Elle’s Tropical “cELLEbration”
by Carrie Colbert
Hi there – We are so thrilled to share today’s article about the sip and see we had for Elle last week!
Before we dive into the details of the event and our tips for hosting a sip and see, a little background… Ocean Spray® approached us in late spring (when I was still pregnant) about helping spread the word about their new line of mocktail juices. We jumped at the chance to host an influencer happy hour of sorts with the mocktails. However, as you know, little Elle Belle decided to make her appearance about a month early – delaying and changing plans for our mocktail event.
After Elle arrived and I regained my footing a bit, we decided to move forward with the idea of hosting a sip and see event. (If you’re not sure what this is, keep reading!). In the end, it was not only a great project for the website, but a very special morning for my daughter. It was so fun to introduce her to so many of my Houston blogger / influencer friends!
And what better excuse to host a tropical themed party full of pineapples and flamingos and flowers and balloons and all the good things?! We hope you enjoy these photos as much as we enjoyed creating them. Plus, we learned a lot along the way, so hopefully the tips will be helpful to you as well!
7 Tips for Hosting a Sip and See
For those of you who don’t know what a sip and see is, let me explain! First things first, I don’t have kids of my own, but I do have a niece and three nephews, and many of my friends have babies, so I’ve learned lots.
A sip and see used to typically be a southern thing, but has grown widely popular over the years. And, in a nutshell, it’s when your friends come over to meet your baby. They, quite literally, sip drinks or eat bites and see your baby.
There aren’t any set rules necessarily, but typically sip and sees happen anywhere between one month and six or so months. It’s a special event since this is where many of your close friends will get to meet your baby for the first time. So, keep on reading for seven tips on how to host a sip and see, along with details from Elle’s!
1. Choose a Theme
The first part of planning any type of event is coming up with the theme. Once you have that nailed down, everything starts to flow. From the get go, we knew we wanted something summery and colorful, and we loved the idea of pink and green with touches of gold.
So, we ultimately landed on a tropical theme. Specifically, we went with a tropical “cELLEbration” (a play on her name) full of flamingos and palm trees. Of course, there are endless theme ideas you can choose from and come up with. To get your creative juices going, check out the ideas mentioned in this article.
As soon as we decided on our theme, we started pinning ideas to a shared, private Pinterest board, and then we started reaching out to our favorite creatives in the city (more on them below!) to help us execute our vision and bring our ideas to life. On that note, a sip and see is a great opportunity to enlist the help of your creative friends and family members. They would be thrilled to help with this special event!
2. Consider Having a Mid-Morning Affair at a Friend or Family Member’s Home
Of course, the second most important part of planning an event is finalizing a date, time, and place.
We chose mid-morning for several reasons. One, babies tend to be more pleasant during this mid-morning time of day. Plus, this time makes menu planning a breeze. We decided on 10:00 to 11:30 am on a Thursday at someone’s home. An hour and a half turned out to be a good amount of time – enough time for everyone to see Elle, eat, drink, and mingle, but not too long, because, remember this is a baby’s party!
If it’s possible, try to have the event at someone’s home, as it will help to keep costs down. Typically, if you have it at a restaurant or other venue, there can be minimums and other requirements that may make it more challenging. Also, having it at someone’s home brings about an automatic sense of ease and calm that makes people that much more comfortable.
In terms of the food we served, we went with a simple brunch menu with the help of Marla Murphy of The Blonde Pantry. The menu consisted of banana chocolate chip bread, spinach and mushroom quiche, a DIY yogurt parfait bar, fresh fruit, assorted cookies from Paulie’s, and the most beautiful cake we’ve ever seen from Maple & Love.
3. Opt for an Evite
We love pretty paper and invitations immensely, but we decided to create an invite we emailed out to our friends, rather than put it in the mail. For one, this is a much more affordable option. Paper invitations can add up, and of course, there’s postage to think about. There are tons of free websites and programs to use for creating an invitation. It’s fun to design it exactly as you’d like, too. This also makes it extremely easy for your invitees to RSVP, as they can just email back directly. In addition, this sets the mood for the event to be low-key and unpretentious.
4. Think About Having a Fun Dress Code to Go Along with the Theme
We wanted to keep things pretty casual, but we also wanted people to dress the part, so we decided to put an attire code on the invitation. This was simply a suggestions of what to wear – not a requirement. We mentioned embracing the tropical theme by wearing pink or green. Of course, if someone didn’t want to wear pink or green they didn’t have to, but we thought it would make for a fun environment. Plus, it made for great photo opportunities, as you can see!
5. Include “Mocktails” on the Menu
Chances are expectant mothers and new mothers will be attending the sip and see. Whether they are pregnant or breastfeeding, those ladies will most certainly appreciate non-alcoholic options. We served Ocean Spray’s new mocktail drinks, and everyone loved them!
We mixed the cranberry sangria flavor with lime sparkling water and topped it with blueberries. For the tropical citrus paradise flavor, we added mint leaves.. And we added sparkling wine to the cranberry peach bellini flavor and topped it with strawberries. Yes, we included one alcoholic drink for those who might like to indulge.
Not only are the Ocean Spray® mocktails delicious, but they are colorful, easy to use, and extremely photo-worthy, which is always a bonus in our minds. The juices can be served alone or customized as we did. They worked perfectly with our theme and decor.
6. Don’t Be Shy About Letting Guests Know Germs Aren’t Welcome
With the baby being so young at the sip and see, protecting baby’s well-being is paramount, of course. Don’t feel badly about asking friends to wash their hands before holding the baby. Maybe even consider having hand sanitizer handy. You can also politely let your guests know that it’s best to leave other children at home, as germs spread quickly especially among youngsters.
7. Keep it Easy
Having a newborn is overwhelming enough. Don’t stress yourself as hostess or your friend the new mom by going overboard. Keep the focus on the beautiful newborn baby with a casual, low-key, come and go approach. At the end of the day, the reason for the sip & see is to meet your sweet new baby and celebrate this happy and joyful occasion.
The Creatives Who Helped Bring Our Tropical CELLEbration to Life
We feel so lucky to live in a city with the most incredible creatives who are not only so extremely talented, but also collaborative. Nothing makes us happier than to join forces with these wonderful women and men.
We were beyond thrilled to partner with so many of our local favorites to make this event so special. Once we shared our colorful, creative vision, we knew we were in capable hands. It was a privilege to trust you all to execute this so beautifully.
So, a huge thank you to everyone who helped make Elle’s first party such a success! We couldn’t have done it without you.
- Balloons by Big Ass Balloons | @bigassballoons
- Balloon calligraphy by Riley Elizabeth Designs | @rileyelizabethdesigns
- Cake by Maple & Love | @mapleandlove
- Cake topper and drink stirrers by Post Studio Projects | @poststudiohou
- Cookies by Paulie’s Cookies | @pauliescookies
- Flowers by Blush & Vine | @blushandvine
- Food and drinks by The Blonde Pantry | @theblondepantry
- Menu and drink cards calligraphy by Meg Grant | @meggrant.co
- Murals by Arts by Aaron | @artsbyaaron
And a huge thank you, as well, to our dear friends for joining us!
- Alex Carreno of Adored by Alex
- Alice Kerley of Lone Star Looking Glass
- Ashley Rose of Sugar & Cloth
- Bethany Buchanan of Southern Chic Style
- Jenny Weber of Houston Tidbits
- Lisa Gochman of Cherry Pie Hospitality
- Lyndsey Zorich of L.Avenue
- Sage Coralli of So Sage Blog
- Traci Ling of Traci Ling Photography
- Valerie Dittner of Adorn Yourself Accordingly
A Few More Things
Finally, we’d love to hear from you! If you have kids, did you have a sip and see? What did you do for yours? And if you’re expecting, are you considering a sip and see?
We hope you enjoyed all these photos! It was truly such a special morning, and we’re thrilled to be sharing it with all of you.
Thank you as always for all of your support and see you back here tomorrow morning with a new outfit post! Have a great Monday.
Photos by Maritere Rice
Thank you to Ocean Spray® for sponsoring this content. Sponsorships like this help make Wear + Where + Well possible.
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