Wednesday, 31 August 2011

Alice in Wonderland Double Baby Shower :)

Where do I start!! I have so many pictures I cant share as I have popped them onto a disk for the girls to look at first and then i will get permission for any they dont mind me sharing of their day :)

However....we can look at all the goodies that I made and everything I prep'd for the shower. First off the food...Savoury food was taken care of by the host and I supplied the candy bar and dessert table - to say it was a success is an understatment! I was completely overwhelmed by the reaction to it all and to say I love my job right now is also an understatement - the smiles and tears were worth all the work put into it!!I made vanilla chocolate rose lollies and loose rosebuds, popped them into little terracotta plant pots which were tied with red and white string and a little silver 'white rabbit' charm. I thought it would be nice for the girls to keep the plantpots and plant something in, something to grow with the babies so to speak :)
The cupcakes were vanilla with Oreo centre, cream cheese frosting and sweet red heart sprinkles. I fell in love with the teeny cards when I first saw them in Hawkins Bizarre so I glued them back to back either side of a cocktail stick to use as the toppers for the cakes :)
I made flooded flamingo cookies (no detail as my hands are shakey at the best of times and i didnt want to ruin them by giving them panda eyes and wonky legs! I think the plain pastel shade works well with it being a baby shower and it built my confidence enough to try decorating maybe next time! lol
The white rabbits were vanilla biscuits sprinkled with icing sugar (and if i do say so myself they were the best biscuits ive made yet - all thanks to the recipe over at Sweet Sugar Belle - she is a doll, lifesaver and sanity restorer!!) Next up are the little vials of hearts that I made for each of the girls. They each had a lock, key or heart charm, little tag and their names in rub ons on the front of each bottle.
The candy bar did exactly what it does to everyone - it makes you feel like a kid again! Standing there with your bag in hand waiting to 'pick n mix' your sweets had everyone giggling and filling up extra bags to take home for their kids (such good mummies!!)
There was everything from Candyfloss, to mini red heart dragees, flying saucers to popping candy!
All watched over by a special little someone borrowed from a special little girl for the day :)
I took the hostess trolley with me that I made over earlier in the month and used this to hold the mini milk bottles and drink dispenser. The gorgeous blue colour was made from LOTS of lemonade and 2 bottles of blue alchopop! The girls all loved it - it was even weak enough for the mums to have a little! :) *click to see larger pic of the 'drink me' straws* I layered up the bottom two shelves with little nicnacs that symbolised the day and made everyone smile including the little picture frame with all the sketched images of the Alice in Wonderland original pictures.

Tables were set down the middle of the garden and covered with white linens and a pale green spotty cotton. I set all of the cups, saucers, plates, milk jugs etc down the centre and draped them with pearls etc - and yes some of the cups were upside down and tilted just like in the book :)The garden was decked (get it!) with large playing cards, strung and pinned so that it looked like bunting.
There were heart shaped balloons inside the house (all the ones outside took off to the skies!!)... well as LOTS of tissue pompoms and flowers all around the house!
I think setting the scene is all part of the enjoyment for me and I love sourcing little bits that make a table look good...something that may not look like much seperately but when you put them together it brings memories or creates new ones....needless to say I love this photograph!
These mini suitcases were a present from Bev (BananaFrog) when I had Evie - they were filled to bursting with baby goodies and I just knew they would be used again and again - thank you Bev they came in perfect!
Ok i think ive saturated you with enough for tonight - tomorrow i will share some shots from the photobooth :)

Friday, 26 August 2011

Tissue Pompom Tutorial

I cant just sit and watch tv -I have to be doing something else at the same time and these pompoms are a fantastic way to keep your hands busy without too much concentration!

People are charging fortunes to supply these for weddings, baby showers etc but here I will show you how to get 2 decent sized pompoms out of 1 pack of tissue and a little ribbon - all for just over £1!! :)

Gather together your tissue and matching ribbon (you can use florists wire, clear fishing wire - anything to secure the pompom in the middle) I prefer ribbon as it holds better when its hung and co0ordinates with the pompom :)
Open up the sheets of tissue so that the sheets are only folded in half.
Cut down this central fold to give you 2 (slightly larger than A4) pieces to work with.Cut down any remaining edges where the tissue is folded - this means you can peel back each sheet seperately.Concertina fold the tissue in approx 2 inch lengths.
Press to flatten the edges slightly once youre finished folding. This is when, if you prefer petals, you would cut the edges to a point. I leave mine as they are as it looks more rose-like when unfolded.
Fasten the tissue in the middle with a tight not on your ribbon or preferred fastening material - leave one long end, which is to string up the pompom.
Gently pull one sheet of tissue at a time until it is at a 90 degree angle, continue with half the amount of tissue standing up.
The tissue will fold down less and less as your pull more down. This is what creates the petal and volume.
Turn the tissue around and pull the remaining petals down on the other side.
Dont worry about how it looks at this stage - you will fluff it later.
Turn it on its head and repeat for the other half of your tissue pompom.
Both sides will look the same once your finished - make sure the ribbon isnt tucked inside.
Now you can gently ruffle the tissue until it spreads out and fills the gaps, give it a shake and the 'petals' seem to fall where theyre suppose to. Gently crinkle or shape and tissue to cover the central gaps where the ribbon is.
Put it to one side and make another....or 23!!
They are addictive, look very effective and create a great back drop for parties and display :)

Let me know if you give it a go and please link to me so i can see pics on your blogs :)

Sunday, 21 August 2011

Double baby shower - Alice in Wonderland Theme..

Next Tuesday is a double baby shower with an Alice in Wonderland theme! One of the ladies knows she is having a girl and the other doesnt want to know what shes having so we couldnt go with a colour theme....what better to follow up with than Alice!! (The 2 ladies dont even know the shower is happening so its going to be a lovely surprise from their friends!)

After walking through a lot of red, pale blue and white giant pompoms the girls will be led to a marquee in the garden where the dessert table, candy table and vintage tea party will all be set out.

I am making Flamingo flooded cookies and white rabbits to go into the goodie bags...Each guest will receive a personalised necklace with a little 'drink me' labelled bottle and silver white rabbit charm...
There will be lots of details dotted around the garden including a bush with lots of red roses, a couple of white ones and a pot of red paint. Pocket watches and giant playing cards made into bunting...small playing cards will be adorning the tops of some of the cupcakes with little 'Congratulations' signs too.
Im making oreo cupcakes with vanilla cream frosting and will cover them with teeny little red heart well as a heart based candy bar (love hearts, red chocolate hearts etc)
As well as cake pops and lots of fabulous little treats there will be some homemade chocolate roses for everyone...

I am completely in love with backdrops at the minute and will be using the one below as the setting for the dessert table. It is approx 3ft wide, 2ft tall and will fit perfects so that the table is set out in front of them all!!
So excited, I have a photo booth and lots of props as the ladies are all dancers etc so love being in front of the even going to get a chance to do some bump shots!! I cant wait to see it all set out!!

Thursday, 18 August 2011

When Debbie met Kirstie...

I shall start at the beginning!

Last week I got a phonecall from my sister telling me to expect a call from Persil as she had nominated me for the Mini Miracles competition (about mums who do mini miracles everyday with their kids) and apparently I was in the final!


Phonecall came from Persil (well, PR company on behalf of Persil) telling me I was a winner and had won...

a Years supply of washing powder
£1000 worth of holiday vouchers
Overnight stay in Devon and

MEET KIRSTY ALLSOPP FOR LUNCH IN HER HOUSE!!So, Tuesday came and I spent 7 hours with my bottom going numb on a train down to Honiton - near Exeter, a taxi was picking me up to take me to Woodbury park Golf Club which is where I was to spend the night. It was still all surreal at this point until another mum who was at the train station tried to nab my taxi and we both realised we were heading to the same destination as we were both Miracle mums!! We shared the cab and chatted about how we got nominated, what we did (shes a CEO on the board of Starbucks!), she had 2 little girls with her and they were both making me pine for my own kids (hubby was on duty with them all as he said i deserved the night away to relax!) :)

We got to the golf club and checked in then were met by the lovely PR girls (blonde hair, pretty and skinny - jealous.. moi??) who took care of everything including dinner and wine. This is where all 5 of us miracle mums got to talk to each other and find out that we all actually have a LOT in common!! Whether it be competitions, blogs, twitter or just enjoying being a mum, we all realised that it was pretty special to be credited for something we all seriously enjoy :)
We ended up taking a bottle of wine back to one of the girls rooms and it was seriously as though we had known each other forever - we laughed, cried and finally got to our own rooms a little after midnight!

Up early the next morning for breakfast and picked up via taxi to head out to Kirsties home. We pulled into her drive, boy do i love the crunch tires make on pebbles, and marvelled at the grandeur of the house....btw you could have fit my entire home into Kirsties kitchen!!

Kirstie came out to meet us all in one of her trademark dresses and looked every bit the domestic goddess she appears to be on screen. After shaking hands and asking everyones names she ushered us into her home and we were offered a cup of tea/coffee before being told all about the house and the renovations etc. This house is actually her husbands and is HUGE - im talking 14 bedroom, put the kids at one end of the house and need a tracking system type HUGE! They even have a priest hole in their wardrobe floor! Nothing was off limits, we strolled from room to room, up to the attic and all through the bedrooms (including Kirsties own!) - the boys, Bay and Oscar were little stars and went to grab torches etc so we could peer into the priesthole and spy around little hidden corners! lol

When we were finished the tour (sorry for the lack of pictures but its a home and didnt feel right to snap pics of personal belongings etc - plus there was a professional photographer there anyways so when i get some of those through i will share) we headed downstairs again to have a glass of champagne and take pics of us with Kirstie etc. We all cheered for photographs, sipped champagne and decorated with decoupage - just the 6 of us around the kitchen table, laughing, talking and putting the world to rights.

Lunch was next and boy were these cakes pretty! As well as lots of sandwiches, homemade salsa, scones and cream were fresh berries, pretty flowers and water spiked with mint leaves. True to form it was served on mismatched china and 'found' items, old silver forks, spoons and perfect linen napkins - we even got to look in the drawers at the Christmas napkins Kirstie made on the last show. Above her sideboard was the most amazing picture made with buttons...well, you know my love of buttons!! I asked her if it was ok to take a photograph to fab is that and it was MASSIVE! I might make something similar but on a smaller scale...much smaller! lol

After lunch the taxis arrived so after a round of hugs, signed pics and questions about what was the next show like etc we all departed with our pressies of Cath Kidston bags, (did you know Cath is Kirsties cousin??!!) beautiful blue pot plant and our decoupage goodies. Oh that crunch of tires on pebbles again will never get old! :)

So, thats my story of how Debbie met Kirstie...Im now sat waiting to do an interview with a newspaper and plotting on how I can get my own TV series! I think I could get use to this!! ;)

(HUGE, MASSIVE thankyou to my sis Kelly as none of this would have happened without you - i got her to sign one of the photos above where shes in the green dress for you!)