Thursday, 29 August 2013

September Calendar Free Printable Download!

September free calendar printable download by fathima at Happiness is...
Eep, almost forgot it was calendar week! Been busy, busy, busy with lots of cool new projects that I can't wait to share with you once complete.
Hope you've had a fantastic month, and here's to more awesomeness next month! For you summer fans (in the southern hemisphere), I'm sure you'll be glad to see the beginning of warmer weather with Spring fast approaching. Being a winter-lover myself, I'm getting my aircon ready and preparing to hibernate.
Anyway, hope you enjoy September's calendar! Created using original hand drawn and hand painted elements in pen and watercolour. Do share it around if you like :)

Monday, 26 August 2013

Durban Alternative Wedding Fair by I Love Pop Up Shop

I Love Pop Up Shop Alternative Wedding Fair in Durban
If you or someone you know are getting hitched soon, then listen up! An all new event is coming to Durban this October for those looking for something different and original for their wedding day. The event is hosted by Genevieve Motley's I Love Pop Up Shop and is set to be fantastic. The Saturday night event will be exclusive for the first 50 people to register (do it NOW! Check poster for details) and will have a live jazz band, a fun photo booth, giveaways, goodie bags and exclusive vouchers and specials from the vendors. R30 on Sunday from 9am til 3pm will get you entrance plus a special goodie bag!

Happiness is... will be there with a whole new range of customisable ready-made wedding stationery and exclusive offers on custom packages, so be sure to pop by!

So in case you missed it above...
When: Saturday 5th October and Sunday 6th October
Time: Saturday 6pm til late, Sunday 9am til 3pm.
Where: Upstairs, 202a Florida Rd, Durban (above Spiga D'oro)
Entrance: Saturday - prebooking required at (first 50 people only); Sunday: R30 with goodie bags

Wednesday, 21 August 2013

Watercolour Lettering

Thought I'd share some watercolour lettering I've been playing around with. I love the unpredictability you can get from watercolour and brushes, like in the "be true to yourself" below. The brush kind of creates its own light and dark areas, thick and thin bits, etc.
Be True to Yourself - watercolour hand lettering by fathima kathrada at Happiness is...
watercolour hand lettering - monograms by fathima kathrada at Happiness is...
I'm thinking the ones above can work well for monogram prints... what do you think? (Prints as opposed to the original custom monograms currently offered on my store). Want to get a whole alphabet set together soon :)

Tuesday, 20 August 2013

Send Me Your Giveaway Ideas!

Hi peeps. Apologies for the blog silence lately... the tragic loss of a dear loved feline family member left me rather motivation-less for a while and it didn't feel right to just go on as usual. Trying to get back into the swing of things now though, despite the dreaded 'flu trying to set in!
On a happier note, check out these snaps I got sent of a commissioned illustration I did a while back for a mom expecting twins! Nice to see them framed :)
Apart from that, there's some fun logo work going on, an event (!) that I'll be at in the near future, plus more exciting stuff in progress that I hope to share with you all soon.

I'm almost at 300 likes on Facebook and would love to do another giveaway to celebrate... what would you like me to give away? I'd love to hear your ideas in the comments, so please do leave me a little note! :) 
P.S. It doesn't have to be an existing product - if you'd like it, name it!

Sunday, 11 August 2013

Strawberry Charlotte and Persian Love Cakes

So following on from last week's post about this cake and dessert I made for Eid, here's the result of my efforts. Was pretty stoked with the way it turned out and they were quite well-received. Not too far off from the original pics either, I think! 
Unfortunately my pics were taken in quite a rush on my phone, so they aren't the best. What I liked about both recipes was that they weren't too rich. Both had subtle flavours and although the Strawberry Charlotte looks like it could potentially be an overly sweet creamy nightmare, it was just right. The only thing I'd change, if you're thinking of trying this, is using another recipe for the mousse. Mine was pretty soft which meant that when you cut into the whole thing, it kinda starts collapsing. A firmer mousse that holds its shape a bit would work better, and most of the original recipes used one with gelatine, so that'd work best.
Would love to know what you think, and do let me know how it goes if you try it! :)

Thursday, 8 August 2013

Eid ul Fitr - Celebrating the End of Ramadaan

Celebrating the end of the fasting month of Ramadaan with Eid ul Fitr
Today was the last day of the fasting for the month of Ramadaan (check out this post for a quick explanation if you don't know what that is), and tomorrow is the day of Eid to celebrate the end of the fasting month. On this day families usually have huge get-togethers and cook up the most delicious yummy stuff they can think of. If you'd like to wish someone for this day, the thing to say would be "Eid Mubarak" (pronounced eed moobaaruk).
I love experimenting with baking and desserts (I'm not much of a cook), but I don't do it much coz I end up eating the entire thing myself. Eid is a good excuse to whip out some recipes I've been wanting to try, so for tomorrow I'm attempting the Persian Love Cake and a Strawberry Charlotte
Persian Love Cake
I've actually already prepared the Persian Love Cakes and am quite happy with how they turned out. I made them in little shaped cupcakes instead of a big cake and all that's left to do is the decorating. The texture is amazing and the flavours are really interesting and unusual. It mixes the flavours of cardamom, saffron and rose with a hint of lemon. Here's the recipe I used, and I came across it via good ol' Pinterest. (Follow me if you like!)

Strawberry Charlotte dessert
The Strawberry Charlotte is half assembled. Not gonna lie, I'm a bit nervous about it holding together, but let's just hope it does. If it doesn't, I'll just have to improvise! When looking at different recipes I saw that pretty much every recipe did it slightly differently, so I made up my own version from that. It's basically layers or vanilla cake, strawberries and strawberry mousse, surrounded by "lady fingers" or Boudoir Biscuits as we know them here in SA. The image is from this recipe, but I used the mousse from this recipe. (I got lazy and used a store bought basic sponge cake :P).

Will share pics if they turn out looking presentable enough, haha! If you're celebrating, Eid Mubarak and have a lovely day, but don't overeat! If you're not celebrating and are in SA, happy Women's Day! And if you're anywhere else, happy Friday and have a lovely weekend :)

Wednesday, 7 August 2013

Instagram Faves

Today I'm sharing some of my favourite pics from Instagram recently. I find it such a great source of inspiration! 
Awesome illustrated gift wrap, seen on Instagram
Getting packages in the post is awesome! Cool Quill & Fox stationery, seen on Instagram
Love the look, vibe and photography in this pic of the Roman Candle Bakery, seen on Instagram
Love this tiger illustration by Jen Collins! Seen on Instagram
Hilarious sign and misplaced punctuation. Seen on Instagram
Awesome illustration, design, stationery and a cool coffee shop. I particularly enjoyed this last one, and her caption with it, haha! Needless to say, these are all awesome people that I enjoy following. Are you on Instagram? This is me if you'd like to follow.
one // two // three // four // five 

Monday, 5 August 2013

Product Update - Hand Painted Monogram Art Pieces & Hand Drawn Frames and Borders for Sale

Custom monogram illustrations for sale by fathima kathrada, freelance graphic designer and illustrator
Just a quick update on some new stuff that was shared on facebook, twitter or instagram but I don't think got mentioned here. In case you missed it, the lovely Megan from The Sun House blog did an interview with me and a giveaway of  a custom monogram illustration. The lucky winner requested a two letter illustration for her and her husband to celebrate their one year (paper!) anniversary - how sweet! She also mentioned that they love nature and the sea and so I incorporated some of those elements into it. 
I absolutely love working on these pieces. They're done using brush pen for the lettering and watercolour paint for the pattern. They're now available for sale on my Hello Pretty store, or you can contact me directly via email. Makes a great personal gift :)
Custom monogram illustrations for sale by fathima kathrada, freelance graphic designer and illustrator

If you're a blogger or use creative programs you might enjoy my products on Creative Market where I sell illustrated graphic elements. They're great for use in blog posts or on birthday cards, labels or anything else you can think of! Most of them are available in vector format as well for you to edit colours and sizes. These are some of them so far, and I'll be adding more soon. Check out the store here
Hand drawn graphic elements for sale on Creative Market - Arrows and Dividers
Hand drawn graphic elements for sale on Creative Market - Frames and borders
If you have any graphic elements in mind that you'd like to see in the store, do let me know!

Vinyl Decor Stickers Designed for Stickaroo!

Vinyl decor stickers designed by Happiness is... for Stickaroo
I'm super excited to announce a new project I've been working on! I've collaborated with Stickaroo to produce a range of vinyl decor stickers! If you haven't heard of Stickaroo before, here's a little bit about them:
“Stickaroo is a small, family-run company based in Pretoria, South Africa. We are all about fun, loving, and creating awesome interior ideas for your home. We have incredible passion for what we do and we hope you can see it in the details of our work. Our decor stickers are top quality, easy to apply and last a lifetime!”
Vinyl decor stickers designed by Happiness is... for Stickaroo
Vinyl decor stickers designed by Happiness is... for Stickaroo
Vinyl decor stickers designed by Happiness is... for Stickaroo
Vinyl decor stickers designed by Happiness is... for Stickaroo
Vinyl decor stickers designed by Happiness is... for Stickaroo
Vinyl decor stickers designed by Happiness is... for Stickaroo
Vinyl decor stickers designed by Happiness is... for Stickaroo
Vinyl decor stickers designed by Happiness is... for Stickaroo
Vinyl decor stickers designed by Happiness is... for Stickaroo - floral emblem design
They also have a pretty cool range of colours you can choose from to match your decor. What do you think? Check them out on their store here.
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