Valentine’s Day always brings out our girly side. No matter how hard we try to avoid the sweet treats and romance-overload, we always fall victim to Cupid’s festive arrow. This February 14, we’ve decided to entirely indulge in the season. We’re talking brunch, bubbly, and a whole lot of pink! Camille Simmons (of Planning Pretty) put together a ladylike event to inspire your own indulgent Valentine’s Day soiree. We sat down with Camille & Nanette to get the inside scoop – and as expected, everything’s coming up roses:

What was your inspiration for the event?
 Brunch is always a good idea, and Valentine’s Day is a perfect theme! Flowers, sweets, drinks, and your closest friends are the ingredients for the perfect party. It is easy to find inspiration in this girly holiday, whether it’s the pink and gold or delicate fragrant roses as decor or ingredients. Valentine’s day is about celebrating what we love, and we definitely love our best friends!

Such a great party premise! What is your personal entertaining mantra?
Always put your guests first. For this party, everything is tailored for the girls. It’s romantic and feminine, yet in a playful way and the gold accents add a touch of glam. For intimate parties, including someone’s favorite flowers or dessert shows that you are a thoughtful host. If you incorporate personalized elements, your guests will really feel special. They will appreciate the beautiful decor and great food even more. For any event it’s important to let your own style shine, but entertaining is always about others.

The decor looks fabulous, yet easy to achieve. Did you DIY?
While DIY projects are one of my favorite activities, I know everyone doesn’t have the time to craft when planning your own party. Baking, cooking, and decorating can be quite time consuming! So when in a tight crunch, shopping for great quality decorations like these from Minted are a wonderful and convenient solution. Everything is customizable too! The best part? The decorations become an investment for future parties and can be mixed & matched for any theme. If you do have the time to craft, then do so! Using Photoshop to make your own signage or creating pompoms from tissue gift paper are great DIY projects to do ahead of time.

We’re eyeing those donuts… What else was on the menu for this event?
Keeping with the pink theme, the menu was filled pink treats. Mini bagels with pink smoked salmon, fresh strawberries and spiked chocolate dipped donut cake are the first to enjoy. Taking a food, like donuts, that’s not particularly known as sophisticated and bringing out its elegance with rose petals and sprinkles is the perfect touch. Then after a couple strawberry rose bellinis, the sweets follow. Heart-shaped French macarons filled with rose buttercream and vanilla cupcakes with the same buttercream are both pretty in pink. It’s so easy to add rose flavoring to your favorite sweets and beverages. You can use just a few drops of rose water, which has a beautiful perfume scent. Or, try rose syrup, which can be purchased or made by infusing simple syrup with rose water. And it makes everything smell amazing too!

Roses were made for Valentine’s Day; you’ve done a great job of incorporating them into the party! And the music playing in the background?
Single Ladies, Beyonce
Brave, Sara Bareilles
Tongue Tied, Grouplove
Show Stopper, Brandon & Leah
Three, Cameron Ernst

Dreamy. Finally, what are the TOP 5 TIPS you’d give our readers for creating their perfect party?

1. Choose wonderful colors! Having a great color scheme takes much of the struggle out of styling a party at home. Find inspiration on your favorite sites like Rue or browse Pinterest for ideas. Also, consider your favorite pieces at home, whether that is your favorite set of dishes, glassware or linens. Build a color palette from what you love and what fits the occasion.

2. Plan a themed menu. Having treats that match the decor of your party will impress your guests! Now a theme can be a color, time period, culture or favorite movie. Get creative with cocktails, which are easily themed and dessert decor.

3. Fresh flowers are a must! This is always the prettiest and quickest way to add elegance to a tablescape. Even if you don’t have any other decor, flowers can transform a table from bland to gorgeous. Visit your local flower market or grocery store and pick up a bouquet or two. Split up the bouquet into a few vases or make one huge arrangement.  Bring home your bouquets a day before so the blooms have a chance to open beautifully.

4. Mix old and new. It’s definitely tempting to go out and buy all new dishes and accessories, but you don’t have to. You have fabulous taste right? Show off your collection of great flatware or vases. Still mix in a few new pieces whether it’s decor, linens or a new cake stand. Throwing parties is a wonderful way to gradually build you entertaining supplies!

5. Prepare as much as you can ahead of time. Rushing to cook everything the day of party is no fun and quite stressful. Coordinate a pot luck and let each guest bring something and give them plenty of notice to prepare. Or, if you love to do everything yourself, prep as many recipes as you can a couple days ahead. It’s the chopping and measuring that tend to suck up a lot of time. Make frostings, sauces, doughs or marinades a few days before. Cook or bake in advanced if you can. That way, come party time, all you have to do is warm up and serve.  You’ll be more focused on playing hostess then scrambling to finish.

Styling, menu and floral arrangements: Camille Simmons
Photographer & Donut Cake: Nanette Wong
Pink Petal Fans

Conversation Heart Valentine Custom Greeting Sign
Conversation Heart Valentine Custom Table Signs 1 and 2
Conversation Heart Valentine Flag Stickers
Conversation Heart Valentine Table Confetti
Classic Pink Shimmer Ribbon
Gold Glitter Banner