January 23, 2014

Hello Friends…

Filed under: Cake of the Week, General, My Inspirations — Kathryn @ 5:09 pm

It feels like a lifetime since I’ve sat down to write on this beautiful blog, Australia Entertains.  Busy doesn’t begin to describe the past few years.  With a book, The Party Book, out and about; Pink Frosting growing super-fast; and my beautiful family growing up; a move overseas and back; and, well, life in general…. I’ve been a little busy.

So, here I am back at the keyboard and super excited to bring more ideas from our customers, the team and around the world through this fun read.

The Party Book by Kathryn Porritt, image by Nikole Ramsay

The Party Book by Kathryn Porritt, image by Nikole Ramsay

So, I look forward to our little chats.  I’ve missed you!

Happy Celebrating!

Kathryn

June 28, 2011

Changes Afoot – What’s New at Australia Entertains

Filed under: General, My Inspirations — Kathryn @ 9:07 pm

The past few months have been dramatic.  There’s really no other word to describe it.  Personally, I have moved my family back to Australia following the devastating earthquake in Japan where we have been living for a couple of years while my husband is on a posting.  If that wasn’t enough, I’ve agreed to write a tome on celebrating and parties in Australia which I am thrilled to bits about.  Nights are spent locked away tapping at the keyboards, while days are spent busily preparing Pink Frosting for the wedding season ahead when all of our beautiful brides and grooms will walk down the aisle and make our warehouse team dispatch orders at a faster pace than a wedding bar 5 minutes before closing…

The biggest change is over at Australia’s number one online wedding and party shop, Pink Frosting.  We’ve rolled up our sleeves and made some improvements that we hope you will really enjoy.  We’ve added hundreds and hundreds of pages of fun and inspirational ideas for hosting and organising parties and weddings in our wedding and party planning pages, and we’ve added around 1000 new products to our party supplies range, giving us over 4000 unique and beautiful products to make your next celebration magical.  All in all, it’s not been a bad few month’s work.

Australia Entertains will return to being my baby where I get to share my thoughts and ideas with anyone who might be interested, while Pink Frosting will be the final resting place for all the fabulous party and wedding planning ideas in my head.  Both will coexist perfectly – because we’re simply wonderful at marriages at Pink Frosting.  Planning and executing beautiful marriages is what we do best of all.

I hope you love the changes.  I look forward to hearing from you either over at Pink Frosting, here at Australia Entertains, or at our very fun Facebook page where lots of our very talented customers share their ideas with one another.

Happy Celebrating!

Kathryn

February 25, 2011

Why I Love Pink Frosting

Filed under: General, My Inspirations, Weddings — Kathryn @ 1:41 pm

Wedding Favour Chocolates

I’m feeling a little more than passionate this morning.  I’ve spent alot of time over the past few weeks writing wedding and party planning guides, tips and trend articles for the Pink Frosting weddings website and I feel pretty honoured to be doing this job.  I don’t want to get all sentimental on you readers, but I do want to say that I am passionately in love with my business and am so blessed to have the time to help, guide and assist with planning beautiful celebrations.  I couldn’t imagine a nicer job in the world. So, thank you and thank you to the team at Pink Frosting who make celebrations sweeter for Australians every single day – Kathy, Belle, Jodie, Emily, Marg, Mel, Amy, Erin, Madelyn, Christine, Cal, Catherine and Lindsay… thanks guys!

Happy Celebrating!

Kathryn

October 11, 2010

Honour & Loyalty : Paper Cranes for Weddings

The perfect symbol for your wedding day.  Paper cranes mean honour and loyalty in Japan, and the Japanese believe that a person who folds 1000 paper cranes will be granted his or her greatest wish.  What a beautiful symbol of your love for one another – the loyalty you hold dear, your greatest wish for love together – fold 1000 paper cranes together and use these gorgeous decorations throughout your wedding day as a symbol of your love for one another and your hope for the future.

I recently found this stunning paper crane themed wedding over at Hostess Blog and needed to share it with you.  When this couple were dating, Jonathan would send Laura origami cranes with special messages inside them, just as the Japanese used to do.  Here are some of my favourite images of the stunning wedding of Laura and Jonathan in Chicago for your inspiration.

Laura and Jonathan used the paper cranes (1300 to be exact!) as a backdrop for their wedding ceremony.

Cranes 2

And, once the ceremony was over, the couple then creatively used the cranes as decorations for their wedding reception, both as a curtain and on the wedding centrepieces:

Cranes 4

Cranes 5

Floating around the wedding cake, the paper cranes reminded the guests of the love and hope the lucky couple has for one another:

Cranes 3

If you’d like to make your own paper cranes, there are plenty of origami books to purchase online, or you could follow these easy instructions.  Don’t forget to source beautiful papers to make your cranes from (we love that Laura used lots of colour and mis-matched designs in her cranes) and enlist the help of your bridesmaids, friends, family and anyone else who has paper folding skills!

We equally love this idea for a baby shower, Christening, bridal shower and engagement parties. 

Happy Celebrating!

Kathryn

June 10, 2010

Feather Wedding Decorations for Table Centrepieces

Caterina Canberra Mosaic 6

Ostrich feathers are one of my favourite wedding decorations.  They look so glamorous and they work beautifully in wedding aisles, table centrepieces, in bridal bouquets and so much more.  They scream glamour and style and they really are very easy to work with.

If you’re wanting to create a glamorous table centrepiece using ostrich feather drabs, it is usually recommend that you use a florists ball floating at the top of the vase which you carefully sit the end of the feather into for support.  In honesty, I usually don’t use these green florists balls because they are difficult to cover up at the top of the vase.  The best way I have found is to fill the vase with a support filler that looks good, such as plain old cellophane scrunched up and then filled with water (this creates an amazing ice-like effect) or with water pearls and secure the feathers as low down as possible in the vase.  If you’re also using flowers, this makes securing the feathers much easier as well as they have something else to rest against.

I’ve tried wiring the feathers for some extra length, but again, I don’t think it’s necessary if you’re filling the vase with cellophane, crystals, sand or another great filler.

Usually, I recommend you use between 3 and 7 ostrich feathers per centrepiece, but it depends on your budget!  If you use too many, your centrepieces can end up looking like palm trees!

I also love ostrich feathers on the back of chairs at outdoor weddings, as pew decorations at a Church ceremony, as an addition to or in place of flowers in a bridal bouquet (as shown below by Karen Tran) or simply laid flat as centrepiece decorations for wedding reception tables.  They are a versatile wedding decoration, that’s for certain, and your guests will love to take one home at the end of the night!

Karen Tran

And, as shown on the amazing Hostess Blog, they don’t just work for weddings!  These coloured feathers make a stunning baby shower decoration centrepiece too!

feathertreecenterpieces_1

Sign, I love ostrich feathers…. Now available to purchase online at Pink Frosting.

Happy Celebrating!

Kathryn

April 21, 2010

Two Love Birds Inspired Wedding Cake

I adore the Two Love Birds party supplies at Pink Frosting for weddings, engagements, bridal showers and kitchen teas.  The bird icon in black with a stunning vine and leaf pattern on a Tiffany blue background is a standout range for these celebrations – unusual, sweet and truly sophisticated.

MPS658044

I was contacted by a customer last week who loved the range so much that she used the design as inspiration for creating her final cake for her decorating course at Planet Cake.   I am completely in awe and in love with this stunning cake that Veronica turned out. 

Two Love Birds Cake 2

Veronica Turner started cake decorating about 3 years ago, after the birth of her second child.  She has completed 7 courses with Planet Cake, and since has evolved to making wedding & specialty cakes for family and friends. Veronica’s long term plan is to have her own business making wedding and specialty cakes, hopefully within a 3 year period.  We are so excited about Veronica’s talent and look forward to her career change in the future… and plenty more gorgeous inspirational images of her cake designs.

Happy Celebrating!

Kathryn

October 28, 2009

Hosting Fabulous Dinner Parties

 White contemporary table setting 1

It’s the time of year when we’re all thinking more about entertaining – the weather is warmer, our gardens are blooming, the ingredients in the supermarkets are superb, and Christmas is just around the corner.  The wonderful events planning team at Pink Frosting has been busy putting together great “how-to’s” to help you create a stunning party, which you can find on the planning and inspiration pages at www.PinkFrosting.com.au.  Here is one of my favourites – because I love a dinner party, no matter what time of year.  I hope this inspires you to create your own dynamic dinner parties.

The best dinner parties are intimate ones where the guests feel comfortable with each other, the conversation flows naturally and the hosts are relaxed and gracious.  Here are some tips to help you host the perfect dinner party:

  • Settle on a number of guests that will suit the scale of your kitchen and dining room.  As a basic rule, only invite as many guests as you can seat around the one table.
  • The comfort of your guests is your primary aim, so consider compatibility, tastes, ages and the ambiance you want to create when putting together your guest list.
  • Then decide on the date of your party.  This may also help you determine a theme and menu. 
  • Consider your theme.  This can be as simple as a combination of colours or a decorative motif.  It may also be a season or a holiday theme.  Decorations for a party can be as simple as crisp white linen and candlesticks on the table, or as elaborate as centrepieces, balloons, flower arrangements and even chair slipcovers.
  • Decorate with the seasons too.  Fresh flowers in spring or summer, a bowl full of polished apples and bare twigs in the winter, or a vase filled with red and gold leaves in autumn are simple, inexpensive and beautiful.
  • Send out party invitations to set the tone for the evening.  Invite guests to your party early, preferably two or more weeks ahead of time. This will give them time to RSVP and will give you more time to plan.
  • Make a realistic assessment of your cooking and baking skills, and the amount of time you’ll be able to commit to the party.  You may choose to hire a caterer to help you save on the stress of preparing a meal as well as entertaining your guests. 
  • If you are cooking yourself, plan a menu that you feel confident delivering.  Creative cuisine is best left to those who can deliver it flawlessly every time.  Choose menu items that can be prepared mostly in advance.  And remember, the best menus most often have simple combinations of the freshest, highest-quality ingredients. 
  • Take an inventory of your supplies: table and chairs, serving pieces, cutlery, crystal, plates, candlesticks, napery, and of course, kitchen equipment. Think about renting or borrowing items you don’t have. Make sure the things you own are sparkling clean and in good repair.
  • You can provide nibbles as soon as guests arrive, but don’t leave your guests lingering for hours.  Serve dinner no more than one hour after everyone arrives – 40 minutes is the ideal. 
  • Provide guests with a number of alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverage options.  You may like to prepare one ‘signature’ party cocktail, such as sangria for a festive summer party or sake as the overture to a Japanese feast, but don’t overdo it with a range of complicated cocktails!  Less is more!
  • Maximise the mood with minimal effort.  Unify your theme with candles and flowers in all the rooms the guests will occupy – the hall, dining room, living room and bathroom.
  • Your dining table should be the star of the show.  Add some wow factor with a spectacular table centrepiece in keeping with your theme.  But remember to keep room for serving dishes!
  • Encourage your guests to mix and mingle.  You may ask them to shift seats in between courses to inspire new connections.
  • As a parting gift, present each guest with a personalised party favor that complements your theme.
  • Most of all, enjoy yourself!

Happy Celebrating!

Kathryn

September 22, 2009

Ideas and Inspiration for Planning a Halloween Party in Australia

I must admit that I’m a pretty late bloomer when it comes to Halloween.  Being such an American tradition, we didn’t celebrate it in Australia when I was growing up.  Watching Halloween specials of the Cosby Show, Roseanne (yes, I confess), the Simpsons and Beverly Hills 90210 was about as spooky as it got around the 31st October in my very Aussie neighbourhood.

Now, I am loving Halloween.  There isn’t a more fun, strictly for celebration purposes only, party time during the year than the end of October.  You know we’re on the downhill run to Christmas when we start planning spooky parties.  You know its Spring time and the flowers are blooming and our gardens are happy when we’re looking to replace our real spider webs (god-forbid) with massive fake ones.  You know that it’s Halloween when Big W, Coles and Woolies are packed to the rafters with plastic pumpkins, lollies in all hideous shapes, colours and sizes, and we’re looking for the best costumes around to wear to the best Halloween party we’ve been invited to.

So, as a Halloween convert and the owner of Australia’s leading online celebration and party shop, Pink Frosting, here are my best places to gather inspiration for celebrating Halloween in Australia. 

For the Best Halloween Theme Ideas and Inspirations, look no further than the incredible Hostess with the Mostess.  Featuring gorgeous images (the two images above are from this site) and ideas ranging from childish to feminine, this is the go-to website for great ideas for planning a seriously styling Halloween bash.   I particularly love the Ghouls Night Halloween Bash featuring hot pink and bling as the central theme.

Now, when Martha Stewart calls her website Halloween Central, you know you’ve found the right place for great do-it-yourself tips, craft ideas, menu planning and inspiration to create a truly special Halloween celebration.  While we are unlikely to bake a pumpkin pie here in Australia, the ghoulish menus, fantastic cupcakes, decorating ideas and crafts are just spectacular.  Don’t forget to sign up for the Halloween Workshop which will give you free ideas and planning tips in a newsletter format straight to your inbox daily.  Brilliant.

For spectacular kids costumes for Halloween, the girls at My Make Believe have the most incredible selection you can imagine.  Is your little one a miniature jack-o-lantern?  Maybe more a black cat?  Or a not-so-traditional type such as a feminine flamingo?  These costumes really do make me want to go trick-or-treating with the kids!  And this Aussie company is stocked up ready for your Halloween orders.

For cheap adult costumes, visit online stores such as Party Costumes or your local party hire shop.  In my mind, it’s much more fun to make your own with an unlimited imagination and plenty of late nights with a bottle of vino, your sewing kit and re-runs of 90210 Halloween specials!

And, to decorate your Halloween bash, there’s no better place than Australia’s number one online celebration and party shop, Pink Frosting.  We’ve got some amazingly spooky and fun Halloween decorations, invitations, accessories, favours, games and cupcake decorations to help you bring your Halloween dreams to life! 

Now, I’m not sure what your local area is like but I know many buildings host their own Trick-Or-Treat schedule where a kind volunteer organises which apartments are happy to see trick-or-treating children and provide them with yummy Halloween candy.  If you’re one of the lucky ones where it’s safe and organised to let your kids trick-or-treat, the best places online to buy lollies are Goody Goody Gumdrops and Wallies Lollies

Go on, have some fun at work, with your friends and family this Halloween.  For no other reason than to have fun!

Happy Celebrating!

Kathryn

September 20, 2009

Cake of the Week: Very Different Cakes

If you’re anything like me, you know a party needs three things – delicious wine, great decorations, and cake. Being the fashionista that I am, there’s never going to be a plain cake at my parties! I want my cake to be memorable, especially if it’s for a special occasion.  And not that I have anything against iced flowers, but I want decorations that reflect my personal style.

I want whimsy.  I want glamour.  I want GLITZ!

I am so excited about the new range of cake decorations and cake bling from famous Los Angeles cake decorators, Very Different Cakes, now stocked at Pink Frosting for Australian and New Zealand brides and entertainers. 

Now, I definitely can’t afford their cakes (and, given we live in Australia not in Los Angeles, I can’t get them anyway), but I can easily afford their Swarovski crystal cake jewels. You can customise a monogram or have hearts, flowers, and assorted “garden friends,” starting from just five dollars.

Now, that’s fashionable food we can all afford!

Happy Celebrating!

Kathryn

September 11, 2009

My Japanese Table

Filed under: General, Inspiration, My Inspirations — Kathryn @ 7:50 pm

Pink Frosting is getting some Japanese influence!  And, no don’t worry, Pink Frosting is still Australia’s number one online wedding shop and will continue to be so!

Personally, however, I’m making a huge journey as my husband has been posted to live in Tokyo for three years.  We’ve packed up our house in Canberra and we’re now settled down in the middle of this enormous and beautiful metropolis, Tokyo Japan. 

I anticipate being inspired by so many beautiful, alluring and new decorations, tables, taste experiences and traditions from Tokyo and our travels around Japan, as well as some personally moving and touching experiences with my family. 

Although nothing changes with my businesses, Pink Frosting and Australia Entertains, I wanted to create a blog where I could capture anything that I find inspiring about Japan.  If you want to read up on what the Porritt’s are up to over in Tokyo, you can visit us at www.MyJapaneseTable.com for some interesting yarns!  And you can still email me at kathryn@pinkfrosting.com.au with any great wedding, entertaining or celebration stories, ideas and inspiration.

Happy Celebrating!

Kathryn

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