My 60th birthday has come and gone, and all that’s left are the fabulous memories of the ladies luncheon I threw for myself. Yes…I threw my own birthday party! Why? I’m a (retired) professional special event planner. Who else would I put through the torture it would take to make me happy?!! So…here are photos of the June 9 luncheon for 22 of my nearest and dearest in-town friends (all on the guest list were able to attend except one!) who I thank for helping me to celebrate in style!
Invitations were created using clearance stationery from Hobby Lobby. I invited the ladies to drape themselves in jewels to go with the theme! I printed the Marilyn Monroe drawing in the corner of each mailing envelope to complement the insert.
Me in my party dress, trying to emulate Marilyn Monroe’s look in the pic below!
The inspiration for my party dress!
When I go with a theme, I go ALL THE WAY! The backdrop for the opening and closing credits of “Gentlemen Prefer Blondes” gave me inspiration to create this elaborate “wall of diamonds” against a pink satin drape on the deck for photos. I simply used drapery clips to hang the fabric and crystal curtains from TableclothFactory.com on existing cup hooks. It was so unseasonably hot & humid, though, that few pics were actually taken out here. On the other side of the deck I hung 3 mirrored outdoor LED chandeliers from Old Time Pottery that looked so cool blowing in the breeze. I planted all pink flowers for the occasion, a departure from the reds and yellows I generally favor.
Upon entering, the ladies were greeted with 2 WAY oversized hot pink balloons that were originally intended for a display at the end of the driveway. It was so hot & humid, however, I opted to just put them inside so they wouldn’t wilt. The telephone table on the other side was decorated with a “diamond-dotted” rose ball atop a facted pillar. (I’ve done these before for “Should Have Put A Ring On It“.) The foyer table was draped in a “diamond” sash with a pink ribbon accent. I created a Harry Winston/Tiffany’s-inspired window display on the table for dramatic effect. On the walls were pink and black crowns I bought on clearance at Hobby Lobby years ago but have never used. (Another jewel-inspired post worth checking out is “Diamonds Are A Material Girl’s Best Friend“)
We didn’t have a lot of time to get pics, but this is the dining room seating area. (Because ALL but one of the invited guests accepted, I had to create 2 separate-but-complementary dining environments.) This table is draped in a black crinkle taffeta tablecloth with a silver sequin runner, “diamond” sash, pink ribbon, and mirrored trays beneath the centerpiece of tall gooseneck vases visually joined by a garland of crystal and lots of flowers in faceted vases. (I created 19 total fresh flower arrangements!!!) The buffet behind the table is similarly dressed with another jewelry display. My sweet friend, Cindy, was so gracious as to lend me chiavari chairs for this room which I tied in with the other room by threading through a pink crinkle taffeta sash with a “diamond” cuff. I found the cute poodle art on the sconces on clearance at…you guessed it!…Hobby Lobby. Some may remember the poodle from “French Poodle“, the jewelry display pieces from “Breakfast at Tiffany’s“, the mirror treatment from “Ain’t Misbehavin’ – Celebrating Mom’s 89th Birthday Gatsby Style“, the Princess In Pink signage from “Princess Pink Birthday“, and the faceted & mirrored centerpiece trays from “Happy Birthday, Barf!“.
The family room dining table was constructed using two 6-ft. folding tables to create more of a square shape. I draped them in hot pink/fuschia crinkle taffeta tablecloths and ran black sequin runners and “diamond” sashes crosswise. Towering glass vases (I taped a hanging facet on the underside at the top!) filled with “loose diamonds” and connected by crystal garland loom over faceted vases filled with roses, mini carnations, tulips, astilbe, white calcynia, variegated pittosporum and hypericum berries. I left some of the faceted vessels empty so as not to overcrowd the table. The bulbous structures in the last photo are simply one vase atop another. Ballroom chairs with black slipcovers are dressed in the same sashes and “diamond” cuffs as in the dining room. The place settings are slightly different with a double stack of chargers – white rhinestone-studded acrylic and hot pink Bormioli Rocco glass – and black napkins instead of pink. (TIP: If you have a behemoth television in the room, make lemonade from that lemon by showcasing photos or playing a movie – on mute, of course! – that relates to the party theme. For my luncheon, “Gentlemen Prefer Blondes” was perfect!)
I created the menus using the same stationery as the invitations, strategically affixing tiny rhinestones for a bit more glitz. Each menu was outfitted with a sparkling “diamond” brooch.
The weather demanded that we move the bar in off the deck. My friend Rachael stepped in as bartender for the afternoon before joining the other guests at the table. Good ol’ Geoffrey beckoned guests to come grab a cocktail.
The mantel is simply dressed with more of the facted vessels, some topped with rhinestone studded hot pink rose balls.
My wonderfully talented friend Patrick created the glitzy almond-vanilla cake that I further decorated with a couple of the same brooches as used on the menus. (We also served my famous carrot/”karat” cake for the occasion!)
Dessert course was served with these cute black paper napkins fashioned to look like a black party dress. I saw the idea on Pinterest and couldn’t resist! That’s two hours out of my life I’ll never get back, but totally worth it for the fun factor! And speaking of fun factor…
Pink and black paper fans for cooling down or just looking ultra fem!…
…rhinestone studded fortune cookies created by my sister…
…a fun game called “Who Knows Alycia Best?” where Rachael won for having the most and Dixie won for having the fewest correct answers, and this was Dixie’s hilarious reaction!…
…pink raspberry lemonade “diamond” ice cubes served directly to the table…
…and the take home favors of assorted popcorn flavors from Popcorn Heaven tucked into black velvet bags and prominently displayed in a large silver compote! (Variations of the compote are at “Finally Fall“, “Cranberry Christmas – Square“, “Cranberry Christmas – Long Table“, and “Roses In October“.)
I know this post was super photo heavy, but I always include lots and lots of details in every event I create. If you’d like to see other fun photos from the party, keep on scrolling!
Thanks for stopping in to celebrate the big 6-0 with me and my fabulous pink posse!!!
Such a class act!
Jeff and Meghan were wonderful servers for the day!!!
With my sister, Berishia, who looked so nice in her breezy outfit, and her daughter/my niece, Yvonne, who always rises to the occasion when bling is involved!
My oh-so-elegant neighbor, Leslie, and her equally chic Mom, Dixie (as Ramon photo bombs the pic trying to escape all the estrogen in the house!)
My friend and hair stylist/magician of 25 years, Dorothy
Good friends Ebony (another decorator/event planner!), Audrey, and Ty (organizers after my own heart!)
High school mates/lifelong friends Joan and Audrey
Friend/neighbor/drinkin’ buddy, Kerry who I simply adore!
Neighbors/Friends Lori and Vicky who are so skinny I just HATED taking a picture with them!!! 🙂
My dear, sweet, supremely elegant friend Marchita who means the world to me!
The stylish matriarchs – Senator Mom and Aunt “Bean Bean Dancing Machine”
I cannot tell you how much I love this woman! Ladies and gentlemen…the fabulous Carla!!!
Ever-fashionable Mom and daughter duo, Barbara and Rachael!
Melanie in her Holly Golightly “Breakfast at Tiffany’s” outfit!!!
Jane took it to the hilt looking positively radiant with her Marilyn Monroe look, while my gorgeous Mary Ellen played it sleek & understated. I LOVE all the different ways my friends interpreted the theme!!!
Best friend, Sheri, and me in PJs, enjoying a well-deserved and much needed glass of wine after the party. Cheers!
This week I’m joining Susan at Between Naps on the Porch for “Tablescape Thursday“, Beverly at How Sweet the Sound for “Pink Saturday“, the ladies at “Celebrate Your Story“, and Linda at Life & Linda for “Dishing It & Digging It“!