Martini Bar Ideas fantabulosity.com Red apple martini and White Chocolate Peppermint Martini
Christmas, Holiday, Parties

Favorite Things Party: “Plaid” Style…

Oh how everyone was looking forward to a Favorite Things party again this year!  There’s just something about all of your gal pals getting together for one night, to sip on cocktails, eat fancy foods, and chatting all night long.  Throw in a gift exchange of your favorite items

…it’s hard to beat.

Favorite Things Party Ideas! How fun, for a girls night and gift exchange

Favorite Things Party: Winter Edition

If you saw my Favorite Things party last year, then you may already have a good idea of how it works.  {At least how we do it at my house.  I’ll give more party “how-to” tips below.}

Last year was the first “Favorite Things Party,” and before the night was over, we were already saying how we couldn’t wait to do it again.  So… this year rolled around, and it was a no-brainer.  It all began with my current obsession of “plaid.”  Red, black & white were the colors, and plaid was EVERYWHERE.  {Including my dress. 😉 }

Favorite Things Menu

When it’s just the gals getting together, I like to keep it classy.  Most of us are moms, so we spend the majority of the time, covered in spaghetti o’s, and graham cracker crumbs.  This is a night about “us,” so creating a menu that screams a little “fanciness,” makes all of us a feel a little more “human.”

(I ordered two plaid blanket’s from Target, to position down the center of my table, to tie in the plaid theme.  Plus… I get to keep the blankets and use them in my living area now. WIN!)

Favorite Things Party Ideas - How to Host Favorite Things Party fantabulosity.com

We had an assortment of appetizer-type goodies, along with a few items to tame our sweet tooth cravings.

Favorite Things Party Ideas - How to Host Favorite Things Party fantabulosity.com

Meatballs: Stick a mini fork in them, and all of a sudden, they’re a classy cocktail appetizer… and not a Superbowl side dish.

Favorite Things Party Ideas - How to Host Favorite Things Party fantabulosity.com

Caprese Rosemary Skewers: I saw my gal Ree, from the Pioneer Woman whip these up, about two weeks before my party, and I knew they had to be on my menu.  For goodness sakes they’re adorable and delish.

Caprese skewers on rosemary sprigs Favorite Things Party Ideas - How to Host Favorite Things Party fantabulosity.com

Bruschetta: Oh the bruschetta.  How I love thee.  I literally make this about once a week, and just have it for dinner, by myself.  You can get my bruschetta recipe here!

Bruschetta Favorite Things Party Ideas - How to Host Favorite Things Party fantabulosity.com

French Bread Pizzas: Gotta give it up to the Pioneer Woman again.  She had french bread pizzas on a recent show, and well… one of my “favorite things,” is pizza, so it had to be on the menu.  I did slice mine in to smaller pieces, so they’d be easier to handle.  My favorite?  I made one with Canadian bacon and pineapple. THIS, will be on my weekly dinner rotation from here on.  We also had tomato/basil, and pepperoni & black olive options to choose from.

French Bread Pizzas for cocktail party style. Finger foods for Favorite Things Party Ideas - How to Host Favorite Things Party fantabulosity.com

Tortellini Skewers: Cheese and pasta.  Pasta and cheese.  Arrange it on a skewer, and cover it in a little bit of pesto. I actually served these chilled, rather than warm, for a little twist on the usual.

Cheese tortellini skewers with pesto. Perfect appetizer for cocktail party. Favorite Things Party Ideas - How to Host Favorite Things Party fantabulosity.com

Oreo Peppermint Bark: Oh dessert!  My “favorite,” part.  I’m part of a “mastermind group,” of bloggers, where we share some of our blog posts with one another… and one of my blogging gals posted a recipe for Oreo Peppermint Bark, about 3 days before my party.  “Red, black, and white!?”  Plus… it was easy to make?  I totally made a last minute addition to the menu.  Thank you A Pumpkin and a Princess!

Chocolate Peppermint Bark Favorite Things Party Ideas - How to Host Favorite Things Party fantabulosity.com

Reese’s Peanut Butter Mini Cheesecakes: When I saw these little glorious mini cheesecakes from Best Recipes Ever, they were a MUST for our dessert portion.  I mean, bite-size… peanut butter… chocolate… cheesecake… cute as can be…. done.  My gal pal Kate made these for me, because she knew I was pressed for time, and well because, she’s just plain fabulous.

Reeses Mini Cheesecakes. Perfect dessert for cocktail party. Favorite Things Party Ideas - How to Host Favorite Things Party fantabulosity.com

Cupcakes: Ahhh…. plaid cupcake wrappers.  During my online shopping craze for this party, if it was plaid… it was in my cart.  Besides, who doesn’t love a good ole fashion cupcake? {That you don’t have to share with your toddler.} 😉

Cupcakes with plaid liners or wrappers! Favorite Things Party Ideas - How to Host Favorite Things Party fantabulosity.com

Mini Chocolate Cakes: Don’t ask me where this idea came from.  Perhaps my abundant love of chocolate?  I picked up a DELICIOUS looking chocolate cake at a bakery, took small pieces, and put them in to mini martini-glass shaped dishes, topped with a little whipped cream, and layered on another bite of cake.  Easy, classy, and decadent. 

Bite Size Chocolate Cake for cocktail party Favorite Things Party Ideas! How fun, for a girls night and gift exchange

Martini Bar

Did you see me on TV a few weeks ago?   I was telling you how I always love to have a “WOW,” factor at all of my parties.  You don’t have to go crazy to make your party memorable.  Sometimes I think that people stress themselves out, by making sure everything they do, is top-notch and crazy over the top.  But really, if you have one big “WOW,” factor??? Odds are, your guests will love that one thing so much… that the rest just flows around it, looking all fabulous-like too.

This is where my Martini Bar came in.  I wanted a little “umph,” in my cocktail options this year.  I may, or may not have also wanted a cocktail selection that didn’t require too many sips, to make the “moms,” relax a little quicker.  Martini’s usually do that for me, and I had never seen a “martini bar,” created before… so my “WOW,” factor was born.

Martini Bar Ideas fantabulosity.com Red apple martini and White Chocolate Peppermint Martini

To keep things simple, and not to overwhelm my guests…

I had TWO martini options that the gals could choose from.  A classy, smooth, semi-tart, Red Apple Martini or a sweet, dessert-like, White Chocolate Peppermint Martini.

With the directions printed out, they were able to create their own as needed.  Believe it or not… I think they had a little fun, being their own bartender.  Creating something for your guests to “do,” for themselves at your party, can bring out their creativity, and will make them feel a little more comfortable and “at home,” for the rest of the party.

Drink Garnishes

If you saw my post of the Red Apple Martini,

Red Apple Martini for Favorite Things Party

…you saw how I lined my martini glasses with coconut flakes.  The red martini and the coconut, made the cocktail look a little like a Santa hat, and since it was close to Christmas, it worked perfectly.  I lined a few more of the martini glasses in crushed peppermint, and left a few plain, for those who weren’t fans of the “extras.”

Martini Bar Ideas fantabulosity.com Red apple martini and White Chocolate Peppermint Martini

Cranberries on Rosemary, {not gonna lie: kind of a pain to put together} were AH-dorable.  Since this was my first time creating these for drink garnishes, I couldn’t help but die laughing, when I looked over and saw one of my gal pals getting slapped in the face with the HUGE rosemary sprig, while she took a sip.  God love her.  Guess next time I’ll make sure the rosemary sprigs are smaller. 😉

Martini Bar ideas, cranberries on rosemary sprigs. Love! fantabulosity.com

I always look for a reason to set out chocolates.  I was so excited to see that some of my guests put a piece of chocolate candy in their White Chocolate Peppermint Martini.  How brilliant are they!?

Martini Bar ideas! Chocolates to go with the sweet martinis. Love! fantabulosity.com

You can’t have a martini bar without blue cheese stuffed olives.  They’re a total fave of mine, and sadly, our local restaurant in town, knows that when I walk in, I want a lemon drop martini with a side of blue cheese olives.  I know… they don’t pair well together, but I can’t help myself.  Blue Cheese olives are just my “thang.”

Martini Bar ideas! Chocolates to go with the sweet martinis, and blue cheese stuffed olives for the others. Love! fantabulosity.com

The party started at 7:00, and by 7:01, these gals were bartending.  I love my friends.  There are just so many things that we have in common. 😉

Martini Bar Ideas White Chocolate Peppermint fantabulosity.com

Martini Bar Ideas Red Apple Martini fantabulosity.com

Favorite Things Party Favors

You know my love for party favors.  If you saw on my Facebook page a few weeks ago, I shared a sneak peek of what I was snagging at IKEA, to give away as party favors.  IKEA had these ah-dorable little fleece blankets for around $3 a piece.  I purchased red and gray to go with my plaid theme, wrapped some ribbon around them, created a party favor tag, and attached a little piece of spruce {from a tree in my parents yard}, to each one.  By FAR, my favorite party favor creation, EVER.

I styled them on my gold bar cart from Target, placed it by the door, and each guest grabbed one on their way out!

Fleece Blankets with ribbon and spruce sprigs and tags. Favorite Things Party Ideas - How to Host Favorite Things Party Favors

To download the “You’re My Favorite,” party favor tags, click here!

You're My Favorite, Party Favor Tags for Favorite Things Party. Black, Red, White Plaid

Fleece Blankets with ribbon and spruce sprigs and tags. Favorite Things Party Ideas - How to Host Favorite Things Party Favors

I also gave you a sneak peak a few weeks ago, of the sign that I created for the Favorite Things gift exchange.  To see how I made this sign, {with markers… yes, really!}, you can read that post here.

Adult Coloring: Party Signs just look more "custom," when they're drawn or colored. Love this!

How the Gift Exchange Works:

• Each guest brings 3, wrapped, $15 gifts.  {Total of $45.00} The gifts can all be different, or can all be the same thing.

• When guests arrive, they write their own name down, on three sheets of paper. {Or gift tags, if you wanna get a little fancy}

• When you’re ready to begin the gift exchange, decide who will go first.  That person will draw three names from the basket, and give those three people, the three gifts {favorite things of theirs}, out to them.  When doing this, tell them “WHY,” it’s your favorite thing.

• Go around the room, and everyone will go home with three different gifts!  It’s an ABSOLUTE blast.

Favorite Things Party Ideas! How fun, for a girls night and gift exchange

My favorite photo of the night.  If this doesn’t capture how fun, and exciting it is to get someone’s “favorite thing…” I don’t know what does.

Favorite Things Party Ideas! How fun, for a girls night and gift exchange

Favorite Things Party Ideas! How fun, for a girls night and gift exchange

This is where my tripod and remote came in handy.  You know… that I use for my Stitch Fix reviews? 😉

Aren’t these gals all adorable?  They’re my fave.  No doubt about it.  THEYare my favorite thing.

Favorite Things Party Ideas! How fun, for a girls night and gift exchange

After hosting last years Favorite Things party, I’m LOVING seeing others that I know, hosting their own!  I’d love to hear about yours.  How did you do the gift exchange?  What kind of food did you have?  What gifts did you give?  What did you get? Eeek, fill me in!

Favorite Things Party: Summer Edition 2016

Ahem… I may, or may not have already started planning my Favorite Things party for 2016.

As busy as everyone is around the holiday’s, I have decided to host “Favorite Things Party #3,” during the Summer.  That way, we won’t have to juggle schedules, and fight with prior commitments of the holiday’s.  Besides, I kind of have some FABULOUS ideas for a Summer party outdoors with my gal pals…

Until next time,

Jessica Burgess, Fantabulosity Blog

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2 thoughts on “Favorite Things Party: “Plaid” Style…

  1. This party looked like a blast!! Love the plaid theme and all those yummy goodies!!

    1. Jessica says:

      Awww, thank you Keri!!! I wish so bad that you could have attended! We WILL visit each other one day! 😉

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