15 Dec

DIY bitters gifts | 100 Layer Cake

For those of you on the hunt for an easy but well-received DIY holiday gift this season (for Manhattan lovers, perhaps), bitters are the way to go. You can use them in cocktails, sodas, and to cook with. We made four different kinds here: meyer lemon, ginger orange, chocolate, and coffee bitters. Fondly Forever was there to capture all our bitter-making fun.

Here are the details if you’d like to try it out yourself. The concept is pretty simple…

You’ll need:

• 1 small lemon
• grain alcohol, such as Prairie Organic Vodka
• 15 drops gentian extract
• 1 teaspoon whole black peppercorns
• 1 (3-inch) cinnamon stick
• 1 (1-inch) piece fresh ginger, cut in half
• 2 whole allspice berries
• 3 whole cloves
• a small glass bottle

DIY bitters gifts | 100 Layer Cake | Photo by Fondly Forever

Instructions:

1. Using a vegetable peeler, remove lemon zest in strips, leaving the white pith behind.
2. Combine lemon zest and all remaining ingredients in a quart jar with a tight-fitting lid. Close and store at room temperature. Let steep 14 days, shaking the jar every other day. The longer you allow the bitters to brew, the stronger the flavor will become.
3. Strain alcohol from spices and store in a jar with a tight-fitting lid in a dark place.

DIY bitters gifts | 100 Layer Cake | Photo by Fondly Forever

DIY bitters gifts | 100 Layer Cake | Photo by Fondly Forever

Other flavors to try:

Orange Bitters:
• 12 parts orange peel, 2 parts gentian, 2 parts cardamom, 2 parts coriander, 1 part allspice, 1 part cloves

Lavender Bitters:
20 parts lavender, 6 parts orange, 2 parts vanilla, 1 part ginger

Coffee Bitters:
• 
10 parts coffee bean, 3 parts cocoa nib, 2 parts wormwood, 1 part orange, 1 part cinnamon; sweeten to taste with molasses

Chocolate Bitters:
• 
1/2 cup cacao nibs, 1 1/4 cups 101 proof bourbon, 6 cardamom pods, chopped, 1 cinnamon stick, 1/2 vanilla bean, scraped, 1 tablespoon gentian root, 1 tablespoon sarsaparilla, 1 teaspoon wild cherry bark, 1 teaspoon cassia chips, 1 teaspoon black walnut leaf, 1 cup 100 proof rye whiskey, 1/4 cup simple syrup

DIY bitters gifts | 100 Layer Cake | Photo by Fondly Forever

And since you can’t make a Manhattan without bitters, we’re sharing some tips on how to make the perfect one. It’s such a delicious beverage during the colder months of the year.

Now, of supreme importance are the quality of your ingredients. And by that we mean that your Manhattan will only be as good as the liquors you choose, so splurge a little if you can…

The Perfect Manhattan, 100 Layer Cake style

You’ll need:

• Good quality whiskey (We’re partial to Rye but Bourbon works well too. Hudson, Templeton, Whistle Pig, and even Bulleit are great choices.)
• Carpano Antica Formula vermouth
• Cherries in syrup, like Amarena Fabbri or Luxardo.
• Orange Bitters (if you decide not to make your own, Angostura are great too.)
• Lemon twist

You’ll also need a cocktail shaker, jigger, and citrus twister. And if you’re fancy, a sphere ice cube mold.

DIY bitters gifts | 100 Layer Cake | Photo by Fondly Forever

Instructions:

Combine 2 ounces whiskey, 1 ounce vermouth, 1 tsp of cherry syrup, and a splash of bitters in the cocktail shaker. Fill shaker halfway with ice and cap. Shake vigorously for at least 30 seconds or until the shaker feels cold.

Now put your ice cube in a fancy cocktail glass and strain your frosty beverage into the glass. Rub the rim of the glass with a lemon twist and add it to the drink along with 2 cherries. Give it a little stir and enjoy!

DIY bitters gifts | 100 Layer Cake | Photo by Fondly Forever

DIY holiday bitters | 100 Layer Cake | Photo by Fondly Forever

DIY bitters gifts | 100 Layer Cake | Photo by Fondly Forever

Is this not the loveliest holiday cocktail? Careful, they’re tasty but strong!

DIY bitters gifts | 100 Layer Cake

DIY bitters gifts | 100 Layer Cake

DIY bitters gifts | 100 Layer Cake

DIY bitters gifts | 100 Layer Cake

Here’s to the holidays!

Styling: 100 Layer Cake / Photographer: Fondly Forever

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12 Dec

Rich plum and navy wedding inspiration | Photo by Izzy Hudgins Photograpny | Read more -  http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=83135

You know those weddings that seem to go all-in with every single element? Mindblowing florals. A killer venue. Swoon-worthy dresses. Drool-worthy desserts. You get the idea. This editorial is basically a how-to for that. With vibrant color and rich texture, French Knot Studios + Izzy Hudgins Photograpny spared no detail!

Rich plum and navy wedding inspiration | Photo by Izzy Hudgins Photograpny | Read more -  http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=83135

Rich plum and navy wedding inspiration | Photo by Izzy Hudgins Photograpny | Read more -  http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=83135

The muse? Dramatic and lush floral paintings that Audrey of French Knot Studios has always been inspired by. Totally in love with how evident this inspo is throughout!

Rich plum and navy wedding inspiration | Photo by Izzy Hudgins Photograpny | Read more -  http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=83135

Rich plum and navy wedding inspiration | Photo by Izzy Hudgins Photograpny | Read more -  http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=83135

Rich plum and navy wedding inspiration | Photo by Izzy Hudgins Photograpny | Read more -  http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=83135

Rich plum and navy wedding inspiration | Photo by Izzy Hudgins Photograpny | Read more -  http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=83135

Gowns by BHLDN is a recipe for success, we think. Also, that sofa? In our homes now, please.

Rich plum and navy wedding inspiration | Photo by Izzy Hudgins Photograpny | Read more -  http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=83135

Rich plum and navy wedding inspiration | Photo by Izzy Hudgins Photograpny | Read more -  http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=83135

Rich plum and navy wedding inspiration | Photo by Izzy Hudgins Photograpny | Read more -  http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=83135

Rich plum and navy wedding inspiration | Photo by Izzy Hudgins Photograpny | Read more -  http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=83135

Rich plum and navy wedding inspiration | Photo by Izzy Hudgins Photograpny | Read more -  http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=83135

Rich plum and navy wedding inspiration | Photo by Izzy Hudgins Photograpny | Read more -  http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=83135

Rich plum and navy wedding inspiration | Photo by Izzy Hudgins Photograpny | Read more -  http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=83135

Gertie Mae’s Floral Studio brought Audrey’s vision to life perfectly with these arrangements.

Rich plum and navy wedding inspiration | Photo by Izzy Hudgins Photograpny | Read more -  http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=83135

Rich plum and navy wedding inspiration | Photo by Izzy Hudgins Photograpny | Read more -  http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=83135

Rich plum and navy wedding inspiration | Photo by Izzy Hudgins Photograpny | Read more -  http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=83135

Rich plum and navy wedding inspiration | Photo by Izzy Hudgins Photograpny | Read more -  http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=83135

Those brick walls! The Engine Room in Monroe, Georgia (built in 1895) might be the dreamiest venue around.

Rich plum and navy wedding inspiration | Photo by Izzy Hudgins Photograpny | Read more -  http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=83135

Rich plum and navy wedding inspiration | Photo by Izzy Hudgins Photograpny | Read more -  http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=83135

Rich plum and navy wedding inspiration | Photo by Izzy Hudgins Photograpny | Read more -  http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=83135

They even added a little DIY in the mix with gold markers and black paper on the back wall.

Rich plum and navy wedding inspiration | Photo by Izzy Hudgins Photograpny | Read more -  http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=83135

Thanks to the talented folks below for such an abundance of inspo today!

Photographer: Izzy Hudgins Photography / Venue: The Engine Room / Event Design & Styling: French Knot Studios / Floral Design: Gertie Mae’s Floral Studio / Hair & Makeup: Brushworx / Invitations: Wedding Paper Divas / Dessert: A Squad Bakeshop / Furniture Rentals: Crush Event Rentals / Table Accessories: Z Gallerie / Ribbon: Silk & Willow / Dresses: BHLDN / Hair Accessories: Mignonne Handmade / Jewelry: Trumpet & Horn / Menswear: H&M / Jewelry: Trumpet & Horn

Mignonne handmade and Gertie Mae's Floral Studio are members of our guide. Click here to see how to become a member

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12 Dec

To end a super fun week full of gift wrap and giveaways (scroll through the home page to see everything!), we present you with a chance to win a luxe gift for yourself: Prize Candle is offering one lucky reader a Noir candle valued at $199!

Noir by Prize Candle giveaway

The NOIR candle is crafted from the highest quality ingredients made with pure premium soy and presented in a sophisticated LUXE signature box. Plus, every NOIR candle contains an exclusively designed ring valued from $100-$10,000! You also get to burn your Prize Candle until the ring + code become visible, then enter the code on their website and discover if you are a lucky winner.

****To enter the giveaway, head to the 100 Layer Cake Facebook page here. Like our page and comment on the post with your favorite holiday tradition.****

Prize Candle is also offering 30% off to 100 Layer Cake readers with code: NOIR100.

Good luck and happy weekend! xo

 
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12 Dec

Downtown LA Carondelet house wedding | Photo by Logan Cole | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=83162

Aline + Mark’s Gatsby meets Wes Anderson meets Harry Potter (yep, all three!) wedding at the Carondelet House could’ve gone quite a few ways, but thanks to Beau & Arrow Events, it ended up being the “formal elegance with a twist” that they’d hoped for. The best part? Their short, 7-month engagement meant opting for a Friday night wedding—which is actually ideal for securing the venue + vendors at the top of your list—so they snagged all their first choices and made it a Friday night party for the books.

Thanks to Logan Cole for the images.

Downtown LA Carondelet house wedding | Photo by Logan Cole | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=83162

Downtown LA Carondelet house wedding | Photo by Logan Cole | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=83162

Downtown LA Carondelet house wedding | Photo by Logan Cole | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=83162

Downtown LA Carondelet house wedding | Photo by Logan Cole | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=83162

Aline’s bouquet recipe: astilbe, peonies, pomegranate, plum foliage, clematis, stock, and roses, all wrapped in Aline’s father’s tie, that way, he could walk her down the aisle though he’s no longer with them.

Downtown LA Carondelet house wedding | Photo by Logan Cole | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=83162

Downtown LA Carondelet house wedding | Photo by Logan Cole | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=83162

Downtown LA Carondelet house wedding | Photo by Logan Cole | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=83162

Downtown LA Carondelet house wedding | Photo by Logan Cole | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=83162

Downtown LA Carondelet house wedding | Photo by Logan Cole | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=83162

Downtown LA Carondelet house wedding | Photo by Logan Cole | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=83162

Downtown LA Carondelet house wedding | Photo by Logan Cole | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=83162

Aline says, We displayed 1000 origami cranes to celebrate my Japanese heritage in a wooden frame that Mark’s cousin made for us. My mom made strawberry French macarons that were placed on top of frosted donuts in Mendl’s boxes (a nod to The Grand Budapest Hotel) that Beau & Arrow Events put together for us to use as parting favors and a late night snack.

Downtown LA Carondelet house wedding | Photo by Logan Cole | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=83162

Downtown LA Carondelet house wedding | Photo by Logan Cole | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=83162

Downtown LA Carondelet house wedding | Photo by Logan Cole | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=83162

Downtown LA Carondelet house wedding | Photo by Logan Cole | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=83162

Our bridal party walked down the aisle to Pure Imagination and I walked to an instrumental interlude by Kanye West, which felt very “us” and loosened me up and made me giggle and smile all the way way down. Our first dance was to Cat Power’s version of Sea of Love. Another important song for us was Harry Potter’s Hedwig’s Flight as our guests were being seated for dinner.

Downtown LA Carondelet house wedding | Photo by Logan Cole | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=83162

Downtown LA Carondelet house wedding | Photo by Logan Cole | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=83162

Downtown LA Carondelet house wedding | Photo by Logan Cole | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=83162

Downtown LA Carondelet house wedding | Photo by Logan Cole | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=83162

Downtown LA Carondelet house wedding | Photo by Logan Cole | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=83162

Downtown LA Carondelet house wedding | Photo by Logan Cole | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=83162

Downtown LA Carondelet house wedding | Photo by Logan Cole | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=83162

Kudos to these guys for tying in all the littlest details so seamlessly!

Downtown LA Carondelet house wedding | Photo by Logan Cole | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=83162

Downtown LA Carondelet house wedding | Photo by Logan Cole | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=83162

Downtown LA Carondelet house wedding | Photo by Logan Cole | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=83162

Congrats to Aline + Mark!

PS: Check out their Pinterest to see the inspiration behind their big day.

Photographer: Logan Cole / Venue: Carondelet House / Design & Coordination: Beau & Arrow Events / Floral Design: The Little Branch / Bride’s Hair & Makeup: Kat Park / Bridesmaids’ Hair: Diana Lomelin / Bridesmaids’ Makeup: Corin Cruz / Paper Goods & Table Number Illustrations: Posh Paperie / Calligraphy: Dear Darling Calligraphy / Cake: King’s Hawaiian Bakery / Cotton Candy: Bon Puf / Catering: Tres LA / Linens: La Tavola Linen / Specialty Place Settings: Casa de Perrin / DJ: Michael Antonia of The Flashdance / Photobooth: Smilebooth / Ceremony Gown: Enzoani from Blush Bridal Couture / Reception Gown: Vera Wang / Headpieces, Veil, Garter, & Bridesmaids’ Necklaces: Made by Bride’s Mom/ Shoes: Valentino / Engagement Ring: Designed by Groom / Lipstick: Lime Crime Babette / Bridesmaids’ Poufs: ban.do / Groom’s Tux: Tommy Hilfiger / Tie: Dolce & Gabbana / Groomsmen’s Tuxedos: Vera Wang

The Little Branch, Beau & Arrow Events, La Tavola Fine Linen Rental, the flashdance, Smilebooth, and Casa de Perrin / a boutique rental co. are members of our guide. Click here to see how to become a member

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11 Dec

100 Layer Cake gift wrap party | Urbanic gift wrap | Photo by Fondly Forever

Remember that holiday party we had last year with Urbanic gift wrap? We told you it would end up a tradition! Sipping cocktails and wrapping gifts with the prettiest boxes, bows, and ribbons we can find is obvs on the top of our list of ideal December evenings. This time around, the lovely Fondly Forever Photography was there to document all the fun, starting with this awesome tissue paper decor from Shop Sweet Lulu. (I spy Oh Joy! for Target cups in the mix, too!)

100 Layer Cake gift wrap party | Urbanic gift wrap | Photo by Fondly Forever

100 Layer Cake gift wrap party | Urbanic gift wrap | Photo by Fondly Forever

100 Layer Cake gift wrap party | Urbanic gift wrap | Photo by Fondly Forever

100 Layer Cake gift wrap party | Urbanic gift wrap | Photo by Fondly Forever

This year’s setup…

100 Layer Cake gift wrap party | Urbanic gift wrap | Photo by Fondly Forever

100 Layer Cake gift wrap party | Urbanic gift wrap | Photo by Fondly Forever

100 Layer Cake gift wrap party | Urbanic gift wrap | Photo by Fondly Forever

100 Layer Cake gift wrap party | Urbanic gift wrap | Photo by Fondly Forever

100 Layer Cake gift wrap party | Urbanic gift wrap | Photo by Fondly Forever

A few glasses of Santa Margherita sparkling wine never hurts.

100 Layer Cake gift wrap party | Urbanic gift wrap | Photo by Fondly Forever

100 Layer Cake gift wrap party | Urbanic gift wrap | Photo by Fondly Forever

100 Layer Cake gift wrap party | Urbanic gift wrap | Photo by Fondly Forever

100 Layer Cake gift wrap party | Urbanic gift wrap | Photo by Fondly Forever

100 Layer Cake gift wrap party | Urbanic gift wrap | Photo by Fondly Forever

100 Layer Cake gift wrap party | Urbanic gift wrap | Photo by Fondly Forever

ffp_100lc_holiday2014-039

100 Layer Cake gift wrap party | Urbanic gift wrap | Photo by Fondly Forever

100 Layer Cake gift wrap party | Urbanic gift wrap | Photo by Fondly Forever

100 Layer Cake gift wrap party | Urbanic gift wrap | Photo by Fondly Forever

100 Layer Cake gift wrap party | Urbanic gift wrap | Photo by Fondly Forever

100 Layer Cake gift wrap party | Urbanic gift wrap | Photo by Fondly Forever

100 Layer Cake gift wrap party | Urbanic gift wrap | Photo by Fondly Forever

Jillian’s plaid shirt is from Target, skirt from Ted Baker (similar here, and on sale too!), and shoes are Zara.

100 Layer Cake gift wrap party | Urbanic gift wrap | Photo by Fondly Forever

100 Layer Cake gift wrap party | Urbanic gift wrap | Photo by Fondly Forever

100 Layer Cake gift wrap party | Urbanic gift wrap | Photo by Fondly Forever

100 Layer Cake gift wrap party | Urbanic gift wrap | Photo by Fondly Forever

100 Layer Cake gift wrap party | Urbanic gift wrap | Photo by Fondly Forever

So, can you tell we’re into color? Now if you need something to go inside those beautiful boxes, check out the Urbanic mini online shop full of gift ideas.

100 Layer Cake gift wrap party | Urbanic gift wrap | Photo by Fondly Forever

100 Layer Cake gift wrap party | Urbanic gift wrap | Photo by Fondly Forever

100 Layer Cake gift wrap party | Urbanic gift wrap | Photo by Fondly Forever

100 Layer Cake gift wrap party | Urbanic gift wrap | Photo by Fondly Forever

100 Layer Cake gift wrap party | Urbanic gift wrap | Photo by Fondly Forever

100 Layer Cake gift wrap party | Urbanic gift wrap | Photo by Fondly Forever

100 Layer Cake gift wrap party | Urbanic gift wrap | Photo by Fondly Forever

100 Layer Cake gift wrap party | Urbanic gift wrap | Photo by Fondly Forever

100 Layer Cake gift wrap party | Urbanic gift wrap | Photo by Fondly Forever

100 Layer Cake gift wrap party | Urbanic gift wrap | Photo by Fondly Forever

100 Layer Cake gift wrap party | Urbanic gift wrap | Photo by Fondly Forever

100 Layer Cake gift wrap party | Urbanic gift wrap | Photo by Fondly Forever

100 Layer Cake gift wrap party | Urbanic gift wrap | Photo by Fondly Forever

100 Layer Cake gift wrap party | Urbanic gift wrap | Photo by Fondly Forever

Cheers!

Gift wrap: Urbanic | Photographer: Fondly Forever Photography | Tissue paper decor: Shop Sweet Lulu | Amanda’s dress: older Anthropologie style, necklace: similar here | Jillian’s metallic dress: Rent the Runway | Kristina’s dress: Rent the Runway, Kristina’s black suede d’Orsay pumps: Sole Society

Fondly Forever Photography is a member of our guide. Click here to see how to become a member

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11 Dec

Every party should have at least one nice, big DIY, don’t you think? It doesn’t have to be complicated, just something to show your guests how inspired you were by the event, and perhaps give ‘em a little something to talk about. This orange and olive wreath Type A Society dreamed up was the focal point of the holiday entertaining ideas shoot we posted yesterday, and it’s ideal for those who want to replace the traditional holiday color story with bright, unconventional details. Click through our DIY gallery for the two-step how-to and lots more photos by Josh Gruetzmacher:

DIY orange & olive holiday wreath | concept & styling by Type A Society | Photo by Josh Gruetzmacher | 100 Layer Cake

That oughta brighten things up a bit!

DIY orange & olive holiday wreath | concept & styling by Type A Society | Photo by Josh Gruetzmacher | 100 Layer Cake

Thanks to Type A Society for sharing this DIY today!

Photographer: Josh Gruetzmacher / Styling and Floral: Type A Society / Plates: Anthropologie / Cups: Crate and Barrel / Napkins: La Tavola Linen / Silverware: West Elm

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