Thursday, August 6, 2009

Thrifty Thursday: It's Chic to Be Cheap {23}

Welcome to another edition of Thrifty Thursday: It's Chic to Be Cheap! I'm going to link this post up to Julia at Hooked on Houses tonight for her Hooked On Party. I love reading about what Julia's readers are hooked on each week. If you want a fun, smart blog to get hooked on, give Julia a visit!

This week, I am hooked on {Fun, Pretty Entertaining...on a Budget} (eew, scary word!).
I learned some good lessons when I co-hosted my sister's bridal shower last Saturday. More on that later. Join me today as I show you some pictures from the shower that show how we managed to throw a sweet shower without breaking the bank! LOTS of photos.

My first tip would have to be: Don't go it alone. Ask for help if you need it!

I knew I wouldn't be able to pay to rent out a chic spot in Olde Towne, so when the Maid of Honor suggested holding the shower in someone's home, I volunteered my own. I also knew that I wouldn't be able to afford all the food, favors, invites, and decorations if I also wanted to send Natalie (my 3 year old) to preschool this Fall. And paying the bills is always nice too.

I couldn't have pulled the party off in my house without the help of these two girlies (plus my mom!):

Meggan (Maid of Honor). Don't you love her dress?! Meggan did most of the leg work. She ordered beautiful invitations, sent them out, found amazing favors, and helped organize the food.

SuSu (my sis-in-law). She helped with food and allowed me to hold onto my sanity during set-up by keeping my girls occupied.

I wanted to do something cute and weddingish on my front door. I already had this grapevine wreath that was decorated for Valentine's Day. I wrapped it in white heart "tinsel" from The Dollar Store and made a little "Alison" sign with my Cricut. We used black and white for the shower with a little bit of bright pink as the accent.

Bright pink roses from Wal-Mart as the centerpiece in the Kitchen. I covered my Kitchen table with a white table cloth and used it as the beverage and cake table. I think I spent about $15 for a dozen and a half roses. Not bad.

Incredible Pink Punch was a hit! You can get my recipe here, and I promise it's really easy.

The problem with living near I-95 is that people who live more than 10 minutes away will often take that route to get to your house. This makes for an interesting morning when traffic is piled up for miles and your co-host is stuck in her car. With all the food.

The guests were very understanding and sipped punch and chatted while we waited for poor Meggan to untangle herself from I-95. She arrived a few minutes after the shower started, delicious food in tow!

This is our "new room." It's not really so new. We had it built last summer, but we don't really know what to call it. So it's the New Room. I spent 45 minutes on Saturday morning, hanging pictures that I had previously been too scared of hanging for fear of "messing up" the wall. I'll share more about the New Room another time.
Do you see the gorgeous fruit display? My good friend, JH, from my MOPS group, owns her own business. She taught herself how to carve fruit and vegetables, and makes the most beautiful creations.
I like how the table turned out! SuSu and I grabbed two long folding tables that I borrowed from T's mom, and stuck them end to end. Then I laid my $8.99 canvas drop cloth from Wal-Mart over them as a table cloth. It fit perfectly. It was JH's idea to take my leftover black and white fabric from this project and set the fruit platter on top. Love it!

Sorry for the blur!

You saw this table yesterday. Along with the fruit, veggie platter, mini quiches, spanakopita, meatballs, biscotti, butter/jam cookies, and spinach/cheese bites in the New Room; we served croissants with chocolate dip, chicken salad, crackers, muffins, dark chocolate, and a cheese platter in the Dining room. Yum!

This is the Southern Living at Home planter I got for $1.50 at Salvation Army. I filled the bottom with newspaper to give it height, then added pink tissue paper and utensils. We had a boxful of heavy-duty, square, black and white plastic plates that we borrowed from a friend.
Blueberry muffins on my yard sale, spray painted pedestal. I used some cute Dollar Store doilies to lay the food on.

I can't find my picture of the deck, but this is the picnic table in the yard.
I used my leftover burlap as a rustic table runner. We had to use some citronella candles because of the mosquitoes (ick!). I got the urn for a dollar or two at Salvation Army and spray painted it black. It was a nasty army green before. Then I sanded it a little bit, and filled with newspaper first, then moss, then sea shells.

Close up:

We had some conspicuously absent guests! My sister, the BRIDE, was late. She spent all night in the airport, and then got stuck in the traffic on I-95. I felt so bad for her. Natalie went out to Chick-fil-a with my brother, and I had a babysitter to keep Michaela Byrd occupied.

She had the sitter wrapped around her little finger! They must have played on the swing for an hour!


"I'm just so hot. Can you hold my sippy cup for me?" Lazy baby!!!

The bride got to visit with our Nannie, who came up from North Carolina to party with us.

Then it was time for games! I told Alison that while she was gone, the bridal gown store called and said that there had been an accident with her gown. She was so mad until I pulled out the toilet paper and said we were going to have a contest to redesign her gown using thrifty materials. The ladies got really into it!


They even made a garter for Tracy!


Adrienne had a lovely bouquet.

Meggan had a choker!


Time for cake! THIS is what the cake looked like when I got a hold of it. Um...no way!
I specifically told them NO color. I wanted just plain white buttercream because I was going to put fresh flowers on the cake. When I asked what the nasty black dot was, the woman told me it was so we could tell which side of the cake was chocolate and which was vanilla.

Hmm.... SuSu did her best to fix it for me. She used baby's breath to cover the dot up, and some of my pink roses and the baby's breath in the center.


I think Alison liked it.

Lots of presents!


Her mother-in-law-to-be (pictured below) gave her some lingerie that was actually quite pretty! I gave her a really cute photo album with a gorgeous black and white fabric on the front that coordinates with her wedding invitations. I liked the album because it is a different size--almost larger than a ledger.


Bow bouquet! She's supposed to carry this at the Rehearsal. One bow for each child she'll have. If this is true, I am in major trouble because I remember quite a few bows on mine.


Everyone loves a favor! I found these cute little favor bag/boxes at the Dollar Tree.
We used pink tissue paper from Target, and filled them with mini hand sanitizers from Bath & Body works, lip gloss, and a small Yankee candle. Meggan ordered the cute little labels online with the gifts, and we used them on the candles. The leftover labels became embellishments for the bags. Stored them on my Kitchen sideboard in the tray I found at Goodwill and spray painted white.

This was my first time to throw a shower, and I have learned that you don't have to spend a lot of money to have a good time. Did it look like a shower someone might have thrown for a movie star? No. Decidedly no. But we had fun.

I learned that nothing is ever perfect. Just do your best and don't sweat the rest. I really do enjoy having people over. My mom hyperventilates at the thought of entertaining. She wants everything to be just so, and so I don't think she really enjoys herself. I am trying not to be that girl.

I'm hooked on entertaining inexpensively! I'm already thinking about having the leadership team for my MOPS group over for an ice cream social. Another opportunity to practice open door hospitality!
{What are you hooked on this week?}

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21 comments:

  1. Sounds like you had a successful Shower!!! Congrats!!! It looked great!

    Suzanne

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  2. weeeee! I loved reading about my shower and looking at pictures! you guys did so awesome, I enjoyed every single second and couldn't believe all the detail that went into it...you made me feel so special, thank you!

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  3. Great tips! I love those little favor bags...so cute.

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  4. Everything looked so beautiful! Great job, and great tips, too! I'm glad you all had a fun time!

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  5. Everything is just absolutely adorable and so creative! You and your friends and family did a beautiful job with the shower...nice job, girlfriend!

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  6. Fun!! Lots of detail and creativity. Great job!

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  7. You were very creative. Looks like a fun shower.

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  8. What a lovely shower. I can't believe that the store put that dot on the cake, though! Thanks for sharing all of your ideas. :)

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  9. Looks like you had a wonderful time at the shower! I'm cracking up that they put that big dot on the cake--what in the world? I've never heard of that before.

    Just checked your punch recipe and it sounds really good to me. Must try that!

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  10. You did such a wonderful job. I think the bride enjoyed it - A LOT - if her face is any indication.

    Have a wonderful weekend,

    Becky K.
    Hospitality Lane

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  11. Looks like a great shower! Lovely blog too.

    xo,
    cristin

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  12. Very cute! Really wonderful ideas! Thanks for sharing.
    ~Amy

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  13. Wow, looks like you had everything covered! Very pretty indeed...

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  14. That was sweet.

    Stopping by to give a little bloggie love tonight.

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  15. I loved reading about your shower details and seeing all of your pictures. I especially liked seeing how you incorporated your thrifty finds into your shower decor. It looks like everyone had a great time!

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  16. What a great job you did! I love the picture arrangement over the buffet and how you used the planter to hold the forks. Thanks for sharing some great, budget-friendly ideas!

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  17. Great job! The cake dot is ridiculous. How about a little removable tag. I think the explanation would have flipped me out more than the acutal dot.

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  18. Oh my, what a BEAUTIFUL party! I'm sure everyone had a fabulous time! Glad it was a success :)

    Have a wonderful weekend!
    ~Michelle :)

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  19. Great job on the frugal party! Love the fruit tray and cute favor bags...

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  20. Looks like a GREAT party... LOVE the carved fruit... amazing!

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  21. It turned out beautifully Amanda! I love it...you are quite the hostess. Everything was gorgeous.

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