Party gal

Ami McNairn Emery

photo courtesy of ami mcnairn-emery

Ami McNairn-Emery left a decade-long career in social work a year ago to tap into her “creative and crafty” side. She started FABU to YOU, an event-planning business specializing in custom themed parties. McNairn-Emery has two sons, 16 and 13, and has lived in Chico and Durham for most of her life. She said she knew what it was like to work a nine- or 10-hour work day and then come home and have to plan a party. Her new business helps busy folks by taking the stress out of throwing a bash. She sets up everything from start to finish, and provides decorations, activities, you name it. In addition to kids’ parties, she offers baby showers, bridal showers and many other themes. The motto of McNairn-Emery’s business is, “FABU to YOU does it all for you!” Go to or call 228-6914 for more info.

What made you want to switch career tracks?

I was let go from my last job for “not being happy"; those were the exact words. I realized, I’m not happy, I’m dealing with sadness every day, and a light went on in my head. I had to do something beneficial, anything else where I’m still helping with children, but in a celebratory way. [I wanted] the next chapter in my life full of joy, peace and happiness. Life’s too short.

How would you describe yourself?

Outgoing. I have an alter ego, Miss Ami, who has a blonde wig, glasses and a big skirt. She’s there to entertain the kids and put the parents at ease, so they don’t feel like they need to entertain me. It takes the pressure off of them.

What’s a Fabu to You event like?

There are themes: fairy, pirate and garden Victorian. For tweens there’s a diva theme, spa party and sleepover. I design the outfits, decorate the person’s home, set up, do gift bags, food, everything. It’s a service for working parents, busy parents.

Where do you hope to see FABU to YOU go?

Right now I’m just trying to get my name out and keep expanding, and because this is a passion of mine I’d drive to Sacramento. It’s a party, it’s my career, but it’s also so much fun to celebrate in a happy way. I’d like to see FABU as a chain, everywhere. There’s really no limit; I totally see it bigger than I ever imagined.