November 13th, 2009 |
Okay, ladies….do I have a party to share with you today! This party was created by a woman named Christine for her son’s 1st birthday. Christine’s words really give you a feel for the day and her planning process, so without further ado…..
“I wanted to give my Aidan the world for his first birthday. I knew for a long time that I wanted to do an airplane theme. With that decided, everything just came together. Before Aidan was born, I had been to several destination weddings and a couple things had stuck out in my mind. I loved the idea of luggage tags as a favor, and knew I wanted to create a “suitcase” of goodies for our guests.
As a centerpiece. we had “EARTH” balloons, which were provided by Ron Alvarez, and each table had a runway, created by April Neubold. My family and I bought wood airplane kits at a craft store and painted them, to add to the centerpieces. It was hard work, but all worth it for this special day! We wanted to make sure this party could really “TAKE OFF”! Invitations, luggage tags, coloring books, passports, tote bags and table cards were created by etsy designer Barbara Neely designs.
We went all out when it came to dessert! Aidan’s Auntie Joann and Uncle Jonny, of San Francisco’ best ice Cream Bi-Rite, provided a special ice cream cart. We had personalized wood spoons for the ice cream, that were made by Minhee Cho from papercupdesign.com. A candy buffet was done by Jeri Martell from www.martellsweetstop.net. The cake was done by Sonya Hong from Butterfly Cakes; it was a 3 tiered cake of strawberry and chocolate, which was a big hit!
Gift boxes for each child, ID tags, and posters were designed by Zusy Zamora of Maziette Paperie. We had a box of goodies for each family to bring home as a party favor. They were filled with snacks from around the world, and also our family favorite, Torani Syrup in different flavors.
As I mentioned above, I truly wanted to give Aidan the world for his party….”
Photography by Matt Murillo and DMG Photography
November 12th, 2009 |
Okay…I have been holding back Holiday ideas for weeks now! But, what can I say?! I’m a planner, and if you are anything like me, you are already plotting out your Christmas decorations and party plans…..so better to see these ideas sooner rather than later, right?
This is one of my favorite ideas for the season. It combines two great party ideas – the cocktail party and the cookie exchange – into one fabulous evening. Cookie exchanges are typically done either as a “ladies” party or with children. Not that they aren’t fun (and don’t think you won’t see a cookie exchange post for kids coming up soon!)….but this concept has the makings to be super fun!
Invite your guests with this colorful invitation from Tiny Prints. Add in an extra card that asks people to bring a cookie to share, and have them tell you what type they will be bringing when they RSVP so you don’t have 15 different chocolate chip cookies out on your buffet!
The decor for this party should be focused around the cookies. Set up a buffet table with different serving pieces to house the cookies – cake plates, platters, tiered serving dishes. You should have a stack of small plates, either china or paper, and napkins for people to use while mingling. Knowing that you will have a TON of cookies on hand – have small paper boxes and ribbon set up at the end of the table, so people can bring some home with them. I think it would be darling if you did a personalized label to put on the boxes too – saying something like “Cocktails & Cookies at The Smiths 2009″.
There are so many fabulous cookie recipes out there…..and I am sure I will be sharing some with you in the near future. I love decorating sugar cookies each year, and although I try, my cookies just don’t turn out as beautiful as the ones above! You can find them at Eleni’s, and they do ship – perfect for a cookie party or a hostess gift this season!
Images: decorations (bhg.com), drinks (brides.com), invitation (tinyprints.com), cookie buffet (elenis.com)
November 11th, 2009 |
I am just getting back in town from a lovely weekend away with my husband….in trying to get my ducks in a row, I realized that I didn’t schedule a post for today! Sorry! So, here is a bit of wedding inspiration to get us thru today. I have been loving the use of grey lately – it’s the perfect compliment to so many colors, and so sophisticated when paired with white for a wedding!
Has anyone seen any great grey combination parties or table settings lately?
Images: wreath (stylemepretty.com), cake (thecakegirls.com), table setting (aperfectevent.com), bridesmaids (loveandsplendor.com), cheese display (toddevents.com)
November 10th, 2009 |
Life has been pretty busy lately….work, website (lots of new stuff coming soon!), new house to decorate, and I am helping one of my best friends plan her son’s first birthday party. Little Caleb was nicknamed “Frogger” from the start…so we thought it was only appropriate to have a Frog Prince theme party!
You’ll have to survive on just this little sneak peak for now….but let me tell you, this theme is coming together beautifully! So many little details…I can’t wait to show them to you! The party is this weekend – so stay tuned for more pictures and lots of great ideas next week!
Images property of The Party Dress
November 9th, 2009 |
If your child is a budding Picasso or Monet, throw an art-themed birthday party. Invite your guests with this colorful invitation from Minted. This party is all about color and art activities….so make sure you ask your guests to bring an art smock (or an old shirt from Dad will do) to wear.
Infuse your party with color….especially the food. Serve trays of veggies – bright red peppers, orange carrots, green broccoli. Red Hawaiian punch served in a big punch bowl. And a colorful dessert buffet that will make the children squeal with delight! Bowls of colored M & M’s, rock candy, solid color lollipops. For the birthday cake, buy (or bake) a large sheet cake with plain, white frosting. You can have the kids decorate the cake using the M & M’s – challenge them to see how artistic they can make it!
There are so many options when it comes to activities….depending on the age of the children, and how messy you want your house to get! I would pick up one of the pipe-cleaner kits from Land of Nod. The kids can make anything and everything with pipe-cleaners. Glasses, hats, sculptures….sky’s the limit! Another idea is to make a special wall in your child’s bedroom by wallpapering it using a “empty frames” wallpaper. Each child can draw a picture on the wall and your child will have her very own art gallery in her room!
LOVE. LOVE. LOVE this idea. Ask the kids to all bring bags of their broken crayons….you know they all have them!…chop them up into small pieces, mix them up, and bake them into new crayons. It’s a fun activity and you can bag them up for the kids to bring home as a party favor.
Directions: Heat the oven to 250 degrees. Using a mini-muffin pan, fill each mold with assorted colors of crayon pieces (paper removed) and bake until the crayons melt, about 10 to 15 minutes. (Tip: Place a sheet pan under the crayons to catch any drips). Once they’re cool, remove the crayons from the pan and smooth any rough edges by rubbing them on a knife.
An art party is perfect for a creative child. Have fun with it!
Images: crayons napkin (theknot.com), invitation (minted.com), colored pencil centerpiece (rachaelraymag.com), paper garland (magchuck.com), dessert buffet (makemerryevents.com), art supplies (queensmamas.com), pipe-cleaner kit (landofnod.com)
November 6th, 2009 |
I was sent these pictures from Heavenly Blooms, a floral design firm located in Orange County, California. They put together a beautiful baby shower – the perfect combination of “baby-sweet” and “mama-sophisticated” that I love so much – and I hope you take away a few fun ideas for your next baby shower! Here is a little description of the party from Jaclyne at Heavenly Blooms:
“We at Heavenly Blooms love baby showers! It’s the perfect occasion to be creative and have fun for a very special “little” reason. Our theme for this shower was simply BABY. We incorporated everything baby, but with a boyish, preppy edge. The shower luncheon was held at a private Southern California estate on a beautiful spring day, so we used a color palette of yellow, apple green, and shades of blue with lavender accents.
The place card table was adorned with black and white baby photos of the Mama & Daddy to be…as well as the baby’s first “picture” (an ultrasound image). Place cards were printed on baby blue, green and cream harlequin patterned paper and placed in a silver frame. The table centerpieces consisted of three different styles – floral arrangements in material covered square vases, wheat grass clusters in silver mint julep cups, and floral paves in silver mint julep cups. Other table decor included hand painted wooden blocks, small rubber ducks and hand painted wooden trucks. We used custom-built, hand painted wooden boxes that looked like baby blocks that made quite an impression – they stood over 7 feet tall !!! They were placed all over the party area and were accented with stuffed animals. Floral pomanders were hung inside of the white umbrellas providing shade over the various buffet tables.”
I just love those hanging floral pomanders, don’t you?! For more inspiration, check out the Heavenly Blooms gallery and blog.
November 6th, 2009 |
Jaclyne from Heavenly Blooms was nice enough to share a tutorial with us on how to make these darling floral pomanders, so you can try making them at home for your next party!
Oasis (the spongey green floral foam) has come a long way and now is available in different size spheres. We used to have to shape the blocks into balls ourselves – but not anymore! So, start with a 4″ oasis sphere
(already pre soaked in water), and tie the ribbon around it twice. Make sure the ribbon is secure enough and won’t unravel by knotting the top. Add fern pins to the top of the ribbon to help secure it in place.
For the rose pomanders, you will use about two dozen roses. The amount of roses needed will vary based on the rose variety used. Some roses have smaller heads… Cut the stems short, leaving about an inch of stem left. It is easier and faster to precut the roses in advance.
Always start inserting the roses at the top, then work your way down and around.
** Be careful! Once you insert the stem, try not to remove it and reinsert it because the oasis will start to crumble**
**Sometimes it is easier to hang the pomander from a hook in your doorway or under a cabinet. You could even tie the ribbon to a curtain rod and hanger.**
Voila – you’ve created your floral pomander. For stability, you can also use floralock spray adhesive
to secure the stems in place.
Thank you so much, Jaclyne! I can’t wait to try making these…perfect for my next baby shower or birthday party!
November 5th, 2009 |
Fall is the perfect time to host a cozy dinner party at home. Whether you are celebrating someone’s birthday or just looking for an excuse to gather good friends….a dinner party at home is the perfect way to celebrate the weekend.
Fall food lends itself to comfort foods, almost Thanksgiving-like food. For this birthday dinner party, I have planned a menu that includes baked-stuffed chicken breasts with arugula and fontina cheese, acorn squash rings, and crisp potatoes with aioli sauce. For dessert, instead of serving a birthday cake – go for something decedent like a triple-chocolate mousse (looking oh, so elegant in champagne flutes!)
Images: girl (jcrew.com), placecard (myhomeideas.com), invitation (minted.com), candle centerpiece (bhg.com), table setting (dwellstudio.com)
November 4th, 2009 |
Since I am on an artichoke kick today – I thought I would share this centerpiece idea, too! This centerpiece would be the perfect compliment to my artichoke place cards below!
Image via Better Homes and Gardens
November 4th, 2009 |
Looking for a creative placecard idea for you next dinner party?! One that doesn’t involve a Halloween pumpkin or a Thanksgiving theme?
I love this idea….using everyday produce, you can take something ordinary and make it special.
Image via Glam