Wednesday, February 6, 2013

party style: valentine's day!

if there is one thing i love, it's a killer party. but, since i am literally the busiest person on the planet (and have really busy friends) a valentines day party just wasn't in the cards for us. but, what to do with all the super fun valentines party ideas? well, after much groaning with ashlee (fellow blogger and awesome party lover), we decided to style a party anyways. for ourselves. and for you!

we met some super awesome gals from the candy company, Airheads, while we were at alt summit and were so inspired by their stories of people using airheads in unique ways (other than turning their teeth fun colors and getting a stellar sugar high) and decided to run with that theme. who doesn't love a good airhead?! (and lets face it, sometimes the two of us have a little extra air in our heads too... it's a perfect fit.)

for our party i made a yummy cake topped with airhead roses and a photobooth backdrop with the signature airheads red balloon. we set it all up just for you! so check out our party table and read my how-to's after the jump!
airhead rose cake!

you will need:
- lots of airheads!! i used the fun size ones and they worked the best for creating rose petals. i think the regular ones would work too, but you might have to cut them down.
- frosted cake - duh, so you can put the roses on it! i used white frosting, but feel free to get crazy!

so i made my cake ahead of time and dirty iced it - i find that more icing usually turns our prettier in this kind of scenario, and i made the layer of icing on the top of the cake super thick so that my roses would stick in it and stay put.

then i started my roses. and got really sticky, so be warned. i started by rolling one of the airheads to be my center, then added each airhead around the center roll to create petals. for some of them, i found that cutting the airhead in half length-wise and then adding it to the rose helped to keep them from getting too bulky. but i only cut half of the airheads i used for each rose. so half i added as their full fun size, and half were the skinnier ones that i cut. add petals until your rose is the desired size. i found that 6-8 airheads usually did the trick. i also cut some of the green ones in the shape of leaves for a little extra flair.

once you have your desired number of roses, add them to the top of your cake and chow down!

so fun. so easy. so delicious! and now for part two of this bad boy - PHOTOBOOOOTTH! (i'm yelling. literally. it's exciting!)

balloon photo-booth backdrop!

you will need:
5 yards of background fabric - i used muslin because it has a good heavy weight - but you could use anything really
1 yard balloon fabric - since our party was airheads inspired, i went with red
1 yard heart fabric
heat'n bond
construction paper - to sketch your balloons and hearts
sewing machine
needle and thread
fabric pins
camera with self-timer
nails or adhesive to hang your backdrop
and fishing weights if you are going to hang it outside - i made the mistake of not doing this and it was a nightmare! we had to regroup inside instead...

ok, so if you have never used heat'n bond - go to the store and get some now because it will change your life. this was my first project using it and oh my gosh is it amazing!

so, let's do this. i got all of my supplies from jo-ann fabrics, but any fabric store should have all the goods. first i sketched out my balloons and hearts to use as a template when cutting my fabric. i also cut out the bottom part of the balloon and the highlight separately, so they could be added as individual pieces. once you have your sketch, cut out all of your pieces and lay them on your fabric. trace around the template and cut out each piece from the fabric you choose. for the bottom piece of the balloon (the part you tie off in real life) i made it a little wider at the base (the part that connects to the balloon) and hand-sewed a stitch through it so that it scrunched a little, like a real balloon would once it was tied shut.

once you have your pieces, cut out pieces of heat'n bond that are a bit smaller than your fabric balloon pieces and hearts. each piece will need the heat'n bond, including the bottom of the balloon, the highlight and the ribbon that will be the string of your balloon. follow the directions on the heat'n bond until every item has the paper backing adheared and ready to add to the backdrop.

i used 5 yards of muslin and cut it down to two 2 1/2 yard pieces. using your sewing machine, sew the long sides of the pieces together so you have a large rectangle. then iron the entire piece (sorry-such a pain, but it has to be done..) and iron the seam down so it lays flat. then lay your backdrop on a bed so you can decide where your balloons and hearts are going to go. pin them in place with fabric pins and iron each one down separately. i ironed down my balloon string ribbon first, so that it would tuck under the balloon, then the balloon, then the bottom piece of the balloon (the part you tie on a real balloon) and then the highlight. it honestly sounds more complicated than it is. promise!

repeat the same steps for each balloon and then decide where you want the hearts and do the same procedure (place, pin, iron) until all your pieces are stuck on. once the whole thing is done, you will probably want to iron a few spots again so that it is all perfect and pretty.

my first attempt at setting this all up failed miserably. mostly because i nailed it to a tree and then cursed myself because of the shadows from trees and the wind. (i didn't think it through so well in round one, and it ended in laughing at my self and ashlee laying on the ground) if i was making this to hang outside again, i would add fishing weights (like sinkers) to the bottom of the backdrop so that it didn't blow in the wind as much.
ash? are you there? FAIL!
 like i said, outside in the tree was a mega fail. as it is, i just decided to relocate the photobooth inside and hang it on a shelf in my house. take that wind! with my super tall helper husband, this was the kind of breeze i like!

so helpful, right? 
once my backdrop was set, i was ready to take some pictures. most camera's these days have a self timer setting, so set that up, get the backdrop in frame, focus the picture, set the timer and make funny faces, dance, jump, laugh, kiss, and play with fun props all night long!

matt and i may have had a litttllleee too much fun with this set up in our living room. i think we'll keep it up for a bit and let our friends play! it really is a bon-a-fide good time.

ashlee made an awesome hot air balloon for our table, yummy sugar cookies and cupcakes (read her how-to's on her blog wondering about wandering.) we were so excited to style this party and it all came out great! with our sweets, photobooth and a few valentines accessories, our party would have been one hell of a good time! hopefully you can recreate our party at your home and enjoy all of its awesomeness!

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