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Come Party With Me: Engagement Party - The Look

One reason to choose a long engagement after your man pops the big question is so you can have an engagement party. This week I'm planning one for julieulie and her fiancé Scott who recently got engaged, but aren't getting married until Memorial Day 2008. I thought it would be fabulously fun and original to throw a dessert party instead of a typical dinner or cocktail party. Desserts as meals are an up and coming trend, and more and more restaurants that are devoted to only desserts are showing up all over the place.

Julie & Scott's close friends and family have received their invitations to the fiesta that will start on a Saturday night at 8:30. The menu will consist of a dazzling array of divine desserts including brownie cupcakes, strawberry shortcakes, and a cheese and fruit plate. The champagne will flow like water as the invitees toast Julie and Scott's eternal love. I've painted a pretty picture of this party, but what about the decor? To see my romantic, chic, and elegant ideas,

  • A bride that knows what she wants, Julie has already selected the colors of her wedding (light blue, white, and black), so I will use these to guide me in my decorating scheme. No worries if you have yet to decide the colors of your wedding, a simple color scheme of white, black and a bold or metallic accent color will work wonderfully. Likewise, there should be no pressure to stay with these colors if you suddenly change your mind and opt for different colors.
  • First find the location of the party. Will it be held in the intimate living room at the bride's parents' house or the large, modern kitchen at the groom's aunt's ranch? Walk around the space and envision a party there. Where can guests sit and chat? Where should the buffet be set up? Are there tables/counters for the champagne buckets and flutes? These are the types of questions you should be thinking when you envision your fete.
  • To adorn the dessert buffet, begin with a long flat table that will be your canvas to create a beautiful presentation of candies, cakes, fruits, and cheeses. Place upside down cardboard boxes and large pots on the table. With an over-sized satin tablecloth, or piece of light blue fabric, cover both the table and boxes/pots pressing the fabric down the sides of the boxes/pots. The look you will achieve is one with various heights and dimensions. Now the platters of brownies can be placed on a square box and the strawberry shortcakes in martini glasses can rest at a different height on a circular pedestal.
  • Fill small clear bowls with the couples favorite grocery store candies: white m&m's, silver chocolate kisses, blue jelly beans.
  • Large clear vases in diverse shapes, a few oval, a few square, maybe one triangular, will create a stunning background when filled with water and one simple long stemmed flower such as a white orchid or gardenias. Place the flowers on each end of the buffet tables and on windowsills, banquets, or small coffee tables.
  • Don't forget small white plates, white napkins, and silver spoons for the dessert table.
  • Black accents in the form of satin ribbons, velvet pillows, and mesh runners will add a touch of mysterious sophistication.
  • A glowing and warm atmosphere is necessary and to achieve, so light as many candles, votives, tapers, pillars, and the like as possible. Keep the look uniform with all white candles and black votives and candelabra.
  • White or light blue tiny Christmas lights can be wrapped around the windows, the rim of the room, or any pillars and columns that enhance the architecture.

Got a decoration idea perfect for Julie's party? Please share it with us below. Tomorrow I'll talk about the appropriate music for an engagement party. Equally important to the look of the engagement party is the correct behavior. If you are attending, hosting, or planning an engagement in the near future, I highly recommend reading DearSugar's tips for proper engagement party etiquette.

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