friday foto: my favorite party tricks.

If you're in the market for some party tips, here's the how-to with links from Jenna's baptism, starting with the decor, like these most perfect tissue paper fans from Shop Sweet Lulu that are my new favorite party tricks, simply because they are so simple to pop up, and bunched together, well, they're just fun.

I also included the party menu, with a few recipe links. What I find I do increasingly more of, with each party, is glam up store-bought items, most of which I get from our friendly Trader Joe's. Life and time savers.

But, what made this party extremely simple was boxing up the main course - a salad - ahead of time. Just before we headed out to church, I had a furious assembly line going with twine, napkins and forks and while that might have been the least attractive I was all day (physically, in all senses), it really was the best party decision I've ever made.

It was grab and go at its cutest, in my opinion! You can see photos in the original post down below.
+ Shop Sweet Lulu: Tissue paper fans, stripey straws, twine, napkins and tassle garland (not pictured)
+ Garnish: Kraft take-out boxes (in size small) and disposable wood forks
+ Trader Joe's: for all flowers
+ Invitations: designed by yours truly

+ Drinks: sparkling water, sparkling lemonade, sparking blood orange juice (all from Trader Joe's)
+ Appetizers: deviled eggs, melon and proscuitto skewers and Trader Joe's fresh bruschetta with crostini
+ Main: The Barefoot Contessa's lobster and shells salad, with wild shrimp subbed for lobster, garnished with a pile of arugula and Trader Joe's breadsticks on the side (note: Trader Joe's frozen wild-caught shrimp is amazing and very worth it, thanks, mom, for finding them!).
+ Dessert: Trader Joe's meringue cookies, heart sugar cookies (perfect icing coloring tutorial: here) and strawberries and sweet cream cheese

And, lastly, my advice to anyone who asks questions on party planning: start with Shop Sweet Lulu, get inspired, find your color palette, make smart purchases and then get down to business. The end.

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