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Paint Party from Press Paperie

Remember these adorable paint party invitations that we created for Drue’s 4th birthday? Well today we’ve got photos from the actual soirée! When she initially came across the shirt that would eventually inspire the entire look of the celebration, Drue’s mother, Shelby (owner of Press Paperie in Fort Worth, Texas) thought it would be the most darling shirt for an art party – and we couldn’t agree more! Shelby put on the cutest celebration for Drue and friends, complete with festive painterly decorations, embroidered art smocks, and a canvas for each guest to create a masterpiece! We love how she used the theme to inspire the decor – especially the hand-painted table runners and the paintbrushes nestled into the floral accents. What a fun theme for a birthday party!

Custom painterly birthday party invitations from Smock
Paint party birthday girl
Vibrant floral wreath with paintbrushes | Paint party decor
Canvas + artist's smock for a paint party
Birthday girl in Kate Spade
4 year old birthday paint party
Painterly birthday party + bubbly
Paint party centerpieces
Paint party decor
Paint party birthday

All photographs courtesy of Press Paperie 

Zach’s 40th Birthday Party

We’re so excited to share this fabulous birthday party this morning! Our Creative Director, Amy Graham Stigler, recently planned an incredible party to celebrate her husband Zach’s 40th birthday. (Which just so happens to be today!) Back in the day Amy and Zach used to host an annual Valentines Day party – it’s such a great time of year to celebrate and get festive after the chaos of December and downtime of January. Then kids came and the party went by wayside, but this year they decided it would be fun to resurrect the celebration. However, little did Zach know that Amy decided to make the party a surprise birthday party as well, including a card with the invitation asking guests to plan to toast Zach’s 40th birthday at the party. His brother even flew in from Seattle to surprise him and gave the honorary toast.

Zach loves old school rap so a recurring theme throughout the party was 40 oz of Funk complete with 40 oz beers! A mix cd of Zach’s favorite old school rap songs were set out as favors and cocktail napkins were printed with a favorite LL Cool J quote. In true form, Zach donned one of Amy’s oversized chunky gold necklaces. Amy mixed up an assortment of festive punches and set up the fixings for a “guys” bar with an assortment of whiskey, scotch and beer. Tasty hor-d’oevres and a dessert table were set out for munching and decorations were mainly silver, white and sparkly with the number 40 incorporated here and there.

Many thanks to Jaclyn Tyler for sharing these incredible photos from the party and a big happy birthday to our friend Zach! Here’s to 40 more!

{Photos by Jaclyn Tyler.}

Etta’s First Birthday

Our good friends and proprietresses, Sarah and Erin of Haute Papier, recently planned a first birthday party for Erin’s daughter inspired by our colorful red and purple Picadilly collection. We love how it turned out! The colorful patterns of our eco gift wrap were crafted into garlands, cheerful bunting, cones to hold cake pops and used to wrap gifts, of course. It’s always fun to see how people put our gift wrap to use, but this party takes the cake! Happy birthday, little Etta!

{Photos by Haute Papier.}

Party Ideas – Gift Wrap Paper Pinwheels

New England portrait and wedding photographer Brea McDonald recently planned a baby shower for her good friend, Amber. Hosted at The Blue Elephant in Saco, Maine, she pulled together a beautiful garden-inspired event using her collection of vintage table linens and a bunch of sweet DIY touches. The coolest part? The sweet DIY paper pinwheels she crafted using Smock gift wrap that she purchased at Gus & Ruby Letterpress, one of our beloved Smock dealers. We love this idea! Our gift wraps all feature colorful double-sided patterns printed on 100% post consumer recycled paper. It’s always a treat for us to see the unique ways people put our recycled wrapping paper to work, but these paper pinwheels are definitely one of our favorites!

To read more about this pretty baby shower, visit Brea’s blog.

{Photos by Brea McDonald.}

Smock Real Party – Cydney’s First Birthday Party

Today’s Smock Real Party feature is another fabulous first birthday party. And we mean truly truly fabulous! Sent to us by Debra Saba of Luxe Expressions and taken by Andrea Taylor Studio, the photos of this party have us completely inspired to find any excuse we can to throw a really exquisite celebration of our own.

Smock Real Party - Beautiful Birthday Party from Luxe Expressions and StudioWed

Working with Debra from Luxe Expressions, Smock created these beautiful letterpress invitations for Cydney’s birthday, featuring the monogram that was incorporated throughout all of the event details. The custom navy and fuchsia inks were matched to the colors of the decor and flowers, for a beautifully coordinated effect.
Smock Real Party - Beautiful Birthday Party from Luxe Expressions and StudioWed

And, of course, any daughter of an NFL player needs her own personalized jersey to serve as a guest book at her first birthday party! We love how the colors of the linens, stationery and flowers were so perfectly girly and fun, but still really sophisticated. The theme of the day was all things sugar and spice, which we completely adore.

Smock Real Party - Beautiful Birthday Party from Luxe Expressions and StudioWed
From the letterpress invitations, to the monogrammed cake, to the personalized cotton candy sticks and the luxurious satin and tulle linens, this birthday party was an incredibly thoughtful and festive celebration. Thank you so much to Debra for sharing with us!

Smock Real Party – Madline’s First Birthday

Today we are thrilled to welcome a guest to the Smock blog, Seana, who recently hosted the most incredible first birthday party for her daughter Madeline. Inspired by the Smock letterpress party invitations she sent to guests, Seana crafted a beautifully handmade, eco-friendly party that has us dreaming up any number of excuses to host great parties. Without further ado, Seana shares with us more about Madeline’s fabulous birthday celebration…
Smock real party: a vibriant first birthday party
A couple months after my daughter Madeline was born, I was perusing the web for eco-friendly paper companies who had cute birth announcements. I came across Smock and fell in love with the Horsey stationery suite. I decided right then and there they would be the invitations for my daughter’s 1st birthday party. Needless to say, I never actually sent out birth announcements (I know, bad mom!) but as Madeline’s June thirtieth birthday was approaching, I went back to Smock and bought the invites along with the matching Delft correspondence cards for thank you notes. They became my inspiration for her party! I went with an aqua and coral color scheme and started planning the decorations, cake and menu.
Smock real party: a vibriant first birthday party
It is very important to our family that we make as little impact on our environment as possible so Madeline’s party was planned with that in mind. On my home computer, I designed and printed the happy birthday banner and the party favor nametags. I bought some scrap fabrics and ribbons in coordinating colors in order to make the flag banners and “doilies”. One of my favorite projects was the picture banner. I made a fabric flag banner but left some extra space between the flags, there I used graphic clothes pins to hang home printed pictures of Madeline starting at birth and on through her first year. There won’t be a birthday party for Madeline every year but I will continue to hang the birthday banner, I’ll just change out the number.  I will also continue to hang the picture banner, switching out photos for ones from the year we are celebrating. It will become a birthday decoration tradition and it’s much better to re-use than to buy new every year.
Smock real party: a vibriant first birthday party
The cake, cookies and mini smash cake were fantastic! I went to this really great bakery right down the street from our home in Chicago, The Bleeding Heart Bakery. It is an organic bakery known for their innovative designs and the environmentally responsible way in which they operate their business. I brought in the invites and thank you cards for inspiration and they came up with a delicious carrot cake with the invitation horsey on it. They also made the bird cookies to look like the bird sweetly perched on the horsey’s back. Madeline’s mini smash cake was actually sweetened with agave nectar instead of sugar, a request I made so as to curb that sugar overload for such a small body, and they were happy to oblige.
Smock real party: a vibriant first birthday party
I will admit that if there is a way that I can get out of a lot of clean up after a party, I am all for it. One way is to use disposable utensils, plates and napkins. Unfortunately using all of that plastic is just not good for the earth so I set out to find some environmentally ways to make the party easier without compromising quality. After doing my research I found some great alternatives. We used disposable, compostable bamboo plates made by the company Bambu and we used disposable, biodegradable utensils made from potato, yes potato! Called Potatoware, these utensils were strong, in fact a lot less brittle than your regular plastic kind. I really couldn’t justify using paper napkins, so we went with cloth, but that was ok, it gave me another excuse to add some color by tying the rolled utensils with ribbon.

The simple menu consisted of:

• Green salad made from our CSA lettuce, organic cherry tomatoes, onions and artichokes all topped with a goddess dressing.

• Fruit salad made up of our CSA strawberries, in-season organic blueberries and in-season cantaloupe.

• Cheeseburgers with condiments also coming from our CSA.

It’s amazing how you can have a fairly simple meal taste SO good just by using fresh, in-season local food.

Smock real party: a vibriant first birthday party

It was not a very large party, just a few of our close friends and their kids but it was such a nice way to get together to celebrate our little girl’s first year. Madeline is the joy of our lives; she is such a happy one year old and she thoroughly enjoyed her party. We look forward to many more birthdays in the future!

Thank you, Seana, for sharing Madeline’s party celebration with us – we are so completely inspired! And, a big Happy Birthday to Madeline from all of us at Smock!

Smock Real Party – Cyd’s Bridal Shower

Our first Smock Real Party feature is particularly near and dear to my heart because the party was none other than my very own bridal shower! Hosted last month by my incredible bridesmaids, we shared an amazing day of great food, even greater friends and amazing sunshine. What more could a girl ask for? And to be perfectly honest, the lovely women in my life far surpassed any expectations I could have had and then some. It was a truly wonderful and memorable day.

Smock Real Party - Cyd's Bridal Shower

I will admit that it was a bit awkward for me to be banished from helping with shower preparations. I am very much hands on when it comes to social occasions and being on board to help with baking, cooking and logistics, but this time I wasn’t allowed to know anything aside from where and when to be. Upon arriving a few minutes before the other guests, the first thing I noticed were huge trays of cupcakes and tons of white roses. Two of my favorite things in life? Cupcakes and white roses. I knew right then and there it was going to be a great day.

Smock Real Party - Cyd's Bridal Shower

And the food! There was such a spread of food it makes me smile just thinking about all the effort that went into creating this feast. (I am told it involved color-coded spreadsheets and the aide of Google Docs to bring it all together!) Lots of fresh fruit and miniature sandwiches, bruschetta and caprese skewers, pasta salad and cheesecake, it was sincerely the best food I’ve had since the last of the holiday cookies were eaten up this winter.

Smock Real Party - Cyd's Bridal Shower

I absolutely adored the favors the girls dreamed up for all of the guests – tiny flowering plants potted in petite little terra cotta pots. During the party they served as added decor and afterward each guest had a little plant to take home to their garden. It was such a fabulous idea! Truly, no detail was forgotten. From fresh mimosas as guests arrived to little slips of paper at each seat asking each guest to impart a bit of a wisdom, it was such a special time for me to spend with the women closest to me prior to our wedding in July. Even my favorite colors, foods and flowers and my love for monograms were taken into consideration for a day that was infused with incredibly thoughtful personal details. It is certainly a day I will long remember – thank you to all of the ladies who made such an incredible day possible!

Do you have an upcoming event? A great birthday party or anniversary celebration? Email and we’d love to feature it on our Smock blog!

Smock Real Party Feature – Calling all Parties!

Here at Smock we get to work with some pretty cool people throwing some amazing parties, which we absolutely love. In fact we find it so much fun that we want to share those parties with everyone else! If you’re hosting a great brunch, baby or bridal shower, birthday party, anniversary celebration, or a fabulous spring kick-off barbecue, we want details! Email us at and tell us about your event and you could be featured on Smock’s blog. Parties of all shapes, sizes, and themes are welcome! In the meantime, check out this fabulous baby shower at the incredible Thoughtful Day, a blog we positively adore.

Liony invitation with calligraphy - by Smock

We love this use of our adorable Liony letterpress invitations featuring hand calligraphy by our favorite calligrapher, Debi Zeinert of Blooming Quill, in Whimsy for a first birthday party. It’s simple and oh so sweet, and the perfect way to set the stage for a fantastic birthday celebration.