A Noteworthy Housewarming Party Checklist

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. The following content is intended for readers who are 21 or older. #Chardonnation #SpringWine #CollectiveBias

I shared a progress report on our new home in Nashville a few months back. As much as we travel it's always so incredible to be able to come home to a place that feels fully, well, us. In that post I shared what we'd done so far, what we still had remaining and ways you could incorporate similar ideas. 

Since then we've decided it's time to truly start sharing our space with friends. It will be a year in August since we bought this house, and it's my intention to finally have a house warming party before that year anniversary. I've started working on the plans. Music is such a big part of our lives so we're considering a music theme of course ๐Ÿ’๐Ÿผ maybe come dressed as your favorite musician or something like that... themes are always so much fun right (and it's a good excuse to wear a Grand Ol' Opry style get up or go full rockstar right!?).

Outdoor picnic with Notable Wine
For our party we've partnered with Notable Wines, you can learn all about the brand at the close of this post, btw! I was thrilled to partner with Notable, I'm a wine lover, and it's a brand that's refined, expressive and accessible too - perfect for a musician x boho style girl's house warming. ๐Ÿ˜Š

As someone who loves to create checklists, as we plan our event I thought I'd share with you guys the step by step for creating your dream house warming party, and honestly, this list applies to any party you might be having in your home! So here we go:

1. The Plan

Determine what type of party you're going to have, and communicate the details in the invite. Is it a day party? A wine and cheese night? Are you having a sit down dinner in which the guests should all arrive at a specific time. The size and scope of the event will determine how far in advance you need to start planning and likely, your level of stress will depend on that too. We'll be having an afternoon party that will spill from the indoors to out. We've got a big yard at our house and we want to take advantage of that.

2. The Invites

Here's your opportunity to really specify what's happening. I went to a party this week in which the invite was sent via text message, it was a funny little meme sort of thing. The invite made it clear that the event would be casual and maybe get a little wild even. I loved it.

If you're having a sit down dinner perhaps, a formal invite is likely the route, and there are plenty of online services in which you can create a custom mailable invite that feels formal too. For our party we're intending on the event to be drop by - to have the party flow along throughout the afternoon and we will be keeping it casual. Our house isn't very large, so we don't want to cram everyone in all at once. We'll reserve our sit down dinner nights for smaller groups. 

3. Prep Your Space

Stock up on things you could possibly run out of. Wine (obviously), ice, toilet paper, napkins, and when you think you've got plenty, maybe buy a little bit extra. Other things to consider, if it's raining, where will you host the guests, and what will you need if that's the case? If it's summer, what's the bug situation? Perhaps get a few extra citronella candles and bug spray if you'll have your guests outdoors. 

Amelia's Flower Truck Nashville
Hanging Bohemian Chair
notable wines party

At our house we'll definitely be bringing the outdoors in, and vice versa. For our party I'll be making a stop at my favorite flower truck and the garden center to fill every corner with beautiful blooms and succulents. 

4. Create Seating Arrangements

Bohemian Home Ideas

If you're having a dinner party be sure to have a few extra chairs in case extra guests arrive (who knew your bf's bestie was bringing his new girl?! Yep, I've definitely had that happen). If you're having a more casual event, little seating vignettes will make it comfortable for people to settle in to conversation wherever they are throughout your house. 

Bohemian Home Ideas

5. Service Strategy

No matter which type of party you're having you'll likely serve food and drink in courses, or maybe you'll give your guests the option of self serving. If there's a specific area of your house you'd like to show off that's where you want the beverage cart, for example. If you're going to have a seated meal, perhaps appetizers are served on your porch to show off the view. Think about where you'd like the guests to congregate and set up there.

Musician's Living Room

6. Set the Mood with Music

I'm obviously a music lover, and as I mentioned for our party there will be a music theme, however no matter the theme be sure to have a playlist! We love vinyl records, and they're a ton of fun, however, someone will need to be in charge of flipping the records if you intend to go that route. You might have a friend that likes that job and if so, go for it. I always like to have a back up playlist for a variety of moods just in case. 

7. Give the Grand Tour

For your housewarming, or even if it's just the first time guests have been over, give them a look around when they arrive. Like I said, our house is small, however, rather than guests feeling as if they need to peak around and sleuth out the bathroom, give a little tour and perhaps show off what you've done to the place already. In our case, we still have renovations to complete, so on our tours I'll share the big vision too... nothing wrong with sharing what's to come!

8. Document The Details

Obviously everyone loves a good instagram moment so go ahead and set those up, and then perhaps place a few disposable cameras around for guests to snap photos too. It's funny how taking photos can get people in a festive mood, and it'll create memories. At our house we have a little bowl where we stash our photos, and looking back through them always makes me smile.
Instax Photos

9. Share Your Gratitude

It goes without saying, if someone brings a gift, be sure to send a note! An extra little touch: scan some of the photos from the event and send those in your thank you card. 

So there we have it! That's my checklist! If you're interested in learning a bit more about Notable read on! Big thank you to the brand for sharing these beautiful Chardonnays with me!


Notable is the 1st and only wine that highlights the flavor profiles on the front of the bottle, helping make the wine aisle a less confusing place.

What I loved about Notable Chardonnay is the label detail. Wines vary in style, region and taste of course, the Notable label describes the flavor notes elegantly, so you know what you're getting. I brought a bottle to a friend's party the other night, and she commented that she loves a crisp & fruity white, and specifically citrus flavors, so voila! She immediately knew she'd like this one - the label specified that exactly! When Ben and I tried the other tasting profile, he preferred the oaky & buttery profile of the California Chardonnay. We paired it with a vegetable pasta dish and it was divinely perfect.  


I can't wait to finally put this list in action, I'll let you all know how the party goes, and of course, follow along on instagram

Wanderfully yours,

Andi


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Work in Progress: Creating Our Bohemian Abode on A Budget

Hi wanderful friends! 

As most of you know Ben and I moved into our new house in Nashville at the end of 2016. The story of finding this little home was kind of wild. Ben was out on tour, I was in New Orleans finishing writing my book that's coming this fall and between all of that we each had a limited window of time to actually be in Nashville to find our new home. 

Our realtor was a dream. Juliana, referred to us by a musician friend of Bens, totally understood our lives. She went above and beyond, doing house tours with us over FaceTime, riding on the back of her husband's motorcycle while filming the whole neighborhood to show us the area, and making sure we'd find a place with enough space for Ben to have a music studio, me to have a quiet writing space, plus a yard for a garden and a porch for dining al fresco.

We wanted a place that was a bit remote, so we could feel that we were checking out a bit when we're home. Not an easy feat, however, she pulled it off.

So many of you have sent sweet emails as well as notes through instagram (I've shared quite a bit of our space on my stories) - and quite a few of you have asked for a little tour of our home. Honestly, I'm not intending to share that until later this summer - we're having the house photographed then, and we have SO much to do to truly feel like it's finished (is it ever really though?!). 

HOWEVER! I decided this week that I'd go ahead and share what we've done so far! This is a serious work in progress. 

Full disclosure (that means no judging me!): all of these photos were snapped on my iPhone, and like I said, we still have so much to do! 

I'm sharing 3 rooms here. Our bathroom is about to undergo a serious renovation and the music room is Ben's man cave (i.e. it's literally covered in music gear and you don't want to see it yet I promise)!

I've got notes about ways to create each space on a budget, what we've done so far and what's remaining. I've also included links to items that will help you create a similar vibe for each room if you're interested (and for the most part I've sourced things that are truly budget friendly)! 

Room 1: The Gathering Room

In a normal setting this would be the dining room. The reality for us is that there's just two of us and when we have friends over for meals it's more about throwing cushions on the floor, gathering around the farm table, with lots of music playing from either the record player or the upright piano and guitars.

What we've done: Ben had so many music posters from his tours, and I've got trinkets from travels so this room felt like the perfect place to combine our passions. On the left side of the room is an area for hanging out, including Ben's upright piano with memorabilia from shows and travels. 

On the right side is our dining area. We found a farm table at a local antique mall and loaded up the shelf on the right with the cameras we both collect. 

What we need to do: We still need to complete this space with window treatments and we're committed to updating further with a comfy and chic sofa that friends can truly all pile in on. We're adding plants to every room on the regular too, it's a cheap way to warm a space up and is good for you too!

new orleans art.jpg

Of course, we had to include little touches of New Orleans throughout our home. In the hallway leading into the kitchen I've framed a few of my photos and included this map of New Orleans. The print is on museum-quality matte paper, and the company has so many location options!

I personally have a serious map obsession, I've got vintage maps that will be going in our living room and old atlases piled there too. 

The designers at Modern Map Art clearly have that same obsession. 

Budget tip: I still need to have this print framed (I have soooooo much framing to do) however, in the meantime I've used these little skeleton binder clips to hang mine. I've done that in several rooms where I've got art that hasn't yet been framed. 

Shop this room:

Room 2: The Meditation Room (i.e. our Bedroom!)

Ben and I agreed that we wanted our bedroom to feel serene and dreamy. (Well maybe I used those words however, he agreed with the idea!). We also wanted it to feel worldly and needed a bit of extra space for my wardrobe. We're lucky to have lots of real estate in this room. We LOVE the fireplaces we have throughout this house and often I turn this room into my own little meditation sanctuary too. 

What we've done: The walls are filled with hats we've each collected, an old clothing rolling rack from my wardrobe styling days works as extra closet space and I decided to invest about $500 for pillows for this room and the living room and am so glad that I did!

What we need to do: This is another room where the windows need some love, and I truly hung this gallery wall in about 5 minutes. We've got photographs we've taken on our travels that need to be framed and hung with a bit more intention than my first go at it! To further the sanctuary vibes theres some touches that need to be expanded on too.

Budget tip: If you don't have a headboard (which we didn't have when I snapped these photos): pile on the pillows. We've got 8 pillows that live on this bed (and you can get them for much less than what I spent), with the largest in the back acting as a pseudo-headboard. 

Shop this room:

Room 3: The Living Room

This room is truly my favorite! Most of the furniture was sourced at local antique shops, and much of the art came from my home in New Orleans.

What we've done: Loads of antique-ing! I love the idea of super modern art paired with antique-y finds. The green velvet couch was less than $1000 at a local antique mall. The Bill Murray (which we get asked about all the time!) is from Baton Rouge artist TJ Black.

What we need to do: We still need to hang drapes in this room too, there's actually a large window facing our porch that's not pictured that needs some love, and we're on the hunt for a larger coffee table and better end tables. In the meantime however, it's truly a space that makes me smile everyday. 

Budget tip: The bar cart is actually a Costa Rican flower cart, and we found it for just at $100, it's something you could DIY to get a similar look! 

Shop the room:

I hope you guys have enjoyed this little tour! I promise to share the "real" photos once we finish everything. I love having a space that combines my interests and Ben's. I also wanted our home to feel livable and inviting. I feel like we're well on the way to accomplishing that!

Have a beautiful weekend! 

Wanderfully yours,

Andi

The Only Thing You'll Ever Need

Velvet Everything

One of the things I noticed about Nashville when I first moved here was the trend of "staying in." Not that people don't get together, it's just that rather than going to a bar (very New Orleans, or New York for that matter) to get together, people gather at home. There's often a fire pit and a blanket pile and lots of people cozying up while some super hip band guy strums guitar.

My friend Lauren and I talked about it quite a bit when we each moved here: are we the type to arrive at a party, kick off our shoes and sit cross-legged in a circle with people we've never met?

Ben and I went to a New Year's party... it was 100% THAT. We weren't quite ready to dive in, so we took a seat on a sofa off to the side of the room and slowly worked our way into the conversation.  

And then lately, the more I follow along with what's happening in the wellness circles - staying in, drinking tea instead of champagne all night, listening to records on a cozy sofa versus dancing in 6 inch heels at a club... well the hipness of that is on the rise. 

I was reading this post on Well & Good a few days ago and thought, well, there - my thoughts on this are validated. I would rather spend a night at home with a detox mask and 9 hours of sleep versus spend a night party hopping until I fall into bed at 4 a.m. And trust me, I did my fair share of that in my twenties. As my girlfriends and I get a little older I wonder if it's that we truly are more invested in our health and wellness or is it just that we've been there, done that? Or truly, is it that everything we need is right there in front of us?

What do you guys think? 

Either way, I'm finding because it's less often that I do go out into the world I'm having fun with fashion in a new way. Lately I've been doing velvet everything. I've decided if there was one fabric that I had to spend the rest of my days in it would be this one. I'm back on a seventies style kick with a vengeance.

Bells & big lashes. Velvet & high-waists.

In the meantime, hope you all have a wonderful weekend! Whether you're out at the shows until the sun comes up or tucked in with a good book and bundle of sage, enjoy it to it's fullest. 

Wanderfully yours,

Andi