Wordless Wednesday: 8 Party and Event Planning Tips & Tricks From the Pros

As a party, event, and wedding planning pro, Sarah Sofia Productions is dishing out party planning tips and tricks that will make your party stand out and run smoothly.

Party Planning Tips and Tricks || Sarah Sofia Productions

1. Determine your budget and get organized with a party planning check list. These two items will be the most important element to keeping you on track and looking like a pro.

Sip and See / Housewarming || Sarah Sofia Productions

2. Choose a color scheme and or theme. Whether your throwing a cocktail party, holiday party or kids birthday party the colors and theme set the tone of the party, like the colors of the Sip and See/Housewarming party.

3. Food selection and preparation. Determine if you will be hiring a caterer or making the food yourself. The menu selection will be determined by the type of party your throwing i.e. brunch, wine party, dinner party and the date i.e. time of year.  Scallops are a perfect appetizer to serve for spring and summer parties. See Surprise 50th Birthday Party for details.

Party Planning Tips and Tricks  Sarah Sofia Prodcutions

 

Who doesn’t love Pinterest? However, it’s easy to get overwhelmed with all the delicious and beautiful recipes. Plan on making a few items well and buying the rest. Food bars are a hot trend, so why not take the work off your plate and set up a bake potato bar or taco bar for your guests.

Wine Tasting || Sarah Sofia Productions

4. Use fun and special occasion serving pieces. There’s no better time to use all those 3 tier food platters, china, or fun serving dishes you received as wedding gifts! Varying the height and size of your food display is one of the tricks the pros use to make the food table look beautiful, like in the photo below from a Summer Cocktail Party. Don’t have a punch bowl, cupcake stand or enough place settings? Ask a friend if you could borrow it for your party or rent them for your local party rental company.

Summer Cocktail Party || Sarah Sofia Productions

5. Décor and flower arrangements. Once you’ve decided on your color scheme and or theme, it should be woven into your party through the invitations, table linens, food, serving dishes, flower arrangements and decorations.

Party Planning Tips and Tricks || Sarah Sofia Productions

Pictured above are some of our favorite flower arrangements from Tying the Knot Bridal Shower, Easter Celebrations, Valentine’s Day Sneak Peek, and Summer Wine Tasting! Flowers don’t have to be expensive or look like you just bought them at your local grocery store. Shop farmers markets or Trader Joe’s.  Arrange flowers in various heights and colors, use fruit as your vase, and use festive elements like candy.

Queen City Gala || Sarah Sofia Productions

Don’t have tons of money for flower arrangements or decorations? Use fruit in glass containers and home décor items such as candles and lanterns to set the mood.

6. Signature Drink. No matter what party your hosting, make it stand out with a specialty drink like the Moscow Mule pictured above from the Queen City Gala: Black Tie For Charity.

7. Entertainment. Don’t have a budget for a DJ or band, then make a party mix on your IPod or download your favorite party mix on your.

8. Be a guest at your own party. As a host of any party or event your busy greeting guests and making sure things run smoothly. However, make sure you take the time to enjoy it all. If you don’t have the time to get all the party planning tasks complete or don’t want to the extra stress, hire a party or an event planner and be a guest at your own party!

Credits

Style and design – Sarah Sofia Productions

Photography – Sarah Sofia Productions

Floral Arrangements – Sarah Sofia Productions

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Welcome to The First Wordless Wednesday of February!!! I dont know where the time goes, it was just Christmas!!! So now I would like to introduce you to the Ladies of February and your hosts for the month where your Links will be seen on 18 Blogs, Yes thats right!!! Wow we have been growing and spreading the word!!! The more the merrier!!!

Happy Valentines❣ ❣ ❣

The February Oh My Heartsie Girls Wordless Wednesday
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Wordless Wednesday Karren Frieday Feature on Oh My Heartsie Girl
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Carol Runnung Granny Green
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Carol Is Featuring Her Favorite Sugar Cookie Recipe the key is to roll the dough thick, these melt in your mouth and have a great icing recipe. You can find Carols Sugar Cookie Recipe and Icing along with other recipes on Running Granny Green
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Coco DIY Soothing Muscles Salve!
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With exercise comes sore muscles and I have a perfect solution or I should say sore muscle salve and the best part is it is DIY Find my recipe DIY Soothing Muscles Salve!
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Pam Still Dating My Spouse
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Lysa
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Christie Sparkels of Sunshine
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Jenny Renovar Design
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On Transformation Tuesday post! I took a garage sale find from dated country hearts to a more sophisticated two-tone coastal cottage shelf. See the changes I made to update this look of a shelf with country hearts Transformation Tuesday – DIY Country Heart Shelf
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Sarah Sofia Productions
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Sarah share her Heart Shaped Shortbread Cookies recipe, just in time for Valentines, make up a batch now for your family, or as a gift for friends
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Nicki Sweet parrish place
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Nicki shares a beautiful mantel in her home, but theres more, new additions to the fireplace and new accessories as well. You need to see the post to appreciate the whole room, check out Winter Mantel {Living Room}
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Cathy Peek into my paradise
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Valentines is around the corner ad Cathy shares a Roundup of Valentine ideas from candy, cakes, cookies, treat bags, fun printables, and the list goes on, check them all out at A Peek Into My Paradise Valentine Roundup
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Lisa's Teacher's Classroom
The Book With No Pictures by B.J. Novak
Such a fun read! I can see kids of all ages appreciating it but little ones will really get a kick out of this! So the premise is that whoever is reading this book aloud has to follow the rules and read everything. It doesn’t matter what it says, the rule is the adult must say everything.The Book Without Pictures
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When I was growing up sometimes Mum would put a note in my lunch box with a little picture. I loved it. It’s like getting a big hug from your Mum when you are at school. I have made some really cute lunch box notes to print out and put in your kids lunch boxes for when they go back to school. Find printable Lunch Box Notes
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Andie Conn
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Thanksgiving Inspiration: Get The Look For Less

Fall Entertaining 2011

Now that Halloween is over and we’re entering the second week of November I wanted to share some more fall and Thanksgiving inspiration with you.

Fall Entertaining 1 2011

Glamming up your pumpkins, gourds, and eggplants not only add color but dimension to your Thanksgiving décor. For the easy DIY tutorial check out here.

Fall Entertaining 2012

You’re Thanksgiving tablescape doesn’t have to be fancy or traditional to be festive and colorful! Adding décor pieces that you already own and mix and matching them with one or two new pieces work great. Get the details for this look here.

Festive Fall Decor Tablescape

Here’s another simple Thanksgiving tablescape that I shared with you to kick off fall! I love the pop of orange, yellow, and red against the blue and burlap. You can check out the details of this look here.

Don’t forget the front of your home is the first thing that will greet your guests.

p 1 Fall Decor

Get the look and details from my previous post here.

Pottery Barn is always a source of inspiration for me during the holidays. Get the look for less and in 15 minutes.

Thanksgiving Decor

First step is to use accessories you already own! Everything you see here is something I’ve pulled from different areas of our home.

Thanksgiving Decor & Tablescape

I absolutely love these black lanterns from Ikea! I usually have them displayed outside but brought the outside in for a rustic look. The faux sparkle pumpkin is one of my favorite buys from Michael’s, but you can easily do it yourself. This gold sea urchin was pulled from our master bedroom. Don’t have colorful table linens? Make your own. I bought this fabric from Hobby Lobby for an event and have used it several times since then.

Thanksgiving Decor & Tablescape

I’ve wanted to try pumpkin carved votive for a few years now and love how it turned out. All you need is a small pumpkin, knife, spoon, candle, and electric drill.

Thanksgiving Tabelscape

I was easy and took less than 10 minutes. Simply slice off the tops, carve a small hole, and scoop out the flesh & seeds of the pumpkin.

Thanksgiving Decor & Tablescape

I decided to use pumpkins again this year as place settings. Simply write the name on the pumpkin with chalk paint or permanent maker.

Thanksgiving Decor & Tablescape

You can easily turn this pumpkin into a DIY decorating craft for kids to keep them occupied during dinner. Simply add fun stickers to the table.

Did you catch Mama’s Cranberry and Apple Dish, that will WOW your guests?

Mamas Cranberry and Apple Dish

If not check out the recipe and more Thanksgiving décor inspiration here.

Thanksgiving Inspiration and Recipes

We’re also teaming up with wedding and event pros this holiday season! Make sure you check out all the dessert inspiration, dessert table, and mini pumpkin pie recipe here just in time for Thanksgiving!

Holiday Dessert Bar

Mini Pumpin Pies Home is where the boat is

Credits

Design and Styling – Sarah Sofia Productions

Photography – Sarah Sofia Productions

Black Lanterns – Ikea

China and silverware – Villeroy & Boch

Orange chevron table runner – Hobby Lobby

Gold sea urchins – Target

Gold pumpkins – Michael’s Craft Store

 

Queen City Gala: Black Tie For Charity Event

The Queen City GalaThe Queen City Gala, a first annual black tie fundraiser benefiting Men’s Shelter of Charlotte, Lydia’s Legacy and Samaritan’s Feet was the premier event of the fall in Uptown Charlotte!

The Queen City Gala

The gala was held at the Levine Museum of the New South and featured a shrimp and grits station, Moscow Mule signature drink, and the talented band U-Phonik that got the crowd dancing!

Queen City Gala

The night was full of heart felt sentiment as the hosts explained why the three charities were so personal to them.  Followed by representatives of each charity, who spoke with such passion and moved everyone in the audience.

Queen City Gala

The color scheme was vibrate and represented the colors of the three charities.  We used melon linens for the cocktail tables and teal blue for the seating tables.  Pop of orange, coral, green, pink, and purple provided a great contrast to the table linens.

Queen City Gala

Queen City Gala

Since several of the hosts were involved in their charities in memory of a loved ones, I was especially honored and touched to be a part of this event.

Queen City Gala

Additionally, it was our relationship through the Junior League of Charlotte, which has a rich history of service, that brought us together. All four hosts, the founder of Lydia’s Legacy, Carin Ross Johnson, and myself are all members of the Junior League of Charlotte.

Queen City Gala

Besides the shrimp and grits and the Moscow Mule, the other fun element was the black tie formal attire requested dress code.  Watching people walk in and dance in formal dresses added a festive atmosphere to the night!

Queen City Gala

Queen City Gala

Queen City Gala

Everyone that attended the event went away knowing a little more about these three well established charities in Charlotte and not wanting the night to end after getting down on the dance floor.

Queen City Gala

To learn more about the Queen City Gala, the charities, and hosts please like Queen City Gala on Facebook.

Vendor Credit

Event Design and Styling – Sarah Sofia Productions

Floral Arrangements and Photography – Sarah Sofia Productions

Venue – The Levine Museum of the New South

Caterer – Best Impressions Caterers

Band – U-Phonik

Linens – Classic Party Rentals

Charities – Men’s Shelter of Charlotte, Lydia’s Legacy, and Samaritan’s Feet