In June of this year, my 7 year old niece was diagnosed with leukemia. I was quickly reminded how precious life is and how things can change overnight. My family came together to support my sister and brother-in-law as they dropped everything to be by their daughters side. We formed a fundraising site in order to help relieve some of the financial stress and allow friends to join in the ranks in surrounding them with love and encouragement. The outpouring of support has been immeasurable and we will be forever grateful. To donate or acquire updates on Lily’s progress, you can go to http://www.youcaring.com/other/love-for-lily-belle/193491
My daughter’s 10th birthday approached shortly after Lily’s diagnosis and she so graciously decided that she wanted to “donate” her birthday to her cousin. The two had spent Avie’s birthday together for several years and this year, Lily would be unable to attend. We decided to throw a festive and fun “fruity flamingo” party in order to celebrate summer, hope and life.
We had a ton of fun planning the details and there were so many fantastic party people involved! I was inspired by the Oh Joy! for Target summer collection and all of it’s bright colors. I picked up some of the cups, plates, a fruity tray and a few other pieces and planned the color palette around those fun pieces.
The TomKat Studio designed a printable party collection which provided the perfect flamingo flair. The collection can be purchased in her shop at The TomKat Studio. The shop also has a fabulous assortment of honeycomb balls in all different colors and sizes. I knew these would be perfect to create over sized fruit decor with. The Pixel Studio helped me design a template for a pear, apple, and strawberry and the orange honeycomb balls were ready to go as is. The Tomkat studio will have a DIY tutorial on her blog which will include the templates and how to create your own fruit decor!
Couture Party Decor provided a plethora of gorgeous colors and sizes of paper lanterns. I used the lanterns and the honeycomb fruit to create a backdrop for the sweets and sorbet stations and as decor underneath the tiki umbrellas. The kids also loved playing with the decor on the lawn. These were such easy, inexpensive decorative items and they filled up the space beautifully making the party bright and fun.
The tables, linens, chairs and the tiki umbrellas were from Jump Connection. Those tiki umbrellas were full and fabulous. I LOVED them! Each place setting had an Oh Joy! plate, a cup for ice and some perfect items from Shop Sweet Lulu. Their soda pop bottles held lemonade and striped straws and I used The TomKat Studio printables to hold the utensils. Shop Sweet Lulu’s Daffodil Yellow Triangle napkins looked darling under the CUTEST pineapple cups and flamingo straws from Oriental Trading Company. Each party guest was ecstatic about their own mini pinatas by Lisa Frank of Handcrafted Parties. Talk about darling and unique! Those pinatas actually had candy in them and were the real deal! I added tissue tassel garland details and painted faux fruit throughout the party.
I used fruit stickers and sunglasses from The Oriental Trading Company and the kids had a blast decorating their own sunglasses. This was the simplest and most fun “craft” station and the party guests each went home with new shades.
Floral arrangements added fun to the food stations and tables. These darling mason jars were hand painted by Always The Occasion. After placing flowers in each one, I felt like it needed something more. Made By A Princess created custom, glitter flamingo cupcake toppers but I couldn’t help using them in the floral arrangements.
I had to have some yard flamingos and found the perfect ones via Oriental Trading Company. Inspired by Carmen Miranda, I made little fruit hats for each one and placed them all over the yard. The girls were pretty excited to play “models” in some pretty adorable outfits. Each outfit was created by Redeux Kidz. I am a huge fan of up cycled items and they take vintage clothing and make them into one of a kind pieces. The company always donates a percentage of their profits to charities and the owner is the absolute sweetest.
From left to right, the girls wore custom Redeux Kidz outfits. Kids Aztec Dream Kaftan, Lemonade and Cherry Peasant Dress, Canary Palazzo Pants, Sunset Orange Bloomies, Aqua Floral Pleated Sun Dress
Of course the birthday girl had to have something special and there’s nothing better than a custom party hat that can be kept long after the party is over. Among many other things, Shawna Brockmeier Events makes the most adorable, custom party hats. This one was perfect with it’s tropical print and fruit details. Avalon still parades around the house with it on.
It’s been a hot summer and I wanted to do something different for the kids so I designed a sorbet station with Kristin of Meringue Bake Shop. Known for creating the pushcake, her push pop containers were perfect for sorbet. My mom spent a whole day perfecting recipes and filling containers. Sawyer Leigh Boutique sent die cut fruit and flamingos to match the party colors. They were perfect for separating flavors and added the right amount of detail to each treat. Sweetly Chic Events and Design created hand painted letters which clearly made the Sorbet station stand out. I attached them to the table and they were perfect! Spoons from Shop Sweet Lulu came in handy when the party goes wanted to share their sorbet and I placed a few pineapple cups from The Oriental Trading Company to remind guests that drinks were nearby.
Of course I HAD to have a dessert station and collaborated with some of my favorite dessert vendors. Mallory of The French Confection Co. created the perfect, most delicious cake and we almost didn’t cut into it as it was just too cute! Mallory also made scrumptious confetti cupcakes with fondant fruit details, the most popular fruit macarons (let me tell you…the coordinating fruit fillings were to die for) and mini strawberry tarts. All of the desserts were displayed on our cake stands on top of a custom tie dyed table runner by Cupcakes With Character. It was gorgeously detailed in person and added the perfect pop of color.
Bella’s Bakery and Bowtique made the most perfect chocolate covered Oreos and pineapple cake pops. Each one is like an edible piece of art.
I teared up when I opened the box of custom lollipops by Lollipics. A picture of my daughter and niece made each lollipop extra special. I’m all about personal details and this company creates just that in edible form. Displayed next to our Pineapple Candy Kabobs, they went home with party guests as one of many party favors.
Kate Aspen sent their “All That Glitter” gold favor boxes and I hot glued pink flamingos to the top. Inside each box was a “Love for Lily Belle” bracelet and some fruit shaped erasers. They added the perfect touch of glitter to the table.
The kids also munched on cotton candy from Dolly’s Cotton Candy. Let me tell you, you haven’t tasted flavors as fun as watermelon, orange crush and lemon. Their cotton candy lolli’s were a huge hit!
I had a little kids splash area and used tissue bunting garland from Shop Sweet Lulu as a backdrop for The TomKat Studio “Happy Birthday” banner that I made using tissue paper garland from Fancy and Fold. I added pictures of the birthday girl and my niece to the cutest felt fruit garland by Fizzy Party. Both of these are now hanging as decor in my daughters room.
I can’t thank everyone enough for bringing this party to life and in turn, celebrating my daughters birthday and the hope we have for Lily’s recovery. I am truly blessed!
Sweets Indeed – Concept, Design and Styling, Pineapple Candy Kabobs, Dessert Station Cake Stands - www.sweetsindeed.com
The Pixel Studio – Photography - www.thepixelstudio.com
The TomKat Studio – Printable Party Collection and Honeycomb Balls - www.thetomkatstudio.com
The Oriental Trading Company – Yard Flamingos, Sunglasses and Fruit Stickers, Pineapple Cups, Flamingo Food Sticks, Flamingo Straws and Fruit Erasers - www.orientaltrading.com
Redeux Kids – Upcycled Vintage Clothing - www.redeuxkidz.com
Shop Sweet Lulu – Striped Straws, Soda Bottles, Pink Lemonade Spoons, Tissue Bunting Garland, Paper Doilies, Daffodil Yellow Triangles Tableware Collection - www.shopsweetlulu.com
Meringue Bake Shop – Pushpop Containers – www.meringuebakeshop.com
The French ConfectionCo. – Cake, Fruit Macarons, Cupcakes, Fondant Fruit Toppers, Fruit Tarts - www.thefrenchconfectionco.com
Lollipics – Custom Image Lollipops – www.lollipics.com
Dolly’s Cotton Candy – Cotton Candy Lollipops – www.dollyscottoncandy.com
Bella’s Bakery and Bowtique – Custom Oreos and Pineapple Cake Pops - www.facebook.com/BellasBakeryandBowtique
Sawyer Leigh Boutique – Die Cut Fruit Shapes - www.etsy.com/shop/SawyerLeighBoutique
Kate Aspen – “All That Glitter” Gold Glitter Favor Box - www.kateaspen.com
Sweetly Chic Events andDesign- Custom Sorbet Letters - www.sweetlychicevents.com
Fizzy Party – Fruit Felt Garland - www.fizzyparty.com
Fancy and Fold – Tissue Paper Tassel Garland – www.facebook.com/fancyandfold
Always The Occasion – Flamingo Mason Jars – www.facebook.com/alwaystheoccasion
Lisa Frank – Mini Fruit Pinatas – www.handcraftedparties.com
Made By A Princess – Glitter Flamingo Toppers – www.partiesinstyle.com
Couture Party Decor – Paper Lanterns - www.couturepartydecor.com
Shawna Brockmeier Events – Birthday Hat – www.facebook.com/pages/Shawna-Brockmeier-Styled-Events
Jump Connection – Tiki Umbrella’s, Linens, Tables and Chairs - www.jumpconnection.com
Hello my lovely, sweet peeps!
I have some major catching up to do on the blog as I’ve been preoccupied with so many amazing projects. I thought I’d share a little bit of what’s been going on behind-the-scenes at Sweets Indeed. Let me start by expressing my gratitude to all of you who have supported me on this ever changing journey. As you know, I have been asking for votes for this amazing opportunity described below.
Chase through their Community Giving program and LivingSocial have launched Mission: Small Business. The title gives me goosebumps. Many of you are small business owners and entrepreneurs with brilliant ideas. You know the massive drive and desire that comes alongside and are aware of how difficult it can be sometimes as a small business owner. I personally feel like I have been sitting on a gold mine, waiting to share this sparkling mountain of gems with the world, yet it’s just out of reach. As a small business, I am self funded and lack the bulk investment money needed to expand. Mission: Small Business has given me hope! Chase and Living Social are awarding up to 12 individual small business grants of $250,000 to 12 different small businesses. WOW! For every person that votes, they add $5 to the grant pool and that’s where you come in!
Until June 25th, you can follow this link and log in using Facebook. Simply type in Sweets Indeed (we are located in Glendora, California) and click “vote“. It’s SO EASY!! We have to obtain a minimum of 250 votes in order for our application to be accepted. YOU make this possible. Many of you have already voted and shared our mission to your friends. I cannot even begin to express my gratitude. I see each and every one of you and am so, so appreciative. I feel like I’ve been saying those two sentences over and over again but it’s true!!
Click. Type in Sweets Indeed. Vote. Share. Every single vote counts!!
Now, I’d like to share a bit of what we would do if awarded this grant.
I am blessed to have grown up in a creative environment where both my parents encouraged me to dream big and instilled the confidence that I could do anything I set my mind to. My childhood is full of fun, fond memories, the majority of which are related to special events that encompassed my favorite things. Somehow, my parents always made us feel special and unique amidst generic party themes and lack luster supplies. Oh how the party world has changed!
It was the handcrafted details and customization of each party, each reward, and each summer activity that spurred life long memories. I remember the smell of strawberries and angel food cake (my favorite), the look on my sisters faces when they dug into their duel birthday cakes, and my daughters own birthday parties. Not just birthdays either, my grandparents wedding anniversary, my dads graduation, my wedding day and my sisters graduation party are just a few of the memories I have that stem from custom partyware and delicious treats. Sweets Indeed was born out my desire to help others create the same, sweet memories.
Daddy and I. We LOVE chocolate chip cookies, hostess cupcakes, and donuts.
My adorable twin sisters and their confetti cakes.
Mom made angel food and strawberry cakes for me almost every year.
Bean and Nana prepping for one of their infamous tea parties. All sugar free!
Bean and her bumble bee birthday cake from last year.
When I officially launched Sweets Indeed in 2009, my hobby had taken on a life of it’s own. When times are tough financially, I think the population looks forward to special occasions even more. It’s a chance to gather with loved ones and forget daily struggles, embracing a new baby bump, a child’s first birthday, college graduation, a wedding, an anniversary, and more. I have seen the “party industry” grow and boom with success as I think many more parents are becoming DIY’ers and those that aren’t still want to make sure that their special event is truly unique to them. There’s a need for customization and room for new, innovative takes on popular themes and fresh color palettes.
This is where our BIG PLANS come in. I receive daily inquiries asking how people around the globe can get their hands on our Circus Party or Nursing Station. YOU want to know how to create Sweets Indeed’s look even if you are unable to hire us directly for catering. YOU want something new, something custom and to feel like your wedding day or your child’s birthday is unique. I do not like to say “no” to anyone. Or, “that isn’t available to the public yet.” I hear your requests and for the past year and a half, I have been working on a 4 part expansion project.
Although I must continue to protect our ideas until they come to fruition, my desire to share is so HUGE and me being a NOW person does not help keep me quiet. That being said, I’d like to share a peek into what our plans are and how YOU can be part of this exciting, sweet journey with me. I’ll be as vague, yet informative as possible. Ha! Is that even possible?
1. The brick and mortar store front:
A one-stop shop where everyone from party/event planners to your next door neighbor can acquire everything they need to create a successful Sweet Station and customize a special event.
I personally visit at least half a dozen different shops when I am creating a Sweet Station and I have yet to find a place where everything is under one roof AND there is the ability to custom create. This sweet shop will go beyond the “by the pound”, tasty candy store/bakery to a full supply store filled with everything from cake stand and candy jar rentals to backdrop, hanging decor and more. A whole section will be dedicated to gift and party favor making where many different packaging/decorating styles with be available for custom creations. Sweets? Oh yes. Bulk, affordable candy and treats in a plethora of colors. Have allergy/health concerns? No problem. We’re dedicating a portion to sugar free, nut free, gluten free, kosher, vegan and beyond. No one is left out!!
I also hope that Sweets Indeed will become a platform for other small business owners to showcase their crafts and confections. Part of what makes Sweets Indeed unique is that we utilize local, “homemade” creations. We strive to find the best chocolatiers, confectioners, pastry chefs and products. Coupled with our in house team, there are no limitations as to what we can offer and YOU could be part of this as well.
2. Online store:
The online store will be an extension of the storefront. All of our favorite party supplies and custom designs will be available nationwide and eventually, internationally. From Sweet Skewers and Table Tutu’s to packaging and decor, it’s all there! The online store will also showcase #3.
3. Custom line:
I’m jumping up and down about this one. I cannot reveal the official name or full details on this project as it is truly one of a kind BUT I will say that we have been developing a solution that will bring Sweets Indeed to YOU. Whether you’re in Southern California, Florida and eventually internationally, our hope is that Sweets Indeed’s custom themes, branded look and beyond will become attainable for anyone. (I know, such a tease and not enough detail. Practice patience with me?)
4. Sweets In Need.
I have known since the day we came up with a name for our business, that some day I hoped to be successful enough to support an ever growing charity portion of that business. Dedicated to giving back and making life sweeter, Sweets In Need will be the outlet for support to some of our favorite non-profit organizations, local community outreach, and individual donations. The sky’s the limit!
Operations Shower Sunshine Safari
Here’s how you can help us attain these goals.
Click. Type in Sweets Indeed. Vote. Share. Every single vote counts!!
I would also LOVE to hear what your sweetest memory is. Please feel free to comment below!
Thank you so much for your continued support and encouragement. Life is sweet, and I truly hope to help make life sweeter for you and yours.
I have found my new favorite shop and I get all giddy just thinking about it! If you haven’t been to InvenTori, you must go. The adorable vintage boutique is located in Sherman Oaks on Ventura Blvd. and is full of everything from cake plates and scented candles, to unique antiques and adorable children’s clothes. I am not even coming close to describing all the treasures you can find. They even have a section for pups! My assistant came home with THE cutest silhouette dog bed during our latest visit. Each time I go in, something new has found it’s place among the favorites.
At the beginning of the month, Intertwined and I had the pleasure of setting up a few tablescapes to bring some Halloween spirit to the store. I am a huge fan of Intertwined. Part of their “about us” section embodies exactly who they are and what I’ve seen them do is truly magical. “We strive to elevate the brilliance of your love through an exquisite event that showcases your style. Let us handle the planning, so you can enjoy the moment you ‘become intertwined.’” How perfect is that? You must check out their portfolio and stay in touch via their blog.
For the tablescapes, the goal was to utilize as much of the items sold in InvenTori as possible, giving shoppers ideas on how they can create their own gorgeous tablescape or Sweet Station. There are so many beautiful pieces to choose from!
Intertwined transformed the antique table into something straight out of a magazine. With place settings, folded napkins decanters, a natural runner and lavender sprigs to personalized menu’s by Cherish Paperie, every detail was well thought out. I definitely want to recreate this look at home. All the plates, goblets, medicine bottles…pretty much everything used in their setting was “picked” from various locations around the shop. It was fun seeing the girls flit about and see how creativity in motion.
I called upon The Polka Dot Pickle to create an adorable fabric pennant banner and some of the paper goods. She also helped with the covered embroidery hoops that we used as decor. I am in LOVE with this new shop and cannot wait until she’s back from her honeymoon to see what’s next. She can sew just about anything, is a crafting queen and is pretty much a creative genius. Aren’t the spiders hanging from the banner just the perfect touch? You can see it happily hanging over our cake from last year’s Love at First Bite dessert station.
For the candy station, we used cake stands, mixing bowls, a vintage scale to display the sweets. We wanted to include some gourmet candy items along with the traditional Halloween favorites. The table is full of everything from pumpkin spice malt balls, candy coated gumdrops and candy corn to sour candies, gummy frogs, pumpkin creme mellows and huckleberry taffy. We also have our Halloween Sweet Skewers in shop! To enjoy, simply ask for a favor box and you will be handed a black cat take away to fill with all the treats you want for only $7.
Now on to the giveaway!! If you have or are planning on stopping by InvenTori, do it before October 31st. Snap a picture of either display (we’d love to see you in front of it) and email it to firstname.lastname@example.org. We’ll post it on our Facebook page and enter you into a drawing to win a dozen of our Holiday Sweet Skewers. We have some fun Hannukah and Christmas ones coming out soon. We will announce the winner on October 31st!
Trick or Treat!!