Backyard Picnic Bar Mitzvah

For those who don’t follow me on Facebook or Twitter, you may not know that I’m undergoing a site makeover and re-design.  I thought it would launch yesterday but as technology usually goes, it hasn’t happened yet!  In the mean time I thought I would share a recent party I styled for a client – a Casual Backyard Picnic Style party.  The photography isn’t the best, and the impending thunderstorms created a last minute scramble to move some things indoors.  But at least the client & their guests were happy!   
You’ve probably not seen a bar mitzvah this casual before – but the client wanted picnic-style on a budget and that’s what we gave her.
We ended up having to move the photo booth area to the covered front porch, and the dessert table into the dining room.  The lighting was very dim (which means grainy pics) but you can see most of the details.  I covered a paper mache “L” (for Larson) with moss and hung photos of the guest of honor on the backdrop to add personal touches.
The pie pops from Cakewalk Desserts, displayed in mini bales of hay were a hit with the guests, as were the cupcakes in a jar I put together.  I got the mini spoons from Think Garnish and stamped “eat cake” on them – these were my favorite favors ever!  These are really small jars from Walmart, literally the size of a cupcake.  You can’t see the frosting covered by the lid. 
The backyard was covered with a tent so I was able to proceed as planned…with one caveat.  I had planned on 4 tabletops but when I got there, there were 5!  I had to spread out the centerpieces in order to cover the 5 tables.  Oh well, gotta roll with the punches when working on real events!
The guest book area was set up with 2 large canvas boards and paint pens so guests could write messages to Larson on his special day.  These can be hung in his room afterwards.
All the printed items were by the fantabulous Kori of Paper & Pigtails.  You may notice this is very similar to the Backyard Printable set she shared.  Since we worked together on this event she simply changed the colors a bit for the “summer party” and offered it as a free download exclusively to CAH readers.  Also re-purposed were extra napkin pockets I had made, and the fabric wrapped cans holding flowers.  I love recycling!
I hope this party design relays 2 important messages:  1) Real parties are much less “perfect” than styled photo shoots; and  2) Sometimes you have to go with the flow & Make It Work!


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About Chris

Chris Nease is a party stylist and home entertaining expert with over 15 years of experience. In addition to her work as founding editor of Celebrations At Home, Chris is an editorial stylist and has contributed to, SheKnows, and countless other websites. Most recently she was featured in Celebrate magazine, and her work has been published in Woman's World, Ocala Style, Yum Food & Fun for Kids, and Cottages & Bungalows.


  1. Jenny from Crossing the Bugger-Dixon Line says:

    Love the favors and such fun, down home details!

  2. Kori Clark says:

    OMGosh! I love everything! I love the mason jars filled with moss and rocks, and I love the spoons with the cake…and I love the hay and that adorable pennant banner! You did a great job, regardless of the "real party" mishaps that are bound to happen! =)

  3. Stacy @ She's {kinda} Crafty says:

    This turned out great! I wish when I was on the bar & bat mitzvah circuit when I was 11-13 more of the parties would have been like this! It's like the anti-bar mitzvah bar mitzvah! Love it!

  4. Love it! It’s definitely not your typical Bar Mitzvah, and that’s what makes it super cute!

  5. Love it! The favors were adorable. The spoon was the perfect touch.

  6. Love this! Great job. Also love the new site!

  7. STUNNING!! LOVE the new fabulous look!! LOVE, LOVE, LOVE it to bits!!
    Congratulations party fairy!!

    Stunning styling also!!!!!!!!!

  8. It turned out great!!! Nothing like all the “real” life dilemmas to fix but you pulled it off brilliantly!!!!

  9. Oh. I love every detail of this event! Simply wonderful.

  10. You always amaze me! Everything looks beautiful! And I just saw the new site – you have been soooo busy!!! It’s FABULOUS!! Congrats!

  11. Hi Chris! I’m stalking your blog this morning looking for your pie pop vendor because I remember seeing your party pics and loved that idea for our 4th of July at home, thanks!

  12. I love the pie pops! I just did a cowboy party and I wish I would have seen this first. Mine is here:


  1. […] ninguna escapadita al campo.Por ahora, nos consolaremos viendo ejemplos como éste…Fotos: Celebrations at HomeComparteFacebookTwitterEtiquetas fiestas al aire libre, picnic Vota!1 ComentarioLaura dice:3 […]

  2. […] Celebrations at Home founder and event planner Chris Nease sent us this great casual Bar Mitzvah backyard picnic she created for a client. They wanted a backyard-style party on a budget. […]

  3. […] party I did for Celebrations and displayed them in mini bales of hay; I also served them at this backyard picnic last year {although those were purchased from a […]

  4. […] party I did for Celebrations and displayed them in mini bales of hay; I also served them at this backyard picnic last year {although those were purchased from a […]

  5. […] cute item to add to your outdoor celebration. They are biodegradable and you can dress them up with stamp & ink, embellish them with decorative tape, paint the handle, or buy them with the decorative details […]

  6. […] how many different types of treats can we put in a jar? We’ve seen cupcakes in a jar, molten lava cakes in a jar, pie in a jar….and now Cheesecake in a Jar! This is just one more […]

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