TRENDS: Bug Themed Parties on Catch My Party

by Jillian Leslie on

We've gotten some great bug parties on our site.

The great thing about a bug party is that it's a pretty open-ended theme so there's lots of room for creativity, plus it's got just enough squeamishness to make things interesting.

Take a look at these parties and see how fun bugs can be.

Joanne W's Tate's Bug Bash

Eleanor T's Bug Out Birthday

Jennifer K's Bug Birthday Party

DESSERTS: The Most Incredible Tea Sets You've Ever Seen

by Jillian Leslie on

I'm starting a new desserts feature where I highlight an insanely great dessert on our site.  The first dessert I'm featuring is from

Nicole W's Under the Sea Tea Party

When I saw these cupcakes with their handmade tea sets on them I almost died.  And yes, the tea sets are all individually hand sculpted (out of gumpaste) and hand painted by Nicole.

I was so excited about the cupcakes and tea pot I had to contact Nicole (who is not a professional cake designer, by the way) to ask her how she did this incredible work.  Here's what she said:

Once I had the vision for the tower of cupcakes topped with a teapot cake, I have to admit, I coached my daughter toward that theme.  Happily, it was a theme she really liked, anyway!

I spent a good chunk of one day forming the basic shapes of the tea sets out of gumpaste.  Four hours?  Five perhaps?  I tend to lose track of time when I dive into a project like this, but I know it took quite a while!

The basic shapes are really very easy, it's a lot like being back in preschool playing with play-dough.  ;-)  I used the "wrong" end of cake decorating tips to cut out the circles for the plates and the miniature cake plates.

The end of a Sharpie pressed into the center of the plates made the perfect indentation.  The teacups were the hardest to come up with a satisfying technique.  I tried empty cups, but they all looked like the mug I'd made my mother when I was three.

Eventually, I just made gumpaste balls, flattened and flared and squished one side to make a flared teacup shape, then used a very sharp knife to score a circle where the "tea" should be.

They looked good after I formed the tea sets, but they really came to life when I hand-painted them the next day.

Again, it was hours of labor.  I used the tiniest, thinnest paintbrush I could find in the craft store--and when doing detail work like this, having a quality brush makes a big difference!

My "paint" was Americolor gel food coloring thinned with vodka.  The gold on the rims was gold luster dust mixed with vodka and painted on.

The cupcakes were all our favorite chocolate cake recipe.  It's an old depression era recipe called Crazy Cake (also Wacky Cake and a couple other names).

It doesn't have any eggs, butter, or milk in the recipe, but it's so moist and deliciously chocolatey, and easier than a box mix!  The teapot cake was vanilla, just in case a guest wasn't a fan of chocolate.

The teapot cake was pretty simple.  I used a Wilton Sports Ball pan to make the round shape, and baked off a little of the batter in a custard dish to get the small disk of cake for the lid.

The handle and spout were the only non-edible part of the cake, and were made with a lightweight foam-like modeling clay product that Crayola makes, available in any major craft store with all the other crayola stuff.

It's lightweight enough that there's no problem with the spout slowly obeying gravity and destroying the cake; that's sometimes a problem if you make the spout and handle out of fondant or gumpaste.

Add a few fondant flowers, gumpaste pearl strings, and aerosol luster dust, and you have a teapot!

Thank you, Nicole, for sharing with us how you did all this!  Every time I look at the photos I'm still so blown away.

To learn more about Nicole, check out her blog, Tradewind Tiaras.  And to see more of her gorgeous cakes and parties, check out her Strawberry Picnic 1st Birthday and her Rainbow Unicorn 5th Birthday on our site.

DIY Tutorial From a Catch My Party User -- How to Make a Tool Belt Party Favor

by Jillian Leslie on

Christine from Following Phubie made these adorable tool belts for all her guests at her her son  Camden's  Under Construction Birthday Party.

I asked Christine if she would share how she made them, so she put together this fabulous tutorial for us.  Thank you, Christine!

So here's what Christine had to say...

For Camden's construction theme birthday party, I made tool belts with 3 compartments to hold pretend hammers, wrenches, and pliers. They're not just great for carrying tools. The kids use them to lug Legos, crayons, and little cars.

To construct a tool belt for your little builder, all you'll need is some fabric and ribbon.
  1. Cut fabric into two 13 3/4" W x 14 3/4" H pieces.
  2. Cut two 18" long pieces of ribbon.
  3. Pin ribbon 3/4" from the top edge of the left and right sides of the printed fabric.
  4. Place the solid fabric, front side down, over the printed fabric, and then pin together.
  5. Sew along the edges using a 1/4" seam allowance. Be sure to sew over the ribbon at least twice and leave about a 4" gap at the top.
  6. Turn the fabric inside out.
  7. With the solid side facing up, fold the bottom over until it's 3 1/4" from the top.
  8. To make the different compartments, sew along the left and right edges. Then sew another line down the middle and one 3 1/8" from the right.
  9. Finally, hand stitch the opening along the top.
Wow, Christine, what a great project.  I love how the final result is both cute and functional.    Thank you again for sharing this.

To learn more about Christine and to get more of her party inspirations, check out her blog, Following Phubie.  And you must take a look at the Mad Science Birthday Party she threw for her daughter.   It's inspiring.

TRENDS: "Back to School" Parties on Catch My Party

by Jillian Leslie on

It's definitely that time of year again when summer winds down, and everyone starts back to school.

To get you in the mood, here are some of the great "back to school" parties we recently seen on our site.  I don't know about you, but it makes me want to buy a new pack of pencils.

Staci G's Back to School Bash

Rachael L's Back to School Carnival

Kate P's Art Party

Dawn S's Back to School Bash

Destini H's 1st Day of School

Back to School Cookies

by Jillian Leslie on

I saw these back to school cookies Kate from Grin and Bake It created, and thought they were so cute and clever I had to repost.

If you want to try your hand at baking them, Kate has put together a really easy tutorial.

Also, if you've thrown (or are planning to throw) a back to school party please add it to our site.  I'm putting together a TRENDS blog post on them and would love to include yours.

TRENDS: Milk on Catch My Party

by Jillian Leslie on

Milk... how simple.

It's also a great party design element.  If you're having a dessert table, a cereal bar, or just a big cake, what better drink is there?

Take a look at how people on our site have used milk to add something different their parties.

Kristy's Cereal Bar Buffet

Put some "blinged" out labels on traditional milk and you've got something festive and fun for a cereal party.

Chris N's Baby Girl Sip & See

Strawberry milk shots topped with a cookie.  A sweet little treat for a baby shower.

Kate V's Choo Choo Train Party

Vintage bottles and vintage straws at this train party.

Kristy's Griffin's Monster Jam Dirtfest 7th

The guests choose the flavor milk, then fill up their bottles using "oil" funnels at this truck party.

Sharnel D's Chocolate and Turquoise Birthday Party

Chocolate milk on a chocolate-themed dessert table.  Why, of course.

Leanne A's Indi's 1st Birthday Bunny Party

Vintage bottles of strawberry milk on this lovely dessert table, and on the straws, sweet little decorative flags.   Adorable.

DIY Tutorial From a Catch My Party Member -- How to Make Crepe Paper Rose Pomanders

by Jillian Leslie on

When I saw these gorgeous crepe paper pomanders Brittany from Grey Grey Designs made for her Diamonds and Damask Engagement Party, I fell in love.

What a great way to make a statement at a party.  And the best part is, they're something new.  You might have seen pomanders made with real flowers, but I bet not like this!

So I asked Brittany if she would do a tutorial on how she made them, and she so graciously said yes.  Our lucky day!

Here are all the details, as told by Brittany...

Recently, I was looking for an alternative to your run-of-the-mill tissue paper flowers for an engagement party that I was designing. I ran across some beautiful crepe paper rose pomanders from Danielle at Homespun with Heart .

So, I decided that I would try these instead, but I wanted to put my own twist on them by using party crepe paper and tying them with wide ribbon.

So today, I am sharing them with you! Beware, these are totally time-consuming, but also totally worth it!

Supplies:

  • Styrofoam balls of assorted sizes.  In this case, I used two 5” and one 6”.
  • Crepe paper in the colors of your choice, roughly 4 large rolls for this project
  • Hot glue gun and sticks
  • Wide wired ribbon (2 rolls)
  • Floral pins

1. Take crepe paper and measure out lengths around 20” each

2. Fold strips of crepe paper in half lengthwise.  This will make the crepe paper longer as you do it.

3. Hold the end of the folded crepe paper around your pinkie finger.

4. Wrap crepe paper around your pinkie a few times to secure. 5. Continue to wrap around your pinkie, folding over as you do.  This creates the “petal” look.  PS, I really need a manicure.

6. Be sure to wrap pretty tightly, otherwise, the “rose” will unwrap. 7. Secure the end of the rose with hot glue.  It only takes a touch.  And be careful with the hot glue, I burned myself, oh, roughly 500 times while doing these.

8. Once the rose is finished, glue the rose to the Styrofoam ball.

9. Repeat this 1 billion times, until you fully cover the ball in roses.

10. I recommend cutting or tearing the crepe paper as you go, since you don’t know how many strips you will need upfront.  Plus, once you start on this project, you can pretty much eyeball the lengths that you need. 11. Dry overnight preferably. 12. Wrap the completed ball in the ribbon and tie off at the top. Cut to the length desired to hang.

13. Secure the top and bottom of the ribbon by inserting floral pins directly into the balls. This will secure that the ribbon does not slide off the pomander.

14. Hang with ribbon! And voila, you have created a rose pomander that will never wilt, and saved you hundreds! I spent $24 on this entire project, so this is completely cost-effective and a great addition to your next party, or even a little girl’s room!

These pomanders are beautiful!  Thank you, Brittany, for the wonderful tutorial.

To learn about Brittany and read more of her party tips and ideas, check out her event company, Grey Grey Designs.  Plus, you can see more of her parties here at Catch My Party.  Also, if you'd like some pomanders for your next party, but don't want to make them yourself, you can buy them at Brittany's Etsy shop.

Do you have a DIY project from one of your parties that you'd like to share?  Please email me at jillian@catchmyparty.com.  I'd love to show it off!

TRENDS: Summer Parties on Catch My Party

by Jillian Leslie on

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!

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