Press Play and Party {St. Vincent . Cruel}

I am a music lover.  Certain songs prompt me to plan a party based on the mood the music gives me.  This party inspiration board is based on St. Vincent’s song ‘Cruel’.

02 Cruel  {Click the link to the left to hear song}

When I hear the song, I think of Disney princesses.  But in a grown up sort of way.  Why should little girls get all the fun? Wouldn’t it be cool to throw your friends a princess party? 
This party would be a mix of fancy and totally casual.  Of course the color pink would be the driving force throughout the party but other colors would be more than welcome.  Especially royal blue.  Oh NO you didn’t!

images: {clockwise starting from the top}

girls at dessert table . Graffiti Champagne . cupcakes and teapots . pink ropes . cotton candy . pink heart forks . balloons and champagne . head pieces . cake sparklers


How decadent do these perfume bottles look when styled as cake?  My friends would not hate going home with one of these as a party favor.

image:  perfume Of course there would be nods to the Disney classics throughout the decor.  Apples are a must {Snow White}.  And yes, I glittered an apple because I wasn’t happy with any of the images I could find online.  Crazy, party of one, your table is ready.

image:  Cupcakes and Cutlery

A glittery, mirrored garland would look perfect over a food table and some colorful wall art that a reminiscent of a spinning wheel would help bring the color {Sleeping Beauty}.


mirrored garland . hoop rug

But I am all about comfort.  So the dress code would be a mix of fabulous and chic with absolute comfort.  Absolutely no heels allowed!  Just about anything by Wildfox Couture or Haute Hippie would work.  And of course, can dress your head like nobody’s business.

outfit 1:  crown . dress

outfit 2:  stiped pants . bow headband . lace sweatshirt

outfit 3: pink and gold tiara . sequin blazer and leggings

outfit 4:  sweats and fur . black and gold headband

I am hoping to make this a recurring post category.  What songs make you want to party?


October Inspiration Board Challenge – Final Board

Remember this Mini and Maximus shirt?  Yup, it was the inspiration piece I sent to Taryn of Formal Fringe to create a mood board for.  
Taryn says:
I know this is a kid’s t-shirt, but I can’t help but imagine it being worn by a playful women on a milestone birthday, worn tucked in to a glimmering sequined skirt.  The glitter and glam carries into the whole fete through metallic details on escort cards, plates, envelopes and even in the drinks!  The decor of the room is neutral, weaving tones of gold, copper and silver with modern black and white.  It’s the perfect state to crown her the official V.P. of Fun for the night! 
Photo Sources:
Metallic china patterns, Martha Stewart Weddings
Netural Tassle Garland – CONFETTISYSTEM
Mojito with edible glitter – Fashionably Bombed
V.P. of Fun t-shirt – Mini & Maximus
Metallic Sequined Bell Skirt – J.Crew
Black and white lounge – Rue Mag
Golden feather envelopes – Furze Chan
Metallic graphic escort cards – Martha Stewart Weddings

Thank you so much, Taryn for putting this board together!  I love your idea of pairing the Tee with a gorgeous, shimmery skirt.  And those metallic stars in the drink are making me SO happy!  This would also make a rad New Year’s Eve theme.  I wish I had the energy to throw a blow out party for the last big holiday of the year.  

Can you believe it is November already!?!  Let the Christmas shopping commence!  I heard Christmas music while shopping at Michaels today and I didn’t hate it…

Serve Ciao Bella Sorbet at your next cocktail party!

You guys know that I had a makeover by Mom’s Fashion File, right? (said sarcastically and with a wink).  I’m not trying to rub it in to those that didn’t win, or brag about how fantastic I looked “after“.   It was an amazing opportunity on so many levels.  I met many beauty experts and successful professional bloggers but it really came down to the amazing group of sponsors they put together including those from their Secret Style Suite party.  The absolute highlight for me (and not just because it contained alcohol that I required before the fashion show) were the cocktails created using some of the Ciao Bella Sorbets.  (Remember I posted a brief snippet about them about a month ago?) Absolute cool fantasticness and you SO totally need to set up a bar at your next party. 
Ciao Bella uses all natural ingredients and delicious, bold flavors and is a favorite of my family.  I am dying to try the Peach Ginger Sorbet though, so if anyone in Orange County runs across it can you let me know! I look at every market I visit and have yet to find it! 
Follow Ciao Bella on Twitter and Facebook! 
Here are some recipes for you to try out.  You will not be disappointed!
{peach ginger margarita}
1/2 pint CIAO BELLA Peach Ginger Sorbet
1/2 pint CIAO BELLA Lemon Zest Sorbet
1/2 cup lime juice
1 cup tequila (white or golden)
1/4 cup Cointreau
Ice Cubes
Optional:  salt for the rim
Place all ingredients in a blender and pulse until smooth.  Pour into a margarita glass with a salted rim.  Add more ice as needed.
{wild blueberry lemon drop}  I heard RAVE reviews about this one
2 oz. citrus vodka
1 oz. Cointreau
2 oz. lemonade
CIAO BELLA Wild Blueberry Sorbet (very soft)
Optional:  sugar for the rim and CIAO BELLA Lemon Zest Sorbet
Combine all ingredients into a cocktail shaker with ice and shake vigorously.  Pour into a chilled martini glass with a sugared rim.  Garnish with a small scoop of Wild Blueberry or Lemon Zest Sorbet!
{blood orange sparkling sangria} This is the one I had…PERFECTION!

One bottle sparkling wine (can use white or rose)
1/2 cup Cointreau
1 pint fresh raspberries
1 pint strawberries (cleaned and cut in to small pieces)
CIAO BELLA Blood Orange, CIAO BELLA Prickly Pear Sorbet or CIAO BELLA Peach Ginger Sorbet (all good options)
Pour wine and Cointreau into a pitcher.  Delicately add fruit and ice.  Pour into glasses and garnish with CIAO BELLA sorbets.  
{pickly pear bellini}

Sparkling wine (prosecco, cava or champagne)
CIAO BELLA Prickly Pear Sorbet
Optional:  fresh fruit for garnish, CIAO BELLA Blood Orange Sorbet or CIAO BELLA Raspberry Sorbet
Pour the sparkling wine into a champagne flute leaving plenty of room at the top.  Slowly add a small scoop of the Prickly Pear sorbet to the glass.  Be mindful as it will likely foam up over the rim of the glass.  Cheers!  
Go try it.  Now.  
Top 2 photos by Amy Winkelmann for Cupcakes and Cutlery
Bottom 2 photos by Bella Diva Photo (see more shots of the Ciao Bella Table from the party here)

A Stella and Dot Playdate! Do it!

By now I am sure that most of you have heard of Stella and Dot.  For those who have not, it is similar to Avon in that you buy from a representative and host in home parties but that is where the similarities end.  Stella and Dot is really cool jewelry made for the modern woman and mom who wants to remain fashionable.  Amy and I leave for Blogher in 3 days, and thought we should start figuring out our wardrobes.  Amy suggested we see about getting styled by her friend, Heather, who is a Stella and Dot stylist.  Um, done.  So we turned it in to a playdate.  Heather brought her adorable little girls and make your own pizzas for the kid’s lunches.  Amy hosted us at her house and I brought my little ones.  

For the adults, Heather brought this delicious roasted shrimp and veggie orzo salad.  YUM!  But then it was time to get down to business: get us pretty for our first major blogging conference. 

With the kiddos busy eating out on the patio, Heather took over the dining table and set up shop.  You would not believe how fast this all came out.  She’s a finely tuned machine.  It was great to be able to see the pieces and pick them up and really get to know the jewelry.  I was surprised by the quality.  Cartier it is not, but WAY higher than H&M.  They have a few different niches that they design pieces for, which means there is something for everyone.  They have really nice delicate stuff as well as totally on trend items.  I tried on my outfits and we fiddled around with what we felt worked best.  

Here we dressed up my $10 H&M dress with a great layered coin necklace and arm candy.  My wardrobe schedule is pretty well set now.  The stress is off.  Not only did Heather help me decide on the jewelry, but gave me suggestions on shoes as well.  She is awesome you guys! 

Amy tried on her outfits as well and Heather added the finishing touches.  Heather is local to Orange County and you should totally book a party.  Heather and I used to take sewing class together and she’s ridiculously Martha Stewarty.  She can help you turn a ho hum jewelry party in to a really fun Girl’s Night Out.  Or do a playdate like we did and keep her all to yourself (or a select few friends).  Totally fun.  Just add lemonade.  
Not local?  You can buy pieces right on line here.  
And be sure to “like” Heather’s stylist page right here.
I want to thank Heather for loaning me these pieces for Blogher.  I’m super excited to show off these great accessories.  And word on the street is they have hand bags coming out at the end of the month!  I can’t wait to check those out! 
All photos are mine. 

Party Decor ideas – pretty, printable and pink

So you want to host a party to raise money for breast cancer but you don’t know where to start.  If you are not a party lover, like myself (and my regular readers) you don’t have to get crazy.  Let the food and friends be the main focus and keep decor to a minimum.  If you have more time and want to jazz up your party space, you can add on some of the other ideas to make the atmosphere more fun. 
via TomKat Studio
These free printables from TomKat Studio would make a party extra special even if you didn’t do any other decorating.  Use a punch to cut out some of these patterns and create very quick cupcake picks.  Print some square on cardstock and cut them out for coasters.  String them together for a super quick garland.  You can use them as a place card, name tag, really – what couldn’t you use them for.  
image via Hey Love Designs
Here is another great set of modern party printables with the pink ribbon theme.  
But you don’t need to keep to the pink ribbon symbol to throw a great party!  HP has a great Pamper Party Kit complete with invitation, decor and more.  Maybe not the right look for a co-ed party, but certainly perfect for a Girl’s Night In or Dessert Buffet. 
image via Martha Stewart
If you find you have a little more time and want to take your get together to the next level, you can create your own banners with uplifting words and use that as the basis of your party decor.  Martha’s printables (yes, we’re on a first name basis.  She should just be glad I don’t shorten it to Ma…that could get creepy) include all the letters of the alphabet and some punctuation.  Just choose the color(s) paper you want your letters to be and you are halfway to finishing your banner.  
image via Bambina Babe
Paper poms are all over the blogosphere and there is a reason…they are freaking cute!  They are very inexpensive to create but they make a big impact due to their size.  They are very easy to make and are pretty forgiving if you don’t think of yourself as an expert crafter.  I just made my first one a few months ago and immediately had to talk myself out of hanging them all over our house.  
Pink Plastic Streamers (made with plastic tablecovers) by ME! (shameless plug)
Another inexpensive decor idea is these plastic streamers.  I came up with these a few months ago and think they are super fun.  Again, for not a lot of money, you can come up with a ton of streamers to use around your party.  Depending on how many you want, they can be fairly time consuming so it is the perfect activity for you to do as you are catching up on your Real Housewives of New Jersey (Grrrrrlllll, don’t even front, I know you watch it).  

Getting a little more complicated and costly is this ribbon garland, but I include it because, well, look at it.  It’s stunning.  It doesn’t require any special tools and the idea is simple, tie ribbon on a stick.  It can easily be modified to fit a number of different decor needs.  Tie them to a round embroidery hoop and you’ve got the fastest chandelier in the west (especially if you choose a mini hoop – not the crazy big ones).  Tie these on the a suspension rod and pop into a door frame for a quick photo backdrop (in which case might I suggest you not use ribbon so that you still have money in your wallet for party food).  I might even suggest plastic table clothes cut in to strips in various shades of pink (ruffled or not ruffled).  In photos it would be very hard to tell the difference in materials and much more cost effective. 
Here is a sneak peak from a party I just hosted last weekend.  Strung ribbon as garlands, no sewing, no nothing!  It looked super cute and couldn’t have been easier.  Also, these paper medallions that you are seeing everywhere are the perfect way to add pizazz to your party.  You only need a few and they are very quick to make.  See tutorial here
I hope this has helped you to see that there are tons of easy ideas that you can use to put together a quick get together for a good cause. 
Have you entered GEORGENE VEHE’S SWEETS FOR THE TEATS CONTEST yet for your chance to win a pink KitchenAid hand mixer sponsored by Del Webb?   Go now! 

Pink parties are the coolest

Anyone out there sign up to host a dinner party through 1,000 Cooks for the Cure?  Did you know that it doesn’t HAVE to be a dinner party?  Why not make it a fun girl’s night out and do a dessert potluck with rose champagne.  The images above are from a styled shoot/tiny party Lauren and I hosted in December for New Year’s Eve (how gorgeous are these images by Up Imagery!?!).  But I think it could be used throughout the year as well.  All these treats were provided by Kristin of Meringue Bake Shop for the shoot but her ideas are totally (for some – I am not one of those people) easy to DIY.  If a professional baker is not an option, I probably would buy store bought items and then jazz them up to make them cuter.  You can’t go wrong with pink rock candy, pink tinted white chocolate “suckers”, or a 3 layered strawberry shortcake cake.  Keep checking back for more recipes and entertaining ideas.  
Have you entered the contest yet? 
All images by Up Imagery
All treats by Meringue Bakeshop
Styling by Myself and Lauren of A Fabulous Fete