Setting up in Layers~
Everyone that came to my daughter's shower was in disbelief of all the things we had done to make this shower really special. What sums up this shower for me is the saying..."Rome wasn't built in a day" and neither was this shower. And as you are planning your next event, ask yourself a couple of questions:
1) How many people are we inviting? This will help you plan where your event will be. If it's a small shower, 10-30 people, perhaps you can have it at your home, in your yard (weather permitting) or possibly in a garage. 40 or more, you may need to rent a place, hotel banquet room or possibly host it at a park. For this shower, we had 79 people and I was stressing to make it work at my daughter's home. We ended up taking all her furniture out of two rooms to make this possible. Fortunately for us, she had a new home with not much to move around. I borrowed tables, rented chairs, but at the last moment, had questioned possibly moving the event if many more people had rsvp'd, but luckily, this all worked out.
2) Financially, what funds do we have to work with?
Plan a budget, map the room, draw a schematic of the tables, write out a quick menu, plan a few games and decide on your favors. Doing all this from the beginning will keep you close to what your budget will allow and let you make the appropriate cuts and changes as necessary. For this shower, I had much of the candy buffet jars, had the pink curtains and borrowed all the shabby chic flowers and decor from my sister to keep the cost down. I decided that most of my table decor would also be gifts for my grand baby instead of paper decor that I'd have to toss out later or give away.
So let's begin~
For me to achieve all the things I had wanted to do for this shower, I had to start a day prior. If you are able, this is the best way to have little to no stress the day of the shower. If you are unable to do this, make sure you have a few friends to come help you with set up the day of.
The day ahead, I set up the back drop and all of the tables. I'll list this in order to give you my steps:
I set up the curtains first. I had three polka dot curtains. I chose the window for my backdrop since it was a day shower and I would have that fabulous light peeking through. I hammered three nails into the wall, two at the ends, one in the middle. I tied a long rope tightly onto the nails. My curtains had eyelets so I took little strips of material, tied it to the curtains and tied them to the rope.
I took a long piece of tulle and for effect, I tied it over the top, to just the nails.
From the center nail, I hung a large frame that would appear to frame the cake once it was placed.
From the end nails, I tied vintage flags on little ropes to the frame.
I hung the crepe paper balls.
I set up the tables, little white dresser, suitcases.
I put all table cloths on tables.
I placed all silk plants, dress displays, candy jars and favors on the tables.
I attached a pink tulle skirt to the dessert table (made by tying long strips of pink tulle onto a ribbon made to fit the table and then safety pinned on)
At this point, most of the shower was ready the day before.
Here are my little vintage flags that I made out of left over material I had from when my children were babies. It worked perfectly. I cut it out using a triangle template I had made with cardboard and I cut it with zigzag scissors. Then I attached them with little pink clothespins and tied little strips of material on it too.
I set up a clothes line with clothes pins ( that I painted white and shabby) with some baby items I bought for my grand baby, and I put it above the gift table. I had a little bird cage for cards. (Yes, I know I went a little crazy with the outfits but I simply couldn't help myself!)
My daughter's mother in law made these beautiful nail polishes as favors for the adults. The little "it's a girl" tags were purchased at Hobby Lobby. For our little attendees, we had little lip glosses.
Aren't these just precious!
Ooh la la...
I also had fresh flowers, little gems and cut out pink crowns to adorn the sides of the outfits.
I have a really crafty friend that does flower arranging and she did all my flower arrangements for me. It was a big help. Check her out here on blogger too~
The day of the shower, fresh flowers and food.
I took marshmallows, dipped them in pink tinted white chocolate and I dipped them into candy pearls.
I chose white, some silver and pink candies for the candy buffet. In the back, you'll see some popcorn. I had two types, Bubblegum and Cherry vanilla. I created the recipes for Duncan Hines and I'll post the recipe link here. The popcorn is delish and easy breezy. Best of all, it's pink.
Some of the treats that I made were Circus animal cookies (recipe below), raspberry french macarons and sugar cookies.
These are super simple and are created by mixing one can of vanilla or cream cheese frosting with 1 bag of food processed animal cookies. Roll in balls, dip in white and pink tinted chocolate and sprinkle with candies. So cute, so simple and soooo yummy.
On the table, I had purchased little frames at the thrift store and we placed pregnancy photos and ultrasound pictures in them.
And once we placed the beautiful cake, the shower had begun.
Diaper raffle and late night diapers
For the diaper raffle, if someone brought a bag of diapers, they received a raffle ticket for a large prize. My daughter ended up with about 30 bags of diapers and the prize cost about $20.00. Now that was a great idea. We had also, for fun, had diapers on the table. We called it late night diapers. It was a cute idea for attendees to leave a sweet, cute or witty saying for the mommy and daddy to read while changing baby after midnight. A few samples she received:
It'll be over soon.
Everyone was issued a necklace. If they said baby, someone was able to steal it. At the end of the game, the person with the most necklaces won. Then that person gave back all the necklaces and everyone had a cute little crown necklace to take home, courtesy of Erin's talented mother in law.
Baby word match/ concentration
I bought a board at the 99cent only store. On it I drew 20 squares. I randomly picked two spots and wrote in a saying. The person that matched both squares won the coordinating prize. (What I learned~ when you have 40 or less people, this would have been perfect, but for 79 people, I needed 40 squares, not 20. So not everyone ended up being able to guess.)
This is what I wrote in the squares and the prize they won:
Baby daddy- won the Big Hunk candy bar
Diaper Surprise- won the "Big Swirl" sucker
College fund- won the 100K bar
Sweet Girl- won a Baby Ruth
After pregnancy- won thin mints
Up all night- won the laffy taffy
A hungry baby- won Cry baby sour gum
Breast feed- won a Milky way
Sweet newborns- won Sugar babies
preemies- won runts
Rice with small safety pins was another game we played. What I also learned is that a large party is handled differently than a small party. For 79 people, you need at least three bowls filled with plain white uncooked rice and safety pins. You will also need three friends with cell phone timers to help. Have the attendee wear a mask, and time them for 30 seconds to see how many pins they can get out of the bowl. The person with the most...wins.
Bubblegum babies was an easy game to play with a lot of people. It is timed but everyone plays at the same time. We passed out paper plates, two tooth pics, a piece of bubblelicious bubblegum and told everyone at the same time to chew their gum. After a few minutes, they all placed their gum on their plates and only using their tooth pics, had to make a baby in 1 minute. Then my daughter walked around a picked out the cutest baby to win a prize.
Suitcase dress up.
In the back of the room, I had set up 3 cute vintage suitcases. They weren't just for looks. Inside each case was a cabbage patch doll, a onesie, an outfit and a diaper plus a blind fold. I set it up so I could have three people play at the same time. We ended up running out of time for this game but I was prepared in case we needed more games.
To play this, each person is blindfolded and has to dress their babies with all items in the luggage. Time each round and the person with the best time is the ultimate baby dresser and wins the prize.
In the kitchen~
The glasses and bottles were not only for our guests to use, but they also served as party favors for them to take home. For the little girls we gave baby bottles and the adults, jelly jars. My son in law drilled holes in the tops of the lids and then sprayed them with pale pink spray paint. For the bottles, we tied the bottle lids on so that when they were done with the drinks, they could use their bottles for their dolls at home.
Pretty in Pink Pins
Some of the little extra details I did for this shower were gift pins for the mommy, Nonna, Mimi, great grandmas and great great grandmas. These sweet pins were made by Collette at Brier Rose Design. Check them out on Etsy. They're made to order.
...and the afterglow of wonderful memories with a beautiful backdrop left us filling wonderful and giddy.
Alison Whitsell photography
In the Big Bear, California area
Katie Jeffers photography
In the High Desert and Victorville, California area
(leave me a message for contact info for Katie until her website is built)