Colorful Celebration: Graduation 2013

Last weekend, as mentioned in my 

previous post

, we had my younger sister's graduation party. With the fresh air, open space, and beautiful surroundings, the

Rancho Tapo Community Park

was the perfect location for a summery soiree on a Sunday afternoon. Special thanks to Aamir Iqbal for all the beautiful photos that afternoon!

When we decided to have a graduation party, I immediately knew I wanted to incorporate a color palette that represented my sister's bright and bubbly personality, and that's how we decided on the pink, orange, and yellow color scheme.

The draped fabric and hanging lanterns in the chosen colors created a vibrant atmosphere in the pavilion and instantly transformed the bland structure into a colorful area fit for a summer gathering. 

The fabric was purchased from Michael Levine in Downtown LA, and the lanterns were ordered online. 

For the centerpieces on the long picnic tables, we wanted to create something unique and personal. We started with the floral arrangements in the versatile mason jars. Large daisies in hot pink and bright orange complemented the color theme while further brightening up the tables. We added a few lemon slices for another pop of color and a pretty touch. 

My favorite part of the center pieces was the stacks of books that we used to elevate the mason jar floral arrangements. We used wrapping paper to cover the books, and then we thought of clever book titles of subjects that my sister would have much rather studied in school--like taking "selflies" and "Instagram." Printed on clear label sheets, the book titles were an fun and easy addition to the decor. 

The chevron table runners were another favorite, and they gave a modern look to the party. 

As a family that loves to take pictures, we knew that a colorful backdrop was a must! After going through several ideas, we decided to create this with colorful hanging squares. The squares are 12x12 cutouts of foam poster board, spray painted pink and orange. They are connected with hot glue and matching ribbon. We had to build a frame out of PVC pipes to have something to hang the ribbon from. 

I loved how it wasn't a solid backdrop; it was transparent and helped emphasize the open and airy feeling at the park.

Here's the card/gift table. We kept it simple with a pink card box, a few daisies, and some parasols for some color. We made a scrapbook with photos of my sister that people could sign with their advice and good wishes throughout the party. It was an interactive aspect for the guests, and now my sister has a scrapbook full of memories from the party!

On a hot summer day, these refreshing drinks were greatly appreciated. With lemonade on the left, and strawberry lemonade on the right, it only felt appropriate to decorate with some citrus. We filled two tall clear vases with lemons and oranges for a quick and easy pop of color. 

The grilled shrimp with mango salsa served in mini martini glasses was the fastest disappearing appetizer of the afternoon!

This is the dessert table before it was fully set up. We weren't able to get a shot of it with the rest of the desserts which included cupcakes, chocolate covered strawberries, and a make-your-own-sundae bar!