Moroccan Dinner Party -17yr- Belly Dancing Boyfriend
Lauren in Gold Coast, Queensland, Australia
For my 17th birthday party I wanted to have a fun, relaxed theme that was not too expensive to put on. So with a few web searches I've decided to go with a Moroccan inspired dinner party theme.
Invitations: For my invitations I bought two white cardboard pieces for $2 each. I typed up my invitation on the computer and used cute font; the writing just tells the details of time, address and also says that they can wear whatever they like (I'm not going to push people to dress up), and it tells them to bring a plate of food and a cushion to sit on. I cut the invitations out and stuck them in rows on the back of the white pieces of card, making sure they had enough of a boarder. On the other side of the card I stuck on wrapping paper which I found; purple with curly gold glitter lines (looked really Moroccan). I then went on to Google images and found a picture of a gold tassel which I printed many many times and cut out around them. After cutting out around the invitations in a wavy line, I stuck a tassel on each corner to look like a pillow or a magic carpet.
Decorations For the decorations I went on the internet and did frivolous researching on Morocco and Moroccan dinner parties. I found a cool website about a restaurant that is Moroccan; the place looks like a big tent with draping, bright coloured material and lots and lots of intricate cushions around low tables. This is my inspiration for the dinner. I borrowed long pieces of material from my schools drama room and I plan on turning my lounge into a tent like atmosphere. The entrance to the room will be covered with deep red material which they will need to walk through. With three long pieces of orange material, my mum and I are going to drape them from the wooden roof by using drawing pins and a ladder. We are going to do the same for our 3 sliding doors to outside by draping different coloured materials across the window.
After clearing out our two couches and some wooden furniture, we will have sufficient room to place our four low tables. We bought two longish pieces of ply wood from the hardware store for about $20 each and we are going to prop them up using crates. The other two tables are trestle tables with removable legs; the tops will also be propped up with crates, creating a low table. We will cover these tables with white table cloths and running a thinner piece of Moroccan type material down the middle. This material was actually a bed spread that was on sale and which we are just cutting strips from.
We will decorate the tables with plenty of candles, lanterns and beads. If you don't really have candles, go buy some cheap ones for a dollar at any dollar shop. For the cutlery and crockery, we ran into a bit of a problem; there are 32 people coming and we do not have enough plates and cups for them all, but we soon solved that by borrowing a few from my brother. Even though some of the plates are different colours and patterns, it makes each person's place setting unique. We bought some Moroccan type pattern serviettes and we are going to fold them into each cup. In the invitation, it told people to bring a cushion to sit on; this was because we wouldn't be able to supply 32 cushions.
We will also add to the atmosphere by burning some incense (careful not to get something too strong). When people enter they can place their cushion somewhere and that is where they will sit. Whilst people are arriving, they will not be allowed to enter the tent; we will have our other lounge area set up with cards, bean bags, cushions and a mini tent for people to relax in before we eat dinner; all this will require is a pack of cards and some furniture re-arranging. We live on the river, so we thought that outside we could have a carpet laid out with some cushions as well as some outside torches and even more candles.
Activities: This party does not involve many activities apart from a few card games at the start, but it's meant to be a more relaxed atmosphere where friends can gather around, eat, laugh and dance. I looked up some Moroccan music on the internet and downloaded a few songs from lime wire (note: lime wire will not recognise all artists), including some belly dancing songs. The night is not organised by events but we will just let it play out and dance when we feel like dancing.
Costumes: In the invite it said to wear whatever you like because I did not want to force people who may not be comfortable dressing up (some shy friends) to do it. But I have talked to people who I have invited who say that they really do want to dress up, so it will be a mixture. The Moroccan fashion is like what they wear in Aladdin; puffy pants, oranges and purples. This also includes a belly dancing outfit, bikini top if you're brave and some finger symbols for fun (I've charmed one of my guy friends into coming as a belly dancer). I will be wearing a silky orange patterned dress that ties over one shoulder; I will dress this up with big bronze bangles, big eyes and some black string tied up my leg. If you want to be accurate, you could buy one of those red Moroccan hats with the black tassel.
Party snacks: The great thing about this party is that you don't have to cook for everyone. Each person has to bring a plate of food and so without any effort on your behalf, you have a feast. A few of my close friends said they would make a dessert dish as well, so that has the whole dinner sorted out. My mum and I will still make a few dishes; we thought we would have food that people could eat with their fingers, so we are making spring rolls, meatballs and a lamb dish. For dessert, we are just buying a few tubs of ice cream and plenty of toppings for people to mix in. From experience I learnt that after a big feast, people will not eat too much dessert, so we are no going overboard. We are also providing the drinks (soft drink and some appletiser).
Cake: This year I am not having a cake. Lots of people have different taste in cakes. My taste is really rich, but not many other peoples are. So instead of blowing candles out on a cake, I am buying 32 tea candles (small candles) which you can get in bulk for cheap, and I'm going to give one to each person. I will get them in a big circle or line and when it's time for me to blow out my candles I will run in a circle and blow out each one. This is more fun and I still get to blow out candles without the cake.
Tea candles, serviettes, drawing pins: $20
Memories: Priceless It should be a wonderful night, where we chat for hours, dance and stuff our face with tasty treats. If you have great friends like mine that make their own fun, then this is a great idea for you too.