Monday, May 18, 2015

Love Is Sweet.. A Toast to Ten Years of Marriage!

The appropriate gift on your tenth wedding anniversary is supposed to be tin. At least, that's what they say. Before my husband and I became parents, we had all kinds of different ideas for our first big milestone anniversary. In the old days (pre-kids) we would make a habit of going away to celebrate. We purposefully got married in April not only for the incredible weather pretty much everywhere, it's a great time of the year for travel (I also saved on flowers for the wedding, everything was in bloom!) Since the kids are so young, and we're not ready to be away from them for an extended period of time, we decided on an anniversary gathering.  "Shabby Chic" was the theme, it's all about the burlap and lace! We decided to keep it really small and simple, mostly bridal party and family were invited.

I've always loved crafting, I can't help but throw myself into whatever event I land upon, the devil is in the details people! When I started gearing up for my wedding ten years ago a planner was born! I literally bought a book titled, "Fire Your Wedding Planner." I dove head first and didn't come up for air until the day of the wedding (barely). The fun part for me is creating all the tiny details.  For my our wedding I just about made everything from scratch, I've spent many a night hot gluing myself to stuff, all in the name of love of course!
Who doesn't love a take-out box favor?

Customized Programs
Place Card Table
Customized Place Cards & Holders
Bridal Bouquet of Roses and Stefanotis
Cake Table

Ten years ago you had to work with your florist to create bouquets from scratch as well as discuss cake designs and concepts with your baker. Before Pinterest started improving parties across the world, crafty folks were forced to get uber creative and use their imagination. It was all about web surfing, magazine clippings and inspiration boards. On any given day I could be found hoarding swatches of fabric, hot glue and perhaps some bows here and there. I loved every minute of it and it was all worthwhile, our wedding was fantastic and there wasn't a cloud in the sky! And yes, I did consult the Farmer's Almanac to check and see what time the sun would be setting on my wedding day so that I could be sure and get the sunset in all of our wedding photos (quit judging me).

Don't get me wrong, I'm a sucker for Pinterest and pulling ideas from where I can. There's just a rush I get when I've created something I've never seen anywhere before. That's one of the reasons I love Crafster, an awesome crafters site with plenty of incredibly original ideas from some insanely talented people.

For the tenth anniversary party I decided to take a back seat and get some decorations from some of my favorite Etsy shops and share them all with you! Etsy is a wonderful site where you can support local shops with local goods for sale (a great tool for all you budding party planners trying to step up your game!)

Let's talk invitations.. We had scheduling issues so the invitations were actually sent very late but nevertheless they were adorable! Proteus Marketing & Design provided these mason jar invitations that were too cute to pass up! They were double sided with a really cool linen effect that blended perfectly with the party decor.

Speaking of decor...

The awesome Amanda of Chalkity Chalk made us this lovely chalk sign we kept on display. I love how it ties into the invitations! We decided to go with lots of candlelight to keep the mood intimate and romantic. The rustic appearance of the candle holders from The Birch House Market went perfectly with our "Shabby Chic" vibe. I purchased garden stakes from the Dollar Store (score!) to hang mason jars and candles along the walkway with the gorgeous lace rosettes hand crafted by the talented Sunshower Flowers. The picture unfortunately does not do these justice, they are so delicate and ornate, perfect for any occasion!

Guests were encouraged to sign our "Guestbook," our vintage type writer picked up at a thrift shop last year. We chose organic popcorn as favors and thanked everyone for "popping by."
This beautiful vintage burlap/lace garland from The Pickled Peanut was just right to help decorate our vintage Baldwin piano. I'm thinking we should have called this the "Vintage Shabby Chic" theme (there seems to be a pattern here).

Just next to the favor display was the bar. In keeping with the flow, we offered our guests their pick of a mason jar with tags to fill out so they could keep their glass. We served the red wine in moonshine jugs and the hard liquor in these awesome vintage (there it is again) "genie in a bottle" type colored decanters. The adorable 'DRINKS' sign with jute was provided by the Lace, Twine & Burlap shop and the cool straws were from Party Paper Straws. It's always fun to serve a signature cocktail for your party, this time around we went with a Raspberry Moscato Sangria, it was dee-lish! 

Whenever I am entertaining, I call on my good pals over at Naked Wines for a case of the good stuff. They have an awesome program and you get $100 off of your first case! #MBMWineClub

Now that we've got the drinks covered, let's move on over to the sweets!

 The incredibly talented Brandy's Bites provided the delicious red velvet cake and the insanely moist carrot cupcakes! How cute is that mason jar design???

The "Sweets" table was adorned with tiny wooden cylinders in keeping with the rustic theme. We kept our thermal signature plate from our wedding all these years and our guests had fun finding their personal messages from ten years ago. The burlap cake banner came from Rustic Daisy Designs and the burlap "Love is Sweet" banner was provided by Bridget from At Company B. This particular fabric garland from Liquid Stars Fabric Creations & More was perfect for the dessert table, it was just long enough and the beautiful color and patterns don't photograph nearly as good as it looked in person.
Who can resist balloons wrapped in tulle?
The key to any party is knowing who to invite. Keeping it close and personal for this occasion was just the right move. We wanted to relive some memories with close friends and family that have watched us grow as a family over the years. This way we could spend more one on one time with everyone and perhaps even enjoy a little jam sesh at the end of the night!

This cool sign was provided by SoCal Wedding Gal.
The gorgeous pink and mint colored backdrop was created last minute by the lovely Chrissie at Party Paper Scissors, she is a busy mom and she still found the time to create this custom banner for our party! The lovely "10" banner from Raw Edge Sewing Co. on the right was filled with such detail and we loved having this over our food table. We kept the food light, just appetizers and desserts is all you need! Mmmmm...
Adorable Heart Garland by 10 Paper Lane.

It doesn't matter which way you go when celebrating your special anniversary. Whether it be a lavish two-week trip to Hawaii (how I miss you Maui), or a small gathering of friends and loved ones that may or may not end in spontaneous performances and lighting heart lanterns on fire at 3am  outside your house desperately trying to catch the wind (don't ask). All that matters is what brought it all together in the first place, love... And love should always be celebrated!

Essentially yours,


Disclosure: Essentially Erika was provided with complimentary goods featured in this article in exchange for a product review. All opinions expressed in this blog post are my own and not influenced in any way by the sponsor.


  1. Wow! Look at these centerpieces! Those are looking stunning. I am really inspired that you celebrated your 10th anniversary in such a fabulous way. Now I really want to celebrate my parent’s anniversary in this way. I wonder if you can recommend an inexpensive vow renewal location!