Sunday, September 29, 2013

Tropical Bridal Shower for Destination Wedding

My brother and his girlfriend were having a destination wedding in Punta Cana in the Dominican Republic.  It only seemed fitting for me to have a surprise bridal shower for my soon-to-be sister-in-law that had a tropical flair to get us in the mood for a vacation to paradise!


Orchid Steal

As soon as guests entered the shower, they were greeted with our first game.  I must say that I am not really a fan of traditional shower games, so I tried to keep these games light and fun.  This was a mingling sit down game session here!  For this game each guest took an orchid upon entering the shower.  The orchids had pincher clips attached to them.  (I bought stems of artificial orchids at the craft store and took the flowers off and added the clips.)  The guests clipped the orchids in their hair, on their shirt, or where ever they desired.  They were told not to use the words, "Dominican" or "Punta Cana."  If guests were heard using either of those words they could lose their orchid.  Towards the end of the shower we determined which guest had the most orchids and she was awarded a prize.  We had signs placed randomly around the shower so that guests would be reminded to avoid the token words. 
This is a spin on the traditional baby shower game where you can't say the word "baby" or you would lose a diaper pin or something similar. 

Guess the Skittles

We had guests guess how many skittles were in the bottle pictured above.  The guest who was the closest got a prize.  The giant bottle of skittles went to my brother and sister-in-law as another little present.


Flowers, Shells, Burlap

We wanted the shower to have a tropical theme, but we also wanted it to be very elegant.  We used creative flower arrangements, sea shells, and burlap in a lot of the decor.  We bought a huge roll of burlap that was approximately 6" wide at Michael's Arts & Crafts.  We put this as a runner down the food table, on the front of the candy favor table, wrapped it around the cupcake stand, incorporated it into some of the floral arrangements, and even wrapped it around the prizes. 

We bought bouquets of flowers at the grocery store and then made unique arrangements with them, as you can see below.



Throughout the shower we had various signs.  They were printed to look like the Dominican Flag.  The flags explained the games, party favors, etc.  We placed some of the flags in flower arrangements, as shown below.

Bride's Chair

We made a string of pennants out of burlap.  The burlap is approximately 6" wide and can be purchased on a roll at Michael's.  We bought iron-on letters at JoAnn Fabrics and then cut the burlap into triangles, which were large enough to fit the letters.  We ironed the letters onto the burlap and then sewed the burlap triangles onto a piece of twine.  

Towel Cake

Another gift for my sister-in-law was a towel cake (also made by my mom - yes, she is very crafty).  The towel cake is a practical gift and also a fun decoration at the shower.  It is really easy to make a towel cake, just follow the directions on this web page.  Towel Cake Directions  You can then embellish the towel cake with ribbons, pearls, flowers, or whatever fits your theme.

Advice on a Shell

One of my favorite parts of the shower was the "Advice on a Shell" station.  The idea is that guests write a message of well wishes or advice for the bride and groom on a sea shell.  The shell is then placed in a large vase, which can then be displayed in their home.  In order to make this you will need to get a bag of large shells from the craft store.  Make sure that you use only the shells that have a large enough space to write a message on.  We then placed the shells in a trunk that we also found at the craft store.  We then found a large glass vase.  We placed sand on the bottom and wound a thin piece of twine around the top.  We hung a small metal charm frame from the twine and placed the wedding date on paper in the charm frame.  There was a small flag explaining the purpose of the "Advice on a Shell" station to the shower guests.  After each guest signed a shell, she dropped it into the glass vase.


Nautical/Tropical Cutlery

In order to create your own nautical cutlery, wrap it in a blue napkin and tie a thin piece of twine around the napkin.  Then knot a Lifesaver candy onto the twine.


For the game prizes we awarded hand soap.  The prizes were wrapped in burlap and tied with a color ribbon.  This burlap was used throughout various pieces of decor within the shower.

Party Favor

For a party favor we set up a sweets table.  Guests could fill a bag with an assortment of treats and candy.  We had salt water taffy, Reese's Peanut Butter Cups, Starbursts, Jolly Ranchers, mini chocolate chip cookies, and white chocolate covered pretzel sticks. 


As a gift to my brother and sister-in-law, my mom made a window picture frame containing pictures of the two of them.  You can find the directions to make a window picture frame under my "For the Home" category.  The post is called "How to Make a Window Picture Frame From and Old Window."


We had food in a couple of different locations so that people would mingle throughout the house during the shower. We had a main food table in the kitchen as shown above.
We had fruit, drinks, and dessert in a separate room of the shower.  We made umbrella skewers with pineapples, cherries, and blueberries.  We also had a large bowl of fruit and fruit dip as pictured above.
For dessert we had an assortment of cupcakes that we displayed on a couple of different tiered stands as shown above.  We elevated the one stand using a circular box, covered with blue paper and wrapped with burlap and ribbon.  We also adorned it with a tiny veil!

Friday, September 13, 2013

Baby Gender Reveal Party

A big thank you to my friends Lindsey and Matt for having a wonderful, exciting gender reveal party for their upcoming baby!  This was a special event to be able to be a part of.  I chose to keep my children's genders a surprise until the end, so I missed out on having one of these festive gender reveal parties.

Lindsey and Matt chose to learn their baby's gender by releasing blue or pink balloons from a box.  To learn more about the details of the party and the BIG REVEAL, continue reading below.


Boy/Girl Tally

Upon arrival, each guest made a guess as to whether or not they thought the baby would be a boy or a girl.  They placed their guess on the tally board and then attached a "boy" or "girl" button to their shirt.  By the time of the reveal the tally was about split 50/50!

The Special Box

The box containing the top secret surprise was delivered in style by Lindsey's dad!

Lindsey covered a large box with brown paper then decorated it as shown below.  The box was then taken to Party City and filled with the appropriate color balloons.  The box was sealed with more brown paper.


 And it's a...BOY!!!

Lindsey and Matt opened the box to reveal blue balloons!  Everyone was very excited for them!  The proof that the baby is actually a boy was written on the note pictured below!

How It Was Done

The balloons were tied to long strings that were taped to the bottom of the box.  This ensured that the balloons would not float away and gave us an opportunity to take some cute pictures!


I love this picture of Lindsey and Matt's little guy pointing at the balloons!

Using Photoshop, I edited the picture below so that the balloons were the only part in color. 

Only a few got away...

Congratulations!  We can't wait to meet the new little man!