photos by Jared Smith
I’m officially SO late to this recap party, it’s not even funny. We actually styled a Kentucky Derby event at our favorite local cocktail bar, Julep, and it was quite an event! Since the Kentucky Derby is long gone by now, we’ll just call this inspiration for a Southern garden party now instead, okay? I hope you don’t judge me already, I swear it will be good!
We were actually planning the decor for this event while we were galavanting through California and also coming home to back to back workshops, with this garden party landing right in the middle, so we enlisted the help of one of our favorite local party planners, Meredith of Cake & Confetti to help us with the details! Meredith is awesome, and it just so happens that all kinds of sweet and pretty things pop up when you Google her company name, so you’re welcome in advance for endless hours of fun with that.
Before you go, let’s talk through the party details!…
Alba, the owner and all around cocktail rockstar of Julep, did all of the coordinating and hosting for the event itself, we just added our little touch for the styling. One of those things included partnering with Hendrick’s Gin to create this awesome vintage car vignette.
The only thing that could make this sweet little vignette better is a stud like Jared in all of his Southern bow-tie glory standing in front of it (see what I did there?).
Since mint juleps are the name of the game when it comes to The Kentucky Derby, we decorated mini Julep carts with mint green vinyls, flower arrangements by Maxit Flower Design, and striped napkins from Meri Meri.
We partnered with Ikea Houston for the “lawn” furniture and striped umbrellas, and it totally made the space as far as the garden party aspect goes. Of course there would be no lawn if it wasn’t for Jared, Meredith, and I doing hard labor to lay down astro turf OURSELVES in the parking lot where the event was being held. What in the world was I thinking we I decided we needed astro turf?!
Admittedly, it made everything come together, but holy crap were we sweating like farm animals that day! I know what you must be thinking, I have a way with words when it comes to hard labor descriptions, and that would be correct…
To add color to the space, we spray painted paper parasols from Save-On-Crafts to line the fence with to create a focal point behind hay barrel seating.
Meredith also painted a regular corn hole to match the color scheme and added vinyl decals with the event hashtag, that we paired with colored bean bags from Amazon.
We were also lucky enough to snag an awesome paper flower and boxwood backdrop for photo-ops made by Sarah from Blome’s Paperie, and used the same boxwood squares (which we got from here) for creating a cool pattern effect on the plain fence behind it.
I designed the table centerpieces to look like derby tickets with the event hashtag and social handles info, and place them in these frames, which was on every table minus the budget seating we made using mismatched yards of fabric over barrels of hay, that also doubled as a way to section off areas of the event.
All in all I absolutely loved the way everything came together, and working with Meredith as an extra set of creative hands was a total saving grace! I don’t know if laying astro turf in a parking lot is in my near future again, but regardless I was super pumped to get to work on a fun local event to get outside of my online box!
What’s one of the most elaborate events you’ve ever thrown? I honestly think it’s in my blood to go big, going home has never been an option for me, ha!
Sources- florals by Maxit Flower Design // paper parasols, table frames, faux boxwood for the backdrop, silver flower vases, easels, and urn vases from Save-On-Crafts // patterned julep napkins from Meri Meri // vinyl letter decals cut using a Cricut on mint green vinyl // standing umbrellas and patio furniture by Ikea Houston // photography by Jared Smith // event design by Sugar & Cloth and Cake & Confetti // paper flower backdrop by Blome’s Paperie // event location at Julep