When I asked our daughter what kind of party she wanted, she excitedly said, "PRINCESS!" I tried to convince her to choose another theme; I wasn't very convincing. So, I put aside my wants and agreed to plan a princess party. I have to admit, I. drug. my. feet. I didn't want Cinderella plastered everywhere. So, after some searching and discussion with mommy friends, I had a plan: light pink, gray, and white. Very classy.
The backdrop: I began with the little frames, painted them, and added scrapbook paper, and our daughter's name (one letter per frame). Then, I added the Wild Sorbet frame with a chalkboard insert. After some inspiration from Kerri at http://www.bigklittlek.com/, I sewed crepe paper together to make a crinkled backdrop. Although very easy, sewing the crepe paper does take some time ;) My Cricut helped to create the scrapbook paper triangle banner. The banner pulls in all the colors and designs. I loved the triangle banners so much, I had more triangles than I knew what to do with! Oh, well, better to have too much, than not enough!
The table: What's a birthday party without balloons? Not a birthday party. So, I HAD to add some balloons. But not just any balloons on a skinny string, classy balloons in gray and pink with tulle as the "string"; very princess-y and classy at the same time. Now, this was coming together. The balloons on either side of the table flank the backdrop perfectly and "ground" the table. What to put on the table? What's that, chevron?! Of course! I borrowed this fabulous chevron table cloth from my friend (and pretty awesome neighbor) Kerri. Then, I began to "build" the table...the cake stands to anchor the balloons, the stands for the snack mix balance out the cake stand and cake and the white (you can never go wrong with white platters) platters to serve the food. The center of the table features "I am 4" cookies on a stick in a DIY holder (the secret...this is an upside down floating shelf meets paint and my husband's drill). I made the table runners with the same fabric as I made her dress for the picture for the invitation. The table runners were super simple! I even backed them with a yellow chevron for use for another party. I just love it when you can get double use out of something!
The food: A local, family friend made the cake. I (ah, um, with a little help from family) made everything else. The "I am 4 cookies" are Oreos dipped in white chocolate. The fruit kabobs were so yummy...everything is better on a stick! With four-year-olds, you can't go wrong with pb&j sandwiches in a heart shape or with a snack mix featuring pretzels, raisins, cheddar bunnies, and chocolate chips. The crown cookies were made using a crown cookie cutter and a little bit of trial and error, on my part, to create a pretty crown with icing and edible pearls. The pink punch included sorbet and Sprite...I just LOVE punch!
The printables: Kerri did a GREAT job taking the birthday girl's picture and creating a classy invitation. She created the food signs and the "4" circles to go on the cups with washi tape. Kerri also created the cover of the autograph books and the name tags for the kids' bags. I had a bag for each guest so they would have a place to put all their crafts. Otherwise, I could just see a meltdown of "this is mine", "no, that's mine" happening in the middle of the party. (What can I say, I'm a kindergarten teacher and those are the things I plan to avoid ;) Nevertheless, I would highly recommend Kerri for ANY printable need!
The activities: I organized three activities for the kids to do at the beginning of the party. 1st) Pick up an autograph book and have their picture taken with Cinderella, Snow White and Prince Charming. 2nd) The girls decorated princess crowns and the boys decorated king crowns. The foam crowns came with little foam self-adhesive decorations. I divided the pieces out so there would be enough at each table for the kids to share. 3rd) The girls made fancy shmancy princess bracelets with beads and pipe cleaners while the boys decorated shields of amour made from posterboard and crayons. The kids had a great time assembling their crafts and being creative!
The special guests: This is where I reminisced about our Disney trip last March (oh, did we ever have a great time!) and how much our little girl LOVED the characters. So, envisioning her lit-up face when she met each of the 41 characters we met, I knew we HAD to have some special guests. I rented two costumes, borrowed one costume and asked three high school students to dress up (they did an incredible job!) They surprised our little birthday girl! I arranged an area for them to stand and sign the autograph books. I was doing my best to mimic the character visits at Disney World. My sister-in-law took pictures of each child with each character. There's a spot for the picture on the same page as the signature. The idea was that the kids would have an autograph book, finished with a picture and autograph. This was the hit of the party! Worth. Every. Penny.
There you have it, folks, a classy princess party! I would do the same party in a heartbeat! We so enjoyed every minute :)
Vendors and Resources:
http://www.bigklittlek.com/ : invitation, printables, photography, and inspiration ;)
http://www.wildsorbet.com/: pink 12x18 frame in backdrop
http://www.pickyourplum.com/ : striped straws, frames in backdrop, stands for snack mix, cake stands (used for balloons on either side), washi tape, snack cups
Modern Cloth on etsy: fabric for table cloth, runners, and birthday girl dress for invitations
The Shipping Guru via etsy: gray baker's twine
PrettySweetPary via Amazon: wooden forks
Knextion via Amazon: crown cookie cutter
Oriental Trading: foam princess and king crowns and the swords given as a partying gift to the boys
Dollar Tree: wands given as a partying gift to the girls
Hobby Lobby: scrapbook paper, balloons, tulle
Target & Pampered Chef: white platters
Wal-Mart: plates, cups, napkins, crepe paper
Local, family friend: cake
Special Occasions in Jackson, TN: Cinderella and Prince Charming costumes