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Step Right Up! It’s a circus birthday party! The last time I did a circus party, it was for my oldest son’s 1st birthday back in 2009. Circus parties are always a popular theme for 1st birthdays and it is really a great theme for birthday parties of any age! This one was for two brothers who were turning 4 and 1.
I made this cute welcome wreath out of tickets from Oriental Trading and cute printables from Chickabug. All it takes is a little hot glue and an hour.
The birthday boys have a beautiful house with a great outdoor entertaining area, which was perfect for setting up the sweets buffet. As soon as you turned the corner into their back yard, this was the first thing you saw.
Since both boys have names that begin with a T (and dad too!), I really played that up in the decor. I wanted a BIG focal point! I made this giant marquee circus letter from a cardboard science fair backdrop from Hobby Lobby. Then, I lined it with shiny red poster board. The string lights were from the dorm room section of Target. There are tons of DIY directions for these letters all over Pinterest.
The giant ticket booth is from my friends at Birthday Express. It’s SO easy to put together and it’s the perfect photo booth prop, and also a perfect plaything for the kids at the party!
I made this banner for the front of the table with my Silhouette. I used glitter cardstock on top of shiny metallic cardstock. I love how it turned out!
For the circus treats, I went traditional! Bubble gum, candy apples, sugar cookies, and cotton candy of course!
The cotton candy lollipops were a great way for the kids to be able to eat cotton candy in a less-messy way. My favorite cotton candy vendor, Dolly’s Cotton Candy customized these for me. Kids of all ages love cotton candy!
I displayed them in a wooden crate that I painted blue. On the front, I dressed it up with cute printables from Chickabug and some metallic pom poms.
These glittered candy apples are from my friend Autumn at Autumn Lynn’s Chocolate Sins. I got a funny phone call later in the party, asking if they were edible! They are almost too pretty to eat!
Two birthday boys mean TWO cakes! I did a large one for the guests and then, a smash cake for baby Taylor. Isn’t this cake by Mad Lily Cakery just beautiful? It’s the quintessential circus cake! I love what she did with the bunting. I wanted to display the cake on a really high level, so I put it on top of a hat box covered with metallic posterboard and a yellow bucket that I embellished with vinyl to make it look like an elephant trainer’s stool. Aren’t these circus plates from Birthday Express so cute? Taylor’s smash cake was displayed on a hat box that I dressed up with glitter cardstock and tickets. I cut these T’s on my Silhouette and added them to the Whirly Pops to personalize them for the boys.
The circus cookies were done by the fabulous Whimsy Cookie Co. I can’t decide which ones I like the best! They are all so stinking cute!
For the favors, TJ and Taylor’s mom really wanted to do Goldfish in a Bag soap.
I had never done them before, but I knew it couldn’t be too hard! I used some Oriental Trading goodies, including plastic fish, cellophane bags, and red personalized ribbon to make them really adorable!
I displayed them all under this adorable tabletop tent from Oriental Trading. It was the perfect way to tie them all up like a carnival games booth! I used the tickets from Oriental Trading to frame these adorable printables from Chickabug.
We had a couple of action stations, catered by Simply Delicious Caterings. They did live, on the spot, funnel cakes and corn dogs! Hello, delicious!
I loved the decor that Trisha and her crew brought for decor! LIVE GOLDFISH! What kid wouldn’t love this?? This banner from Birthday Express was the perfect touch to hang from the back of the house! When I saw this beautiful house, I knew I wanted to add a balloon arch over the pool! Out past the pool, we used the basketball court to add some guest seating. The tables were supposed to be in the yard, but it rained like crazy the day before! Thank goodness for basketball courts!
For centerpieces, I used the printables, some glitter cardstock, and some more tickets to make a cute statement piece. I used these ADORABLE circus tent pinatas from Birthday Express for centerpieces on two of the tables.
There was also a petting zoo, pony ride and train ride! Lorri and crew at Happy Times Farm kept the kids happy with a menagerie of adorable animals! That’s my husband holding this sweet bunny. He’s an animal freak–he would have stayed all day!
My favorite party entertainment, the tremendously talented Amy from Fairys and Frogs Face Painting, really kept the kids happy! Let’s just say that there were A LOT of Elsas!
Ready to get dirty?
My latest party for my littlest guy is based upon his love of being outside with his Daddy 24/7.
He particularly loves digging! So, when I was brainstorming ideas for his birthday, I knew I wanted to do a party with an outdoor theme.
He just happened to be turning three, so Dirty Third-y it was!
I always like to start my parties with a welcome to the guests. That usually takes the form of some sort of door hanging. Even though all my guests know where we live, when you have guests who have never been to your home before, it’s nice to indicate that this door leads to the party!
I made this wreath by dismantling the one from his Twolladega party last year and adding some gummy worms and a cute little bucket cutout from my Silhouette.
And, for my boys’ parties, I always have a giant stair hanging!
This time I made a giant 3 out of a cardboard folding science fair backdrop and added some gummy worms that I painted on cardboard and cut out.
For the invitation, of COURSE I had my favorite graphics people, Piggy Bank Parties, come up with something just for Lachlan!
I am so lucky to be one of the few people whom they will custom design for. We are always on the same wavelength and when I toss them a crazy party idea, they always knock it out of the park with the printables!
And guess what? They’ve already listed the entire collection in their Etsy shop!
For the backdrop, I wanted to have his name outlined in gummy worms, so I bought a huge bag of bulk gummy worms (or “yummy” worms as he calls them) and glued them to wooden letters from +Hobby Lobby . I stuck them to a large piece of brown corrugated cardboard which I cut into the shape of a big mud splatter.
I found these cute shovels in the dollar spot at Target and I knew I wanted to have them hanging from the front of the table.
The brilliant Purple Pug made him this fabulous table runner with his name in glitter, of course! She has made my boys something for pretty much every one of their birthdays and I have a small collection of her awesomeness in each of their rooms!
I used this worm sculpture that was left over from his first “Lach Ness Monster” party for added table cuteness. He had been hanging around in our back yard for two years and I realized that he HAD to be included in this party and I painted his middle section red.
Lach LOVES the oreos from Maria at Love and Sugar Kisses. So, I knew I had to get order some for him.
Maria absolutely killed it with these.
When I saw that she had made the bucket 3D, I might have squealed aloud.
Lach’s favorites were the ones with the little worms.
Here is another view of the cute printables! My sister whipped up this cute little banner for the crate using some of the printables from Piggy Bank Parties.
My husband’s favorite dessert is dirt cake. And what kid doesn’t like that?
I got these cute little green metal platters from +Michaels Stores this summer and used a green stand from +Hobby Lobby to make my own two tier stand.
Inside, I displayed miniature individual dirt cakes in clear cups.
I was a slave driver and made my mom and sister tape the bamboo spoons onto the cups with cute orange and green washi.
And, of course, there was a chocolate fountain.
I served it with fruit and marshmallows, and even some more gummy worms for the sweet-tooth inclined. The kids loved it!
I knew I wanted to do a chocolate cake that looked like a dirt cake, but wasn’t.
So, I sent Mad Lily Cakery a picture of what I was thinking.
How cute is this cake? And let me tell you, it was DELICIOUS.
I wish I had a piece right now! It’s pretty much the perfect cake for boys.
My friends at +Birthday Express sent me some awesome polka dot party supplies for this party and I blew up a bunch of balloons and put them all in my living room. The kids loved it. Simple pleasures.
And yes, my kids are watching their obsession, Little Einsteins.
For the savory food, we kept it simple, Little Caesars pizza and homemade pasta salad.
Good for adults and kids!
I made this banner for my bar with my Silhouette.
I displayed the cute party supplies from Birthday Express on my bar, along with pictures of Lach on every birthday.
We almost always ask for charity donations in lieu of gifts for our kids’ birthdays. They already get enough stuff from their aunts, uncles, and grandparents. Our kids have every toy that they could ever need and so many children don’t. This year, on both their birthdays we asked for donations to The Confetti Foundation.
We ask our guests to bring monetary donations to help other children in the hospital have birthday parties too. It teaches our kids to be charitable and it serves a need. Win-win!
For the favors, I knew I wanted to do a personalized gift.
Target had these cute kid-sized sand pails all summer in their dollar spot. I snapped so many of them up!
So, how great is this banner? Worms? Brilliant.
I found the best mud splatter graphic on the Silhouette store and cut the kids’ names out of the design in brown vinyl.
This is what a happy boy looks like.
So, here’s the story of this candle. My mother-in-law saw someone get one of these and she loved it and picked one up for each of her little grandkids.
It is like a serious firework and it then rotates and sings Happy Birthday! It’s a crowd-pleaser for sure!
You can get one here:
I love the combination of mint and gold, especially for baby showers because it is so versatile and gender-neutral.
This particular shower was actually a Sip and See! If you aren’t Southern, or have no idea what a Sip and See is, it is a party after the baby is born, for all your friends and relatives to meet the baby. They have become really popular lately, especially in the case of second, third, or more babies.
When Christina, my client, sent me some inspiration pictures of what she was thinking, I was so excited to do this party! I LOVE antiquing and buying unique pieces for events. So, I knew that I could make this really beautiful and vintage.
I started with contacting my friend Gretchen at Three Little Monkeys Studios. She has a great style and I knew she could create a vintage, yet simplistic invitation.
I always like to do some sort of welcome for guests at the front door. I made this wreath with a simple straw wreath form, burlap and lace ribbon, some scrapbook embellishments and some shapes from my Silhouette.
I knew I wanted to use vintage windows and I was so pumped to find two different ones in varying shades of mint! Score! The large railing is actually a large piece of a baby crib that I found at the antique mall. I love the texture it brings to the table.
The cake stands are a mixture of my collection and two beautiful mint green Nicole Miller stands that I found at HomeGoods I might have squealed out loud when I found them.
Since this was a brunch, we had tons of cute brunch foods! The Eggo dipping sticks are a super easy way to do waffle shots! These absolutely stunning mint and gold doughnuts are from my friend Autumn at Autumn Lynn’s Chocolate Sins. I think that they were so beautiful that people were afraid to eat them!
The large A was purchased at Hobby Lobby. It’s actually made from canvas, so I painted it in an ombre treatment. The little anchor is from Hobby Lobby too. If you notice, there are anchors sprinkled into the design because they are meaningful to baby’s parents. I made this vintage window into a birth announcement keepsake for the baby. I used my Silhouette to cut the baby’s birth date stats and applied it directly to the window. I hope that this makes a beautiful addition to his room!
Ok, let’s talk about how beautiful these cupcakes are. Mad Lily Cakery made the cupcakes for me and Maria at Love and Sugar Kisses did the absolutely stunning toppers. I originally planned to do a cupcake wrapper on these, but when I started applying them, I thought they took away from the beautiful toppers!
I got the vintage mint hankies at the antique mall too. I love how they look on the cake stands.
The fabulous cookies were made by my girls at Whimsy Cookie Co. I love the treatment they did on the mason jars to make them look like they are wrapped in burlap!
All party food doesn’t have to be complicated. These mini-cinnamon rolls are prepackaged from Kroger and they are delicious! For the favors, we did bags of powdered donuts. Gretchen made these toppers to match the invitation and they say “Donut be a stranger!” I found this vintage drawer and painted the inside of it mint to hold the donuts.
The beautiful fabric banner on the front of the table was made by Candace at LillyPaul Designs. I love the little textured pieces that she threw in. I have worked with her three times now and she does beautiful work! Instead of gifts, the parents asked for guests to bring books for the baby’s library.
I set up another food station in the dining room for the savory food selections, which included chicken salad croissants, a yogurt and fruit trifle, a cheese display, and a biscuit bar.
This chalkboard was an ugly painting that I painted over with chalkboard paint. A little chalk pen and some free-handing and it’s the perfect display for the biscuit bar menu.
Birthday Express sent me these awesome silver-look plastic utensils. This is a great option when you want something a little nicer-looking, with the ease of plastic utensils!
And what’s a brunch without drinks?
Earlier this year, when I got an advance peek at some of the new Birthday Express party collections, I immediately fell in love with this sweet little Show Pony collection. There are tons of pony themed parties out there in party-land, but I had never seen one in this color scheme. I love that it’s blue, which means you can use it for a boy, or a girl, in combination with the white, soft cream, tan and brown.
When I started planning this event, I knew right away where it should be! Some of our family friends own a beautiful ranch called Bark N Bray Ranch outside of Memphis. They breed the most beautiful Golden Retrievers and donkeys, which they train for hospital therapy.Their home is just beautiful and was the perfect location for this pony party!
I started the table design with a simple piece of raw burlap. I always keep burlap in my party stash because it comes in handy at a variety of events. Then, I asked my friend Shauna at Cupcake with Character if she would make me some table runners. She made me these three gorgeous runners for the front of the table. All I did was add some polka dot burlap and blue ribbon to the front with a little bit of fusible hem tape. I love the way they give the front of the table some visual interest!
I also made a little banner for the birthday girl, using my Silhouette and some simple blue and cream/tan striped scrapbook paper. How pretty are these party supplies? They were custom designed by Birthday Express and exclusive to their website! So, you can only get them there! One of my favorite details is the blue ribbon design of the dinner plate. I displayed them in a cute picket fence planter that I found at the antique mall.
I had a beautiful array of birthday sweets for this party, beginning with these beautiful cake pops from Bella’s Bakery and Bowtique. Nicole added these beautiful tiny embellishments of riding hats, ribbons, and horseshoes to the pops. The horseshoes even looked metallic!
An easy treat for any farm themed party is these cute hay bales. They really could not be any easier to make! All you do is buy a frozen pound cake, cut into rectangles (preferably while still frozen), dip into melted white chocolate, and then roll in toasted coconut! Delicious and easy!
If you notice, there are four beautiful hand-made prize ribbons decorating the party table. These were crafted by Shawna Brockmeier Styled Events. They were just gorgeously created and even had pins on the back to secure them to anything you like.
These beautiful glittered treat toppers were created by +Made by a Princess Parties in Style. I joked with Kylie that I have no idea how she gets her Silhouette to cut glitter cardstock so well because I am such an amateur on mine. But hers were perfect! She even did these awesome clear acrylic sticks for them, so it appears that they are floating! Love!
I worked with a new cookie vendor for this party, Creating Awesomenessity! Katherine is based here in Memphis, so I always love supporting my local girls! She made the most gorgeous ribbon and horseshoe cookies for me! They really were perfect and I love the metallic shimmer on the horseshoes!
The best part of the Show Pony collection is these 3D horses! Am I right? They are a snap to put together and they come in this tan or brown! We had fun putting them up next to the real horses, who were very curious about this little mini-horse! There is also a fencing piece that is also made from cardboard. You can see it at the front of the table. They are really perfect for a photo op with the kids!
There are two favor boxes in this collection too and I couldn’t decide which one I liked more, so I used both! Nothing makes a table like a mason jar full of flowers! And, of course, a cute ribbon embellishment!
For the backdrop of the party, I used one of the placemats from the collection and added some burlap ribbon to the back with hot glue. Then, I added some ribbons to the bottom to give it that prize ribbon look. I hung it along with some simple rosettes embellished with stickers and die cuts from my +sizzix
So, Frozen is the best movie ever, right? Full disclosure: When Evite.com contacted me about styling a Frozen party for them, it was the week before the movie came out on DVD and I still hadn’t seen it. I have little boys (6 and 2), who were not interested in seeing it in the theaters, and I despite my love for all things Disney Princess, I couldn’t see myself going to the theater alone! So, of course, I bought it the first day it was out on DVD. And now my little guys love it! My 2 year old frequently asks for “Anna? Elsa?” I was really inspired by the beautiful colors in this movie. It’s really so vibrant and saturated! All the party goods were sent to me from my Birthday Express friends and one of the best parts of the collection is the balloons. Wait until you see how gorgeous they are! They were a huge inspiration in for the color palette!
Every party needs a beautiful way to welcome guests! Stacy at She’s Kinda Crafty whipped up this gorgeous wreath for me, even incorporating some sparkly silver ribbon to bring in the ice aspect. I added the white snowflake to reinforce the theme. Isn’t it so happy and vibrant?
For the main table, I knew I wanted to create the look of the frozen forest that Anna and Kristoph travel through when they are looking for Elsa. I accomplished this by having my husband raid our neighborhood on trash day! He picked up these cuttings from our neighbor’s crepe myrtle tree. I painted them high gloss white and then added some turquoise glitter to them for sparkle. I stood them up using floral foam with lots of weights on top! The backdrop is sparkly tulle that I found at Joann. My wall color is actually that soft grey, which worked really well with the glittered tulle.
The tablecloth and the “snow” is fabric batting that I had leftover from another project. I used my Sizzix die cut machine to make these gorgeous purple snowflakes to go into the gumball cups. I got those little clear acrylic cups at Hobby Lobby a few years ago. I displayed them on stands that I made from acrylic boxes and mirrors. I used rhinestone ribbon to wrap the acrylic boxes.
These beautiful chocolate covered Oreos are from my friend Janet at Sweet Temptations. I have worked with her tons of times, but these might be my favorite! I wanted the cupcake and cake stand to evoke Elsa’s Ice castle. So, I built this stand out of several pieces of acrylic cake supports from my local cake store. This is a project anyone can do! It can even be lit with LED lights if you want to get that “glowing” look of Elsa’s castle.
The beautiful cupcake toppers are from Brittany at Edible Details. She was inspired by the plates from the Frozen party collection, which have tiny floral details like Anna and Elsa’s coronation dresses. Aren’t they pretty? So delicate! I got those white laser cut wrappers at Michael’s Stores in the dollar bin. Brittany also did a beautiful snowflake design.
For an extra snowy feel, I used white and blue confetti from Hobby Lobby to sprinkle around the base of the cake stands. These adorable Elsa and Anna peg dolls are from my party soul sister, Jenny at Craft that Party. I love them so much!! Here is a look at the beautiful plates. So vibrant and fun!
What would a Frozen party be without snowballs? These powdered donut holes are just the cutest little one-bite snack for kids. I displayed them on this acrylic stand that I got at Hobby Lobby a while back. I wrapped the stems of the forks in the rhinestone ribbon. Don’t you love the color palette of these napkins?
Another fun food for kids that is really “snowy” is cotton candy! I got this cotton candy and these cute goblets at Birthday Express and displayed them with these beautiful fondant snowflakes by Brittany. Speaking of Brittany, this fondant topper is just the piece d’resistance! I cannot believe that anyone is talented enough to make something this detailed out of fondant. I mean….. I wanted to put it in a glass box and preserve it. It’s a work of art! The cake was a simple two layer that I made myself. I iced it with a turquoise icing and then rolled it in blue sparkly sugar. Reminds me to never do that again! What a mess! But, the after effect is pretty great! I made this banner for the backdrop using glittered card-stock and some simple wooden letters. I spray painted them white and then while they were sticky, I poured iridescent confetti on them to make them look icy. Then, I topped the banner with this cute crown shape from my Sizzix and added some rosettes to the sides.
My friend Candace at LillyPaul Designs made this gorgeous fabric banner for the front of the table. It’s a little girl’s dream; pink, purple, turquoise, and sparkle! I want to hang it in my office and stare at it all the time! It was the perfect pop of color for the front of the table.
For the favor table, I wanted to create an icy mountain to display the favors. I did this by building some hat boxes on top of each other and covering them with fabric and batting. I embellished these lollipops from Birthday Express with some rhinestone ribbon and some pretty Sizzix die cut shapes. It really takes them up a notch. If you don’t have a die cut machine, you can always find things like this in the scrapbook section of your local craft store!
I displayed them in a simple glass container filled with styrofoam for support, covered with batting. No Frozen party would be complete without Rock candy, right? The backdrop was created with these glittered rosettes that I made. I love how bright and happy they are! The favor box extraordinaire couple of Do and J at Piggy Bank Parties really killed it with these gorgeous snowflake boxes. The colors are SO beautiful and matched my palette perfectly! These are so easy to make and I predict that they will be selling a lot of these in the near future. I am in love with these balloons. These are the inspiration for the entire party. GORGEOUS.
For the front of the table, I used these Frozen stickers to make a banner. Inside the boxes were these lovely purple and blue snowflake cookies from Kima’s Konfections. They were the perfect size and shape for this box!
Hope you enjoyed my Frozen party! I know we will be seeing all kinds of interpretations of this theme in the coming year! Every single little girl is probably going to want this theme!