julia's kuku parties

Free Printable Party Envelope To Decorate

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The Sunday Before last we celebrated Maksi’s 3rd birthday. I suggested a train or lego theme and he said ” no mama, Balloon Party” so Balloon Party it was.

I created a simple invitation and a printable envelope for my crafty little monkey to decorate. He used watercolour crayons to make a little scribble swirl in each balloon and then I used a baby wipe to spread the colour a little more evenly around the balloon shape.

You can download your own printable envelope to decorate here.

If you would like to see more photos from Maksi’s big day you can head over to my instagram feed. or follow me @juliakukucouture

 

Julia xx

Venice Beach

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As you may know we are on holidays!

Venice was our first stop off the plane. It was perfect for jolting us out of our post flight (loooooong flight) slump.

Venice is colourful brash, loud and in your face. You can see almost anything there from muscle men pumping weights, families enjoying ice creams to Dr Marijuana who legally dispenses the  errm medicinal herb? to cure whatever ales you.

After our little walk around venice we were off to Anaheim to rest up for the onslaught of all things Disney.

I will be back with more photos as soon as I can.

 

Valentine’s Day – Heart Breaker Printable

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Maksi and i knocked these up the other day for his cousins and some of his little friends they turned out so cute. Hubby might even get one in his lunch box if he’s lucky.

I was really brave and let Maksi use some glitter to decorate the Heart Breakers, you could use stamps, paint, fingerprints you get the drift.

Print on regular paper, staple both sides leaving an opening at the top to fill with whatever your loves like. Then staple the rest of the heart and voila your done.

Cute, quick and super simple.

You can download them here

 

Juliax

5/52

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“A portrait of my children, once a week, every week, in 2013.”

Maksim: received so many lovely toys for christmas that I have had to start rotating them. This week it’s train week.

Leonid: Has been sitting himself up all week and grabbing at anything he can get his hands on.

Joining in with Jodi for her 52 project.

Sorry for my absence around these here parts. Life, business and my loves have been super busy. We are planning a few overseas trips this year. The first of which is only four short weeks away. We are going to the US and Canada.

We are big planners we have excel spreadsheet, boards on Pinterest and note books full of places we would like to go and delicious eateries we must visit.

I have also been reading lots of family travel blogs t0 find out how one would go about travelling with a 2.5 year old and a 10 month old. What have I learnt you ask? That it is going to be very interesting.

until next time

Julia xx

 

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“A portrait of my children, once a week, every week, in 2013.”

Maksim: riding his bike on the deck with thomas while waving to baby brother through the window

Leonid: Mastering finger foods

joining in with Jodi.

Julia xx

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    “A portrait of my children, once a week, every week, in 2013″

Maksim: Practicing

Leonid: Has done this a few times this week!

Julia xx

The Nursery + Weekly Happy Snaps

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Photo taken by this lovely lady.

( my cousin Julia is the one on the left)

On January three I was still recovering from a childless new years eve but never the less I managed to be excited about getting out of bed at six am. I was headed to The Nursery  in Canberra a super awesome one day photography workshop with the uber talented Tim Coulson.

I had read many blog posts about others experiences at The Nursery  and was hoping I would have the same photographic epiphany’s others had  and low and behold I did!

Tim made it seem so easy. I loved every minute of the day and am so glad I got this info whilst my babies are still so little. I will now be able to capture their lives and our journey together (gag) in a way that will be special and beautiful or as Aleks described my photos post The Nursery ” they are like those example photos you see on the macs in the mac store”

I still have a long way to go but I am super excited about developing this knew skill of mine.

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1.  Backyard fun

2. Leo was so sick this past week but still remained his quiet , sweet self

3. + 4. Crafty fun

5, Blankie

6. Cherry pie milk shake (whaaaat!) ice cream+ milk + cherries topped with crushed arrowroot biscuits

7. ” dis nummi mama….more”

8. This sort of thing happens on an hourly basis

 

Julia

I’m linking up with this beautiful lady.


The Beetle Shack

 

 

 

 

2/52

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“A portrait of my children, once a week, every week, in 2013.”

Maksim: Always completely engaged in whatever he is doing

Leonid: This poor bubba endured temps as high as 39 C this week and still he had so many smiles for us even in the high high summer heat

Linking up with the lovely Jodi here. 

Julia xx

It’s Christmas Again – Streken Bozik

It’s christmas again! So soon you say but yes it is christmas again in our home.

Bozik as we call it.

The traditional orthodox christmas celebrated on January 7 (based on the old Julian calendar)

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The celebrations for this christmas are much more subdued ( as we are still recovering from the last one) On Christmas eve Maksi helped make bread into various shapes (my family have always made dolls).

Then in the morning as is tradition in my family the kiddies received the baked dolls as gift.

Once we downed our little dolls we headed to church then onto lunch with the family.

Simple and lovely.

Do you have any simple traditions like this in your family?

Julia xx

 

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“A portrait of my children, once a week, every week, in 2013.”

Maksim: The hair, the eyes the face, many many things remain undone while I am lost in them

Leonid: Placid, calm, happy. Our little Bucky is always a ray of sunshine.

joining in with the lovely Jodi  and her 52 Portrait A Week project.

I am excited about this new project. I take a lot of photos but don’t have much to show for it in the way of printed photographs. I plan on creating a photo book at the end of the year for us to enjoy and also to give as gifts.

Julia xx

 

 

Have You Broken Any Resolutions Yet?

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Last night, New Year’s Eve was spent with family and friends.

We had a fantastic afternoon with the kids, playing in plastic wading pools and throwing colourful balls at each other.

We let Maksi stay up a little past his bed time before whisking both babies over to my parents place for the night so we could party child free until 12pm.

We were so excited to have a sleep in. We managed to sleep till 8:40! Which is something we have not done since before having children. Then we hurried out the door to pick up the babes because we really missed them.

I made a few resolutions before bringing in the new year but I think I may need to revise them to include some concrete things I want to check off my to do list this year.

I plan on not only making a list of my goals but also including strategies for achieving these goals.

Have you made any resolutions?
How are you going?

Julia xx

Happy New Year! Drinks! Resolutions?

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Happy New Year!

I Love this time of year because it feels like anything is possible like I could do anything, achieve anything.

2012 has been a big year for my little business but even bigger for my family with the addition of our newest design Leonid.

He has slotted into our family perfectly, he is mild mannered and almost alway content to just sit and watch Maksi’s antics.

Watching them together is just the best thing in the world. Maksi loves trying to make Leo laugh. He will jump up and down, pull funny faces or do just about anything to get his baby brother to look up at him and giggle.

I can’t wait to see their relationship evolve into a beautiful friendship.

I don’t really know what will happen in 2013, I feel like anything could.

I used to be a real control freak ( ok I still am a bit) but I used to be so sure of things I felt like i knew exactly what was going to happen and exactly how I would react to every situation but now I feel like I am surprised everyday. In a good way :)

I can’t wait to see what 2013 brings.

Drinks!

Aleks is loving Mojitos at the moment. He uses this recipe and they are totally delicious. He has been a little sick lately so we haven’t indulged in one of these for a while we have all the ingredients prepped and ready to go for tomorrow night and we can’t wait to indulge.

We are headed to Aleks brothers house with the babies for dinner. Then we will be dropping them off at the grandparents at bed time so we can PAAAARTY you know till exactly 12pm.

The most exciting part…….. the babies are going to sleep at my parent place so the next morning!!! We can get up at anytime we want. Woot Woot!! now thats what I call a party!!

Resolutions?

I do love a new years resolution. Just a few things that I feel will enrich mine and my families lives.

More special dinners on the deck with my loves

Long walks on my own, or with my babes

I want to do somethings for my self, like taking up crochet or just reading more

Learn more about my DSLR ( this one I already have a jump on I am going to The Nursery on Jan 3)

I have been doing a bit but I want to do more “home pre-schooling activities with Maksi”

and lastly I am going to dive head first into project life. I am great at taking lots of photos of my family and what we are up to but I haven’t printed many photo books, so I really want to do that in the new year.

Are you making resolutions this year?

Happy New Year to you and yours

See you on the flip side xx

Julesxx

;

Happy Snaps – Christmas

 

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I hope you all had a very merry christmas, did you?

We had a lovely christmas eve dinner at my parents place where we chased the kids around the house and talked about all the funny things Jingle got up to this year.

I’m always a little sad when christmas is over, but not Aleks he has dubbed me the christmas Nazi and is glad I will be giving it a rest for another year.

Bring on the New Year

Julia xx

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Christmas Eve Eve

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Yesterday we had a spare of the moment little christmas lunch with my brother and his family who are visiting from Melbourne.

There was lots of “splash splash”, cold drinks, yummy food and laughter.

Sometimes I think these casual little get togethers before christmas are better then the actual day because there are no real expectations and we can all just relax and enjoy.

I hope you have a very Merry Christmas and Thank you so much for coming here reading my words are looking at my pictures it really truly means the world to me.

Julia xx

 

 

In The Garden – We paint

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I can’t tell you how many times a day Maksi will come over and say “muma painting?” it’s so cute, makes me melt every time. I really wanted to have a go at making twig stars. So Maksi and I collected some on one of our trips to the park.

After we were finished painting them, I took to them with some garden shears to make them even then bound them together with string and hung them from the fire place.

When Maksi got up from his nap he ran over pointed to them and said “stars, bootiful”

Is there a cuter age then 2?

linking up with this lovely lady 

 


The Beetle Shack

Happy Snaps – This Week

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1. according to Maksi every morning must start like this

2. Maksi’s crazy hair

3. I gave his fringe a little snip and then cried

4. Teacher gift, a punnet of strawberries, you can download the printable here

5. we are calling it “the rat smile”

Hope you had a lovely week it has been a busy one here.

9 Handmade Christmas gift ideas + Free Printable Gift tag

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Today along with nine other awesome bloggers I am sharing a handmade Christmas gift idea, My contribution is #5 Homemade basil and some free printable homemade gift tags to add to your gifts, scroll down to check it out in full.

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I love that pesto is so versatile you will find yourself putting it on everything. Tonight I had it with pasta tomorrow morning with eggs and on pizza for dinner. Your family and friends will thank you for it. It lasts about three weeks in the fridge.

 

 

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If you would like some gift tags to finish off your gift then click here for some I prepared earlier.  FREE printable homemade christmas gift tags.

Julia x

 

 

 

 

Happy Snaps – The Weekend

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This weekend was super busy.

We celebrated, tried to keep cool, shopped and danced.

1. Local christmas fair

2. Cousins

3. Kiss Daddy, kiss Bucky

4. Maksi’s first Concert

 

How was your weekend?

x

Please excuse the way my blog looks, I tried to give it a reno but got a little stuck. I designed all the graphic elements myself but just need some help putting it all together if you know anyone who can help I would be very excited to hear from you. 

Happy Snaps – The Weekend

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If you know me you’d know that I have a bird phobia. It began in my early 20′s when I would ride my bike around my hometown and the magpies would swoop me. On one particular occasion I was riding my bike and swerved to avoid a swooping bird unfortunalty onto oncoming traffic. I wasn’t hit but it really scared me and the phobia has just gotten worse ever since.

Last weekend we decided to head to a duck pond. We got our bread out and started feeding the ducks but they just kept coming hundreds of them. I managed to last a few minutes but we had to give up before finishing all the bread we had for them.

I have been reading Ben and Duck to Maksi and Leo and they really love it so I wanted to try again.

This weekend we enjoyed a little picnic while I settled my nerves and then we went to a section of the pond where there were only a few small ducks and it was a huge success.

The babies loved it and I managed to last about 10 minutes and this time we finished all the bread we brought.

Do you have any phobia’s ?

x

Free Printable Christmas Gift Tags

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Today I am sharing these printables over at Chibirun.

I went a little less traditional this year.

You can download your free printables here.

If you are after something a little more traditional you can check out the Gift Tags I created last year here.

I have also released my customised christmas cards for this year on the website. If your looking for something a little more personal to send to your nearest and dearest head on over.

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Julia

 

xx

Happy Snaps – Is This The Final Summer of The Onesie ?

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Oh how I love a Onesie.

Why do they only go up to size 2?

Maksi is very tall but quite petite so maybe we will have another year maybe.

I can’t believe he is no longer a baby. I mean I literally can’t believe it.

I was out a few weeks ago looking for new boardies for Maksi and couldn’t find the size I needed 24-36 months So I asked a very kind looking lady in the store and she promptly told me that size is not in the baby section.

Not in the baby section!

I can’t believe it.

I bought the 18-24 month size :)

Jx

Leonid’s Christening

Last sunday we celebrated Leo’s Christening. He was perfect all day long only letting out a little wimpier when the minister gave him his little bath.

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At home before the christening
 
Macedonian Orthodox ceremony involves giving the baby a dunk in holy water, a little hair snip, blessing the cross given to Leo by his god parents and a visit to the private alter with the minister.
 
Then there was cake and dancing.
 
Jx

 

Cake by: Celebration cakes Stand from: Sweet Style

 

Leo’s Custom Christening Invitation

PhotobucketStationary by me : Kuku Couture Invitations

 

I love custom designing social stationary such as wedding, birthday and christening invitations.

I feel an overwhelming sense of pride in the fact that my design is going to be the first thing guests see that gives them a little hint of what the event will be like.

I also know that many people will keep these invitations as a keepsake of the event and therefore try my very best to provide exactly what the customer wants in terms of feel, look, mood.

This is not an easy process I really need to understand not only what their vision is for this particular event but also their loves, hates, favourites so I can get a real firm sense of their style and ensure that their/their family’s personality is perfectly reflected in the stationary.

Now when I am designing stationary for my own family you think this would be easy as obviously I know myself right? I know what I like? hmm apparently not.

I had so many ideas that I found it really difficult to sort them into the perfect invitation. I made many many many revisions but when I saw the final product I knew it was the perfect design for us.

Simple & Elegant thats what I wanted and I really love the way it turned out.

Jx

Also on the blog this week, Part 2- Printable Toddler Placemats, Primary Colours, Happy Snaps-Our Weekend

Happy Snaps – Belated Weekend

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I am so sorry about my absence around here. We are having Leo’s Christening this sudnay and I have been running around like a mad woman trying to finish all the tiny little things that I have left till the last possible minute.

1. Leo is a very chilled out baby but has been a little sick this week. I have been popping him in the sink while I work in the kitchen and he just spends the whole time with his eyes fixed on me and fingers in his mouth.

Everyone keeps telling me I should give him a dummy for the finger sucking problem but I am just not sure what to do. He doesn’t cry at all. So he doesn’t really need one and I just feel like I would be replacing one problem with another what would you do??

2. Leo is loving solids his favourite food is bananas

3. Chalk in the backyard I must make an outdoor chalkboard for him

4.Macro shot at The Grounds – have you been there? it’s the best!

5. This is his “Hello Ladies” look

6. And it works :)

7. Yum!

 

x

 

 

 

 

Toddler/Preschooler Basics – Free Printable Placemat Primary Colours

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Maksi has been so interested in learning to identify colours lately. He will pick up random objects run over and ask “wat colour dis”?

He loves his Pantone Colours book, he will often look for toys that match the colours in the book. This book is amazing for teaching colours as it shows several shades of the same colour.

We used these printables over a few days.

Day one: we look at the pantone book and found the colours on the placemat.

Day two: coloured in colour words

Day three: looked for the colours in magazines

Day four: we pasted the magazine clipping on the corresponding colours

Then onto the fridge it went.

If you would like to do this activity, you can download it here.

x

Spooky Mail – Free Printable

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Hi Friends,
My beloved newphew Harry moved to Melboune a few months ago and we are
missing him terribly.Maksi will often ask for him during the day and
when we go to my parents place he runsfrom room to room looking for him
it is heartbreaking.

I am hoping the move won't be permanent.

Harry Loves sending and receiving mail,
so I thought I would create a little stationary set Maksi could
use to send him some spooky mail in time for Halloween.

You can download your copy here.

Well Blogtober was going so well, but I have been a little slack this week as

I have been busy preparing for Leo’s christening which is coming up in two weeks.

Don’t forget to check out our Halloween Printable Puppet and

our Educational Toddler/Preschooler Placemats

Enjoy
x

Free printable Halloween Puppets

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I have never celebrated Halloween before, but now that I have babies and one in particular that loves getting crafty I’ll take any excuse I can to sit down at the kitchen table with him.

Maksi and I had lots of fun with these puppets.We decorated some paddle pop sticks with washi tape and glued on our spooky characters.

We made some stars, traced around our characters, talked about the colours on the puppets, gave them cute names and had lots of funny conversations with these spooky little guys.

Your can download your copy here.

Check back tomorrow as I have some more spooky printables to come.

x

Maksi Talk

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Last night Maksi built this, brought it over to us and said “castle”.

We were both so excited we stopped what we were doing scooped him up and smothered him with kisses.

here are some of the things he has been saying lately:

Mama

Tato (dad)

outside

your funny

I coming

I love you

boo (blue)

yayo (yellow)

I picture

colours

I want to paint

I want shower

bici

warta (water)

bucky (what he calls his baby brother)

square

tangle (triangle)

erkle (circle)

juice

numi (yummy)

yego (lego)

bye

see ya

It is Absolutly Adorable.

x

Don’t forget to check out my free printable placemats here 

 

Toddler/Preschooler Basics – Free Printable Placemat – Cutlery

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I am a primary school teacher. Did you know?
Now that Maksi is getting a little older and so very keen to learn,
I am working on teaching him lots of the basics
children should know before starting school.

Shapes, colours, numbers, letters, basically improving his vocabulary
and understanding of the world around him and preparing him for
a life of learning.

The above printable is the first in a series of printables
I will be doing here on the blog aimed at improving and expanding
the vocabulary of toddlers and preschoolers.

The placemats are intended as open ended activities.
Here are some suggestions to get you started.

Points of discussion
  • how many forks, knives, spoons can you see?
  • what colours can you see?
  • what is cutlery?
  • how many pieces of blue cutlery can you see etc?
  • how many pieces of cutlery are there altogether ?

Activity
  • match colours using pencils etc
  • match cutlery (concrete materials) to pictures
  • trace over numbers
  • draw a line from the corresponding number to the picture
  • write the appropriate number in the circle
  • addition 1+2+3 =

You can download your copy here.

This is a lovely book to accompany this activity :
Spork by Kyo Maclear/Isabelle Arsenault
If you’re on Instagram and using these printables I would love to take a peak.  Snap a picture and use #kukubasics 

Julia x

 

What Maksi’s Reading Right Now

Maksi books

Alphabet Ice Cream ,The Game of Mix And Match, Pantone Colours, Big Book Of My World,Each Peach Pear Plum

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There is no doubt that Maksi loves books, we even had a bookworm themed birthday. Lately his favourite thing to do is to flick through books pointing out and saying the things he recognises. It is beyond cute.

What books are your little ones loving?

Happy Snaps – The Weekend

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On Sunday Maksi had his first swimming lesson. He listened carefully to instructions, Attempted everything that was asked and had lots of fun. We were so proud :)

Later that day we went to visit the babies God parents. The bread that you see is called is called a Pogacha . It is traditional to have one of these when celebrating religious occasions.

In this case we were inviting them to little Leo’s christening.

Hope you had a lovely weekend.

In His Lunchbox

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grapes, tomatoes, vegemite & avocado mountain bread swirls

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cheese, pretzels, sultanas, fruit, risotto

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tomatoes, cheese, strawberries, fish fingers

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rice crisps, yogurt drops, jam mountain bread swirls, sugar free banana donuts, sultanas

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grapes, banana bread, vegetable ravioli, banana, sultanas

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kifli, chevapi, sugar free banana donuts, strawberries, roasted potato chips
 
These are some of the lunches Maksi has been having lately. He usually has cereal, eggs and or toast for breakfast and a toddler friendly version of whatever we are eating for dinner. 
 
Would love to hear what you are feeding your toddler I’m on the lookout for new ideas. 
 
x

Home Lust – On The Deck

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Aleks has declared this the summer of the deck. We love entertaining outdoors and now that Maksi is able to run and play on his own we will be using our deck a lot more.

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On The Kitchen Table – We Do Art!

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Today in Sydney the weather was miserable. It rained the wind blew and the sun did not shine. But that didn’t stop us from having our own crafty fun.

We drew inspiration from The Forest by Marc Martin.The story starts in a lush green forest that is then cut down to make way for skyscrapers. The story is aimed 5+. But the perfectly simple watercolour illustrations had me so I had to get it for Maksi.

Turns out it was just perfect for him.

Maksi is at the stage where he is a cute little sponge. He parrots everything we say and is developing a sharp memory. We talked about the colour green, looked at green lego and paint. Looked at the trees and pointed to the trees in our backyard. Talked about the city and all of it’s colours. Looked at the way the illustrations were made and then experimented with our own watercolours.

Once daddy came home, Maksi was able to tell him about the Forest, it’s green trees, colourful city and point to the tree he painted.

Talking babies are the best.

It’s All About The Clothes – The Beginning

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Hello Friends,

This is one of my favourite photos from my childhood. I am on the right and My cousin Julia is on the left. We were celebrating new years eve at a relatives house with our parents. It was the 90′s

I love it because well we look so happy. I also love what we are wearing. It is obvious we started off with cute ruffle skirts and matching jumpers but then as the night went on we added some mismatched layers.

We look so casual and comfortable.

Which is just the look I am going for these day’s I am in the midst of building a new wardrobe as I feel most of my clothes are a little too loved and I want to add some more current pieces before Summer hits.

I do most of my shopping online these day’s

These are my current favourite places to shop/peruse

Gorman, Anthropologie, Modcloth,Madewell, Seed

where do you shop?

I would love to check out some of your favourites.

x

 

 

In The Garden – How To Make a Terrarium

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Hi There,
 
This morning I woke up early so I could do some design work before my babies woke. I don’t usually do this but the forecast promised beautiful weather and I didn’t want to miss it.
 
Once I had the kids up, dressed and fed we headed to the beach for a quick play in the sand and pre nap snacks.
Once home I popped both boys into bed checked and replied to emails did a little more design work.
 
Then headed out to the garden.
 
I have been meaning to make a terrarium for a while now and today was finally the day.
 
You can make a terrarium in almost anything. I chose a little vase I bought from the cutest little home wares and cute kiddy things shop in Cronulla called Char Bella.
 
What you need.
Container, pebbles, potting mix, plant.
 
First line the bottom of the container with a small amount of pebbles. This allows for good drainage. Then add a good organic potting mix before placing your plant inside the container.
Finally top with more pebbles, ornaments or anything you like and volia you have a cute little Terrarium.
This will not last forever and if you want the plant to survive you will eventually 
need to re pot it.
Usually 4-6 weeks is a good time frame.

x

 

Fab Free Fonts Loved By Kuku Couture

Hello friends,

I hope you had a lovely day. I spent the day working, playing with my babies and Enjoying food with friends.

I thought I would share some of my current favourite fonts with you. They are all free. Just google the name and you will get a link to download.

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Julia x

Happy Snaps – The Weekend

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Saturday was miserable out so we spent the day eating good food and napping on the couch. On Sunday we packed a little picnic and headed for Coogee. The weather was glorious and lots of fun was had.

x

Happy Half Birthday Leonid

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He is

six months old today!
a champion eater
a super sleeper
always happy
calm
placid
beautiful
LOVED

xx

The Eclectic Collector Look – Yep That’s Us

Hello Friends,

As I have mentioned we are currently working on decorating our home. I have been doing lots of research online (many many valuable hours on Pinterets), Scouring various magazines, visiting funky stores and talking to friends.

People are always asking us what look are you going for or what is the feel you are trying to achieve and I just didn’t know how to explain it. Basically I don’t want things to be too matchy matchy and I want to just be able to buy beautiful things without to much concern about everything going together.

I was looking at Apartment therapy tonight and found this post and now I have a name for the style we are tying to achieve in our home. The Eclectic Collector look ( sounds fancy does’t it)

Here are some beautiful images from the above post.

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Over the coming weeks I hope to share pictures from parts of my home as we finish off different bits and pieces.

What is your decorating style?

Julia xx

 

 

 

 

 

In the Kitchen – Rhubarb Danishes

 

Hubby and I spend most of our weekends with a coffee in our hands watching our big boy playing in a park somewhere In Sydney.

So last weekend I decided to make some yummy treats to go with those coffees.

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These are so tasty, pretty and delectable you must try them.

 

Here is what you need to make these bad boys

roasted rhubarb (2kg rhubarb trimmed, rinsed and cut into 3cm pieces)

crème pâtissiére

850g sugar

1 tsp vanilla extract

For the dough I used this croissant dough recipe but have also made these danishes with store bought butter puff pasty

which is very tasty and a super quick alternative.

This is how you put it all together

Sprinkle the rhubarb with the sugar and bake until soft.

Cut the dough into squares. place on lined trays and refrigerate for 10minutes.

Remove the squares from the refrigerator and working with one square at a time fold each corner to meet the centre pressing down firmly.

Place 1 1/2 tbsp of the crème pâtissiére into the centre of each folded square and top with 4 pieces of rhubarb.

brush the top of each one with egg was and place in the oven.

following the baking instructions for the croissant dough or store bought pastry.

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& voila They were a hit
Julia

In The Garden – With Baba & Dedo

When my parents were young children living in Macedonia they literally lived off the land. Planting, harvesting, raising stock, slaughtering animals for their dinner, making their own bread, butter and cheese they did the lot. They actually lived the whole sustainable living thing that many Australians are now trying to achieve in their suburban backyards. ( according to them it is not as glamorous as you’d think )

Whilst most of these things they left behind they have always maintained a vegetable garden. Often as a child my mum would send me out into the garden to collect herbs and veg for the evenings dinner. I am thrilled that they are now sharing this with Maksim.

At the beginning of spring each year they bring all their gardening tools to our backyard and we have a little meeting about how our garden is going. What grew, what didn’t and then we decide what to plant next.

This year Maksi helped.

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They talked to him about what we would be planting and the meals we would make with our produce.

and he listened! when we walk around our garden now he can actually name the plants.

We are currently growing, lettuce, tomatoes, peppers, zucchini, eggplant, spinach, thyme, oregano, mint, parsley and have plans for a few more things.

What are you growing? Do your kids help out?

Julia xx

 

 

 

Fun Spring Things I Have Bought Lately.

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The weather is getting warmer and now that I am no longer pregnant it is time to update my wardrobe and home for the summer months.

We have been in our new love shack for about three years but for most of that time we have been busy having babies. So now that #2 is almost six months we are spending some time looking for furniture, planting veggies in the garden and sprucing up difference parts of our home.

I am loving neon accessories, they are giving all of last years summer clothes a funky of the moment feel.

1.2.3.4.5.

How are you preparing for the warmer months?

Juliax

Yummy books I am drooling over while on 12WBT

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I am doing the 12wbt challenge and am at about half-way and have lot 5kg. Hubby and I are both doing the program. Mainly to loose a little bit of baby weight and also to give our eating and exercise habits a much needed overhaul.

On the whole we are usually quite healthy eaters but probably don’t do as much exercise as we should and need to keep a bit of an eye on our portions.

I love to cook! and whilst the 12wbt does provide us with lots of variety and the meals are mostly tasty. I miss looking through cookbooks or Pinterest and trying something I have discovered. I have a whole bunch of things I have pinned/bookmarked that I will be giving a go once we have completed 12wbt.

Here is a couple I am dying to try.(minus the hare)

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The Hare Tagine has lots of yummy things in it like bacon, juniper berries, chill  paprika, bay leaf and chorizo. Which i think would be super tasty even without the Hare. ( I’m not a big fan of meat)

Have you ever had to take stock of your eating and exercise habits?

Julia xx

Happy Snaps – The Weekend

Saturday

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The Weekend was spent in the lovely Sydney sunshine, At the supermarket,a quick swing at the in-laws and some time in our garden

 

Hope you had a lovely weekend.

 

Julia x

Blogtober

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Hi Friends,

I guess your wondering what this is all about. Well I have been thinking for a while that I have been a bit hopeless with my blogging.  I started this blog mainly to promote my business Kuku Couture Invitations (shameless plug) but since then I have fallen in love with the whole blogging community that I have become apart of.

I am a little confused about what direction I should take with my blog and my blogging has been very inconsistent because of this as I have spent most of my allocated blogging time thinking about what to do. You see I would still like to use my blog to promote my business to brides and mummies and also share personal stuff but I am just not sure at the moment how I am going to go about doing that. Suggestions anyone?

I am planning a blog reno soon and along with that I will be getting a separate url for my blog. In an effort to improve the consistency of my blogging I am going to blog everyday in October. I am hoping this will breathe some new life into my blogging, setup some good blogging habits and help me discover a new direction for my blog.

If your a blogger have you ever had to rethink your blog?

Maybe this is just the thing to jumpstart your blogging too.

I’ll be using #blogtober when posting my blog posts on Twitter and Instagram if you’d like to join in please use the hashtag I’d love to check out your posts.

Julia x

 

Happy Snaps

Saturday

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Sunday

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Cronulla spring Festival, Maksi and his Teta, Cousins, The Twins, Maksi eating his first ice cream cone, Music concert ( the last picture is most indicative of Maksi’s performance)

I am really enjoying capturing our weekends this way, it is such a great way to reflect on how we spend our precious family time.

How did you spend your weekend?

 

Julia x

 

Happy Snaps – Father’s Day Weekend

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Father’s Day

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Saturday was spent at the park with a packed lunch. Then on sunday we celebrated daddy with kisses, brekkies and lots of cuddles.

Julia x

 

How To Make The Tastiest Triple Choc Bundt Cake Ever!

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Hello Friends,

Two weeks ago I made the tastiest birthday cake I have ever eaten.

35 others also ate this cake and when polled 9/10 said it was also the best they have ever had.

So it must be good right?

I wasn’t going to share the recipe here as it is just too good but when I heard about The Big Cake Bake, I thought it would be ok to divulge my recipe for a good cause :)

So here it is,

The Tastiest Tripe Choc Bundt Cake Ever

 

Ingredients

  • Cake

    • 1 cup  unsalted butter, melted
    • 1 1/2 cups sugar
    • 4 large eggs
    • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
    • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
    • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
    • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
    • 1 teaspoon baking soda
    • 1 teaspoon coarse salt
    • 1/2 cup chopped semisweet chocolate
    • 1 cup buttermilk
    • icing sugar (for dusting)
  • Chocolate Sauce

    • 1 cup finely chopped unsweetened chocolate
    • 1/2 cup sugar
    • 1/3 cup unsalted butter
    • 2/3 cup heavy cream

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 160 degrees. Grease a 12-cup Bundt pan.
  2. To make the cake, in a large bowl, cream together the butter and sugar. Beat in the eggs, one at a time, and the vanilla. Scrape down the sides of the bowl.
  3. In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, cocoa, cinnamon, baking soda, and salt. Toss in the chopped chocolate.
  4. Into the butter mixture, alternately add the flour mixture and the buttermilk.
  5. Spoon the batter evenly into the Bundt pan and smooth the top of the batter. Bake for about 55 to 60 minutes, or until a cake tester or a toothpick inserted into the cake comes out clean. Let the cake cool in the pan briefly. Turn out onto a cake plate to cool completely.
  6. For the Chocolate Sauce, place a heatproof bowl over a pot of simmering water and add ingredients and stir to melt and combine.

To Serve

Dust cake with icing sugar. Cut a generous slice and top with Chocolate sauce and ice cream.

 

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If one yummy cake recipe isn’t enough and I’m sure it’s not.

Germaine over at Chibi Run is sharing the recipe for this Knock Your Socks Off Lemon Drizzle Cake!

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& Tamsyn over at Max and Me is sharing this Amazing Chocolate & Raspberry Pavlova Decadence

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for the cause.

Don’t forget to check out our free printable Father’s day card/craft here.

Julia x

 

Free Printable Father’s Day Card For The Kids To Make

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As you might know Maksi loves books or as he calls them “book book” every evening when he hears the front door open he knows Daddy is home and rushes down the hall with a “book book” for daddy to read.

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One of their most recent favourite books has been Socks by Nick Sharrat and Elizabeth Lindsay and this was the inspiration for Our father’s day card. This book is absolutly socktastic!

We decorated our sock by monoprinting and then used some cardboard to scrape of all of the excess paint but you could colour, paste or do anything else you or your little one’s dream up to make their card special.

We also included a few little characters from the book on the inside and some lovely coupons for daddy to redeem when he sees fit.

The cute washi tape is from Chibirun

If you would like to make your own father’s day card download the printables here.

Julia x

 

Maksim’s Bookworm Party- Part 2 The Goodie Bag

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I don’t know about you but I still get so excited about the lolly/ goodie bags at birthday’s especially since Maksim is to young for most of the contents. Which mean hubby and I get to raid it once we put him to bed.

Here is what we put in the goodie bags Maksi gave to his little friends.

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What do you put in your kids goodie bags?

Whats the best thing you have ever found in a goodie  bag one of your kids or you received?

Maksim’s Bookworm Party – Part 2 The Party!

 

Last Sunday we had Maksim’s 2nd Birthday and despite the weather and the quick location change (from outside on the deck to inside our living area) Little Maksim had a most fabulous time. Check out his adorable invitation here and my inspiration for his party here.

 

Maksim's Bookworm Party www.kukucoutureinvitations.com.au

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Maksim's Bookworm Party www.kukucoutureinvitations.com.au

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Maksim's Bookworm Party www.kukucoutureinvitations.com.au

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Maksim's Bookworm Party www.kukucoutureinvitations.com.au
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Maksim's Bookworm Party www.kukucoutureinvitations.com.au

Well I hope you enjoyed our party pics I will be doing a post on the worm craft we did and the contents of The goodie bags Maksi gave out to his little guest very soon.

Maksim is such a social little boy he was smiling from ear to ear the entire party which made all the time preparing for the party worthwhile.



Apple & Worm Cupcakes + cake topper from The Cupcake Princess
All printables By Kuku Couture

Julia xx

Maksim’s Bookworm Party – Part 1 The Invitations

This past Sunday we celebrated Maksim’s 2nd birthday with a bookworm themed party!

Despite the cold weather Maksi had lots of fun with his little friends and cousins.

For his invitation we had a little photo shoot at the library you can read about it  and my inspiration for his party here.

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I hand stamped the date to give it a more authentic feel. The little tag you see there had the url of Maksims blog and was the most talked about addition to his invitation. Check it out here it is beyond cute.

Stay tuned for the rest of the pictures from Maksi’s party in the coming days.
Julia xx

 

 

Happy Snaps

On Saturday

 

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strolling along cronulla beach, passing Maksi’s beloved swings, coffee at Grind, play time, pre-nap kisses. 

And that was our saturday in #therealshire

Julia x

Tiny Food For Tiny People – Mini Bagel Sliders

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I know I know this is the second donut shaped treat I have brought you this week, but hold off on the Weight Watchers membership this one is healthy.

Last night we had homemade pizza for dinner (because I am a domestic goddess like that) and today I have some left over dough which I am planning on using to delight hubby with flat bread tonight.

But before that I decided to use some of it in my donut maker, genius right! (substitute donut tin or simply roll into donut shapes) an volia you have adorable little, I am calling them bagel sliders.

I used this pizza dough recipe from MasterChef.

These are perfect for the little ones or a light entrées for your guests.

You can put absolutely anything in them and they are just so cute.

Maksi, Leo and I and heading out for a playdate in the park today and I have made this for Maksi’s  lunch, I am thinking I will make a whole batch of these over the weekend for the week ahead.

 

Have a Lovely Weekend,

 

Julia xx

 

 

Soft On Instagram

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Soft: cheeks, kisses, curls & book

 

I love the way instagram lets you share the ordinary in such a beautiful way.

Are you on instagram?

Follow me @Juliakukucouture

Julia x

Old Fashioned Buttermilk donuts (baked not fried) + Free Printable Food Flags

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I have recently become a little obsessed with donuts there are so many different flavours and cooking methods and I think that mini donuts  are just look so darn cute. I really want to make some donuts for Maksi’s birthday so I have been on a mission looking for the perfect donut recipe and after several trials I have found one.

This recipe makes donuts that are light and fluffy, but the best bit is they are baked not fried but every bit as delicious as their deep fried counterparts.

Ingredients:

1 ¼  cups all purpose flour

1 cup self-raising flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

½ teaspoon baking soda

½ teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg

½ teaspoon salt

1 large egg

½ sugar

½ cup buttermilk

1 tablespoon unsalted butter, melted

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Icing sugar for dusting

 

Method:

In a large bowl, mix together the flours, baking powder, baking soda, nutmeg and salt. In another large bowl, using an electric mixer beat the egg and sugar until pale in colour. Add buttermilk melted butter and vanilla and beat until well blended. Add the flour mixture and beat until it comes together into a soft dough. Cover and refrigerate the dough for 30 minutes.

 

Baking :

Now there are several ways to bake these, I am using a donut maker, other wise you can use a donut tin, muffin tin or simply roll the dough into donut shapes and bake in the oven.

If baking in the oven set oven temperature to 160 degrees cooking time approx. 12minutes.

Once cooked dip the top of the donut into melted butter and then using a fine mesh sieve sprinkle icing sugar and serve.

Top with our fun food flags you can download them here

Makes about 12 donuts.

Julia xx

My Farmers Market Haul

Most wenedays I bundle up the babies and head to the Entertainment Quarter in Sydney for their farmers market. I am not much of a meat person so I get very excited about fresh produce.

Cutting into a fresh carrot or zucchini from a farmers market is whole new experience they are nothing like their supermarket cousins.

Here is my haul from this week

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And here are some of the things I will be trying over the next few days

Caprese Tart  Zuccini Chips Roasted Vegetable Strudel, Pumkin donuts, Sweet Potato Soup

I have made the Caprese Tart and the donuts before and both were super delicious.

 

Julia xx

 

 

Geometric Paper Lanterns

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So I popped into Ikea this morning in search of some jars to help organise my kitchen pantry and was surprised to see these beautiful paper Lanterns. I am thinking about using them for Maksim’s birthday and then putting them up in his room. They would be lovely as a backdrop for a wedding also.

Julia

Maksim Is Turning Two And We Are Having A Bookworm Party!

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You can find all the links on my Pinterest board here.

 

I know every parent says the same thing but really I can’t believe he is going to be two, but at the same time I feel like he has been with us forever. I can’t remember life without him.

Well thats the gushy stuff over with, now onto the fun bit, planning his party.

Last year picking a theme was so easy ( you can check out his 1st birthday here) but this year was a little more difficult I guess because he is a little older now and into more things.

I went with the bookworm theme as books have alway been his toy of choice, he loves lego, mobilo, puzzles and lots more but books hold his attention for the longest period of time.

On one of our trips to the library I took my camera along to get a photo for the cover of his invitation, most of them looked like this.

 

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But I did manage to snap a single shot where he is in focus and standing still.

As usual when planning something I created a Pinterest board where I have been collecting bits of inspiration for Maksim’s birthday you can check it out here.

I can’t wait to share the invitation with you it is adorable :)

 

Julia xx

Happy Anniversary- It’s been three lovely years

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It has been three years to the day since I married the love of my life. Since then our love has created two beautiful children Maksim 22 months and leonid 2.5 months.

Each and everyday I feel thankful

Happy Anniversary

Julia xx

Rainbow Themed Wedding Inspiration

I have always loved and had an extreme curiosity about rainbow themed weddings. Most people believe that if a bride chooses a rainbow theme they are being brave, others would love to have this colour scheme for themselves but feel that they are just not able to pull it off.

Despite all this I really think it is one of the easiest themes to achieve. You could go all out with rainbow coloured maids, shoes or accessories , or keep it subtle with flowers, reception decor and stationary.
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 Colour Splash Invitations by Kuku Couture, Bright Maids, Boho Headpiece, Rainbow Umbrella Photo idea, Macaroon Tower (via pinterest) , Tie, Flower Girl

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Colour Splash wedding stationary suite by Kuku Couture Invitations

Julia xx

 

Diamonds and Macaroons Oh My

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Image Source

Diamonds and Macaroons Oh My! could it get any better? What a fabulously delicious image. It’s a great idea to do a little research before your wedding day or other special event for some fab photo ideas.

Julia

DIY Paper Fortune Cookie Favours

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I love these simple and sweet paper fortune cookie favours. You could use them as a simple way to thank your guests and wish them good fortune. Featured here on Once Wed.

Julia xx

Paper Cake Toppers

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I love how easy it is to Jazz up a simple cake with some paper cake toppers. When ordering invitations from us we can design some co-ordinating toppers for your special event.

Julia x

Quirky Wedding Favours

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These pin favors are so clever.

To see more from this charming backyard wedding head over to Twofootcreative

Julia

All that Glitters is Gold Wedding Cake

I am currently working on a Gold glitter custom wedding design and was looking for inspiration on Pinterest when I spotted this cake masterpiece by Kristine Bender by K Rose Cakes it would be perfect for what the couple I am working with is planning.

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 Image via weddingchicks.com

Julia xx

DIY Mason Jar Centrepiece

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Image via designsponge.com

This is so simple yet so effective, spray paint a mason jar and fill with flowers and volia you have a funky centrepiece for any special event or for the home.

Jullia xx

 

 

 

Bundt Birthday Cake

Maksi is turning two in August and i am starting to think about what I am going to do for his party. I love the idea of making his cake every year, and would like something simple and beautiful. When I spotted this Bundt Cake on the Designsponge.com I thought it would be absolutely perfect with some paper pretties on top.

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…and who knew they came in so many shapes check them out at Williams-Sonoma

Julia xx

Vintage 1950s Wedding Dress – Something Old – Fifties Ivory Tulle and Lace Tea Length Wedding Dress

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I love this Gorgeous 1950′s dress (from Wild Honey Pie on Etsy) Tea length dresses have become so popular this year, hand can give you a fun fresh look for your wedding day.

To see more Tea Length wedding dresses check out my Board on Pinterest. 

Julia

xx

Monogram Wedding Invitations/Inspiration Board

 

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I love the Simplicity of Wedding monograms and the way a font can convey a particular feeling.

Mod Monogram Wedding Stationary by Kuku Couture Invitations, Monogrammed Wedding Dress what a romantic way to customise your wedding dress, Monogram Cookies these would perfect as wedding favours, Monogram wax seal necklaces  super special keepsake for bridesmaids.

Julia xx

 

Fun Filled Party Favours

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These Party Favours by www.makeit-loveit.com are so cute and just so versatile. They would be great for any type of party, you could coordinate them to your theme by using different papers and fillings.

I think they would be lovely filled with confetti or rose petals for a wedding.

Juliaxx

Birdcage Wedding Invitations

A while ago I had the pleasure of working with a lovely couple who wanted a Birdcage themed wedding invitation that included a photo from their engagement shoot.

When looking for inspiration I as usual turned to Pinterest and created a Board with BirdCage themed Wedding Inspiration, which you can take a look at here.

This Wedding Cake was my main source of inspiration I love the intricate lace like pattern and the simplicity of it.

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The bride is a vet nurse and requested that no birds be locked in cages so we unlocked the cages and came up with this stunning invitation.

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Available here

We also created this one without a photo

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Available here

Julia xx

 

DIY Bracelets

 

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I Love these little DIY Bracelets and there are so many reasons to make them, gifts for friends, Bridesmaids, Flower Girls or mum or a perfect rainy day craft activity with the kids or as embellishments for gifts.

Tutorial here at www.loveandrosen.com and here at www.sweet-verbena.blogspot.com.au

Neutral Doily Wedding Inspiration Board

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Doily Love Wedding Invitation by Kuku Couture, Doily Wedding Cake, Handmade Clutch Purse, Pretty Doily Table Scape,Doily Wedding, Favour, Doily Medallion Necklace, Gown

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You Can see our entire wedding collection here on our website.

 

Juliax

Statement Necklaces By Doloris Petunia

I Love these intricate statement necklaces they have been handcrafted in the U.S with stunning Swarovski Crystals Photobucket
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To see more of these fabulous jewels check out Doloris Petunia’s Etsy Store.

 

Julia

Royal Style

Kate Middleton looked amazing in a stunning Jenny Packham dress at the “Our Greatest Team Rises” Gala dinner at London’s Royal Albert Hall

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Kate’s elegant knotted bun showed off the elaborate design of her teal Jenny Packham dress.

see more here 

Julia xx

Something Blue With A Dash Of Red Inspiration Board

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Red Monogram Wedding Invitation By Kuku Couture Invitations

Flower Girl dress with Sparkle and Navy Sash

Groom with blue bow tie and suspenders

Navy blue bridal Party 

Navy stripe Table scape

Bouquet

Sash with rosette 

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Red Heart Monogram Wedding Stationary Suite in Navy.
This invitation is classic with a modern twist.

 

 

 

Pink Pretties For your feet

I am loving this romantic hue this week and thought I would show you some pretty pink wedding shoes I am coveting at the moment.

These would be great for your big day, your bridesmaids, or just a special night out.

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Right Column 1, 2, 3

 

 

For The Love Of Pink Wedding Inspiration Board

Today’s inspiration board comes to you in a romantic shade of Pink.This delicious colour is so easy to incorporate into your wedding day from the cake, to bridesmaid dresses. It is suitable for anytime of the year.

Enjoy the prettiness.

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Swinging From The Chandeliers Wedding Invitation by Kuku Couture InvitationsPink BloomsBridal PartyRuffle CakeEarringsSparkling PunchChandelier

Featuring one of our newest wedding suites Swinging From The Chandeliers

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Julia xx

Romantic Wedding Gown Love

I spotted this stunning Gown over at www.oncewed.com and had to share it here. This Dress is by amazing designer Jenny Packham you can check out her bridal and ready to wear collections here.

Now onto the prettiness this dress is pure vintage glam, I love all the amazing detailing and the pink hue perfectly complements the romantic location.

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To see more from this stunning wedding check out all the pics at www.oncewed.com

 

Introducing Our New Look Wedding Stationary Section!

Our Wedding section has had a total revamp over the past few months.

We now have beautifully photographed stationary suites. Our suites can be customised to coordinate with any colour theme.

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Over the next few weeks we will be adding lots of new and exciting designs. You can check out the new look wedding section here.

We also love it when Brides inspire us to create custom Wedding stationary. Please email us at info@kukucoutureinvitations.com.au or follow the link

Julia xx

Sunny Yellow Wedding Inspiration

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Introducing My Latest Design Baby Leonid + 5 Tips For Taking Beautiful Newborn Pictures Whilst In Hospital

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Baby Leonid was born on the seventh of April at 9:27am weighing 4.2 kilos, 52cm long

He is already a champion sleeper and feeder and his big brother Maksim is totally in awe of him. We have been spending lots of time just loving him.

 

While I was in hospital I really wanted to take some special simple pictures of my little man to remember his first moments, so before he was born I did a little research on newborn photography and created a Photography Board on Pinterest you can check out here with lots of photography hints for newborns and lots more.

 

Here are the 5 tips I took with me:

1. Keep the flash off, 2. remove any clutter from around the baby, 3. get up close, 4. Open all the blinds to get as much natural light as possible, 5. Keep it simple, don’t bother with any props or fancy outfits just capture your baby in all their newborn splendour.

 

Julia xx

 

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