I love Stock the Bar parties. Maybe it’s because my friends and I are at the stage where we already have all we need, but I love the idea of starting newlyweds (or nearly weds) off with a fully-stocked home bar instead of more stuff (I know I’d rather have a full bar than a full tupperware cabinet any day). It’s also a great theme for a housewarming party. Every guest brings along a bottle of their favorite liquor as a gift, and by the end of the night the hosts have a full bar to entertain anytime in their new home.
The easiest way to wrap up a bottle of wine or liquor is my usual method: Stash it into a tall gift bag with some festive tissue. But when a friend announced she and her husband were celebrating their new home with a combination Stock the Bar Housewarming and Christmas Party, I knew I had to create something special. Inspired by the classy brown paper bags they dish out at the liquor store, I decided to go hobo-chic and present this bottle of gin inside a stamped paper bag that was rolled down and tied up with pretty striped ribbon.
(By the way, this gin, The Botanist, came highly recommended by my local liquor guy. Apparently the guys at the distillery first set out to make scotch, but they realized that nobody wanted to buy young scotch. Instead of giving up, they switched the plan to making this really wonderful small-batch, aromatic gin.)
To finish it off, I added a handmade gift tag made from a paint chip palette. This is my new go-to gift tag this holiday season because it’s so easy and impressive. Press an inked rubber stamp (this mason jar is my favorite) across a few colors on the paint strip. Then cut it out, punch a hole or add a grommet, then write your message with permanent marker. Taking calligraphy classes is on my bucket list, but until then, I like to practice copying calligraphy and typography from photos on the internet. I just searched for “making spirits bright calligraphy,” found this image and practiced a bit before inking the tag.