Inspiring Celebrations Since 2006

Sneak Peek: New HWTM Collection at How Fast They Grow

Hostess with the Mostess for How Fast They Grow

Here’s a little sneak peek at the new “HWTM Collection” of modern digital scrapbooking templates that’s coming very soon to HowFastTheyGrow.com. Our first official HWTM-branded product…yay!

Hostess with the Mostess for How Fast They Grow

There are 81 different template designs in the collection that fall into 3 different categories – Mod Squad (Boy), Metro Sorbet (Girl), and Mostess Days (holidays & everyday celebrations).  The examples pictured above and below are all from Mostess Days…hope you like them! More info come soon… (more…)

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GlamDish: Autumn Treats

halloween and harvest party recipes

Today over at GlamDish: check out some fall-friendly treats & learn how to make homemade caramel apples!

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Sagaform’s Snack Set

sagaform snack set

This fabulously modern snack set from Swedish design company Sagaform contains 3 cool little serving bowls, each with thier own unique serving spoon/fork combinations… $40/set at aplusrstore.com. (Great gift idea!)

sagaform snack set

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Fabric-Inspired Entertaining

giveaway - pucci prints for wedding entertaining

I’ve adored a certain Pucci Inspired Wedding from Brides.com for a while now, and the idea behind a fabric-inspired soirée actually flows along the same lines as yesterday’s post on scrapbook-inspired entertaining.

Fabric is perfect for creating table runners and embellishing party favors, vases, and guest books. You can also scan the fabric pattern into your computer for use on printed materials like invitations, menus, and favor tags…and use either the paper prints or the fabric itself to create cool favors similar to the little perfume bottles pictured above. At $85 per piece though, those perfume bottles seem a little pricey for a party! So how about creating some themed DIY paper weights or cute party favor keychains instead?

Another tip: cool, inexpensive scarves work great for dressing up vases & tabletops as well!

{photography by Dasha Wright}

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Kids Party Etiquette

kids party etiquette and gifting

How many kids should you invite? Is it okay to expect gifts every year or should you try out the “no gift” trend? Gift registries for kids parties? What’s the best way to deal with rude parents?

Lisa Kothari from Peppers and Pollywogs – a wonderful kids party planning website/blog – wrote a truly fabulous article for us on Kids Party Etiquette that answers all of these questions and more. Click here to check it out!

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Simply Stated: Easy Entertaining – Scrap it!

modern entertaining with scrapbook paper

If you’ve followed HWTM for a while or checked out the party themes section, you may have noticed that I love to use scrapbooking supplies as tools for entertaining. Scrapbooking supplies are affordable, and there’s so much variety available from holiday and occasion themes to fabulous color palettes and modern prints that the possibilities for the look of your party are seemingly endless!

For more on this concept and an example tabletop, visit today’s post over at Simply Stated.

modern entertaining with scrapbook paper

A few more examples from the party themes section where scrapbooking supplies are especially prevalent:
Autumn Spice Thanksgiving
Santa Baby holiday party
Love Comes Softly bridal shower
Bling Baby baby shower

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SURPRISE GIVEAWAY: Estilo Weddings

Winner Update – 9/15: This giveaway is now closed. Thanks so much to all 342 of you who entered! The lucky random winner of the $100 gift certificate is: Commenter #267Nicole E. – who said: “I love the Becky Pearl Necklace. It might just be perfect for my wedding day!”

Congrats, Nicole – on both the giveaway and the upcoming wedding!

giveaway - estilo weddings $100 shopping spree

How about we kick the week off right with a fabulous new surprise giveaway?! Super stylish online shop – Estilo Weddings – is offering up a $100 Shopping Spree for anything on their site to a lucky HWTM reader!

Whether you’re in the wedding market or not, there are tons of pretty little things to shop for at Estilo Weddings, including invitations, stationery, custom stamps, photo albums, party favors, shower & wedding decorations, cake jewels, clay flower arrangements that look just like the real thing (see top left image!), gorgeous jewelry, handbags, bridesmaid gifts, and more!

giveaway - estilo weddings $100 shopping spree

Check out all these fabulous fashion accessories…I’m especially partial to the sparkly Samba Ring (in the lower right-hand corner below) myself! Details for how to enter after the jump… (more…)

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New Party Theme: Candyland Birthday

candyland birthday party ideas

Full details for how to recreate the Candyland Birthday Party we threw for Max Sutter last month are finally up in the Party Themes section.  I’m so sorry it took me a while to get them up – the plate’s been a little overloaded lately! But as they say, better late than never, right? ;)  Click here for all the details…

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I Heart NY (see you soon!)

hip hostess chambord new york event

I have no idea how summer flew by so fast, but the good news is that there are lots of things to look forward to and celebrate over the next few months!  If you’re looking for some fun new ways to spice up your upcoming celebrations or holiday parties, please come join us for the next Hip Hostess Series event in NYC on September 30th, which will be held at the super stylish Luxe Laboratory in Midtown Manhattan! More info from Chambord:

hip hostess chambord new york event

The theme of the NY event is “Modern Parisian” and there will be lots of feather accents, damask-style patterns, and glittery things, in addition to food and Chambord cocktails, of course! Guests will learn how to create themed centerpieces, dress up glassware, mix signature drinks, and more… (more…)

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GlamDish: Eggplant, Tomato, & Mozzarella Stacks

feather flower wedding & party decorations

Veggie-lover? Not a veggie-lover? Either way, chances are good that you’ll enjoy this easy, delicious side dish recipe starring eggplant, tomato, and mozzarella cheese!

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Fabulous Feather Décor

feather flower wedding & party decorations

Feathers add such a glamorous & unique feel to parties and weddings…I’ve always loved the look but am especially in the mode right now because we’re working on some fun feather accents for the upcoming Hip Hostess/Chambord event in NY at the end of the month! (more details on that coming soon!)

Pictured above, clockwise from upper left:
• Beautiful peonies surrounded by ostrich feathers
{photo by: Lifestory Photography, via theknot.com}
Pink Feather Bouquet – featuring earthy-brown pheasant feathers and magenta-stained duck feathers.
{photo by: Roland Bello, via brides.com}
Cattleya Orchid Bouquet with lush yellow ostrich feathers
{photo by Ellen Silverman via Simple Stunning Weddings}
• Gorgeous Vintage Glam Feather Tree Centerpieces
{photo by: Clark Photographics, via the knot.com}

feather flower wedding & party decorations

Pictured above: gorgeous DIY feather tree centerpieces constructed from IKEA vases wrapped in tulle, instalytes, and oversize ostrich feathers…get full details here (scroll about 3/4 way down the page}.

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Bklyn Pillow

modern handmade ring pillows

Congrats to Vané of Brooklyn Bride on the launch of bklyn pillow – her brand new line of contemporary, handmade ring pillows! If you’re looking to add a modern, unique touch to your big day, head over to bklyn pillow to check out all the fun designs!

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Simply Stated: Autumn Orange & Purple

fall autumn party inspiration

As a follow-up to last week’s Bold Black & Yellow inspiration board over at Simply Stated, I created a new Autumn Orange inspiration board today – after Simply Stated reader Jen requested it…click here to check it out and get all the resources & details – including a link to the Pumpkin Divine martini pictured above…yum!

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Interview at Tip Junkie

tip junkie hwtm interview

Laurie at Tip Junkie interviewed me for this week’s Talk to Me Tuesday segment on her creative, tip-driven blog. The interview is focused more on blogging than entertaining, but it was fun to discuss the business side of things this time…thanks for the feature, Laurie!

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More from MoMA: Cool & Contemporary

More cool new kitchen & dining finds from MoMA Store in sleek silver, black & white:

1. Pop-up Bottle Cap Remover – designed by Alessi, one of my personal favorites – this egg-shaped bottle bottle cap remover uses a pressure mechanism to open bottles with ease… and flair!
2. Hanging Demitasse Spoons – Cleverly designed, these stainless-steel spoons are bent to hang on cups and dishes.
3. Ramen Spoon/Fork Set – In keeping with the eco-friendly mindset – these 2-in-one utensils are intended to eliminate the waste created by disposable chopsticks.
4. Palette Serving Set – Express your inner artist with this creative way to serve your favorite appetizers & dipping sauces!

…and pictured below: fun pressed-vinyl Bubble Placemats:

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New at MoMA: Delicious Chocolate & Red

Shiny, new chocolate & red finds from MoMA store: brilliant red Bean Vacuum Jug (inspired by the shape of a coffee bean!), cute & contemporary lacquer Cupcake Canisters, artsy Aika Espresso Cup & Saucer sets, and the ultra-modern and deliciously glossy Husque Bowl.

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Labor Day Menu Idea: Gourmet Turkey Burgers & Oven Fries

labor day recipes

Looking for a way to fancy up your burgers this weekend? These gourmet turkey burgers from epicurious feature tomato jam, olives, and feta and look pretty tasty… and healthy!

You can even make them mini-sized and turn them into sliders, then dish them up with some yummy baked fries. Feel free to substitue your own seasoning for the one called for in this recipe – which sounds like it could be hard to find). For creative presentation, dish the fries into juice cups or mini takeout containers, as pictured below in the Labor Day Party segment…

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HWTM on KCRA: Labor Day Party Ideas

labor day party ideasI’m up in Northern California visiting family this week and had the opportunity to share a some Labor Day party ideas on Sacramento’s KCRA News this morning, which was so much fun! The focus of the segment was ideas for throwing a stylish & creative Labor Day party without spending a ton of money or “laboring” for hours in the kitchen…

labor day party ideas

You can view the video clip here, but it’s a little fuzzy online, so I took a few pictures of the recording on my parents’ TV screen so that you can see the details a little better. (more…)

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GlamDish: Beer-Inspired Cocktails

beer inspired cocktail recipes

Today on GlamDish: check out some fun beer-inspired cocktail recipes, like this Guinness Float from Everyday with Rachael Ray!
{Photo: Tata Donne}

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Simply Stated: Bold Black & Yellow

black and yellow party wedding

I’ve been adoring black, white, and bright yellow lately, so this color combo was my focus for a party inspiration board over at Simply Stated today. Head over there for all the details, and if there are any particular color palettes that you’d like to see turned into a new inspiration board, please let me know!

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REAL PARTIES: It’s a Twin Thing

twins baby shower

When I posted this baby shower idea last month, inspired by these adorable Thing 1 and Thing 2 onesies, I thought it was a fun idea, but Amy from Stem Parties truly knocked it out of the park! They say a picture is worth a thousand words, so I’ll just let you see for yourself… (more…)

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Think you’ve seen it all?

smock paper letterpress stationery

Think again! How creative are these cupcake burgers (or maybe “burger cupcakes”, as a reader pointed out) by cupcakequeen?!  Your vegetarian friends might even bite! Serve these up at your Labor Day BBQ this weekend…and be prepared for the compliments to come rolling in!

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SURPRISE GIVEAWAY: Smock Paper

WINNER UPDATE:
478 comments – wow! I had a feeling you guys were going to love this one :)  I wish I had a gift certificate for everyone, but – as always – we’ve got to narrow it down…so, the lucky random winner of the Smock shopping spree is: Heather Moss (commenter # 197), who said “If I won, I would get those adorable Horsey cards and turn them into birth announcements for my brother and sister-in-law’s new baby who will be born in October. Awesome stuff — saved to Delicious!” Congrats, Heather!

smock paper letterpress stationery

We have a fun new giveaway going on today and I think you guys are going to LOVE it! It’s a $100 Shopping Spree from the wonderfully stylish, contemporary, and eco-friendly letterpress company: Smock Paper. Smock has gorgeous letterpress designs for everything from custom wedding invitations to social notes and party invitations to beautiful gift wrap! And on the eco-friendly front, they’re actually the very first print shop in the U.S. to offer printing on luxury bamboo paper!

smock paper letterpress stationery

Pictured above: stylish social notes by Smock. Pictured below: chic party invitations – perfect for baby showers and kids’ birthday parties! (More designs & details on how to enter the giveaway after the jump.) (more…)

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Labor Day: Patriotic Beach House

modern twist silicone doileez

Because Labor Day, Memorial Day and Independence Day all fall in or near summer, these holidays offer a great opportunity to incorporate beach-inspired elements into your party decor. You can really use any type of party theme you want for Labor Day in particular, but patriotic or all-white themes seem to be the most popular, so today I’m going to share a patriotic theme with some fun “beach house” elements thrown in the mix.

And because Labor Day also was created to celebrate the hard worker and give them a day of rest, it’s also important not to stress yourself out if you’re playing host/hostess, so everything pictured here is quick and easy – no labor-intensive centerpieces that will have you working ’round the clock on your weekend off! Scroll down for more details…

modern twist silicone doileez

The beverage table is one place I always like to have some fun… An easy way to make a cool display is to serve drinks with stylish packaging. The new Sparkling drink by Hansen’s comes in a cool silvery-white can, and the Blueberry-Pomegranate flavor has touches of red and blue – so it’s a ready-made patriotic drink!  To go the extra mile, tie a straw to each can using red raffia or ribbon and line them up in neat rows.

modern twist silicone doileez

(more…)

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Harvey Wallbanger Cupcakes

Galliano Harvey Wallbanger Cupcakes

The Harvey Wallbanger Cake is one of my all-time favorite types of cakes – my mom makes them every Christmas and I can pretty much polish the entire thing off by myself (which is probably not a good thing…but sometimes you just can’t help it!).  Anyways, I was excited to come across these yummy-looking Harvey Wallbanger cupcakes in cupcakequeen‘s flickr gallery recently. The recipe is from the book Cupcakes from the Cake Doctor by Anne Byrn ($11.16 at Amazon). I’m thinking this is going to have to be a new addition to the library…

P.S. How cute is the presentation with the little straws?!

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Mozi = Love

shop mozi

I stumbled upon the MOZI website yesterday and am smitten with their products, to say the least!  Seriously…did you ever think that olive oil decanters (pictured above) could be this dreamy?!  And pictured below, just a few of the very many fabulous tea towel designs

shop mozi

And guess what…there’s much more!  MOZI offers 3 core collections based on pattern – the colorful, mod Secret Garden collection (which most of the above tea towels and the olive oil decanter on the right fall into), the Casablanca collection (red, white, and blue motifs), and a pretty Botanical Australia collection.

Pictured below: Secret Garden mugs, placemats, and oven mitts and aprons

shop mozi

(more…)

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Simply Stated: Modern-twist

modern twist silicone doileez

Modern-twist really does crank out some amazing home & dining products! Check out today’s Simply Stated: Celebrations post – Modern-twist: Innovative Product Design – for a closer look at their contemporary collections.

Pictured above: clever Doileez surface covers – and pictured below: 5 favorites from the super-artistic Modern-twist Placemat designs: (more…)

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Handmade Block Print Napkins

atelier lzc placemats

These artistic, hand-printed cotton napkins by Jessica Gonacha would make a lovely & unique hostess or housewarming gift – or a creative addition to your own kitchen! $30/set of 4 at Indie Fixx Shop.

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Gorgeous Paper Placemats

atelier lzc placemats

…absolutely loving these fabulous Jardins Japonais and Fruits Deguises paper placemats from French design house Atelier LZC!  At $20 & $25 per set of 8 though, I might be more apt to frame these and hang them as art – or decorate with them in other ways that might go a little further (wrapping vases, creating table runners, etc).  Available at bunnymaxwell.com.

atelier lzc placemats

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The Recipe Box: New Additions

s'mores recipe

We just added a bunch of yummy new recipes from some fabulous cookbooks to The Recipe Box!

On the Desserts & Treats front: (pictured above and below)
All-Grown-Up S’mores
Caramel Nut Popcorn
Bread Pudding with Chocolate Chunks and Bananas
Gorgeous Caramel and Cream Layer Cake
Better-than-classic Butterscotch Pudding
…and more!

dessert recipes

And on the Appetizers & Entrees front: (more…)

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