Cupcakes & Cocktails 40th Birthday Bash

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If you follow us on Instagram then you have already seen this party so sorry for the topic overload! As I mentioned last week, this weekend I hosted a really fun 40th birthday party for Terry {ya’ll remember her as she blogged with us the first 3 years our site was around, there is more in our whole blog background/how we started story HERE. } She is such a special friend, and this birthday is pretty monumental one so we had to make sure to mark it by hosting a really great event!

You all also probably remember that Terry is a event planner, so planning a party for a professional party planner is a bit, well, intimidating! We let her decide how she wanted to celebrate her day and she opted for an intimate “Girls Night Out”, and my co-hostess and I {our dear friend Trinity–see her HERE and HERE} chose a “Cupcakes & Cocktails” theme. We found this darling Kate Spade invite from Paperless Post which started things off perfectly.

canvas copy2
While the party plan came together perfectly, and it was truly a wonderful event, this was one party where Mother Nature had her way with us. Looking back it made it more memorable, but the weather literally wrecked havoc on our “perfect” party plan. Said plan was to host the party on my deck, complete with a lighted tent, a black and white themed conversation area {I’ll re-stage to show that soon} and a decorated buffet table for the food. After much debate all afternoon, with only a 100% chance of rain and storms looming {thank you Tropical Storm Bill!} we made the last-minute call to hold everything inside my house, scrap the tent and the outdoor seating and completely restage the whole event. Flexibility is not one of my strengths once I have a plan in mind, and I’ll be honest it was tough to let the vision of the perfect tented party go, but what choice did we have?


My husband graciously helped us frantically move all the furniture out of our Breakfast Room and set up the buffet table inside. We used our kitchen table as a bar {pretty hastily set up thanks to the prep time we lost in the whole inside/outside debate} and moved some chairs in for extra seating.

party bar
party lemonade
Moving inside was by far the right idea. By the time the party began, the storm was in full-force in our area. As the guests literally blew into the front door, tornado alerts were blaring on phones and the TV and the air outside became an unworldly green color, so the first part of the party was spent toasting Terry as we cowered for safety in our basement, that part was definitely memorable!

party candid copy

After awhile things calmed down and we were able to return upstairs, but I certainly won’t forget that part of the evening {note to self: have kids clean up basement prior to party next time, it was not in guest-ready shape! *major cringe*}.


but first champagne post
I will return later this week with a party menu post about the food and the amazing drink we concocted for the event, but here’s a bit about the decor. It’s probably no surprise that I like the decorating more then any other part of party prep. Unfortunately we lost so much time due to the weather issue, I didn’t get to “tweak” things to my usual liking but I am sure nobody really noticed.

happy birthday sign
I quickly designed this poster for Terry and printed it at Staples {for $2–just ask for an “engineering print”} and ordered the “Champagne” printable via ETSY here . I just framed the prints in some inexpensive frames from IKEA.

You can see this table I made here, I use it as a buffet for parties and my kids use it in the basement for art projects when we don’t have events going on. I had purchased the black and white balloons eons ago {via Oriental Trading} for Terry’s baby shower and they didn’t come in time for that party, so I unearthed them to use for this and they were just perfect. The crystal cupcake stands came from HomeGoods several years ago.



Despite the weather, it was truly a great party. The guests took it all in stride and the smaller turnout {again due to the terrible weather} created a more intimate event with such a lovely group of women. I loved every minute of it and was thrilled to honor Terry’s journey “over the hill” with this celebration. I’ll be back with the party menu in the next few days–it was definitely the easy part of this event.

On an random note–our frantic move everything out of the breakfast room led us to create a new seating area up against the knee-wall in our kitchen, and area I have struggled to find furniture for and has long been just empty. We love the new chairs here, what do you think?

new furniture arrangement

Stay tuned, I’ll be back with Part 2 about this party later in the week. Have a great day!


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  1. I hear ya about the weather. While we didn’t have tornado warnings Saturday during baby girl’s graduation party the skies opened up numerous times. Long enough to make things quite steamy. So glad I planned to have most things indoors. Nothing like 30 people in one’s kitchen!! LOL But, while I worried…everyone else had a wonderful time and could have cared less. I am however using it as leverage down the road to convince the hubs that taking down the wall between the kitchen and the not so used dining room would be a good thing 😉

  2. Happy Birthday Terry!! Loved reading this post. Amy, you are so talented and always have the perfect touch, even if your perfect plan gets curved, it’s still perfectly perfect! Well done!! Can’t wait to read the menu 🙂

  3. What a beautiful party you created for Terry….and even when the weather put a little damper on the party, there still was fun had by all….Love the chairs and chest against the knee wall….Happy 40h to Terry!

  4. Your party is so cute! Love all the decor – that sucks about the weather. Funny story I recently hosted a dinner party for my big 30th and the same thing happened. I had the whole plan perfectly laid out in my head and mother nature was not so forgiving. I know where you are coming from – but your party was beautiful and memorable none the less!

  5. I so understand about the weather! We almost washed away here during the month of May. I’m so glad you were able to continue the party and a belated Happy Birthday to Terry! Your decor is beautiful, as usual and I love all the black and white.

    Now I need to find the post with the menu! 🙂


  6. Thank you Amy for a lovely party! It was the perfect evening, storm and all. You sure know how to make a girl feel special. Loving my ne book– it is the best! Xoxo

    Ps- thanks for all the birthday wishes!!!

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