Lily & Val Living - A pretty place for all who love the simple things in life.
Lily & Val Gift Guide: Sugar & Extra Spice

This gift guide is for that special person you know, who has a little sass. When the “girlie” things just doesn’t fit the bill this holiday season, try one of these naughty & nice gift ideas. They are sure to love receiving these unique and unexpected gifts! The tote bag and pencil sets are sure to get at least a chuckle and smirk from your most “cool” friends.

This gift guide is for that special person you know, who has a little sass. When the "girlie" things just doesn't fit the bill this holiday season, try one of these naughty & nice gift ideas.

“Nope” Reward Ribbon Frankie & Claude  |  Donut Worry Be Happy Notebook  |  Ugh. Mug by Easy Tiger  |  Larissa Loden Knife Necklace A Thrill of Hope L&V Print  |  Carry on Cocktail Kit  |  I Hate Winter Tote  |  Easy Tiger Gifting Gift Box Gold and Black Damask Earrings  |  Carpenter Pencils  |  Moonshine Natural Perfume

Lily & Val Gift Guide: Trendy Traveler

Traveling is my favorite thing to do. This list included some great selections for grounded adventurers and jet-setters alike. In this list, you will find some tried and true travel essential like the Bon Voyage pouch, slouchy beret (for that bad travel hair), and the travel-friendly all natural roll-on perfume. Items to inspire the adventurous at heart include the “To Travel is To Live” canvas & print and this awesome line of field guides from Wildsam. Happy Trails!

Gift Guide for the Trendy Traveler

Fujifilm Instax Mini Camera  Bon Voyage Zippered Pouch  |  Slouchy Beret  |  Flight Ready Kit  |  To Travel is to Live Chalk Art (Available as a Print or Canvas) Wildsam Nashville Field Guide Polka Dot Camera Strap  |  Mini Yellow Backpack “Vacation” roll-on all-natural perfume  |  Catching Flights Not Feelings Hat  |  Passport Cover

5 Holiday Card Envelope Decorating Ideas

Surprising someone with a piece of snail mail is certainly special in and of itself, but sometimes the extra, little details can make a huge impact – especially around the holidays when mailboxes begin to fill up with seasonal greetings! I had so much fun coming up with these 5 holiday card envelope decorating ideas to help you add a festive touch to your Christmas card sending this year! Click on each photo to shop the cards too!

5 Holiday Card Envelope Decorating Ideas

No. 1. Banner:

My philosophy is: When in doubt, put a banner on it! 🙂 A hand-drawn banner is an amazing way to add emphasis to the name of your recipient. Choose a marker in a shade that matches the card. Here I kept the rest of the lettering the same color (using a white gelly roll pen) so the banner would really pop.

5 Holiday Card Envelope Decorating Ideas 5 Holiday Card Envelope Decorating Ideas

No. 2. Strokes of Color

For a simple way to add a bit of color to your envelope, use a brush pen to give your words a backdrop! Just add 4 strokes of color, then write your name and address on top of each stroke. The beauty of this technique happens when the lettering goes above and below your stroke line. It looks a bit haphazard and whimsical this way! I also added some simple, holiday-feeling leaf, laurel, and berry details to accent the address. The markers I used here are Tombow Dual Brush Pens.

5 Holiday Card Envelope Decorating Ideas 5 Holiday Card Envelope Decorating Ideas 5 Holiday Card Envelope Decorating Ideas

No. 3. Sparkle and Shine

Gelly roll pens are one of my absolute favorite pens for envelope addressing, especially the metallic pens! They come in a variety of colors, but I’m particularly smitten with the gold on the kraft envelope! After you letter or write the address, go back on top with the gelly roll pen and add starbursts, asterisks, dots and dashes. Add some of the “sparkles” on top of the letters and also accents around the address. Your recipients will be delighted to see it shine in their mail!

5 Holiday Card Envelope Decorating Ideas 5 Holiday Card Envelope Decorating Ideas 5 Holiday Card Envelope Decorating Ideas

No. 4. Birch Tree

Here it is again – another gelly roll pen idea! Using a white gelly roll on a kraft envelope, draw the outline of a tree off to the side of the envelope, leaving room for the address. When you fill in the tree, sporadically leave blank rectangles to mimic the markings of a birch tree. The great thing is, the markings are meant to look imperfect, so it’s easy to produce the effect! I love how a curved address looks next to the tree.

5 Holiday Card Envelope Decorating Ideas 5 Holiday Card Envelope Decorating Ideas 5 Holiday Card Envelope Decorating Ideas

N0.5. Snow!

This idea is a bit more time consuming, but SO easy and the effect is truly something special. I think it might be my favorite one (and saved for last!) Just take a fine tipped marker (like the thin side of a Tombow DualBrush Pen, a Micron Pen, or something similar) and touch it to the paper to create a dot. If you want the dots to come from the top down, add more to the very top and slowly add less and less as you come closer to the center of the envelope. You’ll notice around the addresses, the dots are less frequent. Same principle for the snowy border – you’ll want the dots to be tighter and closer together around the edges then gradually loosen as you move to the center.

I think this is such a modern way to depict a snowy scene, especially when paired with our Silent Night card!

5 Holiday Card Envelope Decorating Ideas 5 Holiday Card Envelope Decorating Ideas 5 Holiday Card Envelope Decorating Ideas

I hope you enjoyed these ideas!

Here are some additional resources for you:

I know these aren’t  chalkboard projects, but The Complete Book of Chalk Lettering will help you learn hand lettering for all types of mediums! It’s also filled with laurel and branch inspiration as well as how to draw the banner above.

To keep all your card sending in order be sure to check out our Holiday Gift Tracker! We’re all about less hustle and bustle this year and trying to keep everything organized!

All 5 of the cards pictured here (and three others!) are available as an assorted boxed set. You can purchase this set for a discounted price as opposed to each card individually.

Happy card sending, friends!

What Small Business Saturday Means To Me Plus Free Graphics

Friends, we are coming up on a special day that means a lot to me and the entire L&V team: Small Business Saturday.

If you’ve been following along with Lily & Val for a while, you’ll know that we opt out of out the traditional Black Friday sale, and instead hold our biggest sale of the year on Small Business Saturday through Cyber Monday. I wanted to share with you just a bit about what Small Business Saturday means to me…

The Lily & Val Team

My Dad worked in the steel mills of Pittsburgh, but right around the time I was born in the 80’s, he (and many other steelworkers) were permanently laid off. My Mom and Dad describe this as an extremely scary time filled with uncertainty and worry.

So my Dad got creative. What looked like a dark spot in their lives turned into motivation. He started a business selling auto parts and fixing cars with nothing except a drive to provide.

That business ended up being the best thing that could have happened. It was certainly not easy – just the opposite in fact – but my parents were then able to build a life they didn’t think was possible.

Consequently, as a small-town Pennsylvania girl watching her Father run his small business, I learned. All my life I was led by his example and he taught me the values of working hard and never limiting myself. He always told me I could be anything I wanted. I’ve carried that through the years and today it’s a huge part of what defines me.

Your support of small businesses changes lives for generations.

I know that’s a big statement, but I truly believe it. I’m a testament to it.

When you support Lily & Val, you are supporting the people you see above. We are a tiny team. I want you to know that we don’t take for granted a single dollar that you spend with us. It is felt and appreciated more than I can say. It has allowed me to do what I love and create a life. Grateful doesn’t begin to describe how I feel.

In honor of Small Business Saturday 2017, I put together these hand-drawn graphics! I hope you will join me in spreading the Small Business love this year. Please feel free to share and tag @lilyandval! Click on any image and it will open a new window with a higher resolution file perfect for sharing on social media.

Free graphic for sharing the Small Business Saturday love this year! Free graphic for sharing the Small Business Saturday love this year!

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving, friends! If you’re not already signed up to receive Lily & Val emails, be sure to do that so you don’t miss our Small Business Saturday deals this year.

Lily & Val Presents: Pretty Ordinary Friday #77

Pretty Ordinary gives you a sneak peek into Lily & Val behind the scenes! On Lily & Val Living!

For this week’s Pretty Ordinary Friday #77, we’re documenting snapshots of our week. While our pictures may not be the prettiest or the most interesting, we enjoyed each instance and want to remember them! These are the behind-the-scenes, in-between moments – the small peeks that would otherwise be forgotten. Join us as we use this series to scrapbook the unedited, memorable happenings at Lily & Val and what is inspiring our team!

The team says:

 

Lily & Val Presents: Pretty Ordinary Friday #77 with Anniversary celebrations, Christmas cups at Anthropologie and watercolor eucalyptus

1. “Last Saturday was my parent’s 40th anniversary! My siblings and I pulled off an epic surprise for them- all coming together from different parts of the country. We celebrated at the Grand Concourse River Room overlooking the city. Overall, it was a day I will remember forever.” – Valerie

2. “I stopped in Anthropologie this week and my latest product collab was there!!! It still feels like such a dream.” – Valerie

3“Eucalyptus- my greenery of choice this holiday season!” – Valerie 

Lily & Val Presents: Pretty Ordinary Friday #77 with Peppermint Wishes hand towels at Anthropologie, Pumpkin Spice coffee mugs and anniversary gifts

4“Another Lily & Val for Anthropologie product! I love this Peppermint wishes tea towel – I bought one for myself. :)” – Valerie

5. “Although I have fully switched mentally to Christmas, I’m still all about Pumpkin Spice Everything! This travel mug is another one of my designs for Anthropologie! Pumpkin lovers, be sure to get yours before they’re gone for the season!” – Valerie

6. “Not the prettiest picture, but my Dad decorated this box and filled it with old letters and memories for my Mom from their 40 years together. I just thought it was the sweetest thing ever!” – Valerie

Introducing Lily & Val Holiday Photo Cards – An Exciting Collaboration with Mixbook!

Friends! There is so much to tell you I feel like I’m saying “big news” almost every day, but this is really big news!!!!

I’m overjoyed to tell you that Lily & Val holiday photo cards are here through an exciting collaboration with Mixbook! Photo cards have been much requested throughout the years and I’m so pleased with how they turned out and the options that are available!

Lily & Val for Mixbook holiday photo cards and matching address labels are here! Choose one of the hand drawn and illustrated designs and customize your Christmas cards!

I can’t get enough bottlebrush trees! They are SO cute and have that sweet vintage feel. This “falala” card is available with two different photo layout options and just look at those return address labels!!! Ahhh!

P.S. Click on any of the photos to shop the cards!

Lily & Val for Mixbook holiday photo cards and matching address labels are here! Choose one of the hand drawn and illustrated designs and customize your Christmas cards! Lily & Val for Mixbook holiday photo cards and matching address labels are here! Choose one of the hand drawn and illustrated designs and customize your Christmas cards! Lily & Val for Mixbook holiday photo cards and matching address labels are here! Choose one of the hand drawn and illustrated designs and customize your Christmas cards!

This next card is bold, modern and typography inspired. I love how it looks paired with a photo – a striking greeting for sure!

Lily & Val for Mixbook holiday photo cards and matching address labels are here! Choose one of the hand drawn and illustrated designs and customize your Christmas cards! Lily & Val for Mixbook holiday photo cards and matching address labels are here! Choose one of the hand drawn and illustrated designs and customize your Christmas cards! Lily & Val for Mixbook holiday photo cards and matching address labels are here! Choose one of the hand drawn and illustrated designs and customize your Christmas cards! Lily & Val for Mixbook holiday photo cards and matching address labels are here! Choose one of the hand drawn and illustrated designs and customize your Christmas cards!

For all lovers of cacti! This non-traditional, holiday photo card is for you. I just love this sweet, unexpected watercolor and coordinated return address labels.

Lily & Val for Mixbook holiday photo cards and matching address labels are here! Choose one of the hand drawn and illustrated designs and customize your Christmas cards!

This is what the back of the card looks like:

Lily & Val for Mixbook holiday photo cards and matching address labels are here! Choose one of the hand drawn and illustrated designs and customize your Christmas cards! Lily & Val for Mixbook holiday photo cards and matching address labels are here! Choose one of the hand drawn and illustrated designs and customize your Christmas cards!

A hand-drawn crest with your photo inside. I am 99% sure this one is going to be the McKeehan Christmas card this year! It has coordinating photo return address labels, too.

Lily & Val for Mixbook holiday photo cards and matching address labels are here! Choose one of the hand drawn and illustrated designs and customize your Christmas cards! Lily & Val for Mixbook holiday photo cards and matching address labels are here! Choose one of the hand drawn and illustrated designs and customize your Christmas cards! Lily & Val for Mixbook holiday photo cards and matching address labels are here! Choose one of the hand drawn and illustrated designs and customize your Christmas cards! Lily & Val for Mixbook holiday photo cards and matching address labels are here! Choose one of the hand drawn and illustrated designs and customize your Christmas cards!

It’s the most wonderful time of the year! A classic L&V chalk art design with some hand-drawn sparkle. So fun!

Lily & Val for Mixbook holiday photo cards and matching address labels are here! Choose one of the hand drawn and illustrated designs and customize your Christmas cards! Lily & Val for Mixbook holiday photo cards and matching address labels are here! Choose one of the hand drawn and illustrated designs and customize your Christmas cards!

And now for the FOIL SERIES…

3 designs in the Lily & Val for Mixbook collection are fully foiled and they look so elegant. Each foil design is available with your choice of gold, copper, or silver.

Lily & Val for Mixbook holiday photo cards and matching address labels are here! Choose one of the hand drawn and illustrated designs and customize your Christmas cards! Lily & Val for Mixbook holiday photo cards and matching address labels are here! Choose one of the hand drawn and illustrated designs and customize your Christmas cards! Lily & Val for Mixbook holiday photo cards and matching address labels are here! Choose one of the hand drawn and illustrated designs and customize your Christmas cards! Lily & Val for Mixbook holiday photo cards and matching address labels are here! Choose one of the hand drawn and illustrated designs and customize your Christmas cards!

I can’t get over how the stars sparkle in this one! It has a magical, whimsical feeling perfect for the holidays.

Lily & Val for Mixbook holiday photo cards and matching address labels are here! Choose one of the hand drawn and illustrated designs and customize your Christmas cards!

Also, as part of the collection, we have a New Year’s card! Again, the hand lettering is foiled in your choice of metallic! It makes me want to throw a New Year’s Eve party just so I can send out this card. There’s something about the foil on the charcoal background that is absolutely beautiful.

Lily & Val for Mixbook holiday photo cards and matching address labels are here! Choose one of the hand drawn and illustrated designs and customize your Christmas cards!
Lily & Val for Mixbook holiday photo cards and matching address labels are here! Choose one of the hand drawn and illustrated designs and customize your Christmas cards! Lily & Val for Mixbook holiday photo cards and matching address labels are here! Choose one of the hand drawn and illustrated designs and customize your Christmas cards!

You may recognize a lot of these designs as prints in the Lily & Val shop! Also, if photo cards aren’t your thing, most of the designs are also available as cards without the photo on lilyandval.com.

I hope you enjoy customizing your Christmas cards! I can’t wait to see which one you choose!!

November Happy Mail Idea – Thanksgiving Recipes

Hey friends! It’s that time again for another Happy Mail Idea! With the launch of our newest kitchen goodies & Thanksgiving right around the corner, this idea is great for making someone smile this month!

Lily & val loose recipe cards in assorted designs

TO MAKE THIS HAPPY MAIL:

Gather up your favorite, seasonal recipes and hand-write them on our new Lily & Val loose recipe cards!

Package the recipes with a Fall card. I think this “truly grateful” card is perfect for this time of year, plus the kraft paper looks a lot like butcher paper to fit the kitchen theme.

Send it along to a friend who may need cheering up with comfort food. If you can’t send the dish itself, sending the handwritten recipe is a sweet gesture.

November Happy Mail Gift Idea- send loose recipe cards plus a thanksgiving card that looks like butcher paper!

We love the idea of surprising someone with a little gift just because! Sending happy mail doesn’t need to be on a big budget or a large scale. If you create a bit of happy mail inspired by ours, we would love to see! Use #LVhappymail on Instagram!

We’ll be sending a special, exclusive pack of all three assorted recipe cards + a truly grateful card one lucky winner!  Check out our Happy Mail Instagram post to enter! Happy almost-Thanksgiving, friends!

Thanksgiving Happy Mail Idea- the next best thing to sending comfort food to a loved one - send a handwritten recipe card instead.
3 New Recipe Cards Have Been Added To The Collection

New loose recipe card packs by Lily & Val! 3 styes: whimsical lemons, farmhouse gingham, and vintage pyrex!

Friends, did you see the news yesterday? We launched our best-selling Keepsake Kitchen Diary with a brand new Whimsical Lemons cover option! In addition to the new Kitchen Diary, we also expanded our line of loose recipe cards with three additional designs! I can’t wait to tell you about them!

First up, Whimsical lemons

(of course, this matches the new Kitchen Diary cover!)

Add some zest to your culinary creations with these sweet-as-can-be cards. With clearly labeled spaces for each component of your recipe, the playfully vibrant Whimsical Lemons Recipe Card Pack is a must for fervent foodies who enjoy cooking memorable meals just as much as eating them!

whimsical lemon recipe cards for your favorite recipes whimsical lemon recipe cards for your favorite recipes

Next, Farmhouse Gingham

Sweet, southern, and simple. This pretty recipe card set is sprinkled with so many little details: mason jar blooms, chic pink and gingham, and adorable almost-empty salt-and-pepper shakers. Your home is your heart, and these handy recipe cards will make sure your memorable shared meals are never forgotten.

New farmhouse gingham recipe cards by Lily & Val are the perfect addition to your recipe card box A farmhouse gingham loose recipe card for your favorite recipes

Finally, Vintage Pyrex

Retro lady—these are for you. If you aren’t caught dead without your pretty apron on and you live to share your love through food, these quirky, nostalgic cards will complete your kitchen. Pen your favorite muffin recipe next to the bright Pyrex bowls of yesteryear, and prepare for plenty of compliments to the cook.

Adorable loose recipe cards wth vintage pyrex illustrations | retro inspired recipe cards

These cards are beautifully paired with our Keepsake Kitchen Diaries! I hope these products help you savor time spent in the kitchen just a little bit more.

The whimsical lemons Keepsake Kitchen Diary pairs beautifully with the loose lemon recipe cards The best-selling Keepsake Kitchen Diary pairs beautifully with these farmhouse gingham recipe cards
Lily & Val Presents: Pretty Ordinary Friday #76

Pretty Ordinary gives you a sneak peek into Lily & Val behind the scenes! On Lily & Val Living!

For this week’s Pretty Ordinary Friday #76, we’re documenting snapshots of our week. While our pictures may not be the prettiest or the most interesting, we enjoyed each instance and want to remember them! These are the behind-the-scenes, in-between moments – the small peeks that would otherwise be forgotten. Join us as we use this series to scrapbook the unedited, memorable happenings at Lily & Val and what is inspiring our team!

The team says:

Lily & Val Presents: Pretty Ordinary Friday #76 with the new Whimsical Lemons Keepsake Kitchen Diary, blush everything and Chalk lettering techniques snack tables

1. “Yesterday we launched the brand new Whimsical Lemon Keepsake Kitchen Diary and three new loose recipe cards! Swooning over this store display!” – Valerie

2. “I’ve definitely had a thing for blush lately!” – Valerie

3“The latest Chalk Lettering Techniques class was held this past Saturday! Here’s a peek at the snack table. I still love this plum botanical canvas for winter.” – Valerie 

Lily & Val Presents: Pretty Ordinary Friday #76 with Chalk Lettering Techniques class, fresh lavendar from Trader Joe's and Tarte Cosmetics at Ulta

4“Another look at the Chalk Lettering Techniques class set-up before everyone arrived! Pumpkins + holiday garland?! Such is this in-between time of year!” – Valerie

5. “I treated myself to a fresh bunch of lavender from Trader Joe’s. It was something simple, but it really lifted my mood.” – Valerie

6. “Little known fact about me – I LOVE makeup. I could have possibly become a makeup artist I love it that much. But unfortunately, because of my severe gluten intolerance, I have to use gluten-free cosmetics (takes GF to a whole new level, I know!). So when my local Ulta was holding a Tarte event I had to go! Tarte is my go-to because they are gluten free and not filled with usual chemical culprits. It was so much fun and I loved getting my makeup done by the Tarte makeup artist!” – Valerie

NEW Keepsake Kitchen Diary™ Cover Option – Whimsical Lemons!

The Keepsake Kitchen Diary by Lily & Val is a one-of-a-kind family cookbook because we've made room for what makes the recipes special: The memories and stories that go with them!

With the Thanksgiving season upon us and all the nostalgic meals sure to be enjoyed, we thought it was the perfect time to share the newest additions to our heartfelt kitchen lineup!

I’m overjoyed to tell you that our best-selling Keepsake Kitchen Diary is now available with a new cover option! The diary is the same on the inside, but these whimsical lemons are adding a bright, sunshiny pop to the outside!

The best-selling Keepsake Kitchen Diary is now available in a new cover option- Whimsical Lemons!

From the handy pockets on both inside and back covers, to journal pages for sweet memories, to the hand-drawn illustrations lining the pages, everything you know and love about this one-of-a-kind recipe notebook stays the same. The only difference is a fabulous new facelift!

The Keepsake Kitchen Diary by Lily & Val is a one-of-a-kind family cookbook because we've made room for what makes the recipes special: The memories and stories that go with them! The best-selling Keepsake Kitchen Diary is now available in a new cover option- Whimsical Lemons!

If you’re not familiar with the Keepsake Kitchen Diary, what really makes it special is that we’ve made room for what matters most. There’s a page next to each recipe to record the stories, memories, and occasions surrounding your favorite dishes.

We believe the small things become the big things when we look back, so it’s important to us to preserve every day, ordinary, in-between moments of life! This book helps do just that.

Many of my most precious memories involve food and family around the table! Read more about the backstory and heart behind this book and why I created it.

The Keepsake Kitchen Diary by Lily & Val is a one-of-a-kind family cookbook because we've made room for what makes the recipes special: The memories and stories that go with them!

Some Kitchen Diary owners love to scrapbook their books with stickers, washi tape, and photos while others like to keep it simple. Either way, our hope is that this Diary gives you the opportunity to create a meaningful family cookbook that will be cherished for many years to come!

See more Kitchen Diary inspiration!

Nothing beats a handwritten recipe. The Keepsake Kitchen Diary by Lily & Val is a one-of-a-kind family cookbook because we've made room for what makes the recipes special: The memories and stories that go with them! The Keepsake Kitchen Diary by Lily & Val is a one-of-a-kind family cookbook because we've made room for what makes the recipes special: The memories and stories that go with them! The Keepsake Kitchen Diary by Lily & Val is a one-of-a-kind family cookbook because we've made room for what makes the recipes special: The memories and stories that go with them!

Also, we added 3 new loose recipe card designs today! They perfectly coordinate with both the Lemon and the Classic cover (Be sure to check out our limited bundles and get both a Diary & card pack for an amazing price!)

New Whimsical Lemon Keepsake Kitchen Diary and coordinating lemon recipe card pack bundle! New Whimsical Lemon Keepsake Kitchen Diary and coordinating lemon recipe card pack bundle!

Whether your kitchen oozes Southern Charm or your best dish is a lemon tart, I hope you love the vibrant playfulness of the Whimsical Lemons Keepsake Kitchen Diary!

Of course, the diary is still available in our Classic cover, too! 🙂 Which one is your favorite?

Find both Kitchen Diaries here.

The Keepsake Kitchen Diary by Lily & Val is a one-of-a-kind family cookbook because we've made room for what makes the recipes special: The memories and stories that go with them!