Posts in the ‘Catch My Party’ Category

Our New Thanksgiving Party Page Layout

We've just designed a new Thanksgiving layout to better show off your Thanksgiving celebrations on our site! What do you think?

Also, a new FREE Thanksgiving printables collection will be up on Monday.

And we will be adding a new Christmas layout soon too... so stay tuned!

Tell Us Which is Your Favorite Party and Win a $50 CSN Gift Certificate!

The generous folks at CSN Stores have given us a $50 gift certificate to give away. For those of you who don't know, CSN sells everything for your home, from kitchenware, to hardware, to toys, and to even console tables.

Some of my favorite $50 items...


Cuisinart Power Advantage 7-Speed Hand Mixer


Lenox Dinnerware Botanical Vase


Learning Resources Pretend and Play Teaching Cash Register


Leatherman Fuse/Monarch 200 Combo


Marquis by Waterford Vintage Champagne Flutes (Set of 4)

To enter to win, all you have to do is leave a comment with a link to your favorite party on our site (a party that isn't your own, of course. :)). That's it! We thought we'd make this one easy, plus we're really interested in seeing what you choose.

We'll pick the winner at random on Wednesday, October 27nd at 10:00pm (PDT).  Any entries after that won't be considered, sorry.  This giveaway is open to US and Canadian residents only.  We will use random.org to generate our winner.

NEW FEATURE -- A New "Party Inspiration and Theme" Page (Plus our Top 10 Theme List)!

I'm so excited to announce a new page on our site called party inspirations and themes.

It's just a big list o' themes, but if you click on one, you'll see all the parties on our site with that theme.

Now it should be even easier to find inspiration for your next party. Check it out here!

And if you want to see the top 10 themes on our site for girl birthdays, boy birthdays, grown up birthdays, baby showers, and bridal showers, you can find them listed on our browse parties page right below the search box on the right.

See what's popular and why!

We'd love to hear what you think of our new page -- things you like, things you don't like, or any suggestions you may have.

We're always looking for ways to make our site better, so we really value what you have to say.  Please email me at jillian@catchmyparty.com.

I Had a Photo Shoot

Now that Catch My Party is off and running, I thought it was time I got some half-way-decent photos taken of me. There are so many places I need to add a photo (like our own site), and I never seem to have one I like.

While my husband is wonderful in many ways, he takes the most unflattering photographs.

So enter photographer Tamar Levine.  I met Tamar when she tutored me in Photoshop about a year ago.  She's young, hip (but not too hip), and approachable.

I thought, if I was going to get my picture taken, I needed it be by someone who was going to make me feel comfortable.  And Tamar was just the person.  She was fun, supportive, easy to work with, and she even gave me some important tips on how to look my best in photos ("chin up, chin up").  By the end of the shoot, I felt like such a natural.  I even wondered if I'd missed my calling as a supermodel.

Here are some of the photos she took of me at the photo shoot.  (I love saying photo shoot, by the way.)

While Tamar is best known for her fashion photography, she also loves shooting portrait and engagement photos.

Here are some of her fashion photographs...

And here are some of her gorgeous wedding and engagement photos...

She will be shooting my daughter's next birthday, so be on the look out for that in March.

And if you live in Los Angeles and are looking for a creative, down-to-earth photographer, who takes beautiful photos, and might make you (delusionally) think you could be a supermodel, Tamar Levine is your woman.

TRENDS: Summer Parties on Catch My Party

As summer winds down, I thought it would be fun to revisit some of our most memorable beach and pool parties of the year.  Enjoy!

Lindsey M's Girly Gecko Birthday Party

Lisa R's Carnival Party

Sarah Y's Popsicle Party

Katie I's Flip Flop Fabulous Party

Christina C's Splish Splash Party

Maureen A's Blue and Green Pool Party

Jen C's Brinley's 2nd Birthday

Lisa R's Hannah's Flip-Flopped Party

Claudia S's Surf's Up Party

Tonya B's Splish Splash Soiree

Hope you've had a wonderful summer!

Cakes on Catch My Party

I thought I'd post a few of the amazing cakes we've seen on our site.  Take a look at these...

From Kristy L's Alexa Cate's 2nd Birthday Party

From Anne P's Milk & Cookies Party

From Laura L's Chanel Inspired Bridal Shower

From Meredith E's Welcome Lainey Jayne Baby Shower

From Kate P's Bailey's Farm Party

And more to come...

Our Le Creuset Giveaway Winner... Ann Marie B.

The winner of our Le Creuset dish giveaway is...

Ann Marie B. who is a friend on Facebook.  Congrats, Ann Marie!

And thank you to everyone who entered our first giveaway!

PARTY PHOTO OF THE WEEK (and How to take Great Shots)

There are some beautiful, touching, funny photos on our site, so I'm starting a new feature where I highlight my favorite party photo of the week.

This week, that honor goes to this photo from

Joanne W's Tate's Bug Bash.

I love Tate's expression juxtaposed with the festive party table.  Brilliant!

HOW TO TAKE GREAT PARTY PHOTOS

As I've been thinking about photography (and trying to become a better photographer myself), I checked into what some of the experts had to say about how to take great shots.  Here are some tips for all you photographers out there:

Tip 1:  Get down to your subject's level, especially if you're shooting kids.

Tip 2: Pick a plain background for your subject to makes it pop.  (And make sure there are no trees sticking out their heads.)

Tip 3: Move in close and fill your picture with your subject.

Tip 4: Even outdoors, use your flash.  On bright days it will fill in shadows, and on cloudy days it will brighten things up.

Tip 5: Know your flash's range (for many cameras it's about 10 feet).  This way you don't end up with dark pictures.

Tip 6: Turn your camera sideways and take some vertical shots.

Tip 7: Place your subject off-center.  Imagine a tic-tac-toe grid and place your subject at one of the intersections of lines.

Tip 8:  Lock the focus on your camera to take pictures of off-center subjects.  That way your subjects won't be blurry.

Tip 9: Watch the light.  For pictures of people, cloudy days are the best.  On sunny days, pay attention to shadows.

Tip 10:  If you're taking a group shot, aim the center of the camera at someone's chest. That way, the heads appear in the upper third of the photo, and you've filled the photo with people rather than background.

Tip 11: Be a director and get creative.  Add props, use different angles, take a ton of different shots (to increase your chance of getting that one "great" photo), and have fun!

I hope these are helpful.  I'm going to start using them and I'll report back.

Sources: Kodak and weschan.com

Please Give Us Feedback

Our goal at Catch My Party is to make our site as easy-to-use, relevant, fun, and helpful as we can.

If you have any ideas for new features, ways to improve the site, gripes, grievances, or even compliments, please let us know.

On the right hand side of each of our pages is our little "feedback" button.  Please feel free to use it, or you can always email me at jillian@catchmyparty.com.


Our feedback button

We enjoy hearing from you and we'll answer you back!

TRENDS: July 4th Parties on Catch My Party

Here are some of my favorite design elements from the July 4th parties we've seen on our site.

From Lindsey M's Little Firecracker's 4th of July Riverside Soiree

This party is all about the gorgeous sweets and the beautiful party printables.  Lindsey and her partner design the printables themselves at Paper and Pigtails.

Some of my favorite things: the delicious confetti cupcakes, the hand-dipped marshmallows, and the lemonade bottles and straws.  The whole party has such a festive spirit.  It puts me in a good mood.

Daphne J's 4th of July Backyard Bash

What's great about this traditional BBQ is how it's taken to a whole new level by adding all these gorgeous printables.  The printables are designed by Daphne and are available in her store Moo Moo's & Tutus.

Notice how the hamburgers, and even the straws, become something to celebrate when they're given a little decoration.

Molly E's Celebrate Our Independence!

This is a sumptuous party.  The flowers, food, and decor make it seem rich and beautiful.  I want to eat everything: the sliders, the corn, and those fabulous parfait and tart desserts.

And to finish it off, the favors are sweet and simple -- red, white, and blue candies in little jars.  They look elegant and give the table punch.  It's true, sometimes less is more.

Staci G's Old Fashion 4th

This party has "kid" written all over it.  My favorite details: the red, white, and blue robot and the painted coffee filter decorations.  What a great way for a mom to come up with arts and crafts projects for her kids that she can then use for a family celebration.

And how fun are the firecracker cookies with sprinkles and pop rocks?  Nice touch.

Claudia S's Red, White, and Blue Ladybug Party

Great idea for this party -- a July 4th "slash"ladybug birthday party for a seven-year-old.

Again, custom decorations is where it's at this July 4th.  Claudia and her partner designed these.  You can find more at Tini Posh.

My favorite thing about this party is how both themes are incorporated.  Check out the red, white, and blue cupcake toppers with ladies bugs, stars, and photos of the birthday girl on them.  Combining themes does bring something new and exciting to your party.   Definitely try it.

It's so much fun seeing all your great ideas.  Thanks for sharing!

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