Last month, I had the opportunity to style a fun Pool Party Playdate event hosted by Huggies® Little Swimmers. As awesome as it was to hang out at a super cool beach house venue for a day and be treated to professional catering (I still think this is the cutest watermelon shark fruit salad ever!) – those probably aren’t the same circumstances that most of the pool parties and swim playdates will be held under, right? ;)
SO… I was very happy when they also asked me to “bring the party home” so to speak – and to share some creative pool party or playdate inspiration with you guys in a home setting, and with more of a DIY perspective.
Pool Party Playdate at Home
All of the images shown here feature the same general look & feel as the event, but the set up is in my own backyard. Sonny (my husband) took the pics, and of course our kids were more than happy to jump into them as well, including our 2 year old, who was downright ecstatic to see Ariel prominently featured on her Little Swimmers diaper. Ah… the little things!
And speaking of little things, the color-blocked party favor bags filled with mini Swedish fish made me equally ecstatic, especially given how easy they were to make!
I’m not sure if it’s the bright primary colors, the happy “snorkeling” whales, or a combo of both, but as far as my own projects go, this has quickly become a personal favorite… I hope you enjoy it too!
PARTY HIGHLIGHTS to look out for:
- DIY styrofoam beach ball garland + beach towel table runners
- Whale & submarine bath toy caddies-turned party decor with a little spray-paint + fun fillers!
- Beach pails filled with “little swimmer” snacks + no-spill mini milk bottles for drinks
- Bubbly “POOL” centerpiece made from wooden letters + blue tissue confetti & glue dots
- Submarine sandwiches embellished with bendy straws + rainbow licorice “pool noodles”
Theme Design & Inspiration
My goal for this theme was to keep it playful and fun, with a healthy dose of childlike whimsy. What I found in the process is that It’s surprisingly hard (if not impossible) to keep a backyard pool party from feeling very specifically “beach”… and there are definitely a lot of crossover beach party elements here – like the DIY beach balls (inspired by this adorable tutorial), sand toy snack pails, and of course the fish and whale graphics. (Hopefully neither of those are swimming in your pools!) I tried to get a good amount of “pool” specific elements in here too though, from pool-tile inspired patterns to the decorated wooden “POOL” letters and licorice “Pool Noodles”. Hopefully the result is a generous amount of inspiration that works for both types of parties and playdates. :)
- DIY swim party plates (plastic square plates customized with printable plate liners spray-mounted underneath)
- Wooden forks embellished with patterned paper
- Mini milk bottles with colored lids + blue polka dot straws
- Striped napkins folded to look like beach towels
- Beach towel table runner + DIY styrofoam beach ball garland
- Centerpiece: Giant balloon + $1 pail from Ikea + tissue fringe filler
- Kids chairs embellished with blue tissue fringe & hand-cut paper silhouettes
- Printable “I’m Thirsty” Drink Sign
- “Blue Ocean” punch + drink dispenser embellished with whale silhouettes
- Polka dotted & striped straws with party flags + translucent blue cups
- Accent Decor: DIY styrofoam beach balls, beach towel runner, & upside-down basket riser
- Beach towel table runner + DIY styrofoam beach ball accents
- “Little Swimmer Snack Pails” decorated with party circles & filled with fish crackers, applesauce, & fruit cups
- Submarine shaped bath toy caddy spray painted yellow & filled with flowers + a printable “PARTY” flag
- Printable “Let’s Eat” sign suspended from an open frame with natural twine
- Blue cellophane used as “wave” filler for the red tub sign holder (actually a garden planter from Ikea)
- Sliced Submarine Sandwiches decorated with straws + Goldfish shaped mac-n-cheese
- DIY giant sun made from styrofoam & wooden dowels
- Printable Treats Sign + beach towel runner
- Colorful “Pool Noodles” (aka Rainbow Twizzlers)
- “Make your own” Candy Cups with color-coordinating candies
- Grocery store cupcakes displayed in striped baking cups (so easy!)
- Party Flags used as cupcake toppers
- Embellished whale bath toy caddy filled with polka dot balloons
ACCENT DECOR & FAVORS
- Wooden POOL letters, painted and embellished with blue tissue circles for a “bubbly” look
- Wooden SWIM letters, painted white & embellished with patterned paper
- Tissue fringe strung around the yard in “wave” form
- Color-blocked muslin favor bags filled with Swedish Fish
If you have questions on where to find or how to make anything else, feel free to ask away in the comments section below. :)
Disclosure: Compensation was provided by Huggies® via Glam Media. As always, all thoughts and opinions expressed here are my own. Thank you for supporting the brands that enable us keep the creative content coming!
- Theme Sponsor: Huggies® Little Swimmers
- Party styling, graphic design, photography, & food: Hostess with the Mostess
- Printables – Additional matching designs available as Instant Download Collection on HWTM Etsy
- Mini milk bottles, balloons, straws, napkins, candy cups, and tissue confetti: The TomKat Studio