Planning a party is always a little stressful. No matter what the occasion, getting all of the details just right and pulling off an impressive soirée can be a lot of pressure on a gal. I recently was honored to host the baby sprinkle of my dearest friend, Erica, in anticipation of the arrival of her first baby girl (aww).
She wanted something informal and without all of the traditional shower fanfare, hence a sprinkle versus a full-out shower… but let’s just be honest, that didn’t mean it could be even an ounce less fabulous. I had so many baby shower ideas, but there are many moving parts to party planning and how do you know where to best focus your energy to help it come together flawlessly? Well, there are 4 must-have details in hitting a shower or sprinkle out of the park. Let’s discuss.
LOCATION. LOCATION. LOCATION.
The party locale sets the stage for the vibe and feel of your party. Selecting a venue that reflects a theme or feel that you’re going for is key. It’s much harder to transform a plain ‘ol party room into a darling, pastel shower oasis than it is to add light décor to an already beautiful space. I chose Cafe Spiaggia as our venue – total no brainer – because it’s not only a stunning and classic Chicago favorite, but dripping in marble, gold and white. Can you picture a better backdrop? Choosing a great space will make your baby shower ideas easily come to life.
Ok, now that you’ve found a perfectly pinterest-worthy place to have your party, you must DECORATE it! I worked directly with the incredible event planning team at Cafe Spiaggia to make my best baby shower ideas come to life. It was actually pretty amazing, they were able to hunt down some of my must-have décor items like geronimo balloons and peonies in every shade of pink imaginable. Talk about some killer event skills!
You don’t have to hire a team to plan something perfect, however. It’s as easy as starting a Pinterest board and collecting your ideas there. Once you’ve got a theme and “look” going that you’re drawn to, you can find pretty much everything you need to bring it to life on wonderful sites like Etsy, Beau-Coup and Minted. My advice: stick with a simple color palette and don’t over-fuss your space. Less is more… a few focal points of interest and tons of stunning flowers go a long, long way.
Creating a few signature cocktails – and something non-alcoholic for the mama-to-be, of course – is a great way to streamline your bar selections and add something fun that can be circulated amongst the guests and avoiding a major pile up at the bar. It’s always better to keep guests mingling and talking instead of fighting for refreshment.
Sparkling and citrus based cocktails are the perfect answer for a sprinkle or shower. Something a little effervescent and light with a hint of juice, because day-drinking should be easy and fun, not overly intoxicating. I love the idea of fresh peach Bellinis, grapefruit wine spritzers, champagne with Lillet, and, of course, rosé.
Spring and sparkling water are essential to have on hand, too.
You didn’t think I’d skip the most important part, did you? Nah. I was just saving the best for last. Creating a stellar, foodie-focused menu was the easiest part of planning this sprinkle. We were at Cafe Spiaggia, after all. Known for his highly acclaimed rustic Italian cooking, Executive Chef Tony Mantuano mastered our food offerings and provided a selection of charcuterie, cheeses, salads, pastas and proteins to ensure that everyone was satiated and beyond dazzled.
But what if you don’t have a Tony Mantuano? Here’s what you do! Keeping in mind that food is always the most memorable component of any good party, you make sure you are thinking of food that looks and feels special. Think: a beautiful, abundant cheese plate, an assortment of finger sandwiches or family-style salads and pastas. Also, a cold bar with shellfish or a DIY dessert bar can be a lot of fun, too. Just don’t skimp on the food, it really is everyone’s favorite part.
What a beautiful party it was! Keeping my 4 must-haves in mind made party planning so very simple and kept me from going overboard (which I’m pretty good at doing). A shower or sprinkle is really all about the mama-to-be and celebrating her, so keep things in-line with your guest of honor’s tastes and when in doubt, flowers and MORE flowers, everywhere.