24 Oct

Italian carnivale themed 40th birthday party | Photo by Brandi Welles Photographer | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=80766

You guys. This 40th birthday bash is F-U-N. (Just in time for the weekend!) Jen + Geoff love parties. Jen’s a cake baker who loves to come up with bigger and better ideas for Geoff’s birthday each year. But for her own 40th, her guy had a plan of his own: to throw a festive, intimate Venetian Carnivale themed bash inspired by their honeymoon to Italy (and particularly Venice) 13 years before. He got all the right people on board too – Mein Schatz Events to coordinate the epic event and Brandi Welles Photography to catch all the best moments.

Italian carnivale themed 40th birthday party | Photo by Brandi Welles Photographer | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=80766

Italian carnivale themed 40th birthday party | Photo by Brandi Welles Photographer | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=80766

Italian carnivale themed 40th birthday party | Photo by Brandi Welles Photographer | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=80766

A super gorgeous Malibu setting to set the tone…

Italian carnivale themed 40th birthday party | Photo by Brandi Welles Photographer | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=80766

Italian carnivale themed 40th birthday party | Photo by Brandi Welles Photographer | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=80766

Italian carnivale themed 40th birthday party | Photo by Brandi Welles Photographer | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=80766

Their specialty cocktail, Italian Bee Keeper: Bourbon, lemon, honey, Amaro Averna, Angostura Bitters

Italian carnivale themed 40th birthday party | Photo by Brandi Welles Photographer | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=80766

Italian carnivale themed 40th birthday party | Photo by Brandi Welles Photographer | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=80766

A singing gondolier and a flower-filled gondola, plus a Venetian stilt walker provided the entertainment. They really went all out!

Italian carnivale themed 40th birthday party | Photo by Brandi Welles Photographer | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=80766

Italian carnivale themed 40th birthday party | Photo by Brandi Welles Photographer | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=80766

Italian carnivale themed 40th birthday party | Photo by Brandi Welles Photographer | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=80766

Italian carnivale themed 40th birthday party | Photo by Brandi Welles Photographer | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=80766

Italian carnivale themed 40th birthday party | Photo by Brandi Welles Photographer | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=80766

Italian carnivale themed 40th birthday party | Photo by Brandi Welles Photographer | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=80766

They served lasagne cupcakes (uh, yum!), crostini, salamis, cheeses, and nuts, and a signature cocktail. Jen explains, We watched the sunset over the Malibu coast as we enjoyed wine and champagne and feasted on a choice of succulent prime rib or delicately prepared halibut. In lieu of party hats, Venetian masks were designed and handcrafted by VIVO Masks, of Venice, Italy. We put them on and mingled among the expansive grounds of the property.

Italian carnivale themed 40th birthday party | Photo by Brandi Welles Photographer | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=80766

Italian carnivale themed 40th birthday party | Photo by Brandi Welles Photographer | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=80766

Italian carnivale themed 40th birthday party | Photo by Brandi Welles Photographer | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=80766

Italian carnivale themed 40th birthday party | Photo by Brandi Welles Photographer | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=80766

Italian carnivale themed 40th birthday party | Photo by Brandi Welles Photographer | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=80766

Italian carnivale themed 40th birthday party | Photo by Brandi Welles Photographer | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=80766

Italian carnivale themed 40th birthday party | Photo by Brandi Welles Photographer | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=80766

Italian carnivale themed 40th birthday party | Photo by Brandi Welles Photographer | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=80766

Italian carnivale themed 40th birthday party | Photo by Brandi Welles Photographer | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=80766

A few more deets, c/o Mein Schatz Events: We knew we wanted to bring in some rich reds and dark moody blooms. So we took advantage of the season with some blood red peonies, chocolate cosmos, dahlias and garden roses… Each guest took home a Venetian mask and filled a time capsule of well wishes for Jen to open on her 50th.

Italian carnivale themed 40th birthday party | Photo by Brandi Welles Photographer | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=80766

Italian carnivale themed 40th birthday party | Photo by Brandi Welles Photographer | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=80766

Italian carnivale themed 40th birthday party | Photo by Brandi Welles Photographer | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=80766

Italian carnivale themed 40th birthday party | Photo by Brandi Welles Photographer | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=80766

Jen says, After our guests sang Happy Birthday, we enjoyed cake around the fire pit, reminiscing about the past and making predictions about my 50th!

Happy birthday, Jen! And kudos to Geoff + the team below for such a fabulous bash!

Photographer: Brandi Welles Photography / Venue: Malibu Residence provided by Universal Locations / Event Planners: Mein Schatz Events / Cake: Charm City Cakes West / Catering: Heirloom LA / Gondola: Gondola Getaway / Venetian Masks: VIVO Masks

 
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23 Oct

If fall is perfect for anything (besides entertaining, perfecting cold-weather cocktails, saying “I do”…etc etc), it’s got to be getting crafty. Whether you’re enamored by romantic fall décor, are hosting your next dinner party, or have a big event to put on, these garland ideas are sure to come in handy sooner or later. And they’re so, so easy too. Better to pin them now and be prepared!

Click through the slideshow at right and tell us, which will you be hanging this weekend?

 
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23 Oct

A guide to heirloom pumpkin varieties | Photo by Scott Clark | See more on 100layercake.com/blog

We are completely obsessed with pumpkins and winter squash this time of year. Who isn’t?! There are so many gorgeous shapes and sizes and subtle color differences. It takes loads of restraint to resist filling our houses with them in the fall.

On our way home from Palm Springs last week (we’ll be sharing more of this event later!), we stopped by the best pumpkin patch in Southern California and scooped up a bunch of our favorites to share with you.

Green heirloom pumpkin varieties | Photo by Scott Clark | See more on 100layercake.com/blog

White heirloom pumpkin varieties | Photo by Scott Clark | See more on 100layercake.com/blog

Pink heirloom pumpkin varieties | Photo by Scott Clark | See more on 100layercake.com/blog

Orange heirloom pumpkin varieties | Photo by Scott Clark | See more on 100layercake.com/blog

You can find lots of these at your local patch or even Trader Joe’s. For those of you in the LA area, we can’t recommend the Pumpkin Patch at Live Oak Canyon enough! On top of the amazing varieties of pumpkins they sell (and there are at least 50), their farm is full of activities for kids. Free during the week, $3 admission on the weekend.

And if you’re handy in the kitchen, don’t throw them out. They are as delicious as they are beautiful.

(Photography by Scott Clark Photo)

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