Inspiring Celebrations Since 2006

Eight Cool Octopus-Inspired Finds

octopus cups

Is it just me, or has there been a noticeable trend in Octopus-inspired products lately? You can find everything from vinyl wall graphics to laptop sleeves to baby onesies donning tentacle-clad motifs these days! Here are 8 cool “octopus design” finds that fall in the entertaining & home accessories categories:

octopus vase and dish scrubbers

1. Octopi Cup by Cake ($15 each at Feel More Human)

2. Mod Octopus Vase/Pitcher by Dovetail ($40 at Feel More Human)

3. Octopus Soap & Scrubbers by AnimalHouse ($5.99 each at Kitchen Kapers)

4. Sucker For You Letterpress Card by Hello! Lucky ($4.50 at Luxe Paperie)

(more…)

Share it:

Mixed Media Fun: Oliver Appetizer Plates

oliver appetizer plates

These new Oliver Appetizer Plates from cb2 are so random & fun! I love it when kitchen & dining products step outside the box like this… mixed media black & white hand sketches of little “doodle dudes” with color photos on slim rectangular white plates. Great conversation starters at your next party… or a fun hostess gift idea for the design-forward party guru! ($2.95 each at cb2)

oliver appetizer plates

Pictured above: doodle dude + green olive. Pictured below: doodle dudes + champagne cork & food/tooth pick =) (more…)

Share it:

French Circus Baby Shower Details

French Circus Baby Shower Theme

Complete details from the French Circus Baby Shower (or “Cirque du Bebe“) that I styled for Tisha Campbell-Martin in July are now up in the HWTM Party Themes section… click here to check it out!

French Circus Baby Shower Theme

There were sooo many details to cover on this party, and the text is running pretty long as it is, so if you still have questions on anything please feel free to ask them here. Also – downloadable templates for the custom signs are coming soon! =)

P.S. You can also view the entire (& extensive!) photo album from this party – including the guests – on the HWTM Facebook page.

Share it:

What’s for Lunch? Funky Cuteness!

funky lunch - kids sandwich ideas

Kids bored with lunch? Get ready for a serious dose of creative juice that they’re sure to love! Funky Lunch has an entire gallery of artistic sandwich creations – from Hello Kitty to Sponge Bob and everything in between… there’s even a Grand Piano design with the top propped up!

funky lunch - kids sandwich ideas

These ideas are super cute for kids parties – or just anytime you want to make the little ones feel special. (I actually love the Flowers design at the top for adult tea parties or baby/bridal showers too!)

A few more favorites pictured below: Lion, Caterpillar, Crocodile, Giraffe, and of course… the Grand Piano (complete with keyboard & all)! (more…)

Share it:

All-Time Favorite Pie Recipes from BHG

best pie recipes

I was browsing BHG for some good end-of-summer treats and came across this mouth-watering All-Time Favorite Pie Recipes e gallery! The top picture (Black Raspberry Cream Pie) is what immediately caught my eye, but there are plenty of other tempting treats for all sorts of tastebuds – from fruit-lovers to choco-holics!

Pictured above: Black Raspberry Cream Pie featuring a classic graham cracker crust and cream cheese-raspberry filling; individual One-Handed Fried Pies filled with dried apricots, peaches, & apples, then topped with a dusting of powdered sugar; colorful Tropical Fruit Pie, which can be made with your favorite combo of tropical fruits. (I’m loving the colors in the kiwi, raspberry, strawberry & papaya combo pictured here though!)

best pie recipes (more…)

Share it:

SURPRISE GIVEAWAY: Gallery 19

Gallery 19 Giveaway - Entertaining

This week’s Surprise Giveaway is all about entertaining! It comes from Gallery 19 – a fabulous website for party lovers & hostesses of all sorts of occasions – from holidays to birthdays to everyday dinner parties and beyond!

There’s so much great stuff at Gallery 19 site…it was really hard to narrow down what to feature in this post! You’ll find everything from paper tableware, gift wrap, and gift ideas to stationery, serveware & home decor, and much more. And today they’re offering up a $100 Shopping Spree to a lucky HWTM reader to spend as they please on the Gallery 19 website!

Gallery 19 Giveaway - Entertaining

A few personal favorites are pictured above at below… At top: various hand-painted napkin rings, spreaders, and serving dishes that come in an array of fabulous colors! (more…)

Share it:

REAL PARTIES: Oh Boy! Gumball Shower

gumball theme baby shower ideas

This next Real Party is a colorful “Oh Boy! Baby Shower” from Ebony Sparkes, featuring fun details like gumball-filled vases and an adorable plush-lion-topped diaper cake. Read on for all the sweet details, as told by Ebony herself…

*****

“My friend Nicole and I were so excited to plan this baby shower for our dear friend Torrie.   Planning this shower was an absolute joy for us, as Torrie has always been a great friend.  She gave us complete range to do whatever we wanted and “Oh Boy” did we ever!

gumball theme baby shower ideas

We were inspired by Amy’s “Oh Baby” baby shower right here from the HWTM and added our own special touches, so we came up with the “Oh Boy Gumball Shower” theme. (more…)

Share it:

REAL PARTIES: A {Birth}Day at the Farm

farm barnyard birthday party ideas

This new Real Party feature actually comes from the winner of our Summer Entertaining ContestKara Allen! This is a farm/barnyard themed party she created for her son’s first birthday – and the adorable farm animal cakes caught my eye right away! Read on for all the details, as told by Kara herself…

*****

farm barnyard birthday party ideas

“I had a farm barnyard birthday party for my son’s first birthday last year. It was A LOT of fun! I had a blast planning it….I just love details! (more…)

Share it:

Summer Entertaining Contest – Winners!

circus birthday party ideas

Thanks so much to everyone that voted for the finalists in the Summer Entertaining Contest on Facebook! After a week of voting, the first prize goes to… Kara Allen – for her adorable, ultra-colorful Circus/Carnival Birthday Party. Congrats, Kara – and great job! (For more great party ideas from Kara, check out her blog – Kara’s Party Ideas.)

And the 2nd winner – a randomly selected contest voter – is Tiffany Hausdorf. Congrats, Tiffany! Hope you enjoy your spa set!

circus birthday party ideas

Check out more pics of Kara’s Circus/Carnival Party below…. (more…)

Share it:

DIY: BIG Feather Tree Centerpieces

feather tree centerpieces

There were 2 main types of centerpieces at last month’s French Circus Baby Shower – “feather trees” and an “eclectic groupings”, and today I’m going to cover the DIY details for the feather trees. These are actually one of my favorite types of centerpieces to make – and they’re surprisingly quick & easy! I used a smaller version of these at the Hip Hostess New York event last year, but since this party was outdoors in a bigger space, we opted for a larger feather plumes & taller vases this time so that they’d still make a strong visual impact within the setting.

In the centerpieces pictured here, we used 19-23″ ostrich plumes and 28″ eiffel tower vases, then embellished the centerpieces with ribbon and cool acrylic strands pulled from a “Hoops Beaded Curtain“, which was also used to decorate the cabana area. (only $19.99 per curtain – and one goes a long way!)

feather tree centerpieces

To help combat the surprisingly strong wind factor in the backyard setting, we used “earthquake gum” to secure each feather tree to a decorative “base” made from an acrylic silver charger plate with translucent aqua vase gems hot-glued all the way around the edge. The vase gems matched the party’s color palette and added a substantial amount of weight to the plate.

feather tree centerpieces

Here are all the DIY details for the feather trees: (more…)

Share it:

DIY: Paper Treat Cones + Display

paper treat cones DIY

“Treat Cones” are such a fun way to display candy & other goodies at a party. They’re easy to make and can be tailored to pretty much any party theme or color palette, so the sky’s the limit on the style!

The cones pictured here are from a French Circus-themed baby shower that I styled last month. We used zebra-striped wrapping paper, Crunch ‘n Munch (yum!), bright yellow Banana Heads Candy, and 6.75″ black and white shallow vases for these particular displays, but you can apply the same basic concept to any theme you like…

Here are the DIY details: (more…)

Share it:

SURPRISE GIVEAWAY: Lisa Leonard Designs {Handmade Jewelry}

lisa leonard jewelry designs

Winner update: This giveaway is now closed. Thanks so much to everyone that entered! And the 3 lucky winners are… Commenters #50Jessica, #462Michele, and #260Eveline. Congrats, ladies!

*****

I’m so excited to share this week’s Surprise Giveaway with you! For those of you that love a thoughtful/sentimental gift idea – whether for yourself or someone else – the handmade jewelry and other sweet things by Lisa Leonard Designs should be right up your alley! Even better – Lisa is offering up $50 Gift Certificates this week to THREE lucky hwtm readers!

You’ll find custom necklaces, inspired necklaces, bracelets, and more at Lisa Leonard, for everyone from mom to sis to BFF. Each piece is hand-cut, hammered, antiqued and polished sterling silver.

lisa leonard jewelry designs

Pictured above: a few necklace designs, including the adorable – and brand new – Laundry Line Necklace! How cute is that?! (more…)

Tags:
Share it:

NEW! Barbie ♥ Jonathan Adler Collection

Barbie Jonathan Adler Collection

If you saw the fabulous life-size Malibu Dream House that Jonathan Adler decked out for Barbie’s 50th Birthday Party earlier this year & liked what you saw…. good news! Several of the Adler’s Barbie-themed designs – which pair his signature style with Barbie’s signature color – are now available for purchase… and not just in the miniature department either!

There’s a definite retro-meets-contemporary vibe happening in the new Barbie ♥ Jonathan Adler collection… and I’m especially loving the bold Salad Plates and Tidbit Plates ($78 – $98 / set of 4) and Malibu Candle, which (quite appropriately) features Malibu Beach essence and floral notes.

Barbie Jonathan Adler Collection

If you like the vibe of the salad & tidbit plates, you’ll probably also love Adler’s fun, striped vanity canisters, which come in: Glitter, Peroxide, Eyelashes, and Dolls designs: (more…)

Share it:

Summer Entertaining Contest: 5 Finalists {Voting Begins on Facebook!}

summer entertaining contest finalists

First of all… WOW! We had some truly amazing entries in the Facebook Summer Entertaining Contest… and WAY more than 5 stand-out parties, so let me tell you this was seriously a hard one to narrow down to just 5 finalists. We had several different people help with the process of narrowing it down though, and the top 5 picks of each person were often very different – so the finalists you see here are the parties that had the most overlap amongst everyone’s lists.

These 5 parties are an eclectic mix – from birthday parties to baby showers to 4th of July… but all of them show great creativity, originality, relevance to summer, & good old fashioned effort! Here they are, in random order: (more…)

Share it:

Modern Moroccan-Inspired Dessert Buffet

Moroccan Inspired Candy Buffet by Amy Atlas

Amy Atlas has done it again! Her recent Moroccan-Inspired Dessert Buffet is quite possibly one of my favorite dessert buffets she’s created yet… not only because of the fabulous pattern that is incorporated throughout the entire thing – but also due to the vibrant aqua and orange color palette. Yum! It’s ultra-contemporary, yet warm & inviting all at the same time.

Moroccan Inspired Candy Buffet by Amy Atlas

The work of some other very talented creatives went into this visual feast as well…

The gorgeous custom pattern (and inspiration for the entire buffet) was created by Erica Bohanon Miller of Thoughtful Day, and the Moroccan mum centerpieces are by Jessie Weidinger of Rountree (more…)

Share it:

Black Box Wines – “You Got Boxed” Contest

Black Box Wines

For my fellow wine lovers (and those of you good with a video camera!):
This summer Black Box Wines launched the “You Got Boxed” contest to challenge its fans to share boxed wines with their friends. For a chance to win, contestants secretly serve guests Black Box Wines (in lieu of traditional bottled wine) and capture their reaction on camera when the box is revealed. There is a monthly $2,000 prize and a final grand prize of a whopping $10,000!

Black Box Wines (more…)

Share it:

HWTM Facebook Contest: Summer & Outdoor Entertaining

hostess
The HWTM Facebook community has always been so warm & welcoming – and we’ve been wanting to do something to thank the FB fans and help showcase all the great creativity they’ve been posting lately!

So… last week we launched our first-ever HWTM Facebook contest, and there are 2 ways to win: 1. by submitting party photos related to “summer entertaining” to the Fan Photos section, and 2. by simply voting for your favorite of the 5 finalists. Tomorrow (Thursday, 8/13) is the last day to submit photos for the contest and then the finalists will be announced and voting will start on Friday! Get more details here.

Both of the prizes up for grabs: home spa packages worth over $300 each! Each prize includes premium skincare products from MD Confidential, salon brand haircare products, and a light-weight adult coverup by Little Giraffe.

Tags:
Share it:

Roy’s Aloha Kitchen Challenge

Roy's Aloha Kitchen Challenge

Last week, my husband and I attended the “Aloha Kitchen Challenge” at Roy’s Restaurant in La Jolla, which felt a little bit like experiencing an Iron Chef event first hand (or an episode of Hell’s Kitchen where the head chef is a whole lot nicer!).

The “Aloha Kitchen Challenge” is actually a gourmet competition that Internationally-acclaimed Chef Roy Yamaguchi has been hosting at different Roy’s locations throughout the country (and more are in the works if you’d like to attend one of them!).

Roy's Aloha Kitchen Challenge

3 culinary students local to the area are partnered with top chefs from local restaurants, who act as their mentors for the event, then they compete for the chance to win a year-long internship with Roy’s expert chefs. The students were all from the Art Institute of San Diego: Grant Toraason, Athena Gilson and Bruce Ricketts – and they were paired with top chefs: Jason Knibb of NINE-TEN; Bernard Guillas of Marine Room; Brian Malarkey, of Oceanaire; and Garrett Mukogawa of Roy’s.

Roy's Aloha Kitchen Challenge

Guests of the event are treated to a fun – and highly creative – 5-course meal, along with champagne and wine pairings for each course, if desired. The 2nd, 3rd, and 4th courses were created by the 3 students, and all of the dinner guests + some special local celebrity judges voted on their favorite dish at the end of the meal.

Here are the 3 contenders… how great is the presentation on each of these dishes?! (more…)

Share it:

REAL PARTIES: Fairyland Birthday Party

fairy birthday party theme

This adorable “Fairyland Birthday Party” was created Adriana Arabia by for her daughter Isa’s 6th birthday. Here are all the magical details, as told by Adriana!

****

“My daughter is fascinated by fairies and I wanted to throw a memorable birthday party for her on her 6th birthday because it will be her last birthday as a single child and I guess I was feeling a bit guilty for what was about to come…

As soon as we had decided on a theme I started searching the web for ideas and inspiration and came across the fairy birthday party that HWTM organized. It happened to have the same color scheme I had planned and I totally fell in love.

fairy birthday party theme

I wanted to do everything from the invitations so I went to my local Michael’s store and bought card-stock paper, stickers and other supplies. (more…)

Share it:

SURPRISE GIVEAWAY: Cherry & East

Cherry and East - DwellStudio tableware

This week’s Surprise Giveaway is guaranteed to make a lucky someone’s table look extra fabulous!

It’s from a super stylish shop called Cherry & East that’s full of all sorts of cool & contemporary finds for the kitchen and table and beyond. The winner gets $200 to spend on their choice of mix & match tableware (placemats, napkins, coasters and runners) from the ultra-modern DwellStudio collection!

Cherry and East - DwellStudio tableware

Several shots of the DwellStudio table linens are pictured above and below… (more…)

Tags:
Share it:

Making Lemonade…Cookies for a Cause

alex's lemonade stand cookies

As a sugar-lover with a soft spot for a good cause, the pairing of these 2 attributes in a venture always seems especially sweet! For example…

The Flour Pot – an adorable cookie boutique – has teamed up with Alex’s Lemonade Stand – a foundation working to aid in the fight against childhood cancer – on this adorable lemon cookie gift set. ($25/set of 6)  Each set features 6 individually wrapped lemon shaped cookies, and a portion of the proceeds from the sale of each box is donated to Alex’s Lemonade Stand. (more…)

Share it:

Lemon-Lime Candy Buffet

candy buffet

Gretchen from b.a.s.h.ful Events sent over some pictures of this adorable Lemon & Lime Candy Buffet they created recently… how cute is this?! There’s so much great DIY inspiration in these pics – from the cute display tags that all feature the same fun pattern to the way everything was individually wrapped so that it all coordinated!

candy buffet

For the favor/candy containers, white takeout boxes (available at craft stores like Michaels) were embellished with the phrase “How SWEET it is to be loved by you!” along with the baby shower date & info.

I also loved how she displayed and individually wrapped the lollipops with tissue & coordinating ribbon… (more…)

Share it: