A Sugar & Spice Baby Shower

Last weekend, I had the great pleasure of hostessing a baby shower for one of my good friends.  The other hostesses and I had so much fun thinking of how we could best honor our friend.  We decided upon a Sugar & Spice theme with a pink, yellow and orange color palette and subtle touches of elephants and polka dots (the Mommy’s choice for the nursery).  Our menu featured sweet and savory flavors and we incorporated baby clothes with elephants and polka dots as decor.  The adorable invitation was ordered from Tiny Prints and Etsy was the perfect place to find the cupcake toppers.  Everything came together perfectly for a fun, whimsical, and sophisticated baby shower!

Sugar & Spice Baby Shower Menu

Rosemary Lemonade

Minted Iced Tea

White Sparkling Sangria

Deviled Eggs

Tea Sandwiches

Curried Chicken Salad

Fig, Prosciutto and Arugula Pizza

Watermelon, Mint and Feta Salad

Cupcakes, macaron and white chocolate lollipop favors

Artistic Invitations

I’m loving all of the artful painted creations I’ve been seeing around the Web.  Take a look at some of these beautiful and inspiring examples.

via Sweetest Occasion

via Momental Designs

via Wiley Valentine

via Style Me Pretty

via Momental Designs

French Friday: Paris Memories

It’s hard to believe I’ve been back from my birthday trip to Paris for two months.  Needless to say, April and May have been very busy.  Here are just a few of my favorites memories from my trip:

Musee Marmottan - an amazing collection of impressionist paintings in a beautiful historic home that, interestingly enough, can be rented for events

The delicious and visually stunning Une Dimanche a Paris, Pierre Cluizel’s chocolaterie and some goodies I bought for myself.  I was completely enamored by the chocolate dipped clementine confit.  Amazing!  Love the design, love the chocolate, love the packaging!

The chandelier in our hotel lobby, the Christian Lacroix designed Hotel Bellechasse

Even something as common as a drain pipe is a piece of art in Paris

A beautiful idea for DIY floral decor spotted in a shop window

Spring's floral bounty overflows at a local fleuriste

The last night in Paris, we had dinner at L’Absinthe, one of Michel Rostang’s restaurants.  It was simple, intimate, delicious and delightful.  I definitely plan to attempt to recreate at least one item from my dinner – the Chartreuse mojito.  Haven’t found a recipe yet, so let me know if you have any suggestions.

Lots of good food, shopping, walking and fabulousness, and, as usual, I’m ready to go back for more.

All photos by me.

Give Me a Sign

Signs, signs, everywhere there are signs!  There are so many wonderful ways to personalize your event.  From directing your guests where to go to informing them about what to expect to inviting them to become an active participant in your lasting event memories, signs can be both functional and decorative.  I’ve been collecting examples of signs that are creative, unique and interesting.

via Green Wedding Shoes

via Green Wedding Shoes

via Style Me Pretty

via Style Me Pretty

via Green Wedding Shoes

via Green Wedding Shoes

via Style Me Pretty

via Style Me Pretty

via Snippet&Ink

via Brooklyn Bride

via Green Wedding Shoes

via Green Wedding Shoes

DIY: Sound of Music Dessert Table

Several months ago I saw this and this on Amy Atlas’s blog.  My niece, Addison, was going to be turning 5 soon and I wanted to do something really special for her.  Addison and her little sister love The Sound of Music.   So, I started thinking about how I could do a dessert display inspired by the story.  There were just so many ideas to play with that, I, ultimately, focused on the song “My Favorite Things.”  In addition to making some of the things in the song like mittens and snowflakes, I mixed in a few of Addie’s favorite things like books, the color pink and lollipops.

This was very much a team effort.  My mother and sister-in-law and I were baking and decorating like crazy leading up to Addie’s birthday.  When I was a little girl, my mother would make these amazing princess/doll cakes for my birthday.  Each year, the dress would become more and more beautiful.  I asked my mother to make a similar cake, but decorated like Maria’s wedding dress since my nieces love to play “wedding” to the music from the movie.  My mother also painted the fabulous backdrop inspired by the “Hills Are Alive” scene.  My sister-in-law and I mixed, cut and iced cookies and made and decorated cupcakes.  Then, we had fun putting it all together.

We wanted this to be the first thing she saw when she came downstairs.   It was a lot of work, but so worth the look on Addie’s face when she saw all of the goodies.  Only on your birthday can you have candy, cookies and cake for every meal!

Addie celebrates with her new Barbie Maria doll.

A special thanks everyone who helped contribute!

Holiday Treats

About twenty years ago, one of my Mother’s students gave her a tin of homemade Cracker Candy as a holiday present.  We immediately begged for the recipe.  This simple and easy to make treat is great as a little gift for friends this holiday season!

Cracker Candy

2 sticks butter

1 cup sugar

1 sleeve of Saltines or similar crackers

1 bag of chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Line a cookie sheet with sides with foil.  Lay crackers side-by-side.  Melt butter in saucepan over medium-high heat.  Add sugar and stir until sugar starts to dissolve, about 3 minutes.  Pour evenly over crackers.  Bake for 10 minutes.  Remove from oven and sprinkle chocolate chips over crackers.  Bake for another 3 minutes.  Using a spatula, spread the melted chocolate like icing to cover evenly.  Place pan in refrigerator for one hour to set.  Using a knife or your hands, break into medium to small pieces.

Other toppings to consider- toasted coconut, peanut butter chips, and candy cane pieces.