M*A*S*H 60th Surprise Birthday Party

When my Mother-In-Law, Doris, asked me to help with my Father-In-Law’s Surprise 60th Birthday Party…my first thought was, “Oh No, she’s going to ask me to bake a cake!” Not that I really bake, but for a split second, that thought did cross my mind.  When I finally came to my senses, and cleared the frosting from my ears, I realized that she had instead put me in charge of the party invites.  Of course this made more sense, since I’m a Graphic Illustrator and NOT Betty Crocker.  So, with no overall theme for the shindig at that point, my wife Melissa and her sister Rachel quickly started churning their mental wheels to kick up an idea.  With their combined Wikipedia brains, it did not take long.

Their Dad, Norb, is a hugh fan of M*A*S*H and all that the 4077th has to offer…so it was settled that the theme of the party would be just that.

During our evacuation from Hurricane Gustav, Melissa and I were staying with her parents in Missouri.  Since I had my Mac and all of it’s acutriments, I started seeking out some of my Father-In-Law’s Military papers and such and began scanning like crazy just to make sure I had everything that I could possibly need.  I scanned in HIS photos, HIS re-enlistment papers, HIS pencil and paperclips from HIS desk, textures made from crumbled paper from HIS office…and so forth.  Then the work began.

The concept was to incorporate the M*A*S*H theme with a TOP SECRET dossier file.  So the invite would be paperwork inserted into a miniature manila folder and then placed into the envelope for mailing.

Above is the INVITATION: FRONT, BACK, & NOTE CARD (it was inserted in to several of the Invites but not all).

This is the MINIATURE MANILA FOLDER I cut out of a real Manila Folder and printed the 4077th TOP SECRET logo on and put a sticker on the folder tabs with my Father-in-Law’s name.

Above is the ENVELOPE I designed using the same logo as on the Manila Folder.

I also wanted to use the same theme for his BIRTHDAY CARD that my Wife and I gave him.  So I used the same design pieces and concept of placing the card into a Miniature Manila Folder and came up with the card below.

Above is the BIRTHDAY CARD: FRONT, BACK, & ENVELOPE.

Finally, I also made a T-SHIRT design from the elements to give to him.

Above is the FRONT & SLEEVE design of the T-SHIRT.

The whole design theme went over really well, everyone loved it…but most importantly, my Father-In-Law loved it and wore the T-SHIRT with pride.  I’m glad I could contribute to making his 60th Birthday a unforgettable and memorable event.

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