Invited
Invited
A children's 4th birthday party with a valentines theme and a sweet table at the Great Escape
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Make
A children's 4th birthday party with a valentines theme and a sweet table at the Great Escape
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Craft
A children's 4th birthday party with a valentines theme and a sweet table at the Great Escape
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Fun
A children's 4th birthday party with a valentines theme and a sweet table at the Great Escape
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Happy
A children's 4th birthday party with a valentines theme and a sweet table at the Great Escape
Great Escape
Great Escape
A children's 4th birthday party with a valentines theme and a sweet table at the Great Escape
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Love
A children's 4th birthday party with a valentines theme and a sweet table at the Great Escape
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Sweet Table
A children's 4th birthday party with a valentines theme and a sweet table at the Great Escape
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Cake
A children's 4th birthday party with a valentines theme and a sweet table at the Great Escape
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Swing
A children's 4th birthday party with a valentines theme and a sweet table at the Great Escape
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Be Mine
A children's 4th birthday party with a valentines theme and a sweet table at the Great Escape
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A Themed Birthday?

Author: Charlotte O'Shea

It may surprise you to know that I am the world’s most useless crafter. I have zero patience for a start. I am the founder of Rock My Wedding which showcases the most amazing DIY creations known to man yet the only projects incorporated in my own big day were those that Adam made (!)

Styling yes, designing yes, actually making anything? erm no, I wouldn’t dare volunteer, my skills extend to a very basic knowledge of flower arranging and how to sew a button onto fabric. I was never going to be awarded a Blue Peter badge.

Mabel turns one next month (I know, I can’t quite believe it…) and I want to do something special. And dare I say…home made? I would love to hear your ideas and what you folks have organised for your little’s birthday celebrations, and any easy (!) pretty bits and bobs I may be able to have a bash at creating myself. In the meantime I’m sharing (and getting inspired!) by photographer Antonina Mamzenko’s Valentine’s themed affair for Sidney’s 4th birthday party at The Green Escape. Enjoy!

Styling

Antonia Mamzenko: We wanted to create a Valentine’s themed birthday party that would not be based on the explosion of red and pink hearts. So instead we opted for greens and purples, using watercolour hearts and a bold sketchy font which suited the craft element of the party and it’s location.

Location

Any mum would know that finding a great location for your child’s birthday party isn’t easy, especially if you want it to have both indoor and outdoor areas. We were so happy when we found The Green Escape – a glamping site set in six acres of beautiful National Trust woodland, tucked away in a secret spot in Surrey Hills. Not only it had a large (and very warm) communal building, perfect for a party of any kind, but there are also so much for children to explore outside!

Invitations

We borrowed the idea for the egg carton invitations from A Joyful Riot but modified it to create an unusual invite which could double up as a crafts supply box. We filled the boxes with various bits and pieces including heart and flower stickers, buttons, pompoms and letters from Baker Ross and Hobbycraft to allow children to create their own Valentine’s Day cards and hanging heart decorations. It was a great success, and the children were fully immersed in the crafts activity for a very, very long time!

Sweets Table

To compliment the picturesque environment we wanted to create an informal sweet table. It was important to use elements from our surroundings so we incorporated tree stumps we found on site to create an interesting and small sweetie area.

The sweets we chose were favourites amongst children including popcorn, jelly beans, bon bons, swizzle sticks and alphabet sweets! We wanted to create something bright and colourful using some of the colour theme including purple, green, yellow and blue. The iced cupcakes were decorated with jelly beans and sprinkles all in the shape of a heart! And the main birthday cake was Sidney’s favourite – red velvet!

{Contributors}

Photography Antonina Mamzenko | Styling and Sweets Table The Sweet Hostness |
Venue The Green Escape

Author
Purveyor of short shorts. Make-up junkie. Hopes to grow old disgracefully.
Follow Charlotte on instagram @charlotte.oshea
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24 thoughts on “A Themed Birthday?

  1. for David’s christening we created a “time capsule” so all the guests had to fill in a questionnaire with their predictions about his future! so how tall will he be, what will be his fave subject at school, that sort of thing. we also got people to guess tbe price of a pint of milk and who the monarch would be. it was really fun and will be great opening them on his 21st.

    1. That’s an amazing idea!! My little boy is turning one at the end of this month and I’m totally stealing this!! Thank you! Xx

  2. Oh, Charlotte, I can so sympathize with the sentiment (of being the world’s most useless crafter)! Most of the creatives I know are also pretty nifty crafters, but I always feel like like while I can certainly can appreciate the beauty/cuteness of something hand-made, I can never really MAKE something myself. So we got the children crafting and creating instead, lol!

    1. I am completely fingers and thumbs when it comes to making things and if it doesn’t look good in the first attempt I usually give up….something I hope not to encourage Mabel to do! I’m hoping she will be much more talented than me 🙂 x

  3. I’m a horrific crafter too, so you definitely have my sympathy! Although I’m a long way off from organising parties for little ones, I do have fond memories of my parties as a child and I’m sure my parents felt the same way when it comes to crafting. There was one birthday cake that collapsed in on itself before it even got to the table – it was a Thomas the Tank Engine cake and the weight of sponge and icing was just too much for the chocolate finger train track…!

    On a more positive note, the one birthday where my dad was in charge of the party bags was pretty awesome – each bag was tied to a piece of wool, with a name at the end. You had to follow your string to find your party bag and it resulted in about 10 6 year olds getting completely tangled as they tried to deconstruct the web of string in the laundry basket I remember!

  4. Paper pom poms are a really easy DIY (or you can buy them ready folded and just needing to be fluffed up) and mixed with honeycomb balls make for really pretty, non-themed decorations. I’ve seen some awesome balloons with confetti inside and confetti strings recently too – try notonthehighstreet and itspartyparty on etsy. Can you tell I’m also planning a first birthday party at the moment?!

  5. Oooh I LOVE a themed party! (and also LOVE that idea and you can add me to this list of stealers Kathryn!) I’m surrounded by notebooks most evenings now with a first, and eleventh and a ninth bithday party to plan this year. The key to crafting I think is to start early …and if you don’t love it then don’t put yourself through it! I’m doing a very simple theme for Niemas first birthday – Though my eldest would love us to create her an under sea mermaid cavern I’m sure since this party will mainly be family friends and a few 11-16 month olds none of them will particularly want to dress as fish or mermaids?! (actually one of my best friends has a fab mermaid costume come to think of it!) But we will save that for another year and I’ve just ordered a lot of sparkes and pretty balloons and glittery washi tape to make cake bunting.
    If you ever need any ideas I have a Wizard of Oz, Mad Hatters Tea Party, Lego ‘Everything is Awesome’ Party, Woodland Fairy, Lion&Ballerinas (they chose that combo), Princess and Pirate, Garden, Monsters, Circus, Camping, Zoo and Vintage tea Party under my belt so far and filling many notebooks and currenly working on Minecraft and some sort of ‘Neon Yearbook’ party (??)
    I think my love of making party bags may just beat my love of Christmas. I once got so excited at the idea of making hot air balloons with gifts in the baskets for party bags that I made them in October for my daughters birthday at the end of the following June!! 16 ribbony rainbow coloured huge lampshades had to sit in the corner of the lounge for 9 whole months. My husband is an incredibly patient man – and regularly has to make things I comission out of MDF, chicken wire and garden cane!

    1. Amanda you are my party theme hero!

      I would love to create a mermaid do of some sort?! maybe when Mabel’s a bit older and can appreciate it.

      The lamp shades sound amazing…..*sigh* maybe I will have to get crafty after all x

  6. I am completely gormless when it comes to crafting, but not quite as bad as my friend who managed to superglue her tongue to her teeth while making an elaborate headpiece for a night out…?! So if you’ve not managed to main yourself with adhesive I think you’re probably ok Charlotte!

    1. Lollololol Now that’s a new one on me!

      I super-glued my fingers together before, now I just avoid any type of adhesive. Also “gormless” is so under used as a word x

  7. The best childhood party I remember was a pizza decorating party. Admittedly probably not ideal for a bunch of 1 year olds but it was AMAZING. Mum just bought a load of child-size plain bases with tomato and cheese on and each child made their own with dishes and dishes of toppings. Then you don’t have to worry about entertaining them or food! Way better than a curled up sandwich! I’m looking forward to doing kids parties in the future – crafty or not!

  8. This would have been my ideal party when I was a nipper. A box of pompoms and a tube of glitter would have kept me entertained for hours!
    I was always partial to a game of musical chairs too.

  9. We had a ‘teddy bears picnic’ theme for my oldests 1st bday. Everyone brought their fav teddy, loads of bright blankets, poms and bunting. Bought lots of baskets to display the food (teddy bear crisps and teddy bear gingerbread amongst lots of other goodies!) and red gingham fabric to line baskets / lay on tables etc. party bags were just the £1 ikea teddy for each bubba. She is 4 (how did that happen) this summer and I’m in the process of trying to pursued her that she doesnt want a Frozen party! Good luck!

    1. Oh, a teddy bear picnic sounds so much fun! It’s not easy to find a theme for the 1st birthday party that the little one could actually enjoy, and this sounds like a great idea Elizabeth!

  10. I created a fairly simply Memory Board with a few bits & pieces that summed up my Daughters 1st Year; Cards, Birth Announcement, Booties, Headband etc; Here’s a link to a pic of it on my Instagram feed. http://instagram.com/p/thpj4_SVsH/?modal=true

    I was also lucky enough to rope in a talented friend to help me create this floral monogram with real flowers & oasis http://instagram.com/p/thpA4xyVrf/?modal=true

    My theme was botanical, based around these gorgeous Rifle & Co Botanical Garland tiles that I could create numerous signs out of
    http://www.amazon.co.uk/Botanicals-Garlands-Rifle-Paper-Co/dp/1452109613
    http://instagram.com/p/thpZUjyVr6/?modal=true

    I LOVED styling my daughters 1st birthday party, you’ll have fun & I bet you find your creative & crafting flair xxxx

  11. I’m pretty good at crafts and I have lots of babies due in the family this year so I am looking up lots of lovely things to make – the beautiful Sarah was born three weeks ago and their will be another four babbas by June! So I have my work cut out. My big tip is to get a glue gun. Hobbycraft do them for about £10 but I found mine in Aldi for only £5, and it takes all the hassle out of sticking and sewing. My welcome to the world present for Sarah was amazingly easy – Charlotte even you could manage it – I cut a big ‘S’ out of felt and used my glue gun to stick it on to patterned material, and framed it in a box frame – simple but really effective.

    I love a themed party and think a teddy bears picnic is cute for toddlers and how could the adults attending not love a touch of vintage tea party incorporated into it.

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