Happy Monday creative ladies! I’m Mindy from a {day} with lil mama stuart and am SO excited to be kicking off Parties & Picnics week.  If you spend a day few minutes with me over at my blog you’ll hear about all the things I love…from party planning, photography, DIY projects, and recipes to plain ol’ life with a 17 month old baby girl in Chicago. Today I’m sharing a Shabby Chic Tea Party.  Even if a sweet girly party isn’t what you had in mind, these basic tips and tricks will apply to any event! I sent a party plan to a momma just one month in advance and she pulled it off beautifully! With a little planning, attention to detail and effort you can create a beautiful event without breaking the bank!

Tip #1 – Find some inspiration that gets you really excited.
If you find something you really love, (an invitation, activity, character, colors, fabric, quote, etc), the ideas will start flowing. After momma saw Paper Candee’s Shabby Chic Tea Party, she instantly fell in love and had a definite vision for her party.
Tip #2: Printables. Not a necessity, but they easily bring together various elements (food, desserts, drinks, giveaways, signs, etc) of an event.

You could make your own with basic programs like MS Word, MS Powerpoint, Photoshop, Picnik.com, etc. Or just surf etsy/the web. There’s a TON for free or for purchase (Chickabug, Hostess with the Mostess, The TomKat Studio, etc)

Tip #3: Etsy!

You can find customizable sweets, unique fabrics, printables, hair accessories, outfits, baking supplies, you name it!

Tip #4: Shop your house and use what you already have. Think outside of the box (you can use items for something other than its intended purpose).
The counter is covered with pink fabric left over from baby girl’s crib bedding set.
To cover tables, use flat sheets from bedding sets, or make a no-sew faux runner by lining up place mats.
Use vases, white plates, cake stands, containers, trays, fabrics that you already have on hand.

Tip #5: Keep an open mind and shop around.
I probably don’t have to tell you DIYers, but check them all out: Joann’s, Michael’s, Hobby Lobby, Target, the Dollar Store etc. Don’t overlook the clearance section! The tray holding the marshmallows (bottom right) was in the 66% off section!

Tip #6: Showoff your pictures.

I’m sure we’re all guilty of having pictures trapped on our computers. Now’s your chance to show them off  with all your friends and family together! Mount them on foam core, make a banner, or frame them and place throughout the venue.

 Tip #7: You can make easy/yummy/pretty desserts with no baking skills.
Momma made all these by herself! And who really complains when it’s covered in chocolate?!

So with the tips above…try to plan ahead, organize all the elements (invite, decor, food, drinks, sweets, and giveaways), pay attention to details and your party will come together. Check out even more sweet photos from this party at Photography by Brie and stop by my blog next week for a full resource list/instructions to pull it off. Can’t wait to see what you all link up on Thursday!

Mindy aka

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