Victoria’s secret… for a great Mardi Gras party

Victoria & Me

Victoria & Christy (me)

Last weekend, my friend Victoria threw quite a Mardi Gras bash with her then-boyfriend/now-fiance, Steve — “title change” the result of a lovely Valentine’s Day marriage proposal yesterday.  “Party bling followed by an engagement ring” is how this last week will go down in history.  And that’s a tough act to follow, people! :-)Victoria is a woman who has got it all together.  Or if she doesn’t, you’d never know because she sure does seem to pull off parties with ease and finesse.  And I have the pictures to prove it.

Remember a couple of weeks ago when I shared the idea of draping plastic tablecloths on your ceiling to add festive color to your room?  Here they are, Mardi Gras style, in green, purple, and gold.  One of the first things you saw as you came through the door, it certainly said, “Let’s get this party started!” Mardi Gras Ceiling Tablecloth Decorations

Victoria also created a fabulous “mask and bead” board to display Mardi Gras accessories for guests to wear upon arrival.  After draping fabric across an inexpensive paneling board bought at Home Depot (you can hot glue-gun or staple the material in the back), she then used double-sided tape and hooks to hold the masks and beads.  Functional (albeit temporary) art — my favorite!Mardi Gras Mask and Bead Display Doors (2)

I can see similar approaches for other celebrations, with different color schemes and party favors (e.g., New Year’s party hats/horns, Santa hats/reindeer antlers, Hawaiian leis, Halloween masks).

I could share many photos to make all of you “wish you were here,” but I will limit it to just a few more so that you can get the flavor of this party and steal some ideas to replicate or alter when left to your own devices.

Dessert AreaDifferent angle of table centerpiece

 

 

What did you do for Mardi Gras or Valentine’s Day this year?  Party photos, crafts, or great recipes?  Victoria shared her secret(s).  Now you share yours!

The power of “3”

1068808_38960541, 3 vases of flowers

Years ago, a friend told me that one fail-safe design tip was to always work with odd numbers – and that arrangements or groupings of “3” seemed to be the most magical.  I’ve worked under this premise as long as I can remember and always thought that most people did the same.  However, I’ve recently discovered that, if you’re not in the design world, this may be one of the best-kept secrets locked away from the masses!

Grouping of 5 Art Pieces

This is a very simple concept that lends to great aesthetics in almost any situation. (There are always exceptions, but this is a great rule of thumb.)   Whether you’re arranging flowers, pictures, vases, items on a mantle… or even shrubbery in your yard, sticking to an odd-numbered grouping will create harmony and more visual interest.  Allowing your eye to survey the entire scene and land in the middle – and sometimes a purposeful focal point – does much to generate an overall appealing design.

Whether you see it as a cross between feng shui and psychology or, as some of the ancients referred to it, “the mystical power of 3,” it works.  Try it!

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Daisies photo taken by Karen Barefoot.  Art grouping photo taken by Christy Charlton.