Harley Party

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There’s something about a Harley®. Maybe it’s the sound of the engine purring to life—or the feel of the wind whipping past as you fly forward on winged wheels—or the freedom of owning the open road. Even if you aren’t a rider, you can enjoy the ambience, so the next time a birthday rolls around, get ready for a road trip out to the patio. A biker theme gives a party a sense of adventure, especially if a sleek motorcycle is the guest of honor. If you don’t have one, borrow one for fast ambience, or call a local dealer to see if you can rent one for the day. Build off that main piece with a bold black and white tablescape that starts with a silvery nubbed silk tablecloth and finishes with fun black and white tableware.


Accent Pieces


Let the gaming begin!  Think games of chance, with tic-tac-toe boards, dice, poker chips, playing cards, chess pieces, and checkers as functional decor. A black photo frame hosts a printout of the menu, while self-serve snacks and beverages let guests help themselves. Bowls of black olives on white cocktail picks, sleek chrome and black cocktail shakers, black martini glasses with swanlike stems, even the black and white vodka bottle, all take on the party palette. An eclectic collection of black chairs illustrates how color can link a variety of styles.

Fashion: Comfy jeans and black boots, glammed up with a beaded black shirt, are biker chic. Don’t forget that helmet and your trusty shades!

Music: Biker boogies are a must. Spin 20th Century Masters—The Millennium Collection: The Best of .38 Special.


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The center of the table is pure glass. Mix shapely glass candelabra with statuesque candlesticks, all bearing black taper candles, to add height and glamour to the table. When darkness hits, the shimmer of the candlelight off the glass and silver is mesmerizing.

Place Settings: The black, white, and chrome place setting takes its cue from the colors of everybody’s favorite “bad boy” toy. Get the table gleaming with glass and silver, then finish out the place setting with stacked square chargers and ornate round plates, topped with black napkins tucked in polka dot bowls. The Swirls and polka dots are surprisingly compatible and playful, showing how different shapes and patterns can harmonize beautifully. Black-handled silverware and black-stemmed wine glasses add eye-catching detail.

Napkins: To add a little more glitz to the tablescape, enclose black napkins in jazzy napkin rings  that can go home with guests. Buy one rope of shiny black beads for each guest and an additional black fabric flower for each female guest. Wrap the beads around the napkins. That’s it for the male guests. For an added embellishment, hot-glue a black flower to the beaded front for female guests. To individualize, use a different black bloom for each guest.


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Place Cards: Inject a stroke of red with playing card place cards. Simply glue a row of three plastic dice together to make a front and back base (two rows of three per place card). Insert a playing card upright between the two rows of dice, glue it all together, and write the guest’s name on top with a red or black marker.

Food and Drinks

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Think macho for the menu. Hot-off-the-grill steaks and cool martinis make a powerful pair, with zesty Tangerine Teriyaki Ribs, deli sides, and crusty store-bought bread rounding out the menu. A silver pedestal of white cupcakes bearing black candles is a delicious sweet end to a night of freewheeling fun.

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