Winter is coming… Part 2 


Christmas: the happiest day for all children (wise enough to wait until morning). But before Christmas day, it is Christmas Eve. It is more a family event than a party with friends, though in this day and age, we get to choose our family J.

f886709752aab251e2ba3fa56fe08c74Once again, you can prepare a lovely dinner and concoct a musical atmosphere (AC/DC is good but you should prefer some jazzy, low key tunes for this event). About the dinner; it is the time to be creative while keeping the favorite traditional comfort foods. Be spontaneous and add in a dish most people may never have thought to display. It is now appreciated and trendy to eat foods such as fish and seafood. You can do salmon, oysters, lobster, and other dishes the sea offers us. Speaking of eating differently, our French intern eats snails for Christmas; can you believe it? Why not try? If you prefer those succulent traditional birds, make sure you stuff them with apples and butter and of course, stuffing! Perfect traditional dinner! Maybe try venison, lamb, something new. Vegitarian? Tofurkey! Or some really awesome veggie platters. Corn casserole is always a favorite. So now you have the dinner and the music, is there something missing? YES: the table!


Once again, the table is very important and is part of the full ambiance of the evening. Thinking of a table center is a way to express your artistic side again, you should keep a theme in mind, the result will be better. Don’t forget the candles, the flowers, you even can add fake snow (real snow tends to melt really fast you know), add place cards, and your most beautiful tableware on this special day. You should bet on a minimalist design, simple, with bright accents, maybe throw in some sequins and flashy objects (white & gold, or white & silver for example).

Christmas day is now here; it is time to share presents and to wear your pajamas all day long! You can share brunch with your family (mimosas, bloody mary’s and screwdrivers!). It is perfect after the big Christmas Eve dinner. Brunch is cozy, not too serious, intimate, and the fact that you can drink before 3pm will delight everyone. If you don’t have any idea of which kind of food you should prepare for a brunch, do as simple as you can: some fruits, fruit juices, coffee, tea, bacon, eggs, avocados, muffins, toasts, jam, butter, maybe some turkey sandwiches (once again?), and some sweet deserts like the pie from last night. You can add some chill music, such as Amy Winehouse or Frank Sinatra, clear the table entirely form the night before, keep a couple of lively flowers and small pumpkins, but obviously this will be low key. The most important thing will be sharing this magical moment with your loved ones, and to enjoy the beauty of the simplicity of this day.

And, don’t forget that (winter is coming…). No seriously, don’t forget that SWANK is here to help you if you do not have the time to get through all the events this season has to offer, or if you need any advice, it’s our pleasure to help!


The SWANK Team

Non-Floral Centerpiece Ideas

Centerpieces 2While although floral arrangements are the most common centerpieces in formal dinners, there are a number of other alternatives that are equally as stylish and fabulous. You can go for these alternatives if you have allergies and you don’t want them bothering you (or your guests) during dinner. Some classic centerpieces include paper flowers, candles, candelabras and themed decorations.

Sometimes people decide that they don’t want to do floral arrangements for their event. It is important to keep in mind that these alternatives are not always cheaper and can be sometimes even more expensive.

Luckily, Swank Productions are experts in this area and have put together a list of alternative centerpieces:

Paper Flower Arrangements

Centerpieces 3It’s hard to believe, but in this picture we have a paper flower arrangement. This is an ideal solution for anyone that suffers allergies. These paper floral arrangements are the perfect alternative to real flowers and unlike real flowers, they last forever!


We even organised a whole wedding dedicated to this idea. Be sure to check out more pictures of our Paper Flower Wedding.

Themed Decorations

A centerpiece is an ideal feature that helps express an events theme. A centerpiece can be a decoration that represents a theme. Below is an example of a centerpiece for a nautical wedding. The yacht centerpieces also had the table numbers written on them.

A decoration will allow you to get creative with your centerpiece and lets you express and exaggerate your theme.



Herbs imitate flowers very well with the green colors and the beautiful smells. Like in the picture below, herbs can be placed in creative glassware and this is very good money-saving alternative.


To create a romantic and more intimate centerpiece, why not try using some candles. The candles can be on own their own or you can pair them up with some other decorations. There is an un-ending amount of centerpieces that you can use with candles and there light._DSC3548 copy2 copy

This is all about thinking outside the box and making your centerpiece unique. If you’re engaged or planning on getting married and want your wedding brought to the next level, be sure to get in contact with Swank Productions.

Also, check out our Swank Decor Sale on pinterest to purchase decorations for any event that you may be hosting.

Swank Productions event planning and design main site: Swank Productions 
You’ll find a ton more photos and learn more about us

Hunger Games Theme Idea

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Starting off as a bestseller book, the Hunger Games was soon directed into a movie that had the world obsessing.  The movie sees 16 year-old, Katniss, volunteering herself (replacing her sister) to take part in the annual hunger games. 12 Districts randomly select 2 teenagers from their district to participate in a competition that puts all 24 participants against in each other in a battle to death, which only allows one victor.

“May the odds be ever in your favor” and with this theme, they will be!

Recently, this movie has developed into an unusual, yet a fun and exciting theme for parties for guests of all ages. Luckily, Swank Productions know how to plan the most incredible Hunger Games theme party. So look no further as the following tips will get you started on how to host your very own Hunger Games theme party:

Deadly BackgroundHG

To really give the impression of a Hunger Games theme party, backdrop is very important. There are many scenes that you can choose from but we thought having a forest background fitted well for this occasion.  You can use greenery and shrubs as convincing props.

The forest background works best as it goes well with the decorations and food.




Realistic Decorations

DSC01587 copyPicking out decor that features in the movie really brings this theme alive. Here are a few items from the movie that stuck out the most for us;

  •      Bow and arrows
  •      Medallions
  •      Old-fashioned bags
  •      Shrubs and Plants


It is really important to think outside the box here and to get guests talking

Food for a Warrior

This is where color can come to life and you can get creative for your guests to enjoy.

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Make sure to include a range of food from sweet, colorful treats, to rustic, wholesome foods. The intense colors really excite guests.

One of our favorite treats are the flame cupcakes shown below!


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Swank Productions are always here to help you with your themed events. If you need advice on how to work with a theme, be sure to get in contact and we will develop a theme that will exceed our expectations.

Top 10 Unique Bar Mitzvah and Bat Mitzvah Themes

Top 10 Unique Bar Mitzvah and Bat Mitzvah Themes

Swank Inspired themes that make sure your celebration stands out in a sea of Bar Mitzvah & Bat Mitzvahs

A great theme can make or break a Bar Mitzvah or Bat Mitzvah. A theme ( or design concept as we like to call it) can influence every aspect of your party, from décor to music to food. Before you start planning your celebration with a theme that’s been done a million times before, check out our list of unique themes to make your Bar or Bat Mitzvah stand out.

1.       The Hunger Games

With a theme like the Hunger Games, you’ll have to make sure your friends don’t try to kill each other to get invited to your party! Don’t worry though, you don’t need to give a nod to the murderous aspect of the stories when doing your planning. Your theme can be inspired by anything from the forest setting of the arena to the highly futuristic style of the capital. Can’t decide? Why not make every table represent a different district, each with its own decoration and inspiration. Whatever you decide, with a theme like this, you can be sure the odds will be ever in your favor.


2.       Cirque de Soleil

If you love the fun and playfulness that a carnival theme provides, but are looking for something a little more distinctive, consider a Cirque de Soleil theme. Not only can you use the show to inspire your decorations, but you can wow your guests by hiring contortionists and aerialists for live entertainment. Having an aerialist flying over guests while they enjoy their dinner would make your Bar/Bat Mitzvah more memorable than the real show.


3.       Top Chef / Hell’s Kitchen

Make food the focal point of this theme. You can get your guests engaged by having them play with their food. Try a build it yourself sushi bar to get everybody involved, you can even turn it into a contest to get guests in the competitive spirit of the show. For décor, let the chrome look of the stainless steel kitchens inspire you, with pops of orange inspired by the Top Chef logo.


4.       Snow White and the Huntsmen

This movie takes a classic fairy tale and makes it feel more grown up, perfect to inspire a coming of age event like a Bar or Bat Mitzvah. Have elements of Snow White’s enchanted forest meet the dark medieval feel of the Queen’s castle to create a mature take on the Disney classic, and an event your guests will never forget.



5.       Dark Night Rises

When tickets for this movie started selling, a month in advance, people were already clamoring to get them. Get everybody as excited for an invite to your party by channeling the adventurous and edgy energy that the movies create. A Gotham cityscape can act as the backdrop for your event, with dark colors and pops of yellow helping to create your color story.


6.  Olympics

With the 2012 Olympics fast approaching, why not capitalize on that excitement and use it to help guide your party? Let your color scheme be inspired by the colors of the Olympic rings and imagine centerpieces representing rhythmic gymnastics ribbon hanging from the ceilings over every table.



7.       The Avengers

Another popular movie, this theme is so great because almost everybody, no matter their age or lifestyle, can find an Avengers character that they love or relate to. You can choose the classic Marvel colors of red and white to decorate your party, but don’t forget to give a nod to your favorite hero in your décor.



8.  The Fashionista

Like fashion itself, the fashion theme is completely customizable and can be tailored to represent an individual’s interests very clearly. You can make the entire event feel like a fashion show (what better excuse for the birthday star to debut fabulous outfits?), make the theme shopping in general, or choose a favorite designer. You can channel the classiness of Chanel or the funky vibe of Betsy Johnson.



9.  Mad Hatter Tea Party

Guests won’t want to be late for your very important date when you choose this theme. Channeling the mysterious world of Wonderland will give you tons of décor options. Guests can enter through the rabbit hole into your whimsical world. Then create a tabletop featuring the mismatched linens and topsy-turvy tea sets of the Mad Hatter’s tea party. After dinner, create a lounge area for guests to relax resembling the Queen’s garden.


10.   Moroccan/Arabian Nights

If you’re looking to create a truly exotic experience for guests, try transporting them to another locale with a Moroccan or Arabian Nights themed party. One of the most fun aspects of this theme is the color possibilities! Choose your color scheme and drape fabric in those colors along your space to create the appearance of a Bedouin tent. If you want to try customizing your event even further, try doing a Moroccan disco, by adding a big dance element (and lots of disco balls) to your party.


What Bar or Bat Mitzvahs have you been to lately?  What was your favorite theme?  Let us know!




Maya Kalman, Event Design Expert & CEO of Swank Productions Maya Kalman is the Founder & CEO of SWANK Productions, a luxury wedding planning, event design and event production company in New York City. Known for her beyond-the-box designs and undying passion for creating extraordinary event experiences, Maya risen to become one of the most well known wedding and event planners in New York City. She has been a featured expert on TNT, NBC Today Show, MTV, Martha Stewart, Food Network, Geraldo Live and many more, and has planned and designed weddings, corporate events and parties for some of the top companies, brands and personalities around the world.
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