Theme : Oriental Dumpling Baby Shower
Venue : The Ding’s, The Hub SS2
Photos : Captured Gladness
Styled just a few months ago by our co-founder Laverne, this celebration was probably one of her favourite personal projects!
Read more about what she has to share in creating this oriental dumpling themed baby shower below.
Thank you Gladys for having me be part of this celebration. When I first heard it was a dumpling themed party, I was so excited and asked Gladys if I could help style the party. As I was also bed resting post my IVF procedure at the time, most of the planning and purchasing had to be done online. Thank god for technology! Besides that, it was also such a bliss working with the few of Careen’s superwomen girlfriends in setting up and making everything look pretty on the day of the party.
Once the venue was confirmed to be at one of Careen’s favourite restaurants The Dings KL, I made a trip prior to food taste and also “recce” the place to see how we could make use of the existing setting in terms of decor, setup and menu (food). This was primarily to minimize one-time purchases of props/decor items and to keep the party budget-friendly too.
To be honest, it was truly a challenge making sure things turned out presentable and pretty while matching the decor to the desired theme, all at the same time minimizing wastage and keeping the entire event as low waste (and green) as possible. So here I am listing down some of the thought process I had while planning and styling this event in hopes that you too could be inspired. If you are interested to plan a low waste/low impact party, feel free to chat with me and I’d love to see how I could help make your event fun and exciting yet eco-friendly and low impact.
So how exactly did we go about it? Let me guide you through the individual elements of this party!
Yes. yes and yes to e-invites! There are many free templates available online these days so instead of sending boring text messages to invite your guests, why not try out e-invitations. They can be easily created and if you are a bit more adventurous, you could also explore your creativity by using apps like Canva to design your e-invite. There are also many free apps out there that you could use to help manage your RSVPs as well.
2. Diaper Cake
It was a dumpling theme and I was beyond excited to make this diaper cake that looks similar to a dumpling. Of course, I added a dumpling cushion on top to make it much cuter.
When it came to the choice of diapers, I opted for K-MOM. An award- winning ISO certified and FDA approved brand, K-MOM prides itself on making baby products that are safe, easy and free from harmful ingredients. Accidentally stumbled across the brand when I was in search of plain white no-print diapers for the diaper cake. Decorated the plate holders on the sides with oriental knots that symbolizes good luck and blessings. Tada! 10/10 cuteness!
The existing minimalist + oriental setting of the venue itself made styling this party a lot easier for us. We were able to make use of certain elements that were readily available and further enhance them with suitable props.
We decided to use the functional room partition as our feature backdrop. It added some dimension to the background and the design also matched the party’s oriental theme. Inspired by an existing wall promo poster, we also put up a dumpling baby shower poster on the wall behind. It was a nice little detail that completed the overall backdrop.
We used the existing dining table and bench from the venue for our feature table. Though it doesn’t seem like much but it really simplified our decor setup in terms of packing and setup time. Hence, my personal tip for those planning a theme party, choose a venue that matches your theme (or vice versa). It makes party planning much easier and it could also minimize the overall impact from the celebration. An alternative option is to choose a venue that is versatile so it doesn’t take up too much resources (effort, props, money) to bring out your desired theme. For instance, instead of planning a garden tea party at a restaurant, opt for an outdoor venue or a cafe with lots of greenery to help better realize your theme.
Majority of the decor you see on the feature table are props reused from our oriental wedding decor set. I hope it didn’t come off too wedding-y and the two cherry blossom flower bundles totally made the setting super CNY/spring- looking.
To make the feature table more personal, we also printed out Careen’s maternity photos beautifully captured by Captured Gladness. For a little fun, we added a pop-up dumpling cut out on careen’s baby bump to match the theme of the baby shower.
While planning this celebration with the girlfriends, we were mindful of cost and wanted to minimize food wastage wherever possible. Hence, instead of getting a full-on dessert table, we decided to go with some simple dim sum- Gwai Fa Gou (Osmanthus jelly) and peanut sesame balls for the feature table spread.
We ordered dumpling sugar cookies (individually wrap) so they could serve as decor for the feature table and as door gifts for guests to bring home after.
For this party, we printed out wish cards and placed them on every individual seating so they would look like menu cards. Guests had a fun time writing down messages and drawing how baby dumpling would look like lol. Honestly speaking, rather than to serve as an activity, my personal goal was actually for it to make the table setting a little bit more “atas” 😝.
Other than that, guests were completely blown away by the hilarious singing performances when we played “baby karaoke” with a portable mic. Quite handy if you are doing a small intimate party and would like to amp up the fun and noise in the room halfway through 😆.
6. Guest Tables
Last but not least, guest tables! To be honest I spent quite a lot of thought on the guest table arrangement and setting. We decided to combine tables to fit 8-10pax. This way when it came to food, it could be easily shared among guests.
For table decor, I simply made use of what was already provided by the restaurant – sake bottles were used for flower arrangements, and a small request was made to lay out chopsticks on the table for a more refined setting.
To further highlight the oriental theme and as I mentioned earlier, to achieve a more “atas” look, I also made a few purchases.
Paper crane – it has been ages since I folded paper art. I decided to have these DIY paper cranes double function as decor/ chopstick holders which turned out really well.
Bamboo placemat – Honestly the placemats were not necessary, but at the time I felt it would make the overall table setting stand out even more so I gave in and bought them. All the placemats have since been added into my inventory for rental and decor so YES, if you are planning for an intimate oriental themed party and looking to rent this for your decor, you are more than welcomed! :)
I wanted a pop of yellow and blue (instead of just red everywhere), so we went with yellow napkins and blue porcelain plates to add some colour and contrast. A more sustainable choice would be to get cloth napkins but unfortunately I wasn’t able to find any available options within my budget.
Finally, one of my personal favourites would be the place cards with guest names written in Chinese calligraphy by Qer Shin. A nice personalized touch that guests could also bring back as keepsake after the party!
And that’s all from me for now, until next time!