Bridal Shower Celebration with Dessert Table

On this throwback Thursday, I'm revisiting an event that took place only a short time ago.  Last Sunday, my dear friend Allison Murtha celebrated her bridal shower in Sewickly, Pennsylvania at the Blueberry Hill Activities Center.

Allie and I met during college.  (Go DUKES!)  Although we didn't really become friends until our senior year, our bond forged fast and strong.  She's probably the kindest, most genuine person I've ever met.  We've stayed close through the years and, even though there's distance between us, I know she's always there for me.

I volunteered to create and style the dessert table for her shower.  I collaborated with her sisters to create a cute, girly table with lace, fresh flowers, pearls, and tea cups.  Today, I'm going to share my recipes and secrets for baking and styling this table.

For the Styling
As far as styling items, I bought most of my adorable items at Homegoods and the Christmas Tree Shops.  The girl has to have a budget and appreciate a bargain!  Homegoods (at least mine) gets new shipments in three times per week, so there's always something new.  However, if you fall in love with something, be sure to buy it that day; you may never see it again!  CTS stores are the same way.  

The two-tiered gold trays with the white plates each came from CTS, all for under $15.  The adorable striped baking cups for the cupcakes also came from there.  The pink cake stand and some of the other trays came from Homegoods.  Some were gifts from friends, while my mom contributed some of her own platters.

I wanted to keep with a ultra-girly tea party theme, but grown up.  I used Pinterest and Kate Spade as my inspirations.  I loved the gold embellishments on the trays, vases, and baking cups.  To tie in a more girly theme, I made sure there were plenty of pastels and delicate flowers.  I could not have been happier with the outcome!

For the Baking
First and foremost, I must thank my mom and dear friend Katie for their baking assistance.  It was hard to rein me in!  I had so many ideas at first, but I had to narrow them down for practicality reasons, as well as for my own sanity.

This was my first official/unofficial catering gig.  I wanted to make sure everything was perfect.  Allie's sisters expected about 60 people at the shower, so I knew I couldn't let them down.  Here's what the dessert menu looked like at her shower:

a small centerpiece cake
almond macarons
sugar cookies
dipped rice krispie treats
chocolate cupcakes with vanilla icing

Centerpiece Cake
For the cake layers, I used my Easy Amaretto Pound Cake recipe.  It tastes springy and sweet.  Because I wanted to make a "naked" cake, I thought that the outer layers would look good exposed to the world.  I used some plain vanilla buttercream to frost the layers and scraped them cleanly.  Next, I dusted some fresh rosemary with powdered sugar and lined them around the cake stand.

Almond Macarons
These macarons are the most basic flavor you can make.  I victoriously made some vegan macarons with chocolate and amaretto, but you can swap out the cocoa powder for some additional powdered sugar.  This will give you the lighter color.

Sugar Cookies
It seems like it's not a party without sugar cookies.  Using a similar method to my sugar lace, I used dollops of the royal icing to create "brooches" with pearls and sprinkles - and I did this a week ahead!  I used Diane's method to ice the cookies and I loved it!  It's fast, easy, and saved me loads of time.

Dipped Rice Krispie Treats
This recipe's kind of a no-brainer.  If you're trying to veganize it, simply sub out the butter for vegan butter and use vegan marshmallows.  For the dipping, I used my Petit Four glaze.  I topped each krispie with either sugar pearls or edible rose buds.  I loved the way they looked, but the roses are certainly an acquired taste :-)

Chocolate Cupcakes with Vanilla Icing
My favorite cupcakes!  I used my chocolate cake recipe and filled each cupcake liner up halfway.  After whipping up a batch of my vegan buttercream, I used my 1M Wilton icing tip to make some multi-colored rose swirls.

Overall, the bridal shower was a success.  Allie's face lit up with every person she greeted and with every gift that she opened.  She and Joe will be very happy together - I absolutely know it!