baby girl shower

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i had the pleasure of hosting a baby shower for my niece amber a couple weeks ago.  i absolutely LOVE throwing showers!  in fact, i threw amber’s bridal shower exactly a year ago, too!

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she sent me some baby room ideas & colors and i took my inspiration from there: gold, pale teal & blush pink.

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i kept the decor really simple with just items i pulled from around my house.

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the gold tassels were made using this easy tutorial, made from a plastic table cloth, and strung together with yarn!

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thankfully, my garden was in full bloom (thank you summer-like central coast fall weather!) and i was able to use my white and pale pink roses.  silas and i also snipped some branches from some pepper trees and eucalyptus trees in the neighborhood.

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i love the relaxed look the branches added.

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i am no professional baker, but this cake was really fun!  i made my go-to brownie cake since really so many of us don’t really love cake, but who doesn’t love a brownie?  i just used 3 boxes of brownie mix and baked them in round cake pans, then frosted just like a regular cake.  the pale ombre effect was created with 3 bowls of frosting: 1 with 2 drops of red food coloring, 1 with 1 drop, one with white frosting.  i started at the base with the darkest pink with just one line spread around.  then i used the next shade and finished with the white on top.  when i smoothed out the frosting, the colors easily softened and mixed together.

 

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the toppers were a teeny golden deer and a mini pom pom garland strung on wooden skewers.

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for an easy pop of color and print, i love using a roll of wrapping paper for a table runner.

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straws from target wrapped with pale pink wash tape (from target as well) and trimmed with scissors.

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mason jars and stacks of white plates, just some of my basic hostess recommendations.

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i also made this mobile for decor and as a baby gift.

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the mobile was made with a gold metal hoop, yarn, pompoms, skewers & glitter paper (for the arrows), and feathers painted with gold acrylic paint.

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one of my favorite details is this handmade print that my oldest, gracie, made for her baby cousin!

hostess basics

over the years, i have hosted many a party.  like a million.  at least ;)

what has made it easy for me is that i have all the basics on hand, and then i can just add details to make it special!

now my hostess stockpile took a few years to build up – it did not happen over night!  my biggest tip: go neutral.  i have gone with clear glass and white for all the basics.

hostess basics

this simple collection will help you to set a table for a crowd (i think i have settings for at least 30), and then add all the fun details with accessories.

hostess basics

years ago we bought a big ol’ stack of inexpensive plates from ikea, and bowls as well.  years later, i found a stack really similar dessert plates at a garage sale and snatched them up!

hostess basics

i used to use a couple pretty pitchers to serve drinks in at gatherings, but my drink dispensers are so much more convenient – so filling and refilling the pitchers all night.

hostess basics

i have a really big table and i can’t find a table cloth big enough to cover it.  or if i did, it would be ridiculously expensive just to get spaghetti sauce spilled on it.  my solution (and this would work for any size table):  plain white flat sheets.  i buy king size flat sheets from walmart and they work perfectly!

hostess basics

while i don’t have 30 just yet, i love using cloth napkins for nicer meals.  they are a nice step up from paper napkins.  i have a few different sets of white napkins – some linen, some thrifted – but because they are all white, they work well together.  i’m also thinking of gathering some other colors, too.  best thing about white, though: bleach.

hostess basics

our table regularly seats 8, but we can fit 12 pretty easily.  we have a set of folding metal chairs around our front porch table that migrate inside when we have a gathering.

hostess basics

i like to keep my serving dishes neutral: lots of white, clear and silver.  we tend to do mostly buffet style, so at least the buffet table can look nice!

hostess basics

and on the buffet as well, i like to add a little variation with cake plates.  i have been collecting a variety of cake plates since we first got married and they definitely come in handy!

hostess basics

we have a regular weekly gathering of our growth group at our house on monday nights, where we have as many as 35 for a potluck dinner.  having forks, knives and spoons on hand is so nice!

hostess basics

basic glassware is a must.  you can use red solo cups, of course, but real glasses make the table so much nicer!  while i don’t have 30 matching glasses for entertaining, i do have 30+ mason jars that work just as well!  they are definitely more on the casual side, but they are cheap and on hand, so thats a win for me.

once you set your all white table, you can mix things up by adding colored/patterned runners, centerpieces, place cards, whatever you can think of!

so how about you – do you have a hostess stockpile?  what do you have that i’m missing?