Simple Summer Party Decor :: For the Party I’ve Been Dreaming of…

yay tuesday

Saturday we hosted a party to celebrate my sister’s book release. This is huge to me, and I’ll tell you why in a minute.

Emily invited anyone who wanted to come to throw their name in the ‘hat’ for a free ticket, 50ish people were randomly chosen and they could each bring a guest. We had about 120 people come out–some flew or droveĀ  from Texas, Michigan, Indiana, Florida–and some from just one town over. There was a food truck and a popsicle cart and music–I’ll share all that in another post, but for now I thought it would be fun to see some detail shots of the simple decor and setting for the party and enjoy the fact that a dream we had four years ago has come true.


In the photo above a $10 mum from Costco, white Christmas lights wrapped on branches, a second-hand easel with a chalkboard (I use this tape to write words), a planter from my yard and a piece of furniture go a long way to make the barn entry feel special. I like to shop the property for large impactful things.


Look at these lovely tassels that Megan made. If you come to an event here, Megan is the one I bring in to boss me around-we call her my assistant but really, often I need her to tell me what to do.


We just tied the tassels to a branch so they became the backdrop for the bench–where Emily sat and signed books. If you want instructions on how to make tassels, we’ve got all sorts of inspiring ideas and methods that you have access to with your nesting place subscription (free of course–sign up here) if you already are subscribed & get these posts in your inbox, then simply login here to download the free printables & learn how to make all sorts of tassels.

at the bench

Did I mention we had a great time?

painted pineapple

One of my planters was looking kind of weak, so I grabbed a few pineapples and spray painted them gold. They are looking a little worn after the weekend, but they added some unexpected umph to this display.

white flags

And of course, I’ll continue to use my little white flags (ripped of sheets hot glued to string) until they beg for mercy.

chalk markers

My new favorite thing are these NON-neon, NON-elementary school colored chalk markers! I’ve loved chalk markers for years, but usually I only use white. But now, these muted colors make me want to write on every window, door and chalk board.

chalk markers

This party was such fun and had a really special meaning for me.

Four years ago Emily’s first book came out and we celebrated by having a big party at my house–remember?!

book party 2011

It was wonderful and FULL of charming women who we didn’t have the time or space to actually have a conversation with. When that first party was over, Emily and I felt like we hosted this weird thing where people were just in one huge line–we were inside my house with a ton of people so there was no place to sit and just hang out, there wasn’t room to relax, to listen to music, to connect. It was bittersweet.

That first party is what made us start wondering if there was a gathering space we could have that would be better suited for actual real connection. Even though Emily and I can’t actually connect with each person when there are over one hundred people–we wanted a place where everyone had the space to connect with each other.


So when her last book came out we rented a barn--but we had already purchased this property and were working on getting our own barn ready for future gatherings…

…and now we’ve come full circle.



When we first had this dream, Chad and I never ever thought we would be the ones with the property. We were paying off an overwhelming amount of debt and the thought of owning our own home, much less one with land a place for people to come seemed close to impossible. Four years later, here we are. It’s far from perfect. But it doesn’t matter–actually, it’s better that way.


The SimplyTuesdayParty Hashtag

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