1. San Francisco may not get the warmest summer weather, but that didn’t stop SFGirlByBay from hosting an awesome indoor picnic!
2. The House That Lars Built shows that flowers don’t always make the prettiest boutonnieres.
3. I love all the creative drink stick ideas from A Beautiful Mess.
4. Design*Sponge is making party decorations from things they already own.
5. The cutest way to ask a friend to be your bridesmaid (via Ruffled.)
Beautiful parties don’t always require a lot of energy. Most of the time, I can whip up something special within a couple hours – thanks to the supplies I always keep stocked in my party closet. For this party we pulled out of my stash: some crepe paper folds, my roll of white butcher paper, treat bags, striped napkins, and some tall candles. The giant fringe number makes a big impact and is perfect for kids. It took 1-2 hours to make but once it was completed, everything else came together quickly. (See the complete DIY here.) We crafted the tablecloth by painting loose yellow stripes onto white butcher paper and cutting scallops around the edges. After that, it just took a quick run to the party store and bakery to fill my balloons with helium, purchase favors for the gift bags, and pick up a yellow cake. Voila! A simple and easy party.
The idea behind this column is you can keep a basic amount of party supplies in your closet and create several different parties with just a little bit of preparation. For this party we pulled: rainbow streamers, striped straws, tall candles, confetti, and patterned napkins from my party closet (see the whole closet here.) I picked up the cake from a bakery and the whole thing was put together in about an hour.
Sometimes I like to spend a lot of time preparing for a party but most of the time I just put everything together last minute. I have this theory that that you can throw a really great party with the just the following:
-Keep a nice stock of items in your party supply closet
-1 hour of errands
-1 hour of crafting
When I run errands I usually pick up a cake or make a quick stop to a party store. In addition I like to spend an hour making something so the party feels special whether it is tiny hats for party animals, fringey garland, or homemade party hats. But the key to pulling out a great party last minute is keeping a well stocked party closet. When you keep a few of these party supplies on hand it is easy to pull a great party together at the last minute. I’ve been wanting to do some posts like this where I show some of the most-used items in my closet and how to pull them together for different events. We will be sharing some party ideas this week but first I wanted to talk about some of the things I keep on hand in my party closet.
1. Candles. I choose candles based on the cake size and style and who is blowing them out. These number candles are great for small cakes or if you are celebrating a large number and you don’t want to go all out. I love these tall graceful candles for classic birthday cakes. They come in really good colors. I always keep these “Happy Birthday” Candles for a quick and festive cake topper.
2. Paper. I really like to keep some raw materials around like white butcher party and folds of crepe paper. The crepe paper I use for everything: dot garlands, giant fringe, fringe garlands, and flower party blowers. If you read this blog then you know it is my medium of choice because you can do so much with it. The paper is great for backdrops or making giant signs or making homemade wrapping paper. It is a good thing to keep around.
3. Confetti. I really love this confetti from Party City, it comes in great colors. The giant confetti I got in France couldn’t find a good source. And party poppers are the best for when there is a special moment like an announcement or New Years Eve, etc.
4. Napkins. I get napkins from pretty much everywhere: Ikea, Target, etc. But I swear when I need them, they never have good ones. So I always pick up the good ones when I see them.
5. Balloons. A bunch of balloons whether they are helium or just hanging out on the floor, it is the easiest way to make a room feel festive. I usually keep a few bags of basic balloons and a few of the giant balloons.
6. Treat Bags. I use these little bags to print on and to package food or toys for favors. I like the selection over here.
7. Straws and Picks. I love a good striped paper straw and I use these wooden skewers all the time, for cupcake toppers, drink stirrers, and for food presentation.
8. Decorations. These decorations are the easiest way to add color in a just a minute or two. They are inexpensive and look great in masses. Pearl River Mart is a great source for garlands.
When I saw the new Avery and Martha Stewart collaboration (it’s pretty much perfect) my first reaction was “FINALLY!” I remember looking around over five years ago for good basic organizational office supplies. There is definitely lots of “pretty” stuff out there but it is usually expensive and has too many polka dots. I wanted things that were priced the same as regular office supplies with clean and classic details. I even started my own label company (RIP Stuck Labels) because I couldn’t find what I was looking for. Avery is really good with new technologies so it’s a nice marriage of taste and technology. I will definitely be using the labels for parties and weddings. The line will be available at Staples stores in February but it looks like you can buy it online right now. What do you think? Do you like it?