When I began planning Iya’s drive-thru birthday party, I imagined a little balloon arch and a pop-up movie screen with a few accent balloons on the corner; maaaybe some cushions thrown around the front of our house for some comfy (safely distanced) seating. Literally, that’s it!
Some serious magic happens whenever @SoCalEventPlanners & @HelloKismet get together! This was the third party we planned together and I walked out just as blown away as I did 3 years ago when they did my baby shower. They truly have the Midas touch and you’d think I wouldn’t be so surprised still! Thank you ladies for creating the most magical day for my big girl!
Waseem & I genuinely love to host, so this was such a great opportunity to finally see all of our friends again after 3 months of quarantine and send them off with some yummy treats (& favors for the kids!) to enjoy!
I asked Iya for months what theme she wanted for her birthday, and she always said rainbow! My initial direction was “pastel rainbow theme” and we began to build from there. I couldn’t think of a solid title though.. “Iya’s Dream” “Iya’s World of Color”.. I didn’t love any of it. I don’t think Waseem was even fully paying attention while I was complaining about not having the perfect pun lol “Young, Wild, & Three” is the popular one but didn’t go with our theme and he so casually suggested “Threenage Dream”
The perks of being married to an ad-man lol!
Planning & Styling: @socaleventplanners
I never understood the importance of an event planner until Shumaila and I worked together on our baby shower; and really it didn’t fully register until I showed up at the party! I was so used to busting my butt when hosting, running around the entire time, forgetting a million little things, and barely getting to enjoy myself.. leaving it to the pros not only creates the perfect event, but also a perfect experience for yourself. Shumaila literally thinks of every little thing, handles all the vendors, and makes sure everything’s executed perfectly & running smoothly.
When I say she thinks of everything.. I really mean all of it! She custom branded every detail to create a truly cohesive experience – from the water bottles, food cart menus, favors, individually packaged treats.. everything! She got all the custom signage, acrylics, & vinyls made from @starsanddreamsco
So much thought & love has been put into all of our events and I’m forever grateful, thank you @socaleventplanners!
Design Concept & Backdrop: @hellokismet
Saadia is so brilliant at what she does! I love watching her design Desi weddings and children’s parties with the same level of detail & glamour. She’s always been able to stretch my budget and make whatever I’m working with look like a million bucks! For this set up, I was expecting a little circular backdrop from her for our balloon vendor to dress up… wrong! I was completely confused when they started unloading panel after panel from their truck lol! I honestly don’t even know how she dreamt it all up!
Susana actually did Iya’s birthday last year too, but with a different company! It was kismet (ha!) to accidentally find her again at the last minute when our original vendor had to cancel. Balloons are another skill I didn’t quite understand until I saw the creative process last year. There is so much design and preparation that goes in ahead of time, creativity with creating custom colors, and so much attention to detail while setting up! She is so brilliant at what she does and I’m so happy we found each other again!
Since we knew we couldn’t hang out & socialize as normal, we didn’t want the drive out to be anti-climatic for our guests. What better way to make sure everyone has a great time than with treats!?
@LAChaiCart has been a huge favorite every time they do a party with us! The Chai is always on point and the biscuits are so nostalgic & beautifully decorated! They’ve recently expanded to NJ/NY btw for my East Coasters! Little desserts were done by their sister brand, @minisbymara!
Shumaila brought on @thejollysheep & @paletaplease for cotton candy and popsicles! Perfect for a summer kids’ party! They were both so sweet and lovely to work with, we had such a cute fleet of food carts going!
I first met @knafehqueens at a friend’s baby shower a few years ago and its been all love ever since! She makes THE BEST knafeh and always makes sure we have a stash in our freezer lol! She is always so generous every time we host and converts all of our guests to knafeh addicts too! We had individually packaged knafeh cupcakes to pass to cars and even a 3-tier knafeh cake! DROOL!
Since people were going to be driving by at different times I had to get creative when it came to the cake-cake! I didn’t want to cut the cake on display and make a huge mess so I had @sweetestgallery make a beautiful “dummy” cake for us as a centerpiece, to avoid waste! But, you can’t have a birthday party without birthday cake either so @SomethingMeetha baked a simple nostalgic sheet cake for us to plate and pass to cars! They also did a little cake for us to cut as a family earlier in the day before the party, serious sugar overload!
Tart Cake: @crumbles__patisserie
Paper Partyware: @harlowandgrey
Kids Activities & Favors
I was really looking forward to throwing Iya a proper kids’ birthday party this year where she could finally play and do crafts with her friends now that she isn’t a baby anymore. Unfortunately because of the pandemic, this wasn’t really an option but Shumaila to the rescue as usual! She coordinated with @Little_Artist_Party to create to-go activity boxes for all the kids – a favor & activity in one! Brilliant!!
We did give our guests the option to get out of their cars and socialize at a distance so @cotherusticchic also set up a little station for @Little_Artist_Party‘s art supplies! Iya was sooo excited and wanted get straight to painting before guests even started driving through!
My only real request & contribution to activity ideas was a pop up theatre so people could sprawl around at a distance and enjoy themselves or even watch from their cars! @vitaperfetta set up an inflatable screen, speakers, & projector for us to watch a movie. Important to note that this isn’t the easiest to pull off for young kids with summer birthdays because sunset is SO late, we could only get through a little bit! Older kids would absolutely LOVE this though! The AV was great for music though until we started the movie! @abovethetoppartyrentals came through with the sweetest kids’ lounge furniture!
Last but not least, a HUGE thank you to our photographers & videographers for perfectly capturing the day for us to enjoy forever!
Nicole & I are both Michigan natives and its been so great to watch her journey here in LA! She is such a talented photographer and it was an honor to have her capture the day, most of the photos here are by her! Nicole herself has such a beautiful insta-feed of personal content that her assistant, Jasmine, helps her with! I’ve been dying to see Jasmine in action since she has the most unique video style and was so happy that she joined us in capturing Iya’s party! Her video literally brought me to TEARS lol!! I LOOOVE me some talented female creatives!!
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Second Photographer: Thanh! He brought the most positive energy and Iya seriously loved him!!! His love for photography is so pure, he helped us capture so many details just because he wanted to! Thank you!
The beautiful video near the top of this post is by @RL_Footage!