In true “Gaia and Nina” style, Nina celebrated her first birthday party last Monday 18th July with a splashing summer family gathering. There were exquisite dresses, flamingos, pineapples, cake and of course, “Il-Quccija”; the Maltese tradition dating back to the 18th century, where babies get to decide their future career path by choosing an object symbolizing that career choice.
Read on to view our favourite moments captured by the amazing M&J Photo Studio International and see what the future holds for sweet baby Nina ;).
- THE THEME.
Francesca Pace, founder of the “Gaia and Nina Blog” and mother to the two little fashionistas says: “Flamingos and pineapples are really in vogue at the moment and I just love the element of colour, humour and charm they brought to the overall feel of the party. We found some lovely accessories and decorations from a number of suppliers namely: Monsoon, Accessorize and Butlers (amongst others).”
Party Tip 1: Choose a theme that is practical in terms of availability of props and decorations; offer guests accessories that are in line with the theme to help them get into the spirit of the event.
2. THE CAKE AND SWEETS TABLE
It’s all in the detail; From “flip-flop shaped cookies” to “flamingo cake-pops”, the cake table was splendidly colourful as can be seen in our favourite images below. “Flora’s cafe, Naxxar really delivered in terms of the level of quality and detail I requested. The “sunglasses shaped cookies” especially were my personal favourite”, said Francesca.
The cake and biscuit stands by “La Coccinella” are absolutely exquisite and really complete the wonderful display.
Party Tip 2: Do not be afraid of colour. For any event, especially a summer children’s party we have three words for you “colour, colour, colour”, particularly when it comes to the cake table which is the focal point of the whole affair. The great thing about having a “sweets display” is that they can also double as lovely take-home party favours.
3. THE OUTFITS:
From cute little swimsuits to gorgeous embroidered gowns, Gaia and Nina did not disappoint in the style department. Whilst the girls were still fresh and excited, we shot some gorgeous pictures of them in their party dresses from Monsoon. Gaia stunned in a soft white dress that comes with a cropped overlay bodice with hand-embellished jewels, and the birthday girl, Nina looked absolutely delightful in an embroidered gown with a glitter-dusted layered tulle-skirt.
Once it was time for the guests to arrive, Gaia and Nina changed into their adorable little bathing suits, again from Monsoon.
Party tip 3: Take any professional photos first thing, before the party even starts. We all know how kids are especially very young ones; it doesn’t take much for them to get overwhelmed and the last thing you want is a crying birthday girl in your treasured birthday pictures. It is ideal that you get the children ready at least half an hour before the guests arrive and take some pictures then.
4. THE “QUCCIJA”
The much-anticipated moment was a nail-biting, tension-filled affair, as little Nina (bless her) took her sweet time to choose the item that best symbolised her future career choice (and who could blame her really?).
Nina was more interested in charming the guests gathered in front of her than taking her pick from the items on display. This resulted in a lot of cheering and applauding from everyone in the hope that she would finally pick something. Gaia especially got very caught up in the whole moment, eagerly telling her, “Nina choose something” which everyone thought was adorable.
So what did Nina pick in the end?
In-keeping with her fashionista lifestyle she picked a shiny nail-file which was placed to represent fashion and style. We foresee that Nina will be following in her mummy’s creative footsteps and give us more and more wonderful fashion moments as the years go by ;P.
Party tip 4: The “Quccija” is a long-standing Maltese tradition, but it is also important to move with the times and include items that represent more contemporary career choices (such as IT and fashion).
Francesca also says “It is really important to have the “Quccija” early on in the party, for the child to be in a good mood and not run the risk of her being overtired. Many people make the mistake of having it at the end, before cutting the cake, but this could result in the child getting overwhelmed and possibly bursting out into tears because of all the stimulation and attention.”
5. THE SMASH CAKE
The smash cake tradition originated in the US and basically consists of letting a one-year old loose with a frosted cake while being pictured by a professional photographer, creating some cheeky and adorable shots mums and dads can treasure forever.
Francesca says “I just couldn’t resist getting in on this tradition, and it all worked out so beautifully especially with the super professional service given by Magdalena Czerny-Muscat from M & J photo studio international. She really goes that extra mile to make every shot spectacular.”
Party tip 5: If you have more than 4 little ones attending the party, it is highly recommended to have some kind of entertainment. This could be in the form of an animator, magician or even a child minder who organises some fun activities with the children. This will help ensure that fun is had by all, including the mummies and daddies :).
Article written by Davinia Mallia Pulé.