February 25, 2011

Behind The Scenes, Holiday Decorating~Part 1

A little behind the scenes peek into holiday decorating, well two peaks into the behind the scenes, so stay posted for the next one. People often say how do you keep track of it all? I don't know really I just do, but when I see photos like these I sometimes wonder the same thing. Of course to remember things like this you, you forget other things. Which is why I keep LISTS lots and lots of LISTS and I love to check things off my lists.

Covering the carpet before we load in. Holiday decorating is messy, glitter, glue, wires.  Glitter is the worst culprit, no matter how many times you vacuum or bathe it just sticks around.

Carpet covered and tables stacked ready to receive product.

The first truck arrives and its time to unload, all hands on deck.

Now its unloaded, the dreaded next step, getting it all in and up to our work room. They are all waiting for me to tell them what to do next, because I like to supervise don't you know. And also, because my staff knows that if there is anything I hate more it is doing double work; they know I am going to tell them what to take first, where to put it and what order it goes in. Plus believe it or not as it all goes by me I can tell if I have everything just by looking at the boxes.

And in it comes everything to the appropriate area. Wreaths to the wreath assembly area stacked and waiting to be decorated.

Ornaments to the ornament area. All of these boxes have to be broken down and ornament counting and sorting begins. This is the most important part of the process, mistakes here can cause problems later.

More loaded in, it looks chaotic but really it isn't.

Ok, so maybe to me it doesn't look chaotic but it does look like I have confused a few other people.

Ribbon making area and centerpiece assembly. Boxes of ribbon ready to be made into bows, lots and lots of bows. 

Garland to be fluffed, lights checked and sorted.

{me, my daughter Jessica and my Mom}

One of the nice perks of working for yourself is I get to work with my daughter and my Mom can come by, take photos, visit with my staff and take in all the chaos fun.

Me supervising or as I like to phrase it orchestrating the whole process. Besides someone has to be in charge, and that would be me.

Once I know everyone knows what to do for the time being, I am off to find a quiet spot to return calls and finalize details for more jobs and checking on other jobs.
Then I must return to supervise  orchestrate.
This was one holiday decorating installation, it wasn't all the product and it wasn't my warehouse, it is a job site.  The above is why we like to fondly refer to what we do as camping.  We bring it all, set it up, do the work, break it down and move on to the next installation.  Part 2 will show us "camping" outside, that is always a lot of fun.

February 23, 2011

Sprinkles & Baking~

I love sprinkles!  I love going to the cake supply store and looking at all the fun stuff they sell. But my most favorite part is the sprinkle displays, so many colors and styles.  When I look at it all my mind just imagines all the fun things you can do with them..................
I haven't been in a cake supply store in awhile but this past weekend I signed up for a "class" and was reminded again of how much I like looking at all the sprinkles. 
Years and years ago I dabbled in making fondant cakes, back when people would say fon what? We also used to do cupcake decorating parties as well as cookie decorating parties.  Funny thing is this was before cupcakes and decorated cookies were the rage. (I so wish I was better at taking photos back then).
Looking at all the amazing goodies that people are making I have been thinking it would be nice to start playing with baking stuff again, NOT to sell mind you but just for fun. Ok maybe for a party or two, but I can guarantee you it won't be for one of those for 150 people with 2 weeks notice!
I think cakes must run in my family, one of my cousins is an exceptional cake maker in England, she has since retired and my other cousin loves to make cakes as a hobby. This past weekend she talked me into taking a class with her and that was when I was reminded how much I love being in a cake supply shop. So I'm thinking I needed a hobby, and maybe this could be it again.

February 21, 2011

Keeping It Simple~2 yr. old party

Sometimes a small party can just be the sweetest thing.   This was a Angelina Ballerina birthday party for an absolutely adorable 2 year old, who happens to also be named Angelina.  Mom and Dad wanted a small party where Angelina could just have fun with her close friends and family without feeling overwhelmed.

Adorable t-shirt and matching headband that matched the hand made invitations.

 Party favors were a set of Angelina Ballerina books for the guests to take home.

A small but sweet white dance floor for the aspiring ballerinas to be.

A special visit by a pink ballerina, who read Angelina Ballerina stories while the birthday girl and her guests enjoyed lunch.

Then onto the dance floor for some ballet lessons and twirling.

One moment while I check my real ballet shoes :)

The party craft was stuffing bears and dressing them in their own ballet outfit complete with ballet slippers.

Having fun stuffing our new friends. {please excuse the clear tub, the wind picked up and kept blowing the stuffing out of the basket}

Just a small gathering of friends and family that was relaxing and fun for everyone. Keeping it small meant that these 2 & 3 year olds weren't overwhelmed with too much going on and the Moms could relax and enjoy themselves as well.

Girlfriend quiet time!

February 17, 2011

Fabric Canopy Three Ways~

The following is the story of a fabric canopy, three ways. Whenever I have fabric panels sewn for decor I try my best to figure out sizing that allows me to use the panels in different ways. Why? Because sometimes I like to make things more difficult for myself, not really but kind of. And also because having these fabric canopies made is a little pricey and I like to be able to use them for different settings. I like to have the edges sewn and have ends sewn on both ends for the poles so that they have a completely finished look. So this is the story of three different looks and one huge set of fabric panels.

This was the first life for this fabric canopy, it was created for a Quincinera, the client wanted bright colors, a canopy over the dance floor that was tall. This original canopy was huge I think it measured 20 ft. l x 15 ft.w x 14 ft. h and then we extended it the other way and covered the head table as well. Definite impact in the room.

This canopy was seriously weighted down on each leg since it was going to be on the dance floor. The guests really enjoyed themselves on this dance floor under the canopy, I always love to see children enjoying themselves in the surroundings I create. It is really amazing to watch how grown up they act when they are in a more adult environment. They were awesome and not only had a great time but there was no swinging on the legs, thank goodness.

We hung paper lanterns along the side of the tent and lit them with LED battery operated lights to add some ambiance when the lights went down. I love this canopy in this height and it makes a huge statement in a room.

But then here is the same canopy completely transformed into a different look and I love it too.  A shorter and not as big version but just as nice.

The party guests enjoyed it too. They were oh so grown up sitting under their lunch canopy, again such a pleasure seeing them enjoy themselves. These smiles are what make my job complete.

The funny part was after the girls had finished their lunch, all the Moms brought their drinks under the canopy to enjoy it themselves for the rest of the afternoon. And who could blame them I love being under them, it just creates such a different feel to a party and a space.

And one more time, here is another canopy using only two of the colors.  I love when I can re-use items in so many different ways it always makes things so much more fun!  And for this canopy I did the math right, isn't it wonderful when a plan comes together.  Just another reason why I love fabric there are so many things you can do with it.

How do you get more uses out of your party props? I would love to hear about them.

February 16, 2011

Purple Palooza Part 2~ White Tiger Cubs

Purple Palooza Party PartII~ White Tiger Cubs, there was a lot going on at this party, but I thought they deserved their own post, just too cute!
It isn't every day you prepare for two white tiger cubs to be the VIP guests at a party {white tigers are not white when they are little, they are actually a yummy beige color}. We wanted to make sure they enjoyed their time with us so we prepared a very special VIP tent for them.  Well it was actually based on what we thought they would like; plenty of room to play, closed off area so only invited guests could get up close and personal, solid back wall for no distractions, shade to keep the sun off of them, of course we had to add a little purple to the area so it would match the rest of the party, oh and some specialty lighting.

And here they are. They arrived very happy and interested in what was going on, they were even wearing purple to match the party, my kind of guests. 

Fresh from their VIP trip to Vegas this 6 month old brother and sister team
were ready to play.

They even stopped for a moment to be introduced to the birthday girl, who by the way did not know they were coming.  She kept wanting to know why there was a penned in area and by the look on her face I don't think she was buying my story that the juggler needed to be in there; smart girl.

But upon arriving at their very own VIP lounge they were not quite interested. I mean really not interested in going in, they wanted to explore some more and were really loving laying on the grass. Not a lot you can do when a 80 lb. white tiger cub isn't interested, except wait and have a visit.

It took a little cajoling, but still not too interested. Did the decor not meet their standards it was hard to say. Did their lounge not meet their expectations, because they had just come from a week in Vegas, there was no telling. Of course there were so many things going on around them, they were just a little pre-occupied. And I'm sure the smell of steaks cooking didn't help.

Ah, finally inside the VIP lounge they seemed to be quite happy enjoying the space, playing with each other and enjoying more of the grass.

I was one of the lucky ones who was invited in for a photo shoot.
All I can say is WOW not something that happens everyday.

My daughter Jessica was also invited, just one of the benefits of being the daughter of the planner.

The VIP lounge was perfect for guests to watch the tiger cubs as they
interacted with one another. 

We observed them and they observed us. You really could just stand and watch them for hours.

Just look at the size of that paw!

The birthday girl getting ready for her photo shoot with the VIP guests.

This was such a great experience for the birthday girl, her family, guests and my staff and I. I can only imagine how much more exciting it would have been if the elephants had of been able to make it {not joking}.  This was just one part of an amazing party that we had the privelege of planning. A special thank you goes out to Jackie of Wild Wonders for finding this awesome brother and sister team {on short notice} and making it happen for the birthday girl.