Hey Girl Party Activities: Color Me Yours

Ryan Gosling Themed Party Activity "Color Me Yours" // A Well Crafted Party

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I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again… I’m not a fan of most party games. Making everyone play something silly has never really been in my bag of tricks. I HAVE thrown parties with games before. And, this Ryan Gosling themed birthday party is no exception. (I’ll share our party game very soon!) But, I like to always have an activity or two that doesn’t revolve around a group activity or food.

Ryan Gosling Themed Party Activity "Color Me Yours" // A Well Crafted Party

Ryan Gosling Themed Party Activity "Color Me Yours" // A Well Crafted Party

One of the areas of the party was set up so that guests could easily sit and chat with a place to set their plates and drinks. I then added in an awesome coloring book, “Colour Me Good Ryan Gosling.” I cut out a few of the pages and placed them on the table to encourage guests to color them. Snacks, crayons, and fun DIY party confetti also decked out the area.

What are your favorite activities for your parties? Have you ever been at an event with a really amazing activity? Comment Below!

Hey Girl Party Activities: Hey Girl Guest Book

Ryan Gosling Themed Party Agenda // A Well Crafted Party

I’m not one to plan out every detail to a party. I prefer my parties to be fairly laid back and casual. To me the perfect party has a few activities, lots of good food and great drink, and a planned out party space that encourages mingling. However, when I am doing more structured events, events venues that I’ve reserved for a certain amount of time, or events on weeknights, I tend to plan things out just a bit more clearly. My recent Hey Girl – Ryan Gosling themed birthday party was on a weeknight at a friend’s house. I knew that having it over at a certain time would be good for everyone involved. I also wanted to draw attention to the different activities that I had planned, so I created this agenda to work partially as an extra decor item as well as pointing out the evening plan.

The first item on the evening’s agenda included leaving the guest of honor a note in her guest book! I love guest books and variations on guest books because they give the guest of honor a way to remember the people at their event.

Hey Girl Journal subs at Guest Book at Ryan Gosling themed party // A Well Crafted Party

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I found this amazing “Hey Girl” Flexi Journal by Chronicle Books   on Amazon and bought it up right away. The journal is filled with little drawn images of Ryan Gosling with quote bubbles. I encouraged guests to write messages in each of the quote bubbles so that in the future, as Macey filled out her journal, she’d be greeted with happy messages from friends!

Hey Girl Journal makes for fantastic Guest Book // A Well Crafted Party

What is your favorite thing to use as a guest book? Have you seen some creative guest books at parties in the past? Comment Below!

Hey Girl Party Favors – Ryan Gosling Tea Towels

DIY Ryan Gosling Tea Towels // A Well Crafted Party

When I got to thinking of the whole “Hey Girl” Meme for the Ryan Gosling themed party the ideas sort of over-took my brain. I wanted to do SO much. But, as I advise every bride/diy event planner … I started out with lots of ideas and then began to narrow them down. The favor idea was one of my FAVORITE ideas, so I spent some time figuring out the best way to go about it. I loved the idea of giving guests tea towels (who doesn’t need more of those!?) that were a simple black and white that had a “Hey Girl” message of “Hey girl, let me dry those dishes for you.”

My first attempt at making these tea towels did NOT go well. I was determined to screen press the tea towels. I borrowed my friend Suzannah’s Ryonet home screen printing press and tried following her tutorial and the Ryonet YouTube tutorial. The whole process is very, very involved. The kit included everything I needed and the instructions were great! But, I didn’t give myself near enough time or room for error. It was one of those DIY fails that just really sucks. After I dried my tears of frustration, I scrapped the screen printing idea and went with the iron on transfer method.

DIY Ryan Gosling Tea Towels // A Well Crafted Party

 

I typically don’t enjoy the way the iron on transfer looks on fabrics. There is usually a line around the image that is slightly more glossy than I want. When the paper gets too hot it can yellow. Also, I never know how long it will last. I was pretty thrilled with the way these tea towels turned out though and would recommend the iron-on transfer as an easy way to make these. Follow the instructions on the iron on transfer paper.

Tips for best results when using the iron-on transfer method:

  • Prep your fabric. Wash, dry and iron your fabric before you apply the transfer. Will the transfer take if you skip this step? Yep. But, I think it benefits the entire project to take those other steps. I feel like the transfer goes on better and that it lasts longer.
  • Transfer the RIGHT image. Most transfer papers require you to print a mirror image of your image. Transfer paper, while not super expensive, isn’t cheap either. Losing an entire sheet due to a printing mistake would be a bummer.
  • Stick to single colors. I have found that when I use multiple colors I don’t like the look as much as I do when there is only one color in the image. This is totally a preference though!
  • Don’t use an ironing board. The instructions for my package of transfer paper said not to use an ironing board. This was the first time I’ve ever done it this way and I was thrilled with the results. Instead of an ironing board you want to find a sturdy surface that is about waist-high with an ironed pillowcase placed on top. It really makes the difference to have the leverage to apply even force while ironing.

DIY Ryan Gosling Tea Towels // A Well Crafted Party

 

Want to make your own Ryan Gosling tea towels?

Download my Hey Girl Tea Towel print and get started! Image of Ryan Gosling was licensed under CC 2.0 — sourced via Raffi Asdourian . I then modified the image. Tutorial coming!

Ryan Gosling Free Printable // A Well Crafted Party

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And, just because I thought this would also make for a cute framed print above a drying rack in the kitchen I also made an 8×10 printable. Click here to download you own free Ryan Gosling themed printable!

Love the idea but just don’t wanna make your own tea towels? These sketched tea towels by Dear Colleen are AMAZING and would make for a fantastic gift! They’d be a better quality and have THREE images of Ryan Gosling… so, there is that too!

(PS. I will give screen printing a shot again sometime soon.)

(PPS. Ryan, if you’re reading this… first, EEEEE! Second, we share because we love your work and enjoy the meme. Will take down with a note from you! )

 

Real Party: ‘Hey Girl’ Birthday Party

Ryan Gosling Party - DIY Invitation // A Well Crafted Party

I’m really, really excited to be sharing some pictures from my most recent party today… a “Hey Girl” party for my friend Macey! A “Hey Girl” party you ask? Well, you know the Ryan Gosling meme, right? If not… you may not understand the awesomeness of this party.

Macey turned a year older this year and as she protested celebrations I asked her, “If you could have any party theme for your birthday, what would it be?” She answered, “Ryan Gosling, of course!”

Magic happened in that moment. My brain started firing on all cylinders and (thankfully) my friend Bee offered to host in her beautiful home. The rest is history… well, it is at least a week old now. If you were following along on my Instagram you might have seen a few photos from the party.

Ryan Gosling Party // A Well Crafted Party
Ryan Gosling Party // A Well Crafted Party
"Hey Girl" Ryan Gosling Party // A Well Crafted Party
"Hey Girl" - Ryan Gosling Party // A Well Crafted Party
"Hey Girl" - Ryan Gosling Party // A Well Crafted Party

I can’t wait to share all the fun details! A Ryan Gosling party is great for a birthday party, bachelorette party, or heck… a baby shower for a baby girl! This was probably one of my favorite parties to date and nearly everything was DIY. Check back over this week and next for the following posts:

I’ll update this page with links to posts as they go live. Printables, tutorials, and a whole lotta fun to come!

In the meantime… answer me this:

If you could have any party theme… what would it be?

Real Party: Picnic Birthday Party

Real Party: Picnic Themed Birthday Party // A Well Crafted Party

This year my home parties have been pretty laid back due to busy schedules and tightening of budgets. But, being me, I still wanted to celebrate our milestones in some fashion. The picnic-themed party that I hosted for my husband’s birthday this year fit the bill for an easy, but fun event.

Picnic Birthday Party Menu:

Sandwiches: 

  • Pressed Italian Sandwiches
  • veggie sandwiches that I created that had carrots, olives, hummus, and cucumber layered on a flat bread
  • Chicken Salad Sandwiches
  • Rosemary Ham and Brie Sandwiches (SO GOOD– I’ll be sharing the recipe for this one soon!)

Chips: Sweet Potato and Kettle Chips — I just bought these chips at Trader Joes and then put them into paper bags that I had printed labels on.

Salads:

Dessert: We finished off the meal with a dessert of spiked ice creams.

Drinks: Signature cocktails, beers, and lemonades made for easy beverages

Real Party: Picnic Themed Birthday Party // A Well Crafted Party

Real Party: Picnic Themed Birthday Party // A Well Crafted Party

Real Party: Picnic Themed Birthday Party // A Well Crafted Party

Real Party: Picnic Themed Birthday Party // A Well Crafted Party

Real Party: Picnic Themed Birthday Party // A Well Crafted Party

Real Party: Picnic Themed Birthday Party // A Well Crafted Party

Finally, a selection of lawn games such as a ring toss, bocce ball, and badminton kept everyone entertained.

*Edited to add this bit of awesome info:

Picnic Party Favors

Guests left the part with their very own Emergency Picnic Kit! I shared the kit, directions for making your own, and free printables over on Today’s Creative Blog! Check out the blog to learn how to make your own Emergency Picnic Kit party favor!

Hopefully this post and the posts that come out of this party serve to be an inspiration to you!

What would you want to include in a picnic birthday party?

Featured: Farm to Table Fete on Eat Drink Pretty

A couple of weeks ago we celebrated my husband’s birthday with a Farm to Table inspired party. I shared some of the pretty details and recipes with Eat Drink Pretty and it is featured today!

Continue Reading…

{Real Party} It’s the End of the World!

This year’s birthday “theme” was “It’s the End of the World!” Do I think the world is ending today? Nope. Did I have a blast planning an End of the World themed party… YOU BET!

This was absolutely my favorite birthday party to date. I didn’t have to clean or cook! Myself and about 28 of my friends went to The Original— a Dineraunt here in Portland, OR. The food was SO good (hello, donut burger sliders—YUM), the drinks were great, and the service was really wonderful.

I’ve put together some of the images taken from that evening, along with some DIY tips that you can incorporate in many different themed parties.

Invitations: If I’ve said it once, I’ve said it a thousand times… the invitation sets the tone for the entire party. I wanted everyone to know that we’d be having cocktails and yummy food. But, I also wanted to relay the message that this was going to be a FUN party. My favorite part of the invite was the little dino reminder. It had a glittery eyeball and a message reminding guests that the party was on 12/12/12 on the back. People could hang them on a tree, the front door, or their fridge!


Decor: The Original has such a hip, fun decor already that I knew I didn’t need much to make this party stand out. And, I’d never suggest to anyone to bring in a ton of decorations to a restaurant. (See my post on hosting events at a restaurant here.)
So, for decor at this party I made little flags, glittery dinosaurs (they were at the last end of the world!), some “fortune tellers,” and a few activities. I sprinkled the tables with the items. I then used the favor bags as part of the table’s centerpieces. Balloons and party hats finished off the party space. I loved how bright and celebratory everything looked!

Activities: I tried to keep the activities simple for the party… I didn’t want to annoy other guests or anything. But, I still wanted some activities that guests could do because not everyone knew each other and activities are a great way to break the ice.

I made little “Draw Your Future Action Figure” sheets for people to “tell future inhabitants of earth what your action figure should look like… don’t want to end up with short little arms like T-Rex!” I the fortune tellers (or cootie catchers) and small talking cards with bucket list items.

Mostly everyone chatted and enjoyed the food… but, it was fun picking up the action figure sheets at the end of the night!

Photo by Bee of The Spicy Bee, Instagram @thespicybee
Favor: I filled bags found at Oriental Trading with all sorts of goodies just in case the end of days is upon us. The favor had the following items:
  • Beer: “The end is near… time for a beer!”
  • Chapstick: “If I’m going out… I’m going out MAKING OUT!”
  • Chocolate: “The first end of the world would have been much more enjoyable with chocolate.”
  • Mints: “Just because the end is MINT to be… your breath doesn’t need to be so stinky!”
  • Bubbles… well, because Bubbles are fun. 

I didn’t take many photos… but, I loved seeing the Instagram photos that everyone took! I was really fortunate to have so many people with cameras and/or camera phones in attendance or I’d barely have a photo to post today!

Check out these awesome instagram accounts! 

DISCLAIMER: I was in no way compensated for my opinion on The Original. Just my opinion from this experience.


{Real Party} Pink and Glamorous 25th Birthday Party Decor

I’m going to let the photos talk today on this Pink and Glamorous 25th Birthday Party I helped throw for my friend, Suzannah of Adventures in Dressmaking. I’ll be going over some great recipe ideas for a vegan bash, DIY decor elements, DIY favors, and party activities throughout the week. 
BTW, the party took place in her beautiful new house that she is blogging all about over at her blog! 

25 Reasons We Love Suzannah Guest “Books”
The Bar

Goofy photo from the “photo booth” area

Lots of pink, glitter, and sequins for this fabulous 25th birthday girl! 
Oh, and yeah… she made that dress! 
Check back tomorrow for some easy, and pretty, DIY decor! 

{Real Party} Fancy Pants Birthday Party

My birthday falls right before Christmas… Which means that funds are usually low and my mind is always somewhere other than on planning or enjoying a party. But, it is also among my favorite days of the entire year. I typically use it as an excuse to get dressed up and hang out with my friends. So, this year, with a lot of help from my friends, I threw together a Fancy Pants birthday party.

This is the first year I’ve used Christmas decor in my birthday party. I typically like to keep it all separate. But, it turned out to be a inexpensive and festive way to decorate. I created the paper goods for the party, created fun appetizers with the help of trader joes, made some fun signature cocktails, created a few activities, and had a great time! Over the next few days I’ll post about the recipes, decor, and activities. I’ll even add a few freebie printables so you can have your own fancy pants party!

– Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

{Recipe} Sweet Potato Cake with Marshmallow Buttercream Frosting

Mmmm… birthday cake. Is there anything better?
I really enjoy making my friends birthday cakes or cupcakes. I like to play around with flavors and frostings. I like using things I have on hand or going to buy something special. I made this cake  (featured in the Rustic Birthday Party Post from yesterday) using some of the sweet potatoes that came in my weekly veggie box delivery.
And, boy oh boy was it a good use of vegetables!
The cake didn’t look perfect. My frosting job was a little wonky. But, it tasted pretty awesome.
The sweet potatoes made the cake moist. The marshmallow gave the frosting a fun kick.
Then, the crunch of the walnuts made me want another slice.
Sweet Potato Cake Recipe
Recipe loosely based on epicurious.com recipe
changes and additions made by me
INGREDIENTS:
  • 4 8-ounce red-skinned sweet potatoes(yams)
  • 2 3/4 cups all purpose flour
  • 3 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 1/2 cup maple syrup
  • 3/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Topping:

  • Marshmallow Buttercream Frosting (see recipe below)
  • Walnuts (or pecans)
DIRECTIONS:
1. Poke yams with fork and bake until tender (about 1 hour at 375 degrees F). You can also do this in the microwave or used leftover mashed sweet potatoes ( approximately 2 cups worth). Peel yams and smash once done.
2. While yams are baking prepare a pan for cooking. You can use a muffin tin with liners for cupcakes. I used a springform pan and sprayed it with a little cooking spray and dusted it with a little bit of flour to prevent sticking. Preheat oven to 325 F.
3. In a medium bowl sift together (or put in bowl and stir around with a whisk or fork) flour, pumpkin pie spice, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
4. In a large bowl mix 2 cups of (cooled and mashed) yams with sugar, vegetable oil and syrup. Then mix in eggs 2 at a time. After mixing in eggs add in the flour mixture and mix until just incorporated. Add in vanilla extract and mix one last time. (I use a hand-held mixer, but if you are lucky enough to own a kitchen aid stand mixer then I’m sure that would work as well.)
5. Pour cake batter into prepared pan. Bake at 325 for about one hour or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean.
After the cake was done and cooled I sliced it in half, brushed the tops with a little bit of whiskey (a simple syrup would work as well) to keep it moist, and then frosted it. I put marshmallow icing and walnuts on the first layer before addign the top layer. I then frosted the entire cake with marshmallow icing and topped with walnuts.
Marshmallow Buttercream Frosting
I improvised this frosting recipe using my basic butter frosting as a base
INGREDIENTS:
  • 2 sticks butter- room temperature
  • 1 8 oz jar of Marshmallow Cream
  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • milk or cream if needed for consistency
DIRECTIONS:
1. Whip up two sticks of room temperature butter until fluffy. (I use my handheld mixer.)
2. Add in 1 8 oz jar of Marshmallow Cream- whip until incorporated. I spray my handheld mixer with a little bit of cooking spray to help keep the marshmallow cream from sticking to my mixer.
3. While mixing, slowly add in powdered sugar.
4. Add in vanilla and salt and mix.
5. If the frosting is too thick add in tsp of milk or cream. If it is too runny add in a little bit more powdered sugar. I found that I usually don’t need any additional milk or sugar.
Add candles and a song and then you’ve got yourself a birthday cake!
I’d love to know if you decide to make this cake.

{Real Party} Rustic Dinner Party

On a previous {Working on it Wednesday} post I shared an inspiration board for a Fall dinner party with a color scheme of whites, tans, browns and blues.
Guests were in charge of bringing desserts or appetizers while I was in charge of making a main course dish and two sides for 20 people. I challenged myself to keep the whole party within a budget of $125. The decor could only cost $25 and the food, favors and two bottles of wine had to ring in under $100.

The Budget Breakdown
Decor:
$3 on plastic zoo animals
$4 on spray paint
$13 rugged burlap
$9 on flowers
Total: $29
 The rest of the decor were items I already owned
and items I made from things I already owned.
Food, Favors, and Wine: 
Wine— Two Bottles Free
Had leftover from Halloween party
Favors— Takeout boxes for guests to fill with desserts
$6.75
(Boxes were $13.50, but I split the costs with a friend
who needed the other half of the box order for Thanksgiving)
Food— $82.00
The biggest part of this cost was the meat for 15 people.
I also added a vegetarian main course dish and a birthday cake to this shopping trip.
Total: $88.75
Total Party Cost: $117.75

Check back this week for recipes and DIY decorations.

{Real Party} Breakfast for Dinner Birthday

A few weeks back I helped a friend Joan throw together a simple, but fun “Breakfast for Dinner” Birthday Party for a mutual friend, Ryan.
His only requests were “Bacon and something with Chocolate for dessert.”

Real Party: 28th Birthday Cocktail Party

Who doesn’t love a good cocktail party? Well I certainly do… and I was lucky enough to get the opportunity to throw a cocktail party birthday party last year for a friend’s 28th birthday.

Today is her 29th birthday so I thought I would revel in found memories and say,
“Happy Birthday!” with a real party feature of her birthday.

Real Party: A Bike Themed Cocktail Party

Recently I help a friend of mine throw a birthday cocktail party for her bike lovin’ beau. We decided to go the route of bike parts, old wine and beer bottles and a neat recycled-chic look. The color scheme was any and all metal and chrome colors.

The decor consisted of bike wheels, chain and gears. I made coasters and drink labels with the slogan, “Gear up and Drink.” We spray painted beer and wine bottles with black and silver paint and filled them with wildflowers. Framed pictures of bikes and bike signs decorated the walls and tables around the party.

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