We live in a fast-paced, blue-jeans world with little time for ourselves, let alone for treating others to a white-glove party. But while most of us gather friends at our kitchen counters over takeout pizza or grilled burgers (and we love this!), once in a while it's nice to transform an ordinary party into a memorable fancy event.
How do you dress up a party without breaking the bank or stressing over fussy details? You get creative. It's no different than dressing up your favorite jeans with a cute pair of heels or adding a necklace to give that little dress you wore once to a wedding a new look. You use what you have, borrow things, buy a little of this or that, staying on budget and making it work with creative talent and style. Help from a girlfriend or two makes for less work and more fun.
More important than a big budget, a flair for design or a team of helpers is to put the whole event to prayer. Even for something as small and seemingly insignificant as a party, trust God to provide all you need—from creativity and energy to solutions for things you can't afford. Know His ways are better than ours, so be flexible and thankful.
Trust the Lord even when things go wrong. Remember the story of the wedding at Cana? When the host ran out of wine in the middle of the reception, Jesus commanded the servants to fill jars with water, and He turned it into wine. It was finer than the guests expected. Only God could provide better wine than the host.
Relax and give the best gift of all—fellowship and an opportunity to let God be glorified. Trust the day is a success even when the cake isn't perfect or the guys show up in shorts and the girls in lace. It's all good when God is present so include a Bible lesson and prayer.
For creative inspiration the L:B staff designed three parties—a baby shower brunch, an afternoon tea for a bride and a burger and pizza birthday bash. Take the ideas you like, mix them up and make them your own.
A late breakfast or brunch is the perfect event for a storybook baby shower. This one features a buffet of waffles with toppings served in personal-size containers, small quiches, mini muffins and a towering lemon poppy seed cake with rustic frosting. Decorations include hand- illustrated and colored chicks and bunnies created especially for L:B.
Swedish and Country French rooms inspire this storybook setting, perfect for a baby shower and brunch. Because the look is casual, old furniture can be used with a fresh coat of yellow and warm white paint. If you don't own a white wingback chair, use any upholstered chair and drape it with a heavy white cotton sheet. Tuck fabric around the seat cushion and use safety pins to discreetly secure fabric. A small pillow is covered with a gingham placemat held in place
with diaper pins.
- Scalloped white plates are paired with oversize check napkins. The name card is two layers, held together with a gold diaper pin—cardstock with hand-applied gold dots overlayed with vellum with the guest's name and chick motif.
- Iced Mocha Punch and Refreshing Fruit Infusion are made in advance. Coffee or juice ice cubes keep them cold.
- Four layers of moist Lemon Poppy Seed Layer Cake are separated by Vanilla Buttercream Frosting.
- Make most of this buffet in advance: Orange and Berry Butter Florets whipped and piped into mini spoons, placed on a tray, covered with plastic wrap and refrigerated; Double-Berry Streusel Muffins made the day before, covered when cool with plastic wrap; store-bought, flavored waffle syrups poured into shooters, placed in a cake pan, covered with plastic wrap and refrigerated; Buttermilk Waffles made and frozen in advance and reheated in the oven on a baking sheet while the Ham and Gruyère Quiche Tartlets bake.
- Hand-illustrated and colored bunnies and chicks designs can be downloaded at lifebeautifulmagazine.com.
This afternoon tea celebrates the bride, allowing everyone time to pause and acknowledge the Holy commitment she and her fiancé are about to make. tartlets, French Macarons, finger sandwiches, sugar-topped scones and a Pink Champagne CAKE grace a lovely And friendly table.
This party is all about modern romance—juxtaposing bold, graphic elements with the feminine lines of traditional furniture and flowers. The event is washed in pink from blush to raspberry and sparkles with touches of gold—silverware, trim on the glasses and tea cups, vases and orbs hung from the ceiling. The theme of modern meets traditional is carried out in the food, too. The classic English high tea is made modern with
our easy recipes.
- Float edible flowers in glass cups of Spring Blossom Punch, a refreshing icy slush with a light fruity flavor.
- Serve Strawberry-Melon Soup in a footed glass and stir in a swirl of plain Greek yogurt thinned with milk. The plate liner is a L:B dowloadable design that says, “They Lived Happily Ever After.”
- Set the table with pink dishes (ask a few friends to share the cost, and then give them to the bride and groom for their new home), gold silverware and gold-rimmed glasses and tea cups. Gold flower containers hold peonies, poppies, ranunculus, garden roses, stock, carnations and anemones. Little booklets at the top of the plate guide guests through a Bible study on marriage.
- Smoked Salmon Tea Sandwiches offer dainty bites of flavor.
- Lemon-Berry Cookie Tartlets have a cookie crust that’s filled with purchased lemon curd.
- Tiny Prosciutto-and-Brie Finger Sandwiches go together quickly using triangle-shaped bread toasts you can make ahead of time.
Festive and fast, delicious and easy—these are the goals of the best birthday parties. Here, it's all about good food and good times. Everyone's favorite foods are on the table: burgers, pizzas, fresh salads, chocolate cupcakes and lemonade. Even the happy color palette makes you think of blue skies!
Rustic and modern elements create a fresh, joyful take on the all-American birthday party. Clean-lined picture frames and serviceware on a classic white wooden table make this party up-to-date and ageless, good for guys or girls. Counter a few gold accents with mellow wood tones for the perfect balance. It’s festive without being fussy
- Download posters from lifebeautifulmagazine.com and print them out at a copy center. Add circles cut from metallic paper for a little glitz, then frame them for instant wall décor that doubles as a gift.
- Fresh blueberries float in this delicious Ginger Lemonade with Blueberry Ice that takes minutes to make.
- Guests can choose their own toppings for these fast and easy Individual Veggie Pizzas. The crust can be made from a package mix, biscuits in a tube or your favorite homemade crust recipe.
- Paint wooden silverware using craft paint. Here, blue and white are blended to create an ombré pattern.
- Favors are fun take-home gifts for guests after a party. Look for color-coordinated treats, or package some in our little pillow boxes, available to download at lifebeautifulmagazine.com.
- Desserts don’t have to be complicated to be delightful! Make moist chocolate cupcakes with mounds of homemade Chocolate Buttercream and dress them up with L:B's colorful polka-dot bands.
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