Halloween candy table

halloween-candy-table

This weekend we had a neighborhood “sweets” potluck. It’s our way of getting together one last time before we all go into hibernation for the winter. {wink} This was our candy table for the kids: crashing witch cupcakes, mummy cupcakes, witch hat cookies… and oh yes, the flying bats over the table were inspiration from Home & Garden Magazine’s October issue. Super easy to make from construction paper and easy to hang with a few straight pins.

candy-carmel-apples

And this is just a shot of the carmel apples I made and my son’s favorite… gummy worms! Yum! (Note the simple and economical embellishments… ribbon can work wonders to a plain cake plate or square vase.)

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customer: swashbucklin inspiration

pirate-party-table-decor

I was Googling {it’s now a verb!} around and came across a very fun picture of a pirate birthday party. I clicked to see more and realized it was our table decor, pirate ship, gable favor boxes (can’t take credit for the fun stickers) and polka dot & stripe black candles.  It’s rare that we get to see what magic moms put together when they buy our supplies and I have to admit I giggled a little. I still love love love that moms like our designs and decor enough to want it for their little ones. Anyway, I digress! Here is the beautiful pirate birthday party for two twin boys from the erinandaaron.com blog.

pirate-party-banner

She crafted this wonderful door hanger to greet her guests and this beautiful birthday party banner. {Great work mom!}

pirate-cake

As I mentioned, the party was for twins so they not only had this beautiful cake for guests, but they made it very special and had individual cakes for the boys. {There are our candles!}

pirate-party-games

And what’s a party without games. Love the walk the plank! And check out the treasure hunt. If you like what you see here you need to visit erinandaaron.com to read all the wonderful details and resources.

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mad hatter tea party

mad-hatter-tea-party-cups

I won’t lie to you, this Alice in Wonderland mad hatter tea party took some serious effort by Donna at Party Wishes, but I think you’ll agree that the outcome was well worth it.

mad-hatter-tea-party-table

She had her hands full from making the croquet game complete with 4′ tall croquet wickets (out of 1/4″ plywood, painted both sides, supported by 1×1″ pieces of wood with rebar drilled into the bottoms), stuffed flamingo covered mallets and hedgehog balls (4″ styrofoam balls covered in paper and Mod Podge) to hand painting massive tea cups (from the L.A. Flower Mart) to setting a bright and beautiful table.

So creative and so well executed.

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bonjour bridal shower

Black is in for bridal showers… elegant, always beautiful and it goes with everything! The trend is definately to partner it with a vibrant pink. For just such an ocassion we recently launched our “divine,” “blossoms,” and “bubbly” invitations and decor. And for additional inspiration, here are a few “real” party pics we found at The Hostess Blog.

bonjour-bridal-shower-table

As you can see, beautiful patterns of card stock from the craft store can be your best friend when planning a party. They used this demask pattern for thier placemats. What a smart and inexpensive way to set a beautiful table. 

bonjour-bridal-shower-centerpiece

Their inspiration was not only the color, but the Eiffel Tower, hence the bonjour message on the paper lanterns over the table. So cute! 

The part I loved the most was the favor idea. The bride’s mother passed away from cancer a few years ago so instead of a favor the hostesses made a donation to the Susan G Komen foundation.  They created donation cards and wrapped them in tulle so that each guest could remember the bride’s mother was there in spirit and watching down from heaven.

Great work ladies!

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cowboy birthday treats

cowboy-birthday-treats

Here are a few more presentation ideas and treats from my little guy’s wild west birthday bash a few weeks ago. For the presentation, I simply took several square vases and embellished them with the same bandana ribbon and twine that I used on the cake tier. Just a dot of hot glue and they won’t move. Plus, they clean up easy so you can transform them again for your next gathering. 

As for the treats, I slaved over placing the Twizzlers (aka cowboy ropes) in the tall vase {wink}. The chocolate dipped marshmallows took a little more time, but not much. Melt your chocolate in a double boiler, spear three marshmallows on a lollipop stick, coat the marshmallows using a silicon brush, add a few candy stars and lay them on wax paper to cool. For the final touch, package them in cello bags. I have to admit, I didn’t make enough. They were a hit.

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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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