Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Lillian's burlap and lace bridal shower!

I've been dying to show you guys the pictures and preparations for the shower, but I didn't want to leak anything to Lillian, since she reads my blog. Now I can finally show you what we've been working on for the past few weeks!

Lillian's shower was Saturday July 6 at my parents' house. We decided to get all Pinterest-y and go with a burlap and lace theme, and we served French-inspired food, notably a small army of quiches made by Frank and my mom. We made almost everything ourselves in a true "community effort," and it all turned out perfectly!

Besides making three quiches, Frank contributed a case of champagne, which we used to make more mimosas than I've ever seen before in my life.

So, the how-to of it all. Let's start with the centerpieces.

These babies are my pride and joy. I bought 15 Mason jars from Hobby Lobby for $1 each (they were on sale; you could probably find them even cheaper if you bought them in bulk online, or raided a garage sale or your grandma's cabinets). I also bought 2 spools of wide lace and a spool of twine. Angela and I spent an afternoon attaching the lace with a hot-glue gun and tying the twine around it. Then we filled them with roses from Costco.

Angela was without doubt my right-hand woman. At nine, she's the perfect age where she's old enough to do things well but young enough to LOVE helping. She's the sweetest little helper and I never, ever want her to grow up.

Anyway, here's how the tables looked all set up:

Our next-door neighbors lent us their tent and even kindly set it up for us. Our other neighbors, my mom's good friends, lent us the tables.

I bought all the burlap and half the lace from Hobby Lobby (the rest was from JoAnn Fabrics). The lady at Hobby Lobby very sweetly cut the burlap into 3- and 4-yard lengths to fit our tables.

In the check-out line at Hobby Lobby, two nice ladies behind us told us they'd been trying to figure out what our project could be, with so much lace and burlap. "We're throwing a bridal shower," I explained. "Our sister's getting married." And then Angela and I grinned at each other, because how cool is that?

^^We used our mom's porch furniture to create a little "kid's table" for the girls Angela's age. Angela was pretty thrilled to use it with her friends!

As soon as the guests started arriving, Angela asked if she could pass out hors d'oeuvres. She took her job very seriously, carrying tray after tray of the French canapes my mom had made. It was absolutely darling.

Sadly my one picture of the drinks table is all blurry... but hopefully you can see the punch bowl in the middle and the mimosas on either side. Of course, that's just a tiny fraction of the 200 or so we went through—it was a hot day, and the guests loved them!

Here's a glimpse of the dining room with trays of canapes on it. Later on, we set it up with Mum and Frank's six quiches, plus fruit salad from Lillian's mother-in-law-to-be, and a few other salads that my sisters put together (the shrimp and orzo one was a huge hit).

I wish I had a picture of the full lunch buffet, but that's the penalty of handing off your camera to someone else (Caroline... who is now losing all photographer privileges).

I used 16-ish giant pink and white pom-poms (Angela and I call them "puffballs") to decorate the chandeliers throughout the house and around the tent outside. There's a nice tutorial on how to make them here (and a million other places; just google "tissue paper pom poms") but we got ours pre-cut from Hobby Lobby. All we had to do was fluff (and fluff, and fluff... lots of fluffing. It took us a while).

Here's the dessert table, which we set up outside:

Maria made the chocolate-covered strawberries, and our awesome neighbor made the macaroons (this is the same lady who lent us the tables—she's a clutch find of a neighbor!). Mom bought the cake from the most wonderful French pastry shop in our town. It said, "Best wishes Lillian and Matt."

Here's the party in action:

Our Grandma Elsa came in from Miami for the shower. It's always such a treat to see her. We made sure to take a picture of her with the beautiful bride:

And finally, here's all six of the sisters, right before Lillian started opening presents:

Each of them did their part to pull together as a team, and the seven of us (with our mom) pulled off a wonderful shower.

And can I just say that there is no way this shower would have gone so well without Frank? Not only did he make three of the best quiches I've ever had in my life, but he set up tables and chairs, mixed mimosas and iced tea, ran errands and helped me stay calm. That man is my mainstay.

So there you have it: a mostly-homemade shower, with lots of help from neighbors, family and friends. I'm happy it turned out so beautifully, and most of all, I'm glad Lillian had a good time. Now I can hardly believe it's just over a month until her wedding. I can't wait!


  1. Oh, goodness, that is absolutely darling. :) I hope you don't mind if I steal some (well, practically all) of those ideas sometime?

    1. Please do, we'd be honored! So glad you like it!

  2. This is beautiful! I will second Grace, I have a friend who would love this and hope you don't mind if I steal some ideas!

  3. You guys throw an amazing bridal shower!

  4. Absolutely gorgeous! You two sound like amazing sisters! Lillian is very blessed.

  5. Wow, what a beautiful shower-- congratulations, and thank you for sharing the photos! What are Lillian's wedding colors? Are they the pink and white shown here? Please fill us in, I'm dying to know! :)

    1. Thanks! Her colors are actually pale blue and white; the main theme of the reception will be blue hydrangeas and white lilies. But we wanted to use roses for the shower and since blue roses are pretty hard to come by, we went with pink instead. :)

  6. Awesome! I never realized how pretty burlap and lace look together.

    And Lillian is SUPER gorgeous. Oh my.

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