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I’m party planning again, which is always fun (check out a few ideas from an anniversary party earlier this year).  I put together these matchstick holders to give away as party favors!   I love the monogrammed version of the holder made by Sugar & Cloth, but since I had to put 80 of these together, I decided to forego the etched letter.

I used Martha Stewart’s etching cream (which I’ve used on other projects here and here) to etch the bottom of the bottles.  The etching cream results in a roughed up surface to strike the match.  Still, the key to this project is strike anywhere matches!  Strike them on the etched bottom of the glass and they ignite just fine.  (The regular strike on box matches will not work).

I used Avery string labels as tags wrapped around the bottles. The labels were a little too big as is and dwarfed the bottles,  so I modified them by cutting them down to a smaller size.  One side of the label says:  a perfect match and the other side says:  strike on bottom!

These bottles from Amazon were $50 for 96.  I found the matches at Ace Hardware for $1.50/box (2 boxes of 300 each).  The total cost came to just $0.68/per favor and they are so cute!  I love how they are useful too, especially for people like me who burn candles frequently and appreciate having matches nearby!



We recently co-hosted a martini tasting party and it was so much fun!   To begin, we sent out Evites with the following wording announcing the idea:

Join us for a martini tasting!  We’ll provide the martinis. Please bring an hors d’oeuvre you think will complement a martini.  Cocktail attire welcome! (Dressy casual okay)

Originally, we googled martini ideas and chose some of the standards, i.e.,  dirty, chocolate, and a cosmo.   In the end though, we ended up coming up with a few of our own creations and served six martinis (in smaller tasting amounts). We had plenty of appetizers, and included food served in martini glasses, like this Caprese salad.

Our final tasting menu:

Round 1 – Dirty martini or Limoncello martini (for those that don’t like olives).  For the dirty, we used Ketel One vodka and for the lemon martini, we used 360′s Sorrento Lemon vodka.  These were made fresh to order.

Round 2 – The JC, our own creation.  We premixed a batch ahead of time and just added the fresh lemon juice at serving time. The key to this drink is the cranberry vodka.  Deep Eddy’s is smooth and delicious!

Round 3 – Bitter Orangetini, our own creation. We premixed this one too, just adding the bitters upon serving.  We placed one mandarin orange segment in the glass before pouring.

Round 4 – the Citrus Biscuit, our own creation and premixed as well.

Round 5 – a Chocolate Martini.   For the final dessert round, we went with a classic recipe that we also premixed and just added a Hershey’s kiss to the glass upon serving.  This one was a big hit!

  • 2 shots whipped cream vodka
  • 1 shot Godiva chocolate liqueur
  • 1/2 shot half & half

For the three rounds with our own creations,  we asked guests if they could identify any of the main ingredients.  It was a lot of fun to hear their thoughts and ideas and we had a great time serving them.   I look forward to doing it again and coming up with a new set of recipes!

Let me know if you give any of the recipes a try!

Want more cocktail ideas?  See the Projects page for more recipes!

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