April 4, 2015 nick 0Comment

My wife and I really love to entertain family and friends and often we like to make sure that our parties have some sort of theme to make them more fun and interesting. One of our favorite themes would our “chill party” or Zen themed party. This is a great theme to have to end a busy stressful week at work and all of our friends always seem to enjoy it when we decide to have one of these.

A Zen themed party really isn’t that difficult and because things are all about simplicity you can also do one of these parties on a budget, so you don’t have to worry about breaking the bank on it either. This kind of a party needs some simple,  Zen type symbols along with a nature based décor to be able to pull this type of theme off. What you can do is go around and pick some rocks, get origami paper, find some fallen branches out in the back yard, buy some cheap tea lights, find some fabric that’s not been bleeched and someone to help you put it all together.

Here are a few ideas that we’ve used before and I want to share them with you so you can incorporate them into your next party if you want.

Make a Tiny Bamboo Forest for a Centerpiece

You will need to have a bamboo for this one but you can find them at any garden center or nursery. Take and cut several stalks off the green bamboo and make sure they are cut the same length and then you can bind them together with some natural twine. Put the bamboo in a glass container that is square and put some pebbles down at the bottom as an anchor for the bamboo. You can make several of these and then use them on all tables you are using during the party. Once you put them on your tables you can surround them with some small tea lights and then place small pebbles around the centerpieces.

Put Birds on a Branch

If you have kids they will like helping with this one. First you’ll need to go online to get a pattern for an origami crane so you complete this project. Anyway get a variety of different colors of origami paper and follow the direction for making paper cranes. Once you’ve made the amount you want you can then take your cranes and string them on some wire or use thick thread or even some yarn and include some decorative beads on top and below each crane. Strip the bark off of a long branch you may have found in the backyard or at a park and then paint it with a metallic platinum spray paint. After you have let the branch dry hang your cranes from the branch at different lengths and then you can hang this over your buffet table or your dessert table.

Make a Traditional Japanese Split Door Curtain

This is a great way to welcome guests to the Zen party by making a Japanese curtain which is called a noren. You will need to do a little more work with this project because you will need some kind of cotton or linen material that is going to fit inside your doorway and goes two thirds of the way down to the floor. You don’t want it touching the floor. Make sure it is cut in half and hem if needed. Make sure to cut vertically before you paint the kanji symbol on it. Take black paint and make yourself a circle in just one or two fast strokes with a paint brush. Make sure to practice on paper before you do it on your material.Cut the curtain in half and make sure to hem it up as well. You will cut it vertically before or after you paint a big kanji symbol in black in the center of your rectangle. Take a brush and some black paint and then make a circle in one or in two quick brush strokes. This circle means enlightenment. You can use a rod or bamboo stick to hang it over your door.

Welcome Stones

Take some smooth white stones, enough for each guest and use a black permanent  marker and write each guests name on their own stone. On the other side of the stone make sure to include a word of inspiration. Words such as: Peace, Love, Tranquility, Hope, Faith and so on. Then put the stones in a container near where you put the curtain and tell them to find the stone with their name on it. These serve as both party icebreakers and take home favors.

Finally, make sure that your choice of music goes along with the Zen atmosphere that you have created for your party. The last thing you want is something like head banging music or rap to destroy the peace and harmony that you have created for each and every one of your guests. Make sure the music is soothing and calming and is kept at a low volume just loud enough to be heard by everyone when they are talking. You might even consider playing some of those nature themed soundtracks that will create a more natural background for your Zen party.

Make sure that the food you serve at your Zen party are foods that are simple and light just like the party atmosphere. You will want a lot of different kinds of finger foods that are good tasting as well as good for you. You want to also make sure that the beverages are both light and refreshing.

Relax and enjoy!

Nick

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