Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Halloween Porch Displays

 Happy Halloween friends, I hope you have some fun plans for today that include seeing children in costumes ... is anything sweeter?
I just wanted to share some outdoor Halloween decor pictures of houses in my neighborhood to get you in the mood for the day!!

Love this skeleton escaping ... and to the left of him is a witch coming up for air.

I loved the look of the orange berry wreath on the black door, it looks decorated before they do another thing.

This porch was one of my favorites ... interesting witch's 'brew', eh?

Still, my favorite wreath I saw all season.

 Pumpkins going up the steps are just classic!

Love the joyful postured stick scarecrow above.  Also the stick fence was a lot of fun ... and though the picture to the right, taken the day it snowed, isn't really Halloween, it is perfectly autumn, so I thought I would share it anyway.

Porch chairs are always a good base for decor, thought the pillow was cute!!

Thought I would throw in some cute and simple cupcakes that I saw at a fund raiser last week.  The pumpkins have a pretzel for a stem, while the skeletons have a frosted pretzel for a rib cage, pretty cute.

And last of all my own front porch, with the witch addition placed there for my witch's party, and she says:

"Let me 'witch' you a happy Halloween to all
and to all a good fright!!"

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

The Bride's Tea Party

I would like you to meet Holly.  She is a beautiful bride and a loyal customer at Treasures, the antique store where I work.

Holly grew up loving tea parties, so when she was ready for the biggest celebration of her life, she could think of no better theme than that of a tea party. 

She collected stacks and stacks of pretty plates and cups and saucers.  She converted some plates, and cups and saucers into 'tea lights', and tiered stands, and centerpieces.

I had to take a picture of her lovely wedding cake, as well.  The tea pots on the tables were full of marshmallows ... because instead of tea, she served hot chocolate.

The cups and saucers went home with her guests as favors to remember this fairy tale wedding event, and the beautiful princess and charming prince who hosted it.

Thank you Holly for allowing me to come and take pictures of your wonderful and magical wedding event.  It was lovely!!

Monday, October 29, 2012

5 Step Party Planning

 Everyone who knows me knows that I love parties.  I mainly love parties because I love getting together with people I enjoy and I also like getting to know interesting people better!  Now you know why I plan parties, let me tell you how I plan them.  Come along with me as I review the things I did to prepare for the Witch's Brew-haha that I held last Friday.
1. I think a pretty table is the first thing people notice when they come to an event of any kind.  I choose a color scheme and collect dishes, linens and decor that stays within that scheme.  As you can see I mix and match a lot.  This place setting has a checkered restaurant plate, with a paper plate on top of it.  The favors and drinks were planned to match the color scheme as well.
2. Make sure that you have other decor scattered around to make things feel like a party. If the party is seasonal, your seasonal decor will probably be enough. If not, be sure to add banners, balloons, and frills, to make your room look like a party is going on!  Of course a serious dinner party is the exception to this rule.  For an evening party with couples and a several course meal, you need not add decor to the room.

3. Your guest list is a very important part of sucessful party planning.  Be sure to invite people who are willing to have fun.  You may like someone very much, but they may only come to your party to appease you, or because they feel obligated.   Make sure your friends know that you will not be offended if they choose to pass on your event. Remember the 2 of 3 rule and invite accordingly.  For most events, one third of your invited guests will have a conflict of some kind.  For my witch party I invited 22 people and had 14 who came to share the fun!!
You also need to avoid inviting people that you know clash with each other.  As I mentioned, I always like to invite new people that I am getting to know.  This can be a lot of fun, just make sure that the new people you invite either have a friend who will be there, or you know that they are outgoing enough to be willing to make new friends.

4.  You will note that I have placed the menu pretty far down the list.  This is because I know I am not a great cook.  I have a few different things that I know how to make and that most people like, and I stick with those.  I do take advantage of party guests who offer to help with the food.  My friend LaVern made this lovely butternut squash soup for the party and served it in a pumpkin tureen, everyone loved it.  For many hostesses this part of the party is the most important, and the most impressive, and I love going to parties they host, I just know that cooking is not my strong suite.
As you can see I used a graphic from Graphics Fairy to add affect to the game.  In this case the Academy for Young Witches graphic was one adapted by another follower from an old photo available at every one's favorite Graphics site.

5. Now last, but for me, definitely not the least, are the activities included in the party.  If you have a large guest list and multiple tables, the activities may be the only time some of the guests will mingle with others.  My friend Ginny suggested this simple scavenger hunt game and I thought it worked well to get people moving around and meeting others.  I have shown the first page of the game above, with five pictures of the seven items listed.  See if you can match them up.

This dancing maiden was missing her right hand when I aquired her.  Very few people ever notice its missing.  Even with her disablity listed as part of the game, not one person noticed.       Besides finding physical aspects of the rooms and decor, I included several mingle oriented questions, such as: Name of a witch with a birthday in October.  Name of a witch with striped stockings.  Name of a witch wearing a black flower.  Name of a witch wearing shoes only a witch would wear. Some of these included multiple correct answers.  Of the 25 questions, the winner had 17 correct, with a second place prize given for 16 correct answers. 
The other activity was making fairy witches, which I showed you all last week.  The ladies chatted and shared while doing this activity as well.
Thanks for coming along and joining in the fun of party planning. 

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Witchy Friends are THE Best Kind!!

Just recovering from my most fun Witch's party yet!!  I have the most amazing friends!!  Does anyone else have 14 normally rational, responsible friends who would dress up in fun and funny witch costumes and go out in public!
 Well if you are going to get technical, you may have noticed, that Bell, the swell witch to the right is actually a mannequin, the one that I use to make my paper mache mannequins on, and she is wearing some fine witchy duds, a hat and a sweet face ... well, she gets to get out of the garage, for the first time in years, to do something other than have strips of ooey gooey newspaper dipped in flour batter for clothing.  I think she was actually pretty happy about that.

In the following photos you get to see most of the girls posing with the cauldron of 'witches brew"!

Aren't they all adorable?

Then its into the house for a three course meal.  Lavern, is shown here scooping up the lovely butternut squash that she made and served in a pumpkin tureen!!  Lavern is always awesome about helping me with my events, she is super creative, and always willing, you gotta love her, besides her soup was delicious!

Here are a few pictures of some charming witches that I have come to know and love!

And Now ... Ta, ta, ta - duh!!  are the winners of the witch hat competition, in order from first to third, Margaret, Kelli and Cristie.  I thought they were all charming, but my birthday girl daughter did the honors of choosing her favorites.

And here we all are, as the sign I am holding says, "The Witch and Famous".  After lunch we played a cute scavenger hunt game, suggested by my darling friend Ginny, then we made the fairy witches that I showed the prototypes of earlier this week.  

Thanks for coming along and sharing our wild and wacky witch's Brew-haha!!