Party Guest}Hello Kitty Inspired Tea Shop Party

What isn’t to love about a Tea Party?  You get to decorate with tea cups and tea pots!  Today I am excited to share with you a darling Hello Kitty inspired tea party put together by Bird Crafts.
What little girl or big girl wouldn’t love this party! ?
Since Hello Kitty is a licensed brand, Bird Crafts really did paid “homage” to the theme with plenty of bows, stripes and cutesy pink and red motifs with a dash of aqua blue to freshen it up!
Because she likes to give my her own twist to popular or conventional party themes, she designed the party collection around a sweet, Tea Shoppe – Complete with pink milk off course!
The patterned backing sheets from this collection were used here to cover the milk box, and you can just see a peep of the tea cup in this photo, also customized for the occasion! All she did was to cut the sheet to size and stick with double-sided tape.

What little girl wouldn’t love to have her own gorgeous, Tea Shoppe with the most amazing cakes, cupcakes, cookies and sweet treats on her birthday? Even my big girls would!
The best part about this party is that all the printables are available to purchase at Bird Craft’s etsy shop! Be sure and pay her a visit and check out all the darling printables she has to offer.  Party planning doesn’t get any easier than that!!
Party Printables and Styling: Bird Crafts Party Shop
Tableware and cupcake stands: Casa
Pink and White stripped straws: Hey YoYo
Red polka dot paper cases: Plume de la Lune
Photography: Moi :)
For the complete, printable Hello Kitty Inspired Tea Shoppe Party that includes invites, cupcake toppers and more, visit her Etsy shoppe!

Party Guest}Sweet Pea First Birthday

Today I am excited to share with you an amazing first birthday party that one of my blog readers, Jessica put together for her sweet one year old baby.  Jessica is also the daughter in law of a couple at church – a family I love!!

The party Jessica put together was amazing.  So much love and care went into it.

Jessica  had been told by people told that a first birthday celebration was just for her, since the baby won’t remember.   This may be true but Jessica wanted to…

“celebrate big, make a fuss, hand-make every decoration, stay up late cooking and crafting and gluing, and invite all of Annalise’s little friends and their families over. I’ve been thinking about this party, this event to celebrate the life and miracle of my angel baby girl, for months, but I couldn’t articulate to myself why I wanted such a big fuss. Then I read a post from this blog and was struck by a short quote from a mother who lost her daughter to a choking accident two weeks shy of her second birthday. In a letter to her son on his first birthday, she wrote, “Dearest Little Peter Boy, I didn’t know that your sister, Lucy, would have only one birthday. Just one. We had a small party for her. And it was sweet and wonderful. But after she passed away, I realized what a big deal birthdays are. Another year alive. Another year with our loved ones. And I vowed that I would make your first birthday a huge celebration. And we did! It was all I could have hoped for and more.” I agree. They’re a big deal and they are indeed a miracle. One which I do not take for granted and Annalise’s party was my way of expressing that and reveling in it. I thank God for my precious baby.”

I have to say I totally agree with Jessica!!

The theme of the party was Sweet Pea,which is her daughter’s nickname.

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Jessica carried that fun theme through all the details of the party and created a beautiful, not to be forgotten event!

For Jessica, the name of the game was THRIFTY.  She wanted to put together a fun party from scratch without spending a lot of money. Look what Jessica did with some dollar store finds.  It is amazing what a little spray paint, glue and imagination can do!
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Glass bowls and candlesticks from the dollar store become lovely serving pieces!

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A little inexpensive tissue paper and craft paper and look what you have -

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I also love what she did with this fun little sign she found at the Dollar Store that fit her theme so perfectly!

Before:

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After:  So much cuter!

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Jessica’s attention to detail was wonderful.  She printed off labels at home to dress up and personalize her water bottles.

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She used utensils and paper goods from the Dollar Store but dressed them up a bit!
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Add  a fun vintage store find that was originally broken and dark brown.  I love spray paint!!
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Jessica then took an out grown tutu she already had and stuffed it into a vase and had an amazing party decoration

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There were lots of fun pink treats and some sweet peas too!!
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She even printed off some fun birthday themed artwork and changed out the artwork in her frames over the table for the party!  A detail woman after my own heart!!
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As you can see Jessica is also an amazing photographer so her sweet pea will remember this amazing first birthday as she relives it through the wonderful pictures her mother has taken.

Thank you Jessica for sharing your party with us.  The love and devotion you have to your daughter shines through every detail.

Happy Birthday Sweet Pea!
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Back To School Breakfast

by on September 7, 2010
in Table Decor, Uncategorized

School starts tomorrow here in Portland.

Even though it is later than most of the country I am still not ready.

I am not ready for my baby to start her last first day of school!

I decided that this momentous occasion called for a special celebration, a special back to school breakfast.

I knew how unrealistic it was to expect Tessa to be up and ready in time to enjoy a specially prepared breakfast on the first day of school – especially since school starts at 7:30 a.m.!

We decided that we would celebrate a day early so Tessa invited two of her sweet friends to join her for our special Back to School Breakfast.

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I made a quick trip to the Dollar Store and to my closet for the decor for the table.

This summer I had purchased these great chalkboard signs from the clearance table at a little gift shop in the Multnomah Village area of Portland.  I got both of them for $7.77.  It was at that time that the idea for some type of back to school breakfast began to formulate in my head.  I mean, how perfect is a chalkboard sign for a back to school breakfast!?  I added a little piece of red ribbon to finish it off.

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I love having the menu for any event or party displayed for people.  I don’t know about you but I really like to know what I’m eating!

I carried the chalkboard theme over to the placecards.  I bought some inexpensive ($1.00) frames at Craft Warehouse.  I took out the inside piece that you are suppose to put the picture in front of and sprayed it with black chalkboard paint to turn it into a little chalkboard.  Each girl knew exactly where they were suppose to sit!  Some little stands I found at the dollar store and have used for various other parties were the perfect thing to hold the chalkboards.

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I bought a three pack of the little, tiny composition notebooks from the Dollar Store too to put at each place setting along with a crayon in case they felt like coloring.

Two packs of crayons from the Dollar Store worked perfect to fill an small apothecary jar I have for part of the table decor.

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I also used a domed cake stand I already owned and filled it with a few red apples.  What’s a back to school breakfast without apples?!

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The red cake stand holding the blueberry muffins added color and interest to the table too.

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I am loving my new bottle from Ikea (about $2.00.) It that looks great on the table filled with orange juice.  I have been noticing these bottles at a lot of local restaurants lately filled with water and placed on each table.

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For recipes from our back to school breakfast be sure and visit me over at Your Homebased Mom.

The girls had a great time eating, visiting and laughing together.  Ready to start their first day of their senior year together!
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Do you do anything special for your kid’s first day of school?

Vintage Baby Shower

Several weeks ago I purchased an antique baby scale for my photographer friend Meg. I knew she wanted one for her newborn photo shoots and I wanted to thank her for the amazing job she had done on Tessa’s senior photos. I was excited to find one at a local vintage shop.  When I gave it to her I said there was only one stipulation.  She had to let me borrow it for a baby shower I was doing.  She of course agreed!

I knew that the vintage baby scale would be the perfect thing for the table decor.

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It was also the perfect thing to hold a photo of Baby Hope laying in the same scale!  And to hold baby Hope!

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I collected other vintage items from around my house and especially Tessa’s room.  I had to dig out the box of baby nursery decor that had been packed away years ago.  There are advantages to saving stuff!  It will come in handy!

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The old baby booties with a votive candle holder inside became the perfect thing to put on top of the Peter Rabbit books.

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I also covered the table with a lovely old vintage quilt I had picked up in a vintage shop.

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And the vintage baby chair I just had to have was perfect!

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The pink pom poms from Tessa’s sixteenth birthday party were also a perfect addition hanging from the kitchen nook ceiling.

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I also used lots of pictures of pretty Baby Hope on the table.

In frames….

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as a collage on a vintage wire rack….

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I also hung some little vintage dresses that usually hang as a valance in Tessa’s room on a ribbon clothesline.

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Remember that invitation....

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I have to say I think this was my favorite part of the decor.  Those old baby shoes came in handy again….

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I used my mother’s hostess trays.  I love those things and remember my mother using them at various showers she would hold while I was growing up.

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The shower was in the evening so for food I wanted a combination of sweet and savory.

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We had fruit salsa and cinnamon chips.

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Hummus and Pita Chips

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Sundried Tomato Pesto Palmiers (recipe coming soon to Your Homebased Mom)

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And this yummy St. Louis Ooey Gooey Berry Cake!  So good!
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There were also Lovely Lime Cupcakes.

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The food was yummy and the company delightful.  The new mommy and baby got lots of darling things too!    Every new mommy deserves a special party!

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Vintage Baby Shower Invitation

by on August 20, 2010
in Baby Shower, Invitations

Last week I hosted a baby shower for a new mom from church.

We decided to call it a Sip & See which is an opportunity for people to stop by, have a few sweets, do some mingling and most important some oohing and aahing over this cute little thing….
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Isn’t Baby Hope just about the most gorgeous little thing you have ever seen.  Look at those lips and my friend Meg who took the photos promises there was no touch up on them!

I had a darling little invite done up by The Parchment Place, a great little etsy shop.  She was so quick and easy to work with.  I had the invites ready to go and printed within 24 hours of contacting her.  She sent me the jpg as a download and I just uploaded it to Costco and had them printed there as a 5 x 7 photo.

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I used the theme of the baby clothes on the clothesline as part of the decorating for the shower too.  Check back tomorrow for all the details and photos on the shower!

Vintage Birthday Party

Today is my mother’s 80th birthday and to help her celebrate I put on a vintage birthday luncheon for her this past week.

I love everything vintage and have recently developed a fondness for vintage tablecloths so I wanted to incorporate those into the party.

The luncheon was held out on the patio in our garden.  Fortunately we had wonderful weather.  After a very rainy spring and early summer I was a little worried but the weather came through and it was almost too warm and sunny.  We pulled out the sun hats and sunglasses and everyone did fine.

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I also have a little collection of vintage aprons.  Since I had to use my ugly folding chairs I decided to dress them up a bit with the vintage aprons.  I used a double sided tape to tape them onto the top of the chairs.  It worked great.

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For the table decor I used my blue mason jars I had picked up last year for the backyard wedding reception I helped with.

I filled them with flowers from my garden and placed a jar on each table along with a couple of old, vintage books.

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The only flowers I had to buy was one bunch of hydrangea from Costco which I used in the arrangement I put on the serving table.

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I also used the blue and clear canning jars to display pictures of my mother through the ages.  People loved looking at the photos!

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I also added some vintage inspired pinwheels into some of the jars.

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I borrowed an old vintage quilt from a friend to use as a backdrop.  The serving table was right up against our fireplace and there was an ugly black vent I needed to cover up.  I ran a wire line and used clothes pins to hang it behind the table.  It worked perfect.

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I basically just found every vintage type thing in my house and used it to decorate with.  An old shelf from my girl’s room that was in the garage, a sign from Tessa’s room, books from the family room.  I just went around the house collecting things.

My Aunt Pam came down from Canada for the party and brought me this beautiful hat she found at a garage sale.  It very quickly became part of the decor.

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I like to use signage on my serving table.  I always like to know what I am eating and besides that it looks pretty!

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The menu consisted of three types of quiche, four salads, bread, cupcakes and cake.  For more details on the menu check out the recipes I’ll be posting over at Your Homebased Mom.

The desserts were on a separate serving table.  I found an old rusty shelf at a vintage shop that I used to give the table some height.  I added more flowers and books.

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I also stacked 3 cake plates on top of each other for the cupcakes.

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The finishing touch was a pretty girl in a vintage dress and apron to help serve!
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Since the party was back in the garden I wanted people to know which direction to go so I pulled out Daisy and added a sign to her so people knew where the party was!

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The best part of the party?  Was just watching my mom enjoy herself with her friends!

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Happy Birthday Mom – we love you!

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Party Guest:Garden Baby Shower

Today’s party guest is Ashley of Little Miss Momma .

Ashley hosted an amazing  baby shower for a dear friend who was expecting a little boy.  Ashley says that this shower  was an extra fun one to plan for because the guest list was for a dozen lovely ladies {rather than 30}, so she was able to spend some extra time on the details–she even used real plates (a girl after my own heart!)

She chose a “spring time” theme in turquoise, lime green, orange and yellow.

So let me introduce Ashley and have her tell you all about her beautiful baby shower.  Almost makes me want to have another baby (not) but I am stealing some of her ideas for a baby shower I am helping host this summer.

Here’s Ashley:

I chose a “spring time” theme in turquoise, lime green, orange and yellow.

I made these Pom Poms using a tutorial from Leanne at Organize and Decorate Everything. I love them so much–I wish I could leave them up all year round {and maybe I will, lol}.

To stay within the “garden/backyard” theme I bought a 12 pack of mason jars at my local grocery store and used them for cups. I used extra large malt straws purchased from Michael’s.

I made this banner using scrapbook paper and pre-cut letters that come in a pack {also available at Michael’s}. I glue gunned each paper flag down on to a long strand of turquoise ribbon.

Here was my nifty little party favor. I made these earrings using this tutorial.


The theme was “Cute as a Button”.

I glue gunned this trim around vases from the dollar store.

I learned how to make these pinwheels from Gillian at All the Small Things.

I threw some of the pinwheels in with my flower arrangements.

Yummy Spring time cupcakes.

Summer salad with strawberries, mandarin oranges, sliced almonds and a sweet honey vinaigrette dressing.

Homemade chicken salad sandwiches on croissants.

Most of my decorations and favors were used with supplies from the Dollar Tree and the sale section at Michael’s {and I’m not just saying that}. If you want to know where I purchased anything specific leave me a comment over at my blog and I will get back to you.

All in all, one rather awesome baby shower!

Party Guest: Bollywood Bling Party

I am so excited to share this amazing party with you. One of my blog readers, Birdie of Bird Crafts, created this amazing party. She and her husband were celebrating their 6th wedding anniversary and she went all out!

An amazing amount of thought, time and effort went into this event. Birdie lives in the south of France (yes I said France) ans she had  planned to hold outdoors but as Mother Nature has a tendency to do she decided to do her own thing – instead of sunshine she brought a windy and gray day instead,

Birdie was flexible though and set up indoors instead.

Here is Birdie. I’ll let her tell you all about the party.
The hubs is not big on desserts and with the Indian theme, we didn’t want any cakes. Instead, we filled the table with Indian-style sweets – Fit for a Maharajah!! :)

Some of the sweets I made myself, like the blue Indian “truffles” (I made them up..) and the gulab jamun, and shall share the recipes with you in due course. Others more elaborate sweets such as the oriental petit fours below, I bought from our local oriental shop.

I also made mango Laassi, which is kinda of an Indian take on a milk-shake – I was very refreshing and quite thick, with real chunks of mangoes. I served them in little coloured cups I bought at a French version of the pound or dollar shop.
This orange “alien-looking” thing is called Jalebi and it’s an Indian sweet made by dropping swirls of batter into hot oil. It’s coloured with safforn but waaaay tooo complicated to make, so I bought ready-made. It’s very sugary, but stays crispy on the outside and very traditional in Indian dessert tables.
And because this was a family affair, we had conventional sweets (although the colours were quite Bollywood!) for the children. We also provided scoops so they could take some home in the little party boxes and favor bags I designed for the occasion.

In addition to the party favor sweets, I also made some Spicy Mango chutney for the adults – We also had some on the day, so I liked the idea of the guest taking some home to enjoy the party a little longer!

Because we were indoors, I had to display the party food and some of the party décor on small tables which I placed all around the room. By the entrance which leads to our courtyard, I placed a well wishes tree – I say tree…It was a couple of branches I sprayed silver. I then decorated the branches with some small paper flower similar to the coloured paper pom-poms above the desserts table.

The “wishes” were small round cards in the same design of the party theme with a picture of myself and the hubs. Our guests were then encouraged to leave well wishes or “word of wisdom” hehe and hang them on the tree. This makes for nice memento of the day for us…
And more party favors (bangles, papier maché elephant and watercolours for the children, Indian tea personalised with the celebration date, scented candles and soap for the adults) were displayed in clear bags and small kitsch boxes I found at the oriental store for just €1 each! The boxes looked as though they were made for this occasion, in the party colours and even had a blue elephant on them!

These party favors were displayed also by the entrance inside a small wheel-barrow decorated in the colours of the party. A small plaque read “Oriental Delights” to which I attached a silk blue ribbon.

By the wishes tree, I place a “wishing well” with floating candles and rose petals – It looked like an offering to the “gods”….Very Indian! :)

I also used some inexpensive metal photo holders to clip the food plaques. They tied in really well with the “bling” party décor! :)

Oh, one thing I used that made all the difference, were pieces of mirrors (I had those at home, but you can get them cut to your specifications at a DIY shop) as trays and plates to hold the food on the table. This allowed more light to be reflected and looked really stunning with candles on them too – And off course I had to have birds everywhere!! hehe

More candles completed the scene. In fact there were candles everywhere and they really helped to set the party mood and looked fab in the evening!

For the candles holders I used empty glass yoghurt pots, and glued a strip of coloured ribbon around with a big, fat rhinestone in the middle for extra Indian bling. :)
The flowers of choice were bright, pink gerberas in glass carafes filled with coloured sweets. But you could also use coloured sand, pebbles…

Oh, and to complete the party scene I also designed a blue elephant cut-out that I displayed around the tables – It looked so cool and was a talking point with children and adults alike!

That’s all for today folks, hope you’ve enjoyed the tour hehehe.
The complete Bollywood Bling Party Collection is now available at my Etsy shop!
Wasn’t that amazing!! Be sure and visit Birdie over at her blog for more info and recipes.

Ice Cream Social Table Decor

by on June 3, 2010
in Decorations, Table Decor

My friend Dawn is a kindergarten teacher.  She is always doing lots of fun and creative things with her students.

One of their end of the year celebrations is an ice cream social.  Dawn put together these darling table decorations and shared some photos with me.

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Using empty ice cream containers and fresh flowers from her garden she not only carried out the theme but saved a lot of money too.  I love it!

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She just placed jars inside the containers and placed the flowers in the jars.  She also made some mini bouquets with the tiny teeny new single serve
cartons.
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Thanks for sharing your fun table decor idea Dawn!

The Wedding Planner, Part 4

by on June 1, 2010
in Party Food, Weddings

Be sure you have read The Wedding Planner, Part 1, Part 2 and Part 3!

My favorite part of any wedding is, no surprise, the food!

The parents of the bride, Andrea and Mark, really wanted the wedding to reflect Nathan & Emily’s tastes so they let them totally choose the menu.

From the start they knew they wanted to have Key Lime pie instead of cake.  After searching around for a place to order pies from, they ended up enlisting some friends and baking 200 individual pies.  It took them about 3 1/2 hours to make them all and they had to raid quite a few stores for all the crusts that they needed.  They were delicious and a fun treat.

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For the lunch menu, they wanted Mexican.  They chose a local favorite in the Lansing area called EL AZTECO.  They also decided to let the guest eat upon arrival at the reception rather than have them wait for the wedding party to arrive.  This made for very happy guests with tummies filled with delicious Mexican food when the photos were done.

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The food was served buffet style with clear plastic plates from Sam’s Club and plastic silverware that they rolled up into white napkins and tied with twine.  The wedding invitations that Andrea’s daughter,Lauren designed consisted of 5 3×5 cards that were tied together with twine also.

Andrea affectionately calls their wedding style SHABBY CHIC.

They also had a fun candy bar at the reception.

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They chose candy that they liked!  They made it the favor for everyone to take home.  Andrea learned that the tricky part of doing a candy bar is that you need 2-3 times the amount of candy that will actually be taken home or consumed in order to make it look FULL.  A great tip they had was to put small bowls overturned inside some of the big punch bowls that they used to take up space and make it look fuller.

Again, Andrea enlisted help and gave one of her friends the list of all the candy and she bought it all at Sam’s Club and Gordon Food Service in bulk.  They bought little plastic gusseted bags that had white lace printed on them and came with silver twist ties.  They were a little bigger than they wanted people to have so they trimmed them down.  I was surprised how many people loved it!  Even the older people still loved the candy!

This was definitely a wedding full of love and attention to what really matters!  Andrea was able to put together an amazing, not to be forgotten, wedding of her dreams for her daughter while staying within their families budget and not going totally crazy!

Thanks Andrea for sharing your photos and all the great information!!

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