Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Party We Love: Fairy Garden Party by TomKat Studio

So, Chandelier recently entered the Twitterverse--and thank goodness we did! The inspiration from our fellow planners, designers, and party pros is overwhelmingly AWESOME! So glad to have met @ilovelollipops, @paperolive, @prettypenstudio, @weddingchicks and @ruffledblog this week.

We're thrilled to share our most recent style find from our new friend Kim Stoegbauer, the super-talented blogger/party-paper-designer/work-at-home mom of two of The TomKatStudio--what she describes as her "creative outlet to share new party designs, decorating projects and fabulous finds." 

Kim threw this precious Fairy Garden Party for her beautiful daughter Kate. We absolutely adore the "rainbow sherbet" color palette of pink, orange and lime--especially the paisley fabric backdrop!  And, the adorable fairy silhouette motif designed by Pen 'n Paper Flowers, the tissue paper fairy wands, tutus, fairy wings, and sweet candy treats! We've compiled a gorgeous photo recap for you--so beautifully captured by Vicki Lynn Photography.

Want to steal this look for your next little girl soiree? The TomKat Studio Fairy Garden Collection is now available at Kim's Etsy shop where she sells printable party designs and DIY projects. By the way, Kim also contributes to Project Nursery, and contributes to the Homegoods style blog. (Does this girl ever sleep?!) 

Monday, March 29, 2010

Destination: Wedding! "Boarding Pass" Save-the-Dates

                                                                                                                                                                           Photos Courtesy of Beyond Design on Etsy

With so many couples choosing far-flung destinations for their big day, a frequent style request we get at Chandelier involves boarding pass, passport, and ticket save-the-dates! So, we were so excited to find these chic collections by Beyond Design on Etsy this week!

Starting at $1.90 per set (plus $1 each for additional pages), these super cute international invites can be customized by your location, color palette and feel (vintage Pan Am? chic Jet Blue?). No need to order site unseen. For small deposit ($30 that's deducted from the final balance), you get a design consultation either by email, phone, or in person (if you live in the St. Louis area), up to 3 digital samples of your design in a JPG proof sent via email, up to 1 printed sample of your design sent via USPS mail.

A few more favorites from this creative collection!

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Obsessed! Ippolita Rose Quartz Bangles

Recently, while shopping at Neiman Marcus, I came upon a trunk show for Ippolita and fell head over heels for their rose gold line (though their entire collection is breathtaking). Though already discovered by celebrities including Jennifer Garner, Kate Winslet, Carrie Underwood and Fergie, I still feel like I've discovered something completely new. So, let me bring these beautiful baubles to your attention, brides!

As Ippolita herself proclaims, these special pieces are "wearable art". Every piece is made by hand--and comes in a wide array of metals (gold, silver and rose gold), stones (diamond, quartz, topaz, opal, turquoise), and styles (rings, bracelets, necklaces and earrings). Take a look at some of my favorites including this stunning "Lollipop London Blue Topaz & Diamond" pendant set in gold for $995.

I think your wedding is worth the splurge, don't you? Wink, wink.

Friday, March 26, 2010

Bejeweled Clutches: Brooch Bouquets by Fantasy Florals

                                                                                                                                         Photo: Alice Hu Photography

Sometimes, we spot something so refreshing and so beautiful it's no wonder that it takes the wedding blogworld by storm. I first heard about these beautiful brooch bouquets on Facebook (shout out, Jennifer Gillespie!) after she saw them on one of our all-time favorite wedding blogs, What Junebug Loves

Needless to say, I fell in love at first sight!  

These bejeweled bouquets by the uber-talented Amanda Heller of Fantasy FloralsEach brooch is carefully selected and hand-wired by Amanda making these bridal accessories the ultimate of one-of-a-kind! Of course, the colors are absolutely stunning--from blends of fruity corals, fuchsias & turquoise to rich blends of coppers, golds, and pearls. And the best part, it remains as beautiful as the day you carried it down the aisle for decades to come.

Check 'em out at

Monday, March 22, 2010

Trend We Love: Couture Calligraphy Invitations

At Chandelier, we're always looking for a fresh spin on traditional wedding elements. That's why we love these Isabelle Lynne Signature Designs, a couture line of custom calligraphy invitations. Each suite is individually hand-lettered by master calligrapher Jennifer Medley Gillespie and letterpress or flat printed. Designs can be customized with your choice of calligraphy and color. All invitations come with a single mailing blank envelope and a response set that includes response card and blank envelope.

I particularly like the Elegance suite (pictured) which features a layout with classic ornament designs on the top and bottom of hand-written calligraphy text. Printed in 1 and 2-color layouts in both digital flat print (on linen-finish textured paper) or letterpress-printed on 100% cotton tree-free Crane's lettra paper. Make sure you check out all the options Jennifer offers for calligraphy fonts for your envelope-addressing, too!

Love this trend, too? Here are two more hotspots for cool calligraphy invitations: Paperfinger and Bella Figura.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Grilling Up a Backyard BBQ?

Perhaps it's the cabin fever from a stormy weekend, but tonight we're inspired by a fan request for anniversary backyard BBQ ideas! So here's a few ideas we've pulled together to get your creative juices flowing. 

The beauty of throwing a summer party is a simple menu. Of course, the traditional fare (hot dogs, hamburgers, and shish kabobs!) are always a given, but if you're in the mood to add a bit of the Hamptons to your hometown shindig, we suggest adding a special to your menu: lobster rolls! Try this great recipe or order a copy of this cookbook by the famous LUNCH on Long Island's East End. If you'd rather be chilling than grilling, many caterers offer BBQ packages where they haul everything in, right down to the the red-checkered tablecloths and lemonade spigots! In the New York area? Call my friends over at Thomas Preti Caterers (212-764-3188), who offer this amazing summer BBQ menu. And no matter what you choose, go local! There is nothing sweeter than farmstand corn-on-the-cob. For dessert, it's all about fruit! So pass some (spiked) popsicles, grill up some peaches, and get fresh with whipped cream parfaits.

Mason jars, galvanized buckets, potato sacks, and lanterns...mix it up a bit because there's no such thing as matchy-matchy in your backyard. is a one-stop shop for all of those items at a good price. The key to pulling it all together is a uniform color palette like red & white (seen in this photo by our friend Matthew Robbins)--and no need to spend a fortune. Pick an inexpensive bloom (like these white dahlias) in a single color to make a big impact on just a few pennies. Carnations and gerbers also work for this purpose. The key to summer flowers at backyard bashes? Durability. Don't waste your dime on flowers that'll wilt or brown in hot weather (like gardenias, sweet peas or lily of the valley). Consult with your florist on your safest bet. Cover your tables with a conscience: in 100% recycled kraft paper . Simply roll it out, cut it, and toss back into your recycled paper stash at the end of the night. Be sure to place colored pencils at the kids table for a built in activity! (Skip the crayons if its super hot--they'll melt. Trust me, it's happened!)

Bugs can totally put the kibosh on summer fun--so don't skip out on offering protection. Have a basket of family-friendly, fresh-smelling bug repellent sprays for those who'd like to keep themselves bite-free, and stock up on that citronella. If you're feeling super-craft, you can even make your own candles like these! 

Keep the requests coming. . .We're loving all this event inspiration! Oh, and that awesome retro Lemonade Spigot is from Uncommon Goods. It's an investment at $135, but I think it can be used 135 times, don't you? 

PHOTOS: The Knot, Martha Stewart, Matthew Robbins Design/Artfool,

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Modern Seder: A Fresh Take on Your Passover Table

Chandelier Events: A Modern Passover
In Thursday night's installment of  Chandelier's Facebook-Fans-On-Demand Planning Advice series,we are taking on Passover 2011. This traditional dinner celebrates one of the holiest days of the year for Jewish families--and is a wonderful time to come together and enjoy a meal. While the traditions and prayers should remain the same, there's no reason not to spice things up a bit with the presentation--so long as matzoh is on the menu! Here are some items I think would make great additions to any seder table:

Kosher wine is a mainstay, but I suggest picking up some stemless glassware like this set $24.99 at Macy's. Traditionally, there are four glasses of wine (and a fifth for Elijah!) these will not only add a touch of Calvin Klein to your table, but will prevent inevitable spillage on your beautiful linens from reaching over to pass the brisket. 

While Manischewitz will always make an appearance at my holiday table, I urge to to check out the incredible selection of kosher wines out there. Moscato, Chardonnay, Reisling, Shiraz, Merlot--even Pomengranate wine is now available for your choosing. Check out sites like (here are their best-sellers), and if you're a real Jewish oenophile join the Kosher Wine Society (yes, there is one) who hosts regular events at NYC's City Winery.



  • 12 cups washed and dried salad greens of your choice (spinach, mixed spring greens, arugula, whatever you desire)
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 3/4 cup slivered almonds
  • 3 11-oz. cans mandarin oranges, drained (strawberries, grapes, and dried cherries also work)
  • 1 purple onion, sliced
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/4 cup white vinegar
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 Tbsp. parsley, snipped
  • 1/2 tsp. salt


1. Shake all dressing ingredients in a tightly covered jar. Refrigerate for at least one hour.
2. Cook and stir almonds and sugar in a skillet over low heat until sugar is melted and nuts are coated. Cool on wax paper. Break apart. Set aside.
3. Toss dressing with salad greens and arrange on plates. Top with orange sections, onion slices and sugared almonds. 
From: Our Customers Favorites by Paula Levine Weinstein and Julie Komerofshy Remmer (Columbus, OH)

For those of us who celebrate Passover, we've gotten used to "Kosher-for-Passover" desserts which generally consist of macaroons and flourless chocolate cake. But GOOGLE is a beautiful thing! There are so many kosher sweets and recipes out there to choose from! So, get busy whipping these yummy haystack macaroons and chocolate-covered matzoh crunch, and order some kosher candy like chocolate marshmallow twists, Barton's chocolate lollycones, and decadent fudge brownies (yes! brownies). Then, set your kitchen island up as a dessert buffet to rival any Bat Mitzvah---use cake plates, platters, candy dishes and martini glasses to create your spread. Your guests will surely leave in a sugar coma!

This post is dedicated to my mom, who hosts Passover with aplomb every year!

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Chandelier on Demand: Cookies 'N Milk Party

A Chandelier Event: Cookies 'N Milk Party

Continuing this week's Facebook-inspired party planning Q&A, tonight it's all about the little guys in your life. One year old bambinos may not yet be into Superman and Cars, but rest assured, they'll give a chuckle when Cookie Monster makes an appearance at their birthday bash. Here's some tips and ideas!

All too often, my friends and clients call me totally overwhelmed with options for kid's birthday parties. The K.I.S.S. method (keep it simple, stupid) totally applies here. Make your job easier by narrowing down your choices for food, color, characters, activities--in this case, Cookie Monster is our hero, a cookie buffet is the menu, blue is our color, and milk is our beverage of choice! Another easy idea? A Make Your Own Pizza Party where the activity is the menu! 

Clever invitations can whipped up quickly and inexpensively. For the cookie bash, you could send a recipe card or blue index card tied with a ribbon to a cookie cutter or wooden spoon. Ask friends to bring their favorite cookie recipe to the party to contribute to your family recipe stash (believe me, I bake every other day with my four year old and I wish I had a bunch of new recipes to try out). 

Kids love to color...and now sites like,, PinkyDinkyDoo.Com and all have FREE printable pictures of kids' favorite characters. Print them out, xerox them, and spread them on the table with a collection of crayons, color pencils and (ERASABLE) markers.

Many cookie mixes have peanut butter, tree nuts, walnuts, pecans--all delish, but totally dangerous with a bevy of toddlers in tow. If you plan on baking cookies with allergy-sensitive children around, seek out a special nut-free cookie mix like the ones from Cherrybrook Kitchen that are nut-free, dairy-free ...and they even have gluten-free!

Now, if only I could tell you how to not gain a pound or two while planning this party!

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Chandelier on Demand: "A Fairy Happy 1st Birthday"

This week we received some fabulous requests via our Facebook fanpage! So, by popular demand, here's a little virtual party planning advice. Our first theme: well, we like to call it a 'A Fairy Happy 1st Birthday' (although this can apply to anyone who fancies the girlie side of things). This collection of items would make for a great, DIY girlie birthday bash--and yes, they're all affordable ways to add a touch of sass to your soiree. A few more tidbits:

Nothing says "sweet" like candy! Bubblegum, lollipops, maltballs, jellybeans, conversation hearts--they all scream "little girl!". Shop online at sites like Be sure to set a candy budget, then work backwards by color or theme. Their consultants can help you get the most candy for your buck. Then display in plastic buckets, vases, pitchers, glass bowls, anything you can find in your cabinet or your local Homegoods.

Stock your iPod with girlie tunes by The Ting Tings, Cyndi Lauper, Madonna (Holiday!), and some Disney Radio (Miley, Selena, HSMusical, etc.). Have an iPhone or laptop handy? Create a Pandora station. For a grown-up girls night out, I recommend a "Duffy" station for tunes by Adele, Norah, Amy Winehouse, Duffy, Lily Allen, etc. Nothing like a little "Mercy"!

Think costumes are only appropriate for Halloween? Ask any parent, and they'll agree that their child will excitedly dash to their dress-up stash if given the opportunity to come in costume! Request costumes of their choice, or give a theme (a friend of mine threw a Pirates-and-Mermaids party). BYOC -- or Bring Your Own Costume -- makes for amazing photos and an instant activity. 

Stay tuned to Chandelier! Next, we'll address "A Big Boy Birthday Party!", a backyard BBQ, and more!

Monday, March 1, 2010

Springspiration (Thanks, Pottery Barn!)

If you've been following my blog since the beginning, you may recall that one of my favorite sources of inspiration for table and event design (along with the Home Depot paint chip display and the Benjamin Moore iPhone app) is the Pottery Barn catalogue. Well, Spring 2010 arrived in via the Post this week--and wow, are there some great ideas inside its pages! Whether you're throwing a casual backyard soiree, a housewarming bash or an elegant outdoor wedding--these images scream "fresh!"  Check out these cool shots. Oh, and I am kind of obsessed with these birds'-nest placecard holders! Where do you get your everyday inspiration?