If there’s something I love, it’s things that are adorably curated. Themed parties and events are my thing. I enjoy coming up with ideas, searching for inspo, sourcing the perfect pieces, and watching it all come together. Truth be told, I don’t actually love executing these events as much. I tend to get a bit stressed out attempting to pull it off. So when my friend Crystal of Method Events offered to help me make CoaBella come to life, I couldn’t have been happier!!
I think it was while I was pregnant with Bella Bean and planning her shower that the Coachella/ CoaBella theme first popped into my head. I knew it would be the most adorable theme but thought I would save it for the right time. Her shower was a blush pink ‘Babes who Brunch’ theme, 1st birthday Cinqo de Mayo, and 2nd birthday unicorns. While Bella loooooves princesses right now, she’ s been to a lot of pretty princess parties lately. She also is into music, singing, dancing, and performing, so I knew CoaBella would be her thing this year. Crystal and I got planning this music festival about 2 months ago, to ensure it didn’t turn into the Fyre Festival :P
For the past 3 years, the week of Bella’s birthday has been hot- high 20’s and even 30 degrees the day she was born! I crossed my fingers our good luck would continue and began planning for another backyard bash. We have a good size yard, so we started mapping things out.
I chose a colour pallet of blush pink, neutrals, and greenery (something totally different than what I usually go for ;). I found some beautiful inspiration pictures on Pinterest, of long pallet tables with floor seating, rugs, and toss cushions. I thought this would be the perfect focal point for the party. Of course no beautiful table is complete without a centre piece so I got connected with Janine from Florence and Flora to design a gorgeous floral table runner and fresh flowers for the party. In an effort to be more sustainable, I opted to source reusable plastic plates, cups, and cutlery from Re-play Recycled Tableware, which is made of recycled materials and can be kept and reused year after year at birthday parties- not to mention everyday, too! The blush pink and white tableware fit the colour pallet perfectly.
Along with Method Events, Crystal runs a balloon business and offered to design a balloon arch for the food table, as well as provide the large gold foil helium letter balloons to spell out C-O-A-B-E-L-L-A as a statement at the party.
From there, we started sourcing eats for the guests. We went for ‘easy’ carnival themed finger foods; popcorn, fresh baked pretzels by Wetzel’s, corndogs, custom mini donuts by The Dapper Doughnut, and of course the sweet staples too- hand decorated cookies by Annie Wang, cupcakes, and a beautiful tiered macrame birthday cake!
The next thing to tackle was activities to keep a gang of toddlers occupied! It was actually my husband’s idea to build a stage for the kids to ‘perform’ on. And I said “YAS HUNNY!” He constructed it out of a few pallets and a plywood cover, and it coordinated well with the dining table. To complete this station, we just needed a sound system, microphone, all of the Disney tunes, and some instruments. I rented a crate of assorted instruments for the party guests to perform with from my friends at We Move SK (where we take our music classes) and they were a hit!
When the brood of kids were exhausted from wowing the crowds with their singing and dancing, we also planned for a floral crown making station and temporary tattoo station. I spent about $30 at Dollarama picking up a variety of faux flowers, greenery, scissors, wire cutters, wire, and floral tape. An easy and cute station to build. And the tattoo station was even easier; a couple pages of metallic tribal tattoos, a sponge, and water- viola! Your kids can start planning their future sleeves ;)
A final activity fun for both mommys and minis was a braid bar. We thought it would be cool for guests to get their hair braided and styled festival style and I’m so glad Chelsey from Passions Beauty Studio was into the idea! I didn’t find it necessary to ‘over plan’ things for the kids to do, because from experience, kids will do what they want, which usually involves running around and chasing each other (spoiler- I was right).
So the week before the party, everything was planned, all the details were falling into place… except for one thing… the weather forecast. My hopes of having a backyard party were slowly diminishing. Crystal and I began brainstorming backup locations and The Barn at Wind’s Edge came up. I went to check out the new venue, which is located just a few minutes out of Saskatoon… and OH MY GOSH!!! Can I just say, I’m SO glad the weather did not cooperate. This venue is what dreams are made of: high ceilings, chandeliers, white walls, clean lines, wood beams… the list goes on. The Barn is the perfect mix of glam and rustic and a gorgeous venue for any event; weddings, birthday parties, corporate events… anything really! I was ecstatic when the team at The Barn were available to host CoaBella in the chapel room! It suited the party and theme so well. Once the location was secure, I was relieved and even more excited for the party!
On the day of Bella’s birthday party, Crystal helped me relax and enjoy the morning, by doing all of those last minute things that can’t be done until right before- like picking up the mini donuts from The Dapper Doughnut, the cookies by Annie Wang, and the Wetzel’s Pretzels. Seriously so helpful! The Method Events team also arrived at The Barn at Wind’s Edge early to set up the entire event; tablescape, food, drinks, backdrops, balloons, and the kid’s activities. Normally I have a hard time letting go and not being in control (as I’m sure my husband will tell you ;) but I trust Crystal 100% and knew I had nothing to worry about.
Janine from Florence and Floral also made things run smoothly by arriving early and setting up the beautiful florals- she knocked them out of the park! The table runner, flowers on the macrame archway, and teepee were one of my favourite details of the party.
Another detail that elevated CoaBella were the freehand calligraphy signs by Yza. She created the Welcome chalkboard sign, as well as the Festival Eats and Sweet Treats, Tat it Up, and Flowers in her Hair signage. A simple party detail that often is overlooked, but definitely shouldn’t be!
Crystal created a ‘welcome' area and photo op spot for guests as they arrive. The faux greenery backdrop was provided by Saskatoon Chic, and is available for rent. Each child attending the party got to find a ‘festival pass’ with their name on it as they entered the party. Crystal’s teepee was the perfect spot for guests to drop their cards and gifts.
Another cute photo op was courtesy of Little Loop Shop’s gorgeous macrame backdrop. Krista, the owner of LLS, is actually a friend of mine from high school and early in the planning process, I knew we had to incorporate one of her macrame masterpieces to complete the party. It made the perfect archway while Chelsey from Passions made boho hair dreams coming true using her hairstyling skills and Prime Hair Brand products. The guests at the party also made good use of the macrame piece as another photo spot!
The food was all delicious, and the guests both big and small devoured the soft baked Wetzel’s Pretzel bites, the fresh made custom mini donuts by The Dapper Doughnut in Stonebridge, and of course the almost too pretty to eat CoaBella cookies by Annie Wang. The stunning two-tier macrame cake was designed by my sweet mother-in-law who is one of the most talented bakers I know! Most of the cake got eaten because it’s hard to have just one piece. It’s that good.
There were only two small bumps in the road when it came time to set up the food table. The new drink dispenser I purchased for the party was apparently defective and began leaking as soon as it was filled. Luckily The Barn at Wind’s Edge had a drink dispenser on hand that we used instead. The other roadblock was the popcorn machine someone had lent me would not pop the kernels! Cue the panic. Luckily Crystal was thinking on her feet and we sent my friend’s husband to Costco to pick up some Boom Chicka Pop popcorn. We were still able to make a cute display with the popcorn maker, popcorn, and popcorn boxes. And it tasted just as good.
Besides those minor blips, the party went off without a hitch! It was a huge success. Bella had so much fun with her friends, singing, dancing, running around, and eating cake. I don’t know how we will ever top this party so I won’t even begin to try. I also don’t think I’ll be able to plan another event without Method Events, so I won’t try that either :)
A big thank you to all our friends and family who came out to celebrate our special little girl turning THREE! And a huge thank you to __everyone who made CoaBella come to life:
Event Planner- Crystal from Method Events
Venue- The Barn at Wind’s Edge
Florals- Janine from Florence and Flora
Videography- Garrett from King Rose Visuals
Photography- Desiree Martin Photography
Macrame Backdrop- Little Loop Shop
Greenery Backdrop Wall- Saskatoon Chic
Cookies- Annie Wang
Donuts- The Dapper Doughnut Stonebridge
Pretzel Bites- Wetzel’s Pretzels
Signage- Calligraphy by Yza
Tableware- Re-play Recycled Tableware
Musical Instruments- We Move SK