We are throwing our Mother a party for her 80th birthday in May. I talked about some ideas for the color scheme for the party HERE Now, I want to talk about other party decor ideas. At Christmas time, I organized my parents' house a bit and put their old pictures in photo boxes which gave me the idea that we should use the photos for her big birthday party somehow. I am a sentimental sap. I come from a line of saps. My mom, sisters and I cannot see someone cry alone. We have to cry with them. I refer to us as "lloronas" (Spanish for crying women) a lot. I think being sentimental and nostalgic is in our DNA. So, for our mother's 80th birthday party, I think going sentimental is a must. The following ideas struck a nice sentimental chord in me.
|WALL DECOR. Since I just went thru 80+ years worth of pictures over Christmas, I know we easily have enough photos to copy in black and white and form an "80" as a wall decoration at our mom's party to copy this look Source: Pinterest, but sadly I couldn't find the original entry because it looks like a great party. On Pinterest, pic was attributed once to http://cakeslikesaparty.com and another time to http://joannagoddard.blogspot.com/|
|PHOTOS IN THE CENTERPIECES. My original idea for the pictures was to use them on the tables as part of the centerpieces. I couldn't find an image of what I was imagining exactly, but basically, instead of the type of floral picks being used above for table numbers, I imagined us using double-sided pictures of our mother with the guests at that table and sticking them into the floral centerpiece. We could frame the pictures out in black or a coordinating color and then each guest would see a picture of themselves with our mom. I thought that would be very personal and do-able, because the tables will likely be grouped by different aspects to my mother's life (relatives, co-workers, people she knows thru church etc.) so each table could have a different theme. I was thinking the table with her relatives could have pictures of our mom as a child, for example, and the one with co-workers, could have pictures of different work projects or the place where they all worked, so it would also be a stroll down memory lane for the guests at the table. It would also give them something to talk about as soon as they sat at the table. Above image source: http://www.weddingchicks.com/gallery/esther/?nggpage=2&pid=27829|
|DOLLAR STORE FRAME. Ever since Reba mentioned using photos as place cards, I've been keeping my eye out for frames that would work. I saw some white ceramic ones with stands at IKEA that are like $1.50 each and I saw silver plated ones like the one above at the Dollar Store. I mentioned in my post, Romancing Your Spouse for Under $5 that I had bought the frame for something else. Well, now you know, I bought it to show Reba the frame in case we used this idea. It would be a lot of work to find photos of all the guests to do this. And it would be time consuming to print out 200+ pics and put them in frames, but I think they biggest obstacle is getting pics of all the guests to do it.|
|PHOTO TABLE MARKERS. I saw these 25 photo table marker blocks pinned on Pinterest for $150 and thought they were cute. They seem to have gone up to $175 on the Etsy shop where they are sold. If you're interested, they are being sold HERE|
|PHOTO LANTERNS. I think the above photo centerpieces would be amazing as part of a table display. The above image was found on Pinterest, attributed to google, which sent me to http://boards.weddingbee.com/topic/need-help-making-these|
|MARTHA STEWART CRAFT. Based upon the forum discussion on the first photo lantern picture, it seems the idea originally came from Martha Stewart and this project. The above image and detailed instructions how to use vellum paper to make the lanterns can be found at: http://www.marthastewart.com/267514/photo-centerpiece|
|WALK DOWN MEMORY LANE VIGNETTES. Our sister, Elsa, suggested we do a slide show for the party. She and our niece, Alex, have made some for celebrations for our parents before. I suggested to Reba that we hire a video person to do interviews with us (meaning my entire immediate family) about both our parents and use some old footage from some awards video presentations where our mom was honored to piece together a bigger, more current presentation for the party. I am still in favor of the video idea, but the picture above, made me think about vignettes for the party. Our parents have a LOT of junk. I wondered if we could set up some vignettes like the one above as decorations to capture different periods in their life together. Maybe not with dresses and stuff, although, come on, wouldn't that be interesting and different? And very, very memorable? OTOH, it would be a lot of extra work to do it. Still, our mother saved the dresses she wore to our weddings and we have pictures of her dancing in them with our father and she has some groovy old coats from the 60s and I bet anything she saved other significant outfits out of nostalgic reasons. The funny thing is that it would make use of things she has likely been saving for years without any reason to believe she will use them again. It reminds me a bit of how much my husband enjoyed it when we used old maps and playbills he had been saving in our Living Room Project. Just throwing that idea out there. Source: Pinterest, Idea|
|A SIGN OF LOVE. A Houston, Texas man took out this billboard ad for his wife on their 50th wedding anniversary. Yes, I get a little weepy seeing this grand romantic gesture. Beautiful. I know we could do something like this for our mother, but I honestly don't think she'd like it. I think she would prefer the money be spent on the party. Still, I thought I would mention it because it is a wonderful idea and I think would be a lovely, memorable way to celebrate a big milestone birthday. Image and backstory Source: http://houston.culturemap.com/newsdetail/06-30-11-the-most-romantic-gesture-ever-giant-50th-anniversary-billboard-is-in-the-running/|
|GUESTS CONTRIBUTION. We've already agreed the party is going to be "No Gifts Please" but Reba and I have both talked about how we would like the guests (our parents' nearest and dearest) to participate/contribute to the evening. Someone got guests to contribute a memory letter/notecard to give the birthday honoree at his 60th birthday party. I am pretty sure we could do this and it would make an amazing surprise for my mother. Reba mentioned doing a sign in book for something like this, but I am wondering if giving folks time to bring a picture to the party or give them time to really plan out what they want to write, might not be a good thing. Picture and Idea Source: http://nothingbutbonfires.com|
|NOTECARDS FILLED IN BY GUESTS AT THE PARTY. For her grandmother's
90th birthday, one blogger had guests fill out notecards with the
honoree's picture on them and then hung up the notes as decor. I think
Reba favored an idea like this. We could put them into a book later.
The notes would be short probably. I am verbose which is why I probably
favor the above letter idea. Image Source: http://inchmark.squarespace.com/inchmark/2010/1/26/nina-is-ninety.html|
They also made her a memory book with 90 pages thru shutterfly that is awesome. I saw someone made a scrapbook with a page for each year their grandmother was alive that tried to summarize the highlights of that year for them. I wasn't sure we could pull that off, but a photo and a blurb, maybe? You should check the shutterfly book here: http://inchmark.squarespace.com/inchmark/2010/1/27/ninas-book.html
Okay, those are some cool ideas I found. One last thing......
|The blogger at Simcoestreet.blogspot.com threw a lovely party for her grandmother's 80th birthday at someone's home and I am a big fan of how it turned out. You can see her party entry HERE|
WRITTEN BY ELDAROSE