Month: May 2014

Unique Centerpiece Alternatives

Uploaded to Pinterest via EveryBodys Buddy

 

Whether you are a budget bride or just looking to have unique touches throughout your wedding décor, centerpieces are a great way to put your creative touches on the day. Same goes for any party or event. You are not obligated to have a flower arrangement. Feel free to opt for something more unique and if you are on a tight budget here are some unique ideas you could opt for that can help stretch your dollar.

Photo found on weddbook.com

Do any of you brides or grooms have a collection of some sort? Whether you have always collected tea cups to baseball cards that is a part of you that you can share with your wedding guests that will make your day truly unique to you as a couple. Maybe you have a large collection of lanterns, or you make your own candles. Incorporate them into your décor and use them as your centerpieces.

Photo found on indulgy.com

A great tip for items that don’t necessarily share the same color is that as long as you have a group of the same items, no matter what color they are individually they go together as a group.

Lanterns or birdcages make for a great display at a garden tea party or wedding. They are simple yet eye catching centerpieces that are simple to set up and you can even insert a candle inside them for some ambiance or weave some inexpensive greens throughout to make them really pop.

Photo via ReadMakeDo.com

Pinwheels are really great at providing a whimsical, nostalgic feel to your wedding or event. There are many that you can purchase that are ready-made, or if you are so inclined DIY them. Have your bridesmaids over and treat them to some vino and get pin wheeling. Take advantage of the family members that are offering to help out for your big day and let them in on the DIY fun. The more the merrier!

You can check out this great DIY tutorial from ReadMakeDo HERE and get all of the easy steps so you can have a pinwheel party of your own.   Make sure to have some by the Photo Booth for some really fun theme inspired photo booth props!

Once you have assembled or purchased your pinwheels, simply place them in pretty vases, jars, any containers you have on hand or take a trip to Goodwill and find some for dirt cheap. You now have a very easy, very inexpensive, and very brilliant centerpiece.

If you’ve got a green thumb, or just want to host a green event, use herbs as centerpieces. If you have an herb garden then you are going to love this idea! Again, find some pretty pots either lying around your shed or garage and go to town. You can paint the pots, stencil on your wedding date, create a monogram for them and so much more. Your guests could then take them home as your favors and every time they pull some basil for their pizza, or some mint for their evening summer mojito they will think of you and your day.

Hope these alternative options for centerpieces will inspire you and get your creative juices flowing.

Author: L. Fulton-EventsbyL

 

How to Arrange Flowers Like A Pro

Flowers play a major role in all of the events and weddings Photo Booth of the Stars are honored to be a part of. They really help to enhance spaces and can make any venue instantly become beautiful with bright and cheerful colors.

You don’t have to be a florist to put together a decent floral arrangement that will impress your guests at your next party or event. Even if you aren’t planning a party put together a nice bouquet for yourself. If you have been feeling down about something, or stuck in a rut, place some fresh flowers around your home or office and every time you look in them they will have a way of making you feel cheerful.

The key to making wonderful floral arrangements is having an array of flower sizes. You need to have equal portions of small, medium, and large flowers so everything is symmetrical. Once you have selected the container, vase, or vessel you are going to use to hold the flowers you need one more thing. Floral foam. If you are using real flowers for your arrangement you will want to pick up some wet floral foam which soaks up water like a sponge. This will help your fresh flowers to not only open up if they have not yet already, but last.

You want to trim off all of the leaves from the floral stems. If the leaves are soaking in the water it will cause bacteria to grow and decrease your beautiful flowers shelf life. Not what we are wanting, so be sure to take time to remove those leaves before you get going. Once you have completed the leaf removal, place your first flower in the center of the floral foam in the middle of the container. This determines the height of your arrangement and the center flower should always remain the tallest flower in height.

After you have placed the tallest, largest flowers around your piece it is time to distribute the medium flowers.   Keep in mind that the arrangement should look good from all angles, especially if you are using it as a centerpiece. The best way to accomplish this is to place an event amount of flowers in the front, back, and both sides. Don’t space the flowers too close together, leave room to scatter your filler flowers, branches, leaves, or whatever you have dedicated to fill in the space between the flowers.

If you have any leftover blank space you can fill those in by loosely placing some Spanish moss in there. This really fills it in nicely and a little goes a long way with this stuff.

There are millions of tutorials, tips, and tricks for flower arranging and the best way to learn is practice. Get to know all of the different types of flowers, and textures. You don’t have to spend a ton of money either. A very inexpensive bouquet from the grocery store can look like a million bucks if it is properly arranged. The best part is that you created that beauty all on your own. That is truly something to smile about.

Go ahead and try your hand at arranging. Check out this awesome tutorial from Decorating Ideas Made Easy where we grabbed all of the helpful photos in this post and will help you along the way HERE.

Photo Credit: Decorating Made Easy

Author: L. Fulton-EventsbyL

Easy Memorial Day Party Planning

The start of summer is officially marked by Memorial Day! Gatherings at forest preserves, backyard barbeques and pool parties are a few ways Photo Booth of the Stars likes to celebrate this special holiday. Here are some of our tips to help you throw together a stress-free Memorial day party that is fun and entertaining for everyone.

Since Memorial Day is an honoring of all of the brave men and women who have fought for our country, patriotic décor is a must. Show off you American Pride with décor in red, white, and blue.

Image Found on househunt.com

We came across a lot of really cute patriotic wreathes on our good friend Pinterest. They all would make a great statement to guests arriving for your big celebration. Not only do they look great but they look like they would be very simple to put together and many of you may even have all of the supplies for them on hand.

We came across this DIY wreath above on Trusper posted by Chelsea West. Simply take some clothespins and spray paint them and clip them around a rounded hanger. Very simple and festive. If you have little ones around, let them paint the clothespins for you instead of spray-painting. That should keep them busy long enough for you to whip up your signature party drink! Cheers~

Image via The Weary Chef

If you are looking for something cool and refreshing make these Strawberry White Wine spritzers from the Weary Chef! They don’t contain a whole lot of alcohol in them so they are a great option if you are going to be sipping all day long. Also since they are low calorie you don’t have to feel guilty indulging with these.

They also mentioned that you could replace the wine with lemonade to make it a kid friendly version. Get the details and complete recipe for them HERE!

Image Found on stonegable.blogspot.com

Plan ahead and give your guests some fun outdoor entertaining things to do. Water games are always a fun treat for all ages and hopefully this weekend will be warm enough so we can try out some of these games from Parenting.com’s list of 11 Water Games that kids and adults alike will love.

Image via Parenting.com via Veer

Here are just a few from the list:

Jump water: Run a strong stream from a garden hose back and forth like a snake under your child’s feet, allowing him to jump over it. With more kids, turn it into a competition: Whoever’s feet don’t get drenched wins!

Liquid limbo: Use the stream from a water hose as the stick for a high-stakes game of limbo.

Ball blast: Use ropes to create a circle or square on your lawn. Place balls of varying sizes and weights inside. Give your child a hose and challenge her to push the balls out with the water in less than a minute.

Check out the complete list here and make a splash at your next party!  Cheers and happy planning!

 

Author:  L. Fulton-EventsbyL

Tips For Planning your Graduation Party:

Give your graduate a party that will be the highlight of their achievement! With a little early planning and decision making you can get your grad off to a powerful start.

Found on partycity.com

Schedule the Party Appropriately

While it’s only natural to be anxious to celebrate this big milestone, remember that all of the other graduates are excited to as well. This in mind a lot of guests/friends may not be able to attend the bash since they will all be busy commending their own. In addition, the grad will be missing out on their parties as well. Scheduling a few weeks out from the graduation ceremony should allow for the big “Graduation Party Rush” to subside and avoid any missing attendants.

Guest List

Sit down with the guest of honor and make a list of who they would like to attend. Not only can this be a special moment to share together but this will allow them to voice their opinion of who can come and make the day that much more meaningful to them. It is important to get this list started as soon as you can because it will likely change a few times.

Invitations

Found on customcandybarwrapper.com

Since it is such a busy time to throw a party be sure to send out save the dates as soon as possible so your guests don’t make other plans prior. If you have essential guests that are out of town it is really important to give them as much notice as possible so they can make accommodations and arrangements as needed. An email form of save the dates is totally acceptable for this type of event.

Select your invitations that coordinate with the theme of the party. If you are having an at home cook out set the tone with a more casual invite.

Found on etsy.com

Go bold and highlight your grad’s school colors.

Found on stylemepretty.com

Venue

It is very common for graduation parties to be thrown at the honorees home in open house style. That is a great option if you have ample space, seating, tables, and etc., to accommodate for your amount of guests.

Alternative Locations Include:

  1. Banquet Facilities
  2. Country Clubs
  3. Rental Homes
  4. Parks
  5. Health Clubs
  6. Apartment Complex or Subdivision Party Rooms
  7. Boats, Yachts, Charter Boats
  8. Hotels
  9. Theatres
  10. Churches
  11. Community Centers
  12. Swimming Pools
  13. Bowling Alleys
  14. Local Resort

Menu

Found on youvegottotastethis.myrecipes.com

Try and remember that some or even many of your visitors may be attending several different parties or open houses that same day. Your menu can be as unique as you want it to be. Some ideas to stand out include:

  • A pizza buffet
  • Serving brunch options like a quiche or casserole
  • Chili bar
  • Taco Bar

Decide what time your party is going to be held and if it is necessary to serve a meal or if it’s an afternoon get together you could certainly just serve appetizers, and dessert, or one or the other even.

Some alternative dessert options are cupcakes, s’mores, root beer floats, ice-cream bars, macaroons, and ice-cream bars will keep everyone cool.

Cheers!

 

Author:  L. Fulton-EventsbyL

Let’s Celebrate America’s Favorite Dessert With Photo Booth Of The Stars!

Photo booth of the Stars is happy to announce: It’s National Apple Pie Day! Sit back, enjoy a slice, and check out these fun facts and some recipes for good old apple pie!

Annie Schlechter/Woman’s Day

History of Pies via American Pie Council

  • Pie has been around since the ancient Egyptians. The first pies were made by early Romans who may have learned about it through the Greeks. These pies were sometimes made in “reeds” which were used for the sole purpose of holding the filling and not for eating with the filling.
  • The Romans must have spread the word about pies around Europe as the Oxford English Dictionary notes that the word pie was a popular word in the 14th century. The first pie recipe was published by the Romans and was for a rye-crusted goat cheese and honey pie.
    Frances Janisch/Woman’s Day
    • The early pies were predominately meat pies. Pyes (pies) originally appeared in England as early as the twelfth century. The crust of the pie was referred to as “coffyn”. There was actually more crust than filling. Often these pies were made using fowl and the legs were left to hang over the side of the dish and used as handles. Fruit pies or tarts (pasties) were probably first made in the 1500s. English tradition credits making the first cherry pie to Queen Elizabeth I.
    • Pie came to America with the first English settlers. The early colonists cooked their pies in long narrow pans calling them “coffins” like the crust in England. As in the Roman times, the early American pie crusts often were not eaten, but simply designed to hold the filling during baking. It was during the American Revolution that the term crust was used instead of coffyn.
    • Over the years, pie has evolved to become what it is today “the most traditional American dessert”. Pie has become so much a part of American culture throughout the years, that we now commonly use the term “as American as apple pie.”
Iain Bagwell/Woman’s Day

 

Now it’s time for some apple pie recipes. The first is compliments of Food.com “Home of the Home Cook.” The recipe is called Unbelievable apple pie… Photo Booth of the Stars might just have to make this one to believe it. Using a premade pie crust helps to make this a cinch to make. Get the recipe HERE and try one on for yourself.

Ann Stratton/Woman’s Day

 

These rustic little apple pies are adorable and would be the perfect compliment to any summer picnic or party. You could even individually wrap them and use them as wedding favors for a summer or fall wedding. They are elegant to look at and would make quite the impression for your guests. Everything tastes better when it is individualized! You can get the recipe for these little guys HERE on Woman’s Day.

BackForSecondsBlog

 

If you are not up for making a whole pie try out this single serving, skinny apple pie! That is something we can all appreciate! Get the recipe HERE.

Cheers to Apple Pie!

 

Author:  L. Fulton- EventsbyL

Mother’s Day Gift Ideas From Photo Booth of the Stars

Does mom have a sweet tooth?

Everyone loves to indulge in a treat every now and again and your mom definitely deserves a gourmet treat for mother’s day. After all she did spend years upon years raising you, it’s the least you could do.

Stop by a gourmet sweets shop and pick up something that looks as good as it will taste.  When she opens it she will be looking at a beautiful treat that shows you spent time carefully selecting it just for her. If you don’t have a shop nearby there are plenty of online stores that you can purchase from like:

Just to name a few.

If your mom has a sweet tooth but is watching her calories this time of year, an easy gift you can make your self is chocolate-covered strawberries. They are elegant, and a really fast treat for you to create. Everyone loves them and they pair oh so nicely with a bottle of bubbly!

Is She a Tea or Coffee Lover?

via Etsy by LittleBluNest

This handmade coffee mug cozy is the perfect gift for the tea or coffee loving mother. It’s outside of the box, protects her hands, and looks cute! It would make a nice surprise for the mom that receives different teas or coffees for every holiday gift. Switch it up!

via Etsy by SilverBlueberry

Here is another unexpected coffee lover gift. This ring is a coffee bean made into silver and soldered on top of a round band shaped out of sterling silver wire. It has a brushed, matte finish.

via Etsy by CoolBeanPerksCoffee

Get Mom a 3 month Gourmet Coffee subscription! You receive 2lb of the coffee of the month each month, for three months. The coffee is packaged in one pound bags so you can sample six different coffees in the course of your subscriptions. They even pack the coffee with “perks” which are their special goodies that range from candy, cookies, or nuts, and are always delicious.

 Is She Blessed With A Green Thumb?

Gardener’s Supply Company

If your mom is into gardening and does it often than she would definitely appreciate this puddle-proof field bag from Gardener’s Supply Company. It’s designed by gardeners for gardeners and it has a waterproof bottom so you don’t ever have to worry about the contents inside getting wet. It has plenty of pockets also so that you can stay organized.

Is She In need of pampering?

Gourmet Gift Baskets

If mom is in need for a little R&R and pampering this Sunday, she will love this beautiful basket. Inside there are exquisite spa products from the San Francisco Soap company. The basket contains everything she needs to be pampered, including soothing body lotion, moisturizing shower gel, and reviving body mist, and much more to make mom fee special.

Is She A Health Fanatic?

Jawbone Small UP24 via My Crazy Good Life

Here’s a great gift idea for the fitness-loving mama we found thanks to Becca at My Crazy Good Life -The Jawbone Small UP24. You can pick it up at Best Buy and it is apparently the cat’s meow. It monitors you to find both good and bad patterns in your sleep, exercise, and even diet. It has an alarm that will wake you from a nap or full night’s sleep just at the right time in your sleep cycle, which will have you feeling your best all day!   Now, what mom wouldn’t love you for that?

 

Author:  L. Fulton-EventsbyL

 

 

Cinco de Mayo Party Ideas From Photo Booth of the Stars

Alright Chicagoland who’s ready to dust off their margarita pitcher and pretend they are in Mexico?! Photo Booth of the Stars sure is! We are over this cold and rainy weather and ready to celebrate the warm weather that is yet to come, it IS coming, right???

If you don’t have your fiesta party plans in order then this post is perfect for you.

Quick Cinco de Mayo lesson via the History Channel

Cinco de Mayo—or the fifth of May—commemorates the Mexican army’s 1862 victory over France at the Battle of Puebla during the Franco-Mexican War (1861-1867). A relatively minor holiday in Mexico, in the United States Cinco de Mayo has evolved into a celebration of Mexican culture and heritage, particularly in areas with large Mexican-American populations. Cinco de Mayo traditions include parades, mariachi music performances and street festivals in cities and towns across Mexico and the United States.

How to celebrate

Margaritas of course!

Photo via Kitchn

We found this recipe for Pure Mexican Margaritas over at the Kitchn. Don’t they look so pretty and delicious and festive?

Pure Mexican Margarita

Serves 2

2 ounces (1/4 cup) tequila 1 ounce (2 tablespoons) freshly squeezed lime juice 3/4 ounce (1 tablespoon plus 1 1/2 teaspoons) agave nectar or 1/2 ounce (1 tablespoon) Simple Syrup  3/4 ounce (1 tablespoon plus 1 1/2 teaspoons) cold water 1 slice lime (sliced crosswise into a wheel) 3 tablespoons kosher salt, optional

Shake the tequila, lime juice, agave nectar, and water vigorously with ice and strain into a chilled rocks glass or coupe filled with ice. Garnish with the wheel of lime.

Optional garnish: before filling the glass with ice, moisten the rim and dip it in a dish of kosher salt.

No Cinco de Mayo party will be complete without these margaritas. Check out the entire post on these delightfully delicious drinks HERE.

 

Photo Credit: Catch My Party

Party Décor

Let the warmth and cheerfulness of Mexico take over your party decorations. Choose bright and happy colors to spread throughout your venue or party location.

Festive Activities

Without a doubt a Piñata is a necessity and no fiesta would be complete without one! If you are sticking with tradition cram one full of candy, toys, and small items that your guests will love!

Photo Credit: Apartment Therapy

If you are hosting an adult only party then check out some really fun piñata stuffer ideas from Apartment Therapy. Some really fun ideas include gift cards, movie tickets, bottle openers, gum, and more.

A quick tip from Photo Booth of the Stars is to throw in some shooters!

Menu

Don’t just limit yourself to chips and dip!

Photo Credit: Yahoo Shine

Make some Easy Chicken Taco Bowls!

Photo Credit: SmithsonianMag.com

If you want to venture out a bit and try some foods from different regions, Mole Poblano is a wonderful dish to try out!

Check out the recipe at Smithsonian and enjoy!

Photo Booth Props

 

Photo via: G is For Gift

These awesome photo booth props are a must have from G is for Gift! Love it!

Happy Cinco De Mayo to you all from Photo Booth of the Stars!  Cheers!

Author:  L. Fulton-EventsbyL