Forget what you’ve heard; any reason is a good reason to throw a party. When I realized that the anniversary of my DIY blog coincided with the 4th of July weekend, I couldn’t think of any other way to celebrate than with a rooftop brunch party. I knew I wanted whatever party I was hosting to reflect the vibe of Essie Does Summer – chic, summery, and bright. 

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Gold-painted balloons, flower arrangements and an ice-bucket with floral ice cubes captured the chic, summery and bright vibe of Essie Does Summer

Prior experience has taught me that picking your party theme/aesthetic is the most important part of party planning; once this is out of the way the event’s colors, food and drink choices, décor, and activities will fall right into place.

Then comes party preparation, or what I like to call: the “fun” part. Party prep really is what you make it; I knew my brunch party was going to be pretty detailed so I gave myself about three weeks to properly prepare for it.

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Decor details like this gold-sprayed (real!) pineapple can add a nice touch to your event.

More casual and less detailed events will definitely require less time—just know your productivity level and go with what works best for you!

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A handwritten drink menu is a great way to personalize your event, and can be made weeks in advance – like this one.

A lot of the prep could be done weeks ahead of time, like crafting the decor, but some of it could only happen on the day of the party. Food, specialty cocktails, and actual party setup had to wait until right before the event.

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There’s nothing good about bad shrimp. Wait until your guests have arrived before putting out food so it doesn’t go bad. P.S. This was some amazing shrimp cocktail especially the cocktail sauce served in a lettuce bowl!

A summer brunch party is fun to prepare for, because your guests aren’t really sure what to expect—so don’t limit yourself!

Life is unpredictable sometimes and you may not be party-ready when you expect to be. And that’s okay. When that happened during my brunch party, I prioritized what was left to do and focused on the most important things. I scratched putting floral straws in each of the glasses, but no one even noticed because of how great everything else was. The food was kept simple but inventive, by only serving a variety of hors d’oeuvres, including my world famous mini chicken and waffles. Champagne was flowing, the music was good, and guests stayed happy and entertained with a DIY photo booth and picture props.

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Fun chalkboard sign showed guests exactly do and got everyone excited to take some pictures

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Chalkboard signs are a great idea for any party, even without a photo booth. You could also consider writing hashtags on these signs for guests to use when uploading their pictures on social media. #essiedoessummer did some mini trending!

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Fun props make for a good time!

Anyone can plan a summer brunch, all you need are some fun ideas. Try to enlist some friends to help you so that everything goes as smoothly as possible on the day of your party—also because it’s tons of fun setting up for a party with friends. Give yourself enough time for planning, preparation and setup, but don’t fret if not all of your plans work out. Most importantly: have fun. It’s a great feeling to see all your ideas and planning come together, and to see your guests enjoying themselves because of your hard work. Go forth and brunch!