May 17th, 2010 |

Cinco de Maia: Fiesta Themed 1st Birthday Party

I have been SO excited to share this party with you!  I know I dangled a carrot in front of you on Friday with a peek at the inspiration board…..but trust me, it was well worth the wait!

So, where to begin?!  Let’s start at the beginning….Maia’s mommy contacted WH Hostess to do a custom inspiration board for her daughter’s 1st birthday party.  She wanted a fiesta-themed party – since it was Maia’s first birthday (and it fell the beginning of May), how could we resist not doing a “Cinco de Maia” theme?!  You all saw the inspiration board here, and here is what we came up with:

The missoni-like, zig zag pattern from the invitation set the color palette for the party.  Hot pink, orange and yellow made a festive combination that we used for the entire event!  Some of my favorite elements to the party included the fabulous ribbon chandelier hanging over the table, a custom banner (featuring the zig zag pattern), and the amazing patterned paper lanterns from Jonathan Adler (aren’t they just perfect for this theme!?).  Cupcake toppers took on a modern look with an updated square shape, and jars of candy made for a very colorful table!

Maia’s mom did a fabulous job carrying the color palette throughout – notice the coordinating izze drinks, the balloons and the beautiful flowers!  She displayed the party favors beautifully – mini bubbles (wrapped with custom labels) and hot pink maracas (embellished with a zig zig gift tag) were placed on a 3-tier serving piece on the table.  A great idea that you could adapt for any party!

This was such a fun party to work on – and you know what I love about it?!  It’s simple.  It’s all about one fabulous pattern, three beautiful colors and a couple key decorations that pulled it all together!  Great job, Kristen!  And a happy, happy 1st birthday, Maia!

The ideas from this party could easily be translated into any type of summer party – a birthday celebration, a bridal shower, or a fiesta-themed dinner party!  To see more parties planned by WH Hostess, click here.  And for more details about the party goods created for this party, here you go:

 

Party Goods by WH Hostess: zig zag invitation, wraparound address label, notecard, gift tags, bubbles, cupcake toppers, banner, and ribbon chandelier.

Photography by Jessica Christ Photography

 

May 14th, 2010 |

Sneak Peek: Cinco de Maia

I’m leaving you today with a sneak peek of our latest party from WH Hostess.  This is the custom inspiration board I created for a sweet 1 year old named Maia.  Her mom came to me to create a concept and party goods for her fiesta themed party….and here is where it all started!  Head on back on Monday to see how the party turned out!  (PS – it’s amazing and you won’t want to miss it!)

Images:  invitation (whhostess.com), dessert table (amyatlas.com), mexican banners (orientaltrading.com), tissue paper flower centerpiece (realsimple.com), colorful hurricane glasses for margaritas (amazon.com), pitcher decorated with colorful rubber bands or ribbons (bhg.com), colorful maracas (orientaltrading.com), table setting with hanging stars and paper lanterns (socialcouture.com)

May 14th, 2010 |

WH Hostess: New Collections

Happy Friday, Everyone!  I hope you are all looking forward to the weekend!  We’ve had so many fabulous party features this week – from a WH Hostess “Princess Chic” party, to a stunning, Spring baby shower, ideas for a preppy table, and for a sophisticated outdoor table – it’s been a busy week!  I promise next week will be just as enticing!

Before I leave you for the weekend, I thought I would introduce you to some of our new collections from WH Hostess.  Planning a party this summer – WH Hostess has fresh, modern party supplies that are sure to make you the hostess to envy!

I’m L-O-V-I-N-G this new kelly green and aqua t-link pattern!  Perfect for a “Palm Beach Preppy” party this summer!

Who doesn’t love a garden party?!  Perfect for a child’s birthday party or a baby shower…..or even a garden walk event!

Blue elephants are all the rage this Spring!  I love our take on the cute, preppy circus theme!  (also available in pink & green!)

This vintage fire truck collection is perfect for a sweet little boy!

Our confetti invitation is colorful and festive!  Perfect for an adult’s surprise party or a child’s candy-themed party!

May 13th, 2010 |

Hanging Flowers

I fell in love with this image from The Knot – it’s the perfect solution to the “I want large floral centerpieces, but don’t want to block my guests view”  problem!  Not to mention it looks so new and fresh!  I think you could take this concept and scale it down a little bit for an outdoor party this summer, too.  If you have a covered patio or want to pitch a party tent in your backyard, you could totally re-create this look.  A few hanging plants (make sure to get the “pretty” pots), a few hanging candles – it’s sure to leave your guests saying “wow!”

May 12th, 2010 |

Real Party: A Baby Shower for Zoe

 

This beautiful baby shower was sent to me by photographer, Wendy Updegraff.  Thrown for her sister, no detail was left undone!

The color palette for the party was inspired by the Tiny Prints invitation.  A tent covered the beautiful table setting, and was decorated with paper lanters and a special “baby Mama” banner.  They made sugar scrub jars for the party favors and it doubled as the placecard.  My favorite decorative element is definitely the huge Z they covered in artificial flowers…the baby-to-be’s name is  Zoe.  Baby Zoe’s room is to be decorated with bla-bla dolls so they made tags on the back of all of the chairs with cut outs of different bla-bla dolls.   And here is a darling activity: while the guest of honor, opened gifts, they had baskets of ribbons, glue and buttons for the guests to make baby Zoe hair clips!  Too cute, right?!


May 11th, 2010 |

Lunch at Home with Friends

lunch at home with friends

My social life has definitely changed over the last year….we moved to the suburbs, I work from home, and all of my friends have multiple children.  So a lot of times, we find time to spend together right smack in the middle of the day – for me it’s a much-appreciated, quick break from work – for them it breaks up their routine!  Lunch ideas have been on my radar more and more lately…..especially simple, one dish meals.

This recipe for a salad nicoise sandwich is the perfect choice!  It’s fresh, different….and you get your salad and your protein all in one dish!  It looks pretty too!  The perfect compliment to a simple table setting (toddler-proof, of course!).

Images: table setting (hgtv.com), candles (potterybarn.com), drinks (inthenowweddings.com), sandwich (bhg.com), cheese plate (annstratton.com)

15% Off Chic Wedding Stationery from Minted.com

May 11th, 2010 |

Preppy Spring Table

Last week I shared my inspiration board for my family’s Mother’s Day dinner (see the post here – it would be perfect for any summer party!)  I’ve had so many people asking to see how it turned out, I thought I would show you a couple of pictures!

The main focus on the table were my monogrammed preppy plates – like I told you last week, I have been DYING to whip these little beauties out – Mother’s Day was the perfect occasion!  These melamine plates are darling and add such a {pop!} to any table.  The come in tons of patterns, and even have matching lucite trays and coasters!  Definitely check them out – and remember them for gifts!

May 10th, 2010 |

Parties by WH Hostess: Princess Chic

I’m totally excited to share today’s party with you!  I recently had the pleasure of working with a sweet mommy from California to create a custom princess party for her darling 3 year old, Morgan.   So, without further ado, here are  all of the fabulous details from the party….

The concept for the party was unique: create a “pink” princess party, but with some “rocker chic” details.  Our bubble gum pink and black color palette was born!  The first step was creating a custom invitation that would make the guests “ooh” and “ahh”!  WH Hostess came up with this darling, two-sided invitation – it had the birthday girl’s picture on one side, and polka dots and crystals on the other!  I created a “logo” that was used on the invitation and repeated throughout the party.  After all, it wouldn’t be a princess party without crowns and magic wands, right?!

The decor for the party was whimsical and fun, and the black accents added a modern edge to the traditional “princess” look.  Some of my favorites: welcome signs sticking out of plants at the front door, black urn centerpieces with custom “magic wand” centerpiece sticks, a custom circle banner (complete with Morgan’s crown logo), pink and black polka dot balloons, and…..wait for it……a series of four ribbon chandeliers that hung above the food table.  I love this whimsical, vertical element…..it added a touch of drama to the event!

One of my favorite elements to the decorations is the photo wall that Morgan’s mommy created.  She took a somewhat “bland” area in the community center, and crafted a stunning focal point by simply hanging pictures of Morgan (all dressed-up with pink paper and polka dot ribbon).  The best part of this idea?!  The pages fit perfectly into a scrapbook after the party- so now Morgan has a wonderful picture book to look at whenever she wants!

 

As all of you mommies know, activities are KEY when entertaining a bunch of 3 year olds!  A princess bounce house in the courtyard was definitely the main attraction, but the kids had plenty of options to keep themselves busy.  They decorated magic wands and did some crown crafts, and they also had an amazing princess “dress-up” corner!

 

No party would be complete without a dessert table!  Morgan’s pink dessert table was covered with candy jars full of bubble gum, marshmallows and m&m’s, cupcakes with shimmery sprinkles and custom toppers (some even had crystals on them!), and veggie cups.  We got creative with the names on the labels – simple names like “Cinderella’s Candy Bracelets”, “Snow White’s Apples”, and “Sleeping Beauty’s Marshmallows”.  And I can’t forget the “eat your veggies” stickers on the veggie cups!  One of my favorite party tips for kid’s parties is to dress up basic, paper cups with a novelty sticker.  Simple, but it adds a personal touch and helps you carry your theme throughout the party.

Such a fun party to plan!  If you are in need of a little inspiration, or full-blown party planning – let WH Hostess plan your next party!  Here’s a little recap of all of our Princess party items, now available on WH Hostess!

Invitation, fill-in-the-blank thank you notes, cupcake toppers, stickers, signs, magic wand centerpiece sticks, banner, and ribbon chandeliers.

 

May 6th, 2010 |

Little Lamb Baby Shower

 

A Little Lamb baby shower is a darling theme that can evoke a sense of charm and nostalgia for most anyone. If you can appreciate vintage finds and love modern entertaining, perhaps you will consider this for your next baby shower. This theme is ideal for an intimate brunch with friends and the Mommy to be. Following these few easy guidelines will guarantee you to stand out, as the hippest of hostesses.

  • Start with a great invitation. I love this one from Minted. Although the style appears traditional, the soft palette lends itself to feel very modern and best of all it defines a color palette for the event.
  • Follow the same color story in your tablescape. First an an elegant baby blue table cloth. Then use several baby blue vases in varying sizes and shapes, adding flowers in soft ivory hughes but remaining mindful of the size of flowers in accordance to the size of the vase. Large head flowers in larger vases, smaller flowers in bud vases but most importantly, use only one type of flower per vase. The rest of the table elements should remain monochromatic so use ivory china and napkins. Keeping the table simple and elegant will help in highlighting your vintage finds and guard your theme form looking too “kitschy”.
  • Now, for the vintage flair. Pick up a few cute little lamb planters from a flea market or antique store. They are often found in pastel colors and can be easily introduced into your tablescape and/or peppered around the party. Fill them with flowers and place them near a welcome sign, or perhaps grazing near the cupcakes or refreshments. They will definitely get noticed!
  • A personal touch- Add vintage charm with these place cards. Learn the how to here.
  • Really commit- To the sweet color scheme that is. Finish off with these darling cupcakes from Country Living.
  • Must not forget-The bubbly. This is after all, a celebration. There is something about pink Champagne garnished with cherries that scream a fabulous grown up little shindig, but maybe that is just me. Just be sure to have a non alcoholic and “Mommy to be” friendly option….a shirly temple would be most fitting!

Stick to the plan and you’ll make a fabulous Host!

~ Natalie {Little Shindigs}

Images: Invitation (Minted.com), tablesetting (Caroline Roehm), cupcakes (Country Living), vinatge little lamb planter (Retro District), Pink bubly (Ruffled), place cards (Project Wedding)

May 6th, 2010 |

Meet Natalie…..The Party Dress’s Newest Contributor

meet natalie

I am SUPER excited to introduce you to our newest contributor, Natalie Robles of Little Shindigs!  Natalie is a vintage girl at heart, madly committed to modern entertaining.  She has never met a theme party she can’t get excited about!  She prides herself in finding new reasons to celebrate and has been known to use any excuse to host a party!  She owns a boutique event planning company in Los Angeles, California (Little Shindigs), specializing in unique and charming children’s parties.  Natalie’s creative team, although small (Cinderella is almost 6 and Iron Man is turning 4) also serve as her greatest inspiration.

We are thrilled to have Natalie joining our team!  Stay tuned for her first post (a darling baby shower!) and head over to her blog to see some of her daily inspiration.

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