{Real Parties} Pink Polka Dots

 This Polka dot and Posies Birthday Party was originally hosted by Heather at Party in Pink.  You can the entire party and details at  her original post.
I don't know where to begin - this is just pinkalicious!  Avery's birthday party is certainly pretty in pink.  Pink flowers and tissue poms, M&M's, napkin and cup rings, balloons, party hats, and a matching outfit too!  Heather, you did a beautiful job (and I love Avery's playhouse too!).  Enjoy the party everyone, post a comment, and head over to Heather's blog!

Saturday was Avery's 3rd Birthday party. I love planning parties. Love it. But I don't have many occasions for it, so when I get the chance to plan one, I tend to go all out. I realize she likely won't remember them, and that she doesn't care about the details the way I do, but I enjoy it. And really, though there are lots of details, it's more of an investment in time than money. Nearly everything is papercrafted, and paper is cheap, especially when you shop sales, as I do.

Avery is very into pink, and decided back in June that she wanted pink polka dots and flowers for her party. Those two things didn't immediately make sense to me as a theme, so I figured out a cute name--polka dots and posies--and I was able to begin visualizing it. That name was nowhere in any party things; it was just for me.

And here's a close up of those paper bag flowers I made..

And another showing some of the table set-up. The party was at 1pm, so we had picky food as opposed to a full lunch. There was chips and salsa (round tortilla chips, of course), a veggie tray with round Ritz crackers and cheese that I cut into circles with a small coookie cutter, those yummy Lofthouse cookies with mounds of pink icing, strawberries with chocolate and cream cheese dip, chicken nuggets for the kids, pink M&Ms, cake and ice cream. Oh, and chocoolate dipped strawberry marshmallows on lollipop sticks. Yummy!
I searched everywhere for those clear pillow boxes. i really wanted the M&Ms to show through. They're the polka dots!
I made the tags with my Cricut, of course, and my new Mini Monogram cartridge. And there's more of those flowers!

The kids got goody bags made from Wilton popcorn boxes. Inside was a round lipgloss, a notepad, pink pencil, one of the M&M boxes and some flower tatoos. The boys got a light up toy, and boyish pencil and stickers.

I love the way these hats turned out! Avery's special one is in the front, the others had the single flower. I made 11-onch circles, cut them in half, and then rolled into a hat. I made the ribbon loops, taped them together, and taped them inside. You can't see it in the picture, but I placed a small brad in the hole where the elastic goes in. This helps keep the elastic from coming out or the knot from tearing through the hole.

Rather than buy fancy tableware, I bought clear cups and forks and dressed them up with paper. I think there's some formula you can use to make the angles work on the cup wrappers, but I just used a Starbucks cardboard thing as a pattern. And did you catch the picture of the napkins and the hats? Since when does my camera take such fabulous pictures?
The flowers are gumpaste, quilled ala Collette Peters. I should have let the buttercream set up a bit before placing the flowers, because they caused it to fall some.



{Party Planner Thursdays} Futuristic Robots

I'm helping a friend of mine create a robot themed birthday party for her soon-to-be 4 year old.  This is such a fun theme and you can really get creative with decorations, food names, games and activities.  I wish  I had a picture of a 5 foot robot I built back in 6th grade for a class project.  My mom had to drive me to school and since the robot was so tall we had to hang him out the sunroof of the car! 

Decorating for this party is lots of fun!  Use aluminum foil as table runners and scatter nuts, bolts, and washers on the tables (for the younger crowd you can use kids' plastic ones found in their tool boxes - see my invitation picture above; I borrowed Luca's toys for the photo shoot!).  Slinkies and coil tubing found at the hardware store would be great too!  

Go to your local auto body shop and pick up oil funnels and gas cans.  Serve beverages out of the gas cans (cleaned, of course!) and make up fun names like Out of this World Punch and Robotic Fuel.  In lieu of traditional paper hats, give earch child an oil funnel as their hat.  You can create fun robotic costumes for your guests with cardboard boxes, silver spray paint, paper plates and cardstock.  Or, you could create the basic robot structure and allow each guest to decorate their own!

Use a projector, posterboard and paint to create giant robots, cogs, and gears.  Afifix them to walls and  hang from the ceiling or chandeliers.

Place Chex Mix in a bowl or individual baggies and label them nuts & bolts.  Cheez-its or SunChips can be called computer chips.

An empty metal paint, found at hardware stores, can hold favors such as a robot finger puppet or lollipop and other goodies.  

If your party will be outside, consider making large yard props of cogs and gears from styrofoam, wood, or foam board.  Scatter them throughout the yard and call it the 'Junk Yard'


{New Lines} Available Now!

I just finished listing items for 4 new lines that I have created.  They are now for sale at Belleza e Luce.

Baby Boy Blue

Cotton Candy Pink Stripe

Fancy Nancy

Cake Chic

Additional items including thank you cards, door signs, banners, and cake toppers will be added soon.  AND an additional 5 lines will be making their debut in the near future!  What themes you ask?  I'll give you a hint for one ... you won't want to be late to the party!

Visit my shop.

{Real Parties} Gender Reveal Party

This gender reveal party was originally hosted by Brittany at Grey Grey Designs.  Thank you Brittany for sharing your party with us!
I love this idea!  When I was pregnant with my daughter I was firm that I did not want to know what I was having.  I wanted it to be a surprise.  Well ... at one of my ultrasounds, she was being uncooperative moving all around and I was able to figure it myself.  From that second forward, all my thoughts were pink and out went the bee-themed nursery I had been planning.

Brittany did a great job with this party and with only 2 weeks to plan it.  All the bee details are just bee-utiful!  Okay, I know ... but I had to do it!  I would love to throw this kind of party!  Enjoy everyone, post a comment, and then head over to Brittany's blog!

This weekend, I did my very first gender reveal party for some of our dearest friends, Tommy and Lauren. Gender reveal parties are the new trend in baby parties, so I couldn't wait to get a jumpstart on this one. I had been tossing ideas around with them for a few months, but I actually planned this party in about 2 weeks, since we weren't positive when the actual ultrasound appointment would be.
Obviously, I thought that yellow would be a perfect color for the theme, but then I came up with the idea of making it bumblebees, and calling it "What's It Gonna Bee?" I handpainted that sign on butcher paper, which is one of my favorite "big impact" ideas for a party tablescape. It really puts the focus on the theme of the party.
I decided on a candy/dessert buffet, since this was an afternoon event. Plus, then we could do a really fun theme colored display of foods. Some of the foods that I used were licorice, black and yellow jellybeans, moon pies, oreos in yellow and black, black raspberry now-n-laters, custom wrapped hershey miniatures, cupcakes, and bee pops.
I also did Martha Stewart's tissue flowers over the table for big impact. It's hard to tell in these pictures, but there were actually two large ones and two small ones. The fabric for the table is from JoAnn, which we only recently got in Memphis, and it is LOVE. SO much better than Hancock. I wanted something modern and graphic and I thought it was perfect!
I lucked out big time on these bee pops. I sent my husband out to Wayne's Wholesale Candy company one day on a mission for yellow and black candy and he calls me and says..."you're never going to believe this, but they have bee pops!" I said..."snatch them up NOW!" This is simply a piece of styrofoam covered in scrapbook paper.
All the tags for the food items are also made from scrapbook paper. For the "reveal" part of the party, I decided to have them cut into a cake and the inside would be blue or pink. This was the first time I have ever attempted to tackle fondant for a cake, and  I wasn't thrilled with the results, but it turned out cute. I also did little stripes of black on some of the cupcakes to inject a little contrast. The top cake is supposed to be a beehive cupcake, if you can't tell from the picture.
The small bumblebee votives and napkins are from Hobby Lobby. They have a ton of cute bee stuff right now!
The moment of truth....
It's a BOY!!!!

Hey Tommy, how do you really feel?

A totally fun party for two awesome friends!  We can't wait for him to BEE here!


{Real Parties} Look whooo's 2!

Aurora at Pierson Nest originally hosted this wonderful Owl Party.  Thank you so much Aurora for sharing with us!
Aurora decorated beautifully - I love the hanging tissue poms and the color palette is gorgeous!

Avery's 2nd Birthday party was on Saturday
and it was a HOOT!!! invitations from Polka Dot Design
you can see more of Avery's birthday outfit here
the decor was pink & orange

owl PB&J
crossaint sandwiches
veggies & ranch dip
cheese & crackers
fruit kabobs
{I used this tutorial to make the owl kabob sticks}

and of course, cupcakes!!!

I also made custom water bottle labels
{tutorial coming soon!}
eating with the girls
Avery, Kaya & Ellie

Janner enjoying his food solo

Avery LOVED having Happy Birthday sung to her
and blew her candle out on the first try!

a simple beanbag toss game for the little ones

ALL the kiddos
Kaya, Hudson, Janner, Avery, Noah, Ellie & Griffin

Kaya, Janner & Avery trying out her new chair

cute polka dot bags from Target,
mini stuffed animal owls,
owl paper and colored pencils,
personalized beanbags.


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{Real Parties} All Star Soccer Mania!

 Emily at Toad's Treasures originally hosted this Soccer Team Party.

Growing up I played on a few sports teams - basketball, baseball, and softball - before ultimately finding my sport: swimming.  One thing I loved about playing on the teams was making friends in other grades, and of course the 'Year End Team Party!'  Our parties were not very elaborate, usually a slice of pizza or ice cream but we loved it.

A great improv by Emily due to rain to kick the soccer ball pinata to break it open.  Afterall, it is a soccer party!  Enjoy the party, leave a comment, and then go visit Emily's blog!

Ready, Set, Throw! How about a fun team party? Here are a few ideas for a "sports team" party!

{Ethan's soccer team party: Simple & Fun}

{The Spread}
The menu: Grilled hot dogs, fruit kabobs, string cheese, chips, water bottles with our team name on them, cookies on a stick and soccer cupcakes for dessert!

{The invites}

{Party Cookies}
I just made sugar cookies and baked them on a popsicle stick, wrapped them up, & put stickers on the outside. For more picts and the recipe I used click here.

What kids doesn't love a pinata?! We had a soccer ball pinata which was not only a great decoration, but the kids LOVED it. We decided (on account of rain outside) that we would just have the kids actually KICK the ball around until the candy came out. They LOVED it & so did we! We had them each take turns kick it to eachother and then into the wall to open it up.

{Party Bags}
Just brown paper bags! Totally easy, but cute. I attached a balloon to each bag & it was a hit. I printed out the soccer balls & stars on sheets of "label" paper, cut them out, and tah dah!

{Thanks for a great season Super Kickers!}
It was so great "coaching" these sweet little guys this season. Stay tuned! I'll post more about our season soon!

Thank you for sharing your party with us!