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Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Think Pink!

We're thinking pink today at Amy Atlas Events. We're working on a special project that has a lot of pink in it, including these fabulous white chocolate (tinted pink, of course!) cupcake holders. It couldn't be a better time to be thinking pink. Tomorrow marks the first day of October, which is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Since pink is the color used to express support for people who are diagnosed with Breast Cancer, we hope everyone will be thinking pink.

I'll provide diy tips for these edible pink cupcake holders after I post the whole dessert table next week so stay tuned!

In the meantime, I am off to start getting ready for Mindy Weiss' Most Ridiculous Wedding Ever. Did you get your tickets yet? You will not want to miss it!

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

New Genealogy Charts by Melangerie

Ever go to a wedding and scour the crowd to figure out who is related to the bride and groom? I know I have! Elana from Melangerie, a Brooklyn-based design consultancy, sent me her latest genius genealogy chart, and it is the perfect solution for getting the scoop on the guests at a wedding. Melangerie's well known genealogy charts detail the relationships of the bride and groom to all of their wedding guests. Great for cocktail hour and receptions, these charts fill guests in on who’s a friend from childhood, a neighbor, a family member, and more. They also serve as a lovely piece of wedding memorabilia. Melangerie's latest genealogy chart is fresh and modern and uses various shades of color to map out the guests. Pick your own color palette to match your wedding colors, as these charts are completely custom.

Check out Melangerie's portfolio on their site or their Etsy site to view their other bespoke gifts.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Witch Hat Recipe

In my earlier post, I mentioned that I would share the recipe and the DIY steps for the witch hat recipe that we created. The recipe consists of just cake, pudding, an ice cream cone and sprinkles - how easy is that for a Halloween recipe? The steps are below. Enjoy!

Square or horizontal cake - it can be any flavor and can be store-bought or homemade, cut in 1/2 horizontally
1 box of pistachio Jello pudding mix, make according to box instructions
1 cup of royal icing or frosting
1 cup of chocolate sprinkles
8 cookies for the rim of the hat (can be a chocolate disk or sugar cookie), but make sure that it is 2 inches wider than the top of the cone
8 cones (chocolate or sugar) - We used both in this illustration. If you can't find chocolate cones, then you can paint sugar cones with melted chocolate
Makes 8 witch hats

Using the base of the cones as a template, cut around the cones to make 4 cake circles.

Here is a picture of what your cake circles should look like.

Using a serrated knife, cut the cake circles horizontally to make 8 cake circles. Set the circles aside. Using leftover cake, put small bite sized pieces of cake in the bottom of the cones. This is so the pudding doesn't leak through the bottom of the cone.

Place your pistachio pudding in a pastry bag and fill up the cone until it almost reaches the top of the cone. Leave about 1/2 inch of room so that you can put your cake circle on top.

Now place your cake circle on top of the pistachio pudding to seal the cone.

Put your royal icing into a pastry bag and pipe it around the edge of the cookie. You can use any colored icing because the icing will be covered with sprinkles.

Using an offset spatula, spread the icing on to the base of the cookie. This will allow the sprinkles to adhere to the cookie.

Gently pat the chocolate sprinkles on top of the royal icing.

Take your sealed pudding cone and place it on top of sprinkled cookie witch hat rim.

Here is our finished witch hat!

Witch Hat Dessert Project

In preparation for Halloween, we've been testing some easy and fun Halloween recipes at Amy Atlas Events. This recipe is a chocolate cone filled with chocolate cake and pistachio pudding. It is super easy to make and is the perfect spooky treat for Halloween entertaining. Check back later for the recipe so you can diy at home!

Friday, September 25, 2009

Flower Pins by Linda and Harriet

I've been a fan of Linda and Harriet custom letterpress invitations for some time, but I recently discovered their charming flower pins and I adore them! Not only can you wear these flower pins should you be sporting a Carrie Bradshaw look, but you can also use them for wrapping gifts, creating garlands, embellishing cakes...the possibilities are really endless. I'll be ordering these soon for decorating a shower...the client loves flowers and these will add a fun touch to the decor.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

DIY Project - Papier Mache Planets

In my last post about my son's space birthday party, I mentioned that Linda Facci of Facci Designs would be joining us here to share DIY tips on how to make papier mache. Linda created the papier mache planets for Zach's party. Linda is an incredibly gifted artist. She was the design director for InStyle magazine for many years, and now owns her own graphic design boutique in NYC. She also happens to be a master crafter and is skilled in a variety of techniques, including papier mache. So when I was looking for papier mache planets for Zach's party, I knew that Linda was the person to turn to.

Here are Linda's DIY tips for creating the papier mache planets...Keep in mind that this is quite a labor-intensive DIY project!

Linda gathered an assortment of round balloons

She then created her papier mache mixture by mixing flour and water

Linda dipped strips of newspaper into the flour mixture

Linda applied three layers of strips to each balloon, allowing each layer to dry in between

On a damp day, this helped speed up the drying process

A closeup of the wet papier mache

Once dry, Linda painted each planet with a coat of white primer before applying the color. Then they dry again.. I love how Linda rested the planets on flower pots!

Linda used acrylic paints. The colors are easy to mix and they clean up easily with water.

The first layer of color. Then more drying time. Linda also added hooks to each planet so I could hang them.

A closeup of Neptune and Venus. With two coats of base color, a second darker or lighter color is sponged on to bring out the texture. A gloss coat is then sprayed on to give the planets some shine and protection.

The eight planets!

To view Linda's portfolio, visit her site or her blog.

1, 2, 3...Blast Off!

Last week was my son Zachary’s birthday and we threw him a birthday party that was out of this world! It was a small party, with just his pals from school, and all the kids had a blast! The party was at the Craft Studio (they were amazing, btw!), an adorable kid's birthday venue in Manhattan. His small table (I didn’t want to go crazy, after all…he is only 5!) came with a space cake, space cookies, and earth ball chocolates.

Here are some details that had Zach over the moon...

Keeping with our signature monochromatic look, we limited the colors to red, white, blue and silver.

We had a space cake created with ufo cookies, planet cookies and rocket cookies.

Remember satellite wafer candies? We used these nostalgic candies to create a flying saucer garland to border our cake plate. It was really fun making that! We also used a milkglass cake stand with a ring around the stand to mimic the ring around Saturn.

We included a cookie favor board so that the kids could take cookies home after the party. We found fabric with little red stars and used it to tie around cello bags on a space cookie favor board.

We provided these personalized rocket-shaped favors for Zach's friends to take home. We filled all of the rocket favors with foiled chocolate earth balls.

We provided these personalized rockets hats for Zach and his friends to wear during the cake festivities.

We hung this personalized rocket garland above the cake.

We hung papier mache planets over the table. DIY details from my dear friend Linda Facci of Facci Designs on how to make these later on my blog!

The kids did space-inspired activities (space face painting, space plaster projects) on these customized constellation table mats. The table was also filled with more papier mache planets to make the kids feel as though they were in space!

Other favor goodies included star brownies, astronaut food and space2-0 water from the the space store, as well as rocket lollipops.

Photography by Jen Huang Photography.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

DIY Project - Acorn Garland Template

My last post included the recipe for cinnamon pistachio meringues from our Faux Bois post. Here is the acorn template from that autumn-inspired story for a fun, diy project for the fall. Simply print the template out, cut out the acorn garland, and hang! Enjoy!

Cinnamon Pistachio Meringue Recipe

I promised in yesterday's post that I would provide the cinnamon pistachio meringue recipe from the faux-bois story. I can honestly say that these are the best meringues I have ever had. Let me just be clear, I have tasted a LOT of meringues! The recipe is really easy to follow with few ingredients and little preparation so even the novice baker will not be intimidated. If you need a simple recipe for baking and entertaining, this recipe should definitely be added to the recipe box!

Cinnamon Pistachio Meringue

4 large egg whites
1 cup sugar
1 pinch of cream of tartar
1 1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon powder
1 cup pistachio (chopped)

Preheat oven 175F

Over double boiler stir together egg whites, sugar and cream of tartar with a whisk until all the sugar granules are dissolved.

With an electric mixer with a whisk attachment, whip egg white mixture until stiff peaks form.

Fold in cinnamon powder with a rubber spatula.

Using a piping bag, pipe meringue mixture onto parchment lined baking sheets. Sprinkle chopped pistachio over meringue and put in oven at 175F for 40 to 45 minutes.

Peel baked meringue from parchment paper and store in airtight container or serve immediately!


Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Happy Fall - Faux-Bois Fun!

I posted last week about a project that we were working on at Amy Atlas Events. Since today is the first day of fall, we decided to create a fall-inspired dessert story to kick off the new season. A faux-bois pattern and acorns were the inspiration for the story.

We created a lovely faux-bois paper for the backdrop as well as a custom acorn garland to drape over the backdrop. We'll provide a template for the acorn garland tomorrow!

For desserts, we made two almond fondant cakes and placed them on tree trunk cake stands. We also created pistachio cinnamon meringue (we'll provide a recipe for the meringues tomorrow) and tuiles filled with spiced-apple custard. We wrapped hazelnut truffles with custom faux-bois tissue paper.

Happy fall!

Photography by Rainbeau Seitz.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Coordinate Your Bar!

One of the things I love doing is bringing the design of my dessert table to the bar. Often I take custom paper that I use for the dessert table and create custom bartender trays. I've been a fan of Dabney Lee's gorgeous lucite tray collection for some time now. I recently saw that Dabney has added ice buckets to her collection. You can view all of her lovely designs here. Not only are her products a lovely way to infuse design into the bar area, but they also make lovely wedding or housewarming gifts. Check out some of her patterns below. Her designs are so lovely that it is tempting to create a whole dessert bar from one of her patterns!

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