November 16th, 2011 |

TPD Magazine: Elf Party

When designing a new collection of party goods, I always try to think thru designs so that they can inspire other elements for the party.  Decorations, desserts – patterns that can be carried throughout the event from start to finish.  Our brand new Elf Collection debuted in the holiday issue of The Party Dress Magazine, and judging from the response, I would say our darling little elf will be making the rounds among LOTS kid’s holiday parties this season!

Designed to be oh, so classic with a crisp red, white and green color palette, snowflakes and our darling elf, this collection features all of the items needed to throw the perfect party.

When it came to decorations, we focused on red and white and saved the green for accents.  A touch of sparkle here, a crisp ribbon there.  Paper lanterns were decorated with ric rac and buttons (this is something you could do for any type of party!), and oversized swirl lollipops served as centerpieces.

When it came to desserts, I compiled a team of some of the most talented bakers I know.  I gave them each a copy of our collection designs and couldn’t wait to see what they came up with.  These darling fondant elves were made by Two Sugar Babies, and completely dressed up store-bought cupcakes!

Cake pops from Flour & Iced were decorated with red, white and green sprinkles (the little ball shape of sprinkles mimics the polka dot pattern in the paper goods). Allyson Jane made elf cookies by using an upside down ice cream cone cookie cutter! The Marshmallow Studio created these darling elf pops, and we styled them in a cute polka dot pitcher, which could also serve as a table centerpiece!

One of our favorite dessert ideas was to serve ice cream in tiny striped mugs, with a “dressed-up” cupcake topper in them.  Jars of candy were dressed up with striped ribbon and a coordinating candy jar tag (I love the little snowflake on them!).  Kids LOVE bringing sweets home as a party favor, too.  We got creative while filling the tubs of candy by striping the colors to mimic the collection patterns, and our cute little elf made one last appearance on the gift tag tied to it.

November 8th, 2011 |

TPD Magazine: Pumpkin Moss Centerpiece

This moss and pumpkin centerpiece is so easy to make, and adds a great pop to your fall or Thanksgiving tablesetting.  As featured in the holiday issue of The Party Dress Magazine, it requires minimal supplies and a few easy steps:

Step 1:

Gather your supplies: vase, styrofoam ball, moss, wood skewers, mini pumpkins, glue gun & glue sticks

Step 2:

Place the styrofoam ball atop the vase, and insert skewers into the bottom of the pumpkins.

Step 3:

Insert the skewered pumpkins into the styrofoam ball.

Step 4:

Once all of the pumpkins are in place, start gluing on your moss in between them.

Step 5:

Continue to cover the empty space with moss, so it is nice and full.

Step 6:

Once you have covered your ball completely with moss, clean up any loose pieces.

November 8th, 2011 |

TPD Magazine: Thanksgiving Dinner Party

November is a lovely time to entertain family and friends. Whether you are hosting an actual Thanksgiving dinner or not, take it upon yourself to set a gorgeous table, cook a delicious meal, and treat the special people in your life to a great evening. This tablescape was featured in the latest issue of The Party Dress Magazine (the holiday issue!).

To switch things up a bit from my usual, rustic Fall decor and tablesettings, I decided to set this table using a sophisticated neutral color scheme of ivory, pewter grey and accents of moss green. A bead-chain fabric table cloth, crisp white napkins, a pewter grey charger and basic white dishes set the base for our tablesetting. A placecard embellished with ribbon sat atop a ramiken ready to hold veggies. To add demension to the table, I added white pumpkins, votive candles and our moss and pumpkin centerpiece (in a grey wood grain vase).  Stay tuned for the DIY centerpiece instructions later this afternoon!

November 7th, 2011 |

The Party Dress Magazine – Holiday

It is with GREAT excitement that we launch the first Holiday issue of The Party Dress Magazine!  110+ pages full of ideas for Thanksgiving, Christmas, Hanukkah, New Years and winter entertaining.  Recipes, gift ideas, fabulous decor and even a free downloadable printable or two, this magazine will have you bookmarking ideas left and right!

I hope you all enjoy this issue….and please, pass it on to your friends!  You can purchase a luxe, glossy copy of the magazine in the shop.

This issue was made possible by the amazingly talented group of contributors we partnered with.  My assistant editor, Charyn Olsheski of Two Sugar Babies, Maggie Hemsworth of Delish Catering Chicago, Vana Chupp of Le Papier Studio, Christi Bennett of P is for Party, Beth Beattie, Jill Thomas of Modern Cupcake, Laura Winslow, Chris Nease of Celebrations at Home, Rebecca Propes and Shannon Helliker of Fresh Chick Design Studio, Maureen Anders and Adria Ruff of AndersRuff, Kim Stoegbauer of The TomKat Studio, Stefanie Richter of Anna & Blue Paperie, Jessica Kirkland of Pen ‘n Paperflowers, Melisa Fluhr and Pam Ginocchio of Project Nursery, Allyson Harvey of Allyson Jane Designer Desserts, Jessica Wilcox of Modern Moments, Laura Grim and Lindsey Ter Har of Double Take Event Styling, and Leanne Ambrogio of Sweet Style by Mrs. A in the Cove.

 

November 4th, 2011 |

Fall Wine & Cheese Party

Wine & cheese is a staple (and favorite) night in our house!  But it’s also a simple way to throw a party.  You don’t need to mess around with an entire meal or tablesetting – just put together one fabulous plate (I prefer my wine barrel lazy susan) and dress it up with some “accessories” such as nuts, and fruit.  This time of year, you can play into the “wine” colors with flowers, or a bowl full of fruit to place on your table.

Thinking of throwing your own party?  Style at Home as a great feature on creating a high/low wine and cheese party…check it out here.

October 17th, 2011 |

Halloween Sock Monkey Party

I came across this darling Halloween party for kids on Better Homes and Gardens, and I just had to share it with you.  As you all know, I have a soft spot for monkeys (my god-daughter is obsessed with them, and it’s also one of our best selling party collections!).  This sock-monkey twist on your traditional Halloween party is so cute….I love the colors, the patterns and there are some great activity ideas that you could re-create for any party!

Some of the activities include a candy corn relay race, and a matching card game.  Totally cute for kids!  Whoopie pies are dressed up with monkey faces, and check out these cute pumpkin straws!  Check out the feature on bhg.com for all of the darling details.

October 5th, 2011 |

TPD Magazine: Rehearsal Dinner

Gathering friends and family the night before a wedding is exciting….planning a party that has a whole different feel than the wedding….even more exciting! Beth Beattie recently planned and styled a stunning rehearsal dinner with sweet details that could be recreated and inspire any Fall party. The bride-to be was a Southern Belle from Alabama, so she wanted to create a rehearsal dinner that reflected her personality.

The location was the outdoor patio of Mason’s in Easton, Maryland with hanging lights and farmhouse chairs. The white linens were topped with a burlap runner, vintage mason jars and votives wrapped in lace. The placecards were made with burlap and chalkboard contact paper (the perfect DIY project). Minted adjusted the color of an invitation they had to a mint green, and it reflected the feel of the intimate affair with hanging lights. They also created a menu card to match.

A cake by Bay Country Bakery was made out of the groom’s favorite Italian cookies from Mike’s Pastry of Boston.  The evening was absolutely magical….the perfect start to a wonderful wedding weekend.

Photography by Leigh Miller Photography

 

September 28th, 2011 |

TPD Magazine: Fall Pizza Party

Looking for a fun idea for Friday night dinner this week?  Take cues from this festive Fall pizza party from Chris at Celebrations at Home.  Featured in the Fall issue of The Party Dress Magazine, it is stock full of ideas for creating an inspired table setting. Continue reading for more of the details as told by Chris….

After a long hot Summer, I love bringing the party inside for Fall.  Some of my favorite Autumn entertaining ideas revolve around food and I thought a pizza party with friends would be a great excuse for a casual gathering. In setting the table, we wanted it warm and cozy but not too fussy – in fact we set the pizzas on pedestals to serve as our centerpiece and make serving yourself easy. A bit of plaid fabric and a burlap border are the perfect base for our table. Utensils are tied and embellished with an Autumn leaf, napkins are rolled and bound with a luggage tag {doubles as a placecard and a favor}, and apple cider is served in flip-top bottles.

To make it a bit more interesting, I put an “international” spin on it and served up different flavor combinations to reflect different parts of the world – the USA {Hawaii}, the Mediterranean, and Italy. You can make the pizzas yourself, have your guests make them, or order from your favorite restaurant. Add unique signage for the individual pizzas by using maps to create signs-on-a-stick to stand up in your pizza pies.

I love how Chris carried the international/travel theme into the dessert table as well by using suitcases and globes as props!  The mini boxes pies are so cute….they would also make a darling party favor for any Fall party!

September 26th, 2011 |

TPD Magazine: Popcorn Bar

It’s been so fun highlighting all of the articles from the latest issue of TPD Magazine….and today is no different!  We are showing off the details of a fabulous Popcorn Bar designed by Jessica Kirkland from Pen ‘n Paperflowers.  Here are the details from Jessica….

The idea of an interactive Popcorn Bar came to me as I was preparing a slideshow/movie to watch for a Family Reunion I would be attending. The family movie was going to be shown at a family member’s home with 5 acres of property, horses and a gorgeous pool as the backdrop for the slideshow. I decided I wanted to create something kid-friendly and fun to go along with the movie and I needed it to be easy as far as food preparation for 50+ people. A rustic-style Popcorn Bar was just what I needed!!
My intentions were to create an interactive popcorn bar that would allow everyone to personalize their bags of popcorn. By selecting a seasoning (or two) as well as offering a few candies and peanuts to throw in the mix, this option allowed everyone to get creative and ultimately cater to a large array of popcorn palettes.

As a fun, special element for the children, I offeredcaramel popcorn balls I ordered from Kernel Encore and served them up on The Pastry Pedestal™.

In my research, I visited a local popcorn vendor, Kernel Encore, intending to choose three different flavors of popcorn for the popcorn bar. After more research, I decided to do the most simple, and cost-effective thing: I pre-ordered 10 bags of fresh, already popped popcorn from my local grocery store. I then ordered an array of popcorn seasonings, (Kettle Corn, Apple Cinnamon, Nacho Cheddar, White Cheddar, Ranch, Chili Lime, and Caramel) and a butter spritzer from Kernel Season’s website.
I also added another interactive element to the popcorn bar by creating a fun, simple game called “Mystery Popcorn Flavors”.  I ordered 5 different ”Sampler Bags” of unusual flavored popcorn from Kernel Encore. (Salt & Vinegar, BBQ, Watermelon, Peanut Butter and Taco).  With each of the flavors in a separate numbered basket, I challenged everyone to sample them and offered a prize to the person to guess all five flavors correctly.

The food preparation couldn’t have been more simple and I believe everyone had fun serving up their own snacks in preparation for the movie. A popcorn bar is such a versatile idea allowing for so many different creative avenues to choose from. With Fall just around the corner,  a rustic Popcorn Bar would be so fitting for any of your upcoming events. Just add a couple of pumpkins to the display or a few bales of hay and you’re ready for that Fall Festival or Thanksgiving dessert table you’ve been fretting over.

 

September 22nd, 2011 |

Parties by WH Hostess: Mod Spider

Spice things up this Halloween season by introducing a new, festive color palette to your celebration: black, lime green and magenta! We paired these three colors together, along with some tonal polka dots and one cute little spider to create a darling collection of party goods and ideas for hosting your next event.

Glittering black chandeliers were a fabulous addition to this creepy, crawly candy bash.  Hung above the sweets table, they helped to define the vertical space in the room, but also give a touch of glamour to the party.  We show you three different ways to serve everyone’s favorite dessert: the cupcake!  Fondant toppers by Two Sugar Babies, cupcake toppers from WH Hostess, and chocolate spider webs to top chocolate cakes.

Spider cookies with sparkling disco dust from Allyson Jane make quite a festive statement.  Purple, silver and lime green candy from Candy Warehouse looks darling and accessible in jars dressed up with candy jar tags. One of our favorite additions to this table are the mini chocolate bars wrapped in labels, and the cute little spider stickers on the bottoms of the chocolate kisses!

Bubbling, foggy, green punch was created by adding dry ice into the bowl, and helped to create quite a spooky party!

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