April 20th, 2010 |
Earth Day is the perfect opportunity to invite a few friends over for a dinner party inspired by nature and your local farmer’s market. Bring the outdoors inside by creating a table setting full of white dishes and natural elements, such as bark and potted plants. I love the idea of using coasters of bark under your typical hurricane candles…..and you can add a pop of green in your cloth napkin.
If you haven’t noticed already, I have a true love affair with cake stands. The different heights add interest to my table and I love using them for things other than desserts! They are perfect for a cheese plate, or to serve appetizers, for stacking sandwiches for a casual lunch….you can really think outside the box and get creative with them! This set of three different sizes from America Retold are the perfect addition to your collection!
The fresh vegetables at the farmer’s market (or my local Whole Foods) gets me really excited to start cooking fresh, spring-y meals again after the long midwest winter! For this particular dinner, I would serve an English pea & ricotta tart, artichokes with bearnaise sauce, a crown roast of pork with rosemary, and fresh limeade to drink.
Images: invitation (minted.com), tablesetting (rebeccathuss.com), butterfly party favor (projectwedding.com), cake stands (the party dress via opensky.com)
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April 19th, 2010 |
I have been a busy bee this weekend working on some custom inspiration boards for clients. Everyone is having showers! Baby showers, couples baby showers and a few bridal showers thrown in for good measure. The board above was done as inspiration for my husband’s aunt – so I figured I could share it with all of you!
She is hosting a bridal shower at a restaurant in Ohio – the restaurant has a strong palette of peach and celery green. So I decided it was best to work with the color palette, instead of fighting it! The custom invitation from WH Hostess (not listed on the website yet, but if you are interested, e-mail me!) sets the tone for a fresh, summer afternoon.
Keeping the table setting fresh and light, I suggested centerpieces of peach peonies and greenery done in white footed bowls. A placecard embellished with ribbon is placed on each guest’s placesetting, and pear bellinis are to be served during lunch! A bridal shower is the perfect opportunity for a dessert table. Not only does it add a sophisticated “decoration” to the event, but it’s a great activity for the guests to partake in while the bride is opening her gifts. This dessert table from Amy Atlas is the perfect inspiration for our peach and green color palette. Fill candy jars, apothecary jars and footed bowls full of green, white and peach candy. Mini cupcakes, cake pops, sugar cookies, macaroons can be served on white serving platters, plates and cake plates. Create a “tree” using greenery and some flowering branches to use as the centerpiece for this table. Have guests write a note to the bride offering advice for her marriage. The notes can be hung on the tree – it will become a “wishing tree” for the bride and groom. Make sure to have cellophane bags (with a coordinating sticker on them) and people can fill them up with candy to bring home.
The ideas for this party could be used for just about any type of event – a special birthday party, a baby shower or a bridal shower. What I love about it is that they are simple, and can be used at either a restaurant or in a home. Good luck, Aunt Jane….hope it’s a beautiful party!
Images: lattice invitation (whhostess.com), centerpiece (stylemepretty.com), pear bellinis (realsimple.com), candy party favor (brides.com), placecard (marthastewart.com), dessert table (amyatlas.com)
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April 16th, 2010 |
This darling “birds and blossoms” birthday party was sent to me Dawn, who threw this darling party for her niece’s 2nd birthday.
The color palate was primarily hot pink and orange, with subtle splashes of light pink. The design was based around a fantastic print of paper that Dawn found at her local craft store. The invitations were made by Ink Obsession Designs
, and Dawn made all of the flower blossoms out of tissue paper, using the Martha Stewart shredding scissors. She made blossoms for the girl’s hair and boutonnieres for the little boys. For favors, she painted unfinished wood frames from Ikea and filled the frame with handmade bird prints. The children glued rhinestones on the frames as their craft. They played “pin the beak on the bird”, and had a blast during musical circle time. They had a make-shift photo wall, with a fantastic floral print wrapping paper that she found at The Container Store as the backdrop. The desert table and dining tables were inspired by the work of Amy Atlas
. Dawn’s favorite detail was the adorable floral cups she found at The Container Store! She filled them with pudding and Oreo crumbs and placed little flower lollies in the middle…..the perfect addition to her darling dessert table!
April 15th, 2010 |
Thanks to everyone for entering our Estilo Weddings giveaway! Cori – e-mail me your information and I will put you in touch with the shop to claim your prize!
April 15th, 2010 |
I’ve been in the mood lately to host a little gathering with my girlfriends. A chance to catch up and enjoy some springtime cocktails. With all of my friends having young children, it’s easier to get together after “bedtime”. Which is the perfect excuse to host a dessert party! I love the idea of a focused menu – no need to worry about appetizers, dinner and dessert – just pull together a well-edited menu of desserts. (my favorite part of any meal, anyway!)
I’m looking for a new color palette to play around with and love the tangerine orange mixed with shades of grey. I’m LOVING the hanging backdrop behind this dessert table from My Sweet & Saucy! This is a simple and inexpensive way to add a touch of drama to your table, and really define the space for your dessert table. You could easily craft this project using scrapbook paper and grosgrain ribbon. Try repeating the patterns from the scrapbook paper by lining your platters and cake plates with the same paper.
If you want to send your friends home with a little something – I have two ideas that are perfect! First, prepare individual bunches of tulips (wrapped in kraft paper with a sticker saying “thanks for coming!”) and present them in a big bowl at your front door for people to take as they leave. Second, these cocktail jelly beans from Beau-Coup are the perfect companion for a dessert/cocktail party!
Images: dessert table and cake (mysweetandsaucy.com), dress (jcrew.com), drink bottles (helennorman.com), tulips (brides.com)
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April 14th, 2010 |
I took a little break from my typical work day yesterday to go to a Giada book signing with my best friend and her 5-year-old, Emma. We both love Giada’s recipes – but Emma, oh, Emma absolutely LOVES Giada! She watches her show (which has inspired her to cook at the mere age of 5) and until yesterday didn’t actually know Giada was “real”!
She’s “real” alright – and was absolutely darling as she greeted Emma and I. Gave her a hug, asked her if she liked to cook – couldn’t have been sweeter! It was a welcome break in my week and I am so happy that I have this wonderful memory with Emma and Teresa!
If you haven’t flipped thru Giada’s new cookbook, Giada at Home, definitely pick up a copy – great, fresh recipes for Spring!
April 13th, 2010 |
I’m loving this placecard idea from weddingchannel.com for Spring! They inserted gerber daisies into a pot of grass, but you could easily take the same concept and simplify it for your next table setting. Try placing a gerber daisy into a small bud vase at each person’s place….and then pin a circle tag in the center of each flower with your guest’s name on it. Simple and charming.
April 12th, 2010 |
A couple of weeks ago, I posted the inspiration boards for a modern train party inspired by Thomas the Tank Engine. The party was for the son of Melisa Fluhr of Project Nursery. As a busy blogging-mom of two boys (including a newborn!), Melisa asked me to create a custom inspiration board and custom party goods for the party. As you know – really cute, creative parties for boys are tough to come by – so we really wanted to make this one unique! Thomas the Tank Engine was the inspiration for the party, but the designer in Melisa wanted a party that was more stylized and less cartoon-y than the typical, commercial parties you see out there. Mission accomplished! The party was a huge success, and Austin is sure to be the talk of his pre-school class! Check out all of the fun details below:
The party was held at their home in LA, and (lucky them!) the weather cooperated so the party could be held outside. The custom invitation set the tone for the party, and the Austin & Friends logo was used on party decorations throughout the event – everything from signs, to centerpiece sticks, to a custom banner. We used a color palette of red, aqua and cobalt blue. The colors were bold and modern, and when combined created such a happy, colorful vibe! Some of our favorite decorations included the use of 3 foot balloons for a modern statement and simple centerpieces that consisted of blumebox eco-friendly vases, shredded tissue paper, and custom centerpiece sticks.
The menu consisted of gourmet sandwiches, crust-less cream cheese and jelly sandwiches for the kids, mac & cheese squares, Chinese chicken salad in takeout containers, cups accessorized with a logo sticker were filled with baby carrots, snow peas and hummus.
The dessert table stole the show! The table was styled with two cupcake stands, plates of sugar cookies, jars of aqua and red candy, and a chocolate cake (from Costco, as requested by the birthday boy himself!). Two Sugar Babies created monogrammed fondant toppers for the cupcakes and sugar cookies, and a 3D train to top the cake. WH Hostess created coordinating cupcake toppers to add another touch of style.
Activities at the party included bubble fun (mini bottles of bubbles with custom stickers) and a trackless train that rolled thru their neighborhood. The kids were each given an engineer hat and train whistles as they boarded Austin’s party train – this was definitely the highlight for the kids! Party favors included Thomas the train tattoos, coloring paper, and homemade train-shaped crayons (packaged in cellophane bags with custom toppers that read, “Thanks for riding Austin’s party train!”). And candy…..lots, and lots of candy! Melisa ordered 28 lbs of candy from the Sweet Factory for her dessert table, and the kids had a great time filling up their bags with candy to bring home!
This party was so much fun to work on and I just LOVE the way it turned out! Melisa was a party-planner’s dream – she had a clear idea of what she was looking for, was open to ideas, and once she received her box of party goods from WH Hostess – she took our vision and made it an amazing reality! Way to go, Melisa! Head on over to Project Nursery today to see video footage from the actual party.
Below you will find a collection of images of the custom party goods WH Hostess crafted for the party. Everything from invitations, address labels, fill-in the blank thank you notes, a banner, signs, centerpiece sticks, bubble labels, cupcake toppers, and food tent signs and candy jar labels for the dessert table.
April 8th, 2010 |
I’m a sucker for blue & white. Pretty much all of the women in my family are – however, pair it with raspberry pink and it just makes me smile! I recently had a woman come to me to create a custom inspiration board and invitation for a bridal shower/luncheon. She wanted it to be a combination of her classic taste (and home decor) and the bride’s preppy modern look. I came up with this honeycomb stationery suite that includes a darling invitation, thank you note, placecards and cupcake toppers (that the host is using in mini fruit tarts!), and gift tags for the party favors. I love the crisp look of this – and I love how the inspiration board turned out!
I suggested using the color raspberry pink as the pop color up against the blue & white patterns. For the table setting: a crisp white tablecloth, raspberry napkins, the host’s blue & white china, and cobalt blue wine goblets. For the centerpiece, a combination of white filigree jars, and vases with raspberry pink peonies. To add a touch of the bride’s preppy modern style, we ordered the Preppy Plates’ lucite tray in the navy arbor pattern with pink monogram, and a set of plates in the same pattern to use for dessert (with the couple’s new monogram – the tray and plates make a lovely gift to the bride and groom).
Keeping the lunch light and Spring-y, I am coordinating a dessert buffet for the guests to enjoy while the bride opens her gifts. Sweet treats in navy, white and pink including: macarroons, mini fruit tarts, sugar cookies with the honeycomb pattern on them, apothecary jars full of pink candy, shot glasses with a scoop of raspberry sorbet, and a lovely cake. Sounds yummy and pretty, right?! I suggest serving all of these lovely treats on white dishes and cake plates. A navy tablecloth will really make these white dishes pop!
I just love how this party turned out – and I am so grateful to the host for allowing me to share these ideas with all of you!
You too can have these darling party accessories! Click on the WH Hostess button to the left to purchase these items. And please remember us for all of your party planning needs! Big or small – we LOVE to plan parties!
Images: honeycomb invitation (whhostess.com), table setting (horchow.com), flower party favor box (estiloweddings.com), mini blueberry tarts (stylemepretty.com), drinks (amberkarsonevents.com), desserts (vanillabakeshop.com)
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