Monday, May 31, 2010

Cake Stand Love: A Color Palette of Cakery

First off, this cake stand is hot! Is it the color I love? The shape? I don't know, but I like it. It's from Sarah's Stands on Etsy. I know, I know...$145 for a 16-inch round cake stand? It's a bit too rich for my blood. But get this:

Her cake stands come in 70 different colors! I love custom colored cake stand goodness. Looking at this chart, Flirt and Smurf are colors I can get behind, but Gangrene or Banos Asbestos? Not so much...But with 70 colors to choose from I think I can work around them. If you've got money to burn and are looking to make a match, get yours at

Friday, May 28, 2010

Friday Giveaway: You Are Invited

This week on Host-It Notes we're giving away a set of 16 invitations from designer Mauricio Arias for your next event. The colors are a muted pink and green—perfect for a garden party, bridal shower, baby shower, or a champagne party on your patio.

To enter to win, email me at or become a Host-It Notes follower via Google Friend Connect—you'll find a link in the column on the right. Contest ends at midnight on Monday (PST). I'll announce the randomly selected winner the next day. Good luck!

Thursday, May 27, 2010

How Does Your Garden Party Grow?

{Clockwise from left: Garden Tool Basket, $59, Wooden Garden Tote, $29, Eclectic Galvanized Metal Planters, $29-$79, Found Bulb Tray, $99, Wooden Garden 3-Tier Stand, $89, Wooden Garden Stand, $59}

My Pottery Barn catalog just arrived, and there's a darling Garden Shop section full of stuff to decorate your outdoor spaces. I think they are perfect for both inside and out. Pick up some of these to throw a garden party-themed tea indoors, or to top a table at a patio party. Forget potted plants; stock the tool basket with wine bottles, use the stands for displaying food and desserts, and serve cocktails or hors d'oeuvres on the bulb tray.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Free Label Love

NYC blogger and designer Julie posted these terrific labels on her website Little Sightings. The labels are available for your use—print them on sticker paper and use them to label, organize, and accessorize. Click here for Julie's post and to download them for yourself.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Cutie Cupcakes

These eensy-meensy cupcakes are such beautiful little bites of sugar! That Winsome Girl made these with a recipe from Julie Hasson's 125 Best Cupcake Recipes, a book I am immediately adding to my wish list. Click here for more pics from That Winsome Girl, plus the recipe. Enjoy!

{Found via Cupcakes Take the Cake, via EpiCute}

Monday, May 24, 2010

Tips for Entertaining from Nesting Newbies

Nesting Newbies has a new issue out, and it's chock full of great entertaining tips for beginners. From a "gourmet" salad bar at home, to jarred parfait desserts or a great new site for finding hand-crafted food (check out Foodzie), you'll find a lot to love.

There is also a section specifically on entertaining, with tips on creating your unique inventory of dishes and decor. A few hot tips from the issue:

* Keep decorative knickknacks, platters and other serving pieces white so they can be put to use as centerpieces—they'll always work together. * Whatever you buy, it must fit into easily accessible storage (if it gets packed away you won't see it, won't use it, and probably don't need it). * Always keep a list of what you have on hand and what you might be searching for to give you focus when you are on the hunt.

I'm personally guilty of over-collecting. I think my husband is worried I'm about 10 years away from an episode of Hoarders. But with a handy list, some great display storage, and a regular pruning back of my collection I'm confident I'll have a colorful, contemporary collection of dishware and decor that gets better every year.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Maker Faire Mania

I'm just back from Maker Faire, and I'm happily exhausted! There was so much to see, do, and eat! First off, let me express my undying love for fair foods, be they street- or State Fair-style snacks. Lemonade, corn dogs, elephant ears (has anyone else enjoyed this sugary treat from my childhood?)—I love it all. New York street fairs are big on crepes, but here at the Maker Faire it was all about the funnel cake.

I spent a long time in the Bazaar Bizarre, where I saw a lot of old and a little new. Highlights included Flimflammery: Art by Bill Robinson. Bill is a fabulous illustrator. His work is like Disney animation with a twist, back when Disney still embraced hand-illustrated cool. As a girl who grew up loving Beauty and the Beast and The Little Mermaid I absolutely loved his work!

Just check out his Sock Monster (above). It's just the tip of the illustrated iceberg, so head to to see more. What did I pick up at the Bazaar Bizarre? Washi tape from The Tinted Mint, cupcake stationery from Motormouthpress, and adorable animal cards made by Fete with Flair. Fete with Flair has a tragically empty Etsy shop, but take a look at the cards below:

Maker Faire was great fun. Crafters, nerds, geeks, Ren Faire fanatics, steampunks, hippies, entrepreneurs and mad scientists all came together to share their Do-It-Yourself dreams. Head to to make it happen for you.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Get Made: Maker Faire Weekend is Here

It's Maker Faire Weekend! For those who haven't heard of it, Maker Faire is an event created by Make Magazine that brings together the arts, crafts, engineering, science projects and everything "Do-It-Yourself." I think of it as Mythbusters meets the Renegade Craft Fair, with a little bit of school science project flavor.

I'm most excited about the Bazaar Bizarre—Maker Faire plays host to the independent crafts fair over the weekend. Look for a report on the indie arts and crafts scene to come! For more information on the Maker Faire around the country (they'll be hosting one in New York and Detroit as well) head to

Friday, May 21, 2010

DIY Fabric Tags

Creature Comforts has a fantastic and simple gift tag idea that's perfect for adding a special touch to presents and has the added bonus of using up any extra scraps of fabric you may have lying around. These styles look beautiful for spring gift giving, but you can switch up the colors and patterns to work for any occasion. Beyond gift-giving keep these in mind for labeling dishes on a buffet, creating name cards, or finishing off favors at your next event.

Thursday, May 20, 2010


This is really more of a permanent chandelier installation for your home than a one-time party decoration, but I can't resist! This chandelier is a show-stopper at Faire Frou Frou, a luxury lingerie boutique in Studio City, CA. The Frou Frou folks were kind enough to share all the details you need to create your own at home.

Click here for the source, more pictures, and DIY instructions.

I've been bitten by bubble-lust before—remember this clear chandelier? I'm feeling a project coming on...

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Curiously Cute Stationery

The Curiosity Shoppe online has a terrific selection of stationery. The most fun is this Message in a Bottle, which comes with a cork-topped bottle, 3 blank scrolls, and packaging for safe delivery. Wouldn't this be fun for pirate-themed party invitations?

An equally interactive notecard is this balsa-wood postcard that turns into a wooden glider. Cute! Lots more stuff to see over at The Curiosity Shoppe.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Friday Giveaway Winner: Cakespy

Congratulations to Laurie Lau Layton! You're this week's winning Host-It Notes reader, and you'll be getting a 10-pack of cupcake-themed cards from Cakespy. Thanks for reading Laurie!!

{The image is from Cakespy—love it! Go there and get some for yourself!}

Tap Into Summer: Drunken Watermelon How-To

Despite this week's rain in San Francisco, I'm dreaming of the days of summer. Here's an idea you'll love for your next barbecue on a blazing hot day. Buy the equipment now to make your own drunken watermelon on tap in the warm months ahead! Click here for a step-by-step tutorial.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Flower Patch Shower

Flower Patch Farmgirl threw a gorgeous bridal shower for a friend and was kind enough to share. It's full of great ideas like a clothesline banner made with vintage-looking handkerchiefs, music sheets as placemats, Scrabble tiles describing the food, simple tin can vases and gorgeous cakestands. Check out more pictures over at the original post on Flower Patch Farmgirl.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Friday Giveaway: Cakespy Sets Up Shop

Congratulations to Cakespy on the grand opening of their new shop this week!! I've been a fan of Cakespy's cupcake-themed stationery for a while now after discovering writer and illustrator Jessie Oleson and her sweetly drawn cupcakes at Brooklyn's Renegade Craft Fair. Luckily, I didn't miss out on the sugar last year when I moved to San Francisco as she turned up at SF's Renegade as well!

As a congratulations to Cakespy on opening up shop, I'm purchasing a 10-pack of Jessie's assorted notecards for one lucky reader as this week's Friday Giveaway. I have this set myself, so consider them writer-tested, Host-It Notes approved. To enter to win, email me at or become a Host-It Notes follower via Google Friend Connect—you'll find a link in the column on the right. Contest ends at midnight on Monday (PST). I'll announce the randomly selected winner the next day!

For all you Pacific Northwesterners, the new Cakespy shop is located at 415 E Pine Street in Seattle. For the rest of us, we hope to see Cakespy at a Renegade nearby soon!

{Photos and illustrations via—Love that little cupcake eating brunch!!}

Thursday, May 13, 2010

When Life Hands You Lemons, Make a Garland

This lovely lemon leaf garland is easy on the eyes as well as the wallet. Materials to make a 12-foot garland shouldn't run you much more than $20 for some lemon leaves, florist wire, and a bit of rope. I found this over at Project Wedding, and though it's great wedding inspiration, it is perfect for any entertaining.

Click here to be taken to a step-by-step tutorial on how to make this citrus-centric centerpiece.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Cirque du Pink

TomKat Studios is showing off the most amazing party! It's a circus-themed party thrown for a little girl's fourth birthday, and it's full of gorgeous paper designs by TomKat Studios and a lot of creativity. They had tubs of cotton candy as favors, fun games for the kids, a cupcake tower and more. I'm captivated by the color and shape of the circus tent featured prominently in the theme.

Head to TomKat Studios where you'll find more photos, more details...more everything wonderful!

{photos via}

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Friday Giveaway Winner: Coffee Cakes

Congratulations to Host-It Notes follower Maria! Maria won a copy of COFFEE CAKES, by Lou Seibert Pappas. Happy baking, Maria, and thanks for reading!

Frosted Stitch Kitsch

I'm one hundred percent on board with a product that makes me look like a frosting pro while requiring almost no work at all. Ticings are thin sheets of edible icing in full sheets or rounds (kind of like an edible sticker) with cute, hip, and kitsch designs. Top your frosted cakes and cupcakes with these for a finished look in minutes. You can even top frosted sugar cookies and brownies. Lovely! I dig the cross-stitch patterned ones they cooked up for Mother's Day. Check them out online at, then just bake and beautify.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Sweet Paul Magazine

I'm a fan of the blog Sweet Paul, and now there's even more to love. Paul has put out his very first issue of the Sweet Paul magazine, and I'm eating it up. It's chock full of recipes, but—even more important to me—it also has great party and home entertaining ideas. Check it out here!

In addition to recipes galore, head to to page 36 for adorable Circus Party theme ideas (I adore the Spots and Banners Carrot Cake), and to page 52 for a section on entertaining at home—obviously a favorite topic of mine. I'll be looking for humdrum vases to paint thanks to this inspiring feature! Finally, check out page 71 for gorgeous flowers frozen in ice that are keeping things cool.

There's so much to see. Enjoy, and a big thank you to Sweet Paul for the inspiration!

Friday, May 7, 2010

Friday Giveaway: Coffee Cakes

What is it about Mother's Day that makes it go so well with brunch? Mother's Day and brunch are like peanut butter and jelly, like two peas in a pod...maybe it's just the grown-up version of kids making their mom breakfast in bed. Either way, I'll be making brunch this Sunday, with a coffee cake as the star. This week's Friday Giveaway is a copy of Coffee Cakes by Lou Seibert Pappas. The contest is open until midnight on Monday (PST). To be eligible to win become a follower at Host-It Notes or email me at (email subject line: Coffee Cake). The winner will be picked randomly and posted here. As always, followers will be automatically entered for this and future contests!

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Freebies from Hey Susy*

Adorable and free? What's not to like? Susy (of SusyJack*) has a few free goodies you can find online, including the pretty little card above. Click here to head to the blog, Hey Susy*, for a free download. And click here for the thank you card below. Voila! Just print and send.

And I know it's a bit early to be thinking about holiday gift giving, but click here for some cute gift tags as well. Enjoy!

Wednesday, May 5, 2010


Sweet Paul is one of my favorite blogs to follow. Paul gets crafty on Fridays, and recently posted this nifty idea that brings new meaning to the word "bookshelf." Grab a vintage book, a few brackets, and put them together for a great look. I've been cooking up a vintage book-themed party in my head, and this might get added to the design. Click here for directions on creating this look in your home. {Photos via Sweet Paul}

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Monday, May 3, 2010

Friday Giveaway Winner: Feeling Punchy

Congratulations to Host-It Notes Follower Rebecca Pugh! Rebecca won a copy of PUNCH, by Colleen Mullaney. Enjoy making some tasty new drink recipes, Rebecca, and thanks for reading!

A Sweeter Thank You

I just love this simple idea from Kami Bigler via Make and Takes. Kami keeps an eye out for little apothecary jars at thrift stores then fills them with inexpensive candies like Lemonheads and gumballs from the dollar store. After the finishing touch of ribbon and a note, you have a simple but special way to say thank you that goes beyond the basic card. I love it!


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