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Start scheming now for your Mardi Gras-themed bash

With just one month to go until Fat Tuesday storms the nation, those of us with February birthdays have a new option to consider when planning for their festivities. Why not let the carnival spirit seep into your yearly extravaganza? After all, you don't have to be born on February 16 to bring the best of this jazzy phenomenon to your happy occasion.

Make sure to incorporate plenty of purple, green and gold into the decor, as these are the signature colors that represent Mardi Gras. Besides that, having too much color is better than not having enough, as this vibrant celebration is all about the loud and the expressive.

For food, opt for some Cajun-style numbers to bring the exotic flavors of New Orleans to wherever you may be.

Next, you'll want to make sure guests are properly dressed, so have plenty of feathered masks, colorful beads and hats to go around. These all make excellent birthday party favors and pair well with with mini cocktail shakers, themed playing cards and dolphin wine bottle stoppers.