Ava turned 2 this October! She has been such a blessing to my life. For this sweet little girl, I had to plan a special celebration just for her.
I have been inspired by the many sweet shoppe parties I have been viewing on the blogs this past year. It is not a theme I have seen around my area, so why not start a trend? I chose her birthday party theme back in January, and started collecting glass jars at that time. In April, once the Easter candy came out, I tried to pick up a few bags and freeze them. (I typically do not think that chocolate freezes well, so I didn't purchase any. But my Sweettart jellybeans tasted just fine for the party!) By October, I had everything that I wanted. Although Ava is only two, she has several older cousins and many adult family members who could help consume all of this candy!
I rented a shelter house at our local park. This is different than where I had it last year - a nicer facility, too. I loved the fact that it had a wraparound porch overlooking our Riverwalk and was walking distance to the park. We had an unusually warm October, so the trees were not as colorful as last year!
As it got closer to the party, I decided to add a soda shoppe twist to it. I then started collecting sodas of all kinds. I knew from the beginning that I wanted to use all six rainbow colors - pink, orange, yellow, green, blue and purple. I wanted to give it the vintage feel of an old fashioned candy shoppe and soda shoppe, so I made sure to use elements like stripes and old fashioned candy jars. Sodas in glass bottles and soda glasses with large straws were used to help achieve this feel. This element was important to me because I lived in Sebree, Kentucky, a very small town, when I was younger. One of my favorite places to visit in Sebree was Bell's Drug Store on Main Street where they served fountain sodas. My parents always let me buy a cherry coke or hard ice cream, hand scooped by the pint!
I made all of the paper products for the celebration, from the invitation to the colorful banners, the birthday, sweet shoppe and soda shoppe signs and also the soda pop bubbles! At the last minute, my mother helped with the sweet treat bags and my friend Erin helped with the cupcake toppers. Thanks ladies! Could not have finished without you!
I also spent about a week and a half in my kitchen, baking for this celebration! To keep costs down, I made my own colored sugar cookies, meringues, oreo truffles, cake balls, lollipop cookies, rainbow burst cupcakes and chocolate cupcakes. (Rather than hire out the services) Phew! I was tired when it was all over and my poor child was slightly attention deprived! :( I was going to attempt to do the cake too, but I am glad I didn't. I wanted the rainbow cake - 6 different layers - in the colors of my party. Well, Shanon from Gracious cakes agreed to tackle this challenge and I am so glad she did! The cake was not only gorgeous, it was DELICIOUS! Thank you Shanon!
I will do a few posts in the next few weeks about different aspects of the party and well as some DIY details and recipes. Although there are a few things I would change, I will try my hardest not to mention them and just end with the fact that love was in the details! I love you, sweet little Ava!
Thanks for your inspiration:
The CityCradle - Thank you for featuring my invitations from Ava's first birthday party, and the fact that you always encourage hand crafted celebrations. Everything you feature and create has such a lovely vintage feel and you are very talented! Specifically, your Sherbet and Spice Party inspired me - from the old fashioned sodas all the way down to the font (used on my invitations), and even the circle banner! (Note my soda bubble banner!)
The TomKat Studio - You inspired me for the theme of this party, and I admire your "mommypreneur" skills! Thank you for your beautiful designs and inspiration! Not only did your lollipop theme inspire me, the bubblegum theme did also. Check out my sweet treat bags! Thanks to leading me to your favorite Sweet Shoppe party post, too! It was also one of my favorites!
Which then led me to this one. . .
Thanks to Eat Drink Chic also!
Pen N PaperFlowers - Such a lovely site written by a talented lady, and many of her posts have a vintage details. I thought her pink lemonade and sunshine party was stunning! I have always loved her recipes and she is quite the "do-it yourselfer" like me. Well, she's better than me! Thanks to you!
Hostess with the Mostess - You have led me to many sweet shoppe birthday parties, and you have great entertaining ideas! Your feature on Sugary Sweet Love Wedding post and Kimora's sweet shoppe party really got me motivated for this theme! Check out the font on her pictures - almost exactly like the lettering on my birthday/sweet shoppe/soda shoppe banners!
Amy Atlas Events - Love your dessert and sweets tables!
Bakerella, The Idea Room, Bake it Pretty - These ladies inspired many of my desserts for this party!
P is for Party, Kate Landers Events, Pizazzerie, Polkadots N Pirates - The list goes on and on!
Thanks for inspiring me!