Signature Gift Wrap – Making Kids Parties Easy

Signature Gift Wrap – Making Kids Parties Easy

Are your weekends filled with kids birthday parties?  It can be quite a task to find an inexpensive (yet thoughtful) gift, a birthday card AND something to wrap it with… especially when the party starts in an hour.  Let us introduce you to a concept that’s going to make your birthday party rounds MUCH easier – signature gift wrap.   What is that exactly?  It’s like having personalized stationery, but for your gifts.  When you have a gift to give, you wrap it in your style.  The beauty of having a signature gift wrap is it’s easy, it saves you time (and ultimately money), but it also saves you from the stress of scrambling to pull together a cute kid’s gift before every party.

Here’s the trick – choose a theme and stick with it.

  • Pick something that jives with your child’s personality
  • Stock up on the elements to create an adorable package
  • Crank out those kid’s birthday gifts like a machine

Party after party, your package can be a standout on the gift table, and you won’t have to stress or waste time of putting it together.  In fact, once you streamline the process, gift wrapping for parties will seem effortless.  You’ll confidently pull together an adorable gift within minutes and still have it look like you spent waaaay too much time on Pinterest.  No more feeling like you’re “re-inventing the wheel” by wrapping every single package in a different way – we promise it’s okay  – not every gift “for a girl” has to be wrapped in girly stuff.  When a present for a girl is from a boy, it’s perfectly fine to wrap it in something that fits his personality – we think it makes the gift even more personal.

To get started, you need to pick a theme.  We just debuted NEW personalized gift tags for kids, so we think that’s the perfect place to start for designing your child’s signature gift wrap.  The tags are small, affordable (as low as 0.45 each!), and personalized, so you can skip buying a card all together (look at you saving money already).  You can see all the designs on our website HERE, but keep scrolling if you want inspiration for how to use them.  We’ve come up with easy (yet creative) ways to make your gifts stand out without breaking the bank. Not into wrapping boxes?  A few options show how you can use them with gift bags too.  This process can be as easy or elaborate as you want it to be – the point is to make a plan. Once you’ve picked your signature gift wrap style, stock up and enjoy the ease of one less decision to make for that next party.  You may be thinking it sounds expensive – but hang with us – you’ll be surprised to discover that the cost is reasonable.  Plus, when you factor in the loads of time and stress it will save – it’s well worth the investment.

And now for your signature gift wrap inspiration:

donuts{donut gift tag + hot pink polka dot wrapping paper (had on hand) + teal sheer ribbon (also had on hand)}

cactus 2{cactus gift tag + hot pink twill ribbon ($2 per roll at Michaels) + wrapping paper ($1 per roll at Michaels) + tiny clothespin ($8 for 325 qty at Michaels)}

robot 2{robot gift tag + wrapping paper ($4 per roll at Walgreens, also reversible) + yellow raffia + a 1.5″ bolt from the hardware store}

guitar 2{guitar gift tag + zebra gift wrap ($1 per roll at Dollar General) + picture hanging wire ($3 for the kit with lots of wire)}

dog 2{dog gift tag + blue gift bag ($1 each at Dollar General) + red striped ribbon + red tissue ($1 at Dollar General for several sheets)… see how much a few little touches liven up a plain colored gift sack?}

bulldozer 2 sm{bulldozer gift card + white gift wrap (had on hand) + CAUTION tape ($5 for a huge roll at Ace Hardware) + tiny bit of twine and double-sided tape to keep everything in place}

rainbow 3{rainbow gift tag + green dot gift wrap ($1 per roll at Dollar General) + rainbow ribbon ($5 for the spool at Michaels) – one of the easiest to do but that ribbon makes a big impact, so it’s worth the splurge!}

crab 2{crab gift tag + red gift wrap ($4 per roll at Walgreens) + black parachute cord ($7 at Ace Hardware for a good length, probably enough for 3 or 4 packages) tied in nautical knots for detail}

sports 3{sports gift tag + black/white stripe gift wrap (had on hand, but this would also be cute with any specific sports-themed paper) + orange raffia}

lion 2{lion gift tag + orange/yellow striped gift wrap ($1 per roll at Michaels) + blue ruffled ribbon ($4 per roll at Michaels)}

sailboat 2{sailboat gift tag + colorful gift wrap ($1 per roll at Michaels) + turquoise wired ribbon ($4 per roll at Michaels) – for this one, we just punched another hole at the bottom of the tag and used it to thread the ribbon for a different look – easy and cute!  Plus, when you’re not wrapping the ribbon all the way around the package, that roll goes a little further.}

pirate 3{pirate hat gift tag + patterned gift wrap ($1 at Michaels) + cut up fisherman’s netting from the party store – if you cut it into strips, you could get a lot out of one net!}

crown{crown gift tag + leopard gift wrap ($1 per roll at Dollar General) + hot pink tulle ($3 per spool at Michaels)}

turtle wrap{turtle gift tag + white wrapping paper (had on hand) + green dot satin ribbon ($2.50 per roll at Michaels)}

flowers{floral gift tag + pink dot scalloped gift bag ($10 for 10 bags at Michaels) + floral stem (on sale for $4.50 at Michaels, bundle of 8 flowers, which works out to about .55 per stem)

+ dotted satin ribbon ($3 per roll at Michaels) + ivory tissue paper (had on hand)}

So many simple ways to personalize gifts from your kid…and they’re really fun too!  Your kid might just gain a reputation for having the coolest gift wrap around.  Pick out your favorite gift tag HERE and get started!

 

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NEW Personalized Gift Tags for Kids

NEW Personalized Gift Tags for Kids

When we introduced personalized gift tags over the holidays, several customers requested that we do something similar for kids… and now they’re available!  We’ve taken our most popular Kids Stationery themes, added new designs, and created fun birthday greetings for each of them.  They’re available in 15 themes on our website – click the button below to see the designs!

 

Carry On Chico

Carry On Chico

Jon Hart Chicos are great – they’re the perfect size that you can use them for lots of things – makeup, charging cords, medications – the chico is VERY versatile.  You can’t have too many of them, so that makes it the perfect gift for anyone!

Today I’m sharing one of my favorite uses for the Jon Hart Chico – a dedicated “carry on” Chico!  This is one of my best tips for traveling by air because it makes packing so much easier.  I used to make list after list of what I needed to remember to pack, and inevitably I would forget something small that I wished I had.  Now, I keep all of my favorite little “in-flight” needs packed and ready to go in a Chico.  I never have to remember to pack “all the things” – I just have to replenish anything that I’ve used up and grab the bag and GO.

Here’s what I keep stocked in my “carry on” Chico:

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  • tissues
  • ear buds
  • gum
  • Tide to go stick
  • ear plugs
  • lip balm
  • a pen (and usually sticky notes too)
  • cough drops
  • hand sanitizer
  • tea and honey

Handy, right?  I think so!  It’s actually a gift I love to give as well – and the concept doesn’t have to only be for frequent flyers.  You could fill a Chico with dance or cheerleading must-haves:  bobby pins, mini hair spray, lipstick, glitter, breath mints, etc. and hot stamp “team work” or “game face” on the outside.   You could also fill a Chico with orchestra needs:  extra strings, resin, a polishing cloth, etc.  That would be fun to stamp with “strings things”.  This would be a great idea for teachers too – they always need little “emergency kits” for the classroom… The possibilities are endless!

The Chico is available in lots of colors, and we can hot stamp a name, initials (or specific phrase like mine) in about 3 days.  It’s a great gift for $34 (and it would be even more cute if you pre-filled it with some of their favorite necessities before gifting it).  What do you think?  Who do you know that could enjoy a dedicated Chico?  Let us know – we’d love to hook you up with this clever gift idea!

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Valentine’s Day Brunch for Dinner

Valentine’s Day Brunch for Dinner

For this semester’s Barque Team get-together, I thought it might be fun to have “Brunch for Dinner”.  The benefits would be twofold – a great way for my girls to sample a few of our food products (like buttermilk biscuit mix and local jams)… and second,  I thought it would be easy to cook on a weeknight!

In this post, you’ll get a behind-the-scenes look at the invitation, party details, decorations, menu and party favors – plus an idea you can borrow to spark great conversation at your own Valentine’s Day gathering!

brunch invite

bday mantle

vintage vtines

Since I love Valentine’s Day, I thought that would be an easy theme to work with.  I utilized my collection of vintage Valentines to add a little interest to my mantle.

dunce

For the table, I used lots of layering – starting with a simple white tablecloth, then adding a length of sheer pink fabric (on clearance at Joann’s), followed by heart-shaped cut outs and doilies.  To finish it off, more vintage valentines strewn about (some on tiny easels) and a sprinkling of conversation heart candies.  For added ambiance, I combined a few tall white candles with strings of battery-operated, mini copper lights (a new arrival at the store).

vday table 3

bday table

For each place setting, alternating pink and red napkins (folded in the shape of a heart) were adorned with a hand-lettered doily as a place card.  The talented @kelseylaineholt (check her out on Instagram!) made them for us – as well as the food/drink labels – and they really made the tablescape swoon-worthy, don’t you think?

doiliesBefore guests got settled in, everyone was asked fill out 2 “Conversation Hearts”. This idea was inspired by Darcy Miller’s new book, Celebrate Everything – and it ended up being one of the favorite parts of the evening for all of us.  HERE is a link to a free printable with the instructions, which can easily be displayed in a basic 4×6 frame.

You can download the conversation heart templates HERE and HERE – just print them out on pastel colored cardstock and cut out by hand.convo hearts

We collected the completed hearts in a fish bowl, and they later became our dinner conversation starters!  It was really fun to try to guess who each heart belonged to – and it sparked great conversation!  We learned a lot about one another (and laughed a lot too).

hearts

The menu consisted of traditional breakfast food – eggs (heart-shaped of course), bacon, sausage, turkey bacon, buttermilk biscuits (see our tips for those here), local jams from Kelle B, fruit, yogurt (with heart sprinkles), and a modified version of Bobby Flay’s Rosemary and Pancetta Home Fries (from the cookbook Brunch at Bobby’s).  To be honest, I’ve made this recipe before and it was delicious, but I must have done something wrong this time – oops!  It didn’t work out as I had planned, so it became mashed the potatoes with rosemary and pancetta mixed in – sometimes you have to improvise!

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food

We tested out a recipe from the Forest Feast Gatherings Cookbook for the bar – Ruby Mimosa Punch – and it was quite tasty!

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brunch babes napsI think a party always needs a favor, and for this one, each of the girls received a ball cap (monogrammed with the Barque logo), a box of conversation hearts, a mini jar of Kelle B Jam, and a Butter London nail polish.  I love how the personalized tags turned out too!party favorsCorny or not, the tags are true – I really do love these girls!  They’re a great bunch, and I’m so blessed to have each one of them working with me.  The best part is I think they genuinely enjoy one other too – It’s not often you can work and play together and enjoy so much laughter.

staff pic smAren’t they they cutest?

teamI hope our Team “Dinner” inspires a few ideas for your own Valentine’s (or Galentine’s) Brunch, and if it does, we’d love to know about it!  Tag us on Instagram  (@barquegifts) or email us photos – we love to see how our friends and customers throw a party!

 

 

 

 

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Valentine’s Day Lockers

Valentine’s Day Lockers

Love is in the air… and for our customers, we hope it’s in their mailboxes too!  This LOVE-ly locker renovation is inspired by mail for and from your significant other – no matter what you call them!

Here’s a brief behind-the-scenes of our latest locker renovation.

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Step 1:  It all begins with a vintage pink wooden chair (discovered at the Round Top Antiques Fair – score!) and a vintage mailbox (from an estate sale).

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Step 2:  Add a handful of gorgeously hand-lettered love letters (done by our talented @kelseylaineholt – check her out on Instagram).  You can’t tell in the photo, but we glued these onto a small piece of cardboard so they would stay in place.

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Step 3:  Add more letters, piled (and glued) on top of a crumpled piece of paper.

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Step 4:  Add more envelopes to the wall so they look like an “explosion” from the mailbox.

Step 5:  Step back and enjoy how cute and adorable your display is!  (Seriously, this is one of our favorite locker renovations yet – LOVE LOVE LOVE how it turned out!  Thanks Kelsey!!!)

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New Year’s Eve Lockers

New Year’s Eve Lockers

Our lockers are ready for 2017… and so are we!

We’re thankful that 2016 has been a great year for us, but we’re looking forward to even more fun in the New Year.  Thanks for all of your love and support – I appreciate you guys letting me live this little dream of mine every day!

Happy New Year!  Wishing you and yours all the best in 2017!

– Kandice