Fall Harvest Party

Easy and inspiring autumnal entertaining ideas from Aspen’s most stylish party-throwers

It all began with an inspiration board and a handful of Aspen's best entertaining experts. After a hectic summer events season, the stationers, florists, pastry chefs and event planners were ready to kick back with a celebration of their own. And so they started sharing some of their favorite ideas and inspirations for a fall harvest party on Pinterest. A few weeks (and a few hundred "pins") later, the group brought their best ideas—beautiful invitations, gorgeous florals, sweet bites and rustic-chic décor‚ to the Holden Marolt Ranching and Mining Museum, where they spent a sunny afternoon celebrating the bounty and beauty of autumn in the high country. 

The recipes: sweet bites

The pastry pros at the Roaring Fork Club in Basalt whipped up an enticing array of treats that look as sweet as they taste. Find the recipes here:

Mini Pecan Tarts
Pumpkin Cake with Maple Cream Cheese Icing
Spiced Apple Pie
Ginger Cookies

The decor:

“Rustic, yet simple and elegant.” These were the watchwords Amy Forsey used when designing the custom printed invitations for this fall fête. The owner of Express Yourself, a stationery boutique in Basalt, Colorado, paired thick off-white paper with chocolate-brown lettering that has an antique, hand-washed look. Each invitation is wrapped with twine and accented with a sprig of wheat (available seasonally at grocery stores and florists).

Setting the scene starts with setting the table. To create a down-on-the-farm look, event planners from Bluebird Productions topped a rustic wooden buffet table with a simple woven runner and an eclectic mix of serveware, like a tin cake stand and mason jars, picked up at local thrift and antique stores.

Natural accents add oomph to autumnal floral arrangements. Beth Gill, owner of The Aspen Branch, tucked lilies, roses, mums and berries into vases wrapped with leaves or filled with acorns and apples. Colorful gourds fill in the display. For extra ambiance, tiny gourds were turned into candle holders. To get the look, cut a shallow hole into the top and pop a tealight inside.

Caramel-apple-making kits encourage guests to continue the celebration at home. The burlap sacks are filled with tart apples, caramels, popsicle sticks and cellophane bags filled with chopped nuts and sprinkles for decoration. A custom-printed tag provides the easy instructions.

Charming apple cups are easy to make and fun to drink from: Cut off the very top of each apple, then use a spoon to dig out the core and flesh, leaving at least a quarter-inch rim. Brush the inside of each apple with lemon juice to prevent browning. Cinnamon sticks make perfect straws—and add spice to every sip.

Unexpected printed pieces, like coordinating dessert cards stuck into little log rounds, framed seasonal quotes and goody bag tags “really add a personal touch to the party,” Forsey says. 

Categories: Entertaining