This morning, I was pleased to find out that Abby Larson of the FABULOUS blog Style Me Pretty had chosen my sister’s engagement party last month to feature on her blog today. We hope you’ll check it out here.


In the meantime, here are some details (as well as a token shot of the Bride and Groom, above). To start the day, I went with my mom and sis and we had our makeup done at the Chanel counter at Nordstom (I think my sister had hers done at Bobbi Brown). I then rushed over to help Beth Helmstetter with set up at the Border Grill in Santa Monica. Well, I tried to help, but she and her crew pretty much had the whole thing in order by the time I arrived (sorry Beth! Side note: Traffic on the streets in Santa Monica on a Saturday is NOT pretty). Anyway, it was amazing how she totally converted a small dark space and made it completely Southern California chic, and all around amazing!


As a surprise to my sis, we created an adorable seating chart in the nightingale theme of her party. The chart greeted guests as they came up the stairs. As they made their way to their tables, they found them decorated with sweet succulents and were able to nosh on the chips and delicious guacamole.



Each seat had a letterpress menu to match the invitations (see below) and was labeled with a caspian blue wrap around with the guest’s name in metallic gold calligraphy ink. The calligraphy style my sister chose for all her stationery for the party was my ella font.



Instead of cake, we decided on cupcakes, which we ordered from Vanilla Bake Shop. These cupcakes were seriously awesome. I highly recommend the Key Lime cupcake and the red velvet and carrot cake cupcakes were snatched up like nobody’s business. Beth arranged them on makeshift cakeplates made from assorted terracotta pots which we picked out the Thursday before at Michael’s. It was an inexpensive, yet totally cute way which really worked with our theme. I also made cute little signs which we hung over the display to tell people which flavor was which.



We covered the tables in ivory runners from LaTavola Linens.



A genius last second idea from Beth (I think she saw something on Style Me Pretty) lead to this creative compliation of photos, both of my sister and Ryan, and our families and some childhood pics.




Lots of candles made for a romantic mood.



And we used even more candles to edge every corner of the space.



We had monogrammed napkins made for the cocktails…


Which consisted of white sangria and margaritas.




We had an hour of passed hors d’oeurves while the guests mingled and chatted. Yummy.




At the party, we were joined by Ryan’s parents, grandparents, and his aunt and uncle, who traveled from Texas to join in the celebration, as well as many of my sister and Ryan’s friends.







It was a great time enjoyed by all!


And finally, my team and I created this letterpress invitation suite just for Alyssa and Ryan. The invitations were letterpressed on pearl white paper in caspian blue and ivory inks. Instead of an RSVP card/envelope we opted for a postcard. The back of the postcard was imprinted with the invitation design in a simple pattern in ivory. On the envelopes, I used a soft metallic gold for the hand calligraphy and the letterpress return address on the back flap. Since parking is terrible in SM, I thought it best to include a simple map of the area with the parking lots conveniently labeled (as well as the Pier, and 3rd Street Promenade for our out-of-towners). We ordered custom stamps from Zazzle to post the invitations and the RSVP postcards.


And, a special thanks to Steve Steinhardt and Hannah Bergman for their amazing photography shots.