Moroccan Birthday Celebration: Part I

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I’m in NYC for the weekend, but couldn’t wait to share the professional pictures we got back on Friday from my husband’s party.  I couldn’t fit everything in, so it’s split into 2 parts.  Enjoy!  xx

The lead up to my husband’s 40th birthday was intense, particularly because I had a ton of DIY projects in mind that I wanted to finish for the party.  I chose the Faux School for the celebration because it was a blank space, but also had a number of unique features, including screens and televisions on all walls to project pictures and videos, exposed brick, two built in bars, colored panels, an entryway medallion, a back room that was separate from the main space (perfect for smoking hukkas), a private driveway leading to the event space (to lay out the Persian rugs), high ceilings with exposed beams, and, best of all, these gorgeous lights.

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The theme was A Moroccan Night in celebration of my husband’s 40th  birthday.  He is also half-Persian, but the main selling point of the theme for me was the exquisite décor and bright colors that went along with it.  My husband is a total extrovert and loves to be the center of attention.  He kept joking throughout the planning process that this was “my party” (in all fairness, I did refer to it as “my party”), but if it were me, I would have steered clear of anything of the sort for myself personally.  But I knew he would love every minute of it, which I think he did.

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277I asked guests to wear white for the party and was shocked that almost everyone did.   I thought that asking people to wear white would help get them into the vibe of our themed party, making it more interactive, but also the pictures look oh so much more coordinated with everyone wearing the same color!   As I wrote in my Father’s Day post, I picked out complementary paisley bow ties for my husband and father-in-law for the occasion.  As of my recent obsession with Gossip Girl, which thankfully has ended, I couldn’t help but coordinate the bow ties with a matching pocket handkerchief for my father-in-law and a turquoise flower lapel pin for my hubby.  I have to say, remembering this detail may have been my finest hour as a wife in our 2 years of marriage.  My dress was by Sue Wong—she is spectacular and has a flair for all things sparkly, feathery, beaded, gold, and dramatic—right up my alley.004

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We got the idea for the picture nook at the Best of Frederick party last year, and had so much fun with it at that affair that I had to have it for our celebration.  I found the sequin gold fabric at JoAnn’s and, because the only piece they had wasn’t big enough (we needed 10 feet by 10 feet for the backdrop), we sewed a satin plum fabric on either side.  I’ve had to do this on one other occasion and both times I’ve been so pleased with the result.  I wouldn’t have thought to blend fabrics in this way (the other time was for curtains), but the textual distinctness looked phenomenal.  The photographer printed the photo right on the spot, put it in a paper frame, and guests took it home with them.  Most people did more than one photo, some by themselves, in groups, or silly variations.

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I also offered little baggies of macaroons as guest gifts tied off with ribbon, but I think everyone enjoyed taking the photos home more—especially the out of town guests we had from NYC, Michigan, Gloucester, and LA—two friends even rearranged the dates they were coming back from Italy to be at the party!  It was especially entertaining seeing the individual photos get crazier and crazier toward the end of the night…155

156Unfortunately, the day of the party there was an air conditioning snafu and the temperature of the room began to reflect the middle east a bit too much.  So, at the last minute, I decided to do a cocktail hour on the driveway outside to give the room an extra hour to cool off.  Laying down the rugs was an idea I had when I was first scheming for the Moroccan theme, and we added a llama to the mix at the last minute, which turned out to be a big hit.  The llama’s handler was also in costume—apparently, the costume was made for the nativity scenes that the llama normally attended at Christmas time, but it fit the occasion superbly.069

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I had planned for the servers to offer champagne with floating berries at the top of the hill as guests arrived but, with the change of plans, I just had them circulate the champagne along with wine and beer, and sweets from the dessert buffets inside.

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After the initial stall due to the indoor climate (and also an unexpected delay by the belly dancer who didn’t have her music), we were finally ready to open the doors and party ….

…..to be continued.

 

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July 22, 2013 - 3:59 pm

ChrystinaNoel - Holy goodness. This is quite the party, it all looks magical!

July 22, 2013 - 5:36 pm

Jessica - thank you my dear, looking forward to seeing what you do for your party this year! :) xx

July 31, 2013 - 3:49 pm

Moroccan 40th Birthday Celebration - […] After a minor air conditioning set-back for my husband’s 40th birthday party, the guests entered the party after a cocktail hour with the llama.  We spent all day setting up the room, and I had been collecting Moroccan decor for about 3 months for the party.  That, combined with what I already had, turned out to be just enough to fill the space.  All of the draping fabric I bought from a local designer who was selling off all of her fabrics wholesale–I also got all of the tablecloths wholesale as well (it turned out to be so much cheaper than renting!). […]

July 20, 2014 - 5:43 pm

Moroccan Birthday Celebration: Part II | fat vegan baby - […] After a minor air conditioning set-back for my husband’s 40th birthday party, the guests entered the party after a cocktail hour with the llama.  We spent all day setting up the room, and I had been collecting Moroccan decor for about 3 months for the party.  That, combined with what I already had, turned out to be just enough to fill the space.  All of the draping fabric I bought from a local designer who was selling off all of her fabrics wholesale–I also got all of the tablecloths wholesale as well (it turned out to be so much cheaper than renting!). […]

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