I’ve been wanting to start a blog for like EVER. You would think blogging would be way more simpler than it is. However, it takes so much time, money and research. So four years later, I finally launched Shylah May.
To make it even more real, I decided to throw a blog launch party into the mix. If those couple of months weren’t crazy busy enough! Of course, it couldn’t be like any party either. I had to go balls to the walls ALL out.
The launch party was pure magic. It was filled with so much joy, happy tears, laughter and good people. I invited 20-25 of my closest friends who have inspired and motivated me to be who I am today. The most genuine and supportive babes that I’m so blessed and grateful to know. They represent ShylahMay.com. They are the ones who helped create this community.
&& now you all are apart of it, too!
So cheers to a successful blog launch party, a day I will never forget, and a start of something new.
I had never seen or heard of anyone having a blog launch party so I had to think outside of the box. I wanted the event to be picture-perfect. Everywhere you looked needed to be perfect for a photo opp. Give me a break, its a blogger event!! LOL – that’s what we do, we take pictures of E V E R Y T H I N G.
(In the invite, I even stated to “dress for the gram”…Instagram) I know… I know…
A lot of people asked me how I planned this event. It did kind of look like a wedding, and I may or may not have been looking at a lot of wedding inspo when I planned it. (Don’t be scared Trevor!!) So they were shocked when I told them I planned it without an event planner. I’m going to tell you all the details, secrets and event planning tricks to help YOU when planning your own event!
P L A N N I N G
Obviously I first resorted to Pinterest (every event planners BFF). I saw the “donut wall” trend there, and knew it would be a hit at the party. Who doesn’t love donuts?! (Ours were vegan, so that means they’re healthy…right? I’m kidding!) I also looked up wedding backdrops, table settings, and floral inspiration from Pinterest, too!
I used inspiration from Instagram of all the different brands (Create and Cultivate, Saje Wellness, Gathre, and Blissful Gatherings.) who host sit down brunches and/or dinner gatherings specifically for bloggers. I would screen shot their place settings, goodie bags, photo op areas or anything that I could use for inspo.
I sifted through all the inspiration I grabbed and found a common theme. I resonated with the more neutral colors – tans, whites, browns, dark green, and pops of silver and rose gold.
I started researching furniture rentals. (This is probably the most expensive thing!) I loved wood tables and benches and knew it would totally complete my whole look. I reached out to 3 or 4 rental companies, grabbed quotes for 20-25 people and compared prices.
G O O D I E B A G S
One of my favorite parts. The goodie bag is your last impression of your event. It has to fit your event’s theme and describe who you are and why you had the party. I packed the goodie bags full of treats from brands that I personally use, value and respect with all my heart.
I did this by reaching out to the brand via email. I found their emails from their website, usually under the contact page and reached out to Marketing or PR Manager. I simply told them who I was, what kind of event I was hosting and why I wanted to collaborate with their brand.
***Reach out to brands at least 1-2 months before your event.
My fam at Solti Juice were one of the first places I reached out to. They were so incredibly excited for my launch that they sponsored three growlers of organic cold pressed juice and gave a personal bottle to every attendee.
I also threw in a mini bottle of champagne for the girls and Kombucha beer for the boys because B A L A N C E!
D E C O R
When it came to the table setting, the dollar store became my best friend. I got the most gorgeous water and champagne glasses here and we found the most perfect white plates. It was a STEAL.
Another goodie was amazon. We got the burlap table runners, rose gold plastic utensils, mini mason jars for the yogurt bar, napkins and name card place holders at Amazon.
Luckily for us, my event landed a week after Black Friday. So yes I did Black Friday shopping for this event and babes it saved us lots of $$$ on decor. We went to Hobby Lobby for all of the candles, lanterns, and extra frills. We went to Target for some finishing touches. We also bought 3 packs of film for my Polaroid at Urban Outfitters while they were doing a buy 1 get 50% off everything deal for Black Friday. The Polaroid camera was so much fun. It was passed around to everyone and it was nice knowing we had so much film to play around with!
D E T A I L S M A T T E R
Menu + Name Cards: My mom and I tried to create our own menus and name cards on Microsoft and it just was NOT doing the trick. I last second bought a template for both the menu and name cards off Etsy. Oh my gosh, did it make a difference. It was just $5.00 extra to get a pre-made template and they came out so much cuter.
Donuts and Babe Cave Sign: I contacted my girl Briana ASAP when I thought of the idea for a Donut Sign. She is SO talented. You can find her here. Personally, I think the sign really made the donut wall so F**King cute.
T H E B A C K D R O P A N D D O N U T W A L L
I know what you’re thinking, how the hell did you build the backdrop and donut wall?! I didn’t. However, my Stepdad did! He’s amazing. I told him my vision, we went straight to Home Depot, bought the plywood, and went straight to work. After putting the pieces of plywood together, he stained it a dark brown and attached the macrame I bought from Etsy on to it with a wooden rod! He stood the backdrop up with wires and anchored it with large pieces of wood. He painted and put a frame around the donut wall and hung the donut wall up with wires. Quite the crafty guy.
F L O R A L S & G R E E N E R Y
This was SOOO last minute. I reached out to several florist to help execute my vision and they ALL wanted to charge me $500 :)))))…. like um no.
I reached out to my Aunt who is a licensed florist a week before the party. I knew this was going to be the thing that really made the party and I was so mad at myself for waiting last minute. I sent her all of my screenshots of all the ideas I had. She was such a lifesaver. We went straight to the Floral Trade Center and I picked out the greenery and white roses I wanted. It ended up only being $130 for the Eucalyptus and White Roses. Like get out.
The night before, my mom, Aunt and I all got together and handmade all of the garland. It was surprisingly (with her instruction) way easier than I thought! Save yourself some money and check out this tutorial here.
F O O D
The most important part of the brunch. I decided to create a three course brunch. Some people were vegan so I wanted to provide options for all.
Again, keeping Instagram in mind when people take photos of their plates. I wanted the food to be pretty, easy, healthy and delicious.
First course: We prepared the oranges before everyone go there. We sliced the oranges in half and then sectioned the insides so it was easy for everyone to scoop the orange out of its peel.
Second course: We prepared the yogurt in the mini mason jars ahead of time. My sister, Karly came up with the idea of pouring the yogurt in a plastic bag, snipping the corner of the bag, and squirting to yogurt into the jars to avoid creating a mess around the jar. It made the jars way more presentable then doing it any other way. I created a topping bar full of carob chips, granola, banana slices, blackberries, blueberries and almond
butter, so that everyone could personalize their parfaits to their own taste.
Third course: My parents and my Aunt (My workers LOL) served warmtoast and a half an avocado to everyone while we were seated chatting and cheering. We passed around Everything But Bagel Seasoning (to die for) and halved mini tomatoes in small bowls so everyone could personalize their avocado toast!
We served lots of champagne with a splash of Solti Juice in flavors Coconut, Charcoal SuperAde, Goji Strawberry SuperAde and Reishe Turmeric Superade (MY FAV) to the guests.
T H A N K Y O U
A huge shout out to my family whose help supports me no matter how crazy and wild my ideas can be, Sam and Karly for helping me set up and most importantly to my Aunt D for saving the party with her talent, love and green thumb! Thank you to Shelly Fingerlin for capturing the moment with your talent and camera!
Also, thank you Van De Vort for giving me so much confidence in my outfit. Literally obsessed with the set! I don’t know what I would have done with out you babes!