Take three event planners, one of the top photographers in the country and the need for a picture-perfect baby celebration, and you get the ultimate Moroccan Mommy Shower! This afternoon brunch was inspired by photographer mommy-to-be, Abby Jiu, and her love for details, Insta-worthy moments and her recent “babymoon” to Morocco. The event—held at DAR (which created the perfect white, bright and airy backdrop) in the heart of Washington, D.C.—was overflowing with love and palette-perfect shades of blue and gray. Scroll on for all the swoon-worthy details!
Haute Papier designed the perfect invitation shaped like a Moroccan tile and featured a custom pattern backer. Laura Hooper calligraphed the gray envelopes, which then received vintage postage in shades of blue. The cute “special delivery” postage stamp was a favorite element in anticipation of Abby’s upcoming birth of her baby.
As guests arrived, they were met by a Moroccan tile floor installation for taking shoe selfies and tagging “I have this thing with Abby.” This fun welcome was dreamed up by the creative Laura Ritchie with Grit & Grace as a play on the popular Instagram hashtag #ihavethisthingwithfloors.
Guests mingled outside on the venue’s portico and sipped Moroccan Spritz cocktails in tea glasses (Peach vodka, St. Germain and house-made green tea, finished with a splash of prosecco and garnished with a lemon wheel and star anise). The global inspiration continued all the way into the food with Moroccan-inspired small bite appetizers. Guests lounged on daybeds under a tent to enjoy shade from the sun.
A focal point of the outdoor area was a “Bubble Tea Bar,” which featured a bold blue patterned wallpaper backdrop, blue acrylic sign with white calligraphy and a selection of bubble teas with cotton candy garnish. The tea was served on a white wood laser cut credenza influenced by the ornate architecture found in Morocco.
Evoke’s Jeannette Tavares, who co-hosted the shower, put together a mock nursery where guests left their unwrapped presents, complete with a white clothing rack with tiny navy velvet hangers and custom hang tags for all of the clothes. Guests were provided with tags to label their gifts while allowing everyone else to see what goodies Baby Sunshine received.
Inside, one long table ran the length of the room and featured a bold blue Moroccan tile pattern linen, which played off the pattern created for the invitation backer. Lauryn Prattes, with Lauryn Prattes Styling and Events, worked with White Glove Rental to pull together the perfect modern Moroccan place settings, and the umbrellas from BD3 Design brought the rest of the table to life.
Tiny brass salt and pepper bowls referenced Moroccan metalwork with Arte Italica light blue chargers inspired by handmade pottery. A Turkish towel, Moroccan tile place card and “luggage tag” menu transported guests across the globe.
Crisp white containers and lanterns ran the length of the table and included candles and florals composed of delicate greens and white blooms, including bursting white peonies and ranunculus.
Brunch itself started with a “Baby Boy” Acai Bowl, inspired by Abby’s love for healthy eating and one of the newest food trends, smoothie bowls. These were served in hammered brass bowls and garnished with edible flowers and little dragonfruit “stars.” The next course was a “Falafel Waffle”—a playful take on waffles with a savory Moroccan spin featuring a fresh fattouche salad, zesty sumac vinaigrette and topped with spicy tahini yogurt sauce and mint.
Following brunch, guests retreated back outside for dessert, which (it’s no secret!) is one of Abby’s favorite meals. Buttercream Bakeshop created a completely unique cake inspired by a Moroccan lantern, which featured a layer of white laser-cut fondant on a hexagon-shaped cake. Desserts included mini-eclairs topped with pistachio and gold foil, tile cookies and blood orange panna cotta served in Champagne coupes.
The perfect sweet ending was Abby’s hubby showing up to join in the last bit of fun. We are all anxiously awaiting Baby Sunshine’s arrival this summer!
- Venue: DAR
- Planners: Grit & Grace (Laura Ritchie), Evoke DC (Jeanette Tavares), Lauryn Prattes Styling and Events (Lauryn Prattes)
- Photographer: Lisa Ziesing for Abby Jiu Photography
- Catering: Occasions Caterers
- Decor: BD3 Design
- Rentals: White Glove Rentals
- Linens: La Tavola
- Flowers: Holly Chapple Flowers
- Calligraphy: Laura Hooper Calligraphy
- Cake: Buttercream Bakeshop
- Invitations and custom pattern: Haute Papier
- Day-of Paper: Paper Daisies
- Vintage Postage: Mail Maid Stamps