Lights, Camera – Oscars…at Home: Tips on How to Throw a Viewing Party!

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Who’s attending one of the most glamorous nights in Hollywood, The Oscars … from your living room?!? Me!!! I am going to give you tips on “how to” throw a SIMPLE & EASY viewing party right from your home, but first let me rewind …

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For almost a decade I reported LIVE from the Red Carpet at one of the hottest Academy Award pre show parties and after show parties held at the famous Beverly Hills Hotel. It was exciting and I learned how to throw a stylish celebrity filled event! Guests, PR agents, Celebs and TV hosts, like myself, were dressed in gorgeous formal attire, sipped champagne and whispered “who” had their vote – off camera of course!

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I don’t know about you but unless I am actually at the Dolby Theatre, the venue of the Academy Awards, or attending one of the parties I mentioned above I do NOT want to dress up in formal attire, especially in my own living room! I want to be comfy and I would imagine your friends and family do too … trust me the guys will thank you! To keep the evening festive but relaxed I would recommend everyone come dressed casual in black, white, silver or gold. Let’s be real, these colors will make your photos of the evening super cute as well. Personally, this means my trendy joggers will be making an appearance with a stylish off-the-shoulder gold or silver top.

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Now what to sip and snack on? Since the celebrities have more-than-likely been cleansing weeks before the BIG NIGHT, why not start your guests off with shots of green juice? I have a juicer and love to juice fresh veggies and fruit but you can always buy green juice from your local grocery store and pre fill shot glasses or juice glasses with the concoction. Next, what is an Oscar party without bubbles? Champagne or prosecco will be perfect. To add a little glam, rim your champagne glasses with edible gold glitter before you fill the glasses with the bubbly liquid. Even though it’s not “movie night” – popcorn is a must! Set out a “popcorn bar” – it’s easy to make and your guests can help themselves. I would suggest buying red and white striped popcorn boxes that can easily be filled with the corn. Place the pre-popped corn in a large bowl and add a scoop so your guests can easily fill their boxes. Last, set out various spices, candies and sauces to be mixed into the corn. Some examples are: truffle zest (Oprah’s favorite), salt, pepper, onion powder, M&M’s, Reese’s Pieces, chocolate chips, caramel, white chocolate and chocolate.

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Oscar ballots are a fun way for you and your guests to keep track of the winners OR if you want to play a game by filling out a ballot before the show starts, Vanity Fair has made it easy by providing a printable version HERE. Many local bakeries will have Golden Oscar Statue cookies or cupcakes, which would make a great prize for the winner!

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If you would like to spice up the festive décor in your home for Oscars night think white flower arrangements, balloons in the black, white, silver and gold color palette and for a pop of color add a “red carpet” table runner or red butcher paper under your popcorn bar and bubbles!

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Who has YOUR Vote on Sunday? Do you have a creative idea for your Oscar’s party?  Please DO SHARE as I’d LOVE to hear from you!  I am always looking for new ideas!

Keep Dreaming, Designing & Dwelling…

Cheers!

Cortney

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Let’s Go to the Movies, Inside OUT!!!

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One of the best things about summer is its nights! They are longer, carefree and in many cities the nights are warmer. Even though summer is half way over, there is still so much fun to be had! It’s time to have some intimate & creative family time or go crazy and invite the neighborhood over for “old fashion” becomes modern outdoor movie night!

Like any “event” there is a high & low way to produce it. I’ll show you how to create your perfect home outdoor movie night – no matter what your budget may be.

How to watch:

Obviously, you will need the tools to watch your movie.

  • If you have a larger budget you may consider contacting an audio/visual company that will provide the set up and break down of an oversized screen, projector and sound system. Some companies even provide outdoor seating for your backyard event at an additional cost. Since outdoor movie watching is becoming more of a trend, if you live in a large city like Dallas or Los Angeles, finding a rental company is pretty simple … just Google “outdoor movie night rental” and you will find a list of options.

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  • If you plan on having multiple movie nights on a regular basis you might consider purchasing your own oversized outdoor media screen and equipment. Large box companies like Target will have a selection.

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  • If your budget is small, you love a good DYI project or really want to capture an “old fashion” outdoor movie night, then you can easily build your own screen. You can either affix a large crisp white sheet (yes, if its wrinkled grab your iron … it will only take a few minutes to improve your movie experience) to the side of your home or staple the sheet to two plywood studs, fill two large buckets with rocks and wedge the ends of the studs into the buckets or wedge them into the ground. If you are on a tight budget you may consider renting a projector from your local library or you may choose to shop out the best-priced projector for future use.

How to stay comfortable:

  • If you own outdoor lawn or beach chairs that sit low to the ground or beanbag chairs, scatter them around your lawn for the ultimate comfy experience. If you do not own these and do not wish purchase them then go for the “old fashion” route and pull out bundles of blankets, beach towels and pillows for a great lounge feel.

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  • Depending on what part of the country you live, make sure your backyard is clear of ants and provide bug spray or set out bug away candles so that you, your family or friends do not suffer with bites. Also, if you live in the South you probably get to enjoy warm summer nights, however those of you on the coasts usually have a dip in the temperature as night falls, so make sure you set out extra sweatshirts or tell you friends to not forget theirs!

How to eat & stay merry:

  • The sky is really the limit on what you want to eat at your backyard movie night! A backyard BBQ before the sun sets always adds a festive atmosphere to your event!  Some ideas are good old fashion burgers, grilled chicken and hotdogs – the majority of people love being able to “build their own bun” and pick their sides. If you are going BIG consider hiring a food truck like In & Out or Mr. Hamburger to cater your night, however if there is an expert griller in the family or between friends why not DYI and cook at home!?! If you are waiting for your flick to start think about playing movie trivia beforehand.

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  • Next, don’t forget the beverages. Soda is always an option but if you do not intend to be up until the wee hours of the night you might opt for other ideas such as muddled drinks – think mint infused lemonade – vodka optional!  If you have kiddos in attendance and you also want to serve “adult beverages” consider having drink stations, one for the kids and one for the adults that way there is no confusion!

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  • Now for the fun part! Who can have movie night in their backyard without some delicious candy and popcorn? If you are having a large group to your movie night, a candy & popcorn bar is always fun to set up. This allows each guest to pick out their favorite sweets & corn, plus it’s an adorable touch for the night. If you are having a small group and know what sweets everyone likes, having it on hand will just make them feel special and you can pop your own corn and provide each person with their own bowl or bag!

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I hope this helps you create an amazing outdoor movie night at your home!  I would love to hear from you!  Tell me some of your ideas for movie night and what do you plan on watching?

Keep Dreaming, Designing & Dwelling…

Cheers!

Cortney

Let’s be social:

Twitter: @CortneyBailey

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Cortney Bailey