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EVENT REPORT

Fox's 'American Idol' Finale Party Goes for a Darker Look, Guests Go for the Pillows

At the American Idol finale party, logo pillows were a big hit with guests, many of whom walked out the door with them at the end of the evening.

Photo: Sean Twomey/2me Studios

Phillip Phillips took the prize at Wednesday night's season 11 American Idol finale, and afterward an array of guests took home their own souvenirs of the night—in the form of pillows and other logo goodies at the interactive finale party at the Event Deck at L.A. Live. Fox's Karin Pofsky oversaw the party, tapping YourBash for its production.

This year's look and feel took a turn for the moodier, as compared with the settings of past events. The look was darker—although Fox, Ford, and Idol blue, plus Coke red, still served as the basis for the color palette—with a central decor piece made from giant, rotating discs. The round pieces, ranging in size up to 10 feet in diameter, were covered in sequins or logos for a statement-making look that transformed the big white box that is the Event Deck tent in its undressed state. Custom-embroidered logo pillows from YourBash's YourPillows division popped against black couches—that is, until they walked out with guests by the end of the night.

“It's always a challenge to make a party feel new and fresh while trying to keep a consistent brand identity for the show and our sponsors who've been with us for so long, especially while using the same venue year after year,” Pofsky said. “Making the party feel different and fresh each year is my top priority. This year we focused a lot on color, both in the lighting and in the design throughout the party. In a big white tent, lighting can be challenging, but we worked with YourBash and Kinetic Lighting to come up with ways to get the darker, clubbier feel we were going for.”

To further darken the space, YourBash created giant floating blue ceilings using truss structures to keep the light from reflecting off the white tent and add to the treatment. YourBash's Brian Worley explained that versus in the past, when the team has used ground-supported truss to create large-scale design elements, this year organizers made use of nearly 80 motors and suspended nearly everything in the party. “I can honestly say that this party looked nothing like it has the last few years,” Worley said. “It was colorful without looking like a circus while still having a hip, bold feeling.”

AT&T sponsored the popular Ink+Cotton make-your-own-T-shirt station at the back of the tent that drew lines all night. Guests could choose from four designs, including Team Sanchez and Team Philips looks, in various colors. Ford sponsored two interactive graffiti walls, photo ops that allowed guests to choose from various stencils and colors while using virtual spray cans to decorate their photos before printing or uploading to the Web.


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