Oh the fun of a surprise party! All the planning and excitement comes to fruition when the guest of honor arrives and truly is surprised!   Two friends and I threw a surprise 10th anniversary party this past weekend for a lovely couple.   We split up the planning, they handled food and I handled decorations and cake.

anniversary cake

Our goal was to keep things simple but elegant along with keeping costs down.  We chose our color scheme, metallics (gold & silver) with black and white, based on what we already had in our arsenals.    For example, I have 16 silver chargers and my friend had a set of gold chargers.

I rented three 60 inch round tables and twenty five chair covers from a party rental company to host 24 guests (8 per table).   We used metal folding chairs we already had and draped the chair covers over them.

For the tables:
I spent $30 on fresh flowers and made three centerpieces for the three tables.  I arranged hydrangeas and roses in the elevated candle holders and then we placed those flowers arrangements on a mirror charger and surrounded with tea lights.

I wanted to do a napkin presentation that didn’t require a napkin ring.  Napkin rings are nice, but if you don’t make your own, they can be pricey, and then you have to store them.   I decided on the pinwheel napkin fold because it’s really easy to do and looks lovely.

I set up a photo area by using polka-dotted craft paper taped on the wall as a backdrop.  For a photo prop, I made a little chalkboard sign (with a wooden sign from Michael’s and a bottle of chalkboard spray paint)  for guests to identify how many years they’ve been married (or any other fun message) in the photo.

When the guests of honor finally arrived, I was so excited I screeched a little too long!   It was so fun to put it together and I am so glad they were truly surprised.  Three cheers to my two co-hosts – we did it!


On my list of things to do this year is organize and improve the closet situation.   Really, I want to completely revamp my master bedroom closet and design it for better storage and organization.

But before I get there, I decided a first step for the closets in the other bedrooms could be a quick update with paint.   Wouldn’t it be fun to see a bright color when you open a typical, lackluster closet door? I wasn’t quite sure which direction to go in, until I saw this clearance shelf in Lowe’s one day.

Look at all that pink!  I picked up a few quarts to paint the closet in our guest room, which happens to feature fuschia curtains.   The closet in this room is where we store our luggage, but it’s also where guests can hang their items during their stay.

After emptying the closet,  I patched holes (left from removing old wire shelving) and taped off the carpet.   I wanted to see what kind of coverage Pantone paint has so I just started painting.  That was a mistake because I should’ve primed the walls first.  1. This closet has not been painted in over 20 years and 2.  Pink is like red, it takes a lot of coats to get the right coverage.   [I painted 4 coats of red in the dining room!]

I got so uninspired after the 2nd coat went on and you could barely tell a difference between it and the first coat.  I kind of gave up on the project and just quickly finished the 3rd coat using up all the paint I had .  It could use another coat but I gave up and called it done.

I took the opportunity to sort through all of the stuff we were storing in there and I was able to throw away and donate items so that there’s actually less in there now than there was before – which is a good thing!

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