Nov 24, 2014

It's a Tiniciti Thanksgiving Feast!

Last week I had the great honor of planning a Thanksgiving Feast event for the parents and staff of Tiniciti preschool! This was the first professional event I plan and it was the best learning experience I could have asked for. I had a great time creating a theme around Thanksgiving and the children, sourcing props, finding vendors and designing graphics that tied it all together! Here are a few snippets of the event shot by Nicky Negrin Portraits.

THEME & GRAPHICS
Although Thanksgiving is usually a formal event, this was a little different because it was a luncheon and it’s for kids! We expected about 50 children between the ages of 3 months to 4 years old and I knew the focus had to be set on keeping them entertained. Throughout all the designs—from the invitation to the banner—the turkey had personality. The idea was to remind guests with every flyer, e-blast, etc. to catch that turkey! He poked out of every graphic and at the end of the event, the actual turkey showed up and was “caught!” The preschool uses polka dots in their branding so I included them in Fall colors, as well as branded children graphics where I added a Thanksgiving touch.


DÉCOR
Using all the designs described above, I also wanted to add a fun, kid-friendly tone in the signage. The tables included centerpieces with funny jokes and rhymes on them, photo-confetti I made from the kids’ Facebook photos, and props for a themed Thanksgiving sit-down feast! There was also a Photo Opp area with a teepee and a basket of props, and the buffet table had cornucopias and pumpkin décor with a branded backdrop banner to tie it all together.


LOCATION & CATERING
I accidentally came across this restaurant/event space when searching for another event and I fell in love with it! Salt Waterfront Restaurant is a little hidden gem located at the UM Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science, and overlooks beautiful Biscayne Bay. The owner was extremely accommodating with my requests to give the traditional lunch menu a Thanksgiving twist! He put together a delicious menu that included turkey, cranberry & stuffing sandwiches, baked ham & cheese sandwiches, corn bread, mashed potato salad, and more!


ENTERTAINMENT
I have to have at least one crafting station at every party! The kids got to build their own character balloon for a Thanksgiving Day Parade! They chose a balloon and attached pieces from labeled buckets to create a Turkey, Pilgrim and Native American (or a jumbled combination of the three)! At the end of the event the giant Turkey character surprised the kids and led the parade through the restaurant. We also brought in a Pilgrim for face painting, balloon making, playing games and putting on a magic show!


I couldn’t do any of this without the help of my husband, sister, sisters in law, and best friends—it was a family affair! It was all worth it to see the kids, parents and school staff have a great time.

Nov 3, 2014

Man Cave Makeover

Calling all males who Mind My Beeswax!!! (crickets) Guys, are you there? Anyone? Ok, well this is just as interesting for the girls too, I promise!

Man Crates, the super-cool and unique gifts for men company, reached out to me to put together the perfect Man Cave. I have no problem on the home décor subject, but man-stuff is a little out of my comfort zone so I surveyed my hubby and best guy buds for ideas. Of course, their wish list included nothing décor-related: a pool table, giant flat screen TV, PS4, Xbox One, surround sound system, and a beer keg. The closest answer I got to décor was a neon beer sign, and let’s face it, that’s so predictable.

Survey Says: Guys need a little help in this area.  I am all for making the Man Cave a special place for guys to be guys. It doesn’t need to be perfectly coordinated (that’s what the Girl Cave is for anyway) so I found items that can easily be thrown into a pretty predictable Man Cave room and are guaranteed to be guy-approved!

  1. Auto Timing Gear and Chains Wall Clock: A socially acceptable way to hang car parts on a wall! Loving the industrial look and feel this gives. 
  2. Home Plate Doormat: Is this not a baseball fan’s dream way to come home!? So clever, so cute, and it has a vintage feel. I’m sold. 
  3. Beer Chandelier: Chandeliers have no place in a Man Cave unless the sparkly crystals are replaced with glass beer bottles! This chandy has an industrial feel and is made with pre-prohibition beer bottles!
  4. Dog Blueprint Wall Art: This is a nice dedication to the other daily-lounger in the Man Cave, man’s best friend!  
  5. Movie Sofa: The name says it all! It's the perfect balance between something nice to plant his tush on for watching games and movies, and still having style. 
  6. Cement Block Coffee Table: There's pretty much no way to ruin this table. They can plop their feet on it, wipe off the potato chips, and it will still look pretty cool.

And I can’t mention Man Crates without showing you what it’s all about! I am pretty obsessed with personalized gifting. Don’t tell anyone but I actually have a secret board on Pinterest dedicated to all those unique gift items that I would love to find the perfect recipient for one day. So when I saw what Man Crates was all about, you better believe I pinned a bunch of their gifts! You choose a themed assortment of pretty cool gifts geared toward man-stuff, and it’s shipped to them in a wooden crate with a crowbar! Such a cool concept that I think all guys would love to receive! Here are some of my favorites that I think would be awesome gifts for a few guys I know!





Oct 14, 2014

A Baptism for our Lil Angel


Olivia's important milestone celebrations came back-to-back! With her baptism being scheduled just 3 weeks before her 1st birthday party, I had lots of coordinating to do in order to play both off well. Luckily, there wasn't too much to prepare for the baptism. After the ceremony, we headed to a nice little restaurant where lunch was taken care of, so all I had to bring were the essentials:

Tissue Paper Flowers
I fell in love with the flowers in this photo and wanted nothing more than to re-create them in peach, rose, and gold to display at the restaurant somehow. I worked on these for about 2 weeks and thought they were beautiful enough to design a whole theme around them. I loved them so much that they were also used as props for her 1st birthday photoshoot, and I think I'll find a way to display them in her room as well! I'm also working on these for the Etsy shop so I'll be back with an update soon!

Invitation
I designed the invitation with the same look and feel of the paper flowers in mind. The invites were printed on a metallic pearlescent cardstock so it really made the gold printing really shimmer. Check them out here!

Photo Cards
Keepsake favor cards were also designed with the same floral motif. This is the backside--the front featured the cute photo of Olivia above.
Here's a trick to get your baby to look like she's praying for a baptism picture: Give her/him a blade of grass to play with and you've got the money shot!

Cake
Another beauty by Thelma's Cakes! She created this cake using the same colors of the tissue paper. This cake deserves to be pinned and repined over and over again—so get to it! :)


Centerpieces
I swear these were thrown together at the last minute. I just ordered cabaret roses in a pinky coral, cut them short, and bunched them together with baby’s breath in a fishbowl glass vase. Easy peasy. Also looks great next to a yummy glass of sangria :)

And last but not least…

A Beautiful Headband
Olivia looked so pretty in her hairpiece by Abelialane featured in the photo above. It’s made with silk and chiffon white flowers, sparkly rhinestones, pearls and a rhinestone cross. It was the perfect match to her simple silk baptism dress. Here's a close-up!

Abelialane has the most beautiful headbands at such great prices. I’m definitely checking back again soon for more headbands for the holidays.

Teddy Bears' Picnic Party is Famous!

Catch My Party

I'm so excited that Olivia's Teddy Bears' Picnic Party was featured on Catch My Party! Of course the full details were listed here, but if you want to see the party in all its glory on this awesome site, click here!

Oct 6, 2014

Olivia's Teddy Bears' Picnic 1st Birthday Party!

The only way I brainwashed myself to cope with the fact that my little baby was officially turning ONE, was to focus all my energy towards throwing her an amazing 1st birthday party! Ok, I was still super emotional every time I really thought about it, but it definitely helped some!

This may be my favorite party that I've planned yet! I had a lot of time (more than usual) to plan this party so I took my time thinking of each and every detail, finding coupons and creating DIY alternatives. The theme selection was taken into great consideration. I wanted something gender neutral (because the ratio of boys to girls in our group is totally unbalanced), something baby-ish (because she will have many years to come to choose her own birthday themes), and something outdoors to be able to give the bigger kids playground options. Once I came across the Teddy Bears' Picnic theme on Pinterest, I knew it was perfect! I loved the book and song when I was a little girl so it's probably safe to say that I'm reliving my childhood a little. :)

I couldn't really find any cute graphics that went with the image I had in my mind, so I just created it all. This theme I designed has more of a modern feel and is bright and colorful--the opposite of what I found online. I'm not hogging them all to myself--These party items are available at my Etsy shop for other mommies out there who are just as picky as me! If there’s something you like that’s not listed in the shop, just send me a message!

Invitations
I started with the invite and everything else evolved from there! I got them printed at OvernightPrints.com and they did a great job. (Note: They are usually hit-or-miss but thankfully, no hiccups this time around!) Custom address labels were attached and off they went to Olivia’s picnic guests!

Entrance to the Party
Bear Ears made of tiara headbands and felt were available for kids to pick up on their way to the party. I loved seeing the kiddies wearing them during the party. The Teddy Bears' Picnic book was on display, as well as a sign featuring a line from the book. These signs are available here.

Indoor Tables and Centerpieces
Centerpieces were made from large cans, covered with wood patterned gift wrap and a cute sticker label, and topped with a teddy bear cut-out on a stick. Red gingham tablecloths were placed on each table of the entire party. (Note: Tablecloths were purchased from the dollar store but I don’t recommend them—most tore the second we took them out of the bag! I guess you get what you pay for!)

Cake and Dessert Table
This table was full of treats including Teddy Grahams in picnic baskets, teddy bear Cake Pops on real wood stumps and amazing two-tiered cake by Thelma, cupcakes sitting in basket liners, gummy bears in snack containers, and s'mores cotton candy disguised as "Bear Stuffing". Labels available here!

Teddy Bear Workshop
The kids went home with teddy bears to host their own Teddy Bears' Picnic! It was a DIY version of Build-A-Bear! I purchased unstuffed wholesale bear skins and stuffing, and attached tags to show that each bear belonged to a child. The station also included foam hearts to add inside the bear, birth certificates for them to personalize, party hats, and house bags to take the bears home in. A kiddie-sized table and chairs were set up for the workshop. The striped fabric backdrop featured bear faces made out of tissue paper fans and a poster for instructions on how to build the bear. Check the Etsy shop for a digital printable set!

Picnic in the Woods
A picnic area was set up within trees and included blankets, and baskets with toys and balloons.
Selfie Station
This photo op area was meant for the kids to take photos having a picnic with their new bears. It was complete with props and a sign saying how so beary cute they are! This was a last minute area we threw together, and I’m so glad we did! The pictures that came from this were adorable!

Although it was a lot of work, every minute was worth it when I saw this face! Olivia had a great 1st birthday party!