It’s been a while and we missed you. Please pardon our absence from the blogosphere these past few months. Things have been a little…hectic. And when not running around, planning parties or working, I’ve been indulging in an unquenchable Gilmore Girls binge. It seems the only cure is to run out of episodes. But I digress. The party planning has been due to my sister’s upcoming wedding and it has given me an excuse to craft homemade party favors, try out new cocktails, and spend a lot of time with some fabulous women, including Melissa! Spending time with her in person was a fall highlight; we even found a geocache in the middle of the woods!
Planning something like a bachelorette party is no easy feat, but with Melissa’s help I was able to plan a weekend that both made my sister happy and stayed true to our Hooch & Home sensibilities (homemade and affordable in case you forgot). We went hiking, toured the Vanderbilt Mansion in Hyde Park, stayed in a kick ass mansion on the Hudson, cooked dinners and enjoyed cocktails and got our last big fix of rosé for the season.
And of course we needed party favors. When it comes to party favors I really believe in providing something useful, and for our relaxing girls weekend it seemed like something that pampered would fit the bill. Homemade body scrub is easy to make, affordable to make in large quantities and even better than the store bought stuff. As winter approaches, I highly recommend whipping up a batch of this and keeping it in the shower. It’s also great as a gift. In keeping with the ball jar theme we also did a fun craft resulting in a useful water bottle, and created a special cocktail just for the bride to be.
DIY Body Scrub
What you will need:
- Glass jar – I used a wide mouth short ball jar (as pictured).
- Plastic lid for jar that won’t rust in the shower (as pictured)
- Salt – you can use Kosher salt or buy a more finely ground salt for a less intense scrub – no need to get fancy as table salt will do!
- Oil – olive oil is amazing but you can play around with different options to see what works best for your skin
- Essential oil of your choice (I love a citrus based one)
- Fill jar halfway with salt.
- Add oil until about 3/4 of the jar is full.
- Add 1/2 tsp of essential oil of your choice, or more for a stronger scent. Remember, you can add but you can’t subtract.
- Mix until oil and salt are fully combined. You will probably need to add more oil as the salt gets mixed in. You want to add enough oil so that all of the salt is held together but not so much that the salt is swimming in it.
The great thing about this project is that it’s really about your preferences and how you like your scrub. You can always add more oil or more salt until you find the right balance.
DIY Water Bottles
Anyone who has been to my house knows that I love glass jars. Tall ones, short ones, fat ones, and tiny ones. I love them all. It began with my first read through of Food In Jars by Marisa McCellan. I had no idea glass jars were so versatile. You can keep anything in them! They are also way better for us and the planet than anything plastic, and then there is the whole canning thing. Maybe I have a problem…You can imagine my delight when I discovered that there are companies making special lids just for jars so that they fill even more of my vessel needs. I picked up enough of reCap’s wide mouth lids for all the ladies at the party, and the tall wide mouth jars that hold lots of water but still fit in cup holder. That and some acrylic paint and we had ourselves a Saturday night craft project.
What you will need:
- Acrylic paint
- Acrylic paint brushes
- Painters tape
- Jar of your choice
- reCap lid (as pictured and purchased on Amazon)
How to do it:
- If you want to keep some of the jar to remain clear, use painter’s tape to create a design or pattern. You can also use a stencil. Ulive has a great video with instructions.
- Apply thin layers of acrylic paint to your jar in desired design.
- After first layer has dried, add another layer if desired. It depends on how opaque you would like your design to be. If it looks streaky add another layer.
- Place jars in cold oven.
- Set oven to 375 and set a timer for 30 minutes. After 30 minutes turn off the oven and let the glasses cool with the oven.
- Screw on lid and enjoy!
One of my sister’s favorite cocktails is called A Porch Swing. Smitten Kitchen has a great version of it here. For a celebratory twist we adapted this cocktail by switching out Sprite with Champagne. We appropriately upgraded the name by translating it to French!
Ingredients for one cocktail:
- 1.5 oz of Gin
- 1.5 oz Pimm’s No. 1 liqueur
- 4 oz lemonade
- Champagne or other bubbly (we used prosecco)
- 5 thin slices of cucumber
When making individual drinks pour gin, Pimms and lemonade over ice in a tall thin glass. Fill to top with champagne. Garnish with cucumber.
Ingredients for a pitcher:
- 2 parts Pimms
- 3 parts gin
- 8 parts lemonade
- Champagne to taste
Mix ingredients in a pitcher. Stir with ice. Drink neat or with ice. Garnish with cucumber slices.