October, and time to break out the bats again! Though the weather forecast calls for upper 90’s all next week, these past few days have been our first true taste of fall, with the slight chill in the air and beautiful Phoenix rain.
I spread out the bats a bit more this time around, since I have plans to add more black bats to the “cloud” this year, but I kind of like the simplicity of the colony I have now, so we’ll see :)
I’m still totally in love with this chalkboard pumpkin which was contributed for last year’s holiday card. Check out the past post here: Chalkboard pumpkin
It’s official. I’ve fallen in love with shimmery golden bats this year.
With my love for fun decor and affinity for elegance, I simply couldn’t help myself!
I was inspired by the many “bat walls” I’d seen on Pinterest this Halloween season, but I wanted something slightly more chic: a smatter of beauty added to the cuteness of bats – yes, I think they’re simply adorable.
So I hunted down some bat-making tutorials. I copied, pasted, flipped, rotated, printed, cut, traced, and repeated until I’d created my very own colony of gold and black bats.
I started by printing my edited bat page onto regular paper, and then copied it onto a thick piece of cardboard. This allowed me to save it for future bat creations. I then traced as many bats as I could onto 4 sheets of card stock and cut them out.
To achieve 4 sizes of bats (I’m sure you could as many sizes as you want) I just cut the smallest bat both inside the sharpie lines and outside.
Here is my PDF of the pattern: bat’s printable
Frightful Fact: a group of bats is called a Colony.
And here is the original link from Martha Stewart to print a half bat: Half Bat Print out
The second party to our weekend celebration featured the elegant Tiffany Blue theme and the fun Rising Bubbles theme.
Jessica, the owner of WeddingTreatsandMore, contributed this lovely cake pop creation! Blue chocolate-dipped doughnut holes, topped with roses and garnished with ribbons and jewels. She even sought out a mini-chandelier to complete the true “Breakfast at Tiffany’s” atmosphere.
The ombre blue backdrop and clear “Rising Bubbles” balloons are a feature of the PinkPoodlesofParis. A small tank* rented from a local shop filled about 100 balloons. I’m such a fan of balloons at a party–they’re a classic piece that makes a big impression.
We enjoyed the rare pleasure of an overcast sky and ushered in the first day of fall as we celebrated the joy of good friends and a great party.
If you haven’t already, be sure to take a peek at our “Bubbles and Tiffany’s” party post!
*The tank was about 50 cubic feet (that’s how they measure the helium). After calling around, I found the best price from a helium distributor as opposed to a party rental shop. They turned out to be the biggest distributor on this side of town, supplying helium for grocery stores, dollar stores, etc. I’m definitely going there again.
Cozette turned three this September, and three things this little girl absolutely loves include Bubbles, Blue and Sweets.
With that in mind I aimed to throw a party that was both fun & classy. Enter Bubbles & Tiffany’s!
Unfortunately a key package was delayed due to a slip up at the post office. This created a major setback in the aesthetic aspect of my party, as well as all my plans…
After a lot of stressing over the weekend, I finally came up with a wonderful solution: We split the party into two events! First we enjoyed a backyard Bubble Bash. Then two days later, once the missing items were finally delivered, we all relaxed with a Porch-Top Tiffany Soiree. Both were fabulous parties with double the fun. It just goes to show that even if your dream party appears to be evaporating before your eyes, the party is truly for the guests. Their simple presence, along with the infectious joy and laughter that comes with children running around and having fun, makes even the simplest party a fabulous celebration!
That said, I’m honored to be featuring the contributors for Cozette’s third birthday celebration that made the party such a success!
Gorgeous scripted “Happy Birthday Cozette” topper and Tiffany boxes were sent to us from ChiqueDesign. They added such an elegant touch to the party.
Since the party was a late brunch, I opted out of a traditional birthday dessert. Breakfast sweets and plentiful fruit made for a light yet satisfying meal.
We filled the little Tiffany Boxes with adorable tiaras and necklaces. Even after a long morning of chasing bubbles and sitting in sandboxes these little girls still looked classy and fabulous.
Sweets! Glassy blue lollipops made by SherrieCoreDesigns, beautiful to look at and tasty to eat!
Cosette can’t get enough of this sugary goodness ;)
VirtuousWomenShop provided bottles of homemade sweet aroma-filled bubble bath. Cozette’s love of bubbles began with her very first bubble bath. Ever since her party, she yells, “Blue bubbles!” every time she takes a bath!
Tiffany blue bubble wands by BiggerBetterBubbles1 included a secret recipe for these amazing giant bubbles! Check out their shop and help support 9-year-old Riley’s summer camp fund :)
Even the little ones gave it a shot. Like father, like son.
Thank goodness the Dads were there! They kept the kids entertained for hours with their slick bubble-making skills, while the Mamas and Little Ones relaxed in the shade and took it all in.
I finally did it! Saved up enough plastic square bottles to make kids’ cups for the party. I drilled a hole in the cap and collected enough blue straws to match. They were perfect, a real party favorite, and cost practically nothing.
The amazing, giant confetti-filled balloon, complete with a color-themed tassel, was sent to us by PinkPoodlesofParis, a shop stocked full of balloons, confetti and more. You’ll see more of her balloons in the Tiffany & Bubbles party post!
A delicious spread, complete with coffee, milk and a sparkling punch.
Don’t forget to check out the second half of this “Tiffany’s & Bubbles” birthday soiree!
In honor of my dear sister’s pregnancy I decided to “go all out” with a woodland-themed baby shower. The mossy forest floor full of richly-colored mushrooms and fungus was the inspiration. It may seem strange to some but she has such an appreciation for the unusual beauty of mushrooms. I say “all out” because it really was a phenomenal party and to some seemed over the top, but I’m just beginning to reach the level of perfection that I so admire in the artistic beauty I’ve seen other party planners create.
Greenery from Hobby Lobby. It’s three pieces total, I bought them in separate trips to get the discount, and rearranged the length to make sure they tiered proportionally. The one on the left is two vines wired together.I bought a replacement valve on Amazon for this jar and it is difficult to close, ugh, hence the note. We bought a jar of Chameleon Concentrated Coffee and included a pitcher of milk and a pitcher of flavored creamer. We like to mix it with 1/3 of the cup coffee, a splash of flavored creamer and the rest milk. It’s kind of like an chilled latte imo. Just enough protein and mixture of veggies, I learned early on to make sure there’s always a protein option at a baby shower, because there’s usually at least one hungry mama! For this shower we went with chicken salad sandwiches, and evidently they were delicious. In hindsight though, we should have provided double the chicken salad.We felt a little snazzy eating this gourmet cheese pinecone! My lovely assistant Aliyah created this masterpiece.
And my favorite… the desserts! Moss, mushrooms, and butterflies – Oh My!
Sugar Robot supplied us with a plethora of bright and realistic wafer butterflies. We sprinkled them throughout the dessert and dining tables.A fruit tower adds height and dimension, creating an element of awe and pizazz to any beautiful party. Delicate moss cookie. Green-colored sugar cookies, with a sprinkle of cookie crumbs on top. They look like pretty delicious moss if I don’t say so myself.Baskets of Eatable Cookie Dough, Coco powder-dusted Merengue Mushrooms and Candy Melts topped chocolate cupcakes. A nice variety and delicious spread. I took the opportunity to try my luck at string art. This first one, an inverted tree, took a bit of time but wrapping the string was actually quite relaxing. As you know, I love detail, so with tiny nails and wrapping string, yes I enjoyed it. Beautiful butterflies. The little boys in particular enjoyed eating the butterflies more than looking at them. A quirky mushroom shower wouldn’t be complete without a bit of Kombucha. We had three beautiful pitchers with fresh flavors.If you recall my own baby shower you can tell I particularly love serving caprese salad, its so classy!Party Prizes included baskets of fresh fruit…Bright green sweet potato vines…Delicious vegetables…
A variety of dried mushrooms…
And of course a most fitting jar of Komucha with a scoby. I love the gifts, and when they’re this adorable they don’t even need to be wrapped! They’re an artistic display in themselves. Petal and Twig Felt hand-sewed this adorable fox onesie. The crisp orange and subtle grey look fabulous against the bright green foliage.
Inspired by Petal & Twig’s fox onesie I also fashioned a little fox string art.In keeping with the mushroom theme Organic Quilt Company provided this adorable organic reversible bib and knotty hat set.
Wonderfully soft and lovely colors I fully anticipate the new arrival to be wearing these in no time.
Sure the shower is for a little boy but we couldn’t resist breaking out the flower crowns, we created these crowns for a flower crown mini shoot with some of my photographer friends. Additionally an array of dainty crowns had been provided by a local shop ShopBleuGardens she also creates fresh babies breath crowns which I absolutely love.Table settings, another one of my fascinations, though it does take a bit to safely store I particularly love using real glass dinner wear and fabulous cloth napkins, my next project will to be purchase my own linen from a fabric store and fray an entire collection of gorgeous napkins. A sprig of rosemary and twigs, spice up any party for this shower it was especially fitting. Scavenged branches from the latest monsoon we strung it to the ceiling, and fresh branches leaning in the corner freshened up the room and created a mood of foresty elegance The Rusted Nut, just look at that master piece!With a special note from the creator this delicate mushroom forest was a highlight for sure, we read this little note aloud while guests admired the work.
Got a little carried away with my Hand Made Wood Art, but for my newest nephew’s nursery, it was worth it.
I wanted to create a mobil that doubled as a chime, I spent a good several minutes in the accessories isle of Hobby Lobby clanking a handful of pieces together trying to find some that made the perfect chime, walking away with a decent selection but not quite satisfied, I just happened to hear someone jingling about in the chimes section! Didn’t even realize they had one… but rushed over to find the perfect piece. Repurposing it with a few additions of my own I’m quite satisfied with the outcome. The terrarium table. As party favors we created an entire table worth of DIY Moss Terrarium kits. Guests were given basic instructions and allowed to try their creative touch at creating their own mini terrarium with real live moss foraged by Teresa all the way from Arkansa! A full tutorial can be found here in our latest blog DIY Moss TerrariumDelicate Mood and Carpet moss was sent to us from teresab123 in addition to their delicate greenery and wild nature, they had such a fresh soil smell, reminding me of the beautiful forest, ah.
It was a wonderful woodland baby shower, full of gorgeous green moss and deep brown wood, with delicious food and games which filled the room with laughter. It was most certainly a fabulous time and a beautiful event, till next time, good day & good night.
As an extra-special party favor for our Woodland-themed baby shower, (post coming soon!) we provided supplies for each guest to create their own little moss terrarium.
After scouring Pinterest for all of the best information on how to create and care for a moss terrarium, I decided to put together my own DIY to share with you all of my findings.
So here goes!
1: Clear glass container, with or without a lid. We visited Goodwill on their 50% off day and loaded up on adorable jars and glasses for as little as $.50 each!
2: Pebbles. The sizes can vary; it really depends on the size of the container and how you want it to look. It is preferable that your pebbles are clean so as not to introduce any unwanted elements (such as other plant life or bacteria that may grow mold)
3: Potting soil. I read that it should be potting soil, not gardening, so I took their word for it.
4: Activated charcoal or carbon. It’s the same thing often found in the aquarium care section, and helps purify the water to avoid mold.
5: Fresh live moss! We got ours from teresab123 on Etsy. She provides lots of supplies as well as ready-made terrariums.
6: Accessories. Look in the miniature section of craft stores or gather up your own natural elements. Try to find things that will withstand frequent watering.
Moss = teresab123
Start with a layer of pebbles. I like to be able to see them in the bottom of my glass so I used a generous amount. The height of the container will also determine how much you use so keep an eye on that.
Next sprinkle a layer of charcoal over the rocks. It doesn’t need to be thick, just a little bit over the entire surface area to filter the water.
Now add the soil. I patted it down to make enough room for my moss and accessories. Make it thick enough to allow roots to grow and let the dirt retain some water so that the moss stays damp. You don’t want the soil so thick that the water doesn’t eventually pass through to the pebbles. Soil that is constantly wet will encourage mold.
Although moss can grow tiny roots, it isn’t necessary to dig a spot for it in the soil; just lay the moss gently on top and press lightly so that the moss roots are touching the soil.
Mist the moss to start the dampening process and keep it alive. I’d suggest a gentle spray bottle since we don’t want standing water at the bottom. I think I’ll keep an eye out for a cute little copper mister to replace my re-purposed Windex one… :)
*Note, use filtered water, as tap water can burn the moss.
Then add your accessories!
Keep in a moderately lit area, not direct summer sunlight or windowsills as the bright sun (especially here in Phoenix) will most certainly burn the moss.
Mist lightly and frequently. Open terrariums need to be watered every couple of days as their water tends to evaporate quickly. Just keep an eye on the level of moisture, it should stay slightly moist but not so much so that water gathers at the bottom. If you notice this just lighten up on the amount of water you give it but don’t leave it completely.
Closed terrariums can go a week or two between waterings since they have created their own little ecosystem. If you notice too much condensation building on the sides of the glass remove the lid and let it dry out a little before sealing it again.
If mold does begin to grow, try using a bit of paper towel and a pick (like a skewer) to gently dab out the mold, so it won’t affect the rest of the moss.
Some of my favorite terrarium tutorials can be found on our Woodland Nature Baby Shower board on Pinterest.
My son is now one year old…crazy how fast time flies, and how a sweet little baby can grow into a spirited and happy boy. He has been such a pleasure to get to know over this past year, as I watch him interact with his papa, copy everything his big sister does and smother me with loving wrestles. He picks up on things quickly, so even though the inspiration for an aviator-themed birthday party was entirely my own, he didn’t hesitate in flying his new wooden airplane, bearing with me for a few seconds as we tried to snap a picture of his new sunglasses (while laughing with us in his little join-in-any-laughter way), and especially digging into his delicious slice of smash cake.
Guests were greeted at the door with a clothespin airplane and a snazzy new pair of sunglasses, personalized by StickyImages “affirmative” and “ready for take off.” Each little guest will carry these happy memories with them through the bright summer years. The long lasting detail on these glasses is amazing–we chose the shiny silver to contrast the black and were extremely pleased with the results. The glasses are also very sturdy and a great fit for a wide age range.
I’ve always loved the order and beauty in the somewhat chaotic art of watercolor. Perfectly captured in PDF form, Blixa6Studios provided us with an astounding array of colorful blue splats, shapes, lines, and swaths. With a bit of effort and a lot of patience, I unbound this adorable Kraft brag book I picked up on clearance at Hobby Lobby, then easily printed my creative choice of watercolor marks on the pages. Once I get the photos (that I requested guests take in front of the backdrop) printed I will add them to the book and continue to add to this personalized book at his next and future birthdays.
“Happy Birthday little chubby ballon.” Admittedly I’ve called him this a once or twice since reading these touching words from his eldest cousin.
Fabulous string art custom made by CraftedOnThePlains. I love to hear the excitement in other artists (even if it is only an email, I can hear the excitement in my head). When I presented her with the question of creating a biwinged airplane for this special party she excitedly obliged. I didn’t specify any more, leaving the creative genius to her, and this piece of art really blew me away when I received it in the mail. I couldn’t have asked for more perfect colors or detail!
That’s my boy! Dresden’s “favorite things” chalkboard detailed with skill by ADEprints. I, having terrible handwriting myself, am always awed and impressed by the immense skill of those who can create pieces such as this, hand painted and designed with care. I’ll treasure it forever.
Yummy and extremely practical (thanks to a good friend, sister, and nearby Costco), we fed the entire crowd with extra to send home with the helpers. Pizza, fruit, veggies and dip, pasta salad, chips and salsa, cheese and crackers, and pickles…because my kids like pickles.
Inspired by Pinterest, I wouldn’t let go of my vision for a watercolor backdrop, so unable to spend an arm and a leg for a custom print I experimented and created my own! Starting with a 6×9 canvas drop cloth from Home Depot (for only $11!), I then spent some time pacing the paint isle at Hobby Lobby. After much deliberation (I wanted to be able to water it down to create the “watercolor” affect, and it must be flexible with the material) and a tiny suggestion from the employee near by, I purchased a bottle of blue ink ($6). She had suggested using a spray bottle which I tried but didn’t love (it had too much of a “drop cloth” look instead of a “backdrop”). I rushed back to HD to try again, this time I used a ramekins to slowly water down the ink a few droppers at a time. I went to work with a cheap paintbrush. Looking back at the inspiration (from Pinterest on my phone) from time to time, the paint’s abstract shape began to be revealed, and through some additional trial and error…voila!
Tips: if possible, try to save a little paint at the end. I thought I had it perfect, but after it dried and I brought it inside and hung it for inspection, I discovered some color inconsistencies I didn’t really like. Back to the front yard it went. I had to use a different color which I wouldn’t have preferred, but thankfully was content with the outcome.
Secondly, make sure the sprinklers are turned off…while rinsing out my ramekin and paintbrush, the garden hose water over sprayed ever so slightly onto the freshly “painted” cloth, leaving tiny little water spots. Uh-oh…I rushed over with my hose knob on mist and got the entire piece damp, and was able to smoothly ease out the spots. When the sprinklers when on that night I almost had a heart attack. Thankfully, I had washed my initial experiment piece, and I discovered that when fully soaked, the colors simply fade slightly. Once I realized that was what happened, I could breath again, sorry for kinda freaking out hubby.
BALLOON ARCH!! When you’re on Pinterest all the time, it can be funny to see what original photos inspire the creativity. A bright pink flamingo arch was the most beautiful I’d ever seen, and once I got into my head the thought of an “abstract balloon cloud,” I had to try it!
Already having a hundred pearly white balloons, I set out to look for some hints of blue, grey, silver and patterned balloons. Being sorely perturbed at the discovery that the Party City near my house had been closed, I popped into Hobby Lobby again, Target, and a couple different dollar stores (apparently most grocery stores don’t have any sort of a non-helium balloon variety available). I found the polka dot ones at Hobby Lobby, the white at Target and a variety of blues and grey at dollar stores. I wasn’t a fan of the dollar store balloons–they were thin, took on strange shapes as you inflated them and the colors were hardly true to the original expectation. Unable to find clear balloons anywhere I experimented with filling the white balloons with pale blue tissue paper confetti (too faint to show up through the white) and shimmery blue mylar paper which I loved! It truly static-ed to the balloon, unlike the tissue paper, and its vibrant nature was so unique.
(More tips and a DIY video to follow! For a one-stop tutorial on all I have learned about balloons through this experience, stay tuned!)
Now on to these important and really spectacular balloons. 5″ balloons provided by the Luft Balloon Store are double stuffed, and colors are custom created to match your vision. Elain was a delight to work with and such an inspiration, I sent her a few abstract watercolor images from Pinterest and she replied with perfectly-matched balloons from her shop! Their brilliant color and glossy sheen amazed me and the small size made them the important and final factor in making the balloon arch full and complete.
This gorgeous table cloth is pure linen made by LinenMe in Lithuania. The texture and beautiful natural color is absolutely perfect for any occasion! Machine washable and ironable–I’ll definitely be bringing this lovely piece with me to more parties, so keep an eye out for it in future posts!
“Let them eat cake!” I wanted to provide variety and versatility for dessert. In addition to a couple different flavors we included a gluten free cake to ensure all our guests could enjoy this joyous moment. A simple, powder sugar frosting and a covering of plastic wrap kept our cakes nice and moist for 24 hours, allowing us to bake the day before and save me a bit of pre-party stress.
A little wooden airplane, gifted by his awesome aunt, made the perfect cake topper. I used a large flat head screw driver to scrape the red trim from this simple 1 candle from Big Lots, (since a plain white candle is like impossible to find).
Happy girl in her new sunglasses…She’s gotten used to wearing them over this summer since, in her words, the sun is “hot” (she means bright)…But she didn’t seem to mind wearing them the entire evening indoors either. :)
Child-sized aviators provided by StashClothingxo are very reasonably priced and ridiculously adorable, stop in the shop and see for yourself! Such a little stud, he has no idea how seriously cute he is… but now I have these darling pictures to brag about with for a long time to come.
And adorable kiddos sporting their pairs. Absolutely Radical, the birthday boy showing off his aeroplane-themed aviator glasses, it doesn’t get much cuter than this… Ok maybe a cute cousin in addition with cool sunglasses makes it a tie. ;)
A play area especially for the kids. Naturally they didn’t all stay here for too long, but it was a fun constant to come back to and play at. The mini balloon cloud turned out to be a fantastic play piece for all, as they rallied together and tore most of it down, running around the house with a dozen balloons. Surprisingly (and thankfully!) not many popped. The Lufa balloons held up especially well.
I decided to create a “runway” for the little toy airplanes. With chalkboard paper from our last baby shower and Google images, it wasn’t too difficult to create a simple piece to inspire creative play. The highlight was the natural wooden blocks cut and created by vermontbranchcompany. They made this imagination area complete and drew the attention to a more focused and calmer state of play. Ah, truly a reprieve for the parents, I absolutely love Montessori style toys and these beautiful smooth blocks where a huge hit. Vermont branch company creates so much, from weddings and parties to home and office, such natural elegance and beauty.
Pre-birthday cake, he flew his new airplane around his head making a sort of small growling sound.
I realized I hadn’t taught Dresden to blow out candles, so his sister stepped in and did the honors.
Oh the glory of a smash cake…I opted for giving him just a slice of cake, but upon hearing his one and only word, “more,” I couldn’t help but treat him to a little more, followed by lots of fruit. He throughly enjoyed this moment.
Love the detail of his party? Then I’m sure you’ll love his sister Cozette’s first birthday Garden Party.
At the beginning of June we celebrated a lovely little girl’s first birthday in style. In an event inspired by summer peonies and ranunculi we created a whimsical and bright atmosphere to delight party guests of every age.
The celebration commenced on a bright summer morning. Oversized balloons danced above tables laden with savories and sweets; children ran giggling through towering lace tents while their parents mingled beneath a ceiling full of garlands. It was a grand time and the house was filled with family and friends all gathered to celebrate the birthday girl.
When guests first arrived they were greeted by a small table filled with handmade party hats. We added a bright ranunculus to the birthday girl’s to set it apart using a hot glue gun and silk flower. The kids each donned a hat and then moved on to grab a lunch box with kid-friendly foods inside. Because we intended to serve more refined foods at the party, we decided to offer familiar options for the kids in addition to the buffet. Our boxes were filled with PB&J’s, grapes, and animal crackers.
One key element in building a beautiful party is to create a few focal points, where the majority of decorations converge. For Charlotte’s floral first birthday we made the buffet table, the cake table, and the children’s play area the focal points.
The buffet table featured a variety of bruschetta boards filled with cheeses, fruit, roasted veggies, salamis, and spreads.
On the wall above the table a beautiful vine trailed down, sent to us by ForeverBloomsByLori. The leaves were the exact shade of green we were hoping for, and brought life to the table. We held the vine in place with Scotch Indoor Mounting Tape, which held up the heavy vine without peeling paint or leaving holes in the wall. I used an ample amount of floral wire and after cutting the ends off of a few, wired together a total of 6 branches into three large vines to create the arch
The sweet silhouette of Charlotte was contributed by prettiestSilhouettes and added an elegant touch to the table. Colorful floral print surrounding a delicate custom silhouette, and repurposed as the perfect addition to her bedroom’s photo wall.
Charlotte’s mama is a photographer, and has a 365 project of Charlotte in the works, so photographs of the birthday girl were an abundant feature of the party, and added the perfect backdrop to the cake table. We tacked twine vertically across the window and curtains and then taped the photographs up and down each strand.
In keeping with our floral theme, we wound strands of vine and plastic flowers around the balloon strings. Small vases of peonies and other summer flowers were scattered about the rooms, and fresh, edible flowers adorned even the cake! The naked vegan almond cake was adapted from this recipe. We simply baked four cakes (and a teeny one for Charlotte) and used true whip whipped cream to layer them. The mini bunting was created with scraps from the large bunting we hung above the children’s play area.
We created all of the garlands ourselves. The vine garland was simply strung together using plastic vine and floral wire. The string of tassels was made from scrap yarn, and the felt floral garland was created using this tutorial. The floral bunting was our favorite, and was born out of some creative ingenuity. We found the perfect pattern of flowers as a role of wrapping paper! We glued the wrong sides together using paper cement, traced triangles in the size we desired, cut them all out and then sewed them together with white all-purpose thread on a sewing machine. Swinging high above the play area, the abundance of garlands added a sweet and festive look to the room.
As we dreamt up this party, we knew that the kids would need somewhere to play indoors thanks to the scorching Arizona summer. We created the whimsical lace tents based off of this Pinterest pin. The tutorial called for wooden dowels to keep the frames together, but we would suggest purchasing knobs for a dresser or something similar to keep them from coming out of the frame. The teepee was created using a canvas painter’s tarp and cotton duck material, and was inspired by this tutorial.
The celebration was spectacular, and little Charlotte was showered with love on her special day. The party was fresh and beautiful – the perfect way to celebrate a lovely little girl. We thank all of our contributors for helping to make the event a success!