The Party Collective

color_TPC_logoHello friends!

I have started a new business venture, The Party Collective. I sell Bash Box, a color based party kit, as well as other delightful party goods. Please check out my new website and blog, as well as my Etsy shop.

You can follow my shop on Instagram @thepartycollective, on Twitter @thepartycollect, and on Pinterest @rmlouws.

Thanks for your support, we hope to see you at The Party Collective!

xo,

Rachel

vancouver usa half marathon

Last weekend I finished my second half marathon! You might remember running a half marathon was on my 2012 Goal List, well I’m happy to say I conquered every one of those 13.1 miles. It had been a long week including a little encounter with the stomach flu, a cross country airplane trip with my 14 month old and only one day to recover before heading down to the race, but I still made it. (And so did Isla, which is also amazing.) My goal was to run in under 2 hours and I came in at 1:57, so I’m pretty happy with that.

Here I am before the race! Ready to run!

All done, posing with half my cheering section.

For those of you who have known me for a while, you may be surprised to see me love running so much. (Let’s just say that gym class was my least favorite part of the school day.) I absolutely love running. I have a great running partner, so the miles go by quickly, and I feel so strong and empowered after a big run. I also hope to be an inspiration to Isla showing health, strength and confidence.

Lastly, thanks to my husband for being so supportive and encouraging when I doubted myself. :)

new table

So that my husband knows that I love him, I had to do a special post on the new table he built us. (as if I wasn’t going to!)

We have been using the same small round table that I had in my college apartment, so with the talk of our kitchen remodel (that still hasn’t happened yet) we knew we wanted to upgrade our kitchen table. As a person who likes to entertain, it’s a little ridiculous that I had a 36″ round dinner table.

I have to admit, I was a little nervous to have a larger table in our space because I was afraid it would make everything a little tight, but we measured the table out on the floor using masking tape and decided to go for it. I’m so glad we did, it seems to fit our kitchen so much better than the smaller table. It’s amazing how much better the scale of this table is in the room.

I’m still in the market for a bench (something I can hopefully recover) and a few perfect chairs, but for now, this is a happy addition to our kitchen.

This image was my inspiration:

 

Here is how it turned out:

Isla’s high chair sits at the head of the table. We took the tray off so she uses a plate on the table just like we do.

BJ did a great job hand crafting this piece. Let me know if you want more details and I’ll have him do a guest post on the specifics.

Sorry for the sporadic posting. I have had requests for more posts, I have lots of posts written in my head, so I’ll start working on them ASAP!

Steve and Jamie: Published

Congrats to our friends Jamie and Steve Moore! Their wedding was just published in the newest issue of Martha Stewart Weddings. You might remember me talking about their wedding here. Well, the “real” photos can finally be shared! Be sure to take a peek at this gorgeous fete, it is absolutely breathtaking, Michele M. Waite captured their day perfectly and of course, Steve and Jamie did an amazing job creating their dream day. Better yet, Steve and Jamie are a perfect match, you can tell that married life suits them perfectly. Congratulations guys!

 

isla’s first birthday

I love birthdays. It’s the only day you get to celebrate the pure existence of a person. This birthday was especially significant since it was my little Isla’s first. It also marks the anniversary of our little family becoming three.

So without further ado, here are tons of photos and details of the celebration I put together for our little lady.

I went with a glitter/sparkle theme and used the colors mint, pale pink, peach and gold to pull it off. I made most of the decorations myself and baked (with the help of my mom) all of the tasty treats.

Here is a link to my Pinterest board that I made to collect inspiration.

The invitations had sparkly bows on the front and fun, playful sparkly polka dots on back. I made each of the bows, but I promise, I didn’t individually sparkle the polka dots, I bought that paper and cut it to fit the back of the invites.

I served a dessert buffet, mostly full of cake, but there were also glitter almond sandwich cookies, peppermint patties and vanilla meringues. The large mint colored cake and the small peach cake was Smitten Kitchen’s Golden Butter Cake. The medium sized peach cake was Champagne Glitter Cake inspired by Appolinas.

I decorated the cakes with buttercream frosting, sanding sugars and disco dust. Unfortunately these photos don’t really do the cakes justice, they really did sparkle.

I found this sparkler candle from a little shop in Ballard way back in November and knew it would be perfect for this little fete.

Guests sipped on pink lemonade, a sparkling cocktail made with champagne, grapefruit juice and grenadine and small cartons of organic milk. And there were also paper straws in complimentary party colors.

I covered our kitchen table (BJ finished it just in time) in white butcher paper and lined homemade party hats down the center. I had crayons on hand for guests to draw while they were hanging out.

Inspired by Confetti System, I made tassel garland from crepe paper, mylar and rope trim. I hand cut confetti from the scraps left over from the tassel garland which I scattered down the table and around the desserts. All of the desserts were displayed on my jadeite cake stands which sat on top of a pink striped tablecloth.

I also made a Fancy Frill Balloon using crepe paper, tinsel and a gigantic 36″ round balloon. If huge balloons don’t make you happy, I’m not sure what will.

We had so much fun celebrating our little girl. The weather was perfect and we had a full house of people who we’re so thankful to call our friends. Isla rocked the celebration despite the fact that she only had one nap.

Believe it or not, this is the best group photo we got of (most of) the kiddos.

PS: thanks to my parents for all of their help. There’s no way, I could have pulled off all of this without their help. And to my husband, because, obviously. Thanks, also, to dear Megan who came all the way up from Seattle just to celebrate little I. She was also our official photographer. :)

PPS: Isla’s little dress was custom made by my talented mother. I don’t have a great photo of the whole thing, but it has the cutest cap sleeves and bubble hem. Thanks, Mom!

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