Bulgarian Rhapsody

As a person, who crossed borders several times, I consistently experience nostalgia for home. I miss the air, the food, the music, the people.  I miss walking for hours everyday and staring at the local boutiques.I miss the endless coffee chats with friends, the corner stores, and noise on the streets. At home, everything feels and taste better. I wonder sometimes if I am nostalgic about home or just nostalgic about the past. I came across this extremely talented Bulgarian photographer Irina Kuneva who captured so beautifully the spirit of Bulgaria - the way I remember it - beautiful, ancient, peaceful, and fun. I just love the retro feel.

Classic Circus Tablescape for $20

A few months ago, I had an opportunity to participate in an amazing event design challenge called "Boy Bash on a Budget" organized by Spaceships & Laser Beams. The rules were simple, but the challenge was not easy. Each of the participants was given the opportunity to  choose their theme and printable collection and a very small budget to execute either a dessert table or a tablescape. 

I chose to create a vintage circus themed tablescape.

The Location: The photo shoot took place in a historic building from the 1900 in downtown Edmonton. The old exposed brick walls and the aged oak parquet floors created the perfect setting for this vintage inspired circus collection. 

The Concept: Inspired by the colours of the printable collection, I designed the tablescape in rich and vibrant colours – mustard yellow, turquoise, reds and oranges. I wanted the tablescape to look wacky, funky and crazy, so I used a variety of shapes, textures and colours. To complete the circus look and feel, I also incorporated balloons and traditional candy apples.

Table Centrepiece: To create the artificial cake centrepiece, I repurposed one of my daughter’s hat boxes. I covered it with tickets and printables and topped it with more yarn balls and a flag. To preserve the boyish charm of the party, I used lots of yarn and buttons to create the funky centrepieces.

The Table Details: To decorate the back of the chairs, I made pinwheels with vintage craft paper I owned, which complimented the colours of the printable collection. I also used pinwheels to decorate the favour boxes, which I had left from my son`s birthday party last month.

Here is how I spent the $20:
Tablecloth - $5.00. I bought the tablecloth at a warehouse clearance sale at a local event rental company. They had some great items and amazing prices.
From the Dollar store, I bought the following items:Craft mini balls - $1.00
Balloons (25) - $ 1.00
Yarn – 2 x $1.00=$2.00
Buttons - $1.00
Tickets - $1.00
Apples  - $3.00
Paper Cups -$1.00
From a thrift store, I bought the colourful desert plates for $3.00 and the red candy jars $2.00.
I borrowed the tables and chairs. I own the cake stand, the vases, the dinner plates, the napkins, the paper boxes, the ribbon and the wooden sticks that I used for the candy apples.
I was blown away by the creativity and the talent of the challenge participants. I encourage you to take a look at their featured parties. In fact, I am planning on doing a post featuring my favourite submissions, so stay tuned.
Photography: Raffaella Loro
Styling: Canadian Hostess
Printables: Spaceships and Laser Beams

Nautical inspired birthday party

In February, my little one turned 3. We decided to do a nautical theme this year. My son loves boats, so a nautical theme seemed natural and very fitting. So I employed the help of some very talented vendors to create the seaside atmosphere for my son's 3rd voyage: Bluebird Cakes designed this amazing boat cake, Haute Chocolate created the lovely favour tags and food cards and Green Beansie Cards designed the menu, the flags and the welcome sign. The nautical details included a homemade ribbon lifesaver, a sailboat sweets bar, and favor boxes wrapped with sailing rope. Sweet treats included anchor vanilla cake pops, red velvet lifesaver cupcakes, a fantastic sailboat cake filled with lemon buttercream, and mascarpone strawberries. 

Design and Styling: Canadian Hostess
Cake and cupcakes: Bluebird Cakes
Printables: Haute Chocolate and Green Beansie Cards

L'amour, l'amour - vintage style sweet table for Valentine's day

Valentine's day is just around the corner so I wanted to share this vintage style sweet table that I created today. To create the backdrop, I used pages from an old book. I imprinted the hearts and the letters on the pages and glue them to a foam board. It was super easy to make and I think this would be a great idea for a vintage style wedding. You could imprint anything - the names of the bride and the groom, the date of the wedding, special message, etc. I accomplished the vintage look and feel by using burlap, mason jars and bottles, and vintage lace accents. The sweet table featured: lemon merengue cake, shortbread cookies, salted caramel macarons, chocolates on a stick, L'amour macaron (oversized raspberry macaron with creamy filling and raspberries - I swear this was the most delicious thing I've ever had), candy, mini s'mores and pink lemonade. Hope this lovely spread will inspire you to create something wonderful for your special ones on Valentine's day. 

Pretty in White

Bright, simple, clean and classic - there is something magical about white spaces.  White linens, yarn balls, white ceramics and lace ornaments make the living spaces dreamy, amazing and inspiring. Dreamy whites paired with repurposed and worn furniture is a poetic and beautiful combination that creates an enchanting decorating scene. Take a look at these dreamy whites.

Source: centsationalgirl.com via Vania on Pinterest
Source: flickr.com via Vania on Pinterest

Source: google.ca via Vania on Pinterest

"Whiskey, Chocolate and Cigars" Sweet Table for Gentlemen

"If I cannot drink Bourbon and smoke cigars in Heaven than I shall not go"
 – Mark Twain

It's been such a busy Holiday season and I have to admit I fell of the blogging wagon.  I am back in the saddle and ready to share some exciting parties and entertaining ideas. Let's start the new year with some "Whiskey, Chocolate and Cigars". The sweet table below was in honour of my sweet husband and my brother in law's birthday. Both of them are Christmas  babies and their birthdays are always getting overshadowed by the Christmas euphoria. So this year I decided to do something special for them. I wanted to create a sweet table that has a masculine feel and an old world charm. I wanted to keep it clean and simple. Burlap tablecloth, acorns, rustic ornaments and leather accents really added a unique, classy and old fashioned flair to the party. The cigar box in the centre was the birthday cake. I am not kidding...people thought that it was a real humidor.