4th of July is over now, but don’t toss out your red, white and blue just yet! Keep the party going with Bastille Day! After the last year and a half, I am looking for any reason to celebrate. From big summer remembrances like Memorial Day or the Fourth of July, to more informal celebrations like the Summer Solstice or the local county fair, none seem as exotic as Bastille Day.
I always like to think of Kirsten Dunst as Marie Antoinette (although the time is more accurately represented by Les Miserables than Sophia Coppola’s stylized aesthetic dream). There are luxurious gowns, parties, and the sweet naughtiness of doing what you want; it is everything that summer should be. So, even though France’s independence is a celebration of an end to tyranny, that doesn’t mean we can’t bring the spirit of frivolity to you—because when we say let them eat cake, we mean it!
What’s Bastille Day?
Much like our Fourth of July, Bastille Day celebrates France’s independence every year on July 14th. The Bastille was a structure originally built to protect Paris from English attacks; later, it became a prison for wealthy citizens and spies. On July 14, 1789, revolutionaries swarmed the prison to take the gunpowder housed inside, signaling the beginning of the French Revolution. Today, France marks the occasion with a military parade, fireworks, and spending time with friends and family. Check out our roundup for our best Bastille Day inspiration!
Let them Eat Cake
The French are known for their bakeries: cream puffs, fresh bread, and macarons are a thing of beauty in a shop window or neatly lined up in a glass counter, so why not start with a cake. Best for a backyard party or picnic, a cake is a simple crowd-pleasing dessert—especially when it has a Parisenne topper. Designed by illustrator Jessie Kenelos Weiner, author of Paris in Stride, this will be a perfect addition to your Bastille festivities to make you feel like you’re in the heart of the city (and you can download it here for free)!
Need something to place your food on? I love these French placemats for my Bastille festivities. Figures like Marie Antoinette and Napoleon Bonaparte can guard the dessert table or be a great coloring craft for the kids. In this picture, I’ve paired it with a red gingham tablecloth and blue and red plates to match the French flag.
Fit for a King
Rather focus on your guests attire? How about these Bastille Day crowns that celebrate the city where it all took place? Featuring notable landmarks like the Eiffel Tower and the Arc de Triomphe, kids and adults will not only look festive for the party, but also great in the pictures you’ll have to look back on.
While I love a good paper crown, if you’re looking for something less literal, may I suggest our red, white, and blue floral crowns. They’ll still mimic the colors of the french flag and will never be considered a fashion faux pas!
Bastille Day Decoration Inspo
Now you may be thinking how do I decorate for Bastille Day? There are two great things about this French holiday: 1. The American flag and the French flag share the same three colors and 2. Bastille Day comes after the Fourth of July. Taking these two things into account, it has never been easier to reuse decorations from one holiday to another! Or in this case, you can leave them up an extra couple weeks without feeling guilty. I’m looking at you, outdoor Christmas lights! 😉
No matter how you choose to celebrate Bastille Day, I’d love to hear your plans in the comments, and if you decide to make any crafts, tag me with #Lars Parties!