December 9th, 2015 |

BREAKFAST with SANTA | DONUT BAR

invitationCreating a little Christmas magic for the little ones in my life is always a goal for the holiday season.  This year, I want to host a “Breakfast with Santa” party – complete with our darling Santa party invitation, festive tablesetting, a donut breakfast bar, and Santa mug party favor.

A classic red and green color palette looks fresh against a crisp white backdrop.   Here are a couple of my favorite details to look for in the photos:

  • Our “Santa” party invitation is one of my all-time favorites.  It could be used for a variety of Christmas events, and I love the simplicity of it and the preppy stripes on the back.  You will see we play off the stripes in a few different places, like on the kids plates, and on the banner hanging above the donut bar.
  • Our tablesetting contained a couple of festive elements: a personalized melamine plate that also served as a party favor, and a white napkin tied up with a red bow and big red jingle bell.
  • The theme dictated a breakfast menu, so a donut bar was in order!  I used my white cake stands to serve up different types of donuts, many of which were basic store-bought donuts I embellished myself with a little frosting and sprinkles!
  • I used a red and white stripe banner from Target as the backdrop for the donut bar, and used 2″ silver foil letter stickers to spell out “believe” on the pennants.
  • My favorite item on the donut bar were the cello bags full of powder sugar donuts with our santa sticker labeling them “snowballs.”
  • We sent guests home with a charming Santa mug from the Martha Stewart Collection at Macy’s, tied up with cellophane and our big “special delivery” foil-stamped gift tags.

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October 28th, 2015 |

CUSTOM PARTY by WH HOSTESS | NEMO

4B8B1818One of the challenges we face when planning custom birthday parties is the location, and what they will allow in terms of decorations.  If your planning a party at home, the sky’s the limit when it comes to decorations.  But at a restaurant, play place, farm, museum, etc. that’s not always the case.

One of our favorite clients asked us to help plan her son’s Under the Sea/Finding Nemo birthday party this past spring.  The catch was, he wanted to have it at the Houston Aquarium.  There was a restaurant, where they could decorate a table, but they could only get in 30 minutes prior!  So….we had to plan smart, and come up with a few key details that would make the space look festive, yet that could be set up quickly!

A few fun details to take note of:

  • The colorful tablesetting for the kids – we dressed up basic linens with a table runner made from our custom fish patterned fabric, and then popped it with paper plates, napkins, cups, and bubbles.
  • We used turquoise foil accents throughout all of the paper goods, from the invitations, to the straw flags, to the party favor gift tags. It added to the look of bubbles!
  • The adult guests were served a themed cocktail….blue, of course!
  • The tiered cake by Cakes by Gina was spectacular!
  • After the kids went on a fabulous tour around the aquarium, they took home a sand pail full of goodies, including a stuffed Nemo, and tied with a foil-stamped gift tag.

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October 14th, 2015 |

RUBBER DUCKY BABY SHOWER

placesettingIt’s no secret that we love a good theme party around here.  And when it comes to baby showers, more often than not, we’re working with a gender neutral color palette.  A rubber ducky theme is classic, and one of my all-time favorites.  It also works beautifully for a 1st birthday party (I know a certain little man in my house that LOVES rubber duckies!).

Our new rubber ducky party invitation is just darling, if I do say so myself!  The front features a turquoise bubble background along with our charming ducky, and the back features an all-over ducky pattern.

Sometimes you need just a few details to make a party special.  If you are hosting a party at a restaurant or club, you may only be able to decorate the tablesetting. I suggest lining the table with a polka dot patterned table runner, and creating graphic, festive centerpieces by lining up mini rubber duckies from Party City on white cake stands.

Surprise your guests with one coordinating dessert, such as a theme appropriate sugar cookie.  Sweet Nelsons made these darling ducky cookies for us, and they were as delicious as they were adorable.  I love gifting my guests with edible party favors, and think you can have a lot of fun trying to coordinate your candy to your theme.  For this party, we used blue round candy from Candywarehouse.com to look like bubbles.  And to dress up a basic cellophane bag – a little ribbon and our matching rubber ducky gift sticker go a long way!

duck centerpiecerubber ducky cookiesparty favor sticker

October 12th, 2015 |

TRICK or TREAT PARTY | SIMPLE HALLOWEEN SWEETS

trick or treat introHalloween is such a fun holiday, especially for kids! With the holiday falling on a Saturday this year, it offers up the opportunity to host a little party.  One of my favorite ways to entertain for Halloween is to invite neighbors over for sweets before trick-or-treating. Our pumpkin stripe party invitation is the perfect way to invite your guests – full of stripes, pumpkins and candy corn.

Halloween can give Mamas a to-do list a mile long, between costumes, school parties, candy for trick-or-treaters, etc. The idea of baking sweets for a party may be daunting enough for you to pull the plug on the idea.  Don’t let it!  Here are a couple tips for creating a clean, stylized presentation of store-bought goodies:

  • Create a clean look by using all white, black and orange sweets
  • Display all of your goodies on white cake stands and serving pieces, dress up one or two of them with an orange bow
  • Embellish store-bought vanilla cupcakes with a candy corn pumpkin, brownies with candy corn, and make sure you pick up some of the Halloween Oreo cookies!
  • Fill up little candy cups or baking cups with candy corn for little hands to grab
  • Use foam letter stickers (available at your local craft store) to embellish milk bottles or glasses with “boo” or the kids’ names.

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September 24th, 2015 |

PREPPY FOOTBALL BIRTHDAY PARTY

planterOne of my favorite parts of my job is designing custom parties for clients.  One of my repeat clients recently asked us to create a preppy football party for her son.  I’m thrilled to show you the darling details she pulled together – great attention to detail, preppy stripes, and masculine enough for the boys!  I hope you can pull some inspiration for your next tailgating get-together or “boy” birthday party!

front doorentry centerpiecefootball lanternshydration stationtablesslidersdessert tablefootball cookiescandy jarfootball lollipopspopcorn boxes

 

June 22nd, 2015 |

GINGHAM CHECK FIRST COMMUNION

gingham check first communionWorking with my custom party planning clients is truly one of my favorite parts of my job.  My clients invite me into their families, to help them plan a memorable event – a baptism, birthday party, bridal or baby shower, and in this case a First Holy Communion.  Held in Florida, we wanted to give the event a crisp, sunny color palette, and use classic haberdashery patterns for a masculine look.  A gingham check invitation design was born, and set the tone for the rest of the party.  (PS – our gingham check invitation is available in the shop in 8 different color ways!)

INVITATION

The event had a very classic feel to it, and there are some steal-worthy ideas that would be perfect to incorporate into a summer party.  Some of my favorite details include:

  • Guests were welcomed to the event with a sweet placecard display. Lollipops (with the guests’ names and table no. were placed on stickers) stood at attention in pots full of green moss.
  • During the cocktail hour, guests sipped on sweet tea in cups personalized with stickers and our foil-stamped straw flags. Cocktail napkins, stamped with a custom message added a personalized touch.
  • Our custom fabric, in a coordinating blue and white gingham check, was made into table toppers for the round tables and featured a yellow pom pom trim. The tables featured two different centerpieces from Flowerama: a gorgeous white lantern from Pottery Barn, wrapped in a white hydrangea wreath and a yellow vase full of “happy” daisies and yellow billy balls.
  • The kids had their own special table, also dressed in a gingham check runner, with big yellow balloons soaring above it.  We hung a “God Bless Marco” chair sign at the head of the table, for the man of the hour.
  • The dessert table carried out the sunny blue, yellow and white color palette with a yellow striped custom fabric backdrop, yellow candy including small bags of jelly beans accessorized with gift stickers, a gorgeous cake incorporating the gingham check pattern by Cakes by Pink, cake pops from Sweet Lauren Cakes, gingham check chocolate-covered oreo cookies from Sweeties by Kim, and a pennant banner that hung across the front.
  • As a keepsake for the communicant, we created a custom guest book, including photos of the young man and his family, along with pages for guests to write him a special note.

 

Marco_Reception_002Marco_Reception_033Marco_Reception_038Marco_Reception_039Marco_Reception_027Marco_Reception_031Marco_Reception_029Marco_Reception_025Marco_Reception_006Marco_Reception_020Marco_Reception_010Marco_Reception_005Marco_Reception_015Marco_Reception_016Marco_Reception_047Images by Stacey Woods Photography

June 16th, 2015 |

PINK FLAMINGO BABY SHOWER

DSC_0623One of life’s greatest joys is welcoming a new baby into a family.  So when my sister announced that she was expecting a baby, we were thrilled.  She and I are both blessed with charming (and active, rambunctious, and sassy) little boys, so when they found out they were having a little girl….well, let’s just say we were all tickled pink!  We come from a family of strong ladies – hard-working, entrepreneurs, caring, fashionable, and feisty – and it’s been 25 years since we welcomed a little girl into the family.  So, a party was an absolute must!

The ladies of the family threw a “Flamingo Sips & Dips” this past weekend to celebrate the upcoming arrival of my new niece, and we had a blast with this theme.  Since this is her second baby, we didn’t want to throw a full-blown baby shower, but more of a celebration and a reason to drink pink punch with the ladies!  I hope you enjoy the peek below of the party – it was such a blast!  We have a few more weeks before we meet the baby….we can’t wait!

Here are a few details to look for in terms of decor ideas:

  • We used our brand new Pink Flamingo party invitation to invite guests. This is one of my favorite designs, and it comes in 8 different color ways.  Perfect for a summer pool party, bridal or baby shower, birthday party or summer dinner party!
  • We welcomed guests to the party with a festive entrance, complete with pink flamingos accessorized with green striped bows, balloons and a boxwood wreath on the front door that held a onesie that I decorated with our pink flamingo image.
  • We set up one food buffet table to hold our appetizers and desserts.  The table was dressed with a palm print tablecloth, and held two centerpieces that may be my absolute favorite ones that I have EVER done.  We used basketweave vases from Target, and combined an assortment of hydrangeas, peonies, gladiolas and tulips in varying shades of pink and orange to create them, and topped them off with pink flamingos.
  • The food was all served on baskets full of greenery, and instead of using standard food tent cards, we used Kate Aspen brushed gold, mini picture frames in a fretwork design from Party City to hold the food names.  I loved the chic pop they gave the table.
  • Frog Prince Cake & Cookie Design created the most darling pink flamingo cookies for us as a little sweet option.
  • We set up a self-serve bar, making it simple for guests to help themselves, and to keep us hosts from running around filling up drinks!  Two drink dispensers held pink lemonade and citrus-infused water.  We embellished them with signage, gingham ribbon and pink tassels.  Lilly Pulitzer flamingo cups were the perfect addition, and looked darling accessorized with our green striped straws with foil-stamped straw flags.
  • We wanted a little nod to the ladies of our “flock”, so we displayed a baby photo of each of us girls on a lattice screen.  Guests had a blast looking at them!
  • To add a fun little “game” to the party, we asked guests to guess what the baby’s name will be.

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April 28th, 2015 |

FIESTA PARTY | CELEBRATE CINCO de MAYO WITH KIDS

fiesta party invitation horizontalCinco de Mayo is a colorful, festive celebration that typically is more geared towards adults.  I have a couple fun ideas for you, from my book Stylish Kids’ Parties, on how to throw your littles a colorful fiesta.  These ideas would also work smashingly well for a Fiesta birthday party!

Whether you are hosting a Cinco de Mayo party or a Fiesta birthday party, send your guests a colorful invitation to set the tone for the event!  We have two new designs in the shop that would be perfect: the fiesta and the confetti invitations.  (see images at the bottom of the post)  If you want to get crafty, you can add a glassine envelope of colorful confetti to it!

emma

pom pom trimDress up your basic party platters or cake stands with colorful pom pom trim from your local craft store.  One of my favorite ways to serve up lemonade is in mini mason jars with flower lids and striped straws. Looking to add a playful punch to your party?  Fill up a bowl with sprinkles and place your mason jar drinks in them for easy grab-n-go.

drink bottles verticalDecorate your tablesetting with a fringe centerpiece.  Using a wood number (age) or letter (initial), wrap it with a paper fringe garland and stick it into a pot of wheat grass.  The full DIY instructions are in my book, Stylish Kids’ Parties, along with a couple free printables.

centerpiecewrap fringe around the numberSend your little guests home with paper cone party favors full of candy.  I used pink and orange striped lollipops from Candywarehouse.com.  Throw in a couple of tacos and chocolate-covered churros, and you’ve got yourself a fabulous family-friendly Cinco de Mayo party!  Here are the two new invitations in the shop that would be PERFECT for a Fiesta party:

party invitations

 

April 7th, 2015 |

GOLF PARTY IDEAS | STYLISH KIDS’ PARTIES

golf party ideas introWith the Masters going on this week, I thought it was the perfect time to share some ideas for a golf themed party from my book, Stylish Kids’ Parties.  It’s such a timeless theme, and many of these ideas could be used for a kids’ birthday party or for a Masters viewing party this weekend.

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Infuse your party with design elements that will make your guests feel like they are celebrating on the 18th hole: a festive table setting with DIY décor ideas, a “putting green” dessert table, and themed desserts.

I set the table with a navy tablecloth, green seersucker napkins, and created a theme-appropriate centerpiece of whiffle balls and grass plants with DIY flags. Create your own flags with patterned paper and cardboard flags from Paper Source.  To further customization of your party décor, you can add your child’s age onto the flags.  You can find the whole DIY project in my book.

Get creative with your place settings; fill mini galvanized buckets with wheat grass, a tea and a personalized golf ball.  Tip: Use a dab of hot glue to attach the ball and tee together for stability. Infuse your theme into the centerpieces by filling vases with whiffle balls, and galvanized tubs with wheat grass and my decoupage flags.

will golf ball placecardgolf ball placecard horizontal

Golfers get thirsty, so make sure to set up a “water hole” with water bottles for easy grab ‘n go.

water bottles

Styling a dessert table around the Golf Classic theme is a preppy hostess’ dream come true.  A classic color palette, the option to embellish basic desserts with themed accessories, and a clean layout that allows for color-coordinated branding with paper goods.

golf dessert table

I designed this dessert table to look like it was sitting atop a putting green.  Using a piece of indoor/outdoor carpet that I found at my local Home Depot to line the tabletop, I covered the edges with a 4” wide navy blue and white striped grosgrain ribbon.

dessert table right angle vertical

To mimic the galvanized centerpieces and place cards on the lunch table, I used a three-tiered galvanized stand in the center of the table, as well as two containers holding wheat grass and my decoupage flags. I wrapped navy and white striped ribbon around each tier of the three-tier stand, and topped it with a paper fan that I created out of coordinating paper.  You could create the same look with any scrapbook or wrapping paper.

cupcakes on standDesserts on the table included cupcakes with coordinating flag toppers (a free printable in my book!), sugar cookies shaped like golf balls from Firefly Confections, powdered sugar donut “holes in one”, chocolate-dipped pretzels or “irons & woods”, and polka dot candy cups full of candy.

golf ball cookies

holes in one horizontal

A few fun ideas to embellish the theme:

  • Use a Lucite tray upside down as a riser, and line whiffle balls underneath it for a pop of the theme.
  • Whether it’s plastic or bamboo utensils, you can quickly embellish the handles with washi tape.  Available in endless patterns and colors, it’s a great way to carry out your theme.

ball toss horizontal

Kids like to be active!  Keep your guests occupied during the party with a simple ball toss game.  Using galvanized containers, I wrapped them with coordinating ribbon and labeled them each with a different number.  Whiffle balls are the “toss” of choice, to ensure nothing gets broken when the balls start flying thru the air.  Provide a prize for the child that gets the ball in the most buckets.

golf party favor

Send your little golfers home with their very own “bucket of balls”.  Fill a galvanized tub with a bag of whiffle balls and tees.  Tie my printable gift tag that says, “Thanks for teeing off with me!” to the side of the bucket.  PS – this would also make a darling hostess gift if you are attending a Masters party this weekend!

This theme is always one of our most requested during the summer months, so I’m pleased to tell you that we have a brand new invitation suite for this golf theme!  You can view the preppy golf party invitation here, along with the coordinating return address stickers and gift stickers for party favors.  And to kick off the launch of this new design, I also sourced a few key elements for you to use for your golf party….see them below!

partyelementsPreppy Golf Party Invitation and Stickers from WH Hostess | Mini Galvanized Buckets for Placecards | White Whiffle Balls | Navy Blue Striped Paper Cups from The TomKat Shop | Navy Blue and White Striped Party Favor Bags from The TomKat Shop

 

March 15th, 2015 |

CINDERELLA PLAY DATE

introWith the brand new Cinderella movie opening this weekend, I decided to host a small princess playdate with two of my favorite littles.  I partnered with Party City to give them a morning full of princess dresses, magical treats and of course, a little royal dance party.

items on couchWhen it comes to dress-up (at any age), it’s all about the dress.  When Olivia and Ava arrived, I had the new Cinderella dresses, slippers, crowns and magic wands laid out for them.  They were greeted with squeals of delight, and the girls immediately “HAD” to put them on!  The dress itself has beautiful details to it; I absolutely love the pastel butterfly detail on the top.

dress detailThe girls had a blast twirling around in the big, puffy skirts!

girlsgirls togehterTreats are a must at any party or playdate!  I had my friend, Sandy of Firefly Confections, create sugar cookies that looked like magic wands for the occasion.  They were just fabulous, and the girls LOVED the shimmer on them!

treatsA little styling tip: I filled my white containers with simple white candy flowers from Candywarehouse.com, which allowed me to stand up the cookie magic wands, and the castle ring pops, adding to the festivity of the treats.  I also used our foil-stamped cocktail napkins with a gold monogram on them.  You know, a little extra “fancy” goes along way with the 4 year old crowd. 😉

cookie wandring popI blew up a bunch of princess pink balloons that floated on the floor and offered up a lot of fun during the royal dance party.

girls overhead

One of my favorite accessories from the Party City Cinderella collection is the beautiful magic wand.  Tulle, satin and sequins….what more could a little girl ask for?! The girls loved twirly them around, and my son, Daniel, even wanted to get in on the “bippity, boppity, boo!” that was happening!

wand detailIt was a fun day for everyone, especially me!  With a 1 year old boy, we spend most of our time playing with trucks, cars and farm animals.  Throwing a princess playdate was a spectacular treat!  These beautiful dresses and treats would be perfect for a princess themed birthday party too.  Check out this recent princess party for tons of gorgeous ideas.

kelly with girlsTHIS IS A SPONSORED POST. THE PARTY DRESS HAS RECEIVED PAYMENT, TRADE AND/OR PRODUCTS FROM PARTY CITY IN EXCHANGE FOR PROMOTION, HOWEVER ALL IDEAS AND OPINIONS STATED ARE MY OWN.

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