Archive for the ‘{FAB}’Category

Day of the Dead Celebration: A Stylish Halloween Dinner Party

Day of the Dead Inspired Dinner Party | Orlando, Florida

Day of the Dead Halloween Dinner Party
On October 31st, an intimate group of friends joined their Halloween-loving hosts for their annual Halloween celebration. The hosts selected Dia de los Muertos (Day of the Dead) as the theme, and worked with A Flair for Affairs®, Flourish Floral Productions and Puff’n Stuff Catering to create a festive Mexican dinner party under the stars. (Day of the Dead is a Mexican holiday which is also celebrated throughout Latin America and in parts of the United States. This colorful holiday is steeped in cultural traditions, and centers on celebrating deceased loves ones by honoring them with food, drink and parties.)

The hosts (our lovely clients) are never shy to admit that Halloween is their favorite holiday of the year. They have amassed an enviable décor collection, comprised of everything from ravens and skeletons, to exotic artisan-crafted items. Upon setting the date for the dinner party, they contacted Elisa Delgardio to help develop a stylish event design, and coordinate the elements of the celebration.

Invitations were sent, and party guests were asked to dress for the occasion. Given the choice of dressing in costume or proper dinner attire, the majority opted for the former. To the hosts’ delight, the arrival of each and every guest created a buzz of excitement, and created a synergistic experience for all.   Fortunately, photographer Errol Colon was on hand to capture the spirit of each guest.

Day of the Dead Make Up

As guests arrived on that gorgeous fall evening, they nibbled on butler passed hors d’oeuvres. Tasty goat cheese quesadillas and mini tacos were complemented by margaritas and sangria served by the Puff’n Stuff team. Guitarist David Naidu played a delightful array of Spanish classical and South American music.

Day of the Dead Halloween Dinner Party | AFFADay of the Dead Dinner Party Table | AFFA
Audible gasps were heard as the guests saw the feasting table and perused the vignettes and decor sprinkled throughout the home. Flourish Floral Productions did an incredible job of incorporating the quirky and colorful Day of the Dead elements into two table-scapes and various ‘oferendas’. Elisa Delgardio (A Flair for Affairs) took on a bit more than the planning and event design – she is also credited with creating the custom linen table runners. (Some décor items shown are part of the hosts’ collection.)

Day of the Dead Decor | AFFA

After cocktails and conversation in the main house, guests transitioned to the outdoor patio where dinner would be served al fresco. Top shelf guacamole was prepared table-side and served with tortilla chips, a trio of salsas and queso cheese. After enjoying the salad course, guests were treated to a dual plated entree with a Mexican flair.

Day of the Dead Halloween Dinner Party

But dessert was the showstopper: Flourless Chocolate Chili Cake with an edible Sugar Skull image on white chocolate – it was truly to die for!

Day of the Dead Halloween Dessert Sugar Skull

And what would a Halloween party be with out treats! The host created charming gift bags that were given to guests as they departed.

Photographer:Errol Colon Photographers
Event Planning / Design: Weddings & Events by A Flair for Affairs
Floral / Design: Flourish Floral Productions
Catering: Puff ‘n Stuff Catering
Guitarist: David Naidu

Private Parties, Entertaining at Home


11 2014

Dinner Party Inspiration: The Raven by Edgar Allan Poe

Poe Inspired Dinner Party: The Raven

A few weeks ago, I received a call a wonderful client who LOVES hallow’een – I will affectionately refer to her as Mrs.   Fortunately, Mrs and her husband also love parties and entertaining at home – so when she told me she had fallen in love with the idea of hosting a dinner party themed around Edgar Allan Poe’s The Raven , I was delighted to lend a hand.

Shortly after, I met Mrs at her home to discus her ideas; at which time she also showed me her (copious) stash of hallow’een decor plus an enviable collection of black birds  in all shapes and sizes.  Needless to say, she was ready to get her invites out and set a menu.   It took barely a few weeks to pull it all together since her vision was so clear and the guest list was small.  Approximately twenty guests were expected so it was reasonably easy to put extra effort into all the special details.

Dinner Party Inspiration: The Raven

Edgar Allan Poe Dinner Party - The Ravenphotos (c)

There are barely enough pictures to do justice to all the incredible details, but hopefully you will get the idea.   Invites were hand made fairly easily and sealed with red wax (P for Poe) before they were mailed.   Guests were encouraged to come in costume, or wear black and white.   We used the living room area to set up a large feasting table to accommodate their guests.   Above, you will see  Mrs  etched* The Raven poem on her large living room mirror (*using a dry erase marker), and pictures of Edgar and his wife were displayed on the piano.

Edgar Allan Poe themed Dinner Party - The Ravenphotos (c)

Guests arrived early evening and mingled over cocktails and a cheese platter.  The catered dinner was a four course affair~ featuring a black linguine appetizer, a wilted salad, and a duo entree with purple potatoes and white asparagus.  It was to die for

There was an abundance of candles:  Two dozen luminaries were set out side the front entrance, plus pillar candles in lanterns.  Inside, candle-scapes and ravens were placed on tables, sideboards, book shelves, the mantel, the piano and throughout the sprawling centerpiece.  The table was set with black satin linen, and napkins to match.   Fortunately, an old typewriter was also on hand and it was set atop a secretary desk to create a vignette: The Raven was typed out on vellum paper.

Edgar Allan Poe Dinner Party Menu - The Ravenphotos (c)

The wax seal used on the invites was also used on each place card and the menu card, as well as a few other small signs.

The hosts compiled a perfect playlist of creepy music: themes from The Omen, Halloween, and other eerie classics (via Pandora).  In the Den, the TV played a DVD of  Vincent Price movies.

Vincent Price The Raven

Everyone had the most delightful time!  Quite a few of the guests came in The Raven inspired costumes; one gentleman came as “Dead-gar Allan Poe“, which was hilarious!   I was thrilled just to be there and all the kudos go to our hostess the for the outstanding atmosphere at the event! – I doubt I could’ve done a better job.  Definitely a unique idea to try!



10 2013

Henna Inspired Details Add an Artistic Flair to Wedding Cakes

You’re sure to swoon over these wedding cakes featuring artistic details inspired by the art of Henna (Mehndi).  Largely inspired by the popular tradition of bridal henna (practiced for centuries in India, Africa and the Middle East) these wedding cakes range from dramatic to colorful to elegant.

Because I’m still feeling a bit awe-struck over the the henna inspired cake that was shown on the “Amber and Amethyst” inspiration board I recently created, I’ve collected a few more great examples that I’m excited to share with you!  If this type of cake is appealing to you, you should know that wedding cakes designed with henna inspired details and intricate patterns are also called mehndi cakes.

Pictured below is a gorgeous cake inspired by South Asian and Indian culture.  Created by IndAroma‘s Abhishek Handa, this artful cake makes a glamorous and memorable statement.   Source: IndAroma. 6548C Little River Tpke., Alexandria; 703-354-1812
cake photo by
This next lovely henna inspired wedding cake is by  Eileen Carter Creations.

cake photo by

Many thanks to Jamie Howell Photography for the above photo

What’s not to love about the subtle elegance of a white on white cake?  Pattern and texture make this cake come alive!

cake photo by

photo by

The henna inspired pattern seen on this next wedding cake has a more whimsical flair.  The intricate detail is very pretty and balanced nicely by the simplicity of the smooth white icing.Purple Henna Cake by Sugar Coated Desserts and Cakes


And just for fun…  how about some cookies!

photo of mehndi inspired cookies


01 2013

Bridal Portraiture | Artist Debi Griffin Captures Your Inner Fashionista!

Illustrative Moments by Deborah Griffin

Debi Griffin‘s bridal illustrations stem from over a dozen years in luxury bridal design.  After 13 years of working in couture bridal with Vera Wang and Amsale , sketching wedding gowns for clients and bridal publications Debi decided to make this modern keepsake available to every bride.  Rendered in the high fashion style you would see on the design room walls of the coveted labels in NYC/Europe, Debi has the talent to turn your memories into a timeless piece of art!

Each custom illustration is approached with much thought and detail, highlighting unique characteristics such as hair color/style, gown silhouette, and jewelry.   Debi’s sketches are not meant to be portraits; the magical essence of her illustrations exists in her ability import her subject into a high fashion setting – thus creating a timeless original fashion illustration.

The process begins with an order and payment, and requires several photos, such as a good full frontal, three-quarter view, full back view if that option is selected, and then detail shots (shoes, jewelry, hair ornaments, dress embellishments).   The chosen pose is decided by the dress and all highlighted details creating a flattering composition.

Every illustration is an original piece done on bristol board using permanent artist ink, colored pencil and markers with accents of metallics. You will also receive a scan of the finished piece before shipping.  Once completed each piece is signed and then set in a 12×16″ light ivory mat with backer board, and then placed in a protective clear sleeve. Each piece is carefully packaged in a non bend envelope before mailing.

Debi graciously agreed to my Three-Q-Interview , and I am delighted to share her responses with you!  Enjoy!

Q1: Name a celeb you would love to have as a client

Gwen Stefani would be a dream client! I would love to illustrate her custom-made pink and white silk faille wedding dress by John Galliano for Dior, with an antique lace veil also designed by John Galliano.

Q2: What are your favorite fabrics and/or embellishments?

My favorite fabric is silk faille. It is the new taffeta. Lots of body and richness and ultra chic. I love embellishments that are bold but understated like Vera Wang’s use of fabric treatments that do not need alot of glitter to make it important.

Q3: Who is your favorite wedding dress designer for current year or new season.

There are so many great designers who I admire for so many different reasons. I have had an obsession with Marchesa for several seasons now. I love Georgina and Keren’s vision of the new glam.


Illustrative Moments renderings are perfect for any occasion- Bridal shower, Wedding, Anniversary (the ULTIMATE first anniversary gift of paper), Valentines, Birthday, Christmas, or just because.

Additional Links & Contact info for Debi… |

(c) 2012  E.Delgardio


09 2012