kids’ parties

up, up and away

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greetings!  hope everyone had a wonderful 4th of july!  i’m here today with an adorable party one of my clients threw for her baby boy last month.  she had the idea of the big, silver balloons spelling out his monogram at the party, and i thought…what about a balloon *with* his monogram for the invitation?  i thought the add of light blue gingham was perfect for summer and sweet for a little guy turning 1.

balloon boy gingham invitationi think the little curly string is my favorite part!balloon monogram invitation

blue balloon wordingin the etsy shop here.  i also just added a red version, too!  can easily change the colors to pink or something girly too.

i also made foldover food signs, a beverage sign that was framed and a graphic used for custom napkins.  love how it all came together!  and don’t miss the floral arrangements – gorgeous!!IMG_3084





IMG_3235it does float by in the blink of an eye, doesn’t it?  {sniff}  happy 1st birthday bennett!!


some bunny’s turning 1

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seeing as how easter is this weekend and bunnies are on the brain, i thought i would share a sweet custom invitation i did for a client in charlotte earlier this year.  her sweet girl turned 1 and she threw a pastel rabbit-themed soiree for her little gal.  so precious.

i am IN LOVE with this new wildflower liner pattern that is brand new for 2014.  so many fun colors to use!

spring first birthday invitation


available for purchase here.bunny 1st birthday partybunnies are so sweet for little girls.  rinne is on her 3rd “bunny” after unfortunate losses of “pink bunny” and “white bunny” so we love them here too.

some bunny's birthdayand look at what a cute spring party it was!




image2i mean, if she isn’t the cutest thing.  happy 1st birthday everett!!!

happy easter y’all!





welcome to banks’ farm

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my friend shannon is a lot of things…she is my beautiful, always fashionable friend (you may recall when we both were the same amount overdressed at an indigo girls concert; her in gold lame pants and i in my fur coat), a tireless charity volunteer, the perfect hostess (ask her to make you a vodka tonic if you’re feeling brave), and the brains behind charmed jewelry.  last october, she got to add a title none of us can anticipate: a NICU mom.  her little boy banks was born with intestinal issues which required surgery after surgery and a 4 month stay in the NICU.  thankfully, banks came out on top and is now a healthy and happy ONE year old!  yea!!  clearly a big celebration was in order after a challenging but blessed year for their family.

starting with a farm theme, i whipped up an invite

farm invite

farm top

…and shannon took it from there.  let’s not forget this is the same girl who just makes pom pom fringe awnings APPEAR in her house.  behold.





IMG_9130this party was one of the best 1st birthday parties i have ever attended – so many things for the older kids to do!  between the bouncehouse, petting zoo, pony rides, arts & craft tables and snack food, my two were in heaven.  although rush took a liking to a ride-on jeep and promptly put it in turbo speed (who knew those things have a speed faster than “crawl?”) and nearly took out a cochin chicken, but that’s neither here nor there…


rinne loved the bunny.




i think he enjoyed his first taste of sugar!



IMG_9309happy 1st birthday sweet banks!  we love you and are so proud of you!!


p.s. some photos courtesy of the talented kerie cleveland photography!

a musical birthday party

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it’s friday y’all!  that is cause for some celebration…how about some a little music party action?!

my friend amy found a darling dress for her daughter in the colors of navy, red, turquoise and white…so we kicked things off with an invitation in those colors.

music birthday party invitationthe party was in her backyard, and was so darling!  she had a local music man come and lead the kids in a sweet chorus of dance and song.

IMG_5183 smallerthe party was held on a beautiful summer day.  the adults helped themselves to some cold treats during and after the music…

IMG_5167 smallerafterwards, we all enjoyed a delicious bbq meal and cupcakes, which were courtesy of sweet peeps.

IMG_5241 smaller

IMG_5242 smallerwe loved celebrating this precious birthday girl!

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IMG_5166 smallerhappy birthday ella perry!

and, i am so remiss in blogging, this party was over a year ago…so stay tuned for the same sweet girl’s 3rd birthday party which was just as cute! :)

have a great weekend!!!


anchors away

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the jig is up.

my well-thought out plan of small, minuscule, basically non-existent parties for rush’s birthday went as far as it could go.  somewhere between 3 and 4 he realized, hey – we’re always going to other peoples’ birthday parties doing something fun…and giving them cool presents…and eating a bunch of cake!  what the HECK?!  so off to the bouncehouse we went for my little man’s 4th birthday party.  my intention with this soiree was to make it SO NOT a big deal.  i planned it for a weekday (don’t want to impede any weekend plans!  no big deal if you can’t make it!) from 4:00 – 6:00 (i am always looking for something to do with the kids between those hours and thought maybe another harried mom would find solace in an activity then too – and have the kids’ dinner taken care of!).  we held it at the sort of ghetto bouncy place around the corner from our house and i bought a ‘package’ full of drinks, tickets and plasticware.  we invited his preschool class and a handful of other kids we see regularly with playdates – i.e., HIS friends.  (this is going to be tough for me because i naturally want to invite all of my friends.)

so this is the plan going in – simple.  ultra simple.  and then i found vintage lighthouse stamps on etsy.  rush LOVES lighthouses.

lighthouse stamps

from then, it was decided.  classic red and navy nautical, with emphasis on lighthouses.  so naturally, an invitation in similar fashion had to follow…


lighthouse invitation

in the etsy shop here.

and we had to have summer floral arrangements, in silver bowls.  i mean how many times do you turn four anyway?


this was actually the simplest floral arrangement ever – hydrangeas from the yard stuck into green floral foam, in two sort of matching silver bowls that i purchased for $5 each at my church’s flea market.  

i found this wooden lighthouse in an antique shop in florida last summer, and it was the perfect centerpiece.  it usually sits in rush’s room.

lighthousefood was easy – annie’s cheddar bunnies, chick-fil-a nuggets and a little fruit kabob.  the skewers, plates and napkins all came from target!

IMG_3459the cake…i LOVE my cake girl.  katie from sweet peeps always does a bang up job!  i sent her the invitation and she created this coordinating beaut.



loved the little sailor’s knot detail.

lighthouse cakei wasn’t going to do favors, but then i found the most adorable red striped bags…

favor 1

inside there were fish stickers, a whale lollipop and some little sea creatures that grow when you put them in water.


i think the birthday boy was a teensy bit excited about his party.

excited muchhis sister was stoked about jumping…


his little friends are all so sweet.


all FOUR (sniff) candles were blown out handily…

blowing out the candles


and just like that, another year ticks by.  i’ve been seeing all of the photos on facebook of back to school cuteness, but really getting hit hard by the kids going off to college.  those kids were little just yesterday, it can’t be time for that yet!  it’s unbelievable how fast this parenting thing goes.  this article made me ugly cry last night just thinking about what’s to come.  our house may be a complete disaster with toys and books strewn every whichway 90% (ok ok, 100%) of the time but i know i’ll miss the mess and noise when it’s gone.

but sometime between now and when rush heads off to college, we have GOT to figure out how to take a decent family photo.

burnette famone of these days…



minted design competition

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soooooo i had kind of an interesting night last night. i was in my office working while rbb watched the masters that he had DVR’d while he was studying yesterday (CFA level II – it’s a bitch.  you know it must be bad if my golf-loving husband is not watching the final day of the masters live).  p.s. i assume y’all know what minted is?  i’m sure you got a christmas card or two from someone with their logo on the back.  it’s an online invitation/card company full of boutique designs from people who have similar shops to mine – so while it’s a big company, it’s not THE MAN as others i can think of (tiny prints – i’m looking at YOU).  they are good stuff.  the quality is top notch and they have lots of cool options, like die-cutting, that you can do.  it’s a neat community of designers, and i wouldn’t mind sharing a few calliespondence designs with them!


here’s how it all went down.

10:30 p.m. – (thinking) i wonder how people sell their designs on minted.  that would be fun.  i guess they submit them somehow.  oh yeah, i probably need to do that for holiday cards.  already?  can it be?

10:34 p.m. – check out minted’s holiday card submission policy…where is it…i think i missed it…oh, well here’s something.  what is this?  a design competition on children’s birthday party invitations.  hmm.  i have a few of those.

10:40 p.m. – (read through requirements and look at templates)  ok, maybe i’ll do this.  when is the deadline.  APRIL 15th AT 10AM!?  that’s tomorrow morning!  crap.

10:41 p.m. – 12:01 a.m. – prepare a slew of invitations to be the proper size format.  tweak.  tweak some more.  tweak just a hair again.  and then when you think they can’t be tweaked anymore….tweak.

12:02 a.m. – 12:42 a.m. – submit a bevy of children’s party invitations online, which includes things like proper font names, a wordy description of the invitation and a quippy name for the design.  oooookay.

12:43 a.m. – DONE!  YESSSSS.

12:44 a.m. – guess i should check out my competition.  let’s see here.  omg.  omg.  omg, these are all AMAZING.  WHY DID I EVEN ENTER?!  what a waste of time.  crap, there’s another really good one.  and another.

so CLEARLY i am new to all of this and my hopes are not all that high, but i’ve been getting some notifications from people that “like” my designs – i think that’s how you vote.  if you are so inclined (no worries if it’s not your thing or you don’t have time – we’re still friends), you can see all of the calliespondence designs HERE.  it should look somewhat similar to this…  (and don’t worry if one of your invitations is featured – all of the email addresses and street addresses were changed!)

Screen Shot 2013-04-15 at 1.48.40 PM

i’ll keep you posted if you’ll be able to purchase a calliespondence for minted invitation anytime soon :)  and thanks for voting, if you get a chance to scoot by there!


up up and away

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i just love a 1st birthday party.  babies are so sweet at that age, and it’s such fun to see what they do with their first taste of cake.  plus, it’s a children’s birthday party where you can actually catch up with your friends, which doesn’t so much happen once they get bigger and the parties transition to being all about the children instead of the adults (what the hey!?).  this was not my friend shannon’s first visit at the rodeo, who at the time of this 1st birthday party, also had a 2 year old and a 3 year old!!  shannon seems to have an inexhaustible party brain – all of her children’s soirees are done to a T and so original – and super fun too!

she went with a balloon theme and used a palette of light blue, navy blue and grey…

1st birthday invitation - balloon

in the etsy shop here.

balloon party invitationthe party was nothing short of perfection.  shannon always, always blows my expectations out of the water. oh, did i not mention in addition to her three kids in three years thing she’s got goin’ on, she’s also a big deal in the local mortgage world?  yeeeeah. and why do i have trouble making it to the grocery store again?

birthday monogram wreath

photo-184 copy 2

balloon party food table 1
balloon party food - donuts


photo-184 copy 5
photo-184 copy 6

photo-184 copy 8

here are carlton, sweet birthday boy knox and shannon!  love this family.


omg. so cute.

birthday boy

i think all of the partygoers enjoyed themselves (and there i am in the magenta gingham shirt, with my back wisely to the camera as i clearly did not wash my hair this day due to the evident bun situation).

partygoers chowing down

….rinne especially had a great time, you can see, as the last child standing at the food table.  girlfriend likes her grub.

photo-184 copyfavors were balloon shaped cookies – and a real balloon!

photo-184 copy 3it was a fantastic celebration for a sweet little guy.  happy birthday KNOX!



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frogs, snails and puppy dog tails is a little inaccurate to me.  from what i’ve seen with my own little boy, it’s cars, trucks, dinosaurs, tools, cars, airplanes, soccer balls, trains and more cars.  and maybe plain ol’ dirt, if you’re allowed to add a substance.  my friend and client andrea has two adorable boys, so she is well-versed on all prior mentioned subjects – and especially dinosaurs.  she threw her 3-year-old son a darling dinosaur themed party, as darling as one of those can be! she held it at a local NYC kid gym (no cleaning up: bonus!) and borrowed her party hues from their decor…

little boy dinosaur party invitation


dinosaur birthday party invite

new in the etsy shop here













sweet birthday boy.  happy 3rd birthday connor!!  rawr.


wild things

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the etsy shop is a funny thing.  i end up working with really cool people all over the country (and even world – i shipped out an invitation order to australia yesterday!  so crazy.) but wouldn’t even know them if they were to walk right past me.  that is what is so wild to me about the internets.  they connect people in an amazing way, but at the same time remain so damn anonymous.  a new anonymous etsy friend in boston asked me to do the “jungle” birthday party invitation for her daughter violet’s birthday party – wait, don’t get excited – this is NOT ben affleck and jennifer garner’s child.  although with the boston and violet thing i can see why your mind went there.  and they are not anonymous anyway, i would totally know them if they walked right in front of me.  and then i would squeal.  after i fainted because they wanted me to design violet’s birthday party invitation.


this fete was held at the franklin park zoo in boston, and the photographer, bella wang, was sweet enough to email me the downright fabulous photos she took.  wow – she’s good, and the party looks like it was a great time!





the elephant on the cake looks so much like my little guy on the invitation…i am dying!


we also whipped up stickers for the lunch boxes…




…and coordinating labels for the favor boxes as well.  animal crackers, of course!




how adorable are these little party animals!



little wild things, so precious are they.  happy 2nd birthday violet!


time for tea and crumpets

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not gonna lie…i might be sort of really excited for rinne to start playing dress-up.  what fun will that be!  i mean, until she refuses to wear anything but her ariel mermaid costume to publix.  number one on all little girls’ lists of dress-up characters always seems to be a princess.  i can see why; the jewels, carriages, gowns, footwear, a dashing prince – not a bad gig.  i absolutely adored the idea of a joint fifth birthday party where high tea was served, and all guests wore princess dresses.

princess birthday party 1

of course every princess needs a tiara (preferably diamond encrusted).

tiara princess birthday party


invitation available in the etsy shop here.

and look at this crop of royalty.  HOW precious are they!



i bet all of those little pinkies were held out, too.

happy 5th birthday elizabeth and margaret!