Sydney turning 4 felt like a land-mark birthday and planning her party was a labour of love for me.
I honestly put as much effort into planning her party as I did into our own wedding; thinking about every detail and wanting to make sure I got everything right so she would remember it always.
The brief I got from Sydney was “a princess party”, which was a fairly easy as there are a silly amount of ideas online. Typing in “princess party” into Pinterest brings up hundreds and thousands of ideas – almost too many!
I booked a local hall and arranged for Elsa and Anna from Fairytale Entertainment to run the actual games (the thought of trying to manage 20 + 4 year old princesses made me panicky!) and I found an invitation template from Etsy that I purchased and then populated and organised for them to be printed.
I also contacted Ellie from What about the Kids and asked her about children’s tables and chairs, as although tables and chairs were available at the hall I liked the idea of it looking like a banqueting table with coloured bows on the chairs to add to the “royal-ness” of it! Ellie was amazing and we settled on white chairs and tables with pink and blue bows for the older children, and a larger wooden table and chairs for all of the younger siblings.
Once the logistics were sorted I could indulge in all of the fun details and get started on things to make to decorate the hall. I set up a board on Pinterest and got going…it was hard to know when to stop!
I knew I wanted a “display table” which would have the children’s food on it and as Jack is a carpenter, I asked him whether he could made a basic frame, and he agreed and made a simple structure that was attached to a paste table which ended up being set up in our dining room for weeks whilst I made things to go on it.
These are the things I ended up making:
- Baby Food Jars – Baby food jars that I bought from eBay, with sprayed lids and mini plastic tiara’s stuck onto the top. The jars were then filled with pink smarties and used on the display but then given out in the party bags.
- Fruit Wands – Wands made from blueberries, a strawberry and a watermelon star.
- Cupcakes with Wands – Cupcakes with coloured icing with plastic wands stuck in the middle and then presented on mirrors.
- Biscuits – Princess themed biscuits.
- Cake Dome with Fairy Lights – A plastic cake dome with fairy lights inside.
- Photo Frames – Gold frames from Poundland with photoshopped pictures of Sydney inside.
- Plastic Trifle bowl – Bowl filled with Gold Coins and plastic rings, with a crown on top.
- Faux Flowers – Flowers in spray-painted jars with cardboard “4s” inside.
- Plastic sweet jars – Jars filled with flumps and flying saucers.
- Boxes – Wrapped up boxes to give things height.
- Backdrop – Made from plastic tablecloths threaded onto elastic and then fixed to the wooden frame.
- Pom poms – Paper pom poms suspended from the frame.
- Balloons – Balloon wands in a giant pink tub
- Popcorn – Sparkly pink princess popcorn, made from popcorn covered in melted candy melts and sprinkled with hundreds and thousands and then presented in plastic popcorn cones in a wire basket.
- Banner – Personalised Happy Birthday Princess Sydney banner on the edge of the table.
- Easels – To go outside the hall which Jack used chalk pens to decorate.
In terms of party bags, I started sourcing things back in October (the party was last week!), so was able to look for things on ebay from China that were really cheap but took forever to arrive, but because I had the time, that didn’t matter at all.
I managed to track down some fabric princess bags and filled it with the following:
- Princess Socks
- Mini Princess Book
- Princess Bracelet and Ring
- Mini Plastic Princess
Then every child had a jar of baby food sweets, a popcorn cone, a cake and a balloon wand.
I managed to find a princess stamp set from ebay for a few pounds and made the labels with each name on it and stamped various princess pictures on the outside.
We did a trial run of the display table a week or so before the party so I knew where everything would go, and then took photos so when we arrived at the hall, I would be able to get things set up quickly.
On the day before the party, it was full on. We made the cupcakes, biscuits and fruit wands. I had made the cupcakes a few times before, but had never made biscuits and was really pleased how they turned out. Learning how to do royal icing with youtube videos was fun!
The day of the party we were up at 6am making heart shaped and crown shaped sandwiches and getting everything into the car.
My sister and my mum came to help and my mum looked after the girls whilst my sister, Jack and I got to the hall. We got there a few hours before to get everything set up.
Ellie arrived with the tables and when the hall was done, I was so pleased with how it all looked.
I had also managed to find small plastic Frozen cups online and each child used their own during the party and I marked them with a sharpie with their name so they could take them home.
The party was a brilliant success. Sydney really had a magical time and to see her face when Elsa and Anna came through the door was amazing. The girls did such a good job with the children and did party games and singing and princess lessons with them.
The children were so well behaved during the lunch and loved princess themed food. I felt so relieved and it was so lovely to see how happy they all looked, it definitely made all the effort worth it.
I am not sure how readily I will do a party next year as it was a lot of work and was so tiring, but feel I will have to do at least a 4th party for Morgan (hopefully she will be into princesses too at that age and I can use the same things and ideas!).
For now though, I am so pleased that Sydney had a brilliant birthday, and that is all over for another year!
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