friday faves: november 14

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It’s time for our #FridayFaves roundup!

As always, Friday means it’s time to share our favourite things from the Internet this week, and let me tell you, there’s a LOT of stunners out there – hard to pick just five!

Here’s what we loved this week:

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1. The most amazing machine in the world, a cupcake ATM.

2. This gorgeous cake, and more photos from this pretty modern palette from The Frosted Petticoat.

3. This clever and classic looking popcorn bar from Lark & Linen.

4. Another popcorn bar (clearly I’m obsessed!), this time a gorgeous gourmet one by calligraphy pros, featured on The Perfect Palette.

5. This adorable and super-fun superhero birthday cake from Queen of Bees.

And that’s it! Nothing like some pretty inspiration to jump start your weekend!

friday faves: august 22

header friday favesHappy Friday my darlings. Can we side note briefly to address that as I wrote that my mind automatically went to this movie:

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I know why but also I don’t know why. I just wanted share.

ANYWAYS, here’s what we loved this week:

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1. This pretty (and personal!) diy confetti from Femme Fraiche

2. This adorable Fantastic Mr. Fox themed birthday for the sweetest little boy on 100 Layer Cakelet

3. These easy diy treat boxes from Make And Tell, perfect for sharing some goodies with your besties, and customizing for any party!

4. This stunning Mid-Summer Night’s Dream inspired wedding cake from Rosalind Miller

5. This gorgeous rustic wedding with the perfect touch of elegance from Rock My Wedding

 

I’m still swooning over these finds. I think Friday Faves is my new fave thing. Have a great week Party Girls!

 

 

friday faves: august 15

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We spend our week surrounded by some amazing and talented social media peers, and it seems unfair to not share some of the projects we’ve found on our hunt for cool recipes, products, and events for inspiration. We get to showcase some of our favourite bloggers and party-planners on social media, but it’s so hard to showcase everybody, and they all deserve to be recognized for how beautiful they’re making every day!

That’s why we decided on a new special series called “Friday Faves”. Every Friday we’ll share a little round up of what inspired us all week, and give you the chance to head to their blogs to check them out. It’s only fair for you to be as in love with them as we are, after all.

So for the first faves post, here’s what we love this week:

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1. These crazy amazing delicious sinful Raspberry Peach Sorbet + Kombucha Floats from Edible Perspective

2. This adorable and mega-fun looking Banana Split Cake from an equally sweet photoshoot on Style Me Pretty

3. The pretty styling genius of this sorbet coloured dessert table at the anniversary party for Minted & Vintage

4. This delicious new breakfast bar idea that might need to be a feature in all my mornings ever, a bagel bar with tasty toppings from 100 Layer Cakelet

5. This super creative idea for serving some (healthy-ish!) summer treats in a pineapple boat from The House That Lars Built

 

Get inspired with some of these ideas and give one a try! Happy weekend!

celebrate: mx party

MX Party Header

Well good morning Party Girls! We are in the middle of planning a pretty amazing (if we do say so ourselves) birthday party for a special little girl this weekend, and trust us when we say we are functioning on very little sleep. This is where we’d insert hashtag partyplannerproblems, but we’re too classy for hashtags in blogs 😉

ANYWAYS, before we get to sharing all those fun details next week, we had another party on our sleeves. This one is an oldie but a goodie. Last summer Meal Exchange, a non-profit organization committed to changing food systems on university/college campuses and communities across Canada, celebrated a big year with three major milestones, marking the anniversary of their creation, the first National Student Food Summit, and their time as a registered charity. To celebrate, I (Ashley) got to help them plan an anniversary party, and it was SO MUCH FUN!

We wanted to take a break from our hectic crafting for the weekend and share some fun photos of a past event. Plus, it makes us nostalgic for summer, which is perfect on this cloudy rainy Toronto day.

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First of all, how amazing is this venue? We were super fortunate to partner with the Centre for Social Innovation in the Annex and host the party here. It was the perfect industrial [okay super hipster] vibe for a university student driven, local food movement loving group of people.

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The balloon raffle is a sweet personal favourite of mine, because I love the idea of little surprises in balloons. Basically we had about 25 helium balloons with numbers inside, and for $10 guests could buy a balloon, pop it (it was violent and amazing and perfect), and they’d win whatever prize corresponded with that number. It got pretty intense. As a charity event our budget was pretty slim (as in non existent) so we were able to get a bunch of amazing sponsors donate super cool prizes.

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We also partnered with some amazing local artisans from Etsy who donated locally sourced and handmade products for our goody bags. We had gluten free/nut free snacks, handmade soaps, cool Meal Exchange swag, and more, it was adorable.

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Okay, now I’m starving. The only thing about planning an event for a bunch of socially conscious food-movement activists is the menu. We were super lucky to team up with a catering company that had a lot of experience with vegetarian/gluten free/allergen safe menu planning, so we had a lot of really delicious options. And it gave me an excuse to have those little food labels made. I am a sucker for food labels.

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A major part of the event programming was taking the opportunity to thank all the members and volunteers. There was a little award ceremony to recognize some outstanding people who work hard to promote sustainable food practices and Meal Exchange, which was a such a fun and special way to honour the night and celebrate the anniversary aspect.

For me, spending my summer working with these amazing people, laughing and cramped into a tiny office in a gorgeous old building downtown with no air conditioning and full of art and birds (yup, there was a floor bird sanctuary) and designers and weird caves (okay, coolest place ever right?) was so inspiring. The event took place on the Saturday evening of three day student conference, where we woke up at 5am and went to bed at 1am. I didn’t sleep for over 24 hours before party day. It was amazing.

Richmond Collage

This is the amazing office building I got to work out of. How inspiring is all that greenery? There’s even a rooftop garden. That is the magic of 401 Richmond.

So how about that? All in all it was a super fun party. I tried to include the links below for the vendors, but if I forgot anybody I’m so sorry. Make sure you stay tuned for this weekend’s party craziness, and have an amazing day!

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#internsolutions (BROKE THE HASHTAG RULE!)

Vendors:

Balloons – Ballontrix

Catering – Delightfully Yours 

Venue – CSI Annex

Want to see more photos? Head here 🙂

countdown party – new years eve printables

How are you celebrating your New Years? Over the years I’ve managed to spend New Years pretty much every way possible. I’ve celebrated in dark bars, family rooms, classy lounges, exotic beaches, and on my couch in my pyjamas. I don’t think I could pick a favourite way to spend the countdown; there’s something special about all of them!

Of course, since I love hosting parties, I know the stress that goes into party planning for New Years. Especially if you’re hosting a countdown party. If you’ve never been to one, countdown parties usually start around 11pm and go all night. You ring in the New Year exhausted, exhilarated, and revved to go. It’s simultaneously the most fun and most tiring party you’ll go to all year. Anyways, a friend asked me to make some party decorations for her countdown party this year, and since I can’t be there in person I thought I’d be there in spirit via some fun, easy party printables. So if you have a party starting in an hour and you’re at a loss for how to transform your party room, take a page out of Becca’s book and spend the next half hour cutting and pasting these quick, easy, and fun (if I do say so myself!) decorations.

New Year Banner 

I told Bec to set this up on her champagne table for the countdown toast, but you could put it anywhere!

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R Banner

Cheers Drink Labels

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Cheers Food Lables

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Bubbly Bar Drink Table Sign

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2am cookies

I have this horrible compulsive problem where I underestimate the time projects will take me. I know I don’t suffer alone, but sometimes I just cannot accept how horrible I am at time management. I had a million blog posts planned but I had to follow up with this year’s Thanksgiving debacle because it seemed important to share with everybody how sometimes even the best laid plans…well, you know. 

As I mentioned in the last post about how I overachieve Thanksgiving every year, I said I’d contribute cranberry sangria for dinner. This seemed like an amazing idea because a) who doesn’t love wine and fruit? and b) it seemed adorably festive and appropriate. This was before I researched whether cranberry sangria was a thing of course. I just assumed that hey, its a fruit and hey, there’s a juice for that so really it’s gotta be possible. 

I immediately noticed a problem upon researching recipes. Apparently cranberry sangria is some sort of fancy holiday concoction created by professional bartenders and people with a lot more alcohol skills than me. For example, as if I could find a recipe that didn’t involve brandy. What is brandy?! Finally I got tired of feeling like a total loser in the liquor store and I just put together a bunch of different recipes and worked it out. Surprisingly, Frankensteining the crap out of a bunch of alcohol has zero negative results and it tasted amazing, so I’m going to share it with you guys for your parties!

The Party Girl Cranberry Sangria

1 bottle of red wine * Side note, this sounds easy but hell it took FOREVER to find one that wouldn’t clash with all the cranberry I poured in there. I’m going to make your life a little easier because I’m a great person and say go to the California section in LCBO and track down a Zinfandel. There are a bunch that say Zinfandel White, but they’re pink. It makes zero sense and contributed to the ten whole minutes I spent staring at wine. Just don’t get that one. The best suggestion I can make is that I bought one called Dancing Bull Zinfandel and it was perfect, and didn’t seem like anything special so I’d say if you can find it in your LCBO, stick with that!

 

1 cup orange juice

5 cups cranberry juice * Completely of your choice, I used cranberry cocktail because I have no issue with whatever they put in it that makes it not 100% cranberries but I know some people aren’t into that so use your own preference!

1 cup (!!!) Triple Sec *Don’t judge me. 

1/2 cup fresh strawberries, hulled and sliced

1 green apple, cored and sliced (you can leave the skin on or take it off, whichever!)

1/2 sliced lime

1 sliced orange

 

Add all the ingredients together and pop it in the fridge for at least a couple hours. I think the longer you leave it the better, and five hours is always the suggested chill time, but who has time for that? I chilled mine for about two hours before we broke it open and it was still great, and refreshing!

 

Anyways it was a big hit, and pretty easy once the original searching was over. One suggestion then, don’t do what I did and serve it like this:

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Important tip: not all spoons are created equal.

I also decided that I couldn’t let last year’s cupcakes disappear into history along with the other nontraditional Thanksgiving desserts, so this year I decided to do some sugar cookies and decorate them. I’m going to post the recipe I use and some better tips in another blog about a birthday party I did because those cookies looked infinitely more professional, but I wanted to share these here to make all those other procrastinators feel better. 

I got home around 7 (I worked until 5 and then stopped off at Target for a rolling pin, because I’d been using a wine bottle and for once didn’t have an empty wine bottle hanging around…which now that I think about it is probably embarrassing…anyways, and then Target became this huge ordeal because I have no willpower and so I was home by 7) and then baked the cookies and whipped up the icing and started to decorate around 9. Huge mistake. My motivation to draw turkeys did not extend beyond 10pm and they slowly started to look really cartoony instead of artistically magical. Not to mention my handwriting broke down around the same time and I wrote “thanks” wrong on the “give thanks” cookies about four times. So this wasn’t a huge success for my culinary portfolio (this, ladies and gents, is why hiring a caterer is never a weakness!) BUT the kids loved the cookies and everybody assumed I made them childish on purpose to appeal to all the under 5s and I just rolled with that because THAT IS WHAT PARTY PLANNERS DO, folks. I didn’t go to bed until 2am so by the time I got them there Sunday for dinner I was just grateful I was contributing anything edible. 

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You can really see where everything started to go downhill.

Anyways, I hope everybody had a great Thanksgiving, and don’t forget to check out our website thepartygirl.ca which should be up by the end of this week! So exciting! 

thanksgiving

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With Thanksgiving approaching I decided we could start off with a holiday themed post because why not? 

Last Thanksgiving my contribution to the family dinner was these adorable turkey cupcakes. I want to say that for the record they tasted amazing, but that isn’t what this post is about. 

My biggest struggle when it comes to deciding on a dish to bring to any potluck situation is that I am a horrible overachiever. It wasn’t enough for me to just say “dessert”, no way. I had to take it to a whole new level and bring a themed dessert. I hate myself at times like these. 

As per any creative decision, I spent like three days on Pinterest coming up with ideas. I decided on cupcakes mostly because I had found this great deal at Michael’s on a cupcake carrier and was desperate to try it out. Also who doesn’t love cupcakes? 

I decided on turkey cupcakes because it seemed like the most obvious holiday theme possible, and also Thanksgiving and Halloween are so close together that beside my cupcake carrier there was a display for monster making kits and I fell in love with these monster eyes and decided on the spot they would make cute turkeys. I stand by that choice. 

I bought three different colours of piped icing and a container of chocolate icing. I made vanilla cupcakes (okay being honest: from a box, don’t tell) and then iced them with the chocolate. Everything seemed like it was going really well. 

Then I moved on to the part where I added the turkey’s face. So originally my plan with the Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup was that it would be a sort of base for the turkey’s iced feathers. This was a horrible failure that resulted in a huge mess and two destroy cupcakes. It was crime scene worthy. So then I decided it would be the turkeys face, since I had had a similar failure making a 3D beak out of icing. So I painted on a face with icing and then used the coloured piping icing to make three rows of “feathers”, and propped the Reese’s up on a chunk of icing. It looked super precarious but they didn’t fall (not even upon delivery and/or consumption, thanks very much!) so I considered that a success. 

The moral of this story is that even if you have subpar baking skills and even less patience for icing, if you’re dedicated and creative you can pull off the perfect addition to your family’s holiday party. 

These guys were a major hit and I got rave reviews. It was worth the entire day I dedicated to making them (!). Did the success go to my head? Probably. I signed up to make cranberry sangria for this year.