Tag Archives: invitations

8 Comments

Today I'm continuing with the details of my sister's Japanese themed baby shower.  If you missed the first post you can catch up here.

I've told you before that I know some amazing people.  I am proud to call them my friends.  One of those people is my buddy Bree (aka: Lucy).  Bree is the owner of Wedding Tulle (weddingtulle.com), an online wedding stationary and accessories site.  You may have heard of it, it has been featured in  Real Weddings, The Knot, The Today Show, Good Morning America, Brides Magazine and more.  She's kind-of a big deal.  And she's my party-planning-partner-in-crime.

One day Bree and I were discussing the shower and as soon as I mentioned "Japanese Theme" I could hear her little wheels turning in her brain.  About a week later she called me up and said,  "I have the perfect invitation template... it's folds over like a kimono!"  to which I exclaimed, "That's exactly what I was thinking of doing!"  We think so much alike it's scary.

The next thing to do was to pick the paper that would become the "jacket" of our invitation.  The internet search began and soon we were reminded of this website: The Paper Studio.  I have drooled over their papers for years and this was the perfect excuse to order some samples.  They have a whole section of their site dedicated to authentic Japanese Chiyogami, Yuzen & Washi papers and for a small fee will send you samples of them.  I went a little crazy.  I ordered about 20 samples.  This turned out to be a problem because I fell in love with ALL of the sample pieces!  Here are a few of the samples I ordered:

It was so hard to choose!  I shuffled those samples around and around, I polled everyone for opinions, and in the end I did what any self-respecting designer would do...

I ordered 5 different papers and used all of them! I need to stop right here and let you know the customer service at The Paper Studio was out-of-this-world!  They are so friendly and helpful and I would definitely buy their products for future projects.

You'll notice above that the envelopes we used were made of vellum so that the gorgeous papers were visible as soon as the guest picked up the mail. We made the mail pretty!

As I was mailing the invitations it donned on me you might like to see the stamps we used so I snapped this real quick with my phone, in the back of my car, in the rain.  I must really like y'all.

This was one of those details that I had planned on doing, then when it came down to the wire I was tired, I was cranky, I didn't think we had time and Bree insisted we simply HAD to do it.  She was right.  It was the icing on the cake.  Here's how it happened:  at the very last minute, I raced home and scanned the image (a bag that you will see later) and emailed it to Bree.  Bree did some fast editing and uploaded the graphic to stamps.com.  A couple days later we had darling little Japanese-girl stamps and people just raved over them.    And it gave the guests a little peak into what they might expect come shower-day.

The moral of the story is, always listen to Bree.  She knows her stuff!

Oh!  I almost forgot to show you the inside of the invitation!

Since the outside was the main attraction, we kept the inside of the invite pretty simple.  And that was also due to the fact that Japanese styling tends to be real minimalist.  I wanted to carry that feeling over to the invitation.  The one truly OCD moment Bree and I had was with the color of the wording.  You see, each of the papers were different colors.  We could have settled on black or brown for each invitation.  But we didn't.  While Bree was slaving in the back of her shop cutting out all of the "jackets", I was in the other room searching Adobe Kuler for just the right ink color...for each paper.  I must have printed out about 30 samples until we arrived at just the right shades of ink.  So five different papers, five different ink colors.  Don't look at me like that, we wouldn't have been able to sleep that night if we hadn't done it our way!

Bree added the finishing touch with the coordinating belly-bands and medallions.  That girl is pretty clever.

I just loved how these invitations turned out and the guests seemed pretty excited about them too.

Next post I will try to delve into some of the decor, and a little DIY project that turned into the favors.

4 Comments

photo by Jessica Cole Photography

It all began with this little guy:

Hudson came to greet us all in December of 2009. His mommy is Bree, my buddy and co-instigator.   It was right about this time that we started planning his first birthday party, because we are crazy like that.  And if  one of us is planning a party, the other is by default included.  This makes for some exciting adventures!

When Bree and I plan a party we begin with Brainstorming phase. During the Brainstorming phase, we are allowed to throw out any idea, no matter how crazy or bizarre. Laughter is the hallmark of this phase, we can both come up with some wild ideas!   After we have tossed around all of the brilliant, mediocre and hilarious ideas in our brain, we move on to the next phase, Research. We scour through websites, blogs, magazines, cookbooks, etc., looking for that perfect party-theme.

That's what lead us to this article: Mr. Man Party from Hostess with the Mostess. I am going to stop and do a little shameless name dropping here. The Hostess with the Mostess website is the creative goldmine of Jenn Sbranti, formerly of my hometown, alumnus of my alma-mater Faith Christian High School and in fact, I was her JV Volleyball coach, the poor girl.   Anyway, HWTM had featured an article on a party by Christiana Brian, a Mr. Man Party.  At that point, Bree and I knew we just had found the theme for Hudson's 1st birthday party, except we changed it to a Little Man Party, since their last name is "Little", it was just too good to resist!

With inspiration from HWTM and our own ideas thrown in for good measure, we started 2011 off with one fun party.  That of course required a custom designed invitation from Wedding Tulle, which handily is owned by Bree.  Bree came up with this quirky and fun invitation that let everyone in on the party theme right off the bat.


BTW: All of Hudson's photos were taken by the amazingly talented Jessica Cole.

We tried to fit in as many "manly" props, foods, and decorations as we could.  That's where these came in:

Chocolate Mustaches!  We could have bought them, but like I've said before, homemade is better.  And cheaper.   I made them with melted down Dove chocolates.  And they were yummy.  And I was bathed head to toe in chocolate by the end of the day.  Not a bad day.


Next came the ties!  Bree and Brandy (another party conspirator!) picked out a bunch of beautiful patterned papers and made ever so many ties for banners, gift bags, etc. Aren't they adoreable?!



Then there was the food! Bree and Dan created a menu of "mini man food" such as mini sliders, popcorn chicken, hot dogs in a blanket and for the littlest of men, peanut butter and jelly sandwiches.


Our good friend Ashley Park of Wooden Spoon Catering made the lovely cookies, mimicked after the patterns on the ties. Thank you Ashley!!


Then of course, there was the birthday cake and matching mini cake by Mickey's Cake Creations, again modeled after the patterned papers used throughout the party.


As for entertainment, what's more entertaining than a photo booth for your party? Bree printed out a variety of mustaches and glued them onto sticks for props along with signs of good wishes and happy birthday for Hudson. Here you see LeiLani and I sporting our cool 'staches.

And the birthday boy... well, I think he liked it!


We had so much fun, and we hope the guests did too. Thank you to everyone who helped with planning, constructing, cooking and cleanup (Bree's Kitchen Crew, you know who you are!). Hudson-buddy, your Auntie loves you and can't wait to see what kind of party-craziness your mommy has planned for me next year!

This was a collaboration with one of my best-buddies  Bree (aka: Lucy), owner of weddingtulle.com , for best-buddy LeiLani's baby shower when she was pregnant with Mia.  Here we are the day of the shower:

The approach was simple:  LeiLani was obsessed with damask and these black chandeliers she had seen at Urban Outfitters.  So obsessed that she decked baby Mia's whole room in it.  Naturally we ran wild with it and not only designed the invitations in damask & chandeliers, we decorated the whole shower that way! 

This invitation brings back some wonderful memories and you can order it or other custom invites at www.weddingtulle.com