Story: Susan Darcey | Styling: Chip Jones |
A sophisticated, yet nostalgic evening honors soon-to-be high school graduates
May is one of the busiest months of the year for many families. The school year is winding down and end of the year parties and celebrations abound. For families with high school seniors, the biggest and most-anticipated celebration of all—graduation—is about to take place.
To mark the occasion, Little Rock interior designer, Mara Malcolm, who works alongside her mother Retha Lamb, orchestrated a memorable graduation dinner for a group of Pulaski Academy seniors that are part of a special club which has evolved through the years. “‘The Forever Club,’ as they refer to it, consists of eight friends that have attended school together since preschool,” explains Malcolm.
In keeping with the grandness of the milestone, Malcolm chose an upscale dinner theme. She started with antique china from Noritake to dress up the table. “I wanted the table and the party décor to reflect how valued the kids are and how special they are. That’s why I went the extra mile and it was a little more formal than probably what they are used to,” says Malcolm.
Malcolm used beautiful purples throughout the décor complementing the custom-made toile tablecloth, antique dishes, and serving pieces. To add a little fun and whimsy to the setting, she also included a variety of more casual details such as custom monogrammed laundry bags, striped paper straws juxtaposed with formal stemware, Chinese take-out boxes for sweets to go, and a dinner menu at each place setting that resembled the look of a diploma. “This was a special gathering for close friends and their parents to celebrate a milestone together,” says Malcolm.