Joaquin’s Little Rascal Riot!

When Jemelle, the client, uttered the words, “Little Rascals”, I was instantly thrilled. I mean, who could ever forget that famous letter of Alfalfa, written to Darla?

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I wasn’t even 10 years old when Little Rascals went onscreen, so imagine the impression this scene left on me regarding boys! Needless to say, styling this party was a fun ride, and I hope Jemelle and her family enjoyed the experience!

But before we head on to all that talk about styling and decor, let me show you my own version of the “Darla Letter”:

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Isn’t that adorable! Now, on to my favorite scene:

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Joaquin is riding our own version of “The Blur”, and from the look on his face, he is loving it! Can I say that our party was a smashing success? The main celebrant’s stamp of approval is, after all, the most important!

Little J Photography did an awesome job capturing this special moment, and deserves credit for all these amazing photos. Kudos!

Now, let’s move on to the mood setter:

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Lately, I’ve been on addicted to tassels. I feel that they are a great way to dress ceilings: tassels are light, creates long lines of color, and the possible combinations of cloth, pattern, and color are almost infinite! In the case of this party, the Party Magic team and I opted for cream, red, and red checkered tassels!

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The stage is equally delightful: on the left side, we have the woman-haters club cabin; on the right, we have a fruit stand accompanied by a lemon tree!

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The photo-op area is one of the most famous during the event, simply because of “The Blur”! What can I say, all boys love cars, especially red race cars!

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The centerpiece design was focused on one of the most iconic elements of American childhood: the treehouse!

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The dessert area remains consistent with our opted for rustic, wood-filled scene:

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Popcorn cupcakes? Who can ever think of that, except Simply Paris!

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A most happy celebration to Joaquin and her loving parents, Gian and Jemelle!

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‘Til the next party,

Michelle

The Best Catering Services in Manila

It has been quite a while since my last post regarding the Top 5 Catering Services in Manila, so I think it’s best to brush up this year 2015 and provide you with a longer list of the best catering services in the city, a kind of “directory”, if you will.

Here’s a BONUS: I’ve already done the research for you and will be including downloadable menus and packages for EACH caterer, to save you time! You can find the download links at the bottom of each caterer.

Just a caveat: this list is by no means meant to be comprehensive or definitive. It just, in my opinion, contains a list of the most popular catering services in Metro Manila.

Let’s dive right in!

 

bizulogoBIZU

A: First Midland Building, 109 Gamboa Street, Legaspi Village, 1223 Makati City, Metropolitan Manila

T: +(632) 845-0590 / 845-0591 / 845-05-92 / 845-02-93

E: catering-concierge@bizugroupe.com

DOWNLOAD:

Bizu Buffet Package

Bizu Children’s Package

 

 logo_mainTIJIOE THE CATERER

A: 4303 J. Abad Santos Bayview Village Tambo Parañaque City

T: +(632) 851-0226

E: tjioethecaterer@yahoo.com

DOWNLOAD:

Tijioe Menu 1

Tijioe Menu 2

Tijioe Menu 3

Tijioe Kiddie Menu

Tijioe Desserts Menu

Tijioe Amenities List

 

 passion - adjPASSION COOKS CATERING

A: 18 V. Fernandez St, VOB Village, Parañaque

T: +(632) 519-5619 /  +(63917) 302-2937

E: passioncooks@yahoo.com

DOWNLOAD:

Passion Cooks Lunch and Dinner Menu

Passion Cooks Kids Sit Down Menu

Passion Cooks Mix and Match Menus

Passion Cooks Snacks or Cocktails Buffet Menu

 

hizons-logoHIZON’S CATERING

A:  22 Renowned Lane, Sanville, Quezon City

T: +(632) 928-3672 / +(632) 925-0107

E:  info@hizonscatering.com

DOWNLOAD:

Hizon’s Buffet Menu for Lunch and Dinner

Hizon’s Children’s Menu

 

golden cape logoGOLDEN CAPE CATERING

A: 304 D. Tuazon, Quezon City, Philippines

T: +(632) 365-7150 / +(632) 416-5856

E: inquiry@goldencapecatering.com

DOWNLOAD:

Golden Cape Menu 1

Golden Cape Menu 2

 

verleo logoVERLEO CATERING

A: #277 P. Guevarra St., San Juan City, Philippines

T: +(632) 506-3118 / +(632) 404-7858

E: verleocatering@gmail.com

DOWNLOAD:

Verleo Catering Buffet Menu

 

k by cunanan - adjK BY CUNANAN

T: +(632) 710-6445

E: emailus@kbycunanancatering.com

DOWNLOAD:

K by Cunanan Menu

 

creamery - adjTHE CREAMERY CATERING

T: +(632) 687-3436

E: creamery.cater@gmail.com

DOWNLOAD:

The Creamery Menus

 

hearty - adj 2HEARTY ONION CATERING

A: Quezon City, Philippines

T: +(63917) 828-7988

E: inquiries@theheartyonion.com

DOWNLOAD:

Hearty Onion Sample Menu 1

Hearty Onion Sample Menu 2

Hearty Onion Snacks Menu

Heart Onion Packed Meals Menu

 

logoNE CATERING

A: 40 Aurora Blvd., corner H. Lozada St. San Juan, Metro Manila

T: +(632) 726-9384 / +(632) 298-6151 

E: necatering@gmail.com

DOWNLOAD:

NE Catering Kiddie Menu

 

cvj logoCVJ FOOD CATERING

A: 2nd Floor CVJ Clubhouse #50 Eagle Street, New Marikina Subdivision, Marikina City

T: +(632) 646-8415 / +(63917) 880-5321

E: cvjfoodcorp@yahoo.com

DOWNLOAD:

CVJ Promo Party Packages

CVJ Kiddie Menu

CVJ Kiddie Party Entertainment and Amenities

 

‘Til the next party!

Michelle

Balloon Decoration: Is This For You?

(Or, The Difference Between Styling and Balloon Decoration)

In just the space of just 2 years, event styling has quickly grown from a small trend into a full blown revolution. I am sure that by now, you know somebody who has thrown a birthday party decorated by an event stylist. And what a party it was! All the amazing handmade crafts, the elaborate stage set-up, the furniture, and all those lanterns and pompoms!

But what, exactly, does styling mean? How is it different from the typical balloon decoration? Is it really for you? And most importantly, how much will it set you back?

In this article, I will my best and answer all of these questions. But before diving into the meat of things, I think it would be very helpful if we have a little history lesson and find out how the whole styling movement began.

HOW EVENT STYLING CAME ABOUT

My company, Party Magic, has been in the party decor and supplies industry for the past 4 years. In the space of this time period, I was lucky enough to witness how styling came about. There are, basically, 2 types of clients who approached us with the burning desire to have a styled party:

1. The Veteran Kiddie Party Throwers

These are parents who are celebrating the 1st birthday of their 3rd, or 4th child, and are just plain sick and tired of the usual balloon decor. Think about it. If you assume that these parents are well-connected, established professionals with a considerably wide social circle, then it is easy to assume that they’ve attended the kiddie parties of the children of their friends, their families, and even the parties thrown by the classmates of their own children. They must have seen more kiddie parties than I have! And so when they stumbled upon the early trend of styling, it must have felt like such a breath of fresh air. Suddenly, parties became fun to attend to again!

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This is my niece, Morgan. Her mom, my sister-in-law, is THE veteran kiddie party thrower!

2. The Early Mom and Dad in the Batch

The early mom and dad are parents who, compared to their peers in their social circle (such as friends, family, and schoolmates), married early and had a child early. The main consequence of this is the fact that by the time they would be celebrating their child’s first birthday, their child guest list is almost zero. Faced with this prospect, and being young and hip, they often opt to go for the styled party trend.

Styled parties have the interesting characteristic of being appealing not only to children, but to adults as well, because of applied concepts such as coordinated design, typography, and color palette. Styled parties are also more suited for a cool, relaxed vibe, perfect for small chat and catching up between friends. Both of these qualities are very appealing for the early mom and dad.

WHAT IS EVENT STYLING, EXACTLY?

Nowadays, it is very easy to declare oneself a “event stylist”, and any unsuspecting potential client would be none the wiser. But what is event styling, exactly? What can you expect from a styled party?

If I were to describe event styling in one sentence, it would be this: If Martha Stewart had a 1-year old, the party that she would throw would be a styled party.

However, instead of trying to tell you, I think it’s best to just show you a styled party:

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Andie’s Mermaid Themed Party, by Party Magic

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Ross’s Monopoly Party, by Party Magic

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Sam’s Barnyard Bash, by Party Magic

Balloon decoration, on the other hand, looks like this:

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Miko’s Sesame Street Balloon Party, by Party Magic

Perhaps a better way of presenting the difference between styled and balloon decorated party is by presenting the table below:

  STYLING BALLOON DECOR
Theme Non-character-based (such as Garden, Tea Party, Monsters, Transportation) Character-based (such as Mickey Mouse, Cars)
Materials Paper crafts, furniture, wooden painted props, lights, floral arrangements, lanterns, pompoms, swags. Rubber balloons, styrofoam backdrops, swags.
Overall Look and Aesthetic Coordinated color scheme, subdued, visually balanced (not minimalist, but not overblown either). A blast of colors; a look that says, “every nook and cranny needs to be covered in balloons”.

HOW MUCH DOES A TYPICAL STYLED PARTY COST?

If I were to answer this question in a nutshell, I would say that a styled party will cost you about P60,000 and upwards, with the P60,000 being the most basic, base price of a stylist’s package. How high the price will go upwards for your specific party actually depends on 3 major factors – your requirements, your venue and guest list, and the stylist that you will hire.

It is important to realize that not all stylists are created equal – each stylist that their own taste, signature design, and their own interpretation of the theme. It is very important that at the onset you and your stylist will establish a strong rapport in terms of the execution of your ideas and concepts.

Hope all of this helps you in your search for that perfect birthday celebration for your little one!

‘Til the next party!

Michelle

Morgan: A Baking Banquet!

In line with my New Year’s resolution to post more photos of our parties, here’s another one that I’m sure you’ll like: our Baking Party, version 2.0!

At Party Magic, we always try to push ourselves to new heights. Just because we’ve already done a theme before doesn’t mean that we can just reuse the concept all over again. What other element can we introduce to make the party extra special? What is the “kaboom” factor?

Of course, it also helps to have added incentive: it just so happened that the 7th birthday celebrant, Morgan, is my niece!

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We decided to veer away from the typical ceiling treatment, and do a more unique twist: baking cup garlands, and lots of it!

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If you take a close look at the photo above, you’ll notice something: each baking cup is lighted! You can’t see it here, but the lights are programmed to blink on and off in a set pattern as well. This was an afternoon party, so by the time the sun set and the venue grew a little bit dark, the lights totally did their magic!

Let’s take another look at the stage setup, this time with the birthday celebrant herself!

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Now, let’s zoom in on the details!

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For those who are wondering, yes, that’s a real KitchenAid!

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There are so many details, we haven’t even tackled the entrance, dessert table, and centerpiece yet!

Another special element to the baking theme is the ability to infuse actual pastries and cakes into the stage concept. For Morgan, Simply Paris created a whole set of cakes for her!

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If that’s not enough, here’s some more cakes!

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Before we leave the stage, here’s a candid photo of the great host, Jen Belen herself, in her element!

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Let’s move on to the entrance set-up shall we?

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Isn’t the family just adorable!

Below is another shot, this time with Morgan and her sweet sister, Summer!

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The concept was a mini bakeshop, filled will all these goodies!

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Are these delectable pastries real? Or fake? (Hint: answer is at the bottom of this post!)

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In this blog, I’ve been talking about cohesiveness and sticking to your theme, and this is one way to achieve this: having crafts and activity booths patterned after your theme!

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The activities and crafts were made and organized by none other than the great Gladys of Crafts & Party Bucket! Kudos to her for styling such as wonderful crafts booth, as usual!

Mommy Cheryl, my sister-in-law, availed of the following activities:

Apron Decoration

Cooking Decoration

Fishbowl Decoration (okay, this is not really “in line” with the baking theme, but it’s so cool!)

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The centerpieces were not to be left behind! Each table were decorated with it’s own baking set, complete with Morgan’s invitation logo printed on a wooden block!

The baking banquet continues at the little corner at the end of the buffet table, where we see the dessert table set up! Check out the mini-kitchen set and the pastry cabinet!

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Take a look at how beautiful Simply Paris packaged its sweets: custom cupcake boxes and mini glass jars!

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And of course, look at these wonderful Simply Paris creations!

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Congratulations for a job well done, Mommy Cheryl! A joyful 7th birthday to our sweet Morgan!

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Oh, as for the answer to my trick question above, the pastries are fake!

‘Til the next party,

Michelle

Chelsea’s Candyland Paradise!

It has been a very very long time since my last blog post (see Sam’s Barnyard Blowout), as I recently gave birth to my beautiful sweet girl, Chloe Brielle (cheers for me!)! And so coming off from my semi-leave from work, I will make up for this by mustering my writing juices and trying my best to post more parties in the near future!

Here’s a personal favorite of mine, which I’ve always wanted to post and share with you but did not really have the time (until now): Chelsea’s Candyland party!

Let me dive straight in and show you the ceiling work:

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After seeing the Party Magic team’s handiwork, I knew that all our hard work, sweat, and tears were all worth it. The sight’s a real stunner! You see, the venue we styled was none other than Decagon at Silver City. Although this venue is ideal for children’s parties, filling up the ceiling is no mean feat, as it is high, and the space to be filled is quite large.

The concept is simple – pastel colored swags, lanterns, and pompoms, with special lanterns customized to look like candies! We made a special order of the extra-large sized lanterns and tied tulle fabric on both ends to make it look like large candies!

Here’s another beautiful shot of the ceiling, care of the great Little J Photography!

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The stage follows along on the same lines, this time with various props to resemble a fantastical candy store! Colors were chosen in order to induce that sweet, fun-filled atmosphere. We wanted kids to feel the same wonder they felt when entering a candy store, and we hope we were successful!

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Check out these adorable, giant chocolate bars, Reese’s and Gobstopper! 

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Styling is all about details, details, details. So we made sure we spared no expense in filling up the party with these.

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Special mention is deserved for Chelsea’s cake, made by the amazing Tazzy Cakes! Set against that soft, luminescent backdrop, the cake’s details and craftsmanship stood out even more. 

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One more scene before I leave the stage: the Amazing Wizzo! I just had to include this. Little J did an awesome job capturing the illusionist at his work!

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Here’s another sweet shot (pun intended!) by Little J, this time of the celebrating family, Mommy Rachel, Chelsea, and Daddy!

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 Speaking of details, here’s another design element I am really proud of: the centerpiece!

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Although the Party Magic team had a hell of a time assembling these cardboard puzzles boards (we were assembling these babies all the way until almost the start of the party!), the effort was definitely worth it!

The centerpieces we used were varied, the designs all wonderfully detailed:

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 Now, let’s move on to the ACTUAL sweet shop; the dessert station!

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A happy happy celebration to dearest Chelsea and family!

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‘Til the next party,

Michelle

Sam: A Barnyard Blowout!

What I love the most about styling is how different each and every party turns out. No matter how long you’ve been in this industry, as long as you keep yourself inspired, you will always surprise guests, and even yourself!

When I heard from the client that she wanted a “barn” theme, I was all raring to go! This was simply because there are so many possibilities in creating a “styling twist” to this classic theme.

Take, for example, the stage. It was a perfect opportunity to create an iconic barn facade, and this is exactly what the Party Magic team did:

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What I love about this setup is that it is not too serious, nor is it too “cartoony”. It is the perfect blend of stylishness that appeals to the adults, and playfulness that in turn appeals to the kids!

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Believe it or not, those vegetables that you see are fake! It was so much fun using these ingenious details and sprinkling them all over the venue.

My next favorite element is the ceiling decor itself. Instead of the usual decor, I opted to use fabric bunting flags of varying patterns. This created that important “festive” feel, kind of like what you feel when you walk in a fair or market. Check the view below:

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Isn’t that breathtaking?

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If you take a closer look at the stage setup (look at the table on the left side), you will see the birthday cake integrated into the decor as well. It’s so cute!

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The centerpieces were not to be left behind. We had two types of centerpieces – the fruit basket, and the plant bowl. Which one do you like more?

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For the photo-op area, we held a photo montage of the birthday boy himself, Sam! This area was just the right kind of “busy” – tight and filled with props, but not too much to be confusing and cluttered.

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Let’s zoom in on my favorite element – the 3 cloth ponies!

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The dessert table was a story all unto itself. Take a look at the whole spread below:

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The whole idea was to simulate how food would be displayed inside a country fair or barn. Imagine wooden tables spread out, with a smattering of hay and straw, filled with delicacies displayed on wooden crates and boxes and cake stands. Let’s zoom in and take a closer look:

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Again, Simply Paris did an awesome job on the treats! All treats were customized to match the colors of the styling as well as the barn element. Take a look at the toppers too; such detail!

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Of course, what’s a barn theme without chick cake pops?

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A happy happy celebration for little boy Sam and family!

‘Til the next party,

Michelle

Keith Henry: A Celebration Fit For A Little Prince!

Ever since we did our very first Little Prince party last year (see here for the post), we have been receiving requests to style parties with this theme in mind. And why not? When our first client, Erika, came to us with this idea, I was instantly in love.

Think about it. This is the book that we all grew up with, that talks about the royal child, whose travels brought him to meet fantastical things such as the wise fox, the king, a conceited man, and even a land of forty-four sunsets!

Little Prince is arguably one of the best themes for a styled party. Although it is character-based, the character is not as overused as Mickey or Minnie Mouse. It’s visually impressionable, nostalgic, and even romantic. Most of all, every little element that you can place in your party (such as the rose, stars, asteroids, the sheep, the baobab tree, etc.), carries a deeper and philosophical meaning.

For the stage, the concept was about The Little Prince’s great escape: getting flown away by a flock of wild birds. This is probably the most romantic scene in the whole book:

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Alongside the Little Prince are all of his friends: the fox, the sheep, asteroids, and even the famous baobab tree!

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Our new version of the Little Prince is the cutest! It’s a huge stuffed toy, personally created by our Party Magic team! Isn’t he so huggable?

Another favorite of mine in the party was the entrance set-up. Take a look!

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For left hand side of the entrance, we had a photo-op platform framed by a backdrop with Little Prince artwork and quotation. The quote reads, “It is the time you have wasted for your rose that makes your rose so important.” The platform is bordered by a life-sized version of the Little Prince book itself! The set-up was so enticing that even passersby couldn’t help but step on the platform and have their pictures taken!

The set-up on the right hand side is a bit too wide for one camera cover, so I will post it in 3 batches:

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The open book reads what I think touches on one of the most important points of the book: “All grown ups were children once, but only a few of them remember it.” Children are most special by the twinkle of their eyes as they see the world for the first time.

Off to the side is the famous rose garden that the Little Prince discovered during his stay on Earth, and on the ground, the Little Prince’s beloved rose.

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The rose garden was adorned with even more precious items: Keith Henry’s photos!

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Another adorable touch was the table centerpiece, showcasing a fox, miniature trees, books, and roses in a cup. The fox is so adorable! (it was supplied by the client)

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Above is another centerpiece set, this time with a white fox!

In the end, The Little Prince is all about the innocence of children. Sometimes, we are all caught up with our own worries that we forget that the most important things in our lives are the simple things.

The whole point of our work, in this party as well as in every other party that we do, was to create a styling so well done that even adults feel the like children once again. I hope that we are successful with this for our future parties to come!

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Cheers to the cutest Little Prince of all, Keith Henry!

‘Til the next party,

Michelle

Jax: A Robotic Space Station Party

Although the art of styling covers both styling for boys and girls, these two types of events could not be any more different. In my experience, styling for girls usually emphasize the general setting or ambiance of the party, whereas styling for boys focuses more on a specific element in the event.

In other words, styling for girls involves creating a beautiful setting based on something grounded in reality (think garden, tea party, baking, candy, ice cream), while styling for boys involves something that is literally out of this world (think monsters, superheroes, robots). This is of course just a general statement and therefore there will always be exceptions to this observation.

For this particular party, the specific elements were: Robots and Space. Jiselle, who also happened to be a good friend of mine, only had 1 specific requirement for her son Jax’s most special day: make the ceiling decor extraordinary.

And so the Party Magic team and I rolled up our sleeves and got right to it:

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To be different, instead of the usual lanterns, we decided to use gold and silver stars instead, with the center portion of the ceiling containing large 3-feet stars. Alternating teal and orange swags were hung in between the stars. The goal was to make the guests feel as if they are in space. I hope they did!

The concept of the stage was a robot factory, with the making of robots in progress. The central portion focuses on a sort of robot platform where all the assembly gets done, while the left and right portions of the stage contain elements that are related to a robot factory: grills, barrels, checklists, pipes, and gears.

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As a side spectacle, we placed a giant rocket ship off to the right side of the stage, ready at any time to blast off and carry our guests off to the heights of imagination!

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The photo booth is a favorite of mine. The concept was a sort of control room or bridge of a space station, with a control panel board and decorated with led strip lights to provide some hi-tech luminescence! See the signage on the top right? It reads: JRI, Jax Robotics Institute!

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Simply Paris created some wonderful creations again with the dessert table! Check them out below:

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I love this: the Mini Banoffee Shuttle! Ready to shuttle you off to sweet goodness!

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Also another of my favorite: the Mango Panna Cotta. One of the main reasons why Simply Paris’ desserts get cleared out early in every party is because its desserts have just the right level of sweetness, which is not too much.

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Do you see all those cute cupcake toppers? Just love all that detail. Considering how small these toppers are and how hard it was to cut them to shape, these are definitely a labor of love!

Congratulations to mommy Jiselle for organizing such a party and a very happy happy birthday to sweet Jax!

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‘Til the next party!

Michelle

Event Styling 101: Mermaids, Layering, and Creating Awesome Dessert Tables

Event styling has brought about no less than a revolution in the kiddie or children’s party industry. Whereas just a couple of years ago it was commonplace to see an explosion of balloons and styrofoam backdrops, matched with a whole gamut of famous, Disney-related characters, now we are equally privileged to enjoy a more sophisticated aesthetic, painted with various themes such as Nautical, Mermaid, Baking, Transportation, and the like. 

In my mind, styling has the following characteristics:

1. It is thematic and non-character based. Themes have long been part and parcel of children’s parties, and will always be so, as kids love to immerse themselves in a fairy tale make-believe world full of wonder. The difference between styling and the conventional party though, is that the themes are more about general concepts rather than a specific character (such as Mickey Mouse, Cars, etc.).

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Our mermaid-themed party. This was so much fun! More info on the party below.

2. A cohesive and limited color scheme. In majority of cases, stylists work with a preset palette of colors. This coordinated approach leads to the strong punch of visual splendor that you feel whenever you enter a perfectly styled event. 

A frequent misconception about event styling is that it is all about minimalism. In other words, some people might interpret this sort of minimalism as simple, or bare. While styling does sometimes exemplify minimalism and clean lines, it is not always so, as for certain themes and occasions it may be more advantageous to incorporate a bit more orderly chaos.

A perfect example of this point is a recent event Party Magic styled, which is a Mermaid theme for Andie’s 7th birthday. The concept of the stage itself, which aims to present an underwater scenery, is practically begging itself for a burst of imagination!

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What I mean by layering is the exercise of putting on levels upon levels of various props until you achieve that very deep, very full look. It is not simply putting on stacks upon stacks of any item that you can find and throwing them all in one place. The professional stylist should pay attention to various details, such as the size of each prop, placement within the whole scene, proper balancing and the like.

There should be a sense to all the madness, so to speak!

In the case of Andie’s party, the basic foundation of the background was a printed backdrop that was flat and had absolutely no texture. This was then layered upon with the treasure chests on the ground, which was then surrounded with various small and mid-sized items such as candlesticks, seahorses, buoys, birdcages, window panes, and anchors. The focal point is the slightly off-centered giant seashell.

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My favorite part of the scene though, is the top portion:

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This was where we hung jellyfishes, seaweeds, and nets to create that busy look. Layering gives you the illusion of depth, and by doing these things, the graphics on that flat printed backdrop was further amplified and even appeared to have some dimension!

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Another favorite of mine was how the Party Magic team placed the cake. Positioned the cake as part of the scenery, and even enclosed its area with some undersea greens, as if the cake was unfolding from a dream!

Besides the stage, another element that can really make your party extra special is the dessert table. The usual cupcakes and fondants are quite nice, but isn’t it more exciting to do gourmet styled desserts customized to your theme? Again, Simply Paris did an amazing job here. Just take a look at those Gradient Jello in Jars! This type of dessert could work well on a nautical or beach theme as well.  

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Instead of the usual macaron, Simply Paris concocted Macaron Shells, complete with pearls inside! The presentation of it is also noteworthy: the Macaron Shells were placed on top of crushed Graham crackers that were made to look like sand!

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Here is another ingenious twist on the classic cake pop: Octopus Cake Pops!

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And last but not least, the Pina Colada Cupcakes! It is amazing that such a simple tweaking on a classic item (such as putting cherries, pineapples, and mini umbrellas) can completely transform its look.

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A happy happy birthday to Andie! Hope you had as much fun in your party as we did in decorating it!

‘Til the next party,

Michelle

Laz: It’s A Small World (Boy Version)

The theme It’s A Small World is arguably THE theme that started the whole styling revolution. This is probably the most popular and well-remembered party that the pioneer Barbie Pardo styled.

Our client, Laurice, approached us and requested for an It’s A Small World theme, but this time with a unique twist: she wanted a male version of the theme to coincide with the celebration of her baby boy Laz’s 1st year. This party was made extra special as the client hired the famous Krissy from Little People Photography! She was generous enough to share her wonderfully snapped photos with me, which I will now share with you.

The client had a beautifully designed invitation, and this was what we used to jump start our brainstorming:

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The client and I both agreed to go for the following colors: teal, light blue, lavender, and regal gold. In short, something that is more masculine, but soft enough to maintain the sense of childhood whimsy present in the original It’s A Small World (did any of you take that famous ride in Hong Kong Disneyland?)

For the stage, we decided to go all-out and create the famous It’s A Small World facade, only this time on a much larger scale! (The tip of the largest tower there, touching the ceiling swags, is around 12 feet!)

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The area in front of the stage was covered with grass, and bordered by these cute lampposts, to create a special, semi-enclosed area where the kids can play, run around, do activities.

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For the ceiling treatment, we decided to enclose all areas surrounding the central cove lighting, putting swags on a downward angle to create a more intimate scene. Lanterns and hot air balloons were used for accent drop decors.

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The centerpiece was a beautiful floral arrangement topped by helium-filled balloons in gold ribbons and backed by a printed label showing a child of different nationality per table. This was a cute idea by Laurice! Instead of the usual table numbers, each of her tables had a designated country assigned to it! Can anybody guess what country this table is?

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Speaking of cute ideas! Each of the guests’ children had to come in uniform representing a different country in the world, with a prize going out for the best in costume! Aren’t these kids super adorable?

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One of the things I liked the most about Blue Leaf is the venue’s spacious outdoor lawn and entrance areas, which we took advantage of by placing a set-up:

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The cake, crafted by Sugarbox, was also an amazing creation, and a small world all by itself!  

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The giveaway was equally mouthwatering. Take a look at those beautiful stools! Which one would you take home if you had the chance?

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For the dessert table, we hung paper dolls of the children of various nationalities, topped by light blue, lavender, and gold pompoms. Aren’t those staircase cupcake holders so cute!

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As we went along during the preparations, I learned from Laurice about the story of Laz, and all the obstacles that Laurice and her husband experienced (when the couple were still trying to conceive, they even went to Jerusalem!). It was because of all of the difficulties that they’ve faced and overcome that Laurice and her husband wanted to make this celebration extra-special. And it was that! Nothing is sweeter than seeing your beloved grow to a year (and beyond).

‘Til the next party,

Michelle

 

Jeffrey: A Beatles Concert!

After doing a handful of children-centered themes, it’s sometimes refreshing to mix in some adult parties once in a while! The client (who also happened to be my friend), Jiselle, wanted to throw an awesome 60th birthday party for her dad, Jeffrey. The theme: Beatles! This was a real fun theme to play around with, so I immediately rolled up my sleeves and dove to the challenge.

There are a number of ways to do a Beatles theme; one is to focus on the band’s more serious, melancholic, and rebellious aspect (think about their songs Imagine, or Revolution), which is not at all bad actually. But since it was me doing it, we did it the Party Magic way: fun, colorful, quirky, cool, and psychedelic! Think of Come Together, or Penny Lane.

Let’s begin with the stage:

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Since the client hired a band to play Beatles tunes (the amazing Reo Brothers!), I decided for a production more focused on the concert aspect of the event and one that would complement the band performing in front of the stage. And so the British flag backdrop mixed with Beatles paraphernalia, offset by vertical rows of lights to the left and right.

The whole stage was inspired by a retro look into the performances of The Beatles themselves. Take a look at the concert signage below and the V-shaped stage set-up of an actual performance by the band:

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As an accent, we also placed a kiddie drum set (which would be a cute photo-op for the kids!).

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Heads up on that fake microphone in the above photo. Isn’t that cute! (obviously the Reo Brother had their own, real mikes to work with!)

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The Reo Brothers truly came prepared. Look at that guitar strap with The Beatles insignia!

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The table set-up was composed of a chevron patterned runner, with guitars, bottles, and drums on top. The whole point was to produce a mixed, hippie feel to capture the zeitgeist of the times but still produce a coherent overall look.

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The ceiling was a mixture of the hippie colors pale yellow, orange, mint green, and light blue. To keep up with the vibe, we placed vinyl records in between each swag.

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Let’s move on to my most favorite area in the party: the band room! We went for a vintage, eclectic approach to the design. Isn’t it so easy to imagine John Lennon or Paul McCartney lounging around, listening to records, fiddling with their guitars?

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The dessert spread was another masterpiece by Simply Paris. What a psychedelic visual! We decorated the area with over sized paper accordions, keeping with the color scheme. In the middle, we placed the album artwork of Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band. 

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Of course, let’s take a look at the lovely desserts themselves:

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This is my favorite: the Yellow Submarine Eclairs. Such creativity!

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The ultimate classic: the Macaron!

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 Hey Blue-berry Cheesecake (get it? :)

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Chocolate Cake Pop

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Another cute twist of words: Penny Lane Pistachio Opera!

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Let’s close this post with an awesome overlooking shot of the dessert spread. Isn’t that mouthwatering!

‘Til the next party,

Michelle 

Julianne: An Ice Cream Special!

Ever since our baking-themed party, I’ve been itching to create another pastel, food-based themed party, simply because it combines both of my passions: styling and eating!

This party actually started off with the general idea of “candies” and “sweets”, with the client, Kathy, simply asking for a girly, pastel aesthetic. By the end of the meeting, we decided to focus on the more specific element of the ice cream.

Ice cream will always (and forevermore) occupy a special place in everyone’s hearts simply because eating it transports us back to our carefree childhood days. Think chocolate, vanilla, Magnolia, Selecta, Merry Moo, Carmen’s Best (yum)! Whenever my husband eats ice cream, for example, he doesn’t know it but he smiles!

Here is what we came up with for Kathy:

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Isn’t that so cute and girly? For the stage setup, we recreated a sort of “sweet shop” scene where we have an ice cream cart that carries the birthday cake and a sweets cupboard that holds actual candies!

The more traditional way to display a cake is that a caterer sets up a round table, puts some table covers, and places the cake on top. More recently, I find that one of the best ways to display a birthday cake is to incorporate it within the whole scene that you are creating. In this case, the best place to put the cake was on top of the ice cream cart, and boy did it look extra delish!

Let’s zoom in on the cupboard:

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I love the idea of putting actual treats; in this way, your stage setup looks good, and you (and your guests) can eat it too!

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Above is a snapshot of a graphic we used for the party. Too bad there weren’t any actual ice cream sandwiches at the party, those are my personal favorite!

A more interesting aspect to the party is how the Party Magic team and I dressed up the ceiling. Because the ceiling was a bit low (around 8-9 feet), placing swags would  not make sense as it would interfere with the lighting and make the place seem even smaller. And so instead of the usual pompoms or lanterns, the team and I came up with these ultra-cute ice cream lanterns! Take a look below:

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These are just actually small-sized pastel colored lanterns, with brown paper cones attached at the bottom. A simple yet ingenious twist to the usual ceiling treatment!

For the photo-op, we created a quaint little scenery filled with an ice cream truck, a divider, and a round table full of sweet delights!

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The centerpiece fell in step with the theme: ice creams and cupcakes!

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As with the baking party, I was quite ecstatic to be working with Nikki again from Simply Paris! And she truly did another amazing job at the desserts table:

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Let’s begin with my personal favorite: the Sundae Cupcake!!

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I think this was a wonderful twist to the usual cupcake. This particular creation was filled with Madagascar Vanilla Bean Cream, topped with Simply Paris’ signature chocolate sauce, cherry, and wafer stick! Suffice it to say that these were one of the first ones to run out of stock!

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My next favorite is the Meringue Nest. Look at those swirls! Perfectly in step with the theme. Simply Paris’ meringue are famous for its crunchy exterior but chewy insides! Let’s move on to more dessert goodness shall we?

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Ice cream cake pops. These I find to be very well designed and pleasing to the eye. Not only that, it is perfectly edible (and tastes good as well)!

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Ice cream cookies. Trust me when I say this. Those cookies are really really good! Not too sweet, with the just the right amount of icing. I know this because Nikki left an extra piece while baking and I tried it out for myself. Too bad it was just 1 piece, wouldn’t have hurt if there were more!

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And of course, the whole party wouldn’t be complete without Simply Paris‘ signature dish: the Macaron. This time it came in two tones, pastel pink and blue!

The pastries were a runaway success; I decided to drop by the party about an hour after it started and the dessert table was literally raided! People grabbed the desserts even before they started hitting the buffet table. Now that’s the best compliment you can tell a chef!

‘Til the next party!

Michelle