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Magic Show Birthday Party Table Setting

Magic Show Birthday Party Table Scape

Magic Show Birthday Party Table Scape


Add a personal touch to your magic show’s party table. The party table is always the centerpiece of a birthday party. It doesn’t matter where you host the party or the age of the kids or what activities there are, you always sit down and at least have cake! Right? So, make the table a memorable one.

Often we have parties at these large facilities or at a park or at home and it’s extremely hard to decorate the whole place to fit your theme. That is unless you totally want to blow the budget!!! So, pick a place and do it up! The eating table is a great place to start. You could also chose the serving table. It doesn’t really matter where, but concentrate some personal touches in one area and that will make more of an impact than trying to decorate and entire gym….for example.

Here the hostess, purchased some fabric yardage at a local store to use as the table cloth. So often the table cloths you buy are either not original or are just not what you want. But, especially now that quilting is so big, there are tons of fabrics to chose from. And the designs range from Disney to very sophisticated. And really you don’t even have to hem it. No one will ever notice. For the magic show theme, blue fabric with stars was perfect.

Simply cut the fabric the size you need for the table and lay it down! Nothing could be easier or more impactful. It really won’t take long to find what you want and add some solid plates and cups and you are done! No matter if you are doing a magic show theme or really anything else, there is something out there for you.

Magic Show Birthday Party Table Centerpiece

Magic Show Birthday Party Centerpiece

Magic Show Birthday Party Centerpiece


There is nothing more simple yet impactful than a centerpiece of balloons!

This birthday party revolved around a Magic Theme. In the center of the table was a magician’s hat with a group of helium balloons nesting in it. The hostess, aka mom, pulled the whole party together with a few simple colors which I thought were perfect. Blue, White and Silver with punches of red made the party really come together.

Remember that great ideas don’t always have to take you a lot of time to put together. Some of the best ideas are simple and easy to pull together!

Indoor or Outdoor Birthday Banner

Birthday Banner

Birthday Banner

Birthday banners are fun to hang up no matter the party theme or no matter if the party is outside, in your home or on location.

The paper ones out there are so completely hum drum. I’ve even tried to make paper one and they can be very personal and cute. The party where I photographed this had a paper banner as well.

But I really liked this idea. This is a purchased banner. It was cut in triangles with seams 1/2″ in from the edge so keep it from raveling. And then the top is sewn on to some seam binding or fabric folded over that resembled seam binding. You could totally make this yourself. Use left over fabrics or a specific theme of fabrics for the banner. With quilting at an all time high in popularity there are an unlimited number of themed fabrics out there. No matter if you are planning a vintage, outdoor, bug or halloween birthday party, this idea can be transformed to work.

Now, if I were making this myself, I might sew the seam binding on as it would be the fastest way of doing it……. But, if you don’t sew, you could make this birthday party banner by simply using hot glue or fabric glue to glue over one of the edges of the banner. I don’t have a template for the triangle but I plan to make one of these for one of my kids parties and when I do, I’ll certainly offer the pattern.

Just another way to let your creative juices go. Have fun with your birthday party banner and add some color to your child’s birthday party.

Outdoor Vintage Birthday Party Seating

Vintage Children's Chairs

Vintage Children's Chairs



When creating a festive birthday atmosphere, it’s important to add personal touches. Do you have fabrics at home that you love? Do you have dishware that you love to use? Or do you have just the cutest chairs and/or tables in your home?

These vintage chairs were brought out for the kids to sit on while at an outdoor kids birthday party. When you have enough to provide adequate seating for the kids, please use these items. They really set the tone and make the party stand out. And if vintage is what you are going for….anything beaten up will look vintage even if it’s not truly vintage.

Don’t have these items yourself? Know someone who does have them? Don’t be afraid to ask to borrow items. I just loaned 3 table cloths to a friend who needed them for a party today. I loved it as I want the items to be used and enjoyed and in my closet, no one will enjoy them. So, crack out those special – vintage items or borrow them and you will not regret it!

Outdoor Birthday Pinata

Outdoor Birthday Pinata

Birthday Pinatas don’t have to be traditional! It is much easier to find a pinata that matches the theme of the party you are having. But if you can find a unique decoration like this one, go for it.

The mom of the birthday girl found this decoration that a local store was about to discard. She took it, filled the center hole with candy and put some plastic in front to secure the candy. This party was for 4 year olds so she knew that her pinata wouldn’t be torn up that much. Even if it was, it didn’t really matter.

So, when thinking of having a birthday party pinata, think outside of the box and don’t feel like you can only use a pre-made pinata. Or even have your kids make one…….who knows.

Outdoor Birthday Gathering Spot

Outdoor Birthday Gathering Spot

Outdoor Birthday Gathering Spot


Many outdoor birthday parties will be at your home but probably more of the outdoor parties that we go to are on location somewhere. At a park, at a swimming pool or did I say at a park? If you are blessed to live in a city that is filled with parks, they are the perfect location to host a birthday party. And don’t forget how important it will be to mark a spot where the party will take place.

When you choose to have a party outside, decorations can be important to anchor where the “party” central is going to be. Another great way to designate the gathering spot is by throwing out a blanket or two. Blankets can add color as well as provide a space for the kids and moms for that fact to sit and enjoy.

I don’t know what it is but putting out a blanket provides a natural gathering spot. If you don’t own a “picnic” blanket, don’t worry. Use a colorful quilt or even a colorful sheet. I will say that a light sheet may be a bit pokey to use a term my daughter likes to use. Enjoy your party and be aware of the items you use to make your outdoor party cohesive.

Halloween Birthday Party Idea

Happy Birthday Lanterns Idea - Candle

Happy Birthday Lanterns Idea - Candle

For my daughter’s Halloween Birthday Party, I had an idea to use our mantel during the party. Her party was in December and the mantel had holiday decorations all over it. I simply removed those and transformed it into a ghostly “Happy Birthday Anne” sign made out of individual lanterns.

Key ideas of note: I used felt pads under the candles to insure that they wouldn’t stain the mantel but in hindsight, I would use the candles that float in glass jars and place a glass jar with water inside each ghost lantern. To make it interesting, I used 3 different ghost templates and you can see a link to those below.

Materials:
Cut 12″X12″ Heavy Scrapbooking Paper in two – Each lantern used a 6″X12″ piece. You’ll need one each of these per letter. Mine had 17 or 9 sheets of 12″X12″ Paper.
Cut heavy velum paper in 2 3/4″X5 1/2″ pieces. Again, 1 for each letter or lantern you will have.
Ghost Templates
Tape (painters tape works best if the color works), Scissors, Glue, Black pen for letters.

Happy Birthday Lanterns

Happy Birthday Lanterns

To Make:
Cut lantern body in 6″X12″ pieces.
Fold lantern body into 4 parts. Start half-wise and crease in fold and then fold half-wise again.
Determine which pane of the lantern will have the ghost cut out and make that the same for each lantern.
Trace the ghosts from our template and cut the one/ones you want onto the same pane for each lantern.
Glue with a paper glue or glue stick the cut velum behind your cut out ghost.
Trace or free hand the letters you want to show through.
Gently tape from the inside of the lantern to create a rectangle shape.

Resources:
Ghost Templates
Craft Stores or Scrapbooking stores will have the 12X12 Scrapbooking paper.
Some craft or scrapbooking stores as well as stationery shops will have sheets of velum.
Use a permanent black market for lettering.
Painters Tape found at home depot or local hardware stores and often in many colors.

Light your lanterns right before the party and you will love them. Be sure they aren’t in an area that can be bumped. Even using a candle inside a glass jar, it can get hot and the velum and paper is extremely flammable. Loved this Halloween Birthday Party idea!


Photos taken by Amy Hall of Amy Hall Photography, Portland, OR.

Colorful Birthday Banners

Colorful Happy Birthday Banner

Colorful Happy Birthday Banner

I have to be honest……I personally have not been very good about having the colorful “Happy Birthday” banner at my kids birthday parties. I’ve had a few things that have had Happy Birthday on them but to tell you the truth, my kids are still young and can’t read. So, if I personally had a banner it would be for the parents and not the kids. But then how many things do we do in our parties that are for the parents and not kids…..more than we want to admit.

Soooooo, I present the colorful Happy Birthday Banner. I love this one. It’s not something you see everywhere and it is truly vibrant with colors. I’m sure my friend who had this one purchased it and after doing a quick search myself there are all kinds of banners out there that you can purchase that are quite colorful and unique.

Don’t find what you are looking for? Make it. All this one would require is some felt, a string, scissors and glue. Cut out small shapes for the background. Even cut one a bit bigger to make the colors 3 dimensional. Then cut out your letters from a stencil and glue it all together and onto a string of your choice.

Or, don’t want to cut and glue. Paint one on some butcher paper. There are tons of paper places around now where you can buy butcher paper in all kinds of colors. Paint a Birthday message on it or let one of your children lose with the project. Just make sure it’s not the birthday girl/boy. Depends on how controlling you want to be in the way that it looks!

I do agree that once the kids start reading (kindergarten) would be a great time to start having a banner welcoming the birthday kid or even adult for that matter!

Colorful Balloons

Colorful Balloons

Colorful Balloons

I’ve said this before and I’m going to say it again. Balloons are the best way to add a punch of color to a birthday party.

To this party, the hostess actually had sort of a balloon theme. You’ll see when we write about the cake they had, you will see balloons on the cake and may have even been on the invitation.

But just look at these colors. Don’t they make you smile??? Another big key to having balloons is that they give height to your decorations. Most of the time we have birthday parties at places where the ceiling height is so high, the kids feel wee little. When you add balloons to the decor, they bring the scale back down to the kids level and can really set a “room.”

Colorful balloons. Go crazy. Pay to have someone else blow them up for you or rent a tank for a fraction of the cost from a local party supply store and blow them up yourself!

Have a Colorful Birthday Party!

Colorful Birthday Party

Colorful Birthday Party

Don’t want to have a theme like Barney or something of the link? Well, don’t. Successful birthday parties can be planned with something as simple as having a color infused birthday party.

When looking to do a “color” or simple birthday party, simply use a palate of colors throughout all the details of the party. Take a primary palate or maybe a soft color palate. Maybe all pink and red……or Pink and Green. There are endless combinations that could be used.

Another great thing about colors is that it makes for very nice party pics.

What contains the color? Start with your invitations, continue with the party decorations and if you can’t include the colors in the favors at least wrap them in paper that’s made of the colors of the party. Pretty simple? Not always. When you don’t pick out a specific theme and go for a “color” theme it actually gives you more options and thus more decisions to make. So, if you have a hard time making decisions on the details maybe you would be better suited to pick a specific theme.

Color effects your most important sense….your sight. The sky is the limit for planning your colorful birthday party!

Creating a Festive Atmosphere at Home

Festive Atmosphere

Festive Atmosphere


When you are hosting a birthday party in your home for your kids, it’s always important to provide a festive atmosphere. That doesn’t mean that you have to have the entire house decorated to the hilt. It simply means that there should be a spot carved out that you turn into “party central.”

At this almost sleepover, the hostess made the kitchen the focus of the party. They ate there as well as worked on their craft. As you can see here the area is very inviting to the kids and it really didn’t take a whole lot to create it.

Simply put down a festive table cloth. Add some balloons or big impactful centerpiece and a sign saying “Happy Birthday” and you are set.

Atmosphere……….atmosphere……atmosphere……..even kids are very visual!

Halloween Party Table Decorations

Web Table Overlay

Web Table Overlay

Decorating Tables for any kind of party can be very impactful to the image of the party. And it’s a great way to release the creative juices. I like there to be at least 1 pop item and here I used a home made Web table overlay for the decorations.

We had 3 tables for the kids to eat and then a serving/staging table and it also had an overlay. Underneath I had some burlap that I had bought for a ladies luncheon that I recycled and used with the webs which made a perfect combination. You can purchase yardage of burlap for very little money and simply cut it and leave the edges loose or hem them. I……just left them loose.

Table Overlay Box Form

Table Overlay Box Form

To make the webs, I had my husband to make a box out of scrap 2X4 wood we had in the garage. Nails were placed in the corners and center of each run. Slightly bend the nails out so that the yard or string doesn’t slip off while you are trying to work on it. Then your box is ready to go!

I used a knotty soft yarn for the web I made here, but you could use any kind of string or yarn. If you don’t plan to do a burlap underlay, you could even make the spiderweb out of twine and put it over a black paper table cloth. That would be super cute.

Knotting Table Overlay

Knotting Table Overlay

Start by cutting lengths to fit across each side and diagonally and tie a simple knot around each nail. To make the circular web part, start in the middle and make a knot encompassing as many of the stretched strands as possible. I left the yarn in a ball and just starting making my way around the web tying a knot at each intersection. It all depends on the size of your web but mine took about 3/4 of a ball to make each web. Just cut the end wherever you want and pull off the wooden form. Carefully fold it up and I just store mine in a plastic bag.

Resources: Black Yarn can be found at any hobby or knitting shop.  For a fuzzy look, I used Patons Allure 100% nylon.  It was a fuzzy yarn that I found at Michaels.  If you don’t have scrap 2X4′s at home, you can get them at a lumber yard, some hardware stores and even Home Depot. You might even be able to talk them into cutting and nailing it together for you. I use to do that when I was single!

Have fun making your Halloween party table overlay. This could even be done in red or pink and used on a Valentines Table for kids or adults. Something you can dress up or dress down!

Table Scene Photo taken by Amy Hall of Amy Hall Photography, Portland, OR.

Halloween Party Decorations

Halloween Party Decorations

Halloween Party Decorations

Welcome to my living room. Well, my living room make shift Halloween Birthday Party. Yes, those are Christmas Decorations you see in the back. Yes, the furniture is replaced by kid size tables. And yes, we had 26 kids. I know. Everyone has told me how crazy I am, but it was super fun.

Because it was holiday time, I needed to mask the decorations we already had up for that occasion. I’ve used balloons in the past but have never just let them fly around and bounce where they may. It was perfect. The balloons drew your eye up making the first thing the kids saw very festive and colorful. Halloween Party Decorations don’t have to be complicated, although you will find other ideas from this party that are. Often the ideas that make the most impact are simple like this!

We rented a helium tank from a local party store and blew up 100 balloons. With two people, it really doesn’t take that long and if you aren’t tying strings onto the balloons, it is even faster. Be sure not to be too monochromatic with the colors. Here we used black and orange and then pulled in the green for a splash that worked.


Photo taken by Amy Hall of Amy Hall Photography, Portland, OR.

Birthday Party Decorations

Birthday Party Balloon Wall

Birthday Party Balloon Wall

When decorating for a birthday party there are so many directions you can take that it can be overwhelming. Then when you throw in the fact that it’s the holidays and you are having a themed party or you are going to a gym and it can really be hard to tackle.

This party was just that. We had my daughter’s Creative Art Birthday party at a community gym which is huge and impersonal. You walk in to an area where the ceiling is lower and this was going to be my space for create the atmosphere with our balloon decorations. Then once we finished with the initial craft, they kids were let loose in the gym.

To create that atmosphere, I made a wall of balloons. You could do this with balloons or even streamers or signs or plants…..lots of things. We decided on balloons because I had lots of help to prepare for the party. We blew up about 100 balloons and then tied them on to varying lengths of string with a weight at the bottom of each. Let me tell you, this took some serious time but was so cute.

The other caution I might give you if you decide to take on this decorating project is to “let it go.” You will go to all this work on the balloons and then if you have small or big kids coming, someone will start picking up the balloons and will take off with them and mess the whole wall up.  It just happens.

Just now thinking. The way to go around this would be to just blow the balloons up without helium and suspend them from the ceiling to make the wall. Then the kids would bat at the balloon decorations but wouldn’t be able to pick them up and take them along for the ride!

Enjoy your party decorating!

Decorating the Table for a Princess Party

Princess Party Table Set Up

Princess Party Table Set Up


Decorating the table for a Princess Tea Party can be super fun. And the table can be quite elegant without being breakable!

First off this mom rented tables and chairs that were just the right height for the kids. Everything is more fun for them when the don’t have to struggle to eat or see things. Simple lilies were placed in the center of each table and they smelled sooooo good. Plates and “silverware” were purchased to look like china plates and were pre-placed around the table. Add some lovely napkins and your platters of food and possibly the cake or dessert and your table is all decorated with very little effort!

Resources: The cake was purchased at Bakery Bar in Portland, OR. China looking plates were purchased at Costco. Beautiful napkins can be purchased at many higher end groceries and gift/card shops.


Photo taken by Amy Hall Photography, Portland, OR.

Flower Party Balloon Decoration

Flower Party Decorations

Flower Party Decorations

There is nothing more uplifting that flowers. So, there could not be a better party theme to use for a birthday party than a Flower Party Theme! When you decorate for a flower party, it doesn’t always have to be real flowers. Craft some of your own colorful flowers to fill your home or party place.

These balloons are so easy to blow and and make into flowers. You can have them all over the place. And I’m just now thinking of this, but you could mount these on the top of a stick and do two green balloons to fasten to the side of the stick to make stand up flowers. Oooh. Even put them in a flower pot with sand in the bottom of even dirt.

To make them, choose 2 different colors: 4 balloons of one color and 1 balloon of a complimentary color. Tie 2 balloons together and then tie the other 3 together. At this point don’t try and tie them all together but twist them together and position the way you want. Sooooo easy.

Enjoy making decorations for your flower party. This one should make you smile.


Photos taken by Amy Hall Photography, Portland, OR.

Dance Party Decorations

Dance Party Decorations

Dance Party Decorations

Oh my goodness. My daughter’s birthday is just a few days before Christmas and so we are always battling something when planning and implementing her party. This particular year was no exception.

We had planned for this joint party to be held in a gym. There would be a stage as the big decoration focus for this dance party. Well, the gym was in a local community center. Mid December is started icing and snowing here in Portland and it snowed and it snowed and snowed. As a result everything was closed including our party venue!!!

What to do? Neither my friend or I wanted all these kids in our houses right before Christmas. Luckily my friend owns a restaurant in Nob Hill which is not far from our homes and because of all the snow and ice, her parties had cancelled and their party room was OPEN! Whoo Hoo.

Dance Party Balloon Decorations

Dance Party Balloon Decorations

We made the decision to change the venue at the last minute and phoned everyone of the change. Now what to do with a much smaller space and not much room to move around. Well, we had to set the stage with the decorations. And what better way to do that than with balloons!

After simply having star balloons at each eating table, we made these towers of balloons. A local party store had made candy canes out of balloons in their warehouse since it was Christmas time. So, to make it festive yet not too holiday, I just changed the colors. To make the tower you tie 2 balloons together the same color and 2 of an opposite color. Then you twist the 4 together to make a row. After you have made several of these sets, you simply wrap them around a vertical PVC pipe and place in a candy cane pattern.

To secure the balloon decoration, I put the PVC pipe in a small bucket filled with concrete. As the party went along they became part of the entertainment for the kids. We just pulled off the balloons and they batted them all around the room! Balloons are a hit at any party but especially can be festive decoration at a dance birthday party.

Superhero Birthday Party Ideas

Superhero Welcome Sign

Superhero Welcome Sign


When you have your birthday parties at home it can be more work sometimes as you have to clean up your house as well. But it can also afford you more flexibility with your party. As well as it offers more character.

Having banners around in bright colors is a great idea especially for a superhero party. Your home probably doesn’t have bright blue, yellow and red decor and that seems to be the theme colors of many superhero costumes.

Superhero Hall of Justice Banner

Superhero Hall of Justice Banner



The first banner the superhero guests saw was a welcome banner which guided them down to where the party started. This allowed the host and hostess to be down with their guests and not standing at the door directing traffic!

Where cake and sandwiches were service, the dining hall was called the “Hall of Justice.” There is nothing little superheroes like to inflict more than a little justice. When looking for impactful ideas for your superhero birthday party, having large colorful signs is an easy way to achieve that.

Resources: Colorful butcher paper and paints can be found at many teacher supply store, party supply stores or craft stores. Often they are in large rolls that allows you to roll off and buy only the amount you want. So, it would be important to know about the length of your sign before you go.

Photo taken by Amy Hall Photography, Portland, OR.

Pig Birthday Party Table Display

Pig Birthday Party Table Display

Pig Birthday Party Table Display

For this piggie birthday party, I didn’t plan very far in advance.  Instead of having a special centerpiece or table display, I decided to display the favors in one big pile in the middle of the table.  Keep in mind that this party was for my 1 year old son so it was all minimal.  Any big party you plan for a 1 year old is for yourself and not the children.  And that’s O.K.  if it’s your thing but we just weren’t in to that for this party.

The boxes are custom boxes with cupcakes inside.  On top is the birthday boy’s pig birthday hat.  Instead of making each child a birthday hat, I chose to make them all piggie noses to wear.  Those are organized and displayed on the boxes for a fun extra dimension to the stack.

Table decorations at birthday parties are all about color and carrying on the theme.  When it’s in a home the decorations don’t need to be as large as if you were in a building with high ceilings.

This pig birthday party theme was really fun.  Ages of the kids who attended ranged from 6 months to 4 years and all enjoyed the creative theme.

Train Birthday Party Table

Train Party Table Dec

Train Party Table Dec

A Train Birthday Party can be so colorful and fun without having to be Thomas the Train. Here a is a beautiful table with a train spread across the table and each train has it’s own special decorations. I’ll be doing a post specifically on the cake so look for it.

This table has a few flowers to tie in the colors, a plastic throw away table cloth, Colorful bowls with a few candies and confetti scattered around.  It was so picturesque.

This train birthday party was at the child’s home and we all walked down to the local park for some child entertainment.