Nathan loves the idea of travel and seeing new things, so his “Travel in the 1940s” theme for his Bar Mitzvah was a good fit. At his reception, each of the 10 tables contained a unique-themed centerpiece from Israel, France, Egypt, the US, Italy, Brazil, Canada, Mexico, Greece, or England. He and his family spent months before his big day collecting props and souvenirs from each of those countries to decorate the reception hall. Nathan and his dad also custom-built table centerpieces of a sphinx, an Egyptian pyramid, and the Eiffel Tower. While friends and family contributed a lot of the props from their own collections, Nathan’s mom was surprised to find that they already had a lot of vintage souvenirs and travel-related items at home. They scoured local thrift stores for the pieces they couldn’t find at home or at a friend’s home. Every decor detail was covered!
As part of his Bar Mitzvah, Nathan requested that guests bring canned goods and non-perishable food items for donation to a local food pantry. To tie in with both his vintage luggage and the donation of grocery items, Nathan offered reusable grocery bags that were screenprinted with a globe to each guest as party favors.
When I met with Nathan and his family to discuss his 40s-travel-themed invitations for his upcoming Bar Mitzvah, I was impressed by his knowledge of other countries and their cultures. Nathan wanted his invitation to look like a vintage suitcase loaded with travel stickers, so we made a folding invitation using brown cardstock that opened like a suitcase. The “suitcase” contained stickers from his 10 chosen countries, and a luggage tag announcing, “Traveling to: Nathan’s Bar Mitzvah.” Because the family had planned an entire weekend of events, we chose to use the space inside the suitcase to mimic a train ticket and itinerary, complete with travel stamps. For the reception, we created special guest book pages to be placed at each table and then combined into a book after the event. Each guest book page contained a different country sticker from the “suitcase” as well as other cultural references from that country. Guests were given colored pencils to leave Nathan their message, drawings, and wishes of good luck.
In addition to his pride in becoming a man and the years of studying and work that led to his becoming a Bar Mitzvah, Nathan’s favorite things surrounding his day included all the planning details. He had a really good time working with his dad to build centerpieces, and working with the baker to design his cake and choose his flavors.
Thank you, Nathan, for letting Dogwood Blossom Stationery be part of your Bar Mitzvah!
Photography: Friends of the family
Centerpieces: Nathan & Family
Invitations & Guestbook Pages: Dogwood Blossom Stationery & Invitation Studio
Cake: Heavenly Bake Shoppe, Cocoa Village, FL