Archive | Party Planning

The Anatomy of a Dessert Table

Once again, I feel like a “real” blogger today with my good friend and photographer snapping all of these dessert table photos for me. Check out her contact info at the end of this post.

I recently put together a dessert table for a party and thought, there is definitely a bit of a science behind this so I wanted to share some great tips with you.  I think there are four main things you need when designing or setting up a dessert table.  Keep reading to see all four of them and a ton more ideas too.

How to Set Up a Dessert Table

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1. Height

Be sure to vary the height of your desserts.  A good rule of thumb is to put the things in the back higher so they can be reached.  A variety of heights also adds a ton of interest to your table. I used some wood slices, different height cake stands, and a variety of candy jars to differ the heights of my table.

How to set up a dessert table, dessert table how to, dessert table styling, dessert table backdropHow to set up a dessert table, dessert table how to, dessert table styling, dessert table backdropHow to set up a dessert table, dessert table how to, dessert table styling, dessert table backdrop2. A Backdrop

To tie the whole table and party together use a backdrop.  Having a backdrop at your dessert table makes it a focal point of the party.  It also allows you one big area to go overboard with the theme.  And it makes all of your desserts pop.

For this dessert table I simply used some kraft wrapping paper as a backdrop and added some paper flowers and a super quick banner.  I’ll be doing a tutorial post on that banner soon.  I love that I could just write whatever I needed on the wrapping paper backdrop.

Other great ideas to make an easy backdrop are to use tablecloths, shower curtains, balloons, or streamers.  I love the use of decorated pallets at this rustic wedding as a backdrop.  Flowers, banners, and lights are also really great options.

How to set up a dessert table, dessert table how to, dessert table styling, dessert table backdropHow to set up a dessert table, dessert table how to, dessert table styling, dessert table backdropHow to set up a dessert table, dessert table how to, dessert table styling, dessert table backdrop3. A Table and Tablecloth

So this may be a no brainer, but to make a dessert table, you will need a table or something similar to set all of your desserts on.

Instead of just using a table think outside the box and use what you have around your home.  Try using a dresser, a collection of side tables, a bar cart, wine barrels, or a vanity as a dessert table.  Using something unexpected really adds dimension to your dessert table.

Obviously a tablecloth is a great way to tie into the party color scheme.  I highly recommend investing in a plain white linen tablecloth.  You’ll be able to pull it out for so many occasions and it looks so much better than a plastic, themed, throw away tablecloth.  I promise you’ll get your money’s worth out of it.

How to set up a dessert table, dessert table how to, dessert table styling, dessert table backdrop4. A Variety of Dessert

You can’t have a dessert table without the dessert!  I love all desserts, but having a variety ensures your guests will find something they like.  Mix it up with cookies, cakes, pies, cobblers, candy, cupcakes, or macaroons.  Not a baker?  No worries, your local grocery store has plenty of options for you.

I didn’t bake a thing for this dessert table, but picked everything up at the grocery store and didn’t break the bank.  I was excited to see so many options too.

How to set up a dessert table, dessert table how to, dessert table styling, dessert table backdropHow to set up a dessert table, dessert table how to, dessert table styling, dessert table backdropHow to set up a dessert table, dessert table how to, dessert table styling, dessert table backdropNow that you have the four critical parts of a dessert table, I’d love to see what you put together for your next party.  Be sure to tag @thedailyhostess on Facebook and Instagram so I can see all of your creations.

Do you have any other ideas that you feel need to be part of a dessert table?

Photos courtesy of the talented Tricia at Tricia June Photography.  Email for info at tjephotos@gmail.com or visit her Facebook page here.

 

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October Party Round Up

Typically at the start of each month I like to do a round up post of ideas for parties all month long.  I’ve gotten out of the habit, you know, because I had a baby and all!  Well I’m back to it this month with lots of ideas to celebrate all month long.

October celebration round up, opal themed party, October party ideas, opal party ideas, blush and ice blue party ideasI think October is thought of for two reasons, Halloween and Breast Cancer Awareness Month.  So to start lets kick it off with one of those events.

October: Breast Cancer Awareness Month

To raise awareness for breast cancer while also celebrating, try hosting a fundraising party.  Host a party, bonus if it’s a pink theme, and donate what’s raised to the Susan G. Komen Foundation.

So how do you host a fundraising party?  There are so many ways!

  • Put gift baskets together and have people buy them as their party favor, donate the proceeds to your charity
  • Pass around a basket and take a collection, just be sure to include that you’ll be doing so on the party invitation
  • Do any of your friends have a talent?  Painting? Singing? Ask them to perform and charge for tickets
  • Sell memorabilia at the party and donate the proceeds to your charity

October: Opal Themed Party

October’s birthstone is Opal.  Opal is a fun gemstone full of sparkling ice blue and blush pink colors.  If you have a birthday in October it’s a great idea to throw a party with an ice blue and blush pink color scheme to celebrate your birthstone.

These are great inspiration boards for your color scheme.

Get your invitations here to carry the color scheme through from start to finish.

October 11th: International Day of the Girl

There are so many ideas to celebrate this day.  Be super girly and host an in home spa day.

Have a girls sleepover where you watch girl themed movies like Wonder Woman.  Complete the evening with a popcorn bar.

If you want to have an adult celebration of International Day of the Girl, host a “Glitter and Glam” party.  Ask all of your guests to wear something sparkly, have sparkly decor, and even add sparkles to your drinks and food.  Try this method to make your ice glitter!

October 16th: Bosses Day

You may not have a boss that you love to work for, but if you’re so lucky to enjoy your boss, why not celebrate them? Here are several ideas to give them a little treat with a fun twist on them.

Free printable donut labels are the perfect way to jazz up bringing donuts to the office and for your boss.

Or if you’d rather give your boss a little thirst quencher, try this lemonade printable.

Oct 31st: Halloween

There are so many ways to celebrate Halloween besides just dressing up in costume on the day.  Make it a party all month long!

Turn your bar cart into a spooky drink station this Halloween with a few of these tips. Click through to see!Set up a Halloween bar cart for happy hour throughout the month.  You can get all the details on the one I set up last year here.

You can also spread the celebration to your neighbors by giving “boo baskets.”  If you’re unfamiliar with what that is or how to do it, stay tuned because I’m going to be sharing all the information you’ll need in an upcoming blog post.  Plus, I’ll be offering a free printable to label your boo basket.

What else are you planning on celebrating in October?  Did any of these ideas inspire you to throw a party or spread some celebration?  Tell me in the comments below!

I can’t wait for you to see all we have planned this month here at The Daily Hostess!

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10 Kids Birthday Party Entertainment Ideas

Kids birthday activities, kids birthday entertainment, kids birthday ideas, how to entertain kids, birthday party ideasThis is a quick post today, but it’s full of ideas and inspiration! I’ve realized more and more as my daughter has gotten older and we’ve had and attended more and more kids parties, that kids, especially young kids, need something to entertain them at a party.  To help I’ve put together a list of 10 kids birthday party entertainment ideas.

I’ve broken the list down by age range to make the activities geared towards what they would be interested in.  If you’re planning a kids birthday party anytime soon I hope this list gives you some inspiration or ideas for entertainment.

10 Kids Birthday Entertainment Ideas

Age 4 and under

  • Sand/Water table, dumping, digging, and splashing
  • Indoor obstacle course, think jumping pads, crawling under things, and slides

Age 5-8

  • Art station with easels and paints set up
  • Minute to win it games

Age 10-12

  • Neighborhood scavenger hunt
  • Field day games

Age 13-15

  • Video game tournament
  • Start a band at home with school instruments

Age 16-18

  • Car wash for charity
  • Make-up party and photo booth

Kids birthday activities, kids birthday entertainment, kids birthday ideas, how to entertain kids, birthday party ideasDo you think your kids would like any of these ideas to keep them busy and having fun at their next birthday party? What kinds of entertainment and activities have you done in the past that were a big hit?

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Neighborhood Fall Festival Party Plan Checklist

Well, the days have started turning more crisp and you can feel fall in the air here.  It’s such a nice change from hot weather, but I’m not looking forward to what comes next. Good thing I’ve got an area to keep winter out of my house.  To celebrate fall I created this fun party plan checklist to host a neighborhood fall festival.

Fall neighborhood block party ideas, neighbor gift ideas, neighborhood parties, neighborhood fall partyWe have a pretty active neighborhood and have started having neighborhood gatherings a few times a year.  Fall is a great time to get together and celebrate. Use this party plan as inspiration and to gather your neighbors and celebrate the cooler weather. Just click on the picture and download the checklist to start planning your party today!

Fall neighborhood block party ideas, neighbor gift ideas, neighborhood parties, neighborhood fall partyParty Theme and Decor

For your party you first need a theme.  There is nothing more synonymous with fall than plaid and pumpkins. Let those things be your guide for your party theme and decor.  Use plaid blankets as tablecloths and over hay bales for a fun seating area.  Set hay bales up in the street around a fire pit or bonfire to help you stay warm during chilly evenings.

Decorate the party with multi-colored mums and pumpkins. Create table runners from pumpkins for the dining area. The best part is that it will be heavy enough to hold down the tablecloths.

Guest List

Be sure to design an on theme invitation to send to all of your neighbors with all the details of the party. You can easily make one yourself with these tips and it’s free.  Walk them door to door or send them out via email. Because you’re inviting your neighbors there is no need to stamp an envelope.

Food and Drinks

Feeding a large group of people is hard, so don’t take on the task yourself.  Plan the neighborhood party as a pot luck.  I highly recommend assigning people a different dish or having categories that people sign up to bring.  Doing so assures that a full menu is covered and that there will be enough for everyone.

A delicious and on theme menu for any fall party revolves around soups, chili’s, and stews.  Start with that and then expand to include fall themed sides dishes.  Things like cornbread, stuffing, vegetable casseroles, and fall salads.  Check out my Pinterest board for lots of inspiration.

For dessert, you can’t go wrong with smore’s, especially if your party is set up around a fire pit or bonfire.  Another on theme dessert would be caramel apples.  You could make these ahead of time or set up a buffet station where guests could dip their own apples and cover them with a variety of toppings like nuts, chocolate, sprinkles, or crushed cookies.

Fall neighborhood block party ideas, neighbor gift ideas, neighborhood parties, neighborhood fall partyDrinking apple cider is kind of a must at this time of year so offering an alcoholic and non-alcoholic version will allow everyone to enjoy it.  You could also offer hot cocoa or mulled cider.

Activities and Games

If your neighborhood is like mine and full of kiddos, you’ll need some activities to keep the kids occupied so the adults can enjoy conversation and a bowl of chili.

There are so many fall themed activities you could include at your festival.  A pumpkin carving contest is a great way to get people excited even before the party since they’ll have to carve their pumpkin beforehand and then have it judged at the party.  You oculd elect judges or just do a simple voting system for the best pumpkin.

Bobbing for apples is a great game for the kids. Just be sure to regularly change out the water or have individual buckets for bobbing to keep things a little more hygienic.

Fall neighborhood block party ideas, neighbor gift ideas, neighborhood parties, neighborhood fall partyOrganizing a neighborhood hayride would be so fun.  If you don’t have a tractor and trailer, try making hayrides in wagons for the little kids or the back of a pick up truck for the older kids.

Other go to party activities would be to have someone talented do face painting or organize a fall themed neighborhood scavenger hunt.  Bike races for the kids are fun, and what toddler doesn’t love a bounce house?

Be sure to click the here or the image below to download and print your own Neighborhood Fall Festival Party Plan Checklist to start planning your party.

Fall neighborhood block party ideas, neighbor gift ideas, neighborhood parties, neighborhood fall partyA neighborhood party is such a great way to get to know your neighbors.  It helps to break from the monotony of just waving hello when you see your neighbors out.  It forces you to work together to put the party on, and get to know each other over a bowl of chili.  Who knows what you might find you have in common or what kind of friendship can be built.

Happy Fall Y’all!

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My Favorite Resource for DIY Invitations

Have you ever known exactly what you wanted your party invitation to look like, but just couldn’t find the one?  I’m not a fan of those pre-made invitations at the store either.  You know the ones where you just enter the who, what, when, and where.

I’ve always felt that invitations were one of the most important parts of the party.  It’s the first thing people see.  It tells the story of what the party is going to be like.  Not only through the words used, but the design of the invitation, colors used, and how it feels.

I’ve found a great resource within the past year or so that is excellent for making your own invitations.  I’ve been using it for a while, so I feel like I know how to use it really well and I want to share some tips and tricks with you.  The program is called Canva.  There is a free version which can accommodate pretty much everything you would need to do.  There is a paid version, but I haven’t felt the need to use it (or pay for it) yet.  It’s an online program with pre-made and do it yourself graphic designs.

Here are a few of the invitations I’ve made for my own parties and others using Canva.  I’ve blurred out some of the personal parts of the invitations.

Custom DIY Invitations

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I love the variety of templates that Canva has to use.  Plus, it’s really easy to customize the colors, fonts, and most other parts of the invitation.  Below is a quick tutorial on how to make your own custom invitations using Canva.  Just go to canva.com to get started.

Step 1-Find your invitation template

DIY Invitation, how to make customizeable invitation, DIY Graphic Design, how to use CanvaAfter going to canva.com, you can click on “create a design” to create a one of a kind design for anything you may need.  Canva specifically has invitation templates you can use by clicking on the invitation option under the “Events” section.

Step 2- Choose an invitation template

DIY Invitation, how to make customizeable invitation, DIY Graphic Design, how to use CanvaScroll through the pre-made invitation templates to the left of your screen.  There are a ton of options for all kinds of parties and celebrations.  Just be sure to select an invitation that has the little “free” sign in the bottom right corner, otherwise you’ll have to pay a small fee to download your invitation once you’ve completed it.

Step 3- Customize your invitation

DIY Invitation, how to make customizeable invitation, DIY Graphic Design, how to use CanvaYou can customize the invitation you chose by clicking on any of the elements within the invitation.  Feel free to change the font, font color, size, alignment, background colors, design colors, and position of most elements.

You can also delete anything by clicking the little trash can in the upper right hand corner.  Other options like grouping elements together, changing the transparency or moving elements in front or behind each other are available.

DIY Invitation, how to make customizeable invitation, DIY Graphic Design, how to use CanvaYou can even create custom colors with hex codes by clicking on the “+” sign in the color section.

Step 4- Download your invitation

This program is super easy to use.  A little clicking around and you’ll be making your own invitations in no time. Once you’ve created the exact invitation you want click on the download button.  Once it’s downloaded you can print the invitations our at home or send them to a printer.  One trick I like to use is downloading the invitation as a JPG then having them printed at Costco.  Printing the invitations as pictures that are 5×7 is only a few cents per invitation.

Need Another Shortcut?

If you don’t want to hassle with creating invitations yourself you can always ask me. I’ll need a few details to start, then I’ll give you an option of three different invitations to choose from.  Once you decide which invitation you like, I’ll send it to you to download. All you have to do then is print them off at home or send them to a printer, stuff some envelopes, and send to your guests!

I’m excited to offer this new service and hope that it can help take some of the stress away from your party planning. I love playing around with invitations and am excited to make something beautiful for you!  Email thedailyhostess@gmail.com for pricing and invitation details.

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Celebrating everyday!