I recently threw a really fun bachelorette party for one of my close friends, Jenny, who’s wedding I’ll be celebrating this weekend. We spent the whole weekend celebrating: watching the Huskies win on Saturday and then we were up bright and early for brunch and an afternoon of wine tasting on Sunday. I had some pretty great ideas that I wanted to share with you, the internet and my readers, in case you’d like to use any of them for a wine tasting party of your own!
First, the decorations.
I had a few bottles of wine on hand (thank you, Wine Wednesdays) that I soaked in big bucket of agitated warm water and OxiClean for several hours. If you’re lucky, the labels will float right off (House Wine) and if you’re not, you’ll have to peel the label and adhesive off of the bottle. Beyond the soaking time, I wasted an old sponge and about an hour making sure the bottles were clean. I thought about spraying them with chalkboard paint and using chalk to write a special message. Instead, I saved a step and used a gold paint pen to write “Soon-to-be Mrs. Fazioli” on the bottles. It didn’t look like much during brunch, but once the sun went down, the bottles looked so great!
I also have these great candle holders from Crate and Barrel (I would like to share them, but they are apparently discontinued. Bummer.). The great thing about these candle holders is that they are totally customize-able, but they’re also really pretty plain. For this party, I took some of my leftover corks (thank you, Wine Wednesday), cut them into thirds with a serrated knife and voila! instant wine decor for FREE. I also kept some corks full and displayed them in an oversize wine glass. It helped add some height to the table.
Side note: I like to spend a few bucks every season to add some flair to the house by decorating these candle holders: sweethearts around Valentine’s Day, candy corn around Halloween, and cranberries and fake snow for the holidays.
Next, the treats!
When I asked the bride what she wanted for snacks that afternoon, she replied “cheese.” So, I had some flexibility. I put together these adorable gift boxes for the guests, complete with gummy bears, Ghirardelli chocolates, Hi-chews, anti-spill wine pourers and customized mini-bottles of wine.
For the mini bottles of wine, I used these wine stain images and Avery’s 5164 labels. I set up my design in InDesign, printed them and slapped them on the bottles. I used the wine stain images again and created the name tags for boxes, printed them on cardstock and cut them out with a punch. I attached them to the takeout boxes with some leftover silver elastic ribbon. Finally, I Googled “red wine glass” and found this image. I printed out a page of those on Avery’s 5293 labels. It was pretty easy to come up with some really nice customization for Jenny’s big day before the big day.
I also packed many cheese dishes for the bride: caprese skewers (tomato, fresh mozzerella and basil with balsamic vinegar on a toothpick), brie slices, Beecher’s Marco Polo cheese (a favorite of mine!) and a tray of cured meats. We busted them out at the second winery and they were all a huge hit! I also packed some pirates booty and additional wines for the bus. Delicious success.
Day of… We had quite the spread:
- Hashbrown and egg casserole from Allrecipes.com (a favorite of our group of friends)
- Tropical fruit salad with mangoes, pineapple and strawberries
- Bagels and cream cheese
- And…Mimosas! We enjoyed Cook’s champagne and tropical frozen juices
Next, we hopped on the party bus and headed to Woodinville. We tasted at Efeste (who was having a pizza release party!), Davenport Cellars, Robert Ramsay Cellars, Covington Cellars and Matthews Cellars. Phew. It was quite the day and we really enjoyed the wines!
Look at all those smiling faces!