Sunday, May 9, 2010

Party for a Sea Monkey

Yesterday was the baby shower for one of my best friends Kate, her man Ben, and their soon-to-be-born daughter known for now as Sea Monkey.

Kate's sister Sienna, a rad artist, singer, and food stylist hosted a Mad Hatter's Tea Party at her cabin in the sky in Silverlake. Sienna is one of those people with VISION. The house she now lives in with her husband Dallas is one of those that without vision you'd see and run away from. Instead they gutted the inside, installed beams in the ceiling, cleaned up the junk out back and made an open, airy, well, cabin-in-the-sky.

Kate and I have been friends since college when we met in Italian class. She was a year ahead of me in school and my senior year she spent traveling all over Europe. She surprised me on my graduation day by showing up unannounced. I think that was the most emotional part of the day for me. And now she's having a baby! She and Ben aren't getting married, so this was their big party. As much as we all hear it in books, this is really what life's about: crossing milestones in life with the people you love. It's so bizarre that a few months ago Kate was Kate being one of my maids of honor, and now she's Kate plus Sea Monkey and she and Ben are creating this amazing family.

So the party!

Upon arriving one was greeted by the Caterpillar (complete with hookah) in a field of astroturf mushrooms
The tea table was set up out back:
Sienna and their dad Jack, who happens to be an art director, stacked tea pots, teacups and plates from thrift stores, glued them together at lopsided angles to create Mad Hatter chaos

Jack blew up the original Alice illustrations and from them created these wooden pieces which were all over the backyard

Another of my dear friends Ami (seen in the first pic by the caterpillar) is one seriously gifted woman in the kitchen and she made the mini lemon and chocolate tarts as well as 4 flavors of macarons: olive oil vanilla (my fave), rose, apricot, and chocolate caramel. Sienna made shortbread cookies she decorated to look like the White Rabbit's pocketwatch and the Queen of Hearts' playing cards
I was on the savory committee, and yours truly made this farro salad after the girls at Crispy Tarts sent it over (thanks ladies!!!!! it was delish!) and tea sandwiches made with this spread and some shaved fennel. I didn't get pics of that---oops--but they were super yummy as were all the tea sandwiches and salads made by those of us whose purpose was to make food that would balance the sugar crashes everyone would be going on otherwise. Yes, there was tea, but also Pimms' Cup punch for those of us not carrying a child.

There was the art station with blank onesies and fabric paint and pens; Kate and Ben's friend Ethan filmed guests talking to the parents and the baby; Dallas stocked a wheelbarrow with beer and manned the cotton candy machine (for reals); and after the sun went down there was a dance party on the back porch.

Here's Kate
and Kate's mom, who dressed as a flower arrangement

and this amazing orchid centerpiece Sienna did with teacups

And oh yeah, we all wore hats.


  1. So glad you loved the salad. How did it go over?

    Looks like it was a great day. Love the 'flower' costume:)

  2. salad was devoured; i added extra salt to the salad and herbs to the dressing. the maldon sea salt was supergood on it---added a little crunch too....thank you again:)

  3. so cute, mellie! the stacked tea cups are the best. and I am in need of a farro salad. I may be close to overdosing on quinoa. okay, no, that's not possible. But a change for perhaps one night would be nice.

  4. teenie you should make this one! it's so springy! and the meyer lemon dressing is superyum and you can use it on other things.