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Posts Tagged ‘parties’

I receive lots and lots of trade magazines.  Of course, in those magazines I find many things that inspire me.  This week, I was looking through one particular magazine and came across this advertisement for a company called Fancy Faces from Covington, LA.  Because I was so taken by the tablescape in their ad, that it is the focus of my favorite things this week.

I am in LOVE with this monochromatic design.  The yellows are so pretty and contemporary.  I think what makes this design work so well is the different textures that they used giving the eye something exciting to look at.  The lemons in the tall vases are really cool and add vertical color to the design.  I also love the simplicity of the roses, with no greenery, in the lower vases.  The butterflies add a whimsical touch but don’t overwhelm the design with “cuteness”.  The paper lanterns help bring the color all the way to the ceiling and add some fun to the overall look.  The linens are very simple probably using the venue’s white tablecloths.  Buy adding the yellow runner and simply draping the napkins down the side of the table, it adds contemporary drama without a lot of extra money.  I think I will have to go visit their website to see what other inspiring designs they have.

Happy Planning!

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Happy New Year to all of you!  Out with 2009 and in with 2010.  It’s so hard to believe another year has passed by so quickly.  Heck, wasn’t it just 1999 and the world was going to come crashing to an end because of Y2K??  🙂  I guess it didn’t and here we are already 10 years later.

Seriously though, have you started on those resolutions yet?  For me, it’s the usual set…..lose weight, exercise more, eat better, blah, blah, blah….LOL!  Maybe that new Wii and Wii Fit Plus we got the family for Christmas will help with those goals.  However, I think I will simply try to keep my resolutions small and simple.  In addition to those listed above, taking a little more time for fun and appreciating the little things in life a bit more are being added to the list.  Also, perhaps posting a bit more on my blog will be top of the list (I know, I was TERRIBLE in December and didn’t post a thing).

Another thing to look forward to in the year to come are some changes to the look of my website.  Nothing too drastic, just updating and “polishing” a bit.  I’ll keep you posted on those.  I’m finally starting to get back professional pictures from my Fall weddings and events so I will be sharing those here in the days to come.

So please, everyone have a very happy, safe, and prosperous 2010!

Karen 🙂

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Yesterday, I had the extreme privilege of being part of something very special, Suzie’s Bat Mitzvah.   I have been helping Suzie and her parents, Brian and Sheri, plan this for over a year.  However, Suzie has been preparing for this day for many years with lots of hard work and studying at Hebrew School.  Having not been raised in the Jewish faith, I was absolutely amazed at what these children go through, not only in preparing for this day, but also how much they are responsible for during the 2-hour service.  Suzie did an amazing job during the service, especially with her Torah portion.  Her family was very proud of her, and I will admit, I was too!  Suzie, congratulations and thank you to you and your parents for letting me be a part of this very important day in your life.

Later in the evening, Suzie’s hard work was rewarded with a really fun and fabulous reception at Granite Bay Golf Club.  Since she is into musicals and drama, she decided that would be the theme for her party.  The color scheme was taken from the burgandy color of theater curtains and the gold color of stars, since she was the “star” of this show.  Granite Bay Golf Club has these really cool metal rafters that just scream, hang something from me :).  So, I did!  I hung close to 50 gold colored stars from thin, clear fishing line to help emphasize our theme.  In addition, Brandi from Party Petals made the fabulous centerpieces and added those cute gold stars for a whimsical look to go with our “star of the show” theme.  I then sprinkled gold star confetti around those.  The tables were all named after musicals and plays, most of which Suzie has acted in.  The kids all sat at one very big U-shaped head table while the adults sat at smaller, more intimate rounds.  For the cake, MaryAnn from Baker’s Delight make an adorable Torah shaped cake but with Suzie’s favorite color, pink.

Once the evening got started, Patrick and his crew from Dennon and Doyle Entertainment ROCKED!  They made the reception so much fun for not only Suzie and her friends, but for the adults too.  Their enthusiasm and energy had everyone out on the dance floor and there was never a moment when that energy dropped. 

I will leave you with some photos that I took, however, once I get the professional ones back from Steven Stafford (the photographer) I will be certain to share them.  I know that he took some amazing shots so I’m excited to see those!

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When numbering your reception tables, why settle for the same old number “tent” card?  A little creativity can add a really great personal touch to each of your tables.  A fun idea to consider, during your engagement photo session, having the photographer take pictures of you and your fiancé holding up wooden numbers (1 through however many tables you have).  Then frame each of these pictures and place the frame on the table.  Much more fun and creative than the boring old tent card.

Another personal touch is to add pictures of you and your fiancé that correspond to the table number.  For example, on table number 1, place an assortment of pictures of you and your fiance at age one.  Table number two…..two year old pictures, and so on and so forth.  That will really get your guests talking and even serve as an “ice breaker” for tables mates who don’t know each other quite so well.

My most recent couple decided to name their tables instead of numbering them.  They chose places and things that held huge signficance in their lives.  For example, in this picture below, the table is named the Forest Hill Bridge.  This is where the groom proposed to the bride.

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Along the table name line, one of my clients is celebrating her Bat Mitvah next month.  The theme for the reception is theater since she is very into plays and musicals.  So for the table names, we are using the names of her favorite plays and musicals, many of which she has acted in.  Each name is being printed out to look like the front of a playbill and will be placed in frames on the tables.

If your budget is tight, consider incorporating your table numbers into your centerpieces.  Think of something like those little white trees you see at Easter time (all branches no leaves) and hanging little numbers from the branches.  You could easily cut the numbers from cardstock and then add some embossing powder or glitter to them.  A ribbon hanger in your wedding colors adds the perfect touch.  Sprinkle some rose petals around the table and add votive candles for a finished and elegant look that doesn’t break the bank.

Just remember, don’t settle for the “same old, same old” when it comes to numbering your tables.  A little creativity can really make your wedding stand out from the rest!

Happy Planning!

Karen

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While sifting through the pile of magazines in Kaiser’s waiting room this week, I came across the latested issue of Better Homes and Garden.  My eyes were immediately drawn to the fabulous and really cool centerpiece on the front cover:

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 Here is the URL in for a more close-up picture (I could only get the picture to post so big on my blog): http://www.bhg-digital.com/bhg/200910#pg1

I just LOVE the colors in this centerpiece.  It’s that tangerine orange and lime green color combination that I’m so drawn to.  Yet, it’s done in a somewhat understated way to make it fit perfectly for a Fall theme.  And all those different textures really add visual interest.  These centerpieces would make a HUGE statement for very little impact to your budget.  I really see something like this working perfectly on long banquet tables (several all lined up down the middle of the table).

How perfect would something like this look for a Fall wedding or party?! 

Happy Planning!

Karen

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A fun way to kick off your wedding reception is by offering your guests a signature cocktail.  A grouping of the same beverage looks amazing when passed butler style by the wait staff on a tray.  It also adds a formal and elegant feel to your reception. 

How do you choose your signature cocktail?  First think of something that might be a favorite of yours, or has special meaning (like a drink you and your significant other had on your first date).   Or it might be more fun to make a drink that coordinates with your wedding colors or theme.  Another idea is to serve a signature cocktail that fits your venue….margaritas or mai tais for the beach, martinis or cosmopolitans for the ultra-urban sheik venue, etc.  Use your imagination and have fun with it!

The other thing that signature cocktails can do is cut your bar costs.  My clients are always shocked and amazed at just how much money a fully-hosted bar is.  It can add up to the same costs as your food!  However, it is very distasteful to have a no-host bar at your reception.  You wouldn’t charge your guests to have a beer at your backyard BBQ now would you?  The same goes for your wedding reception.  By offering a signature cocktail during the cocktail hour, along with beer and wine, then going to a beer and wine only bar for the remainder of the reception, you can significantly reduce your bar costs.  Another option is to simply offer only the signature cocktail at during the cocktail hour (along with non-alcoholic options) and then no more alcohol after that.  Some worry that guests will be offended if they can’t order up their favorite cocktail from the bar.  My answer to that is…..this is your party, and you decide what is being served.  If they so desperately need that special drink, they can visit a bar on the way home :). 

Seriously though, a signature cocktail can add a layer of fun and sophistication to your reception causing most guests to not even miss that full bar.

Happy Planning!

Karen

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It seems every where you look or listen, the health of our planet’s environment is being discussed.  Global warming, depleted resources, deforestation are all big problems.  More and more, clients are asking me how their weddings or events can be more eco-friendly.  Believe it or not, there are actually many very simple ways, that will often save you money or, at the very least, not cost you any more than what your current plans might be.  You do not need to do things like buy “carbon credits” to offset the impact of your wedding (or at least buy off your guilt :)).  There are many simple and more practical plans that you can make to have a much more green and eco-friendly wedding.

First, try to eliminate as much waste as possible.  Consider using real china, flatware, and glassware instead of disposable versions.  If you book at an all-inclusive venue, these things are usually included in the price.  Most caterers will also provide these items.  You can also rent these items for very little cost.  Using cloth instead of paper linens (tablecloths and napkins) seriously reduces the amount of waste you will have from your reception.  Again, most all-inclusive venues and caterers offer these and, if they don’t, linens can also be rented.

Another thing to consider is the impact that all of those guests driving to your wedding will have on our air quality.  The easiest way to handle this is to choose a location that is close to the majority of your guests.  The closer the location, the less driving they will have to do.  Not only do your guests greatly appreciate this gesture, but it will reduce the amount of carbon emissions that your guests’ vehicles will be producing.

Working with a venue or caterer who uses local, in season foods is another great way to be more green.  Food that has to be brought in from far away places by plane or long-haul truck does have an impact on our environment.  Local and in season foods can also reduce your wedding food costs.  This past winter, I did a little personal experiment with my own family’s grocery buying habits and found some very positive results.  I decided, especially with produce, to focus on only buying in season, more locally grown foods.  That meant eating more citrus fruit grown in the USA and less grapes (which I do so love) grown in Chile.  This did result in lower grocery bills for my family of 5 (and believe me, my kids can eat).  The impact on the environment may have been minimal from my efforts but if more and more consumers did what I did, we would have less produce flown in, hence, less carbon emissions.  Now that it is summer time, I will say that I am looking very forward to California grapes coming to my produce section very soon :)). 

The same can go for another big piece of your wedding or event….the florals.  Chosing in season flowers ensures not only reduces the environmental impact of your wedding but it also saves you money!  Find a florist or floral designer who works with local farmers.  Consider borrowing the florist’s vases instead of purchasing them yourself (trust me, you really won’t use 20 matching vases again).  Along those same lines, consider borrowing or renting things like votive candle holders, arches, and other decor items that you will only use once.  Many venues already have these items available for you to use.

Other ways to eliminate waste at your wedding are not having favors and reducing the size and amount of your printed materials (invitations, save-the-dates, programs).  Really, no one wants a CD of “your favorite songs” or a framed picture of you.  Consider making a donation to a charity or environmental cause, in honor of your guests instead.  The amount of paper that goes into all the wedding stationary can be enormous.  First, most weddings do not require save-the-date cards (read my previous blog entry regarding that).  Using inner and outer envelopes for your invitations is really not necessary anymore and only increases waste.  Consider using an invitation that allows you to put both ceremony and reception details on one piece instead of two.  For your RSVP’s, consider using a postcard instead of an enclosure with an envelope.  Finally, consider not even having programs.  Most people do not read them and will most likely leave them in their seats after they leave the ceremony.  Not only will these steps save trees, but they will save you money.

Of course, recyling is a very eco-friendly thing that you can do to reduce your event’s environmental impact.  Ask your venue if they recyle things like bottles and cans from the bar.

There are so many other ways to make your wedding or event more friendly to planet Earth.  It really is simple and not only helps to save our planet, but saves you money too.  I would love to hear other ways that you have found to make your special day green, so please post comments if you have any.

Happy Planning!

Karen

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