October 19, 2011

Real Parties: Whimsical "Dia de Los Muertos" Halloween!





Ready for more spooktacular eye candy? Well, we have a couple more wonderful and whimsical ideas for your Halloween Parties today! The first, a really fun and vibrant "Dia de Los Muertos" Inspired party!!


This fabulous "Dia de Los Muertos" / Halloween party was sent in by one of our sweet readers, Deanna from Mirabelle Creations. Deanna describes the details of the party below...


Truthfully, I had never heard of Dia de los Muertos, until two years ago.  My daughter is blessed to take ballet with a former professional dancer from Mexico.  She choreographed a beautiful, educational ballet about Dia de los Muertos, which was performed here in Kentucky.  While performing in the ballet, my daughter (and I) learned so much about the holiday, which occurs every year on November 2nd.   



I started by designing the party printables using brightly colored calaveras, the skull image that is typically associated with the holiday.  The main colors of the printables are black, orange, lime, yellow and purple.  Because Dia de los Muertos is just a couple days after Halloween, I designed the printables so that they could be used with either holiday.  The pictures show cupcakes topped with toppers that say "Dia de los Muerots" or, alternatively, "Happy Halloween" and "Boo!".  

Another traditional Dia de los Muertos element is the use of cut paper banners, papel picados.  Many of the banners are intricately cut works of art.  I created a banner over the top of the table, inspired by the papel picados.  I also used mini banners as a banner on the bread and mason jar glasses.  For the favor boxes, I made paper flowers.  Paper flowers are often used to decorate the altars and graves during Dia de los Muertos.  Another DIY project for the party was the black cake stand.  I could not find a black cake stand, locally.  So, I purchased a $5 glass cake stand from Walmart, then used glass paint to paint it black.  

For the food, I again took a cue from traditional Dia de los Muertos food.  All of the food was handmade.  I thought about ordering some of the food, however, I wanted to try making the food with my daughter as a way of learning more about the cultural aspects of the holiday.  

First, we made pan de muertos, an anise-citrus flavored sweet bread, which translates to bread of the dead.  We also made sugar skulls, using skeleton ice-cube molds that we purchased locally.  Sugar skulls are traditionally made as a gift for a visiting deceased loved one's spirit.  We also made calaveras sugar cookies, using fondant toppers.  Lastly, we made calacas, or skeleton cupcakes.  For a drink, we made canteloupe agua fresca.  

I chose a Dia de los Muertos theme for Halloween because the calaveras image is a fun, festive skull; a change from the typical scary skull used for Halloween.  The bright colors make for a cheerful Halloween party.  Also, the educational aspects of learning about another culture appealed to the mom in me!

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Thank you Deanna, this is such a fun and vibrant party!! I love the Hispanic twists on the Halloween Party and the fun details like the paper flowers really make it very pretty and totally whimsical! :)


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