Hi friends- welcome to Kelly's Garden Party!! My big sister Kelly's bridal shower was yesterday, and it was better than I could have hoped for. Aside from the sun refusing to shine, we all had a great time at the Tower Hill Botanic Garden in Boylston, MA, where we enjoyed some breakfast nibbles, a tour of the gardens, and a lovely lunch. We were joined by a wonderful group of women made up of Kelly's family, her fiancé Tom's family, and some friends. I had such a fun time planning this along with my mom, Tom's mom, and his cousin who works at the Botanic Garden. It took a village, but what a wonderful little village Kelly has. Enjoy some details and photos below!
If you're new here, let me introduce you to my obsession with Rifle Paper Co. paper products and stationary! Kelly was actually the person who introduced me to Rifle Paper Co., and over the years we've marked every birthday and special occasion between us with their beautiful floral cards and wrapping paper. Hosting Kelly's shower at a botanical garden was a no-brainer because she LOVES plants and flowers (she and Tom had 30 plants at the beginning of the shower... and Kelly went home with one from the gift shop to make 31). And using Rifle Paper Co. products for things like the table runners, cups, straws, napkins and more played perfectly into that theme.
When guests arrived, we had a spread of blueberry scones, cinnamon buns, and yogurt parfaits with fresh fruit and granola waiting for them. And, of course, the mimosa and Bloody Mary bar was in full-swing.
How cute is this planter box? I found two of them at Michael's, and Kelly got to keep them after to use inside or in her garden. Although I would have opted for slightly fancier cutlery, my mom insisted that we be as environmentally friendly as possible in honor of the bride, who makes a habit of this in her daily life. So the cutlery, the yogurt parfait cups, and the plates we used were all biodegradable! We ordered them from a website called Green Paper Products. It was super easy, and Kelly was pleased.
Can we take a minute to fully take in these incredible flowers? They were supplied and arranged by Lynn Curcio from F. as in Flowers in Exeter, NH. Lynn is a good friend of the groom's family, and she'll be Kelly and Tom's florist for their wedding. Lynn based her arrangements off of the colors in the table runner and we were all in awe of how stunning they looked. They truly brightened up the drizzly day.
In keeping with the botanical theme, the favors included chocolates with edible flowers from Byrne & Carlson, a chocolatier based in Portsmouth, NH, as well as these little bud vases that doubled as place-cards. Kelly has a collection of old glass bottles, so when her fiancé's mom came across these, she snatched a whole bunch of them up. I loved them because no two bottles were the same. To make the place-cards, I used recycled paper that I cut out from the borders of an old Rifle Paper Co. calendar! I glued everyone's name on top, and then glued that to a small tag on which I had affixed a little flower. Each one of the name cards was different, too, and everyone was so happy to take them home!
For Kelly's guest book, I bought a book off of her registry that features around 40 flowers and details on what other flowers to pair them with and how to arrange them. We had each guest pick their favorite flower (or one close to it) and write a little note of well-wishes on that page. I think everyone really enjoyed looking through it to find their flower, and I even saved a few for some loved ones who couldn't join us (like the Rose, for Kelly's bridesmaid Rosie).
There she is, the beautiful bride (and her MOH)! The true show-stopper at the shower (besides Kelly in her floral maxi dress) was the dessert table. All of the desserts were baked by Kelly's future mother-in-law Marryann Kane, of Simply Elegant Cakes!! Kelly is SO lucky to be marrying into a family with a phenomenal baker. But here's the real treat... those stunning floral cupcakes were decorated by Tom!! He spent hours caked in frosting and food dye to do something special for his bride-to-be. None of us ladies could believe Tom's intricate work, and we all agreed they were almost too beautiful to eat...almost ;).
After everyone enjoyed some breakfast bites (and carefully eyed the dessert table for later), we headed out to tour the gardens! Luckily, the rain held up for us and we were able to walk the grounds like we had planned. We split up into two groups so that we could all hear and enjoy what the two docents had to share with us.
How cute does she look?! And how beautiful is this magnolia tree? We were thrilled that we were allowed to roam the grounds with our celebratory drinks. Grey skies had nothing on these flowers or this bride. This floral enthusiast was in her element!
Here's a group shot of our half of the tour. We learned afterward that it was our guide's first time ever giving a group tour, and he did a great job (as a photographer and a docent!).
After touring the grounds, we came back inside for a light lunch and a few games (I was the emcee so I didn't manage to take any pictures-- but we shared some great laughs over bridal mad libs). A nice bonus? Maryann brought boxes so that everyone could take home a few of the sweet treats she had baked. At one point a line even formed! I think everyone felt showered with a little love yesterday.
And here's the whole group! So many beautiful women celebrating our beautiful bride. Now, not to brag, but my Grandma Bev told me that this was the best shower that she's ever been to in her life. (Ok, that was very much a brag). But that meant so much for me to hear! I really did have so much fun putting all the little details together with my mom and Maryann and making sure it would be a day for Kelly to remember.
After everyone left, Kelly, my mom, and Kelly's bridesmaid Brianne and I went to explore one of the indoor conservatories. Kelly said, on more than one occasion, that she would happily dwell there. One day she'll have her own greenhouse. For now, she'll have the memories of Kelly's Garden Party!
Love you, Kel!!