TWINK + SIS HALLOWEEN DINNER PARTY

It's spooky season! We were so thrilled to have our Halloween dinner party featured on ELLE Decor. Today, I'm so excited to share even more images and details from our Halloween celebration with you.

THE DESIGN: We wanted to create a stylish and dramatic Halloween dinner party for the adult set. Something fun and festive, without losing the beauty of a sophisticated dinner party. 

The first two key elements of our table were the black flatware and the Jarrahdale (light grey/green) pumpkins. Those two elements were actually the jumping off point for the whole design. 

We purchased the pumpkins from a local pumpkin patch and they really made the table. We knew from the start that we wanted to forgo orange and do something a little more unusual. We were completely in love with these pumpkins and just wanted to cover every inch of the table in them. 

Once we had settled on black and the pumpkins being key aspects, that dictated everything else as we moved forward. We added light grey plates, flowers in deep red/purples as another contrast to the lighter colors, and smokey brown (goblets) to finish it off. We also thought that using classic silver for candlesticks, vases and goblets, added a perfect moody touch. 

We have a rule to always use fresh elements, wherever possible — even at our kids' parties. Whether it be pumpkins, flowers or evergreens, having an abundance of fresh, seasonal items really creates the most beautiful effect.

The plate decorations are actually chestnuts! We really wanted to have the flowers be a bit spooky and unusual. So when we came across these little brown monsters, we knew they would be the perfect unexpected addition to the table.

We loved the glass cloches. We placed some of the black birds, branches and the chestnuts under them. They created a great eerie vibe.

Make the most of your investment: Load up on heirloom pumpkins. Not only do they make great party decor, but they will keep your home festive all the way through Thanksgiving!

THE COCKTAIL: Our signature drink for the evening was “The Darkest Night.” It consisted of fresh muddled blackberries, bourbon, lemon juice and simple syrup, topped off with sparking water. It was like a Halloween soda for grown-ups.

THE DESSERT: The cake was created by Whisk & Whittle. It was a two-tierd (gluten-free) chocolate cake with cream cheese frosting. She created the spiders from marzipan and the web from spun sugar.

CREDITS:

Party Concept, Design, Cocktail & Florals: Twink + Sis

Photography: Sarina Cass of Red Anchor Photo

Cake: Whisk and Whittle

Tabletop sourced from: Borrowed Blu

Flatware: Classic Party Rentals

Candles: Yummi Candles

Skull & Blackbirds: Pottery Barn

Pumpkins: Mr. Bones Pumpkin Patch

 

WHISK & WHITTLE'S TRIO OF THANKSGIVING PIES

It's no secret that we are kind of obsessed with Whisk & Whittle and her stunning desserts. So I am really excited to share THREE of her Thanksgiving pie recipes with you today! This year, I'm all about ordering my holiday desserts from Emily but if you feel like making your own, here are her recipes for Apple, Pecan & Pumpkin Pies (the beautiful Fig Galette on the right is by The Naked Fig).

Apple Pie

1 Recipe Pie Crust, divided into two
6-7 apples, I like to use gala, cored, peeled, sliced into 1/2" pieces
about 1/2 a cup brown sugar (more or less depending on the sweetness of your apples)
1 tsp. Cinnamon
1/2 tsp. Nutmeg
2 Tbs. Tapioca flour or cornstarch
about 2 Tbs. Unsalted butter
1 egg
extra sugar for dusting

Generously flour your workspace. Pull chilled dough out of the refrigerator and roll to about 1/4" which. Dust off the flour, drape the dough into the pie pan. Press it into the corners and sides, letting it hang over about an inch all around. Set it back into the refrigerator while you mix the filling. 

Mix apple slices, brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg and tapioca flour in a bowl. 

Pour the filling into the crust. Cut up the 2 Tbs. of butter into pieces and disperse the pieces evenly on top of the filling.

Roll out the dough for the top of the pie and place it on top of the filling. Roll  the edges and crimp as desired. 

Let chill in the freezer while you preheat the oven to 375 F

Bake for 45 min-1 hour until juices are bubbly and crust is golden brown.

 

Pecan Pie

1 Recipe Pie Crust
2 Cups Pecan Halves
1/4 Cup Brown Sugar
1 Cup Granulated Sugar
1 Tbs. Molasses
1/2 tsp Orange Zest
2 tsp. Vanilla Extract
2 Tbs. Bourbon (optional and recommended)
3 Eggs

Generously flour your workspace. Pull chilled dough out of the refrigerator and roll to about 1/4" which. Dust off the flour, drape the dough into the pie pan. Press it into the corners and sides, letting it hang over about an inch all around. Roll the edges under and crimp as desired. Set it back into the refrigerator while you mix the filling. 

In a smal saucepan, melt butter with sugars and molasses. Remove from heat. Add zest, vanilla, bourbon and salt. Whisk in eggs one at a time. 

Put the pecans in the pie shell. Pour the filling over the pecans and chill the pie while you preheat the oven to 350 F.

Bake for 45 min-an hour until crust is golden and center is set. 

 

Pumpkin Pie

1 Recipe Pie Crust
16 oz. Roasted pureed pumpkin (or, let's be honest, 1 can pumpkin puree)
2 Eggs
3/4 Cup Sugar
1 tsp. Cinnamon
1/2 tsp. Ground Ginger
1/4 tsp. Nutmeg
1/4 tsp. Clove
1/4 tsp. Kosher Salt
1 Cup Half and Half

preheat oven to 375 F

Generously flour your workspace. Pull chilled dough out of the refrigerator and roll to about 1/4" which. Dust off the flour, drape the dough into the pie pan. Press it into the corners and sides, letting it hang over about an inch all around. Roll the edges under and crimp as desired. Set it back into the refrigerator while you mix the filling. 

Whisk together pumpkin, eggs and sugar. Add salt and spices. Slowly add half and half.  

Pour filling into the prepared pie shell. 

Bake for 50-70 minutes until the crust is golden, the edges are set and the center just barely jiggles like jello. 

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Happy baking!!! xx LL

 

 

CIAO BELLA FRANKIE BABY SHOWER

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

My best friend Aubree is expecting her first baby, a little girl named Frankie -- due in just a few weeks! So last month we showered her with a "Girly California" themed-party, with tons of pinks and succulents. We were so thrilled to have the shower recently featured on Style Me Pretty Living. Today I wanted to share even more details of the event with you!

All photos by Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography.

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

We held the shower at the beautiful home of our friend, Paige Long.  The shower ended up being on one of the hottest days of the year, so it was great that the guest-of-honor wanted an evening shower. We let the hot weather dictate the decor by minimizing florals and we opted out of making large arrangements (as we were afraid they would wilt too quickly). Instead, we used a ton of bud vases from our friends at Yummi Candles, mixed with Paige's stunning crystal cups, that she inherited from her grandmother. They added such a beautiful touch. I love having special items like that included in the decor! We used an abundance of succulents, which ended up being the crowd favorite and doubled as party favors! That's always a plus!

Because we decided to have the succulents be the main attraction, we focused on garden roses as the key flower. We used 4 colors (in the pink and coral families) of garden roses, and added peach stock and astilbe as accents.

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

Mary, one of the other hostesses, had a variety of beautiful wooden boxes that she had made for her wedding last year. So we repurposed them as decor this table scape, creating height and a cool earthy vibe. 

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

We made the dip dye napkins by purchasing about 20 yards (we made 60 napkins!) of white gauze and pink dye from Joann Fabrics. To do this, cut gauze into 15" x 15" squares, bunch them up, fold them in half and dip only the first third of the napkin in the dye. Then place on some kind of plastic tarp (I used large garbage bags cut open). Allow to dry overnight and then wash on delicate. I washed these twice (on warm) as I wanted them to fade and bleed more. I loved the way they turned out!

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

The shower's youngest and cutest guest!

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

Dinner was a favorite of our group of friends -- ComidaLA's South American street eats. They made the most delicious summery, corn and avocado salad, special for us, as the perfect accompaniment to their gluten-free arepas. It was perfect summer party food.

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

I really wanted the bar to be a major showpiece. Because it was such a hot day, I knew a variety of ice cold drinks would be an important factor in our guests happiness. I was obsessed with these blush fleur de lis glasses that we rented from Town & Country. Again, we created height using wooden crates, and we put a "pink spin" on all of the beverages, to continue our girly theme.

We made cherry lemonade by puréeing fresh (de-pitted) cherries in the Vitamix and straining them. Then add the purée to your homemade lemonade and it's beyond yummy! The middle drink was strawberry-mint ice water and the right dispenser held the favorite of the night -- ror all of the non-pregnant guests -- a boozy watermelon aqua fesca, that was simply tons of watermelon blended with lime, a touch of fine sugar and water. Add fresh mint and vodka and you have got yourself a surefire hit! We also offered rosé procecco and sparkling water. 

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

And then there's this. The dessert table. Whisk and Whittle killed it again with 4 cakes (gluten-free chocolate with cream cheese chocolate, lemon meringue, strawberry shortcake and carrot cake) and donuts. All more beautiful and delicious than the next. 

A week prior the shower, some of us hostesses got together and had a "craft night" where we created 5 huge paper flowers (using a template from Tania Fischer). Not only did they turn out beautifully, but it was such a fun way to bond with friends when creating an event together. 

To finish off the table we had to give a nod to baby girl Frankie! So we added this beautiful gold and silver acrylic bunting from our faves Meri Meri -- It read our evening’s hashtag #cioabellafrankie!

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

Photo by: Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography

Sis and I would like to thank the other hostesses who helped to make this happen! Love you, Beth, Brandy, Brie, Jodi, Mary, Paige & Paige! We can't wait to meet you, Frankie!! xx

Event Design: Twink + Sis | Photography: Jenna Elliott | Floral Design: Twink + Sis | Catering: ComidaLA| Beverages: Twink + Sis | Bud Vases: Yummi Candles | Bunting Letters And String: Meri Meri | Candles: Yummi Candles | Desserts: Whisk And Whittle | Dip Dye Napkins: Twink + Sis | Drink Dispensers And Buckets: Pottery Barn | Gauze And Dye For Napkins: Joann Fabrics | Paper Flower Template: Tania Fischer Design | Paper Flowers: Twink + Sis | Paper For Crafts: Paper Source | Paper Napkins: Meri Meri| Private Home: Paige Long | Rentals: Town And Country Rentals | Rosé Prosecco: Biokult Österreich | Succulents And Pots: Sunset Nursery | Wooden Forks: Amazon

THE COOLEST CAKES ON INSTAGRAM

I feel like there is the most amazing cake renaissance happening right now. Some cake makers are really taking it to the next level and creating the most daring, artful masterpieces I have ever seen. I also love that the more natural, less junky cake is also taking a front seat in the "cake scene." Here are some of my favorites, currently on Instagram, for your viewing pleasure.

@nectarandstone

@laelcakes

@matchboxkitchen

@andybowdy

@whiskandwhittle

@largemargecooks

@bluebellscakery

@sweetnsaucyshop

@jennaraecakes

@sweetbakes_

@tome____

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Inspiring stuff! xx