Backdrop

"I made marquee lights out of papier-maché letters from the hobby store, globe string lights, and loads of gold and gold-glitter spray paint," Gretchen says. "They added that wow factor to the party and really helped complement the vintage magic-show vibe I was going for. I hung them using fishing line strung from the backdrop stand — definitely a two-person job.

"The backdrop was made out of four inexpensive satin tablecloths from Amazon.com that were much cheaper than fabric. I used clamps from the hardware store to attach them to an old photography backdrop stand and draped them to resemble a stage curtain. Warning: a steamer will be your new best friend. Wrinkles. Oh, the wrinkles."

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