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Vintage Images and Banner

Get ready to be transported back in time with this Vintage Transportation Birthday Party! The assortment of vintage images that Christen Waller of Life:Styled used throughout every detail of the party really set the stage for her son’s desire to have a planes, trains and automobiles themed birthday party.  Clever “ticket” invitations mailed out in vintage map envelopes created by Christen were the perfect way to prepare guests for what to expect at the party.

There were homemade racetracks, vintage map paper airplanes displayed in orange tree branches, a Baggage Claim favor station {complete with homemade luggage bags for guests to take home!}, a 1940’s Lionel train and track chugging it’s way around the food table, passports for each guest to have stamped at the various creative destination stations and even a Captain’s V.I.P. Lounge for the adults serving up wines and local artisan beers on tap.

Vintage Transportation Birthday Party

Vintage Transportation Birthday Party

Grab your passport and get ready to travel to all of the other clever elements of this party. You’ll also find for links to tutorials for several of the DIY elements (including the adorable aviator sunglass shirt she made for her son) as well as the FREE printable Vintage Birthday Banner Christen has generously shared!

Vintage Map Decor, Invitations and Homemade Lavendar Scented Pillow Favors

Vintage Transportation Birthday Party

Favor Cookies

Vintage Transportation Birthday Party

Favor Baggage Claim Station

Vintage Transportation Birthday Party

Vintage Transportation Birthday Party

Vintage Transportation Birthday Party


PARTY DETAILS, as told by Christen

My son wanted planes, trains and automobiles for his third birthday party. So I took that as a great avenue to try and do something a little different than the other transportation themes out there. I had a ton of wonderful vintage images that I was using to decorate his room with so instead I used them for his party first, and was able to still use other pieces after the party ended.

I designed invitations that were “tickets” and mailed them in vintage map envelopes I made from an old map.

Party Favors
I made paper airplane pillows filled with lavender and chamomile for each kiddo to go in the favor bags. Also in the favor bags were sugar cookies with a plane, train or automobile and TW3 (birthday boys initials and age).
Favor bags at “baggage claim”, last stop on their passports  I made the favor “luggage” bags out of brown paper bags and attached thank you tags with twine.

Party Decor Elements
Birthday boy’s initials covered in vintage maps were part of the decor. I simply cut out the map to fit a side and Modge Podge’d on, then a coat on top to seal it. Vintage map paper airplanes were strung together and drapped over orange tree branches in a vase that served as the centerpiece of the food table. A banner spelling Happy Birthday was strung together with twine. Each letter was a different vintage picture of a plane, train or automobile.

Party Food
The food table had green paper lanterns hanging from above and a 1940’s Lionel train and track going around the food.

Mini Salami Sandwiches: bagels, salami, goat cheese and basil, held together with handmade party picks. Cloud 9 Strawberries: Chocolate dipped strawberries.  Propeller Pesto Potato Bites: small potatoes filled with pesto and sprinkled with parmesan.  On the Move Oreo Pops: Chocolate dipped Oreo pops with a color coordinated M&M. (Adapted from this recipe.) Donut Control Tower: We cut a piece of 2×4, drilled a hole in the middle, glued a dowel in, and spray painted white to serve as a “control tower” for powdered donuts. A mini gluten free chocolate cake adorned with M&M’s (birthday boys favorite candy) with bite size round cut outs for the guests. Drink station: A vintage print served as the backdrop for the lemon, lime and cucumber water and coffee. Individual blue punch bottles for the kiddos.

Each guest was greeted with and prompted to take a passport. Inside the passport explained the four different stations the kids could visit with a challenge at each one. Once completed they received a stamp to continue to the next stop. The first station for the kids was the car races. We painted 2 race tracks on butcher paper taped to tables for them to race away. The kids enjoyed basket full of cars for racing! The second station prompted the kids to make paper airplanes and see who could throw theirs the furthest. The runway table with chairs around served as a place to sit and eat or make planes. Third station was an egg hunt (the party was the day before Easter). We gathered all the kids and set them loose to find their eggs. It was a huge hit. Each station had their own corresponding vintage sign that also matched a photo in the passport.

Extra Party Elements
The Captains VIP Lounge was a station for the adults. It was located on the back deck overlooking the festivities. We served a variety of wines and a local artisan beer on tap, Brood Brewery.

Tutorials and Free Printables provided by ChristenWaller:
Aviator Sunglass Shirt tutorial
Party Picks tutorial
Homemade Luggage Bag Favors
Vintage Transportation Happy Birthday Banner