The Party Emporium

Friday Five: invitation inspiration

Friday Five: invitation inspiration

Who doesn’t love receiving a beautiful invite or thank you note in the card? A well considered invite says a whole lot about the event, or the sentiment behind the thank you or note. And while we love luxe cardstock and swoon over a gold foil – first and foremost comes the design. When it came to choosing my own wedding invites, I knew I wanted something that was clean and structured, yet floral and feminine – and I absolutely had to have an envelope liner! Firstly I feel head-first for the ‘Reverence’ collection at Bliss & Bone – the most stunning pressed leaf and perspex invite screened with gold – however, needless to say these fell a little out of the budget! In the end, my lovely friends over at Design Collision worked with me to create my perfect invite – drawing inspiration from some botanical prints I’d found in an old bookstore in Tuscany, Italy. Given we’d eloped and these invites also served as an announcement, they carried our elopement date on the front, along with our new initials to create a monogram, foiled in gold.

Our other favourite stationers and invite designers?

1. Bliss & Bone

2. Santiago Sunbird

3. French Navy


(my invitations, by Design Collision)

5. Daniel Ioannou



Friday Five: the Bling Ring

Friday Five: the Bling Ring

















As you may know, I recently said ‘I do’ overseas at our elopement, which you can read all about here. While we never set out to be ‘non-traditional’, when we said our vows, we hadn’t actually even bought our rings. Truth was, I hadn’t found it yet. And by IT, I mean the one. And I didn’t mean my husband in this instance. I’d rather go without than go with something I wasn’t in love with. A good rule for both husbands and jewellery, I might add. Although I was a massive fan of chunky vintage cocktails rings, I’d actually never owned a diamond – so it’s with trepidation I ventured into the world of fine jewellery. To get my head around this ‘4 C’s business, my friend pointed me in the direction of this great (short) video on how a diamond’s value is ascertained. You do kinda need to know all this stuff to arm yourself with answers to the inevitable ‘why is that one more expensive that that one,‘ question or even the ‘seriously, who would know if it’s cubic zirconia anyway.’ Only funny once, buddy.

When we decided to elope, I started the hunt for a ring. EARNESTLY. I mean, I was trawling the internet for days, eating dinner in bed* and glued to anything from estate auctions in Russia to my local jeweller in a bid to get my head around it all and y’know TRYING TO FIND THE ONE. For someone that had never really displayed an interest in diamonds or jewellery, this was an all-consuming (and time-consuming) obsession…and those goddamn google cookies embed jewellery ads WHEREVER I WENT. I felt like a woman possessed, but in the end, I sure knew what the hell made a good diamond from a shonky one and also, what style I kept on coming back to. I figured the more I looked at, the more I knew I’d know when I saw IT. I also wasn’t set on a diamond. And I wasn’t wed to having a newly made ring. But I was set on finding the right one. Try as I might – I just couldn’t find what I wanted locally without it costing the GDP of Botswana to get it made. And I wasn’t confident I could articulate what it was I wanted anyway.

As I went through the process, vintage and estate jewellery was what I kept coming back to without fail. Like Vegemite or crunchy Peanut Butter vs smooth, you’re either a vintage jewellery person or you’re not. Some people understandably aren’t big on wearing dead people diamonds. Even as I write that, it sounds kind gross, but for me dear reader; I LOVED stories that ring might tell me, but mostly – it all came down to the style. Vintage jewellery possesses a style you just can’t make up in a new ring off the shelf. There’s an enigma and a beauty to them. It’s almost mythical – like unicorns and a man that doesn’t leave towels on the floor, estate jewellery has a quality that is hard to define. And as we jetted off to the US, this was the vintage jewellery shortlist where I just knew I was going to find THE ONE:

Doyle & Doyle 412 West 13th Street, New York 10014

Bell & Bird – 1206 West 38th St. # 1102 Austin, Texas 78705

Erstwhile – by appointment only, midtown Manhattan

As history will tell you, I found THE ONE at Doyle & Doyle on our last day in NYC. Quietly tucked away in the Meatpacking district, their selection is edited – but mind bogglingly gorgeous. The Australian dollar was still holding strong against the US (hurrah!) and the next day I flew out as a wife and bona-fide diamond wearer. The other 2 places I wanted to visit weren’t vintage specialists, but places I’d admired from afar and full of untold amazingness. One was Anna Sheffield – an amazing jeweller that crafts timeless, yet alternative pieces. The Hazeline still gives me goosebumps, but felt too delicate for my ahem, sizeable hand span. Catbird NYC in Brooklyn is a treasure trove of delicate, fun and whimsy – even if you only have a $500 budget for a wedding band, there are so many beauties here that it’s worth shipping back to Australia, even with the Australian dollar falling faster than Madonna at the Brits.

So if you’re thinking of buying from the states, here are a few to think about:

  • Remember the Americans don’t add their tax until checkout. This is super annoying and you will forget!
  • If you’re going to ship it back to Australia, make sure you have proper insurance. Obvs.
  • Depending on the Aussie dollar, supply & demand means that diamonds do tend to be a little cheaper than back home at face value, but you will need to consider taxes and insurance and it won’t always work out cheaper. If you’re lucky to be in the US and think you don’t have to pay US sales tax if you get them to ship it home, you’ll have to pay GST on customs when it arrives. Once you factor in the US Sales Tax at checkout (10%), plus shipping & insurance, it puts you almost at the 17% GST range anyway.
  • Make sure you buy from a reputable buyer as you would back home, and that your ring comes with a GIA certificate.

So that’s my ring journey. I adore it and so glad I chewed up all my data months on end searching around and visiting my top 5 in the US. It’s perfect and I’ve never seen anything like it. Just like the Credit Card bill once the conversion fees came through…don’t forget to factor that in one in too!

*I wish.


Hello 2014!

Hello 2014!

Can you believe another year is nearly over? You know what that means – another reason to celebrate and party like it’s 1999. Except it’s nearly 2014, but that’s all just details. From bbq to soiree, pull on a party dress and pretty up your pad and get ready to ring in the new year. Check out my top tips for fuss free fun on and get ready to fiesta with these top buys from

So here’s to 2014 – thank you for your support during the past year – it’s been a ball! While we clear the decks for new product and go hunting for treasures, please note that orders placed from 1 – 13 Jan 2014 won’t be dispatched until the 14th. We’ve got BIG BARBIE DREAM HOUSE type plans, so stay tuned for more fun and fabulousness to come!

Images L-R Pinterest, Tuck & Bonte, Sucre Shop. Product available


Royally good baby gifts

Royally good baby gifts

With Kate Middleton due anytime soon, we take a peek around the web for baby gifts fit for a royal. New or expectant mums will also love Romy & The Bunnies. Launched earlier in the year by Julia Restoin Roitfeld, daughter of ex-Vogue Paris editor, Carine Roitfeld, this blog is named after her daughter, Romy Nicole and is dedicated to all things motherhood.


Goodbye Summer: Harvest Fresh

Goodbye Summer: Harvest Fresh

We can hardly believe the Australian summer will all be over shortly – the trees around us are turning a brilliant hue of orange, and the streets will soon be lined in a crisp blanket of autumn leaves. Take your colour cue with corals and dusty oranges, but keep it fresh with a shot of mint – here are some delicious finds from around the net. We’re also loving the idea of bouquets with succulents – something a little different, modern and utterly inspiring.