Sunday, March 18, 2012

{My Parties} Greyson's Skippyjon Jones Birthday Four-esta Party

When I started planning my Greyson's Fourth Birthday, I knew that I wanted to have Mexican food. Mexican is his very favorite food in all the world (just like his Daddy), but I knew that I didn't want to do a general fiesta party. So, that's when the idea hit me to do a Skippyjon Jones party! Skippyjon Jones is a series of books that Greyson received as a gift from my sister a few years ago. 
The premise of the books is that Skippyjon is a Siamese cat who thinks he is a Chihuahua superhero. His imagination takes him on all kinds of adventures and the first book in the series is about his journey to Mexico to meet his band of Chihuahua friends, the Chimichangos. 

So, once I had this idea in mind, I contacted my dear friends Do and J at Piggy Bank Parties to help me with the invitation. 
There are not any Skippyjon Jones party items on the market, so we had to start from scratch on everything. Do and J, AS USUAL, took my vision and completely expounded on it. They created this gorgeous invitation with the graphic of a pueblo, and Skippyjon's back in the foreground. They also created an entire collection for me, which you will see displayed in these pictures. 
As you can see, instead of gifts, we asked that our guests donate toys or monetary donations to LeBonheur Children's Hospital. Greyson is a patient there, so we felt like it was the least we could do. And, if your kids are like mine, they have more toys than they know what to do with.
I also knew that I HAD to have Natalie at The Knock Knock Factory to make me one of her outrageous door hangings. And I mean, come ON. How great is this? I wish I could get over to you the level of detail on this thing. It is amazing. There is a full on FOUNTAIN in the middle of it! And a taco, and a mission bell, and a sombrero! I couldn't bear to put it away, so it is hanging on Grey's closet door in his room. And it will stay there for a long time. It's so happy!
Natalie has mad skillz.
Now, everyone knows that I like to make a statement for my guests when they enter my house. Last year it was a 9 feet tall hamburger...this year, a giant Skippjon with a sombrero and maracas.
I hand painted all of them onto science fair backdrops, which I cut into the shapes that I needed. See? That Art degree DOES come in handy sometimes, EVERYONE.
Here is a pic of Grey standing under it, so you can see the scale of it.
I always hang these large pieces using floral wire and command strips. Command Strips are pretty much the best thing to happen to event planners in years.
I also had authentic Papel Picados hanging around the house.
Piggy Bank Parties also did gorgeous printables for me. For the little ones, we had juice boxes wrapped with cute slogans.
And, since there were a lot of adults at the party, we did beer and margaritas. It was pretty fun to see our moms drinking margaritas at noon.

And, what else do you eat at a Fiesta but TACOS?
My baby loves tacos, so that was a given. 
So, I did a build-your-own taco bar. 
Pin It The backdrop was painstaking, but I love how it turned out. I wanted it to be like a giant pinata. So,  hundreds of pieces of tissue paper later and one worn out scissor-hand, it was gorgeous.
I had this brainstorm one day that I wanted to display the taco shells in a creative way. So, I thought, hmmmm, taco shells kind of look like bunting if you turn them upside down! I consulted with my party-guru friend, Kristy--The Purple Pug, and she said she didn't think I was smoking too much crack for this! So, I went with it!  I am pretty sure I confused everyone though. I caught my grandpa looking for taco shells and had to tell him that it was okay to eat those!
I am slightly obsessed with these printables and how they look like little Pueblo houses!





And Skippyjon made an appearance, of course!

Pin It For the dessert table, I wanted to keep it loose and make it feel more like a Mexican restaurant than a perfect display of cupcakes. 
So, I decided to use sombreros as a cupcake stand!
Piggy Bank did this gorgeous Papel Picado-inspired banner. The colors were so brilliant! I love it!

I made the cupcake stand using my old faithful Wilton cupcake stand. Did you know that you can spray-paint them? Well, neither did I until I tried it!
I cut the top out of the bottom sombrero and that allowed me to stack the cupcake stand together.
The UNBELIEVABLE toppers are by Lynlee's Petite Cakes. I mean, could you die? The cactus was my favorite. It was even prickled!! Lynlee is amazing. I mean, there is no other word for it. Sick talent. 
Cute little Skippyjon!



The favors were displayed in a unique way too. In the books, Skippyjon imagines all his adventures while he is in his closet! So, I wanted to put the favors in his "closet." So, I painted this box and hinged it open to make it look like a door. 

Then, on the inside, I painted a desert scene and displayed the pops in some foam that I covered in sand patterned scrapbook paper.
Could you die over these Skippyjon pops from Whimsical Boutique? I won these in a giveaway that Purple Pug had and Leanna absolutely killed it. They were so precious that I cannot even stand it. And those favor tags from the printable set were pretty awesome too.
For Greyson's special birthday spot, Purple Pug made me this fabulous little banner using her new product line. I was honored that she let me be one of the first recipients of this fabulous new stuff! It's so gorgeous up close--glittered of course!  And how great does the fringe go with the backdrop?
And of course, a few pics of my sweet boy.


You like my sombrero fascinator?
Muchas Gracias Amigos! Hope you liked the Skippyjon Jones party!
Major thank yous to Crystal Brisco Photography for shooting these gorgeous pictures. She is wonderfully sweet and did an amazing job!


Vendors:

Cupcakes: Mad Lily Cakery
Fondant Toppers: Lynlee's Petite Cakes
Invitation and Printables: Piggy Bank Parties
Custom Greyson Banner: The Purple Pug
All Styling: GreyGrey Designs

Sunday, March 4, 2012

{My Parties} Boy Meets World Baby Shower

This party is probably one of my favorite parties ever. 
I had so much fun with this theme and I can't wait to share it with you.
Candace, the hostess, came to me a few months ago with a theme already in mind. I immediately loved this idea and my first thought was the wonderful Eleanor at Pink Peppermint Paper who had executed this theme so beautifully at a Sip and See. You can see her interpretation here. 
So, I told Eleanor that I would be ripping her off in the coming months! 

My vision for this theme centered on all things MAP. I love the colors of maps and particularly vintage maps. My grandmother was a history and geography teacher. She used to have a "thing" about map-folding and how to do it correctly, and she would make all of us grandchildren go to "Charlotte's Map-Folding School."
So, for me, this party is a tribute to her. 

I started with the color scheme, which was derived from the beautiful sage greens, aquas, and tans of maps. From there, I knew that I wanted to do an "old world meets chic" theme. 



I knew that the fabulous Gwynn Wasson could definitely execute this theme for me, so I contacted her almost immediately to help me with the printables. 
She designed this gorgeous invitation for us, concentrating on travel and the vintage feel of old suitcases. 

Candace wanted to have a time capsule for baby Maxwell to have as a keepsake of the year he was born. So, we asked all the guests to bring something for him that represented 2012. The guests put all their items in this suitcase for Allonda to take home and keep. 
I loved the look of the wreath that Eleanor did for her Boy Meets World party, so I used the same idea on mine. I used two layers of folded maps and then put baby Max's name on the front, using chipboard letters that I spray-painted to match the theme. 
Piggy Bank Parties were the perfect people to call on when I needed a favor box!
And, while I was expecting a simple suitcase, Do and J, OF COURSE, blew it out of the BOX. The tiny suitcases even had the baby's name on them!!!  I pretty much squealed out loud when I saw them. 
To top them off, Gwynn made these gorgeous favor tags to look like luggage tags. 

Candace had sent me some pictures of some small bottles with flowers inside them that she loved. I found these green and blue bottles at the antique mall and I knew they would be perfect. I made these map flowers by hand and glued them to a pipe cleaner to make them stand in the bottles. 


Inside the favor boxes were something very special--plantable seed papers in the shape of Earth!
I ordered these from the seller DaVita on Etsy. Candace loved the idea of the guests being able to take home something green and sustainable and something that really kept the theme of the shower. 
Inside were instructions to plant the papers and have beautiful flowers come up in 6 weeks!



In the living room, Candace cleared out all the existing furniture and we brought in rental tables and linens.  This kept the flow cohesive and really allowed guests to sit and enjoy themselves while watching Allonda open gifts. 

Behind the area where the gift opening was happening, I hung a banner from Gwynn that said "Max Meets World."
The "flowers" are made from coffee filters and some blue food coloring. 
For the centerpieces, I used two different containers. Two containers were small hatboxes wrapped in aqua yarn and filled with these gorgeous hydrangeas. 

And the other two containers were small chipboard boxes, modge-podged with maps. 

For the beverage station, Candace wanted to have a signature drink for everyone. After several ideas for drink names, we settled on the "Maxipolitan." Candace used her mother's stemware for the party and we put a little drink flag from Gwynn on each one. 




While I was researching the event, I came across an invitation with this Thoreau quote. 
I thought it was the perfect quote to use as a backdrop for the party. So, in order to incorporate it into the party, I hand-painted it onto the backdrop of burlap. This is a super easy project that anyone could do. I simply printed the words out as large as I could using Word, and then cut them out of the paper to make myself a stencil. It is time-consuming, but totally worth it. 
I found this adorable little stand at the antique mall and it was already painted the perfect shade of aqua. 
It was really perfect to hold the cupcakes!
Gywnn designed us these beautiful cupcake wraps and party circles to add to the cupcakes from Mad Lily Cakery. 
The little baby silhouette in the suitcase is my favorite!

The map flowers were made using a few different techniques. The large ones are simply large leaf pieces cut out of a vintage atlas and then glued onto a cardboard cake plate. Then, I embellished the middles with some fringed pieces and rolled up some tubes to make the stamens. 
The more architectural flowers are actually from a tutorial I found online. You can see it here
The fluffy flowers are coffee filters, as mentioned above. I simply spritzed some of the coffee filters with blue food coloring and water and let them dry. Then, I positioned them around a pipe cleaner. It's so easy!

For the menu, Candace really wanted a global cuisine. So, I brainstormed some ideas of food from specific regions in the world. 
We had Greek Cucumber Salad...
Hawaiian Bacon Wrapped Pineapple...
This dessert stand cost me $2. That is a plate and a cup from Tuesday Morning that I glued together. 

Indian Samosas...
Mexican Seven Layer Dips in individual portions...
And Chinese Egg Rolls...
For the letters, I simple modgepodged them with vintage maps.
One vintage atlas went a LONG way with this party!
I wanted the table presentation to be loose and flowing, so I made sure the blue runner was very puddled and sort of draped off the table.


Congratulations to Allonda!  Isn't she gorgeous?
I am sure Maxwell will be a beautiful little world traveler.
And major thanks to my client Candace, for being so wonderful to work with! 


Vendors:

Favor Boxes: Piggy Bank Parties
Cupcakes: Mad Lily Cakery
All Styling, papercraft, photography: GreyGrey Designs
Plantable Seed Favors: DaVita
Rentals: Affordable Party Rentals

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