Gingerbread House Decorating Party

gingerbread houses

Alternate title: The Return of Craft Day.

My coworker hardcore mocked me for this today, but I’m not ashamed to admit that I like to host craft days. Yes, I’m twenty-something years old; yes, I have friends; yes, I like to go out…but sometimes it’s nice to take a break from constantly going out, spending money on dinner/drinks/appetizers, and not really having anything to show for it other than a Facebook check-in and maybe a picture of your dinner. It’s nice to sit down at someone’s house/apartment, have a few drinks with friends, and make something. Plus, I like themed activities.

Past craft days have included terrarium building (epic fail) and snow globe making (much more successful). This winter, I decided on gingerbread house decorating.

building gingerbread houses

gingerbread house decorating

We used graham crackers instead of actual gingerbread. This is:

1. Because I didn’t want to buy 10 gingerbread house kits, and

2. Because I think it encourages creativity when you’re not forced into one specific house shape.

I used this royal icing recipe, which didn’t dry as quickly as I was hoping, but when it did dry, it dried like cement. These gingerbread houses are not coming apart any time soon.

eggnog martinis

Going along with the winter theme, eggnog martinis and winter beers were served. I asked everyone to either bring a seasonal beverage or a bag of candy to decorate the houses with. We ended up with a plethora of candy to choose from and some very festive gingerbread houses.

gingerbread houses

gingerbread house

And yes, I created a “gingerbread house gallery wall” for inspiration and decoration.

wpid-2014-12-08-19.27.32.jpg.jpeg

Craft days are the best days. You heard it here first.

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Bachelorette Party Crafts

As I mentioned in my black and pink table set challenge, I hosted a bachelorette party for my college roommate. I wanted to share a couple crafts with you. If you ever need cute (not skanky) bachelorette party ideas, these may help.

1. Bachelorette Bingo

You can download free & paid versions of this on various websites, but I decided to make my own, because I’m crafty like that. Oh and my printer has been out of ink for a year. I knew my friend would be embarrassed if I made these too dirty, so I went for a mix of cute n’ classy and funny-almost-dirty-if-you-say-it-in-a-scandalous-tone.

isteph215.wordpress.com

bachelorette bingo from isteph215.wordpress.com

I simply used index cards to make the deck we would draw from to call words out – no pics, they weren’t that cute haha. I recommend candy hearts for bingo pieces.

2. Koozies

These were actually made by my super adorable friend Claire. She doesn’t have a blog as far as I know, but she probably should. Claire makes really pretty jewelry and apparently koozies, too! I’m sharing them with you because they’re an adorable idea and a great party favor. But just so you know, I’m not claiming I made them or came up with the idea. This was all Claire.

isteph215.wordpress.com

koozies

If anyone’s curious about where she got her materials, I think it was mostly Michael’s, but I’d have to check with her.

We also made mason jar margaritas (semi-successfully), but that’s for a future post!

Creative exercise: (Thrifty) Black and Pink Table Set Challenge

One of my college roommates is getting married this summer. The bachelorette party is in a couple weeks and I’ve offered my place up for pre-gaming fun before we head to the bars. Because I’m such a good friend, right? …It would be entirely accurate for you to detect an ulterior motive -> me wanting to throw a party/decorate.

The Maid of Honor and I agree on a color scheme of black and pink. And then I thought, “Shit, I don’t have anything black and pink. But I don’t want to go buy a ton of stuff. But I want this to be cute.” DILEMMA.

So tonight I challenged myself to come up with a cute idea for the appetizer/dessert bar table set, using only black and pink things that I already had. And then I would determine what I needed to buy to round it out.

I had a ton of fun! ┬áSeriously, I don’t know why I don’t make practice table sets all the time. I love a good creative challenge. (Read: I am a total loser).

This side of the table I’m really liking.

Materials from back to front:

  • Silver shoe box
  • Margarita bottle and fake flowers (usually on my bookshelf lol)
  • Vase and heart garland (leftover from Valentine’s day decor)
  • Pink plastic cups and pink/black plastic silverware (this is just an idea based on shit from my drawers, I would need to purchase a full set of pink and black plastic silverware)
  • Polka dot ribbon (purloined from an event I went to….the napkins were tied with pieces of ribbon and I may have snitched several and hoarded until now)
  • Paper plate with folded up pink shopping bag from Charlotte Russe (this is to represent that there would be a pile of plates and napkins here – probably pink and black)

You can see a tiered dessert stand cut off on the side of the photo. That got nixed in my final arrangement – it just wasn’t going with all the black.

The next photo shows that it still needs a lot of work. For starters, definitely going to need to pick up a tablecloth. And it needs some sort of banner or backdrop behind the table. I have crepe paper streamers for that, but the SassCat would just tear them down, so I’ll wait until the actual event for that.

Try to visualize a black/white tray on top of that black square in the center. There will be cupcakes on that. The piece of black construction paper is also marking the location of a tray of food. I need to get me some serving platters.

The silvery things on the right are actually baking sheets/cake pans. Those represent the height layering I would like to do with whatever food we put there. The menu isn’t really set, so this is all conjecture at this point. Some more polka dot ribbon, and then the back corner would hold cups. Pink, of course.

It’s a start. Something to think about and help me narrow my shopping list as I plan the rest of the party.