I’m so excited to share today’s post! Kristi is a elementary school special education teacher who is totally inspired by the awesome crafts seen on Pinterest. She met her boyfriend over 11 years ago while they worked at a movie theater. She says “it took us a bit of bickering over who made the better popcorn and which movie was the best, but not long after, we fell in love.”
Finally, on their 11 year anniversary this past July, he proposed and they are getting married next May. A few weeks ago, they hosted a movie night engagement party, full of creative ideas inspired by Pinterest pins, including a popcorn bar! You know I’m a sucker for a good themed party so check out the awesome job she did keeping the theme going!
We wanted the invitations to mimic a movie ticket and luckily found Kristen McGillvray’s Etsy shop. She was really helpful, responding quickly and made changes quickly for me. I loved working with her and I would highly recommend her for making any cute postcard invitations. The invitations were about $15 to make and then I had them printed at Staples (who was also awesome to work with, being both very helpful and knowledgeable).
The color scheme for the party was red and gray. I bought straws in these colors from the Etsy Shop Cherished Blessings and had helpful friends add gray straw tags on them.
Guests would drink from their own mason jar glass, which was decorated with a Martha Stewart Crafts metal cake charm, a red paper heart and a chalkboard label sticker.
I bought a few different chalkboards at HomeGoods that I really liked. I spent the extra bucks on the nicer ones because they go with the decor of my house and I knew I could use them in other places after the party.
I strung over 300 photos of Ryan and I over the years throughout our backyard space. It looked completely awesome and so personal seeing it once it was done, but it took a long time to make the really long strands of photos. To keep the color scheme going, I used scrapbooking paper in different red and gray colors and textures, punched holes on top and threaded the photos. I made 3 really long strands of 100 photos each, hanging them around our whole deck and on the walls. It was pretty when done, but, in the future, I think I will use clothespins and just pin them all on.
My most favorite part was our centerpieces (which I did not get a picture of). I found these vintage movie reels in my mother’s attic so I layered them on the tables, put mason jars with big white candles in them and stacked them up in the cutest way. I’m so mad I didn’t take a picture of this, because I loved the vintage feel of the tables!
FOOD & DRINK
We wanted to keep the food all “movie theater” themed. Our appetizers were pretzel bites (our favorite thing we used to eat together 11 years ago) and bowls of movie candy and nachos.
Our main dishes were sliders and pizzas. The sliders were from Sliderz & Friez. Not only were these SO GOOD and very reasonably priced. They even delivered for us since we ordered so much and they realized how difficult it would be for us to leave the party to come get them! The specialty pizzas were from Tuscany Brewhouse, who also delivered. Their food is ALWAYS good! They were super accommodating and even made me a gluten free pizza for one of my friends.
Ryan and I always argue over who made the better popcorn when we worked together at the theater (of course it was me) so, obviously, we NEEDED to have a popcorn bar! I already owned the glass containers (purchased at Walmart) but added small chalkboard label stickers (purchased at Michaels) that peeled off easily when the party was over. Behind them, I hung a popcorn bar purchased from the Etsy Shop Paramore Art Works.
I bought the popcorn from two different places, Popcornopolis and Populence. I prefered Popcornopolis overall, but I liked that Populance had a raspberry flavored popcorn that was pink 🙂 The cupcake and cinnamon toast popcorn were my favorite two flavors. (I debated bringing the cinnamon toast one inside so that everyone would stop eating it and I’d have it for later.) Guests ate these snacks in bags that said “He POPPED the question and she said yes!”
Since the popcorn was already premade, we also rented a popcorn machine so that we would have the movie theater popcorn smell.
We served adult “Rootbeer floats” (Vanilla vodka & Rootbeer topped with whipped cream), “Sweet Spiked Tea” and Lemonade in the decorated mason jars. We put vodka in pretty much everything, except for the lemonade (but we put a bottle out so that people could spike it themselves).
We ordered an assortment of specialty cupcakes from Cupcakes by Carousel. When my MOH explained to them that I wanted all different movie theater candies on the cupcakes, they helped us incorporate a variety that would tie in with the theme. We had: salted pretzel, Reeses, M&M, and Twizzlers topping vanilla, red velvet, and turtle cake.
Ryan made an outdoor movie screen following this tutorial from Pottery Barn in order to show a slide show. We changed it a bit by hanging it from a tree and tying it to the ground, rather than how they had suggested. Projectors are pricey, but I borrowed one from school. We are now looking into getting one of our own for next summer since we enjoyed the backyard movie screen so much! I laid out some throw blankets and pillows to make it a cute space. When we were done with the slide show, I played Monsters Inc. to occupy the kids while their parents got to stay and hang a bit longer.
To entertain our guests, we played The Newlywed Game. The game included my divorced parents, Ryan’s happily married parents, and the two of us, the engaged couple that can’t wait to be married. Ryan’s parents won, but we’re all convinced they cheated. It was probably the funniest part of the night.
We also wanted something for our guests to do in the yard, so Ryan’s father and I made custom cornhole boards. It was such nice time for me to bond with his father just him and me. I learned a lot more about Ryan’s grandfather who was artsy, like myself, and I also think I taught Ryan’s dad a thing or two about painting. I don’t think he expected that I would know what I was doing… since he’s never seen me do anything artistic. We had a blast. I ordered the letter decals from the Etsy Store WGCornhole. They were very helpful, sending me instructions and printing our decals quickly. However, personally I found it hard to apply the single letter decals. If I were to do it again, I would get a large decal that was one piece so that I didn’t struggle so much with lining up the letters. To complete the chevron look, I ordered matching chevron cornhole bags from the Etsy store Cornhole factory.
Kristi’s biggest regret? “I wish I took more photos of everything, but I really just forgot. I have now assigned a bridesmaid to do this from now on!”