Dessert sushi

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Dessert sushi
If you don’t like raw fish maybe you like raw cookie dough? With ice cream? As sushi? Just maybe? Guys, dessert sushi rocked my world. It would be so fun for a party or a fun dinner surprise.
Chocolate and peanut butter sushi
dessert sushi
Baker ME Hammond replicated a full sushi experience with sweets. Here’s what we did:
dessert sushi
Whipped pistachio paste for wasabi
Starburst for ginger
Chocolate sauce for soy sauce
Coconut flakes for rice
Strawberry ice cream with sugar dough and sprinkles
Vanilla with chocolate chip cookie dough
Chocolate ice cream with peanut butter
dessert sushi
vanilla ice cream and chocolate chip cookie dough
dessert sushi
dessert sushi
styling by Brittany Jepsen
Click below for full recipes!

Marshmallow snowmen from Celebrate Everything

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darcy_holidayparty2013_5857

I’ve been a big fan of Martha Stewart editor, Darcy Miller ever since buying Martha Stewart Wedding magazines back when I had no need to be buying wedding magazines. Everything she touches turns to gold! I was thrilled to get my hands on her new book, Celebrate Everything, which is the ultimate guide to throwing every type of party imaginable. It’s chock full of fun and beautiful events and provides a blue print on how to do it all. It’s the logistical things about party planning that mystify me the most and it’s all broken down here. Each page features a stellar idea after stellar idea.  Darcy has shared one of the projects from her book, the Marshmallow Snowmen, just for Lars readers. Darcy says, “These Marshmallow Men are a fun and easy holiday craft. Yummy on their own or a great way to accessorize a cupcake or a glass of hot chocolate!”

Get the recipe below! 

Vanilla Bean Skull Cake for Halloween

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This. Is. Edible! It’s a skull, but it’s a cake. It’s a skull cake! I love the vanitas still life it created for our Halloween party. It acts as decor AND deliciousness. And let me tell you, this recipe is tasty! Just add some greenery (and fruits to continue the vanitas theme), and you’ve got a gorgeous centerpiece.
Also, I had to do it:

Here’s the full dinner table for the party in all of its spooky glory. There are a number of decoration ideas and recipes. You might die (muhahah! pun shamelessly intended) with all the delicious gorgeousness.

Photography by Alpha Smoot
Floral styling by Sarah Winward
Props from Mary Lee
Cake by ME Hammond
Art directed by Brittany Jepsen

See the recipe and instructions below.

Vanilla bean skull cake

Materials:

  • We used a skull mold from Wilton (you can find a similar option here)
  • 3 3/4 c. all purpose flour
  • 1 3/4 t. baking powder
  • 1 t. salt
  • 1/2 c. butter
  • 1 3/4 c. sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 t. vanilla
  • 2 vanilla beans
  • 1 1/2 c. whole milk

For glaze:

  • 3 1/2 c. powdered sugar
  • 1/2 c. milk
  • 1 t. vanilla

Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  2. Prepare the skull cake pan by thoroughly spraying the pan with non-stick spray and lightly flouring
  3. Cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy
  4. Slowly add eggs, vanilla extract, and vanilla beans
  5. Combine dry ingredients in a small mixing bowl
  6. Add dry ingredients and milk, alternating approximately 1/3 at a time beginning and ending with dry ingredients
  7. Once the batter is mixed, place it in the prepared skull cake pan
  8. Bake for about 30-35 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean
  9. Allow cakes to cool for about 30 minutes until the cake is only slightly warm
  10. Unmold the cakes from the skull pan
  11. Allow cake to completely cool. Cut the tops of the cakes to be even and place the cakes back to back to create the 3D skull
  12. Glaze cake and allow glaze to harden before serving
  13. Voila! You have a scary skull cake!
We’ve had so much fun with the tortured artist party, and this skull cake recipe really hits the sweet (and spooky!) spot. You can view details of the tortured artist party here, as well as the full menu here. See more Halloween ideas in our Halloween archives!

3 Unique sundae flavors

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Unique sundae flavors

Did you know that July is National Ice Cream month? It’s true! And I was so inspired by the latest Williams Sonoma catalog cover featuring some delicious sundaes in these soda fountain glasses that I wanted to make some for Lars and reveal the recipes. Don’t they look delicious?! Get the full recipes below!

Photography by Trisha Zemp  |  Recipes by Mary Elizabeth Hammond

Gingerbread layer cake with lemon buttercream

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Gingerbread layer cake with lemon butter cream

No matter the weather or mood you’re in, this beautiful Gingerbread Cake with Lemon Buttercream will whisk you away to some Narnia-like realm where the snow falls in beautiful crystalline flakes, and the air is cool and crisp and the sky is bright. It’s cool, but somehow not too cold, and the woods are frosted white and beautiful. A slice of this cake and a steaming cup of hot coffee or chocolate truly will lift your spirits, no matter what kind of extreme weather you’re dealing with.

Recipe and photos by contributor Sarah Coates of The Sugar Hit

10 Ways to Make Friends as an Adult

These days everyone’s wondering how to make friends as an adult. The pandemic has us all feeling desperate for genuine human connection, and more confused than ever about where to find it. Or maybe you’re like me, and over the last year you’ve watched Anne of Green Gables, Grace and Frankie, Booksmart, and other shows and movies about best friends so you’re craving a kindred spirit.

It’s important to remember that you’re not the only one who wants friends, so odds are that people want to be friends with you, too! Follow these ten tips and learn how to make friends as an adult like a pro!

Join a Craft Community

Look, I know you’re not surprised that this is the top of the Lars list, but hear me out. If you’re a crafter, there are probably like-minded people in crafting communities that you could become great friends with! And crafting together is such a great friendship building activity because you have lots of time to talk and inherently lots of crafty things to talk about. Swap favorite patterns or tips, talk about your go-to materials, and learn from seasoned crafters around you.

This is also a great way to make friends of all ages, which is an important way to build a rich social life and healthy community.

Look for crafting communities online, at local craft stores, or maybe ask your local library if they know of any.

Book Club

Book clubs are another great way to make friends as an adult because in a book club you get to hear people’s ideas. Lots of book clubs have themes, so if you really love a certain genre or topic, which means that everyone there has something in common. At a book club you’ll probably find a group of people you love talking to and you’ll never run out of conversations to have.

If you want to start a book club, find one or two other people who are as dedicated to it as you are and join forces to run it and choose books. You can also find book clubs online (zoom book club, anyone?) or by connecting to your local library. We even ran a Lars Book Club for a while, so you can find some recommendations in our archive or in this reading list.

Little Women art print on a patterned wall with warm colors around.November Book Club Art

Community Art Classes

Lots of cities and neighborhoods have community centers with lots of resources, including art classes! I’ve found that I meet a really diverse, interesting demographic when I join community-run classes.

If your town has a community center or rec center, that would be a great place to look for a community art class. There are usually classes for adults and kids alike, so the whole family can make new friends.

Little Lars craft kit materials

Slide Into Their DMs

You can laugh at this (the Lars team certainly did), but when I was living in Denmark and didn’t know anyone I made friends by emailing all the designers I admired in magazines. Slick, I know.

Not everyone responded, but I did end up making one good friend! And I also first met my good friend Michele Brummer Everett (check out her work on the blog and in the shop) online before we became neighbors!

Now, don’t be creepy and definitely (please) respect people’s privacy, but it can work! We can all thank the internet for this very twenty-first century way to make friends as an adult. If it’s good enough for Meg Ryan and Tom Hanks in You’ve Got Mail, it’s good enough for you.

Grow a Garden and Work In It

I know it sounds quaint, but this truly works. Growing a garden can help you meet so many people! Apart from the obvious benefits of providing with fresh veggies, fruits, and flowers, gardens are great conversation starters. I bet you’re not the only one in your neighborhood looking to develop a green thumb, and you can swap seeds, plants, and tips with your newfound friends.

Brittany stands in the garden wearing an apron and a sun hat and holding a geranium.

Brittany sitting and reading in a potted flower garden.

Get a Job at a Local Small Business

There’s this romantic idea that you can meet someone (whether romantically or platonically) by becoming a regular at a coffee shop or always reading in a certain section of the park. And you know what? Why not? It’s certainly not the most reliable or foolproof way to make friends as an adult, but maybe someone will notice you and want to become pals.

If this is your preferred method of making friends, you’ll increase your chances (and even make a few bucks) by getting a job at a local small business. If the business has frequent customers, then they’ll become familiar faces to you and you can strike up a friendship.

Go to the Dog Park

People at the dog park love talking about their dogs. That’s why they’re there! Just saunter on up and ask them what breed their dog is, and they’ll probably have a lot to say already.

Know that this one becomes a little awkward if you don’t have a dog of your own to bring, but if you’re trying to make friends as an adult you might just need to get creative.

Green park bench surrounded by grass and trees.

Join a Workout Class

I made one of my best friends in a high school PE class, and we always joked that being sweaty and miserable brought us together. The good news is that you can still be sweaty and miserable and make friends! The bad other good news is that you don’t have to be in PE or high school anymore!

There are lots of free and affordable workout classes out there, and some of them even sound pretty fun! So grab your swim suit or yoga mat or whatever applicable gear you need and get out there.

Rainbow leggings and tennis shoes on women from the knees down.

Throw a Game Night

This one requires you to know somebody, but if you throw a game night and ask your guests to bring another friend you could meet a whole bunch more people! The other good part about this tactic is that you probably (hopefully) like your friends’ taste in people, so you’re likely to get along with the people they bring. We sell some fun printable games in our shop, so your whole evening is planned out!

bingo games on a blue background. It's very colorful. Would you rather printable games on a pink background.

Bring Your Neighbors a Treat

This one’s a classic, but it’s a classic for a really good reason! Food opens doors, and it definitely opens hearts. Make a charcuterie board or a quick batch of brownies (we won’t tell if you use a mix) and bring them to your neighbor’s house. Maybe you live right by your new best friend! Doesn’t that sound like a dream come true? You’ll never know unless you meet them.

Painted charcuterie board laden with snacks and cookies and fruits and cheeses and treats.

More Ways to Make Friends

I want to hear about the ways that you make friends, too! Let me know how you’ve met your friends in the comments.

Birthday Cake Topper with Brother

As you can probably tell by now, we can’t stop talking about how much we love National Craft Month. It’s the perfect time to celebrate your creativity and get to work crafting up all of the amazing things you’ve been thinking about. If you are feeling like you are in a bit of a craft funk we have teamed up with our friends at Brother to bring you a sweet yet impactful project to get you out of your slump and on your way to crafting town!

Using the Brother P-touch ELITE we created these colorful flag cake toppers inspired by our newest line from Abby Low found in the Lars Print Shop. You may know by now that we love celebrating and since we are already celebrating craft month we figured we may as well celebrate anyone and everyone out there with a March birthday with these adorable birthday flag cake toppers.

Birthdays are so very special and we tend to go bananas decorating and that’s part of the reason we love using the P-touch ELITE because of how easy it makes it to create personalized ribbon! Think up your birthday phrases and print them on ribbon (the P-touch Embellish ELITE prints on tape too!) so you can create the perfect phrases, specific for your birthday queen or king!  

Here’s how you do it! 

Directions: 

  1. Pick your color palette 
  2. Paint your skewers to the colors you have chosen. We painted three skewers of each color and used 21 skewers and six colors (the more the better in our opinion)
  3. Set aside to dry. 
  4. Paint the wood beads in the same palette, three of each color in all six colors. 
  5. Set aside to dry. 
  6. Download the Ptouch Design&Print app to your phone!
  7. Select “Create your own label”.
  8. Select “text” and add in whatever you want the ribbon to say or even a graphic!
  9. Once the text is in click “Done”.
  10.  Adjust the “Taper length” depending on how long your message is. 
  11. Scroll to the left to find “label alignment” and align your text to the right” 
  12. Once your text is in and the alignment is correct click “print” 
  13. Set your ribbon to the side and begin building your flag frame. 
  14. Attach a piece of wire around  the dried painted skewer by wrapping it around the top. 
  15. Once the wire is attached, measure the length of the wire against the length of the ribbon and cute wire accordingly. 
  16. Using the glue stick apply glue to the back of the ribbon. 
  17. At the mid point on the ribbon place the skewer there and fold the ribbon in half so the wire is in in between the two halves. 
  18. Attach a painted wood bead to the top using a hot glue gun. 
  19. Place completed flag in cake! 

We love using the Brother P-touch ELITE it is the perfect easy-to-use ribbon and tape printer that you can use to create any and all of the exciting crafts you have planned for this Craft Month! We can’t wait to see what you create!

The green polka-dot background is from our Lars Print Shop. Thank you @glweddingcakes for the lovely cake!

Watermelon lime lemonade

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WATERMELON LIME LEMONADE

Fruit season is upon us! Cue the bells! That means…how do we use them? Well, in a fruity drink, of course! This watermelon mint lemonade is a delight and you will love it for picnics, parties, or just every day.
Watermelon lemonade recipe Fun summer drink recipes

Photography by Laura Sumrak  |  Styled by Brittany Jepsen  |  Recipe by Kelly Curtis 

Shop the post:

See below for the full recipe!

DIY Giant Lucky Charms

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Giant lucky charms tutorial and recipeGiant lucky charms. The best thing to happen to life since…lucky charms. Amiright? My philosophy about most things is that they are scientifically 10x better when they are enlarged or shrunken. Lucky Charms fits in that category.  Try out these homemade shortbread cookies and marshmallows with the recipe and tutorial below.

Printable Cookie Box with Arlo’s Cookies

These Christmas cookies might (might!) be too pretty to eat! I mean, can you even tell that they’re cookies?! Arlo’s Cookies is the BEST! She has an awesome holiday workshop happening right now. You can also find her Guide to Mixing Colors here. If I wasn’t such an inept baker, I’d be right there with you!

We did a adorable Valentine’s Gift Box collaboration with Arlo’s back in February (doesn’t that seem like years ago?!).

This year we are making a set of cookies inspired by our DIY mid-century nativity. We’re even launching a printable gift box to match the cookies which folds into a house shape. You can safely deliver these to your neighbor’s porches and spread some Christmas cheer!

Printable Christmas Nativity Cookie Box

This cookie box is awaiting to be made. Here’s how to do it!

Materials:

See above (the printable you can find here)

Instructions:

  1. Cut out the template
  2. Cut in between the two pitched lines at the top of the house (see second photo on right. There’s a solid line indicating where that is).
  3. Start scoring all the dotted lines.
  4. Once the lines are scored, fold back all the lines.
  5. Start gluing the tabs to the walls.
  6. You can either glue the tops of the pitched gables in place or secure with a light double sided stick tape so that it can be opened by the receiver.

Optional: Use a hole punch at the top for the tabs and secure with a ribbon!

Head on over to our Shop to see more cute printables and templates!

If you liked this project, you might like the following

Make your own Holiday Nesting Dolls
DIY Bottlebrush Christmas Trees
Printable Santa Lucia crown

This project was done in collaboration with Arlo’s Cookies,

DIY Floral Ice Cubes for the Fourth

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DIY Floral ice cubes

With Fourth of July fast approaching, chances are you’ve got some sort of picnic, BBQ, pool party, or gathering in the works! All of which are great excuses to put a little extra pizazz into your party preparation! Nothing is more refreshing that an ice cold beverage in the sweltering summer heat. So to ensure that your drinks stay frosty and adorable, we’ve got some special DIY floral ice cubes for the fourth! Filled with edible blue and white flowers and garnished with some red berries, these are sure to make any beverage 4th of July worthy. Adding blueberries or raspberries would make another great addition. I’m thinking dropped in some lemonade muddled with berries would be the perfect combination!

DIY after the jump!

Valentines Gift Box with Arlo Cookies

Printable Valentine cookie box

When Luna (creator of Arlos cookies) agreed to work with us we were ecstatic! We knew we wanted to create a box to put the cookies in but we needed them to be just as lovely as the cookies would inevitably be. With our task at hand we set out to make the most beautiful Valentine gift box worthy that would be carrying the elegant cookies.

To say we love the cookies and the box designed to carry them is an understatement! Wether you are putting Arlos Cookies in these boxes or any other Valentines treats they are bound to amplify your valentines gifting this season! Get your Valentine Cookie Box here!

Be sure to tag us with #larsloveslove so we can see how lovely your valentines gifts turn out!!!

Find Arlos Cookies

Website of Arlos Cookies
@arlocookies on Instagram