mad hatter tea party

March 11, 2012 § 5 Comments

With the girls’ birthdays exactly six months apart, I am almost always in party planning mode. There’s usually a month or two lull when I’m happily basking in the post-party glow of our latest soiree, but then the itch comes, and once again I excitedly start gearing up. As our next party’s planning begins, a luau for Sophie’s 8th birthday, I can’t help but remember her 7th: a lovely Mad Hatter tea party.

The girls had been in an Alice In Wonderland phase for a while, loving the book and the movies, so an Alice-themed party seemed perfect. The invitation was a fun project. And inspiration struck when I got the idea of designing one crazy-long table in the backyard for all the children to sit together for the tea party; plywood on boxes, covered with pretty Land of Nod polka-dot sheets as a tablecloth, worked perfectly to make cozy seating for 18! I love industrial elements and decided to use galvanized metal buckets and mason jars as containers, brown craft paper and office supply tags. We had so much fun making “Eat Me,” “Drink Me,” “Enjoy Me,” and “Play Me” labels to attach to everything. I picked up lots of inexpensive mismatched tea cups – one for each guest – which made great party favors.

When the children arrived, we had a table set up to make your own Mad Hatter fascinator (I’d been inspired by the Royal Wedding), quite a hit. In the backyard, kids could play croquet, go on a key-finding treasure hunt or take part in “Painting the Roses Red” at an art table. Everyone had so much fun – I loved watching the little ones practicing raising their pinky fingers and giggling their way through our fancy tea party. It was a magical day for my special Alice.

party planning

June 27, 2011 § 2 Comments

I’ve been a busy bee putting the final touches on my little one’s 7th birthday party. This year, it’s an Alice in Wonderland theme, which¬†was her choosing but something I can definitely get excited about. I absolutely love planning my girls’ birthday parties. It lets me put together my love for crafting, entertaining and focusing on the little things that make my life so full.

My favorite part is the invitation and the party favors. Now I don’t expect anything fancy from other parties we go to, but with ours I just love to push myself and dive into the little details. I like to think that my girls can feel my love in each little ribbon and flourish. I plan everything out, enjoying the process of coming up with fantastic ideas and tying everything back to the theme. I have saved all the party invitations over the years, and I want to create a little scrapbook for each girl as a sort-of party time capsule so they can look back and know that each year we celebrated their birth with a lot of love and excitement.

For the invitation this time, I found perfect Mad Hatter Tea Party rubber stamps from TJ Designs combined with a few industrial touches like brown paper tags and masking tape. Beautiful aqua papers from My Mind’s Eye’s Stella and Rose Collection tied in perfectly. On the back I added a little pocket and let my little one help in deciding what we should include. We ended up with a stamped key, a playing card and a Mad Hatter tag that she colored herself. She has her own strong opinions, and I like to make sure I include all her great ideas.

Last year, her party was a Wizard of Oz theme, but not just Wizard of Oz; she was very specific that it should be a Wizard of Oz play party. All of her friends would come and they would act out a play of the Wizard of Oz using the movie soundtrack as their guide. So for weeks we worked to build a stage and put together costumes. I planned all the details. There were tickets, coloring book programs and popcorn for the show. She practiced her play a lot and obviously had a vision, but we weren’t sure how it would come out or if she would actually even do it. On the day of the party, when my shy little birthday girl stood up on that make-shift stage and belted out “Somewhere Over the Rainbow” loud and clear to our family and friends just like she’d practiced, it was amazing. She said it was better than she’d even dreamed of. I know it was definitely better than anything I could have planned!

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