means good ol’ St. Louie, so these are all St. Louis based artists. What do you think? Do any of these necklaces look interesting to you?

Till next time…


Another Day Boutique – Family Tree Birthstone Necklace

Slap Dash Things - Upcycled Guitar Pick Necklace With MOM Charm

Slap Dash Things – Upcycled Guitar Pick Necklace With MOM Charm

CrowStealsFire - Wax Seal Monogram Mother’s Necklace

CrowStealsFire – Wax Seal Monogram Mother’s Necklace

Megan Goldkamp Jewelry - Child’s Signature Sterling Silver Engraved Necklace

Megan Goldkamp Jewelry – Child’s Signature Sterling Silver Engraved Necklace

From Top to Bottom: The Charmed Wife – Handstamped Mixed Metal Family Necklace  |  Another Day Boutique – Family Tree Birthstone Necklace  |  Slap Dash Things – Upcycled Guitar Pick Necklace with MOM Charm, (These necklaces are created by an 11 year old girl and $1.00 of each sale goes to EVERYONE MATTERS, an anti-bullying campaign.)  |  Crow Steals Fire – Wax Seal Monogram Mother’s Necklace  |  Megan Goldkamp Jewelry – Child’s Signature Sterling Silver Engraved Necklace

Surprise Mail!

What a sweet surprise to find in my mail today!

What a sweet surprise to find in my mail today!

Happy Friday Everyone! My-oh-my this week has just flown by. And with a week like I’ve had what a nice surprise it was to open my mail and find a package just for me. So kindly sent from my sister-in-law, Cheryl. When I opened the package it was another nice surprise to find she had started her own business, Peaces by CJ. Looking inside the envelope I was thrilled to discover this beautiful necklace with interchangeable magnetic pieces. Each piece had a small element of me that I could share with the world each day. One a magnet with a photo of my wedding, one with my business logo and one of an illustration I created for my stationery designs. What a creative idea! Thank you, Cheryl!

How about all of you? Did you have any fun Friday surprises today? Please share with us in the comments section below. Till next time…

The Zest – Allyson & Doug

The Zest

A St. Louis Wedding: Allyson & Doug

Happy New Year! Since New Year’s represents new beginnings I would like to kick off this year’s blog with one of the happiest new beginnings there is, a wedding. This wedding is from a very sweet couple, full of heart and joy. This wedding shot in St. Louis by L Photographie, really captures the excitement and joy of new beginnings. Enjoy!

Allyson and Doug

All Photos by L Photographie



Allyson_Hair and Hubby



AllysonWed_candy bar



Color Inspiration…Road Trip

road trip and fall colors

Time for some color inspiration today. Autumn is fast approaching and I always get excited when this time of year comes around. I love the cool crisp air and the transition into richer more subdued colors. I took this photo on a road trip we took to Chicago this summer. Thought there were some nice fall colors hidden in this summer sunset. What do you think?

Till next time…

Fun Finds – Katie Daisy

Fun Finds

Katie Daisy

It’s time for another Fun Finds. And here is one of my favorites. A couple of years ago I ran across Katie Daisy’s work and fell in love. When I look at her work it gives me a sense of calm and positive energy. Like a good friend giving you words of advice or a stranger with a kind word. The art she creates by hand is mixed with my great love for typography and her work just plain makes me happy. Her alphabet print hung in Lucy’s baby nursery until we turned it into my office. It still hangs here as the piece is so versatile that it works just as great for a designer’s office as it does for a baby’s room. You can find more of her work at www.katiedaisy.com. Let me know what you think.

Till next time…

Katie Daisy

When Life Hands You Lemons…. Have An Adventure

When life hands you lemons

You may have noticed an absence from me over the last few weeks. I was doing so well posting each week, then suddenly dropped off. I hated to leave you hanging but sometimes life throws things at you that you aren’t expecting. And you have to stop everything to deal with the situation. That is what happened to me after I returned to work after a short vacation with my family. I came back to find that I had lost my job. Not a complete shock with this economy but you are never truly prepared for it. So, I have been rushing around these past few weeks trying to get a lot of things in order.

I certainly had my cries and panic attacks. But, you can’t dwell on what happened. You have to move forward and see what good can come of this situation. So, as I have come to tell my kids when we are in rough or uncertain situations, “This is an adventure”. It may seem an odd thing to say but it is all in the way you look at it.

For instance, while on this short vacation, our car broke down halfway on the way to our destination. We were blessed enough to have stopped in a good place. While me and my daughters waited at a restaurant to find out what was going to happen with the car (and our trip) I told them, “This is an adventure”. They seemed to like that and took the whole situation in stride. As we tried to kill time at the restaurant, then across the street at the JC Penney, to meeting the guys that were fixing our car and getting to rent a new car to use on the rest of our trip, it all seemed like an adventure to them.

So, I am now embarking on my own adventure. I’m certainly a little scared, more than a bit anxious, but this whole new life I am living now is definitely an adventure. This could be the opportunity to really get my Always, Genevieve & Lucy business going full force. Or, a new and exciting job opportunity could be in my future. Maybe we will move to a new town. Only God knows, and I’m sure he has a plan. It is now just my job to work hard, pray and see where this adventure takes me. I’ll be sure to keep you updated!

Have any of you embarked on an “adventure” like this? What was the outcome? What is your advice?

Till next time…

The Zest

Today, I am excited to start a new feature here on My Designed Life. I’ve always wanted to feature those small glimpses and details of someones special day or life changing moment. To me that is the zest of life. Those special moments sprinkled throughout our sometimes monotonous lives. So, I’d like to add a little zest and inspiration to your day by sharing with you weddings, baby showers, new-born babies, the newly engaged and more. Any event that gives life that little extra zest.

So, let’s get started:

The Zest

A June Connecticut Wedding:  Jackie & Mike

This classic wedding took place at the Aqua Turf Club, in Plantsville, Connecticut. Catching the special little details of that big day was photographer Tracy Kavanaugh of Lily Pad Prints. Small details are one thing that get me excited about special events like this. Hope you enjoy and I hope to share more moments that add zest to life soon…

Tracy Kavanaugh - Lily Pad Prints

Photos courtesy of Tracy Kavanaugh – Lily Pad Prints

Tracy Kavanaugh - Lily Pad Prints

Tracy Kavanaugh - Lily Pad Prints

Tracy Kavanaugh - Lily Pad Prints

Tracy Kavanaugh - Lily Pad Prints

Tracy Kavanaugh - Lily Pad Prints