Invite: I created a little rhyme for the invitation wording and bought assorted shades of grey card stock to create my invitation. I also bought sunglasses from the Dollar Tree to wrap around the invitation for some added fun. I asked guests to wear shades of grey to the party and bring a "toy" for an exchange.
Entry: You can't have a Fifty Shades party without a contract can you? I modeled the wording of my contract off the contract in the book referring to myself as "The Hostess" and my guests as "The Diners". I tried to stick to the formal language of the contract and included sensual words for added fun. I wrote it all on foam board and hung it from my entry door. Guests signed it before entering!
Decor: When I think of Christian Grey, I think sophisticated as well as a bit naughty. I wanted my decor to reflect this without being over-the-top sexual. I set my table with a black tablecloth and tea lights (some elevated) running down the center. Along the center of the table I also had handcuffs (thanks to the law and legal teacher at my work), a copy of the novel, a whip (from my brother's Indiana Jones Halloween costume), and a grey tie (thanks hubby).
I used my Cricut again to cut out handcuffs to use as wine charms. I cut them out in various shades of grey.
On the dessert table I created two candy jars with red candy (inspired by the Red Room of Pain). I labeled the red cinnamon candies "Hard Limits" and the red licorice straws "Soft Limits" to again play up the contract wording.
I also designed wine labels to go around the wine bottles. The first bottle we opened for the evening was labeled "Sexy" and each bottle following got a little darker word! If you would like the template for these labels, comment below and I will send it. It isn't anything fancy, but it added some humor to the party.
Activity: Besides the gift exchange, I also had guest's share a fun story. I called them Sexual Deviance cards just for fun, but the story did not have to be sexual. We had fun guessing the writer later in the party!
Menu: I created my menu around some of the language used in the book. I displayed the names of each menu item as if it was an email from Anastasia to Christian or vice versa following the format in the book. Both of these characters have Subject lines that are clever as well, so I tried to do that. Again, if you would like copies of these, I can email you the template.
I started with SUBmissive Sandwiches. These were easy to make Philly Cheese steak sandwiches. The meat and buns were from Trader Joes. The rest of the sandwich was Provolone cheese slices and sliced red and green peppers.
Bow TIED-UP Pasta Salad was next. You can put anything in pasta salad, but I chose to include tomatoes, green and orange peppers, black olives, and kidney beans. I used 1 1/2 boxes of 16 ounce bow pie pasta. Here is the recipe for the Italian Dressing I made to use:
1 large clove garlic, finely chopped
1/3 cup vegetable oil
3 tablespoons olive oil
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
2 tablespoons fresh basil or 1 tablespoon dried basil
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon oregano leaves, crushed
freshly ground black pepper
Process all ingredients in a food processor or blender until thoroughly combined. Then add this to the pasta salad mixture an allow it to marinate.
I also served a fruit salad I called Forbidden Fruit. These three entrees really filled us up so I was glad I did not try to serve more. Plus two of them can be made ahead of time, so that was nice in terms of the hostess part.
For dessert, I served two cupcakes. The first was Vanilla Cupcakes with "Whipped" Cream Icing and Strawberries in honor of Anastasia and the constant reference to "vanilla" in the book. I found the cute grey cupcake wrappers at Michaels.
In honor of Christian Grey and the red velvet bedding in the Red Room of Pain, I served red velvet cupcakes with a cream cheese frosting. I also added a chocolate handcuff to the top. To make the handcuffs I melted chocolate chips, put the melted chocolate in a zip lock with the corner cut, and then pipe/draw the handcuffs onto wax paper. I put the paper in the refrigerator to harden. Then just peeled off and placed on the cupcake before serving.
Red Velvet Cupcakes
2 1/2 cups flour
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup butter, softened
2 cups sugar
1 cup sour cream
1/2 cup milk
1 (1ounce) bottle McCormick Red Food Color
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
Vanilla Cream Cheese Frosting
1 (8ounce) package cream cheese, softened
1/4 cup butter, softened
2 tablespoons sour cream
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 (16 ounce) box confectioners' sugar
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix flour, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt in medium bowl. Set aside. Beat butter and sugar in large bowl with electric mixer on medium speed 5 minutes or until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs, one at a time. Mix in sour cream, milk, food coloring, and vanilla. Gradually beat in flour mixture on low speed until just blended. Do not overbeat. Spoon batter into 30 paper-lined muffin cups, filling each 2/3 full. Bake 20 to 25 minutes until toothpick inserted into cupcake comes out clean. Cool in pans on wire rack 5 minutes. Remove from pans; cool completely. Frost with icing.
To make the icing: Beat cream cheese, softened butter, sour cream and vanilla extract in large bowl until light and fluffy. Gradually beat in confectioners' sugar until smooth. Pipe onto cupcakes.
Favor: I made cake pop Ben Wa balls for my favor since they are a fairly significant part of the book. I used the same vanilla cupcake batter I used for the cupcakes to make cake balls. I then melted white chocolate to dip them in and to hold the black licorice in place. After this set, I used Wilton's Silver Spray to give them the metallic look. I placed these in a favor bag with a tag playing up the "inner goddess" reference from the book. Again, if you want to host this party and want this template, just email me/comment below!
We had so much fun at this party just laughing and chatting about the book. It was definitely a fun party to host and the girls had a great time!
Thanks again for checking out my blog...