Parties themed around books are always a love of mine (like Goodnight Moon and Pinkalicious)! Elissa Stone created this darling birthday party for her son. “This party is very near and dear to my heart, as it is inspired by the book I read to my son every night, just before bed (since he was born), ‘Guess How Much I Love You’.” This party has oodles of inspiration for Easter parties too (adorable carrot ideas!)…
“I wanted a very organic, natural feel that was relaxed, fun and informal, using an earthy color palette. Many of the items used were recycled, upcycled and reused. While this party was created for a birthday, it would also work for a Spring or Easter party as well. The primary design elements were ferns and carrots, with bunnies and woodsy elements secondary. The paper designs, including the gorgeous invite, were hand illustrated by the uber talented Kori of Paper & Pigtails. Her designs sent my inspiration over the top and were a huge component to the design of the party.” Elissa of One Stone Events
DESSERT TABLE: I found a vintage sheet with ferns on it from etsy, and that was the base for the dessert table. I just love it! I (with the help of my hubby), created a fence, similar to the one in the book, out of pallet wood and floral wire as the backdrop. Since the story is about BIG Nutbrown Hare and LITTLE Nutbrown Hare, two rabbits, I had BIG and LITTLE versions of each dessert. We served ‘dirt dessert’ in clay pots with adorable fondant carrots by Edible Details, BIG and LITTLE chocolate cake, veggie straw cones that looked like carrots, a cookie garden of carrot and lettuce sugar cookies and carrot cake push up pops, made to look like bunnies (fondant ears also by Edible Details). I purposely left the dessert table ‘loose’ and not so structured, sort of like a botanical garden. I didn’t adhere to my normal ‘perfectly lined up’ regimen of desserts. The raffia bunnies were perfect to play the part of the bunnies in the book. The yarn ball garland was strung across the back fence. However, that was actually created to go someplace else and when my carrot chandelier couldn’t be hung over the dessert table (so sad), I needed that pop of color up there more than where it was originally intended to go. See, we all have glitches.
FOOD TABLE: I wanted the food table to feel more like a farmer’s market, with fruits in strawberry baskets and vegetables spilling from a bushel basket. We served individual cups of mac n cheese (bunnies, of course!) and bunny shaped cucumber & cream cheese sandwiches for the little ones. For the adults, we had 2 types of sandwiches, pasta salad, fruit and veggies with spinach dip, served in a cabbage head (idea from Petite Social here) Everything was very ‘clean and fresh’. The sandwiches were each wrapped with a fern leaf that was clipped from my yard. I also hand painted bamboo cutlery in brown, orange and green. It was a nice touch!
DRINKS: The drink table was one of my favorite details with the carrots wrapped around the drink dispenser (sewn together first), sitting on a stump on the grass tabletop. We served carrot lemonade (recipe here) and in the wheelbarrow, cucumber water in mason jars. Very refreshing…and a huge hit!
- The entrance had a sign that I made out of pallet wood (Guess how much I love two), painted and nailed to a post, a grapevine wreath that was SO easy to make with real ferns and carrots, a small bunting and some paper mache mushrooms, a doormat that was too perfect to pass up (welcome to the garden w/bunny image) and the planters filled with carrots.
- The year in pictures was so simple, but so effective. Mason jars with a photo inside lined up all in a row.
- The guest book was a carrot that Kori of Paper & Pigtails hand illustrated with a place for the guests to put their thumbprint and sign as the greenery. So cute! We’ll frame this and put it in our son’s room. What a nice keepsake. This is a popular idea currently at weddings.
- I decorated the big oak tree with a carrot bunting and pages from the book.
- There was an activity table for the kids to plant seeds and paint little pots as well as a table with coloring pages and crayons.
- Favors consisted of GHMILY stickers and a bookmark, seeds, bunny graham crackers, a bouncy ball and a hand sewn bunny finger puppet (from here). The adults were given a brown lunch bag to fill up with fruit and veggies from the décor so nothing would go to waste.
- I set up the tables as one long feasting table with a fabulous bunting that was strung across the two trees. I used fence pieces as the runners and green and brown glass bottles that I had been saving up as well as mason jar terrariums for the centerpieces.
Every party I do is my favorite one yet, but I really loved doing this party. It was so much work and definitely a challenge decorating with fresh produce for a morning party, but so special and so worth it!
Thanks to Elissa for sharing this special celebration with us!
CREDITS + RESOURCES: Event design/styling: Elissa, One Stone Events: One Stone Events | Hand Illustrated Stationery Suite: Kori, Paper & Pigtails | Photography: Darci Woodiwiss Photography |Fondant carrots and bunny ears: Edible Details |Cookies: Bees Knees Creative |‘BIG’ cake: A Better Cheesecake | Sandwiches: Einstein’s Bagels | Fabric bunting: cucuco (etsy)