introducing martinis & mayhem

martinismayhem_thecelebrationshoppe

Halloween isn’t just for little ghosts and goblins. Big witches and warlocks need a little fun too and our new “martinis & mayhem” custom invitation is perfect for the occasion, from the modern style of the pinstripe background to the whimsical style of the BOO! glass marker. And you must check out our sleek “eek!” party decor too. {wink}

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introducing drop in

dropin_thecelebrationshoppe

Our new “drop in” invitation is super fun from the spooky spider to the polka dot “BOO!” and it’s perfect for a Halloween block party or open house. We have not only the table runner and treat bags shown, but also dessert plates, beverage napkins, pumpkin paper lanters and more. Holiday supplies are limited so don’t delay. You’ll be haunted if you miss out! {giggle}

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introducing haunted

hauntedhouse_thecelebrationshoppe1

We’ve launched our 2009 Halloween party invitations and decor and I have to admit I’m excited. This design in particular is known as “haunted” and as you can see is accompanied by a spooky centerpiece and bat cupcake toppers, plus much much more. Take a peek at the entire Halloween collection!

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introducing simply blue

simply-blue

You can never go wrong with clean simple elegant designs when planning a baby shower or bridal shower… hence, “simply blue.” We launched a pink version, “simply pink,” several weeks ago and quickly realized that we needed to represent the baby boys and the something blue bridal showers.

We chose a zen blossoms blue and brown plate and napkin and paired them with a number of bridal shower and baby shower cookie cutters. Take a peak, I’m sure it will not only calm your mom-to-be or bride-to-be’s jitters, but it will be a beautiful backdrop to such a fun day.

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introducing pink & black couture

blossom-butterflies-invitation_the-celebration-shoppe

I previewed the decor for this new design a few weeks ago and now I’m proud to say that the design is complete. And not only this one, “Blossoms,” but we also designed two more invitations, below, with this same color palette. All three designs and decor will be available for purchase early next week.

divine-bubbly-invitations_the-celebration-shoppe

Introducing “Divine,” a splash of whimsy flowers perfect for a tween or teen birthday party, a baby or bridal shower or even a garden party. And introducing “Bubbly,” a fun martini glass overflowing with the bubbly stuff. This one is perfect for a bachelorette party or even a girl’s night in. My book club would dig this one too. And yes, we do read books. {giggle}

Can’t wait to get them in the shoppe! No later than Monday, June 29, I promise. {wink}

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sheriff badge rice crispies

sheriff-badge-rice-crispy-treats

As I mentioned in my hosting a hoe down post, my little one has food allergies. He’s a big fan of the rice crispy treat so I molded the sweet treat into star cookie cutters (available in our shoppe) and then iced them as favors for our guests. We placed them in pails that were embellished with bandana ribbon, the same used on our cake plate, and a fun wooden cowboy boot from the craft store. {50 cents already painted people!} As for the sign, I just picked up a sheet of scrapbooking paper that looked like old wooden boards and imprinted it with the Playbill font (commonly found in Microsoft products). 

Okay, back to the treat. Here’s what you’ll need to decorate:

  • Vanilla or cream cheese icing
  • Freezer weight resealable bags
  • #2 and #4 icing tips and two connectors
  • Red and blue gel food coloring
  •  Lollipop sticks

And here are the easy steps:

  1. First, one tip on molding these, make sure that you butter your cookie cutter so that the sweet falls out easily.
  2. Apply your food coloring to your icing. Gel is best so that your icing doesn’t become watery.
  3. Insert your connector into your bag, insert your icing and then add your tip. I used a #2 tip to outline the badges.
  4. Once you’ve outlined, take the outer connector and tip off of your bag and microwave your icing for seven to eight seconds. You want to heat it up just enough for flooding.
  5. Using the #4 tip, pipe in a zig zag motion inside of the badge and then pull it to the corners with a toothpick or small icing spatula.
  6. Allow the icing to set; ten minutes should do it.
  7. For the lettering I used a #2 tip and for the number I used a #4 tip.

As for packaging, allow the treats to set for four to six hours before you insert them into cello bags so as not to crush the lettering. Happy baking!

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hosting a hoe down

cowboy-birthday-party-cake

My youngest is turning three and he wanted a wild west cowboy bash. So as you can imagine, I gave him one. {wink} Those who read me often know that he has severe food allergies so I needed to make a cake and treats that were dairy and nut free. (He was released from the egg allergy thank goodness; cake is not cake without eggs!)

Candidly I was really unsure what I was going to do until a few days before the party. I decided on a chocolate and vanilla cupcake tier with a 4×4″ cake (for my little guy) on top. Not only does the tier give the table height, but it also made a clear separation between his cake and the guest cakes… especially since I tried my hand at chocolate transfer. {loved it!}

So for his cake, I could use dairy-free chocolate transfer (trust me you can’t tell the difference in taste), but I’ve only been able to find it in regular chocolate, no white chocolate or other colors, and I didn’t think that was very interesting so I opted for a rice crispy  (which he loves) sherrif badge. No worries, I made more as favors for his little buddies.

However, I did use chocolate transfer for my guest cupcakes. This was actually my first attempt and I was amazed at how easy it is. Here are a few tips:

  1. Print out your design. If small enough put multiple designs on a single sheet.
  2. Tape your template to a cutting board (so that you can turn the image if you need to).
  3. Cover the image with wax paper.
  4. Use melting chocolate (available at all craft and baking supply stores). I used Wilton red, yellow and dark chocolate.
  5. Use a freezer weight resealable bag, heating your chocolate in 8-10 second intervals and massaging it with your hands between heating. (Make sure and insert your connector before melting your chocolate.)
  6. Pipe your design backwards, meaning pipe the design you want to show on top first and then layer the rest of the design on top of it. Here’s a pictorial from the Love-Sweet-Love blog.
  7. Allow the chocolate to cool, peel it off, flip it over and apply. Tah-dah!

As for the cake plate decoration, this part was a lot of fun because I got to use my glue gun! You guys know I love it! {giggle} Anyway, I embellished Martha Stewart’s square tier cake plates (8″, 10″ and 12″) with a 2″ bandana ribbon and twine. I applied the glue to the ribbon and then applied the ribbon to the cake plate. Doing it this way allows it to cool slightly before applying to the plate. As for the twine, I put it on second leaving a two inch overhang at one corner. Once the glue set, it is almost instant, I separated the twine ends and frayed them slightly.

I’ll post more ideas, including how to make the sheriff rice crispy treat, from our bash later this week. So stay tuned and happy baking!

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campout cupcake

camping-out-cupcakes-with-smores-and-tent1

I designed these fun camp cupcakes a few weeks ago for my beautiful little boys and of course they go perfectly with our “campout” birthday party theme too!

My boys love tents, roasting marshmallows and fishing, so I needed to incorporate each element. If you’ve not noticed yet, there is also a little sleeping bag in the tent {giggle}. I couldn’t resist piping one since my boys love to use theirs on their beds sometimes! Oh, and by the way, these are the cupcakes I entered in the parenting.com cake and cupcake contest that I mentioned last week.

Here’s what you’ll need to decorate your white cupcakes (use egg whites only to preserve the color of your cupcake wrappers):

  • Hershey bars (2 3/4 pieces per tent)
  • Mini goldfish crackers
  • Fiber one cereal (campfire logs)
  • Cream cheese icing
  • Blue, green and red gel food coloring
  • Toothpicks
  • #46 tip (flat side for sleeping bag)
  • #107 tip (campfire flame)
  • #233 tip (grass)
  • white bakers wire (could use floral wire with non-edible items)

And here are the easy steps:

  1. Using the grass tip, ice your cupcakes. (TIP: You’ll want to add all of your decorations before the icing sets too much so that the grass will act as adhesive to keep the items in place.)
  2. Build your tents next. Take two full blocks of chocolate and trim the third, the base, to 2/3 its normal size. On the base pipe your sleeping bag, a short strip for the pillow and a long strip for the bag.
  3. Melt a block or two of chocolate in the microwave to use as adhesive for assembling your tent. Apply the chocolate with a toothpick and hold your tent in place for a few seconds to allow it to set. Place it on your cupcake.
  4. Using Fiber One cereal as your campfire logs {I know… but they look just like little sticks!}, set them up in a pyramid shape and then pipe a dollop of icing on top for the flame.
  5. Finally we create our fishing pole with a toothpick, I used colored ones, a mini goldfish and bakers wire. Simply wrap the wire around your fish and wind it around your toothpick pole. I placed it so that it is over the edge and then embellished the cupcake with a paper wave design as if they were on an island.

I hope you enjoy my little creation, my boys really did! As always, I hope you’re inspired to craft, bake, create and celebrate!

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divine preview

divine-pink-and-black-table-decor21

We’re working on a new invitation design, but I simply couldn’t wait to share the beautiful table decor now. I only hope you are excited as we are. This table would be perfect for almost any type of girlfriend gathering: bridal shower, baby shower, birthday or even bachelorette party!

pink-and-black-chic-cupcake

Oh, and yes; the cupcakes are mine {wink}. Look for this decor and a beautiful new invitation to complement in about a week. Can’t wait! {UPDATE: New collections are in the shoppe: Divine, Blossoms and Bubbly!}

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parenting.com cake contest

04-42abOkay ladies… those that read me often {I love you guys} know that I like to create new cake, cupcake and treat ideas and to share other peoples wonderful ideas too. {My only quirk is I want to tell you how to make them… I hate seeing something fun but not having the “how tos” to pull it off! Anyway, I digress.}

Well for you fellow bakers out there parenting.com is having a cake, and cupcakes are welcome too, contest. It ends next Thursday, June 7, so pull out all those old pictures from birthdays and parties gone by and send them in. You never know, they may love it and you may walk away with a $500 gift certificate from Kmart.

 And for those of you wondering, yes, I entered something you’ve never seen before. {giggle} I’ll post my creation soon. Can’t wait to share it with you!

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