Vivienne's Baptism: Chic on the Cheap

We baptized my daughter, Vivienne, last month and threw a reception afterwards. I had fun planning it, but it wasn't without constraints. So here is what I was working with: as inexpensive as I could without compromising elegance, as easy as I could make it without having to hire a troop of staff to do it for me. With those goals in mind I set out to give my daughter a sweet an elegant party.
I found a cute little hall in downtown Kirkland called Heritage Hall that only charged $60 an hour - how perfect!! That way I didn't need to clean my house from top to bottom or rent tables and chairs to be brought in. And it was simply adorable. I ended up renting table clothes which cost about the same as the hall rental, but if I compromised on those, the tables would have looked pretty shabby and would have ruined my whole asthetic. Fine. I will bite it on that one. Then I wanted table runners to dress up the tables since my flowers were going to be minimal. I came up with the idea to by burlap since it is SUPER cheap and then I cut the width in three to maximize my yardage and then my mother-in-law did a quick stitch one inch in and then we frayed them to give a casual finish to them. It only cost $22 for nine table runners!! I also was resourceful with our local farmers market and talked to one of the flower vendors. He gave me his card to call him a day or two before the event and I could go out there to get as many flowers as I wanted. I spent $120 for soft pink peonies that were to die for. If I went to a florist I would have been charged up the wazoo!

Next was food which could have been a huge production to do on my own or hugely expensive to have it all catered. I decided to have mini sliders catered and found a local catering company that allowed me to just do the sliders (The Catering Company). They were fantastic. I then bought large bags of fancy Kettle chips and dressed them up in wax paper baggies tied with some hemp string. Super cheap, yet fun and elegant looking! The rest of the food I kept to just simple finger munchies, like feta, olives, marinated cherry tomatoes, sugar snap peas and strawberries with lime curd and sweet sour cream. And for dessert everyone loves mini cupcakes and there is less guilt involved if it's mini, right?

Also to save money, I did the invitations myself and printed them at home. Everything turned out wonderfully and thankfully despite not having an afternoon nap, Vivienne was an angel all day and was flirting with the guests. One of the things I like most about throwing a party is how creative I can be to make it look as inviting fun and elegant without just throwing money here and there to do so.

I've included a few photos of the invite, tables and one of my daughter.