Hubby and I have a roommate who moved to Austin from Michigan. She is so enamoured of Texas and the West in general, that she decided she wanted a Western themed birthday party. I do love a theme party, so we went all out, of course.
We don’t really have a lot of “western” type stuff to decorate with around the house (shocking!), so we decided to make some cheap, but adorable decorations. Hubby drew things onto crafting foam, which we then cut out, and stuck to the walls with masking tape. It worked great, and there are no holes in the walls or damage to the paint. Here’s a little armadillo he drew, and there were some rattle snakes and lizards roaming around.
Another cheap and amazing decoration idea was these cardboard saloon doors leading into the kitchen. They are so cute I can’t even stand it.
We wanted to get a lot of decorating done cheaply and quickly, so we cut rock formations, inspired by Monument Valley in Arizona, out of that giant paper from a teacher supply store. It was (I think) 89 cents per yard. We also drew the rock formations on the paper interlocking, like puzzle pieces or Pangaea, so that we got a ton of them out of each yard. These were also attached to the walls using loops of masking tape. The tiny cacti are also cut from the foam used for the animals.
This is a real horse skull we’ve had for years, and it is surprisingly handy! It’s on the window sill outside the kitchen as though it’s looking in.
Cowprint balloons: a necessity.
And we found these mustache stickers at Hobby Lobby in the scrapbook sticker section. I think it was $3 for 6 stickers. Obviously, I got the picture after Hubby started having fun.
Back off ladies, that’s MY Hubby with the evil mustache!
People came in a variety of costumes, from an Old West bartender serving tiny bottles of whiskey, to a bandido, to a grimey old prospecter, to more traditional western wear. Since I was running around setting things up (and drinking), I opted for a straw cowboy hat, Wrangler shirt, and cowboy boots.
For food we had Texas beers, hot dogs roasted over the fire outside (as well as vegetable kabobs since we’re progressive, healthy westerners), corn bread, and “tumble weeds”. The “tumble weeds” were chocolate covered chow mein noodles made into little clumps. We also had hummus with veggies and fruit with angel food cake.
Some other ideas we had: give bandanas away as party favors, put a large jar lid in your back pocket to mimic a can of dipping tobacco, have a contest to shoot tin cans off of something with nerf guns, make “cowpies” which would be brownie or Nutella cookies, baked beans, s’mores, and try to lasso the dog.
It was a ton of fun, and everyone had a blast. Plus hot dogs cooked over fire? *Jazz Hands* Amazing! The costumes were epic, and I’m hoping to bum them off someone’s facebook page, since I was stupid and took no pictures. We played music by Patsy Cline, Johnny Cash, Hank Williams, and Willie Nelson. I never would have thought of this theme on my own, and it turned out great!
This movie, Once Upon a Time in the West, is an iconic spaghetti western, with a compelling story. It stars Charles Bronson and Henry Fonda, and was directed by Sergio Leone. Much like other classics, like The Magnificent Seven, this is a tale of justice, and the whole story is completely entrancing. The musical score is haunting, and very distinctive, and I absolutely love it. It adds so much more dimension to the film.
I know what you’re probably thinking. I don’t seem like the type to enjoy westerns. I do love a good spaghetti western though. This one has that perfect blend of style, story, and characters. There are no weak parts. The entire execution is fantastic, and this is spaghetti western at its best.
With spaghetti westerns and B-movies, you kind of have to filter out the good ones. Fortunately, you guys have me to do all the leg work. See how much I love you little minions? I’m willing to sit on my couch, crafting and watching movie after movie, just so you know what to watch. I accept appreciation in the form of gifts and cash.
Spaghetti westerns and B-movies are low budget, mass produced movies, which is why they can be so hit-or-miss. There are definitely some jewels out there (like obviously The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly series), and this is one of them. Once you have seen it (because this link contains **SPOILERS**), check out this music video someone made from the movie and Arcade Fire’s “My Body is a Cage”. It’s phenomenal (my link tool isn’t working right now, so here’s the address: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Pyp34v6Lmcc )
Look, one blog post leading to at least TWO HOURS of entertainment. You’re welcome, minions!