The Sweetest Baby Shower

@cydconverse's Rustic Barn Baby Shower at a Vineyard

At long last, nearly three months later, I wanted to take a moment today to share my baby shower! In my line of work, I’ve seen dozens of beautiful baby showers. With that in mind, we wanted to do something really special, but at the same time I wanted to keep things simple. We opted to have the shower at a local winery where they have the most adorable little barn perfect for parties. Because the festivities were taking place in October, we were all about playing off the season, keeping everything warm and cozy. We had friends travel from all over the eastern seaboard and even the midwest to celebrate this little lady of ours and it ended up being an incredible day with more than 50 people packed into one cute little barn! (All the more reason to keep things pretty but also simple.) My girl Alice was sweet enough to capture photos of the occasion so I have all the details to share with you!

@cydconverse's Rustic Barn Baby Shower at a Vineyard

To get the show started, the rose gold foil invitations from Minted were the perfect mix of girly and rustic to kick off the celebration. They were paired with kraft paper envelopes to keep them from feeling too formal and it was so fun for me to have friends text as they received them. (People go crazy for pretty stationery!)

@cydconverse's Rustic Barn Baby Shower at a Vineyard

@cydconverse's Rustic Barn Baby Shower at a Vineyard

@cydconverse's Rustic Barn Baby Shower at a Vineyard @cydconverse's Rustic Barn Baby Shower at a Vineyard

@cydconverse's Rustic Barn Baby Shower at a Vineyard

@cydconverse's Rustic Barn Baby Shower at a Vineyard

The ladies in my life (my mom and some of my best friends, cousins and aunts) baked up a spread of desserts like none I’ve ever seen. Seriously. We’re talking cakes, pies, cookies and cupcakes galore! My sister flew home from Florida and the morning of the shower the two of us hung out in the barn cutting flowers and tucking them into mason jars. (You know I love some easy DIY flower arrangements!)

@cydconverse's Rustic Barn Baby Shower at a Vineyard @cydconverse's Rustic Barn Baby Shower at a Vineyard

@cydconverse's Rustic Barn Baby Shower at a Vineyard

@cydconverse's Rustic Barn Baby Shower at a Vineyard

@cydconverse's Rustic Barn Baby Shower at a Vineyard @cydconverse's Rustic Barn Baby Shower at a Vineyard

@cydconverse's Rustic Barn Baby Shower at a Vineyard

We skipped shower games of all varieties but made sure to serve up some our favorite wines from the winery in the sweetest custom stemless wine glasses that everyone got to take home after the shower. Just because mommy couldn’t drink didn’t mean I didn’t want all of my best ladies to kick back and relax with a glass. The gold foil palm leaf cocktail napkins and the balloons were some of my favorite little details!

@cydconverse's Rustic Barn Baby Shower at a Vineyard @cydconverse's Rustic Barn Baby Shower at a Vineyard

@cydconverse's Rustic Barn Baby Shower at a Vineyard

@cydconverse's Rustic Barn Baby Shower at a Vineyard @cydconverse's Rustic Barn Baby Shower at a Vineyard

@cydconverse's Rustic Barn Baby Shower at a Vineyard

Inspired by this tutorial from my friend Carrie of Dream Green DIY, we set out paints and markers and invited guests to paint baby blocks with sweet little messages for the baby. The blocks are now stacked up on a shelf in the baby’s nursery, which I’ll be sharing with you soon! (But in the meantime, you can see a sneak peek!)

@cydconverse's Rustic Barn Baby Shower at a Vineyard @cydconverse's Rustic Barn Baby Shower at a Vineyard

@cydconverse's Rustic Barn Baby Shower at a Vineyard

@cydconverse's Rustic Barn Baby Shower at a Vineyard @cydconverse's Rustic Barn Baby Shower at a Vineyard

@cydconverse's Rustic Barn Baby Shower at a Vineyard

@cydconverse's Rustic Barn Baby Shower at a Vineyard @cydconverse's Rustic Barn Baby Shower at a Vineyard

@cydconverse's Rustic Barn Baby Shower at a Vineyard

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Vendors + Sources –
Photography by Alice G. Patterson | Venue: The Cape Winery | Invitations c/o Minted | Balloons, paper straws, cocktail napkins + party decor c/o Revel & Co | Custom wine glasses + metallic gold candle holders c/o Kate Aspen | Cups + plates c/o Cheeky |

[Photos by Alice G. Patterson for The Sweetest Occasion.]

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Happy New Year + What’s To Come in 2016

How to Arrange Flowers from @cydconverse

Hello, friends and a belated happy New Year to you! After unexpectedly taking an extra week off last week, I’m here. I’m in the saddle. My coffee cup is large and it is full to the brim and I am so excited to see where this year goes. While it has been quiet on the blog front so far this year, behind the scenes the wheels are already spinning. I’m pretty sure this year will be one for the record books! We have a new little baby (of course), my sister is getting married (plus I’m in two other weddings as well), I’m already lining up some amazing partnerships, and I’m most likely looking at speaking at two different conferences. And it’s only the second week of the year. Wild! Before all of that gets underway and the year starts running away from us (as they always seem to do), I wanted to take a quick moment to look back on 2015 and share a little bit about what’s to come in 2016. (I personally love reading this type of post!) We’re talking goals and plans and dreams, both personal and professional. Let’s do this!

Keep reading…

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The Top 15 Posts of 2015

If I wax poetic right now about how I can’t believe that we’re in the final hours of 2015, I’d be about the one millionth blogger to do so. Regardless, this is me officially proclaiming that I can’t believe that 2015 is just about a wrap. I’m still marveling over all the huge, crazy things that happened this year (like this one) and I’ll definitely be reflecting more on the year that was in the coming days. In the meantime, I thought I’d share a little recap of the top 15 posts of 2015! This is a semi-scientific round-up of your favorite posts of the year, presented in no particular order. Any other favorites not on the list? Fill me in! I’m brainstorming for 2016 and I’d love to know what you loved this year!

Pear and Poppy Seed Layer Cake from @cydconverse

Pear and Poppy Seed Layer Cake

DIY Marble Dipped Mugs by @cydconverse

DIY Marble Dipped Mugs

Caramel Apple Sangria by @cydconverse

Caramel Apple Sangria

DIY Gold Leaf Planters by @cydconverse

DIY Gold Leaf Planters

DIY Painted Dresser Makeover by @cydconverse featuring @valsparpaint

DIY Painted Dresser Makeover

DIY Painted Mason Jars by @cydconverse

DIY Painted Mason Jars

DIY Marble Pitcher by @cydconverse

DIY Marble Pitcher

DIY Gold Glitter Dipped Mug by @cydconverse

DIY Gold Glitter Dipped Mug

DIY Gold Leaf Frame by @cydconverse

DIY Gold Leaf Frame

DIY Striped iPhone Case by @cydconverse

DIY Striped iPhone Case

Homemade Vodka Sauce Recipe by @cydconverse

Host a Ladies Night Dinner Party

DIY Watermelon Print Napkins by @cydconverse

DIY Watermelon Print Napkins

DIY Abstract Painted Mug by @cydconverse

DIY Abstract Painted Mug

Chocolate Chip Cookie Iced Coffee Float by @cydconverse

Chocolate Chip Cookie Iced Coffee Float

DIY Painted Gold Leaf Ornaments by @cydconverse

DIY Painted Gold Leaf Ornaments

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[Top photo by Sugary & Buttery | All others by Alice G. Patterson for The Sweetest Occasion.]

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A Mini Home Tour + Tips for Choosing a Paint Color Palette

This post was sponsored by Valspar. Thank you for supporting the
sponsors that 
help make The Sweetest Occasion possible!

@cydconverse Home Tour featuring @valsparpaint

The week between Christmas and New Year’s Day is always one where I start thinking about the year ahead. I think that’s a pretty natural tendency for a lot of us following the craze of the holiday season. To start mulling over resolutions, setting goals, wanting to get organized and in general seeking a sense of renewal as a new year kicks off. As we prepared for the baby’s arrival, I was a flurry of nesting and organizing and decorating, but I definitely have a handful of projects I’ll be tackling early in the year. Today I wanted to share some of our progress around the house since moving late summer with a mini home tour. I’m also sharing three easy tips for choosing a paint color palette for your entire home! I know choosing paint colors can be a really daunting task for some people so hopefully this will give you a few ideas for making the process easier as well as give you the inside scoop on some of my current favorite paint colors! You know by now that I’ve become a total Valspar junkie so all of these rooms were painted with Valspar Optimus, available at Ace Hardware, which is hands down my favorite paint formula.

@cydconverse Home Tour featuring @valsparpaint

@cydconverse Home Tour featuring @valsparpaint @cydconverse Home Tour featuring @valsparpaint

@cydconverse Home Tour featuring @valsparpaint

@cydconverse Home Tour featuring @valsparpaint @cydconverse Home Tour featuring @valsparpaint

Choose a Neutral Base
I love using one great neutral for all of the main rooms throughout a home. Think gray, taupe, ivory or beige. As a rule, using a single shade throughout most of your public rooms allows for great flow and creates an open, airy feel versus visually chopping up your house with different colors every time you move from room to room. My favorite gray shade at the moment is Modern Gray 25-1B by Valspar, available at Ace Hardware. It’s an amazing mid-tone gray shade that doesn’t read too cool (blue or purple) or too warm (yellow or brown.) We’ve used it throughout our living room, entry, dining room and hallways, and paired with the tall ceilings and white trim it’s just stunning.

@cydconverse Home Tour featuring @valsparpaint

@cydconverse Home Tour featuring @valsparpaint @cydconverse Home Tour featuring @valsparpaint

Think Monochromatic
Once I have my neutral selected for all of the main rooms in our house, my next step is to add a bit of interest to our overall paint color palette with soft, subtle shifts in color. In our current home, our kitchen is located at the back of the house and you can see a peek of it from both the dining and living rooms. I loved the idea of changing up the color in that room, but I still wanted something light and airy to keep everything feeling really wide open so I chose Cool Mint VR079D also available at Ace Hardware. The hint of watery blue is gorgeous with the gray in the other rooms. Likewise, upstairs in the nursery (which I’ll be sharing a full, super detailed tour of soon), I went with another neutral, but this time I went a bit darker and a bit warmer with Moon Shot VR095D. It’s a really lovely warm gray that provided the perfect backdrop for all the bright colors I wanted to work into our little girl’s room while at the same time not overwhelming the tiny little room.

@cydconverse Home Tour featuring @valsparpaint

@cydconverse Home Tour featuring @valsparpaint @cydconverse Home Tour featuring @valsparpaint

@cydconverse Home Tour featuring @valsparpaint

Take a Risk
After preaching about neutrals and how they’re my favorite (I love how they allow you to work so much pattern and texture into a room without things getting too crazy), my final piece of advice is to shake things up and take a risk! Usually I like to do this in a bedroom or a tiny little bathroom or some other room where it’s completely unexpected. In this house, that place is our master bedroom where we went with Sooty Lashes VR115A from Valspar’s Color Trends 2016 palette. Hands down, this is one of my favorite paint colors of all time and I’m so glad we took the risk in going dark. I always love dark bedrooms in theory, but I tend to stick to something soft and light. (Remember our last master bedroom?) This color is dark, moody and inky, reading blue, teal or gray depending on the time of day. Our room is really large and paired with our existing white bedding and black rug along with the blonde hardwood floors, the final look is killer. When in doubt, take a risk! Chances are you’ll love it, but if you don’t it’s easy enough to switch things up and start over, which is the beauty of paint as a design tool.

@cydconverse Home Tour featuring @valsparpaint

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[Photos by Alice G. Patterson for The Sweetest Occasion.]

Dining Room – Paint color is Modern Gray 25-1B by Valspar, available at Ace Hardware | China cabinet from IKEA | Rug c/o FLOR | Table from Pier 1 Imports (10+ years ago) | Buffet is vintage | Chairs found on Craigslist | Curtains from IKEA | Large yellow art print c/o Minted | Pineapple print by Ez Pudewa | DIY gold leaf frame

Kitchen – Paint color is Cool Mint VR079D by Valspar, available at Ace Hardware | Kitchen measurements art print by Whimsy & Spice

Nursery – Paint color is Moon Shot VR095D by Valspar, available at Ace Hardware | Crib from IKEA | Crib skirt + blanket c/o Land of Nod | ‘E’ pillow c/o Land of Nod | Rug c/o RugsUSA | Crib sheet + wooden toy crate from Target | Pouf from Amazon

Master Bedroom – Paint color is Sooty Lashes VR115A by Valspar, available at Ace Hardware | Bedding by West Elm | Jewelry stand from Target | Art print by Paul Lee | Throw pillows + basket from Target | Rug from RugsUSA | Lamps from Christmas Tree Shops | Nightstands from this IKEA Rast hack tutorial

This post was sponsored by Valspar. Read more about our editorial policies

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DIY Mini Rosemary Wreath Garland

DIY Mini Rosemary Wreath Garland by @cydconverse

If you’re still looking for a few pretty ideas for decking the halls, I have one last holiday DIY idea to share with you today! And in the spirit of all things last minute, we’re keeping this one appropriately simple. It’s the sweetest little rosemary wreath garland made with tiny little embroidery hoops and it’s seriously adorable to boot. You could also nix the garland and use these little wreaths as ornaments, too! So so pretty, don’t you think?

DIY Mini Rosemary Wreath Garland by @cydconverse

DIY Entertaining by The Sweetest Occasion DIY Entertaining by The Sweetest Occasion

DIY Mini Rosemary Wreath Garland by @cydconverse

supplies

  • Mini embroidery hoops
  • Twine, string or ribbon
  • Fresh rosemary
  • Scissors and/or floral snips
  • Floral wire

DIY Mini Rosemary Wreath Garland by @cydconverse DIY Mini Rosemary Wreath Garland by @cydconverse

DIY Mini Rosemary Wreath Garland by @cydconverse

DIY Mini Rosemary Wreath Garland by @cydconverse DIY Mini Rosemary Wreath Garland by @cydconverse

DIY Mini Rosemary Wreath Garland by @cydconverse

DIY Mini Rosemary Wreath Garland by @cydconverse

Begin by separating the two pieces of your embroidery hoops. For our purposes we will only need to smaller, inner hoop without the clamps. Then cut several lengths of floral wire about 3″ in length to have ready as you work. For each wreath you’ll want approximately 5 or 6 sprigs of fresh rosemary. Begin with the first sprig, twisting a piece of floral wire tightly around the stem to secure it to your embroidery hoop. Gently bend the rosemary around the hoop, securing it with floral wire every inch or two as you work. When it comes time to add the second piece of rosemary, be sure the stem is tucked underneath the first piece so it overlaps to give it the most wreath-like look. Continue working in this fashion until the hoop is covered, then snip off the excess ends of floral wire.

DIY Mini Rosemary Wreath Garland by @cydconverse

DIY Mini Rosemary Wreath Garland by @cydconverse

DIY Mini Rosemary Wreath Garland by @cydconverse DIY Mini Rosemary Wreath Garland by @cydconverse

DIY Mini Rosemary Wreath Garland by @cydconverse

At this point you could add a simple loop of twine or ribbon and you’ll have some really cute ornaments! Or you can take it one step further and make a cute little garland like mine. To do so I cut a long length of red twine about six feet long, then folded it in half to find the middle. Thread the twine through your first wreath so that it rests right at the middle point of your garland, looping and knotting the twine to hold the wreath in place. Then work outward in either direction, spacing the wreaths evenly as you go.

DIY Mini Rosemary Wreath Garland by @cydconverse DIY Mini Rosemary Wreath Garland by @cydconverse

DIY Mini Rosemary Wreath Garland by @cydconverse

And there you have it, friends! One very festive little Christmas garland that’s really a cinch to make. Also, if you haven’t noticed, I’m kind of a junkie when it comes to Christmas DIY ideas. You can check out all of my holiday DIY tutorials and follow along over on Instagram with the hashtag #thesweetestholidays!

DIY Mini Rosemary Wreath Garland by @cydconverse

DIY Mini Rosemary Wreath Garland by @cydconverse

DIY Mini Rosemary Wreath Garland by @cydconverse

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[Art direction + styling by Cyd Converse | Photos by Alice G. Patterson for The Sweetest Occasion.]

The fine print: Please link with love! As with all of our posts, DIY projects featured on The Sweetest Occasion may not be copied, distributed or reproduced without express written permission. Love and links are always appreciated! If you’d like to share a maximum of 1 – 2 images from this post, please link to this post directly for the DIY tutorial and do not include the instructions in your own post. Thanks so much! xoxo

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