Saturday, March 31, 2012

{engagement party} + {sign the wine}

You guys. BIG NEWS.  

... are you ready for this?

My best friend in the whole wide world is getting MARRIED!!  I know, right?  This is going to be SO much fun!  She is marrying this amazing guy Luke, and my husband and I have been lucky enough to get really close with him over the past 2 years {i'm a bridesmaid and Brett is a groomsman - yay!}.  

So, first call of bridesmaid duty: plan a killer engagement party.  I wish I could say that I thought of all of these great ideas myself, but Hayley has three amazing sisters/MOH's that are equally {if not, more} talented in the party planning process.  Here is a little snapshot of the day:

Hayley loooves french macaroons, so we packaged them up in cute kraft paper bags with a "thank you" stamp and some baker's twine as party favors.  There were striped paper straws in abundance, and adorable mason jars with chalkboard tags. Hay's little sister Ryley made all of the cute fabric bunting, and her big sister Tanisha set up an awesome make-your-own mimosa bar!

Hayley's sister-in-law Mandy made the adorable cupcakes with heart-shaped strawberries with the tags; the mother of the bride decorated the candles with burlap and twine, as well.  Croquet, cornhole, and other lawn games were played {even though i shamed myself with my abominable beanbag-tossing skills}, and we all stuffed ourselves with food and sweets.  Oh, and with the help of my dad's home table saw skills, we made that chalkboard bunting sign {tutorial to follow}.

Last but not least, I'd love to give you a fun idea for a "guest book" - use this at pretty much any event, especially when the person of honor is an oenophile. I present to you... Sign the Wine!

Step 1:  Go to a wine outlet store {I went to Total Wine in Thousand Oaks}; you can either scour the aisles {like I did} or ask a helpful sales representative {like I did... after 2 solid hours in the store!} to help you find wines with labels that have to do with love, marriage, dating, etc.
Step 2: Put an "event" to go with each bottle label!  Each started with "open when..." Here were mine:
     "House Wine" - Open when... you unpack your last box in your new place!
     "Double Dog Dare" - Open when... you're feeling adventurous.
     "Happy Camper" - Open when... you take your first camping trip
     "Monogamy" - Open when... you've been married for one year!
     "Mad Housewife" - Open when... you need to make up :)
Get creative!  Think of things that remind you of the couple {for example, we always go on camping trips with Hayley's family, so I chose the Happy Camper wine} - even if you have to make it stretch a little, it adds to the fun :)
Step 3: Find metallic permanent markers that are safe to write on glass {and that, most importantly, are smudge-proof!}.  Have guests sign the wine as they mingle at the party!
Step 4: Give the signed wine bottles to the bride and groom {or the person of honor} to keep!

*hint: also would be fun for a baby shower (after the baby is born, of course!), birthday, or anniversary party!*


Saturday, January 21, 2012


I'll admit it.  Succulents used to remind me of my grandma (ok, and maybe anything old).  But watch out, people - old is the new... "new."  I'm really loving them right now, and they are very versatile.  Use them in your bouquets, boutonnières, tablescapes, favors, or ceremony decor for a very Sunset Magazine feel.

Sunday, January 15, 2012

wood you please?

Ok, I am luuurrrving this new trend of going "au naturel." 
Plus, you can find all the material you need in the great outdoors.
Take a hike [literally] and find awesome, free, and green wedding décor.
(or look on etsy, either way)

Thursday, January 5, 2012

chalk it up

The latest trend to hit the wedding scene these days takes a page out of an elementary school teacher's book: chalkboards.

I know, right?  Whimsical, youthful, adorable... and guess what. CHEAP.
Yah, yah, I know what you're thinking.  Chalkboard paint is NOT cheap.
...think again!

I present to you: DIY chalkboard paint (courtesy of the hostess herself, Martha Stewart)

Start with a flat-finish latex paint in any shade
1. Pour 1 cup of paint into a container.
2. Add 2 tablespoons of unsanded tile grout.
3. Mix with a paint stirrer, carefully breaking up clumps.
4. Apply paint with a roller or a sponge paintbrush to a primed or painted surface [work in small sections, going over the same spot several times to ensure full, even coverage]. Let dry.
5. Smooth area with 150-grit sandpaper, and wipe off dust.
To condition your chalkboard surface: rub the side of a piece of chalk over entire surface.  Wipe away reside with a barely damp sponge

You're welcome.

P.S. - check out the above pictures!  My favorite chalkboard craft (which makes a great favor) is the chalkboard paint on the foot of the wine glass.  They double (or...triple?) as a wine charm, a place card, and a gift! BONUS.

P.P.S. here is a photo of my lovely friends, who got married this October in Seattle!  I was so honored to be in their wedding, and they had some chalkboards featured in their photo booth.