Photography by Joseph Miner with a few iPhone exceptions. THANK YOU, Joseph, for taking these pictures!
To set the stage for my Phantom Masquerade, I sprinkled faux rose petals in the entry way, on the dining room table, and along my kitchen bar counters. Since the famous Phantom of the Opera poster has a red rose on it, I of course had to run with the theme. I bought four dozen red roses and had bouquets around the house, including a single rose with the wine and in the guest bath. Never forget how elegant a single rose looks!
There’s a whole bit in Phantom of the Opera that features a lagoon so I used floating candles in lieu of votive candles. I don’t like to have too many scented candles burning at once. I only had a scented candle in the guest bathroom and one in the great room. (I’ll tell you all about those candles later this week, so stay tuned!) I filled vases halfway with water, added a few rose petals to the water for effect (plus one of the forty roses fell apart – waste not!) and popped a couple mini floating candles in each.
Don’t forget about lighting your outdoor living space for parties! I borrowed a few of my mom’s lanterns for my courtyard, burned a mosquito-repellant candle, and strung up mercury lights for ambiance.
Speaking of lighting, I didn’t have overhead lights on except for the hallway leading to the guest bathroom. Other than that, the house was lit with candles and lamps. I have a dimmer switch in my dining room so I kept the lighting very low.
I stuck a couple of extra masks in a few key places. I really loved how one looked hanging on my entry way mirror.
Music always helps set the mood at a party. Thanks to family friend Carol, I played an Andrew Lloyd Webber CD for the first hour and a half as guests were arriving and eating. After that I played an upbeat dance mix.
I asked my guests to wear formal attire and masks. I was a bit worried requesting formal attire but my friends had a lot of fun with it. My favorite look of the night was my friend Yoli, who I thought really captured Christine. My favorite mask had to be Peter’s epic gold horned creation. He looked so fierce!
For the table I wanted romantic French drama to uphold the Phantom Masquerade theme. I pulled my Eiffel tower from my bar to use as the centerpiece, sprinkled red rose petals as a sort of table runner, anchored the table with two large rose bouquets, and only used crystal, silver, and marble serving pieces. The marble, silver, and red really popped against the black tablecloth, which helped give the table a sort of spooky yet sexy vibe.
I stew over menus for weeks before parties. I had a few guests coming with dietary restrictions but I also wanted to stay within the Phantom Masquerade theme. Here’s what I came up with.
Cheese and Charcuterie Board
Learn how to assemble a charcuterie and cheese board here.
Cranberry, Grape, and Pistachio Bulgur Wheat Salad
Flank Steak and Gorgonzola Crostini
Get the crowd-pleasing recipe for Flank Steak and Gorgonzola Crostini here.
Cut zucchini, squash, and bell peppers into slices. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Apply olive oil with a pastry brush. Grill on medium high about four minutes per side or until you have nice grill marks. Delicious served cold!
Blackcurrant Brie Bites
Get the recipe for Blackcurrant Brie Bites here.
Grapes, Parmesan Crackers, dip, and other assorted bites
Assorted Chocolate Covered Almonds, Strawberries, Figs
Red Velvet Rose Cake
Bake your favorite red velvet cake recipe in a rose bundt pan for 40-60 minutes. Start doing the toothpick test at 40 minutes if you have a convection oven. Let cool in pan for 10 minutes then pop out of the pan and cool completely. Dust with powdered sugar.
Dark Chocolate Popcorn with Sea Salt
Get the recipe for Dark Chocolate Popcorn with Sea Salt here.
Fiori di Sicilia Sugar Cookies
Get the recipe for Fiori di Sicilia Sugar Cookies here. Just add orange food coloring or gel paste to dough along with the extract. Roll and cut with pumpkin cookie cutter. Sprinkle with white sprinkles before baking.
Get the recipe for Gilded Brownies here.
Mini Pumpkin Oreo Cheesecakes with Cinnamon Whipped Cream
Get the recipe for Mini Oreo Cheesecakes with Cinnamon Whipped Cream here.
Live in Dallas-Fort Worth? The Phantom of the Opera runs October 20-30 at stunning Bass Performance Hall. Get tickets to see The Phantom of the Opera at Bass Performance Hall here.