Party Time

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And so it begins… the #TeamRAOP girls are taking over! Johanna enlisted the help of Mari to put together the ultimate PJ Pizza party, and they totally aced it. I’ve been trying to eat as plant-based as possible, so I handed off this particular pizza challenge to our resident junk food queens, and they didn’t disappoint! Here’s what Mari had to say about the mini party:

There are few things better than thin-crust pizza straight out of the oven. That’s why when Dr. Oetker Ristorante offered to send us five pizzas, we jumped at the chance to host a Pastel Pizza PJ Party, complete with our very own pastel pizza party banner.

Admittedly, I had my doubts about store-bought pizza (OK, I’m a pizza snob), but one bite of Spinach & Provolone changed my mind.

This stuff is seriously delicious and it was surprisingly easy to get through all of the pizzas in one sitting (oops). Could it be the thin crust? The legit gourmet toppings? The fact that macarons, chocolate covered pretzels and gummy bears were waiting patiently to be eaten for dessert? Probably a combo of all those things.

To wash it all down, the most perfect pizza pairing cocktails- white wine spritzers with frozen strawberries!

Want to have a #DrOPizzaParty of your very own? Scroll to the bottom of the post to create your own Pastel Pizza Party banner!

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Fold a piece of large-medium size paper in half vertically so it’s long and skinny. I used a piece that was 18″ x 20″.

Using a ruler and a pencil, draw a line that connects the bottom corner of the paper to the fold. Measure along open bottom how big you’d like your banner flags to be. I used 5 inches. Mark your spot and draw another line connecting back to the fold so you make an equilateral triangle. Repeat this step over and over until you have enough flags.

Choose 3 or more colours of paint and a small flat bristle paint brush. First make a broad sweeping motion across the wide part of your triangle for the ‘crust’ then hold your paint brush straight up and down with a fair amount of paint on it. Keeping it in one position rotate it around in a circle – practice makes perfect!

When your pizza flags are dry use a tacky liquid glue to adhere them equal distances apart on a ribbon. Wait for everything to dry and hang it up for your next Pastel Pizza PJ Party!

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This post was sponsored, but all opinions are my own. To inquire about sponsored posts, please email jess@shineinfluencers.com

Party Time

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There’s something so enchanted about a good garden party. For one, they can really only be successful on those perfect days of the year that are neither too hot nor too cold. They also require a beautiful outdoor space, which can be quite hard to come by in the city, and there’s the bug issue to contend with…

But then sometimes, as if by magic, it just all comes together.

Sophie, my dear friend from Kitten and the Bear, and I have been talking about styling a pastel garden party shoot in her secret Parkdale garden for what seems like years. The ideas constantly morphed, but the general feel always stayed the same: there would be treats, there would be tea, and there would be flowers in every corner.

When we finally settled upon a date, all the details just fell into place from there. After much discussion we decided on brunch as our meal time of choice, and quickly joined forces with Chambord to craft some jam-infused breakfast cocktails (recipe here). Sophie got to work dreaming up simple yet decadent tea sandwiches (recipe here), and Delysees offered to provide the dreamiest sweet treats in the land for our spread. Last but not least, Amira (aka one of our favourite local flower queens) from Coriander Girl offered her green thumb, filling the space with blooms and plants on every possible surface.

The final result was full tilt Marie-Antoinette garden party perfection. There were sparkling golden eclairs, there were tiny “jam window” and lavender cucumber sandwiches, and there were endless sparkling Chambord cocktails. We hung had dyed baby blue muslin over the table to help with sunburns and melting desserts, and draped the same fabric over our dessert table to pull the scene together. By the time the models finally poured in, dressed to the nines in lace and flower crowns, the whole space had filled with a glittering energy – warm, bright, and so quintessentially summer.

What are you waiting for? Come celebrate with us!

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Brown-Forman Corporation, Louisville, KY, Black Raspberry 16.5%, 21+

Styling and concept by Alyssa Garrison of RAOP
Photos by Bobbyand Johanna
Savoury creations by Sophie of Kitten and the Bear
Sweet treats by Delysees
Florals and greenery by Amira of Coriander Girl
A special thanks to our models Meghan, Sasha, Amanda, Aneta, & Mari

Originally posted by Hooray Magazine

Dear DiaryParty Time

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It’s scary how fast time is flying lately, don’t you think? Can whoever is holding down the fast forward button ~please~ let go and give us all a break already?!

This past week was the week of my 26th Birthday, and oh boy did it sneak up on me in pretty much every way. I’m the kind of person that plans my birthday months in advance, obsessing over every detail and worrying about every tiny thing that could potentially go wrong. I know it sounds silly, but I literally have nightmares about forgetting my birthday is coming up! I don’t have anything to say for myself, I’ve just always been a very extreme birthday princess.

2016 has been a crazy complicated year for me with a lot of hard work, a lot of emotional ups and downs, and a few challenges I wasn’t sure I could get past. In short, it was weird… so weird! Is this what being an adult feels like – everything just getting so intense and confusing and heavy? I’ve always prided myself on following my heart and living spontaneously, but recently I feel like every decision I make has such a serious impact on the rest of my life. In all honesty, it’s all very terrifying, and if you’d asked me a couple months ago I probably would’ve said I didn’t even plan on celebrating my birthday this year.

Luckily, I have some truly amazing people around me, and in the end I had one of the best birthdays ever (despite my crippling fear of getting older). The amazing team at Nordstrom invited Josh and I to be their guests at Dinner en Blanc, which just happened to be on the evening of my actual birthday. Perfect, right? But wait, there’s more! Revolve sent me the most perfect long white silk dress for the event, and I even found the perfect white fluffy shoes on sale! Very Carrie Bradshaw.

My birthday day itself ended up being a lot more relaxed than usual – Josh took the day off and we just hung around eating brunch and shopping for fresh blooms at the Avenue Rd. flower shops. It may not have been the over the top birthday of my dreams, but it was honestly so nice to have a day to slow down for once! Plus it was topped off with a ride in a vintage rolls royce and the most amazing outdoor dinner thanks to Nordstrom, so I really can’t complain.

But the second day of celebration (yes, there are always at least two) was truly the magical, glittering cherry on top. Miss Thing’s (aka my favourite restaurant in Toronto, hands down) hosted me and a small group of my nearest and dearest for a dinner I can only describe as epic. There was a bottle of pink bubbly, there was a freshly shucked oysters and there was a family-style spread of the best tropical flavours you can dream of. Oh, let’s not forget the crazy pretty cocktail served in a hollowed out watermelon! With each new round of service we were even more in awe, and though we were thoroughly stuffed we ate almost every bite of every plate (including the unreal dessert- you simply have to try the chocolate banana mousse!)

Though we were barely able to get home after all the food, dinner was followed by a party in the park that included a shocking number of wonderful unicorn people, and not one but two vegan cakes from Sorelle & co.

Though getting older came with a lot of pressure and intense feels this year, it also came with a lot of magical moments and the most amazing supportive family of friends that a girl could ask for. Even if I’m anxious about age, I don’t think I’ll be giving up on enchanted birthday celebrations anytime soon!

A special thanks to Miss Thing’s, Nordstrom and Sorelle & co. for making my birthday so sparkly!

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Get CreativeParty Time

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They say “April showers bring May flowers” but we think showers, flowers and soirées in general should be in abundance always!

Paige and I dreamed up this peachy party bar shoot with the idea that anyone could add one (or all three) of these simple DIY spreads to their bridal shower, baby shower, or summer party setup. They’re the perfect way to add some colour to your party, whatever you’re celebrating! All you need is a lacy tablecloth, fresh flowers, and a few really simple, easy to find props.

Here’s how we created our three Summer Soirée Bars:

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One // DIY Flower Bar

Who doesn’t like to leave an event with a handful of beautiful fresh flowers? This bar instantly adds a fun DIY element to your party that anyone can do with ease, and it will make your celebration smell extra sweet to boot!

To stock this “bar” you’ll need:

A variety of fresh cut flowers
Multiple pairs of scissors
Pre-cut ribbon
Craft paper squares (we used tissue, but either works!)
Pretty jars of water
Fresh flowers of course! Pre-cut stems to a similar strength to save guests time and save mess

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Two // DIY Mimosa Bar

Throwing a brunch or lunchtime gathering? A mimosa bar is a great ice breaker (no pun intended), and with the right juice choices it can really add some fun pops of colour to your decor. Don’t forget to get creative with garnishes and add-ins!

To stock this “bar” you’ll need:

3 types of juice (we used Guava, Peach & Orange)
Bubbles!
A variety of fruits, citrus and herbs as garnish (we recommend mint, thyme, rosemary, grapefruit, berries, edible flowers etc)
Floral water or fun syrups (optional)
Paper Straws

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Bar Three // DIY Treat Box Bar

If you’re the baking type we invite you to get creative in the kitchen whipping up some specialty treats for your guests to snack on or take home to enjoy later. If you don’t consider yourself to be culinarily talented, don’t fret- we just placed a special order with Petit Nuage and cut up some fresh organic fruit instead!

To stock this “bar” you’ll need:

Sweet treats (we picked up ours from Petit Nuage, a lovely little shop in Toronto)
Treat boxes (ask the shop for extra, or pick up your own from a craft shop)
Fresh Fruit
Ribbons and tags to label your treats

Originally published on Hooray Magazine’s blog here.

Dear DiaryParty Time

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And just like that, three years have flown by since I decided my world needed to get a lot more colourful. Random Acts of Pastel was never meant to be a business powerhouse or a super brand – it has always been about fun, happiness, and love. Over the past three years the world I exist within has changed drastically in almost every way imaginable, but my baseline stays the same. I do what I love, because I love to do it, and my main goal isn’t to sell you guys things or create awesome advertising – it’s to make as many people as I can smile every single day. I hope that message hasn’t been lost in translation, and I thank each and every one of you for supporting me and following along as RAOP grows from a funny idea to a dreamy lifestyle. Without you, I wouldn’t be here, and I am so incredibly grateful to have the privilege to do what I do.

Every year team RAOP celebrates with a cake. Year one I was the only “staff”, so I made little mini ombre layer cakes. Year two Johanna had come aboard to start helping out, so we loaded up on donuts and made a donut cake (which we later devoured between the two of us!). This year the RAOP family has grown even more to include Jo as my right hand, our new intern Olivia, our awesome agency Shine Influencers, plus endless clients, friends, and helpers (including my bf Josh, who I’ve proclaimed head of video and tech support) who all come together to make this sparkly dream world of mine a reality. The conclusion? We needed a much bigger cake!

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Luckily Marble Slab came to the rescue just in time for our long weekend + Pride weekend third birthday. We have a lot to celebrate today, so we loaded up a mint chocolate chip heart-shaped cake with sprinkles and fizzy cotton candy bits for the occasion. We figured there was no better time than this epic day filled with reasons to party to share our #MarbleSlabMoments– and guess what? Even though it’s our birthday, we have a sweet gift for you too!

I’m giving away three $25 gift cards from @marbleslabcan on Instagram! Share a photo of a special moment you love to celebrate in life on Instagram and tag #marbleslabmoments by July 10th 2016 to be entered to win!