It starts with a little art… inspiration for Little Miss first birthday party

How to use your child’s art as the inspiration for styling their next party

The inspiration for Little Miss Turns One {a small afternoon tea to celebrate our daughter’s first birthday} was a small painting Little Miss made a few months earlier.  I love the look on her face when her chubby little fingers press paint into the paper and colour magically appears.  However, as much as I love my daughter’s colourful pieces, using children’s art to style a party requires balance and a few fresh ideas.  Here is how we did it…


The inspiration…

The simplest way to have your kids create gorgeous art that can be used to inspire your event styling is to control the colour choice.  This is the number one rule!  Pick colours you like or colours your child likes – just be sure to pick only a few colours.  Oh… and ensure to remove the masterpiece before it’s all mixed into a brown mess!

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{The piece we choose for Little Miss Turns One}


The stationery suite…

To begin with, we scanned Little Miss’ painting to create a digital print copy.  Once cropped slightly, this print formed the basis of the stationery suite.  We created an invite, RSVP card and a thank you card (and all associated envelopes) all using the publishing layout within Word and iPhoto on a MacBook Pro; so no fancy software is needed.

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{Front of the invite.  The back of the invite was a full version of the original painting.}


{RSVP card}

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The styling…

Bunting is having a moment.   Through the genius of Spoonflower {one of my favourite new finds} we uploaded a copy of the painting and turned it into fabric.  A triangle template, some cotton tape and a bit of sewing later and the bunting was born.

Spoonflower makes it easy to turn your child’s artwork into fabric, wallpaper, small fabric sticky decals and wrapping paper.  How special to include your child’s creativity in such a unique way?

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I like guests to leave with a little something so I usually do a small lolly bag or boxed cupcake as a treat for the drive or walk home.  To introduce Little Miss’ painting into the favours we uploaded her art to Moo and created small favour tags {known as Moo Mini Cards in the Moo world} to attach to the favour bags with mini pegs.  We also created some stickers using our catherine & grace logos to keep the favour bags closed until the end of the party!

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What else…?

We displayed the original artwork on the gift table in an acrylic frame.

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We hung a copy of the artwork, printed on quality paper, on the front door to guide guests to the correct house and used another copy as part of a dome installation inside.

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We used the Moo mini cards as gift tags on small gifts for the grandparents to thank them for all their help over the year.

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Have you got any other ideas to share?   We would love to hear them!


{and… xxLittle Miss_PNG-72ppi}

Little Miss turns one!

Little Miss Turns One…

Those of you following along on Instagram {@catherineandgracestylefile} will know that over the weekend we wrapped Little Miss Turns One, a small family afternoon tea to celebrate Little Miss’ first birthday.  A perfect Sydney Winter’s day: sunshine and no wind ensured a beautiful afternoon of sweet treats, sparkling drinks and a super spoilt little girl!  Here, a glimpse into the celebrations…


The Styling…

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The Details – the styling

  • On the front door – copy of Little Miss’ finger painting, the original inspiration for the party styling

  • Bunting – created by catherine & grace using Little Miss’ finger painting uploaded to Spoonflower to create printed fabric and cotton tape from No Chintz
  • Domes – created by catherine & grace using Papier D’Amour and Domayne domes and felt balls sourced from Felt & Yarn in Nepal
  • Mini glasses – from A Creative Lifestyle on Etsy with lavender chevron paper straws from Sweet & Snazzy on Etsy
  • Large “ONE” wooden letters – originally from Fijian fishing boats sourced from Dirty Janes Emporium & Market in Bowral
  • Florals – by Jane at Floreat Floral and catherine & grace
  • Cake & cupcakes – Simmone Logue.  Cake styling by catherine &grace
  • Ceramic plastic cups (holding candles) – Rob Brandt crinkled ceramic plastic cup series, available from Roots & Wings Design
  • Ceramic berry baskets – from Plenty Home wares, similar styles available from Anthropologie
  • Coffee cups – a catherine & grace DIY using paper coffee cups from Officeworks, white cotton tape from Spotlight and lavender & white twine
  • Lolly bags – created by catherine & grace using paper treat bags and mini pegs from Spotlight & mini cards made by Moo using Little Miss’ painting


So what did we wear..?

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The Details – the outfits

  • Little Miss wore Jacadi dress & cardigan
  • Mummy wore Lisa Ho mountain print skirt, Zara top & Rupert Sanderson heals from Quincy Boutique


A spoilt Little Miss…

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The Details – the spoiling

  • Gifts for Little Miss – wrapped by catherine & grace using silk grosgrain ribbon from Papier D’Amour, as used at our wedding 2 years ago
  • Thank you gifts for grandparents {photos of Little Miss) – wrapped by catherine & grace, using cards made by Moo.
  • Pink jeans & Brenton striped dress – Petit Bateau from Little Miss’ grandparents
  • Hair brush – Mason Pearson from mummy & daddy
  • Pink dress  – Oscar de la Renta from Little Miss’ Aunt & Uncle
  • Ruby Red Shoes – from mummy & daddy


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More styling tips & tricks from Little Miss Turns One coming soon to the blog…


A christening celebration

A few weeks ago we had our little girl christened.  My husband was in charge of the church part and I was in charge of the party!

Thank you to Chris from At Dusk Photography for the absolutely amazing photos – we could not be happier with how the day was captured.  All photos in this post are Chris’ unless otherwise credited.


Our daughter’s nursery is decorated in grey & hot pink, with splashes of turquoise (you can check it out here) so after spying these gorgeous invites on Etsy I decided to carry the pink theme through to her christening and used stripes in the styling for a bit of fun.

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I added various pink, white & grey felt balls to an oversized dome, which we ordinarily use in our living room, to display the invite as part of the styling for the day.  What I love about this display is the height of the dome, used to complement the lower serving of sandwiches for people to nibble on.

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I also used the felt balls to create a garland which I strung on our living room ceiling to frame the view of the outdoor area and invite people outside.



I wanted to celebrate our little one’s big day with a bit of fun & whimsy and with a number of little people attending, everything had to be as “kid-proof” as possible.  We filled an apothecary drinks dispenser with strawberry punch and set out little vintage style milk bottles with candy striped straws to drink it out of.  While I must admit I much prefer to have my champagne out of a beautiful glass, I compromised for the sake of safety and sourced sturdy plastic champagne glasses for the celebratory toast.








It was lunch time by the time guests arrived at our house so I wanted to be sure they were sufficiently fed, however I did not want put on a proper sit-down meal.  Our family helped out enormously making delicious cocktail style food, which I then arranged on wooden chopping boards.  The boards pulled in a rustic feel to the day and again ensured that all serving “platers” were completely shatter proof if tipped by a toddler!  Guests were offered small bamboo plates and utensils, stamped with our little girl’s name and I sourced tiny bamboo cups to fill with chopped pink fruits.











Following our wedding almost 2 years ago, my mother-in-law kindly stored the top level of our cake (which was a rich fruit cake) in her freezer.  At the time I had visions of using the top layer as a christening cake for a future son or daughter, so I decided to give it a go.  I styled the cake with some fresh figs, flowers & brown string and it was (somewhat surprisingly) absolutely delicious, if a little crumbly.  My father-in-law, who reportedly does not even like fruit cake, had three pieces! For those interested in the freeze and defrost instructions, I’ll include a blog post soon.

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We were hoping for, and were very lucky to have, a beautiful Autumn day for the celebration which allowed us to use our outdoor space to its best advantage.  Lanterns, recently purchased at Easter markets on the Southern Highlands, were hung from our avocado tree and filled with citronella oil to keep any insects at bay.  I set out giant bubble wands for the kids, which proved a hit.





As guests left, they received a small parcel of lollies filled with chocolate freckles & caramel buds, tied with twine & a little card from Little Miss.




A lovely day for a truly lovely little girl.

xx catherine and grace



The details:

* Florals – once again its Floreat Floral!

* Invite – celebration invitation (stripe), SimplicityPapers, on Etsy

* All other stationary & signage – created by catherine and grace

* Felt balls – 2cm balls,  Felt & Yarn

* Glass dome – purchased from Papier D’Amour.  Similar styles available from Freedom.

* Apothecary drinks dispenser – Sweet Style on Down That Little Lane

* Mini milk bottles – A Creative Lifestyle on Etsy

* Note pink & white striped paper straws – Donna Hay

* Plastic champagne flutes – Coles (in store)

* Pink, white & floral paper napkins – Plenty Kitchen & Tableware, at Westfield Bondi Junction

* Bamboo plates, mini cups, forks, dessert spoons & tea spoons – Donna Hay

* Customised stamp for bamboo cutlery – Sweet Style on Down that Little Lane

* Pale pink & white striped and polka dot paper cups – Donna Hay

* Wooden boards – various, including Fab Slab chopping boards from Harris Farm Markets in Bondi Junction.

* White wooden letters – No Chintz.  Similar styles also available from Typo

* Christening cake – the top layer of our wedding cake by Faye Cahill

* Hanging lanterns – market find

* Bubble wands – Kmart

* Lolly bag pink & white striped tags – Donna Hay

* Little Miss’ pink dress – Jacadi

* Little Miss’ head piece – base headband from Seed, customised by catherine and grace, using my wedding veil from Neil Grigg Millinery


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