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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April 7th, 2010 |
Today’s party is just adorable! Sent to me by a Nashville, Tennessee mom – it’s a birthday party fit for pirates and princesses! Her 3 year old requested this theme all on her own (which I think is quite adorable and creative!), and it immediately conjured up images of eye patches and pink tutu’s!
Here are a few of the details:
- She had a custom illustration done by a friend to be used on the invitations, and another friend made the cupcake toppers as a gift to the birthday girl. (those are some crafty friends!)
- She did an easy DIY project: tutus made out of simple elastic banding and strips of tulle.
- The dessert table featured a few key items: the backdrop for the buffet was made from 3 pieces of foam board duct taped together and covered with a curtain from Target, and she made the pennant garland from felt and ribbon.
- The girls dressed up in tutu’s and eye patches!
Such a cute party – for more of the details, check out their blog, A Voice of Reason and (in)Sanity.
April 6th, 2010 |
It’s not just for cupcakes anymore! You can now dress up your cake plates (round or square) with these lovely paper, filigree wraps. Hmmm….my cakes just got a little bit prettier!
April 6th, 2010 |
With the weather getting nicer everyday, I find my self suddenly craving my very favorite dessert….a lemon tart. It’s light, citrus-y flavor makes this the perfect Spring/Summer dessert and I always find myself counting down the Winter months until it’s “appropriate” to bring this favorite dessert back into rotation!
I’ve tried numerous recipes over the years – but I have to say that my two favorites are from Tartine and Barefoot Contessa. What about you? Do you have a favorite recipe you wish to share?!
P.S. With the dessert table craze still going strong, I absolutely love the idea of making mini lemon tarts – they would be perfect for a dessert table with a yellow color story!
Images: slices of lemon tart (annstratton.com), individual lemon creme tart (bonvivant.wordpress.com), bowl of lemons (cafelynnylu.blogspot.com), mini lemon creme tart (foodbeam.com), individual lemon blueberry tart (lemonmeringue.com)
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April 5th, 2010 |
We often associate wine & cheese parties with the Fall – maybe it has something to do with the harvest, or maybe it’s just because the crisp Fall air makes us want to cozy up with a good glass of wine to keep warm. But let’s be honest – wine tastes good just about any time of the year – so why not plan a wine & cheese party this Spring?!
Perfect for a girl’s night out, a bridal shower, or a special birthday celebration – you can create a wine & cheese party with a Spring-y vibe! Save the full-bodied reds for Fall, and serve a selection of crisp whites, and fresh bubbles. Food can be as simple as a large artisinal cheese plate, with accompaniments such as grapes, an apple, a pear, honey and walnuts. Olive oil tasting can be really fun too. Cut up cubes of french bread, and line up small bowls of different oils to taste.
Keep your decorations light and fresh with flowers in shades of white, peach and lime green. I love the idea of arranging them in a white vessel – either a footed bowl, or a low bowl with a filagree pattern. It just adds to the light look of the arrangement.
Send your guests home with a small bottle of olive oil as a party favor. Beau-Coup has a darling bottle that comes with a customized label. It’s the perfect reminder of a fabulous evening!
Images: living room (styleathome.com), cheese plate (annstratton.com), olive oil tasting (brides.com), olive oil party favor (beau-coup.com), centerpiece and lemonade (stylemepretty.com)
Beau-Coup and Amazon.com are preferred sponsors of The Party Dress. For information regarding advertising, please click here.