Style Shoot: Ocean Party + Madhouse Collection Giveaway

Disclaimer: I received free product to use in the pictured party and to give away to readers. No further compensation was provided. All opinions are my own.

ocean-popup-party01

Ocean Pop-Up Party

When MADHOUSE collection contacted me about their party goods I was over the moon because I had actually not only been eyeing their products, but had been planning on doing a pop-up party at the Oregon coast. When things like this happen it sort of just feels serendipitous, right? Unfortunately, life got in the way and the pop-up party kept getting postponed and people kept canceling due to the craziness of the Summer. Last weekend I just couldn’t wait any longer so the hubs and I loaded up the car and drove out to the beach for a fun pop-up party for two. We got some looks on the beach when we were setting up this lovely little table and eating our lunch in style. But, it was one of the nicest dates I’ve had in quite some time and one of the best beach visit’s we’ve ever had. Even better? No sand in our lunch from eating on the ground!

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About MADHOUSE Collection from Michael Aram Designs:

Michael Aram is a sculpture and designer that specializes in beautiful home and dining goods. His work can be seen in stores such a Macy’s and Nordstrom. MADHOUSE is a project created to reflect the way that people are entertaining today. The collection makes an effort to allow people to entertain in an elegant style no matter the occasion. The collection includes dinnerware, service ware, and drinkware of both disposable and reusable items in gorgeous designs.

MADHOUSE Collection Ocean Paper Products Giveaway:

I’m really excited to be able to give away some of the gorgeous items that I used in the above photos. MADHOUSE provided a set for me and a set for YOU. Enter in the Rafflecopter below for your chance to win the following from A Well Crafted Party and MADHOUSE Collection. Giveaway open to US Residents of 18 years of age or older with a US mailing address. Entering the giveaway means that you have read and complied with the giveaway’s rules and regulations. The contest goes from today until the end of the day on Sept. 1 (Sept. 2nd at 12:00 am PST).

MADhouse collection giveaway on A Well Crafted Party

Two Sets of Translucent Twig Cutlery / 1 Set of 8 Ocean Fine Paper Dinner plates / 1 Set of 8 Ocean Fine Paper Luncheon Plates / 1 Set of Ocean Paper Luncheon Napkins / 1 Set of Ocean Paper Beverage Napkins / 1 Set of Ocean Paper Guest Towels 

a Rafflecopter giveaway


giveaway week on A Well Crafted Party

This post is part of A Well Crafted Party’s Giveaway Week… we are cleaning out the editorial calendar and sharing the love with free printables, party good giveaways, and more! Don’t miss out on any of the giveaway posts by following along via BlogLovin, Twitter, or Facebook!

Five Tips for Planning a Community Event + Portland Bloggers Picnic Review

Five Tips for Planning a Community Event + Portland Bloggers Picnic Review

I’ve been behind on posting about some of the many events that I’ve been attending lately. I don’t like filling your feeds with pictures of people you don’t know or things you may not care about. I try my best not to post ALL of the events at once. I also really want to focus on the things that you can use to celebrate one of your own life events, make in  your home, use as style or beauty tips, or at least find pretty to look at.

Near the end of July I posted a week of Picnic posts in honor of the Portland Bloggers’ Family picnic. I seriously have about 5 drafts of picnic posts I didn’t complete. I may have to save them for next Summer for another picnic week. And, while I shared some of the iPhone snaps of the event, I didn’t get the chance to post the gorgeous photos our amazing professional photographer shot of the event.

5 tips for planning a community event

Five Tips for Planning a Community Event

So, to make this post about more than just sharing photos of a whole bunch of (awesome) strangers, I wanted to share a few tips for hosting a community style event. Community events could include a blogging community, church group, Instagram meet-ups, block parties… you get the idea. ;-) Photos feature members (and their families) of the Portland Bloggers group and are taken by the lovely Portland Lifestyle Photographer Macey of Motormouth Studios.

1. Make sure you have the right licensing for your event.

Licensing? But, I’m just throwing a picnic! Well, once you get out of the small group of people that can go anywhere together part of a gathering then you need to make sure that you have all your legal bases covered. Portland Parks have a great website that allowed me to find the park with the amenities I wanted and the prices of the rental fees. Even block parties now days usually need to have some sort of licensing to protect everyone invested in the event. Check for information online first and then give potential venues a call.

planning a community event

2. Make sure your venue has a restroom and parking.

Oiw… this one is a toughie for a lot of venues. Restrooms and adequate parking are MUSTS for events. Yes, sometimes you have to deal with things like metered parking… and, it sucks, but it is better than NO parking or unsafe parking areas. Make guests away of the parking situation before hand whether in the invite, online message, or by phone.

3. Try to get an easy-to-find location or give REALLY good directions in the invitations.

Boy did this not go right for our event. I reserved a fairly popular park, but google maps sent everyone to a different part of the park and the park did not have great signage. It was a MESS. Thankfully everyone eventually found us! A way to avoid what we did is visit the site before your event and inform guests of special directions. Also, check to make sure you have phone reception at the venue in case people try tweeting, calling, or texting you at the event.

planning a community event

4. Put out items that guests can recognize to know that they are going to the right place.

Balloons, signs, and bunting are great ways of letting your guests know where you are visually. Our picnic space at the Portland Bloggers’ picnic was fairly recognizable due to its balloons and signage. As a matter of fact, we had several people come to our site while looking for a different group because they were looking for ANYTHING that resembled an organized event.

making community events potluck

5. Make it Potluck or BYO!

Unless you have a company or well-off organization backing your event then the question of who is going to pay for what is definitely going to come up. Making the event a potluck or a Bring-Your-Own event can help share the costs of the event. Be up front about any costs or expectations in your invitation of the event. We made our event a “bring-you-own and if you want to share extra, feel-welcome” event. Everyone brought picnic lunches for themselves and their family members and a few people brought treats to share!


About Portland Bloggers:

Portland Bloggers is a meet-up group and blogging resource for Portland, Oregon area bloggers and businesses. (Click the above “Portland Bloggers” tab for more information, a list of awesome Portland Bloggers, and to see more photos from our Portland Bloggers’ meet-up!

recomonk

Recomonk was in house at the Portland Bloggers’ meet-up sharing their brand new blogging widget with our group. Recomonk is an easy way to share reviews and recommendation for music, movies, books and products you love with your blog readers. Click over to find out how you can earn rewards and easily share YOUR recommendations with your readers by clicking over to Recomonk.com.

Disclaimer: I did not receive any financial compensation to mention Recomonk, but they did give away a free gift card at the Portland Bloggers’ event. I know that some of my readers are bloggers and might like the opportunity to discover a new resource. All opinions are my own.

Portland Bloggers 2013

I’ve been so lucky to have been a part of the Portland Bloggers’ meet-up groups for some time now. We have such a great, supportive community and some of my dearest friends have been made through my participation of this group. Sometimes blogging can feel like a very lonely job. While it is great to be your own boss and have full control over content and the likes… it can also become daunting, boring, or just plain un-inspiring at times. Getting out into the real-world and meeting fellow bloggers— people who understand why you continually check twitter and bring a camera to dinner— can help inspire better content, relieve some work stresses, and help build your audience and connections. I’d highly recommend finding a meet-up group in your area.

If you are in the Portland, Oregon area then we’d love to see you get involved with the Portland Bloggers’ group or one of the other many meet-up groups out here. If you live in the Pacific Northwest then the PNW Blogger group is a great one to get involved with!

Portland Blogs you should know

Portland Bloggers You Should Know:

Below is a list of many of the bloggers that showed up to the Portland Bloggers’ picnic. (My memory is a little fuzzy… so, please forgive me if you were there and are not on the list. Email, Tweet, or comment that you were there and I’ll make sure you get added!) If you are looking for some new blogs to peruse and follow then definitely check these out or pin the above photo to come check out later!

  • 12oz Beehouse— A place for Coffee, Style, Crafting, and lots of pictures of beautiful Portland OR
  • A Tiny Rocket—About a girl chasing after art.
  • A Well Crafted Party— Oh wait… you are already here. Haha. ;-)
  • Adventures in Dressmaking—Sewing, DIY, Décor
  • Capturing Grace — I photograph portraits (family, maternity, newborns and seniors) and I shoot editorial assignments and love photographing food. My simple, “Photo Blog”, is where I share my favorite images from my photo shoots. Enjoy!
  • Chic Steals— Staying on-trend with a hefty dose of creativity and a ton of DIY- find some fabulous fashion steals and Chic Steals.
  • Dress This Nest— Fashion buyer turned Portlander and stay-at-home mom renovates a Cape Cod home in Laurelhurst
  • Mind Fit Move— Home of Mindfulness based Fitness.
  • Motormouth Studios— Lifestyle, Family, Children, Senior and Event Photography and Graphic/Web Design
  • Pea Roo—A blog boutique and kids’ fashion, preloved
  • Pechluck’s Food Adventures—A blog that chronicles adventures in eating in Portland- dining out and cooking and imbibing with appreciation for local Portland deliciousness.
  • Pepper Scraps— Healthy Mom = Heathly Family
  • Rain OR Shine— A family blog with a Northwest perspective.
  • The Boho Mama— I’m a free-spirited mama of twin girls writing about motherhood and our daily adventures, coffee in hand.
  • The Spicy Bee— A food blog featuring recipes, restaurant reviews, and events. Introduce some spice to your cooking repertoire.
  • Thyme of Taste— We are foodies from the PNW, who love food to share our food recipes, reviews and everyday adventures!
  • Tossing the Script — Positive body/self image blog- writing a new story one day at a time.
  • Word Savant— Thoughts and Tips on Writing from a Fiction Writer, Blogger, and Writing Coach

The blogging resource that allows bloggers to easily share reviews and recommendation for music, movies, books and products you love
with blog readers and get rewards, Recomonk, was also in attendance at our meet-up!

great picnic recipes

The thing about picnics is that it is all about the food and all about portable food. You can’t have a great picnic without some delicious recipes! Well, actually, I guess you can… you can totally get some yummy sandwiches like my good friend Bee did. Or hit up your local deli and fill your basket with small tastes of delicious delicacies.

Picnic food sandwiches

Great Picnic Recipes:

Many of the bloggers brought tasty treats that they made and then blogged about it after which made it super easy to create a list of some great picnic recipes that are portable and easy to make.

Picnic Recipes - Caprese Skewers

Caprese Skewers from Pechluck’s Food Adventures

Picnic Recipes Lemon Bars

Lemon Bars from Thyme of Taste

chocolate chip cookie recipe

Chocolate Chip Cookies (Made by me from Alton Brown’s Recipe)

Puff Pastry

Cherry Tomatoes, Herbed Goat Cheese with Puff Pastry (Made by me and featured on Live The Fancy Life)

Real Party: Tapas Potluck and Wine Tasting

Tapas Potluck

Tapas Potluck and Wine Tasting:

I love tapas. The Spanish small plates style of dish is one of my favorite ways to eat. Seriously, give me all the appetizers any day over a full meal. I like the option to try lots of different flavors and dishes without feeling like I need to be rolled out from under the table. So, after a recent wine tasting with some of my foodie friends I had the idea that we NEEDED to have a tapas party with the area food bloggers. (Anytime I can get someone to cook for ME I’m a happy girl.) After a bit of deliberation and collaboration the idea for a Tapas Competition and Spanish Wine tasting was born. Food bloggers brought dishes to the friendly competition, Whole Foods Market hosted a informative (and tasty) wine tasting, and several companies came together to award the winners with prizes! It was a grand time. Enough with the talk… onto the pictures! All the amazing photos are taken by food blogger extraordinaire (and my friend) Bee of The Spicy Bee.

Tapas Potluck for Food Bloggers' Meet-Up

wine tasting

 

whole foods market wine tasting

Our evening started out with Justin from Whole Foods Market in Portland pouring and teaching about four Spanish wines. If you were going to recreate this at home you could use the wines listed and read a little information about each, or pick your favorite Spanish wines and try pairing them with cheeses. Wines we tried: Marques de Gelida Brut Reserva Cava 2009 (light and refreshing white wine); R Lopez de Heredia Vina Tondonia Vinos Finos de Roja Vina Gravonia 2003 (I wouldn’t even try pronouncing that one, but it was amazing if you love a rich white wine); Dehesa La Grania 2006 (A tasty Tempranillo); and finally, a Manzanilla La Gitana Sherry.

Tapas Competition

Tasty Tapas

Pork Siracha Tapas

Tapas for a Tapas Potluck

Tapas at a Tapas Potluck

Recipes Galore

You get food bloggers together and have them bring food items that they’ve made and then you suddenly also get a full deck of recipes that you’ve tried yourself. It is amazing and I will be utilizing this tactic in many more events. ;-) If you are drooling from the photos above then check out these recipes (I’ll add more as they are published):

Tapas Party Goodie Bags

A gigantic thank you to…

A huge thank you goes out to all of the companies and people that made this shin-dig possible. Obviously, the Portland Food Bloggers group is awesome and I was so excited to be able to work with them on this project. Whole Foods Market is one of my favorite local companies because they continually make efforts to teach, interact, and just plain get-to-know their customers and local influencers. Tiny Prints provided the beautiful printed signs, thank you cards, and personalized napkins. Ulysses Press provided books for the winners of the Tapas Competition— You’ve got to check out their awesome titles. I’ll be reviewing one of their titles in the near future. Goodness Knows donated snack squares and coupons to the goodie bags and prizes— seriously tasty and handy sized snack squares for kids and adults alike. Black Rock Coffee provided gift cards for the gift bags. Pukka Herbs sent an array of teas for the blogger’s goodie bags— I’ve tried the “Love” blend and thought it was the perfect way to end an evening with my hubby. And, thank you to all the lovely bloggers who attended, brought food, and shared about the event.

Can’t get enough?

Check back next week for free printables that coordinate with the Tiny Prints Potluck Invitation designs. I’m dubbing next week giveaway week because I’ll be giving away some awesome party goods and lots of free printables throughout the week. Follow along via BlogLovin, Facebook, or Twitter to make sure you don’t miss out on all the fun!

To learn more about the sponsors connect with them on Twitter:

Disclaimer: Companies donated products, event space, and services to help make this event happen. I was not financially compensated for working on or posting about this event. All opinions are honest and my own!

 

Featured on Tiny Prints: A Tapas Potluck

tiny prints potluck party // a well crafted party

Photo taken by Portland Food Blogger Bee of The Spicy Bee

A Tapas Potluck featured on Tiny Prints

I’m excited to say that some of my work on a recent Tapas Potluck is featured over on the Tiny Prints blog today! Go check it out! And, don’t forget to come back here later to see more images from the event, get links to some of the tasty recipes, and receive some free printables to coordinate with the Tiny Prints items used in the party. Photos and recipes go live later today and the printables will be a part of my “giveaway” week next week. Follow along via BlogLovin, Twitter, or Facebook so that you don’t miss out on a full week of giveaways and free printables!

A few words about Tiny Prints: I’ve now ordered three orders from the company and I can’t begin to tell you how awesome they are. The website works with ease, you can have a designer look over the work before printing, the print quality is AWESOME, and each order arrived in a timely manner. I’ve ordered business cards, invitations, gift tags, and personalized napkins. All beautiful. Definitely check out their website and pin a few items for future events. Since registering on their site I’ve also received discounts in my inbox. Sign up on their site for a free account to see discounts in your email inbox as well.

Follow Tiny Prints via social media: Twitter Pinterest Facebook

Disclaimer: I was sent complimentary party invitations, thank you notes and personalized napkins from Tiny Prints and The Wedding Divas in exchange for using the products in a party and sharing it with the Tiny Prints blog. No other compensation was received and all opinions are my own.

Welcome to Twosville: A Town Themed Second Birthday Party

 

Entering Twosville

When it came to planning my son’s first birthday I had a theme in mind for AGES before he turned one. I prepped weeks before the big event. I did it all. As his second birthday came tumbling around I had NO idea what I was going to do to celebrate the big day.

I finally happened upon the idea of creating the town of Twosville. I thought it would be so much fun for the kids to have a town themed second birthday party. It gave me a ton of ideas to work with! It also allowed me to reuse and repurpose many items that I already had in my home— saving a bundle on the party! I used cardboard, tape, paint, and paper to create the town. My family and friends came over to help build the town. We did discover that we should have used some more sturdy and not-so-used boxes to create the town… ours looks a little Suess-like, but I still found it cute and the kiddo’s still loved it. Printables and my son’s toys helped put together the rest of the party. I feel like this is a theme that can be taken to the next level with time and supplies or done even simpler with imagination.

I posted some of my inspiration earlier in the month and a few of the party pics (and the story of the event) were featured on Tiny Prints this weekend. Throughout the week I’ll be sharing items from this party in addition to regular posts. I’ll be sharing town-themed activities, free printables, town-themed food ideas, town-themed favor ideas, and more ideas on how to make the town theme work for any age. Follow along via BlogLovinTwitter, or Facebook to make sure you don’t miss any of the Twosville Party posts!

invitation party hats

Twosville DMV

twosville hat shop

Twosville Tattoo Parlor

twosville cafe

twosville-bakery twosville-fastfood Twosville Ice Cream Truck

 

Twosville Birthday Party Cake Eating

All photos are by Portland Lifestyle Photographer Macey of Motormouth Studios. If you are looking for an awesome, affordable photographer in the Portland area then check her out!

The invitations and gift tags (pictured on the party hats) were sent complimentary from Tiny Prints.

Working on it Wednesday: Birthday Party Crafts

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I’ve been prepping like crazy for my little guy’s second birthday party. My original idea was to just buy a ton of balls in various sizes and fill our backyard with them. The kids would have a blast!

But, as I do… I suddenly got another idea in my head that just won’t stop. Now the crafting has been put into overdrive. People have been over at my house every night this week helping to make this party idea come to life.

I’m so excited. But, I’m also kicking myself not getting the idea sooner and not STOPPING with the ideas. I know better!

Follow along on my Instagram on Saturday to see sneak peeks of the party!

What did you do today!?

Snapshots: Portland Bloggers’ Family Picnic

Today was a LONG day. But, man… was it fun! We had our Portland Bloggers’ Family Picnic today. Sunshine, friends, good food, and blogging… sort of my favorite things wrapped up in one! I’ll be back a different day sharing some of the professional photos that Macey of Motormouth Studios shot, but I wanted to share a glimpse into today! Photos are iPhone photos via my Instagram, the Portland Bloggers’ Instagram, and the Portland Bloggers’ Facebook Page.

We unveiled the new Portland Bloggers' logo at today's event. I so dig it. Carly J. Cais designed this awesomesauce logo for us.

We unveiled the new Portland Bloggers’ logo at today’s event. I so dig it. Carly J. Cais designed this awesomesauce logo for us.

Isn't it so great!?

Isn’t it so great!?

My kiddo really, really liked the balloons.

My kiddo really, really liked the balloons.

My yummy picnic food... recipe coming to the blog SOON!

My yummy picnic food… recipe coming to the blog SOON!

Bee (The Spicy Bee) and Me getting in at least one photo together!

Bee (The Spicy Bee) and Me getting in at least one photo together!

The kiddo was worn out after the picnic. Heck, I was worn out after the picnic. We both looked a  little like this when we got home. Hopefully my feet weren't quite as dirty!

The kiddo was worn out after the picnic. Heck, I was worn out after the picnic. We both looked a little like this when we got home. Hopefully my feet weren’t quite as dirty!

 

 

 

 

 

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…

Working on it Wednesday: Alice in Wonderland Themed Party Invitations

I’ve been working on lots of little projects for upcoming parties lately. Fun supplies like ink, paper, hot glue guns, fabric dye and more have all been involved. So, I’ll be sharing some more Working on it Wednesday posts giving sneak peeks of projects. Below are some iPhone images of a set of invitations I am working on for an Alice in Wonderland themed bachelorette party. My idea for these invitations was to create a set of paper-goods that remind the invitee of falling down the rabbit hole. Lots of little surprises along the way. I’m trying to keep a whimsical feel by using lots of pastel colors, different types of paper, and hand-lettering. I hope the invitations help guests feel intrigued and excited about the Alice in Wonderland themed party.

Continue Reading…

Portland Bloggers’ Meet-Up: Social Strategies for Bloggers

Just a couple weeks ago I helped host another Portland Bloggers’ meet-up. I’ve LOVED being a part of this growing community. It is so fulfilling! We have area meet-ups every other month. We try to do four educational events and two events that are purely for socializing. Our past event was a workshop on Social Media Strategies for Bloggers. I learned a lot and have been putting much of the info to use (check out the slideshow from the event to get some tips for your own social media straegies!) and have seen actual results already! Read on to see the beautiful images and learn more about the event.

Continue Reading…

{Real Parties} Travel Inspired Wedding

Ahhh…. weddings are the ultimate parties, aren’t they? I got married almost seven years ago and still buy wedding magazines for inspiration. But, as many parties as I get to help with, nothing compares to weddings in my book. Which is why I was thrilled when my friend Leah asked me to help with her wedding this past year!

She and her now-husband, Jake, are two really amazing and kind people. Their wedding Sept. 1, 2012, was a perfect reflection of them as a couple as well as their love for travel. Leah spent months and months gathering inspiration for her event. She was drawn to natural elements as well as the weddings that featured a travel-theme.

We designed (and put together) her boarding pass invitations to set the mood for the party. But, the main event had all the fun details. A big thank you to her wonderful photographer, Katherine McClosky Photography, for letting me share these images with you.

Travel Themed Wedding

The Wedding Party

Continue Reading…

{Real Parties} Rainbow Themed First Birthday

The little lady that I threw the Woodland Baby Shower for last January is now one! Time sure flies… Her mom and dad pulled off an amazing Rainbow Themed First Birthday for her recently. I’m super excited that they are letting me share some photos of the event. This makes for a wonderful first birthday party. I also think some of the party details could easily be transformed into an awesome Wizard of Oz party or, with the addition of a bucket of gold, a great St. Patrick’s Day Party. 

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{Real Parties} Vintage Sweet Portland Wedding

I’m so excited to share these gorgeous photos taken by Sash Photography of this Vintage Sweet Portland Wedding. The beautiful bride and handsome groom are my friends, Alishia and Ryan. I was thrilled to be in attendance at a celebration that was so personal and touching. Enjoy the photos!

{Real Party} Plaid Valentine’s Day Girl’s Night

Happy Valentine’s Day!!! I love today. As a Valentine’s Day treat I am sharing a {Real Party} feature. I think real parties are always my favorite posts. I like to see how everyday people do parties and what the parties ACTUALLY look like in process. I hope you enjoy it as much as I do!

This past weekend a few of us ladies got together for a fun Ladies’ Night. (Galentine’s Day anyone?) It was hosted at the beautiful home of Suzannah from Adventure’s in Dressmaking. Seriously, her place is so nice that we barely needed to decorate at all! I wanted to steer away from using too much pink in this party…not because I don’t love pink, but because I’ve used it SO much over the years. I wanted something that made me think coziness and winter. We went with a beautiful red, black, white, and grey plaid for the base of our decor. From there we added in some pink and red heart confetti, red flowers, and warm and fuzzy decor items

Continue Reading…

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