July 11th, 2011 |

WooHoo! It’s Birthday Week!

It’s an exciting week around here….it’s BIRTHDAY WEEK!  My (32nd) birthday is tomorrow, so I thought we should take a cue and showcase fun, unique birthday party ideas ALL.WEEK.LONG.  Fun, right?!  There may even be a fun surprise for all of you too….but you will have to check back tomorrow for that news!

First up this week are creative birthday cakes.  Whether you are hosting a 1st, a 10th, a 21st or a 60th birthday party, the cake should be a key element.  Here are some of my favorite cakes (probably suited more for adult parties).

I love the texture on each on of these, the unique shape, the creative idea of stacking cupcakes atop a cake…fun, fun, fun!

If a theme party is on the docket for your child’s next party, take a look at some of these creative cakes.  Perfect for a beach party, under the sea party, or an ice cream social!

Images: macaroon cake (theknot.com), cupcake cake (epicurious.com), truffle cake (instyleweddings.com), pink snowball cake (theknot.com), banner cake (eatcakebemerry.com), under the sea cake (hellonaomi.com), surfboard cake (carriesellman.com), ice cream cake (bhg.com)

July 8th, 2011 |

Time to Luau!

Summer is the perfect time to host a luau-themed party!  Tropical details, bright colors and delicious food are all you need to wow your guests.  Traditional Hawaiian elements such as sand, shells, and floral prints can be used to decorate both an adults and kids table, while these four delicious bites will appeal to guests young and old!

1. caramelized Maui onion dip 2. papaya and avocado salad 3. char siu-glazed pork sliders 4. coconut lime shrimp

Images: pink tablesetting (instyleweddings.com), kids tablesetting (projectwedding.com)

July 6th, 2011 |

The Height of Style

I’m typically not one for tall, elaborate centerpieces….but oh, how I L-O-V-E this look!  Classic and modern all rolled into one.

Image via Michelle Rago

June 30th, 2011 |

TPD Magazine: Burger Bash

One of my favorite features in the latest The Party Dress Magazine was the burger bash photo shoot I did…..preppy seersucker, bold stars and a hint of patriotic pizzazz.  A burger bash is the perfect time to gather friends and family this Fourth of July.  Good food, and good friends….that’s what the holidays are about, right?

I’m a sucker for seersucker, so our party was designed around a blue and white color palette, with pops of red!  Floral pomander balls made from craft-store carnations served as centerpieces. The festive party space was dressed up with pennant banners, polkadot and striped paper fans, centerpiece sticks, lanterns, and coordinating food tent cards, candy jar tags and cupcake toppers.

I love creating buffet tables with bite-size food – so for this bbq, we made an assortment of burgers – sliders with brie and carmelized onions, cheeseburger kabobs, and burger bites served on waffle fries.  Cups of fries and fresh pickles complimented the main course, and everyone saved room for dessert!

A patriotic dessert table was full of candy, cupcakes with fondant stars by Two Sugar Babies, hand-iced cookies by Allyson Jane, cupcakes, and s’mores kits for the kids.

June 28th, 2011 |

TPD Magazine: Americana Picnic

The latest issue of TPD Magazine has tons of creative ideas for hosting a stylish Fourth of July party.  Today, we are showing off the details of a patriotic picnic with pure Americana style from Anders Ruff.  Enjoy!

To create a fresh take on a traditional Americana picnic, we mixed in a traditional red, navy and white with some accents of aqua and kraft.  Some of the graphics have a “distressed” feeling, making it feel like a classic American Fair.  Pinwheels and firecrackers give off the vibe of summer and celebration, and we mixed inmodern patterns to give it a fresh feel. This collection was designed to be versatile for any summer BBQ or 4th of July celebration.

The dessert table had navy with white modern dot backdrop, paired with a classic white tablecloth and a kraft paper overlay to make it less “formal” and give off the vibe of a true american fair celebration. Galvanized metal played a role throughout the entire party, but in small doses.  Metal lanterns hung from the ceiling, and a printable pennants banner from our collection hung on the front of the table.  A stunning cake by Got What It Cakes served as the centerpiece with a bright pinwheel decor. “All American” caramel apples sat on top of the cupcake tiers with a printed party flag, pinwheel cookie pops by by Oh! So Yummy, white chocolate covered strawberries gave a fresh “summertime” feeling, and kraft paper bags were filled with candy as a party favor.  S’Mores kits and festive sparklers and matches that were embellished to coordinate were on hand for some patriotic fun.

Images by Becca Bond Photography

June 27th, 2011 |

Game. Set. Match.

Since we are on a bit of a Wimbledon kick today, I thought I would show some creative ideas for a tennis-themed dessert table.  This darling table was designed by LouLou Events for a birthday party.  The star of the dessert table was the tennis court made of a wood frame and green m & m’s.  Footed bowls of chocolate “tennis balls” and mini tennis ball cookies from Libby from Polka Dot Cookies completed this table.  It’s such a simple, unique idea….perfect for players young or older (er)!

June 22nd, 2011 |

TPD Magazine: Bridal Bliss in Napa Valley

The second edition of The Party Dress Magazine launched this week and is chock full of party inspiration!  I plan to highlight all of the amazing contributions on the blog over the next month, and to kick it off today, I thought I would share the images from my sister’s bridal shower I recently hosted in Napa Valley.

When it came time for my only sister to get married, I knew I had to plan something special to celebrate the occassion…..not just an ordinary bridal shower or bachelorette party…..something unique, something classy that I knew she would remember always.  With her bridesmaids living all across the country, it made it simple to decide upon a destination bridal weekend celebration, and six of us headed off to a lovely weekend in Napa Valley, California for wine tasting, amazing food, and a lot of quality girl time!

We finished the weekend off with an intimate bridal shower at Domain Chandon.  Brunch and champagne tasting were on the menu, and I worked with a natural color palette of nude, rusty orange and moss green.  Seeing as thought this was a destination shower, I had to limit my decor and goodies to things that I could either carry with me on the plane, or pick up along the way.  I chose to have a local Napa florist create and deliver a centerpiece, and I packed two of my favorite mini cake stands (which I dressed up with Mokuba ruffled ribbon, to hold macaroons from Bouchon Bakery and cupcakes from Dean and Deluca, which were topped with custom fondant rose toppers by Two Sugar Babies.

Like most restaurants, I had a very basic white tablesetting to work with.  Paper placemats from our Indian Summer collection brightened up the table, each napkin was tied with a coordinating ribbon, and I finished off each placesetting with a coordinating placecard.  A “he said, she said” game brought about many laughs!

My favorite detail was the party favors: custom wine bags!  A cotton weave on the outside (with each girl’s initial on them), and our Indian Summer tile print fabric on the inside.  Perfect for summer picnics!

June 21st, 2011 |

Parties by WH Hostess: Under the Tuscan Sun

I recently had the pleasure of working with a mom and daughter to plan a custom party to celebrate Alivia’s 3rd birthday.  The theme?!  Under the Tuscan Sun.  The color palette?  Sunflower yellow, rusty orange, moss green and pops of chocolate brown.  We created a custom invitation and paper goods for the event, and helped plan the details remotely.  I was thrilled to see how darling the party turned out….I hope you enjoy it!

The party took place outdoors on their property in Virginia providing a stunning backdrop, and sunflowers took center stage.  Burlap tablecloths, baskets and woven dishes were used  to give the party a rustic, natural look.   The food buffet included three different types of bruschetta, olives, grapes, cured meats and cheeses, as well as some delicious sweets.

They set up an Italian soda bar with different flavored syrups so the kids could create their own concoctions.  The children sat at a small table out in the field, covered with sunflowers and even their own personalized drinking straws!

Photography by Christi Sullivan

June 15th, 2011 |

Celebrate Dad

Celebrate Dad with a golf-themed picnic this Sunday…..a crisp green and white color palette, some playful patterns, vases full of golf balls (and limes for a pop of green), and some golf themed treats.  Pure perfection….that will appeal to both the men and the ladies!

Images: centerpiece (theknot.com), golf ball cookies (whippedbakeshop.com), drink dispensers (epicurious.com), cupcake with flag (luralucille.blogspot.com), napkins (via Napkins with a Twist)

June 13th, 2011 |

Real Parties: Ball Park Gourmet Dinner Club

Today’s Real Party feature comes from Kate from Studio Lime Designs, who recently hosted her group of friends for a ball park-themed gourmet club dinner party.  She thought the theme would be really fun considering their month to host was June and baseball season is in its prime.  Also, since it was held on their patio,  a fun, simple menu that would work well with outdoor entertaining was a must.  The colors navy and brick red were used, because they are “all American” baseball colors and also festive for the 4th of July, which is just around the corner.  The menu was designed around typical ball park food – nachos, soft pretzels, hot dogs.  Signature cocktails included: “The Grand Slam” and iced tea, which was called “7th Inning Stretch Tea”.  Decorations included an old blackboard was made to look like a scoreboard, and was used as the backdrop for this table, vases of baseballs, peanuts and cracker jacks.

I love the classic baseball feel of this party…..I always get requests for ideas for baseball-themed birthday parties and this is PERFECT inspiration!

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