48 Hours in Palm Springs


pool necessities | A Fabulous Fete

FINALLY, it's here. Every. Single. Time... I go to Palm Springs, I always say (to myself) I need to do a recap. There are a lot of little gems, and more well known ones, and every time we go it seems like there is something new to see. I get a lot of questions on where to stay, where to eat, and while I won't cover it ALL in this one post.. we will get there;) 

Last week we drove out to the desert to celebrate my husband's bday. We ended up hitting all of the usual (ie. popular, the ones you will most likely find all over the internet), but whatevs. It's hard to take a chance on a new place when you know the ones you visit regularly are REALLY good. I'm not a big risk taker, obviously... especially when it comes to food.

We stayed at the Alcazar. It was our first time here. We had driven by, it looked cute from the outside, and honestly... it was easy on the wallet so, BOOKED. It was totally cute and a very instagram friendly place (white walls covered in vines, palm trees and a sleek little pool). It was located right downtown which was really nice. It was also located directly behind one of our favorite restaurants, Birba, and Cheeky's. Very convenient. We didn't get in our car once since it was close to everything, but they also had bikes that you could take out for the day. We most definitely did, we needed a ride to brunch after all. There are places that top this hotel on my list, but I would consider going back one day. I'll list more of my favorite places to stay at the end!

Palm Springs Mountain View | A Fabulous Fete
vine covered walls | A Fabulous Fete
Oversized succulents | A Fabulous Fete
Lunching at the colony palms | A Fabulous Fete

We walked to the Colony Palms Hotel for lunch. I've been here once for breakfast as well and it's always been delicious, easy to get into (NO waiting like a lot of places!) and has the cutest scenery. Come here for a meal, and don't wear a jacket like I did, sitting outside is the best party but you'll most likely melt if it isn't December;) The Colony Palms is also on our list of places to stay and I WILL find a reason, soon.

The Alcazar, Palm Springs | A Fabulous Fete

The courtyard at the hotel, super cute twinkle lights came on at night along with their waterfall/fire pit which was the perfect place to have a glass of wine.

people watching in palm springs | A Fabulous Fete

This place... I had never been but immediately spotted a sign that said ROSÉ and noticed their adorable marble bistro tables. Sold. They also served coffee, but this is now on my list of stops when you're cruising downtown and need to stop for a drink that isn't in a crowded bar. Plus who doesn't like to people watch? (i will update with a link once i remember what it was called;)

a few of our favorite spots in palm springs | A Fabulous Fete

Cocktails at Birba. Post pool, pre dinner, one of the perks of staying right behind it. If anyone asks where to eat, this is 100% the first place I recommend. Their menu is always fresh and delicious, the atmosphere is fun (if you can get it, def make a reservation here) and they serve wine in cups like they do in Italy. I have no idea why but I love this. #weird

Palm Springs, what to do | A Fabulous Fete
The best way to get around in palm springs | A Fabulous Fete
Favorite part of vacay, coffee in bed | A Fabulous Fete

I love sitting in bed with coffee on vacay. Ryan's an early bird, so there's usually some waiting by the time I wake up. But when we're in PS, we usually head over to Koffi. Of course, their coffee is really good, but they have the cutest courtyard outside behind the shop. Lots of locals bring their dogs there and let them run around in the grass. I love relaxing their before we head back to our hotel.

DRESS c/o Tobi || SWEATER

Where to lounge in Palm Springs | A Fabulous Fete
flowy dresses in ps | A Fabulous Fete

These flowy dresses are perfect for by the pool, wearing to brunch, or dressing up with some heels;)

DRESS || SHOES

koffi, palm springs | A Fabulous Fete
pool views at the alcazar in palm springs | A Fabulous Fete
mini cactus garden | A Fabulous Fete
Weekending necessities | A Fabulous Fete

So, you have 48 hours in PS? Here's what we did if you need some suggestions (in order!):

  • Checked in at the Alcazar
  • Lunch at the Colony Palms when you arrive
  • Drinks + dinner at Birba
  • The next morning, we always brunch at Pinocchio (disclaimer: this is not your typical, hip brunch scene. expect cheap bottomless mimosas, a big plate of diner style food, and good entertainment)
  • Make your own cocktails and take them to the pool! (A lot of hotels make you buy them from the bar, another reason to love the alcazar, byob!)
  • Dinner at Mr. Lyons (sit in the lounge for small plates, a more casual vibe, and lower $$$)
  • The next morning, stop by Cheeky's for an amaze breakfast and head home.

One of the questions I get asked most is where to stay. Here are a few of the places we've stayed and why we love them:

  • The Wesley: This is probably my favorite. It's basically a renovated complex that used to be studios. There are only 8 or 9 units in the entire space that surround the pool, lounge, and bbq areas. Each one comes with a mini kitchen/fridge where you can fully whip up a meal, a private patio and your own bbq. PLUS, you can bring your dogs! We always stay here and love it.
  • The Ace: You will be so very hipster if you stay here. Complete with concrete floors, beds on the ground, and fresh cocktails. I kid, but it's def where you will find the younger crowd and a happening pool. Don't stay here if you want your quiet time;) We love the private patios a lot of the rooms offer, the communal areas with outdoor couches, and the tasty cocktails they offer as well as a yum breakfast. You don't really ever have to leave here! And, again, it's dog friendly!
  • The Riviera: your larger scale, budget friendly, but still totally cute, hotel. I stayed here for a bach party and we had so much fun. The pool is FULL in the summer, soooo.. cool if you like a party, not cool if you want your space. Their restaurant has a good brunch and the rooms are pretty cute. Not to mention they are typically one of the cheaper resorts on the list!
  • The Saguaro: We have stayed here a few times as well. You've seen it's bright colors all over instagram and pinterest, which this hotel is famous for. I tend to like the simple or bohemian vibes in other places, but if you're looking for a place with a really fun pool/bar and something that is perfect for your colorful photoshoots and instagrams, this is it. And similar to the riviera, it's easy on the wallet.
  • Airbnb: We've gotten a couple of houses, and I will say... if you have a group of 6 or more, this is 100% the way to go. There are killer houses for under $300 everywhere when you pick the right dates. So, you have your friends, your bar, and a private pool, all in one place! The obviously vary per the date, but this has been my favorite!

Happy Palm Springs planning!

Taupe Letterpress Save the Dates for an Earthy Montana Wedding


Taupe letterpress wedding suite | A Fabulous Fete

Last month we had the pleasure of designing with C + P to create a simple yet impactful Save the Date that perfectly represented their upcoming wedding in the mountains of Montana. I'm always a sucker for a dose of contrast when it comes to design, so when we started chatting about the mix of earthy illustrations and luxe letterpress I knew it was going to be a stunning project. 

I shot a few photos as we were assembling and packing them up and wanted to share them here! Details are below on the individual pieces of this project.

Watercolor and letterpress wedding suite | A Fabulous Fete
Hand lettered semi-custom save the dates | A Fabulous Fete
Letterpress wedding suite + hand painted envelope liners | A Fabulous Fete
Simple taupe letterpress save the date | A Fabulous Fete
Semi-custom suites by A Fabulous Fete
Taupe letterpress wedding save the dates with kraft and white envelopes | A Fabulous Fete
Save the dates with brush lettering and letterpress | A Fabulous Fete
Letterpress details | A Fabulous Fete

So what was included in the package for these Save the Dates?

  • Semi-custom Save the Date design where we mixed brush hand lettered elements with our signature sans-serif font. The bride knew she wanted to go with letterpress, so we decided on the bright white double thick cotton paper to really make the simple design shine. A taupe shade was chosen to tie back to the woodsy liner design.
  • We illustrated custom liners with several fun watercolor trees.
  • The envelopes were pressed with the return address we created (with a combo of hand lettered names + their address in the same font from the suite) in white foil.
  • Each envelope was hand addressed in white brush lettering using one of our standard layouts emphasizing the names and block printing each address in all caps.

Looking for something similar? You can contact us via the button below for more info on pricing and details on working together!

How to Make Black Watercolor Notecards | DIY


Make your own watercolor stationery | A Fabulous Fete

For our holiday party at the end of last year, I wanted to add a handmade element to the gifts I was giving to everyone. I new it had to be paper + had to involve watercolor. BUT, I also wanted it to be simple enough that it would mesh well with everyone's style. So I dreamed up a pink version of these guys (you can see a little peek of them here). They were so easy, but really beautiful (I think), so I wanted to share with you guys how to make them for yourselves. I think they would be great for lots of things... personal stationery, gifts, party favors, place cards, table numbers, tags if you made them on a smaller scale... EVERYTHING. Like, who hates watercolor? NO ONE.

Black watercolor notecard DIY | A Fabulous Fete
How to customize plain stationery  | A Fabulous Fete
A five minute DIY to add interest to any of your plain stationery | A Fabulous Fete

I started with some double thick paper I had cut here. Mine was 260 lb. but I also found some 200 lb. here. If you aren't going to use a super thick paper like this, definitely be sure you are using a quality watercolor stock like THIS or THIS. If you use plain cardstock, it will warp and your end result will not be a nice flat card.

I used a round brush, size 12 and black winsor & newton watercolor. Add water to your color in a dish. Test on a scrap piece of paper. You will want the result to still be pretty opaque as you'll see in the image above on the left. Make a line of the black all the way across the bottom of the card then clean your brush.

How to create an ombre watercolor wash | A Fabulous Fete

After you have cleaned any excess watercolor off of your brush, dip it back into the water and paint another line, above the black line you just painted, barely touching the two.

Create your own watercolor stationery in just a few steps | A Fabulous Fete

Continue moving up the card using ONLY WATER, about 1 to 2 inches depending on how big your card is. As you add water and touch the original black watercolor line you made at the bottom, it will bleed up into the new brush strokes, creating an ombre effect.

Once your color is moving up towards the top, lay flat to dry. You can go back in with the tip of your brush at this point and pull a bit of the black up and create the little "bursts" you see below. The key here is to only use the tip of your brush to lightly move color around. Adding any more full brush strokes will just mix all of the color together. 

Make sure you have lots of pieces to practice on first. And use a light hand! After a few you'll realize it's a pretty delicate process that gets better as it dries. So take your time;)

Minimal black watercolor stationery DIY | A Fabulous Fete
Make your own watercolor stationery as a gift or party favor | A Fabulous Fete

Wrap with a bit of ribbon or thread once they are dry! They make a really great gift to have on hand, and are also kind of relaxing to make;)

If you guys make these I'd love to see!

Tag me on insta @afabulousfete and/or #afabulousfete

Supplies: