Birdie’s 4th birthday party!

Tuesday, October 13th, 2015

Birdie's Ballerina Party! Merriment Events & Ali Williamson PhotographyBirdie's Ballerina Birthday! | Merriment Events & Ali Williamson PhotographyBirdie's Ballerina Birthday! | Merriment Events & Ali Williamson PhotographyBirdie's Ballerina Birthday! | Merriment Events & Ali Williamson PhotographyBirdie's Ballerina Birthday! | Merriment Events & Ali Williamson PhotographyBirdie's Ballerina Birthday! | Merriment Events & Ali Williamson PhotographyBirdie's Ballerina Birthday! | Merriment Events & Ali Williamson PhotographyBirdie's Ballerina Birthday! | Merriment Events & Ali Williamson PhotographyBirdie's Ballerina Birthday! | Merriment Events & Ali Williamson Photography

If only every party were this fun to plan! There’s nothing quite as wonderful as seeing a group of four year olds enjoying a ballet lesson and a special visit from the “real” Rapunzel, “visiting all the way from Disney World.” Special thanks to Amanda Robinson of Sweet Fix for the beautiful birthday cake. The design was inspired by Phrosné Ras’ first festival invitation at Minted. I ordered the invitations way back in July, and had to do an emergency party location switch after they’d been printed. I had twenty beautiful invitations on hand and nothing to do with them, until I saw the most adorable kraft paper gable boxes at heaven on earth If It’s Paper. I used my trusty Martha Stewart large circle cutter to cut the number four design from the invitations for the lunch box decoration. We tied an iridescent aqua balloon to each gabled lunch box. I just love the way everything came together! Thanks to all of our dear family and friends who made Birdie’s birthday so very special.




Sources: invitation from Minted; gable boxes, balloons, plates, napkins, forks from If It’s Paper; custom ballerina cake topper by Sarah of The Small Object; cake by Amanda Robinson of Sweet Fix; pink table linens from La Tavola Linen; Rapunzel from Princess Parties RVA; photography by Ali Williamson of Alisandra Photography

Sweet Fix

Monday, September 21st, 2015

sweet fix bakery richmond virginia

Last week, Brittany and I went to the industry preview party at Amanda Robinson’s new storefront bakery in Richmond’s Manchester district. Sweet Fix is one of our very favorite sources for wedding cakes and small deserts. In addition to event orders, Amanda will now also be selling limited run, carry out desserts (think bombe glacée, creme brûlée, macarons, panna cotta, exquisite cupcakes — all of the good things!). Best wishes on your new adventure, Amanda! We won’t be strangers.

inspired design

Friday, January 6th, 2012

black and gold inspirationblack and gold inspiration

Two of my favorite things — Whistler’s Nocturne in Black and Gold and spun sugar cupcakes topped with champagne buttercream. Although I’m pretty sure the design of the latter wasn’t inspired by the former, the similar gesture of the sugar to the falling rocket in Whistler’s painting illustrates how event design inspiration can come from many places…even your favorite painting.


Whistler’s painting via wikipedia; Spun sugar cupcakes via the curvy carrot

word of the week: fondant

Monday, August 22nd, 2011

pink orange yellow wedding inspiration

Fondant gives cakes a smooth appearance. Although bakers can generally get buttercream pretty smooth, buttercream will never be quite as smooth or as white as fondant. Fondant is also brilliant for another, and often more important reason in Virginia — it protects the integrity of the cake in heat. Fondant is an absolute must if you’re having an outdoor wedding in Virginia and will display your cake during the months of June-September.*

Most people are put off by fondant because they’re worried about the taste or how it’s made. Fondant is a rolled sugar paste that covers cakes after they have been assembled with filling and icing. It is often made from confectioner’s sugar and a binding mixture of gelatin and glucose. It’s completely edible, but it can also be pulled away from the cake when it’s served if you’d prefer.

To see the way a cake is constructed, click over to this diagram.

*Any cake will have trouble standing up to a 90+ degree day, so keep that in mind when you’re planning your event. I’ve seen fondant covered cakes droop on 100 degree days. If you’re planning an outdoor wedding and heat is in the forecast, cut your cake earlier in the evening.


image: cake via martha stewart

spirograph cake

Wednesday, May 25th, 2011

spirograph cakespirograph cakespirograph cake

Adoring these spirograph cakes, a conceptual work, called till you stop, designed by mischertraxler that appeared in the exhibition, “Design Criminals.”

Spotted on Kids Room Zoom

ethereal ombre

Thursday, March 10th, 2011

ombre wedding inspirationombre wedding inspirationombre wedding inspiration

Loving all of the delicate watercolor-inspired ombre details I’ve been seeing lately, from pretty hanging pendants, to cakes, to this brilliant d.i.y. project designed by Joy Thigpen for Once Wed.

photos: Pendant lampshade, place setting and cake via Martha Stewart; Napkins via Once Wed

illustrated wedding details

Monday, March 7th, 2011

illustrated wedding programs

There’s nothing quite as personal & meaningful as a hand drawn wedding detail…

illustrated wedding programillustrated cakewedding illustration

photos: Katie’s programs originally featured here, photographed by Cooper Carras; Program by Anna Bond of Rifle Design; Doodle Cake by My Sweet and Saucy; Illustration by Paperfinger via Wedding Invite Love

mi amor

Monday, February 14th, 2011

valentines day inspirationvalentines day inspirationvalentines day inspirationvalentines day inspiration

Lovely images taken by Katie Stoops at the Jose Villa workshop in Mexico. Styling by Joy Thigpen.

cakes inspired by works of art

Tuesday, November 9th, 2010

Love these cakes, all inspired by works of art.

"damien hirst cake_martha stewart"

{Martha Stewart inspired by the “Spot” series by Damien Hirst}

"tiffany inspired cake"

{Tiffany inspired cake by Maggie Austin Cake}

"vangogh cake martha stewart"

{Martha Stewart inspired by van Gogh}

"wedding cake Theibaud"

{Thiebaud inspired cakes  – photo by Kate Harrison via Green Wedding Shoes}

modern wedding cake inspiration from magpie’s cake

Monday, August 23rd, 2010

"modern wedding cake inspiration"

You might have seen Magpie’s cakes making their debut on some of your favorite wedding blogs. I couldn’t resist posting Maggie’s work here too. You might be able to guess from the look of her confections that Maggie was a ballet dancer. Her cakes seem to float…they’re full of gesture, aren’t they?

"modern wedding cake inspiration""modern wedding cake"

{images courtesy Magpie’s Cake}