An Ocean-Themed Birthday

Cupcakes, decorations, and photos by Donaville Herrick

Supplies for decorations:

  • 2 packages of blue and green crepe paper streamers
  • Tissue paper in teal, light blue, and mint green
  • White plastic table cloth
  • Tape, scissors

As promised, here is a look at my daughter’s fourth birthday party.

Throwing parties for little ones can be costly, especially if there’s a specific theme involved. My daughter asked for a mermaid/ocean-themed party, and after researching what it would cost for decorations and desserts, we were looking at spending well into the hundreds of dollars.

Ouch! said our wallets.

So instead of shelling out $hundreds, the Mr. and I decided to take the DIY route and make the decorations and and desserts, nothing over-the-top, and we spent about $30 in all the decorations and desserts. Yes, $30.

ocean-themed birthday dessert table by Donaville Herrick / featured on dearestnature.com

All decorations (streamers, tissue paper, and table cloth) totalled under $10 and desserts (DIY cupcake, DIY clam cake, and store-bought madeleines) were another $20.

ocean-themed birthday party / featured on dearestnature.com

The birthday girl had fun helping out with decorating (and eating) the desserts, too.

The inspiration:

  • The water: inspiration for the water was from this waterfall backdrop from this wedding featured on Ruffled.
  • The seaweed: I borrowed the idea for the seaweed from this birthday party (really fun activities/ideas in that party).
  • The tissue paper pom poms: We initially wanted to hang the sea-urchin pom poms from the ceiling, but then I had a last-minute idea to place the pom poms separately behind the desserts. I followed an easy how-to from Martha Stewart (each one takes about 5 – 10 minutes to make)
  • The cupcakes: sea urchin cupcakes were inspired by these sea urchin cakes from this amazing mermaid party.

About Donaville Herrick

Donaville is the Founder of Dearest Nature and also Co-Founder and Creative Director of Hello Hello Hi. When visions of nature and web design aren't dancing in her head, she enjoys spending time with her three munchkins, baking cupcakes, and trying her hand at various crafts. Follow her on Twitter to stay updated with her day-to-day musings.

Obsolete Delete

Manual typewriter by David Ellingsen

I recently came across these hauntingly beautiful installations by photographer David Ellingsen. The photos are from part one in a series entitled Obsolete Delete, which David describes is “the speed of technological obsolescence, the environment, and the collision of the two.”

It’s amazing how rapidly technology has changed within the past twenty years. Casette tapes? CRTs? Those are things my children will probably never use when they’re grown. The only technology from my childhood that I still keep with me is a VCR and VHS tapes, mostly a collection of Disney Classics that my little dearests watch on occasion, so VHS tapes aren’t something are foreign to them. But technology from my parents and grandparents past? Those are historic relics in my childrens eyes.

obsolete delete by David Ellingsen / featured on dearestnature.com

About Donaville Herrick

Donaville is the Founder of Dearest Nature and also Co-Founder and Creative Director of Hello Hello Hi. When visions of nature and web design aren't dancing in her head, she enjoys spending time with her three munchkins, baking cupcakes, and trying her hand at various crafts. Follow her on Twitter to stay updated with her day-to-day musings.

Flower Constructions

flower constructions by Anne ten Donkelaar

This one’s for all of you mixed-media lovers out there. Behold the impressive flower constructions that I spotted over at Trendland today, made with pressed paper cutouts, dried plants and leaves by Netherlands-dwelling artist Anne ten Donkelaar. They’re a fusion of two of my favorite things: paper (relaunching in September) and nature.

Encased in a frame, these lovelies are held together in place by long stems and pinned down at varying heights against a blank white canvas.

flower constructions by Anne ten Donkelaar / featured on dearestnature.com

About Donaville Herrick

Donaville is the Founder of Dearest Nature and also Co-Founder and Creative Director of Hello Hello Hi. When visions of nature and web design aren't dancing in her head, she enjoys spending time with her three munchkins, baking cupcakes, and trying her hand at various crafts. Follow her on Twitter to stay updated with her day-to-day musings.

Inside Creation

“Create” print by Inside Creation

Get ready to be enchanted by some of the most innovative works of art by Croatian graphic designer and illustrator Estera of Inside Creation, whose shop’s name is derived from “years of spiritual exploration of the ways of the world and [her] own existence inside this reality”.

It was awe at first sight when I happened upon Estera’s work, infused heavily with nature and fairytale-esque themes. What fairytales and other stories come to mind when you look at her work? I can spot Alice in Wonderland, in at least one of the images below.

artwork by Inside Creation / featured on dearestnature.com

Estera’s piece “The Storyteller” conjures up memories of The Neverending Story — one of my favorite childhood movies — for me.

About Donaville Herrick

Donaville is the Founder of Dearest Nature and also Co-Founder and Creative Director of Hello Hello Hi. When visions of nature and web design aren't dancing in her head, she enjoys spending time with her three munchkins, baking cupcakes, and trying her hand at various crafts. Follow her on Twitter to stay updated with her day-to-day musings.

Stephanie Ryan

Artwork by Stephanie Ryan

Visit Stephanie’s

You could say the work of Stephanie Ryan can only described one way … gorgeous! But now that I think about it, more words come to mind: delicate, pretty, bright, bold, dreamy … ok, so a few more ways than just one!

Stephanie Ryan Design / article by Jasmine Flamenco / featured on dearestnature.com

Stephanie discribes herself as a creative soul, a nurturer, an inspirer. She says, “through the use of simple shapes and thoughtful colors, I found that I could express a piece of myself through my art. Peaceful, serene, and beautiful are the colors that I use to express how I feel, and the simple uncomplicated shapes are the life that I am trying to obtain. It is my dream to reach people and soothe their hectic lives with quiet thoughts of inspiration.”

I love that last part about soothing — something I think all of us need at one time or another!

About Jasmine Flamenco

Jasmine is a maker, crafter, ceramicist, wife, knitter, origami amateur, and Master Chef in the making (if Master Chef only included making vegetarian food). Visit her blog for lively inspiration.