27 Dresses Shower

Have you seen the movie 27 Dresses?  It's the cute one starring Katherine Heigl as a girl who has been a bridesmaid in 27 different weddings. 

My friend Kendra is very much like Katherine's character in this movie.  To date, she's been in nineteen (19!) different weddings, and of those, she was a bridesmaid in 12 of them.  That means that, like Jane in the movie, Kendra has a closet full of dresses that probably won't ever be worn again.

I decided to change that and give at least one of those dresses a chance to find their way back out of the closet.  Kendra's own wedding is coming up this summer and to celebrate, we threw her a 27 Dresses-style shower.

I really hate that I had to doodle all over that picture, but you know, better safe than sorry.  Don't want any creepers showing up at my house.  Didn't the invitation turn out super cute??  As always, I used the very talented Mr. Matthew Washburn for the design work.  He really outdid himself on this one. 

The invitation hung on the chalkboard in my kitchen during the shower.  In case you can't read the text in the picture above, it read:

Many times a bridesmaid but now a bride, let's shower Kendra before the knot is tied.

Please dress like a bridesmaid from head to toe, and we'll judge your ensemble in the fashion show!

Um, doesn't everyone love getting to pull out an old bridesmaid dress and wear it again?

Before we get to the actual party pictures, let me take a minute to walk you through the details.  I'm sorry if this bores you to death, but sometimes I look back on these to make sure I don't do/cook the same things at every party. 

I decided early on to use a pink and green color scheme.  Kendra's wedding colors are actually green and brown, but her bridesmaids had already thrown a shower using those colors.  Besides, why not switch it up a little?  My mom found this cute door flower at a local gift shop.  It was perfect for inviting my guests in to our house.  And the best part is that I can leave it hanging up for a while as a summer decoration.  [Side note:  When I hung this up last Friday evening, even Wyatt commented on how much he liked it.  "Sometimes you need some decorations for between holidays."  His words, not mine.  I swear I didn't pay him to say that.]

Like I said, I decided early on that my color scheme would be pink and green and here's why:  When my Memaw passed away I inherited this set of dishes from her.  I've been waiting for an excuse to use them.  I had hoped last summer that the baby shower I hosted could be really girly and I could use them then, but since two of the moms-to-be were expecting boys and the other was a surprised, that plan didn't work out.  I was thrilled to get to pull them out for this shower.

Since my guest list was longer than the number of plates I inherited, I had to borrow some more dishes from my mom.  Luckily, she has a pink and green flowerdy (new word) set that coordinated pretty well.

Now, my grandmother may not have had many plates in her set (only 8 dinner plates and 4 salad plates), but she had every accent piece imaginable!  Next time I use these I'll need to remember to serve coffee so that I can use the pitcher, cream, and sugar dishes.  For this shower, I just set them out on display.  Aren't they pretty?

To carry out the pink and green color scheme, I bought several bundles of pink and green flowers and tried my hand at floral arrangements.  Flower arranging is hard, y'all.  It didn't help that my flower selection was limited to mostly carnations.  I had hoped for some pretty daisies but after stopping at three different stores, I decided the carnations would have to do.  Anyway, I got my vases out and made a grid out of clear tape across the opening of the vase like the pros do, but I still had a really hard time making them look any good.  My arrangements mostly looked like tall vases with flowers shooting straight up out of them.  There was no draping or floppy flowers or anything like that.

Here's the lopsided arrangement I made for the centerpiece on the food table.

This is a vase that Doc and I received as a wedding gift.  I hadn't ever used it so I was excited to pull it out for this shower too.   Look at the detail of the ceramic (I think?) flower on it.

Here's an upclose picture of my lopsided flowers.

I did two more vases full for the mantle.  Again with the sticking-straight-up flowers.  And see the green ribbon that I draped across the mantle?  We'll come back to that.

This one (pictured below) is from the left-side of the mantle and was the best I could do at trying to get the flowers to fall/drape/spread out to the sides.  See that white carnation sticking up to the right?  If you look closely, you'll see that it's taped together.  The flower stem snapped and the head was hanging but I needed a white flower on that side.  Scotch tape to the rescue!  Ha.  Then it was extra fragile and I was scared to push it down into the vase so it just got to stick out all by itself. 

Although my arrangements were kinda lacking, my bud vases did turn out pretty cute.  Remember the balloon vases I showed you?  Here's how I ended up using them.

My last flower project was to make a tulip bouquet.  Simple, right?  That's what I thought, anyway.  It's really not as easy as grabbing the bundle and wrapping some ribbon around them.  I had to tear off leaves and then start with one tulip and add them one by one, working my way in a circle to make the bouquet.  And it still didn't turn out as well as I thought it should have.

Of course I wrapped my gift to match the color scheme.  Who do you think I am?

So that's the extent of the decorating I did.  Now let's talk food.  To be honest, I didn't go all out on this part because I originally had plans to be out of town all day on Saturday and needed the food items to be either something I could make ahead of time or something that could easily be done the day of.  I'll admit, my mom carried more than her weight in this department.  She made most of the food. 

Chicken salad in filo cups, courtesy of my mom.

Heart-shaped sandwiches with Mom's homemade pimento cheese.

Cheeseball by - you guessed it - my mom.

Do I even have to tell you who made this BLT dip?

Assorted "quiche" type things, courtesy of Kroger's freezer section.

Eggrolls from Sam's with Mom's homemade jezebel sauce.

We ran out of room on the dining table (I took the leaf out so it was smaller than usual) so the desserts were displayed on the kitchen table.

I cheated and ordered cupcakes instead of making them myself.  I was supposed to be out of town, remember?  These were made by one of my friends from high school.  She's just started her business, CAZ Confections and Creations.

I made another batch of the heart brownies to go with the cupcakes.  See?  I did make something. 

I made those brownies the weekend before and then stuck them in the freezer.  I was nervous about them not tasting fresh but I thought they were delicious! 

To wash all that yummy food down, we had soft drinks, fruit tea, and champagne.  The champagne was not just a glass of champagne, though.  It came with an edible flower in it!

Yummo!  I chickened out and didn't eat the hibiscus in my champagne, but maybe I'll be brave enough to try it next time.  Luckily for me, there's plenty of flowers left and maybe even some champagne so I'm gonna "go ahead, keep the party going."  (Don't know that quote?  Click the link and skip to the 8 minute mark.)

Ok, ok, enough of the details.  People were actually there too.  Except this is where I'm kicking myself because I didn't take nearly as many photos as I would've liked to.  For instance, I don't have any good shots of all the pretty bridesmaid dresses that made their way to my house.  As each Honorary Bridesmaid arrived, they were handed the tulip bouquet and asked to stand on the bottom step of my stairs to have their portrait made.  These pictures were taken with a polaroid camera.  Remember that green ribbon on the mantle that we were gonna come back to?  This is where it came into play.

After each polaroid was taken, it got numbered and clothespinned to the ribbon.

Throughout the party, the guests were encouraged to admire each other's outfits and then vote for the "Most Likely To Be Worn Again," "Least Likely To Be Worn Again," and "Best Accessories."  So I did take a picture of each Honorary Bridesmaid's full getup, but they were taken on the polaroid camera instead of my digital one and then went home with the bride for her scrapbook.  Boo.  I didn't even take a picture of all the polaroids hanging on the mantle. 

Now, let me back up a minute and say that earlier that morning I did start to panic that no one would dress up.  What if no one was as excited about the theme as I was?  Or worse, with the downpouring rain, what if no one even showed up? 

Had I stopped to really think about it, I could've put my mind at ease by remembering that my good friend Mary Elizabeth was on the guest list.  I like Mary for lots of reasons - she's sweet, funny, thoughtful, an all around good friend - but also because when the girl hears "theme party," she runs with it.  I have never known her to pass up an opportunity to put on a costume, so it should not have surprised me at all when she showed up in this:

That color!  That lace! That bow! Those sleeves!

Mary can find a gem hidden on a Goodwill rack like it's nobody's business.  And as if the dress wasn't enough, she completed her ensemble with a set of pearls and an updo.  LOVE that girl.  (Is it any surprise that she took home the prize for "Least Likely To Be Worn Again?")

Roxy came straight to my house from another obligation so she didn't get the chance to throw on a bridesmaid dress.  We couldn't help compare, though, the similarities between her peach blouse and Mary's dress.  Besides being the same color, they both had v-neck detailing and poofy sleeves that were gathered at the bottom.  It's like the same outfit evolved over decades of fashion.

[Please excuse the yellowness of this photo.  Clearly my Auto White Balance doesn't know what it's doing.]


These Honorary Bridesmaids looked like they may be headed to a ball in their floor-length gowns.

Meghan, sandwiched between Megan and Allison, took home the prize for "Most Likely To Be Worn Again."  While Allison was at home working on her bouffant, her husband may or may not have asked her if she was supposed to look Pentecostal. 

Here's the bride with her mom.  Can you believe that with 12 bridemaid dresses to choose from, she still decided to borrow one from a friend?  I guess she really doesn't want to wear any of those dresses again.

Also in attendance were Catherine and Sarah (and Roxy, but I already mentioned her).  Loving those pearls, ladies!

I really wish I had a full body shot of Catherine because what you can't see in this picture is how her cornflower blue dress is gathered to the side with pearls and then splits to show off the lace underlay.  Also not pictured are her matching cream colored heels and the bouquet she brought with her.  Obviously she had the "Best Accessories."

Normal shower things happened at the party, too.  We all watched as Kendra opened all of her gifts.

My mom and I took a break from the dishes to grab a plate of food during the present opening.  See that necklace I'm wearing?  It's the jewelry I wore with that blue bridesmaid dress back in '05.  If you look closely you can see that the silver pieces on the "drop" part of the necklace no longer match the silver chain.  Gotta love the tarnish!

Mom ate her heart out.  Har.

No shower is complete without a picture of the hostesses.  This is the only one I got where you can kinda see our dresses!

Me and Darbie with the bride.

Thanks to the tornado sirens that started going off, the shower wrapped up rather quickly.  We flipped on the weather channel as soon as we heard them and when we decided the coast was clear, everyone made a run for their car to head to their own homes and safe shelters.  I guess they didn't all want to be stuck having to cram into our half bath with me. 

Thank you, friends, for humoring me and dressing up for the party.  And congrats, Kendra!  It's getting close!  Like I said in your card, may 7-9-11 be your BEST walk down the aisle!