Groovy 70th Birthday
The celebratory winter event for my dad’s BIG 70TH birthday was a groovy vibe of inspiration in the Midwest. I decided this year to host a themed birthday celebration to honor the life of my dad! It may be surprising, but with my family isn’t big on throwing parties, even though they have a free event planner 🙂 But this year, they had no choice as I threw a 1970s theme day filled with intention, emotion and meaning with their dear family & friends. Follow along, as I breakdown how to plan a theme birthday!
1) Identify your key motifs/themes (limit up to 3):
The three motifs were…. Geometric Patterns, 8 Tracks and the Aquarius Zodiac. I found masculine & bold geometric linens to use for the dining table runner as well as napkins for the dessert & bar. One of my favorite ways we used the 8 Tracks in the celebration was as a duo guest card & place card. Now, I did not know any of these artists, so it was so much fun to go through the tapes on Etsy with my dad to learn about his favorite music. Once they came in the mail, I worked with Alyssa withAP Calligraphyto find a groovy font and fun way to design the stationery! Finally, Aquarius is his zodiac sign and the song Aquarius was also popular back then so it was a perfect theme. We made a classic blue punch, because every milestone birthday needs a great punch!
2) Create an intentional beverage and food menu: One night at dinner at Houlihan’s I chatted about the menu with my mom & dad. As they talked about the foods they ate I started to notice a common theme. They always described their favorites using “brand names”, for example: Swanson, Betty Crocker, Bird Eye’s, Smuckers, Hidden Valley and Lipton. So to incorporate the idea of brand names as an influence in the cuisine back then, I worked with Pan & Cake Catering, to create menu cards with those names. It was such a fun conversation starter with all the guests around the table, recalling their favorite brands.
3) The birthday cake: The most important part of the celebration is the cake! I wanted to make it a “wow” so decided to design the cake to be similar to the dining table linens. I worked with Ashlee at the Cake Artists Studio to come up with an almost identical match the the linens with a 2 tier cake. We picked out dad’s favorite cake and filling flavors, one for each layer. Then I ordered a custom complimentary cake topper for Etsy to finish the look.
This event was a reminder to my family, that it is up to us to create our life’s memories. Whether big or small, public or private, elaborate or simple, events are important to each of us as a reflecting moment to celebrate what is. Also, it is a time to bond with one another. I learned so much about my dad’s life back in the 70’s from what music he listened to, what he wore, the type of parties they had, food & beers they drank….it was a memory I will never forget!
I am grateful to have created a lasting memory in his life, through a grooviness of the 70’s. -February 9, 2021. Photo Credit: Lisa Shreffler Photography