Tuesday, July 31, 2012

H&M Home

Oh how I wish H&M's Home Collection were available in the US. There are far too many pretty patterns and trinkets to fawn over. I'm especially diggin' their Feminine Bohemian line full of bright florals and sparkly things.

H&M Home

Monday, July 30, 2012

Essentials >> Bicycle wine picnic

We've spent a few weekends at Lake Chabot, a lovely park nestled in the hills of Castro Valley. The only thing missing has been some bikes to ride around the lake's expansive trails. I sold my bike a few years back so I'm in the market for a new set of wheels so we can spend the afternoon riding around and finding little nooks to have wine picnics.

necklace // hat // lace blouse // backpack // shorts // wine // mason jar meal // shoes // bicycle

Friday, July 27, 2012

Breakfast at Victory's No. 6 >> Apple Lemon with Cinnamon Muffins

While I was in school, I used to work as a barista at Starbucks {I can make the best cappuccino in town}. My favorite way to start a morning shift was with a short white mocha and first dibs on the pastry case. Having that morning routine for four years made it hard to wean myself off of morning pastries, but my wallet insisted that I cease and desist. These apple lemon muffins brought me right back to those coffee house mornings, their sweet apple cinnamon and crumbly exterior begging to be served with a hot cup of joe.

Recipe via Safeway.com
2 cups all-purpose flour
4 teaspoons baking powder
1 pinch salt
1/2 cup sugar
2 eggs, lightly beaten
10 tablespoons butter
1 tablespoon lemon zest
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1 cup milk
1 large Granny Smith apple - peeled, cored and chopped
1 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
Preheat oven to 425 degrees F (220 degrees C). Grease 12 muffin cups. {I used cupcake wrappers}

In a bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt. In a separate bowl, cream together the 1/2 cup sugar, eggs, butter, lemon zest, lemon juice, and milk. Mix the creamed ingredients into the flour mixture until evenly moist. Fold in the apples. Spoon into the prepared muffin cups.

Mix the 1 tablespoon sugar and cinnamon, and sprinkle over the tops of the muffin batter.
Bake 15 minutes in the preheated oven, or until a toothpick inserted in the center of a muffin comes out clean. Cool 1 to 2 minutes before turning out onto wire racks to cool completely.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

nail polish obsession

Right now I'm pretty obsessed with nail polish. Maybe it's the sunny weather and bright new hues that have been hitting shelves, but currently I can't stand seeing my nails being naked and have decided that a weekly self-manicure is mandatory. Here are my top picks {how crazy are you over that yellow polish? It's pretty much essential for summer outings}:

Top photo // 1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

an old world kitchen

Don't get me wrong, I LOVE our new house, but it's just that: it's so new. A part of me wishes that it were roughed up a bit: a squeeky floorboard here, brass doorknobs that are loose from 70 years of turning...little things that really give a building character. This darling kitchen I spotted looks like it has tons of old world charm, from the Moraccan tiled floor, to the built-in wine rack and coiled radiator tucked under the kitchen table; but then the modern neon Tolix chair just adds the pizzazz that makes me wish I could move in immediately.

Nuevo Estillo via the style files

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

modern calligraphy inspirations

I'm super stoked over my calligraphy starter kit that I picked up from Linea Carta at Renegade. My hope is to become skilled enough by next year so that I can hand address all of our wedding invitations! I love the playfulness of Linea Carta's lettering, and I hope to develop my own style full of flourishes, swoops and varied stroke weights. Here's some of my inspirations as I begin my lessons:

Lindsay Letters
Molly Jacques
Whoa Nellie Press
Meant to be Calligraphy
Plurabelle Calligraphy

Monday, July 23, 2012

Two Penny Blue blazers

I recently read that 79% of Americans said that when choosing one brand over another if price and quality were equal that they would choose the brand associated with a good cause. This speaks so true to me when I came across these blazers from Two Penny Blue. Even before I read the story behind the company I was drooling over their vivid hues and impeccable tailoring {and hello, adorable packaging!}. Their mission statement states that for every jacket purchased, a portion of the proceeds are donated to fund school uniforms for young girls in Africa. If you're going to be buying a jacket, why not help someone less fortunate receive a jacket too?? You can find out more about Two Penny Blue over here!

Two Penny Blue // Packaging photo from Matchbook Magazine

my renegade bounty

Market tote from Honey & Bloom, Calligraphy kit from Linea Carta, Grapefruit lemongrass soap from Prunella Soap, Painted leather bracelet from Son of a Sailor, Block print linen tote from Willowship, and hella business cards

Renegade was super fun this weekend! I met and chatted with a bunch of great artists and makers and talked business strategies with Matt. There's so many talented people who show their work there, and I captured a little snapshot of some goodies I bought! Can't wait for their holiday fair this winter!

Friday, July 20, 2012

Breakfast at Victory's No. 5 >> Breakfast banana split

It was pretty much the highlight of my life as a kid whenever my mom would take us to the local ice cream parlor for sundaes. So you can imagine my inner child squealing with delight when I came across this recipe on Pinterest for a breakfast banana split. That's right, a banana split that's acceptable for breakfast. I substituted the Greek yogurt for cottage cheese since we had a whole tub of it just chillin' in the fridge which I topped with berries, sliced almonds, and a drizzle of jam and honey all over a sliced banana. Voila! A tasty dessert inspired breakfast is served!

Photos by me!

Breakfast Banana Split, adapted from The Kitchn
makes 1 serving

1 ripe yet firm banana, peeled
1/2 cup Greek yogurt {I used cottage cheese}
2 tablespoons fruit jam or preserves
2 tablespoons sliced almonds or other nuts
Handful fresh berries or cherries
Drizzle of honey

Split the banana lengthwise and lay the two halves in a shallow bowl. Use an ice cream scoop to scoop out the yogurt and put it on top of the banana. Warm the jam in the microwave for 15 to 30 seconds or until it is very runny. Use a spoon to drizzle the jam and honey over the yogurt, and sprinkle the nuts over everything. Top with the berries or cherries, and dig in!

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Oh So Beautiful Paper

Oh So Beautiful Paper

So our housewarming invitations were featured on Oh So Beautiful Paper today. It's so lovely to be featured on a site that has the word "beautiful" tied in to it! Check out the feature over here! 

sf renegade craft fair

It's becoming a tradition for us to spend a summer afternoon at the Renegade Craft Fair in SF. It's a perfect place to sip on hemp beers, munch on gyros and take in the arts and crafts of tons of local makers. It's always such an incredible source of inspiration for me to see these small creative businesses thrive; it usually leads to talks with Matt {my unofficial CFO ;) } about the direction I'd like Victory Paper Designs to grow and makes me excited for the future. If you're in the Bay Area this weekend {or in any of the other 5 cities this summer} this needs to be on your to-do list. Here's a small {there are over 280 vendors!} sampling of this year's vendors:

1. Strawberryluna // 2. Homako // 3. Chewing the Cud // 4. rae dunn // 5. buluchu // 6. 3 Fish Studios // 7. Son of a Sailor // 8. Lemonbird

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Blogger + PC

If any of you frequent this blog on a PC you may notice that the layout has been messed up the past few days. Apparently this is an issue Blogger has been having with Simple Template layouts which several blogs use and hopefully it'll be fixed soon {please!}. If you're distracted by the mumbo jumbo of the messed up page, you can jump on a Mac or iPhone to read these posts as the blog is showing up perfectly fine on them. Please bear with me while Blogger fixes this issue. Thanks guys!

painted florals

I'm a big fan of imperfect art; forms that you can tell were executed with the human hand really adds a sense of warmth to a piece. I'm crazy about these painted florals from Lulu DK...kind of reminds me of a painting I could have done as a child, but much more fabulous and refined.

Lulu DK

Monday, July 16, 2012

gladiator sandals

This summer I've practically been living in my gladiator sandals. They're open and breezy without the "headed to the pool" appearance that a flip flop can give off. I can wear them with jeans, shorts, or dresses and they instantly give a polished finish to my summer wardrobe. A few on my radar I'd like to add to my growing collection:

Photo // 1  2  3  4  5

Friday, July 13, 2012

Breakfast at Victory's No. 4 >> Egg puff pastries with bacon and cheese

I love the ease of being able to throw a dish in the oven and not be stuck hanging out in the kitchen tending to a stove. This was the case with these egg puff pastries which I prepped the night before and threw in the oven for a few minutes the next morning. I got to go lay back in bed for a bit while mouth-watering scents of bacon and cheese filled the house. I must say, I had to hold myself back from devouring Matt's portion, they were that good. If you end up making this breakfast, it might be a good idea to make extras as they go quick.

Photos by me

Adapted from Chicken and Egg
Serves 4
1 sheet frozen puff pastry
5 eggs
4 ounces slab bacon or thickly sliced bacon, cut into 1/2 inch pieces
1/4 cup heavy whipping cream
8 tablespoons shredded Parmesan cheese
1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup grape tomatoes, halved lengthwise
1/4 cup sliced green onion (green part only)

Thaw the puff pastry according to the package directions. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Roll out the pastry on a lightly floured surface to a 12-inch square. Cut into four squares. Trim each square to about 5 1/2 inches. Place in the baking sheet.

Fold over and press 1/2 inch on each edge of the squares to form a rim. Using a fork, prick each pastry square inside the rim every 1/2 inch to keep the center of the pastry from puffing up. Whisk 1 of the eggs in a small bowl until frothy. Brush the pastry squares with the egg. Cover and refrigerate for 15 minutes.

Meanwhile, preheat the over to 425F. Cook the bacon in a medium skillet over medium heat for 6 to 8 minutes or until browned, stirring frequently. Drain on a paper towel-lined plate. Stir together the cream, 6 tablespoons of the cheese, the mustard, and pepper. Spread over the center of the puff pastry squares.

Bake for 8 to 10 minutes or until light golden brown. If the center has puffed, prick with a fork to deflate. Crack the remaining 4 eggs into small cups and pour one into the center of each tart shell. Sprinkle the eggs with the salt. Scatter the bacon over the eggs and arrange the tomatoes over the egg whites. Sprinkle the remaining 2 tablespoons of cheese over the egg whites and tomatoes. Top with green onion.

Bake for an additional 5 to 7 minutes or until the tart is golden brown, the egg whites are firm, and the egg yolks are soft.

Note: Much of the assembly of these tarts can be done the day before. The puff pastry squares can be prepared and refrigerated overnight. The bacon can be browned the day before and stored in the refrigerator, and the cream mixture can be prepared and refrigerated overnight too. This way you have a little extra time to enjoy your morning with your loved ones. Hope you have a wonderful weekend. -xo

Thursday, July 12, 2012

a few of my favorite things...

create // wear // home

create: These cloths from Link Collective are a simple and pretty way to gift a bottle of vino.
wear: Just because it's summer doesn't mean I like to show a lot of skin all the time. A dress with sleeves balances out that ratio nicely.
home: Emily Henderson's guest room makes me wanna pack my bags and ring her doorbell.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Gorjana deal at Refinery29

I stumbled across this deal yesterday whilst surfing the interwebs and thought it was just too good not to share with y'all. Refinery29 is offering this deal right now that when you spend $80 at accessories shop extraordinaire, Gorjana, you get $160 to shop with! And if you spend $120, you get $240! Their shop is filled to the brim with pretty little gems like bright colorblocked leather clutches, neon belts and neon trimmed wallets...I'm pretty sure it'll be easy to drop a few bones at this shop. This is not a sponsored post in any way, I just get really excited over pretty finds for a bargain! I might even use this voucher for my bridesmaids' gifts, who knows? ;)

Get the deal at Refinery29 here!


Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Mid-century color pops

One thing that's kinda a bummer about having our new home put together is that we don't get to ooo and ahhh over furniture anymore. Sure you can keep buying shoes and handbags to your heart's content, but you really can't have two sideboards in your dining room. It's a shame, 'cause this Portuguese furniture company, Matrioskas, has pieces with such stylish mid-century inspired shapes and pretty pops of color that all I can do is imagine throwing my Ikea desk out the door in liu of that mint green resin paneled beauty. Maybe somewhere down the road our paths will cross with these pieces...


Monday, July 9, 2012

How to pair beer and BBQ

It's undoubtedly BBQ season around here. Every weekend it seems we've been firing up the grill or heading over to friends' and families' homes for some good old fashioned cook-outs. There's nothing like a smokey BBQ and a frosty cold beer in hand to enjoy a summer weekend in my book. Now, I know beer gets a bad rep for conjuring up images of frat boys doing keg stands, but a good craft beer full of complexities and flavors will really compliment with those grilled meats deliciously. Here's a guide for your next BBQ:

Graphic by Victory Paper Designs

From eHow

Hamburgers: Pale Ale
The balanced hop and malt ratio blends well with the flexibility of hamburger condiments. Pale ales have a noticeable and refreshing bitterness that stands out if your burger has lettuce, tomato or onion on it. Try Stone Pale Ale or Sierra Nevada Pale Ale.

Steaks: Porter and Brown Ale
The heavy amounts of caramelized malt used to create porters and brown ales enhance the campfire taste of grilled steak. Sysak calls this the “comfort food effect”– the heaviness of the beer matches the heaviness of the steak. Look for Stone Smoked Porter or Rogue Nut Brown Ale. If you want something not as bold, Newcastle Brown Ale is a time-tested English alternative.

BBQ Sauce: Strong Ale and Amber Ale
Barbecue provides several options due to regional variations. Tomato-based barbecue sauces go well with American strong ales like Arrogant Bastard Ale, which Sysak says blends with the acidity of tomatoes. Vinegar based sauces from the Carolinas match better with mellower amber ales such as Stone Levitation Ale that provide a hop presence, but leave room for the vinegar bite to hit your palate.

Hot Dogs: India Pale Ale (IPA)
IPAs are known for their massive hop presence, with a strong bitter taste can add excitement to the typically bland hot dog and its condiments. Sysak says that IPAs can transform spicy foods, subduing the heat into a long-present cool burn on the back of the palate. So if an IPA is your selection, be sure to pick up some jalapenos and chili for your hot dogs. Try Stone IPA or Boston-based Harpoon IPA.

Veggies: Porters and Hefeweizens
Carnivores are not the only people who can enjoy a good pairing. Sysak recommends a heavy and complex dark beer for those who enjoy a meatless meal like a grilled Portobello sandwich. If you are dining on uncooked veggies, look for a German Hefeweizen like Spaten, Franziskaner or Erdinger Weissbrau. The prominent fruity tones of the wheat-based Hefeweizen will accentuate any vinaigrette dressing.

ps. how to pair wine and cheese

Friday, July 6, 2012

Breakfast at Victory's No. 3 >> Breakfast quesadilla

Hands down, Matt makes the best scrambled eggs around. Something about the way that he tends to them on the stove so that they're not overcooked and rubbery and not all ooey-gooey either; just the right consistency with cheddar cheese melted in within the last seconds of cooking. I jazzed them up a bit here and made them into a little Mexican treat for our morning! I'd like to say that I deliberately left the sausage out that the recipe called for in an attempt to make the dish more healthy, but in reality I was trying to shop too fast and completely skipped over the ingredient on my list. Oops. It's such a delightful mix of flavors that I'm sure it's just as tasty either way...

Breakfast quesadilla - adapted from AllRecipes.com
Makes 6 servings
1/2 cup Bob Evans® Maple Roll Sausage {I left this out}
2 (10 inch) flour tortillas
2 cups Monterey Jack cheese, shredded {we used cheddar 'cause we had a lot of it on hand}
2 large eggs, scrambled
1/4 cup green onions, diced
1/4 cup tomatoes, diced
Sour cream

{Photos by me}

Crumble and cook sausage until brown; drain and set aside. Place one flour tortilla in heated 12-inch skillet. Evenly sprinkle cheese over the top of tortilla; place scrambled eggs on top of cheese on one tortilla. {I actually just used one tortilla to have a fold-over pocket effect that also made the ingredients not as spread out} Evenly distribute the cooked sausage over the eggs. Allow cheese to melt. Top with diced tomatoes and green onions. Place second flour tortilla on top. Remove from skillet; cut into six equal wedges. Serve with guacamole, sour cream and salsa. Refrigerate leftovers.

Happy weekend, friends! xoxo

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Illustrated portraits

My heart is doing cartwheels over these illustrated portrait collaborations. So stunning. See them all here

Plain Collaboration

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Home of the Brave

Hulse Photography

My sister and her husband are US Marines. You may remember when I designed their wedding invitations for them last year. Today Justin is on a plane being deployed to Afghanistan. No matter what your political views are, let's not forget the courageous acts that these men and women do for us every single day. Freedom is a privilege, not a right. Tomorrow when we're out celebrating our nation's independence, remember these individuals who have and continue to sacrifice their lives for us. Come home safe, Justin. xoxo times a million -V.

Essentials >> Fourth of July

Some goodies for your outdoor entertaining this Fourth of July in patriotic shades of red, white and blue. {the football is junior's size so even I can fit my hand around it! Still won't change the fact that I throw like a girl though...} Happy Fourth!

01 // 02 // 03 // 04 // 05 // 06 // 07

Monday, July 2, 2012

Free Download: July desktop calendar

It was such a breeze to collaborate with my sister in last month's calendar that I'm collaborating with her again for July! This shot comes from a trip she took with her boyfriend to Bodega Bay. I love that in the Bay Area we can take beautiful, scenic day trips from mountains to beaches without much hassle. I have a feeling Matt and I will be spending weekends at the beach with these guys a lot this summer. Btw, if you get my lobster reference in the picture it's undisputed that you rule.

Photo by Saralyn Tsurumoto // Graphics by Victory Paper Designs

{terms and conditions}
This desktop calendar is free for personal use, not for commercial distribution. If you wish to blog about this download please link back to this page and not the downloadable image. Do not sell, distribute, or copy this image. Enjoy your calendar!
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