Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Shitty-Chic Birthday Cocktail Party Wrap Up

ZOMG where did the last week go?  Travel delays, flight cancellations, and an all around helluva week lead to meager posting opportunities.  Ok, so back the the birthday party.  It was a smashing success!  I'd say for the first hour and a half it was the classy cocktail party I had planned.  Then, of course, the gays took over once a few boozy beverages were had and turned it into a dance party/photo shoot/raucous gathering, but you just have to expect that when the party isn't at your place. 

Ok, here is the rundown on what was spent, what was brought, and the multitude of lessons I learned.

- I love iomoi.com's e-stationary for invites, thank you's, and holiday cards.  A one-year subscription is $20, and I have definitely gotten my money's worth.

- Glass vases for flowers and candles.  This way I could stop by the wholesale flower district and make my own arrangements.  Mucho money saver.
- Gray bedsheet and fabrics I brought back from Bali a few years back for a perfect table cloth
- Cools bowls and trays for garnishes and such.  Maybe I would forgo these in the future, but they did look nice.

Bed Bath & Beyond
- Large ice bucket/tub for chilling vino and vodka - $5
- Tealight caneles (pack of 100--I think I used 20 max) - $6
- Candle lighter - $3.50

28th Street Flower District
- 12 medium monstera leaves from Caribbean Cuts (looks modern and cool and much heartier than flowers in hot temps) - $14
- Three large tropical flowers from Fischer & Page (I went for the bucket with three flowers and picked the two best ones, the guy threw in the third not so great one for free.) - $10
- Note: Bring cash!

 - Big splurge of the party.  I found napkins at this charming store on University and had to have them.  $18 for two packs of 20.  Great thing is that I still have 10 or so left to enjoy at my apt.

Fresh Direct saved my life....espeically since the party wasn't at my place AND I had saved a 25% off coupon I got in the mail.  Score!  I could also get the vino delivered through Fresh Direct and their partnership with Union Square Wines which saved my ass.  I enlisted all friends who asked what they could bring to schlep a vodka.....hey, they asked!  :-)

Lessons Learned:
#1 - The party will become it's own beast.  As long as people are having fun just go with it.
#2 - People whom you didn't invite and don't know will show up.  Friends invite friends and expect the creepy neighbor from upstairs to make an appearance.  As long as they don't arrive empty handed,you have made some new friends.
#3 - Midway through the evening head to the drinks table to do a quick clean up and organize.  This way you know what booze and mixers are left and you don't end up with five open bottles of club soda.
#4 - Buy about 3/4 of the booze you think you will need.  Respectable guests will bring vino, and you can enlist your besties to get the hard liquor.  I walked away with three bottles of white and six bottles of red unopened which will become 'bring bottles' for parties this summer.
#5 - Take pictures.  If you are not the best photog get one of your friends to do a once around with the guests.  Get the pics of Facebook so everyone can remember what a great time they had and how amazing you are.  Just kidding!

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