Say 'bonjour!' to a great midsummer Mardi Gras party
July 13, 2010
Mardi Gras is one of the most unique celebrations the world has to offer. Despite originating overseas, thanks to a rich cultural tradition in Louisiana and Mississippi, it has continued in America. Ever since the French settled in the late 16th century, the annual blowout before Ash Wednesday is one of the biggest parties in United States, especially in the Gulf Coast. Although it is months away from the actual celebration of Mardi Gras, that does not mean you cannot host a midsummer Mardi Gras party of your own that is sure to be magnifique.
The holiday is known largely for its bright, elaborate colors and flamboyant festivities, so your invitations should reflect that mood. A great way to do this would be to send ones out that look similar to a traditional Mardi Gras mask. The recipient will know the theme right away once he or she sees the iconic green, purple and gold feathers. For those who prefer a more understated approach, a good way to invite guests would be to simply make sure invitations are appropriately colored
As flashy as your invitations are, decorations should be just as ornate, if not more so. The theme should be apparent as soon as your guests enter, so hanging a purple, green and gold door curtain is a fantastic start. Of course, this is just the beginning. New Orleans is typically the Mardi Gras headquarters in the U.S., so bring the feeling of the French Quarter to your party by hanging some Fleur-de-lis whirls from the ceiling. Gold and green metallic fringed table skirt could be the perfect option to subtilize your decorations. For an added touch, throw a jazz trio cutout into the mix. Consider playing some smooth jazz or mixing things up with some Zydeco to match these silhouettes and create the atmosphere of Bourbon Street at your shindig.
At some point, your guests will be ragin' if you don't serve them some authentic Cajun cuisine. However, it will not be enough to simply serve some delicious barbecue or fricassée if your supplies aren't satisfactory. Make sure your cups, plates and napkins are all the correct colors, or at the very least, include some images of revelers on them. As for other supplies, it simply would not be Mardi Gras without beads. You can hand them out as a prize for any number of accomplishments but make sure you have a lot because they are a hot commodity. If your guests like to dress up you should provide them with lots of choices. For instance, a jester hat matched with a feather boa could be a very popular.
You certainly do not need to be French, and it does not need to be February, to turn an ordinary Mardi Gras into 'Party' Gras. Hosting an incredible soiree can be just the thing to make sure you don't fall into a summer lull.