Friday, July 30, 2010

Real party: a sweet baby shower

This sweet baby shower was sent to me by Jen Snow of Snow Loves blog. This shower is filled with DIY touches including that amazing fabric bunting. 

From Jen, the hostess:

"This weekend I hosted my first baby shower for a dear friend of also featured another first- my first sewing project- a flag bunting decoration that mom-to-be could use in the nursery afterwards. It was a time consuming project, but I am really happy how it turned out! I also made an easy paper garland (punched circles fed through the sewing machine- so simple!) that I hung from my dining room light fixture, and a diaper cake gift.

Guests could serve themselves bellinis, mimosas, raspberry lemonade, or quench their thirst with water bottles wrapped in custom labels, and munched on brunch food and yummy cupcakes from Susie's". 

Thanks so much to Jen for sending this lovely shower my way.  Beautiful work!

I am heading to NYC this weekend for my friend Amy's bachelorette party.  I'll be back with regular posts (and hopefully some fun stories!) on Monday. 

Have a wonderful weekend.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Giveaway from Fun Favors!

I am excited for today's giveaway as it is perfect for all you party planners, hosts/hostesses and anyone who loves to entertain.

A party decor set will be given away courtesy of Fun Favors, a great Etsy shop that specializes in cookie favors and party decor. The giveaway includes all the following from the Retro Chic collection (a $55 value):
  • 1 banner
  • 2 sets of cupcake toppers
  • 2 sets matching tags
  • 1 set of drink flags
Fun Favors will personalize the decor for the winner!

How to enter:
  • Head over Fun Favors' Etsy page and check out the party decor products and cookie favors
  • Leave a comment on this post with your favorite item 
  • Eligiible to US residents only
A couple of my faves are the Sweet Cupcake invites and the wedding dress cookie favors.  So cute!

The giveaway will end on Sunday, August 1st at 11:59pm CT.  A winner will be chosen at random and announced on Monday, August 2nd.  Good luck and I look forward to your comments!!

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Real party: a vintage/garden bridal shower, part 2

I am so excited to share part 2 of the vintage/garden bridal shower I co-hosted because today is all about the delicious brunch menu, yummy cupcakes and more fun details!

Be sure to check out part 1!
We had a brunch cocktail table set up with build-your-own mimosas, bellinis and bloody mary's.  If you haven't noticed already, I am a huge fan of alcoholic beverages at showers. 
I used a free download for the drink tags via Eat Drink Chic.  I absolutely love finding free downloads for party stationery.  I am beginning to think I should create a section on this blog that has a list with links to all the great free downloads out there.  Would that be something you (dear readers) would use?
We used clear wine bottles for the peach juice and orange juice. 

A pretty drink dispenser filled with refreshing lemon water.

Kristin chose her favorite cupcakes from Cafe Latte in St. Paul for dessert, chocolate with vanilla buttercream.  I embellished them with an edible pansy from one of my favorite Mpls Farmers' Market vendors, Dehn's Garden.

A side view of the dessert table

I purchased mini chalkboards from JoAnn Fabrics, stained the wood frame and used them to label the dessert.  I was running out of time at this point and some of the details toward the end received less attention, like my ugly handwriting, for example. 

I also used a (larger) chalkboard to display the menu. 

We had an awesome cheese platter as well as four different types of quiche and egg bake.  The quiche pictured above was a tomato, basil, mozzarella quiche and was delicious. 

Tomato, basil, mozzarella quiche (recipe adapted from All Recipes)


1 tablespoon olive oil
1 onion, sliced
2 tomatoes, peeled and sliced
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/4 - 1/2 cup fresh basil
4 eggs, beaten
1/4 cup milk
1 Tbsp dijon mustard
1 Tbsp sour cream
salt and pepper to taste
1 (9 inch) unbaked deep dish pie crust
1/2 fresh mozzarella ball (you can use more but I only used half)
1/4 cup shredded parmesan


1.Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C). Bake pie shell in preheated oven for 8 minutes.  Remove and lower heat to 350 degrees. 

2.Meanwhile, heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Saute onion until soft; remove from skillet. Sprinkle tomato slices with flourl, then saute 1 minute on each side. In a small bowl, whisk together eggs, dijon, sour cream and milk. Season with salt and pepper.

3.Place the tomatoes in the bottom of pie crust. Layer onions, basil and cheese. Cover with egg mixture.

4. Bake for 20 minutes and then sprinkle with the parmesan.  Bake for another 20-25 minutes until filling is puffed and golden brown. Serve warm.

We also served a potato, artichoke, onion and goat cheese quiche that was bursting with flavor.  Click here for the recipe but please note these modifications I made; used sliced red potatoes that had been cooked in a 400 degree oven for 15 minutes instead of canned potatoes and substituted red onion for green onion and used goat cheese instead of swiss. 

Delicious cinnamon-rhubarb muffins
Kristin (the bride-to-be) and one of her bridesmaids, Molly.

The shower was a huge success and I am thrilled with how everything turned out.  A lot of the elements incorporated into the shower were re-used from another occasion or DIY.  It was a very budget-friendly shower and all the details were fairly easy and approachable. 

My next event is a Mexican fiesta bachelorette party for my sister coming up in a couple weeks...and I am traveling to NYC with a bunch of girlfriends for my friend Amy's bachelorette party.  Have I mentioned that my two besties and my sister are all getting married within the next 12 weeks???  It is complete insanity but has also been very fun!!! 

Monday, July 26, 2010

Real party: a vintage/garden bridal shower, part 1

I co-hosted a shower for my best friend Kristin yesterday with a vintage/garden theme. It was a fun theme to execute on a hot, sunny, summer day. Check out the inspiration board I created for this shower.  Gorgeous flowers, lots of lace, a perfect backyard venue, good food and drinks and a lot of fun guests and hosts brought this shower to life. Kristin has 9 bridesmaids and we all teamed up as co-hosts. A huge thanks to the bridesmaids plus my friend Libby for all help!

I am a huge fan of hanging decor.  It's so simple yet creates major impact.  Using different color ribbon, I hung bud vases from the side of the tent.

The bridal shower sign was a last minute project.  Using scrap wood, my husband's friend cut down the wood and sanded it.  We then stained it and I painted the letters.  I wanted the sign to look rustic and simple. I then suspended it with ribbon and tied some floral fabric to it. 
I found cute yellow floral fabric at JoAnn Fabrics and created bunting.  I took many shortcuts making this bunting.  There was no sewing involved (I don't own a sewing machine and though I may seem somewhat crafty, I have no idea how to sew).  Instead, I cut penants and then used fabric glue to adhere them to a pretty lace ribbon.  It was so simple and I loved the results. 

Materials needed: fabric, scissors, ribbon and fabric glue.
The fabric was just perfect and only about $15 for 2.5 yards.  I also used it as table runners on the drink and dessert tables.
The flowers were beyond gorgeous.  They were from one of the bridesmaids mom's house.  They really helped bring the "garden" vibe to the shower given the flowers were truly from a garden and we had tons and tons of them.  The flowers were placed in mason jars and then some were tied with lace ribbon.

About a week ago, I took some fun photos of Kristin (the bride-to-be) on her 30th birthday.  I used some vintage-looking frames and hung them from ribbon with the photos of Kristin.
A photo of the shower before everything was set up.  This 10x20 foot tent is quite possibly one of the best things I've ever purchased.  It cost $70 from Menards and I have used it over and over again.  It has come in handy to shade from sun on a hot day as well as provide shelter during rain. 
Another great purchase was this gorgous chandelier that has made an appearance a few times now (at my sister's Breakfast at Tiffany's shower and my blogoversary dessert table). It cost $99 from Home Depot.
We covered all the tables with lace tablecloth for a vintage feel.
We used a tea pot and some dainty tea cups/saucers as decor.  Delicate, simple and lovely.

The gorgeous bride-to-be.  She rocked a strapless floral dress and looked stunning.

Stay tuned for part 2 of the shower tomorrow for lots more photos and  details on the brunch cocktail table, the delicious menu and the cutest cupcakes with edible flowers. 

Friday, July 23, 2010

Real party: an adorable pink bunny party

This girly pink bunny party was sent to me by Mrs A in the Cove all the way from Sydney, Australia.  She threw this party for her daughter Indi's first birthday.  What a sweet way to celebrate!

I love the pretty dessert table with bunny cookies, cupcakes, a round cake with a bunny topper and lots more sweets.
Strawberry milk in cute bottles with a sweet pink drink flag.
These bunny cookies are almost too cute to eat.
I love these thank you favor boxes with matching bunny tags.

The cutest little birthday girl. 

Thanks so much to Leanne for sending this sweet party my way.  Be sure to check out her blog for lots of party inspiration!