One of the activities during my daughter’s birthday party was allowing the kids to create their own trick or treating bag to be used later in the party. The blank bags were left on the tables to decorate as they arrived and once they were finished with their artistic creation, I had tags ready for them to slap on their bags so that they could dry in the corner safely and not get torn apart during other events during the party.
Sure you could use regular tags and write everyone’s name on it to have ready but what is the fun in that? I would recommend for sure filling out the tags in advance if you don’t decide to create them. More often that not multiple kids are finished at the same time and you don’t want to have to stress over filling out their names at the last minute.
Halloween Trick or Treat Bags in Wait
I had seen Martha Stewart do something similar to this and then used them as necklaces. But I made up my own template and went with the tag idea instead. Having them all on the counter in my kitchen allowed kids and/or parents to easily find their kids tag and I didn’t even need to be involved. I would recommend having a few extras made that are blank for those show up guests that you weren’t expecting!!!
How to: Take a piece of wax paper and place it over either our template or your own ghost template. I used two different ones just to spice it up a bit. Really you don’t need a template. I just found it faster as I was making a large number of them. Next, apply a liberal amount of glue to the wax paper. Using a tooth pick guide the glue into the design you’d like. Mine created bubbles that I tried popping with the toothpick and was not always successful. I don’t think that matters too much. Set it aside to dry and after it’s completely dry, peal it off the wax paper. Write the kids names in sharpie. Cut 2 slits at the top and insert ribbon to tie one your favor.
I will give you one word of caution. I don’t know if it was the inexpensive nature of the glue I used or if I tried to dry them too fast, but some of mine got brittle. So, you might not want to do this too far in advance and you might want to put away from curious onlookers so that they don’t all fall apart before you need them. If you try this and use a great glue, share with us what you did so we can all benefit! Enjoy the project.
Resources:Ghost Template, School Glue, Ribbon, Wax Paper, straight edged blade.
Because I knew that we were going trick or treating during my daughter’s birthday party, I wanted to have some special treat bags for them to carry. I didn’t want just plastic or paper bags…..although now that I’m thinking about it…..it would be just as fun for the kids to decorate paper sacks to use as their treat bags. And less work for you. But who wants less work? Ha! I seem to make things more complicated that they can be…..says my husband. It’s simply that I like things to be just so.
So! We wanted treat bags for the party. After looking online, I couldn’t find at the time a plain treat bag that I liked or that was the right size. Thus, I made them. A bunch of them.
Halloween Trick or Treat Bag Supplies
Supplies you’ll need are shown here. The bag…..if you can find it, certainly purchase them. Or make them and I explain how I made mine below. Having a smattering of randomly size and shape pieces pre-cut was helpful as all the kids had to do was to apply the faces to the bags with a fabric glue that I had poured out in a plate for all to share.
I turned this into a project to give the kids something to do as all the kids were arriving. This party was in our home and our living room turned into party central. And we had a tent. First stop was the living room where the kids made their own party bags. I had 3 tables set out with chairs and disposable table cloths that could be whipped up and thrown away for phase two of the party.
Halloween Treat Bag Step 1
I’m sure there are 20 ways you could make this treat bag. This is only 1 way. I didn’t do a very good job of photographing each step. You’ll need to read the steps here and just use the images as overall reference. Felt was the easiest fabric to use as it holds it’s shape pretty well and you don’t have to sew under raw edges!!! For the handles I cut 2 strips 10″ long x 1″ wide for each bag. To give it a bit of a finished look, you can sew the two edges together longways leaving an 1″ or so on either end to connect to the bag. To me it make it look more like a “bag handle.”
Halloween Treat Bag Step 2
For the bag itself you’ll need (2) pieces of felt 10″ x 8″ wide and (2) pieces 10″ x 4″ wide. May I repeat that there are many ways of skinning this cat and this is just my own twisted way of making these. My biggest goal is that I wanted to be boxy and I wanted to top stitch the edges. OK. First step is to make a box of sorts. The two wider pieces of felt are the front and back. The two smaller pieces are the sides. Start seaming or top-stitching a front to the side and then that side to the back. Seam that back to the second side and then complete the box by seaming the other side to the front panel. Now you have made a “box that could stand up but has no bottom yet. I started using a fancy stitch but it was taking too long and ended up just doing a top stitching seam.
Making Halloween Trick or Treat Bags
Turn this “box” inside out and then fold the “box” flat matching the side seams. At this point the side panels will be folded in half and the front and back should be against each other. Seam across the bottom about 1/2″.
Now you’ll want to make your corners. With the “box” still inside out, pull the bottom corners out to seam. Look at the “step 1″ photo above to see how the corner should be pulled out and seam a triangle and cut off extra. If this is confusing to anyone, let me know and I’ll try and explain better.
Turn right side out, attach the handles either by hand or seaming on your sewing machine. And you are done! Well, until the party. At the party, let the kids use the cut black felt pieces to use their imagination in creating their own pumpkin face!
Use this template for anything. We used it to make eye ball shirt favors for my daughters Halloween birthday party. You don’t need to paint it perfectly. But I would leave more of a seam allowance around the edge than shown here!
Part of decorating for your party is the reveal or displaying of the party favors. If the favors are colorful and eye catching make them front and center. This will also help you remember to give them out at the end of the party. I don’t know about you but I get so busy with the party that it seems like a kid always slips out the door without me having said “good-bye” or given them their favor. Horror.
These shirts that I made were a great addition to the decorations for our prep table. I had a table dedicated to holding everything for the party. This party was at my house and my kitchen being a galley kitchen didn’t have a lot of room on the counters for the extras. So, on the prep table, I had all the cups, plates, favors, cake, cake cutter and anything that I needed easy access to for the party but didn’t want it front and center under my foot.
Displaying Halloween Favors
I carefully folded and rolled up the shirts for the kids and tied them off with some balloon ribbon. Then I had some left over pieces from making crowns and decided to give the eye balls crowns! It looked like little monsters. I have this old tray that I use to use in the garden that I displayed the shirts and moved them around on. You need something to contain your favors. I hardly ever just line them up unless I KNOW that I won’t want to move them later.
If you have a favor that doesn’t need a treat bag, don’t put them in one! Continue to use your creativity and display them proudly. And don’t forget to put the kids names on them somehow so that it will be easier to hand out quickly when the mass exodus is happening.
I have to admit that this is NOT an original idea. I saw it on someone else’s blog and I can’t find it again. Please let me know if this is your idea and I will give you credit! OK. Now that that is out of the way. This was such a fun favor to give the kids for my daughter’s Halloween Birthday Party. I made girl shirts and then boy shirts. The girls were orange and the boys were black.
It was a very easy shirt to make. I used an old T-Shirt of my husband’s the paint the eyes. At first, I was going to put two eye balls for folks to think they had eyes on their backs. But then thought it would be funnier to just use one. The original idea that I saw, they had put eye balls all over the shirt but that would have been just way too much work since I was making quite a large number of these.
Eye Ball Shirt Supplies
Make sure you use an inexpensive acrylic paint to insure that it doesn’t wash out when you wash the shirt. Another mistake I made was to not leave enough room around the eye ball to have a “seam allowance”. So, make sure when you cut the eyes out, you allow 1/2″ to 1″ to sew around. Steps: Paint they eyes, let them dry and cut out. Sew them face down on the inside of the shirts. Then go and cut out the front to make the eye ball show. You can play with it and make it look like the eye has a lazy eye or be wide open.
These T-Shirts were such great favors. The kids loved them and it was fun to see them being worn to school for months after the party.
I bought girl specific and boy specific t-shirts from target. But, you can get them anywhere.
One of dad’s old undershirts
Fabric Paint – Blue, Green and/or brown for color in eyes; black for pupil; white for shine in eye – Found at any craft store
Red Permanent Marker with fine tip for bloodshot eyes – Found at any craft store
Wide bristle paint brush
Below is a template I used to make the eyes uniform.
This is a photo of part of the loot that was in the scavenger hunt that we had for my son’s party. The first thing the kids got was a bandanna that I made from black polka dotted fabric. Depending on the age of the kids, you may want to make yours bigger. I made mine 22″ square. And honestly, I went the quick route. I didn’t hem them or anything. Just cut the size and ripped the fabric. The little pirates looked so cut walking down the street all wearing their pirate bandanas. And years later, this is the one thing that my kids still play with.
In addition to the bandana, the kids searched for coins, tatoos, hats, jewels and other items. The long black thing in the photo above was an inexpensive telescope that I found. At the beginning of the hunt, we gave them all pirate backpacks that we ordered from Oriental Trading. You can see it in the background of the above photo.
The below photo was a take away bag that my kids received from another pirate party that they went to. I don’t know what it is about little, please excuse me, crap……they just love it. And the more the better. I try hard in this blog to give you favor ideas that are things your guests will just to home and throw away. But sometimes you just have to relent.
Pirate Loot Grab Bags
At party stores or even Oriental Trading you can get all kinds of inexpensive loot items. The jewels we got at the craft store and they were “crystals” or just rhinestones if you are an adult. You could even put rocks in there and call them pirate moon rocks. Kids imaginations are just wonderful.
Pirate Bandanas were made from fabric that you can find at any fabric or quilting store.
The “Crystals” were found at a local craft store. Most of the time are sold in little bags. These weren’t cheap so we didn’t have many of those.
Then for the backpacks, hats and such: www.OrientalTrading.com
There are many ways to organize birthday party favors and their presentation. If you have several small items, putting them in a bag, box or some other container is necessary. It you have a larger item it may not be necessary to put it inside anything but you should think about it’s presentation.
In the vein of a bag or box, it’s very easy to tie these in to a color theme party. Simply use a solid color bag or box and add a colorful fabric ribbon that matches the party theme. This party was for a little girl who was having a party and invited boys and girls. The boy favors had a blue ribbon and the girl favors had a pink or yellow colored ribbon.
Favor bags can be quite simple and yet can still make a splash with color.
We threw a Halloween Party with another family for the kids and adults but only the kids received favors. The witch brooms were the perfect simple favor for them.
These are simple to make and double as some creative decorations. The idea came form an article I saw in a Martha Stewart somewhere but I can’t remember exactly where. I just remembered the concept.
Directions for the Favors: Take 2 small brown lunch sacks. Keep one whole that you put candy corn or suckers or anything you wish inside it. Take the second back and cut slits all the way down the sides leaving the bottom solid. Insert candy into first bag and cut a short stick from your yard to add for the handle. Wrap that bag with the cut one and wrap around the mouth to secure to the stick or broom stick. I used some macrame’ cord I had hanging around but you could use anything. Yarn, ribbon….really anything will do and many colors would work. Try red, orange, brown, grey, black or yellow for the cording on your Halloween favors. The brighter the color the more of a impact the brooms will make. The red made a nice punch.
Resources: Paper bags can be found at Michaels or at many grocery stores. Candy of your choice. Cording at any fabric or craft store or even hardware store for twine. Sticks from your yard or the side of the road in a wooded area.
Group your broomsticks to make an impact for your Halloween Party guests and they will ooh and aah over them.
Having a Pirate Birthday Party and need ideas? Provide eye patches, hats and some fun beads and the kids will create their own party. There is nothing like dressing up to get kids in the mood to roll play. And a Pirate party lends itself quite nicely to just this.
Here you can purchase the hats and beads either made of felt or of paper. Long term the felt hats are going to last longer as the paper ones will tear up pretty quickly. This is an idea that the kids will play with. And it’s something that is appropriate for many ages.
Pirate Birthday Party Favors
For one of these parties, there were your basic birthday party games like the bean bag toss and others and as prizes, the birthday boy gave away the bead necklaces. So, at the end of the party everyone compared their booty they collected at the party. Then the mom provided a trunk that it could all be stored in. Would have given you a pic of that as well……but I’m afraid ours has been lost.
Resources: Felt hats, trunks, eye patches and necklaces can be found at Oriental Trading.
Photo taken by Amy Hall Photography, Portland, OR.
Party hats for the kids who come to a birthday party or just the birthday child don’t have to be elaborate. We embellished these pre-made hats for my daughter’s 3rd Creative Art Birthday Party.
The red hats were bought at a party supply store. Simple red hats. I took some old white boas and cut them to hot glue around the bottom of the hat and then a little poof at the top. For the birthday girl, I used some white squirt on paint to write the number 3.
Super easy but gives the kids something to put on when they are singing happy birthday……which they absolutely love to do.
Photo taken by Amy Hall Photography, Portland, OR.
Adding a pre-made name tag to birthday party favors is a great idea to do. A name tag does several things. Making tags with each child’s name on it is the best way to make them feel special. They know that you were expecting them and feel like care was made on that favor just for them.
Providing a tag with the kids names on it will put your mind as a hostess at ease that you have a favor for each child who plans to attend. Then at the end of the party, if you have any left over you will immediately know what children were not able to come. This allows you to schedule play dates with those kids or at least acknowledge that you noticed they weren’t there. Another way to make your guests feel special.
These tags were placed at the top of made up playdough given as a party favor at my daughter’s creative art party. It included a copy of the recipe used to make the playdough that was in the tubs allowing the guests to make the playdough themselves if they wanted to. To personalize it, my handwriting is not very good. Therefore, even thought it’s more work, I like to copy or cut out letters. Here I cut out each letter to the kids names who were attending. Since their names were mostly longer than the tag I had made, I just overlapped them.
Giving homemade play dough as a gift to a birthday child or as birthday party favors is a great idea. I don’t know of one child who does not like play dough. I even like to play with play dough and I’m way beyond the child stage! Play dough is super easy to make. Add in a few play dough playing accessories and you have a perfect gift or favor.
Let me tell you…..we had about 15 kids at this party. So, that’s 15 X 3 tubs of play dough. 45 tubs of play dough doesn’t sound like much but when you start making it, it can take some time. Luckily it can all be made early!
After making different colors of play dough, I put a nice size ball in each tub and tied 3 tubs of play dough together with a red ribbon which was one of the party colors. On top, I added a rolling pen and a couple of cookie cutters. To insure all the kids had a favor, I added a name tag at the top that we’ll talk about in another post.
Lining all these up did make a nice visual impact. Too bad I didn’t think to take a photo of it at the time to share with you.
Boys can have fun at a Princess Party too! Just have a few things for them to play with that are boy related and they are good to go. When they are young they really don’t care that the decorations are pink!
These inflatable swords are a perfect gift for the boys as they love to exert that testosterone! These were blow up swords that were given as favors and are super easy to blow up. They don’t blow the budget, they are sizable and you will get lots of play out of them.
All girls love wands that they can waive in the air to change their frog into a Prince. Or just bonk others on the head……hopefully not…..but you never know.
Anyway, having these simple wands as favors are perfect. You can certainly purchase wands like these or you can make them as well. Simply cut out two stars and hot glue them together with a dowel in the center. You might spray paint the dowels black first. After they are all glued together, you can glitter your wands.
These princess party favors have each child’s name typed out on a flag in an old english font and taped on to the handle to insure all the kids at the party receive a favor.
Photo taken by Amy Hall Photography, Portland, OR.
For a more sophisticated party hat, you can use a beautiful wrapping paper and our plain hat template to make your own.
There are so many beautiful wrapping papers now, that you can transform any of them into a party hat. If you are using a good quality heavy paper, you can use it all on it’s own. If the paper is more flimsy, you will need to make the hat out of a heavier solid color scrap booking paper and then cover it with your themed paper before assembling the hat.
Go crazy. For the flower birthday party, use any kind of floral paper you can find. Or even make it out of a solid paper and put dried flowers on them. Dried pansies would be beautiful! Just have fun making your own party hats.
For my daughter’s 2nd Birthday the theme was a Flower theme. We mainly used balloons to make and incorporate the theme. But as you can see here, I went for a custom party hat for her.
This hat was created using our plain party hat template. Use as heavy of a paper as you can if you plan to embellish it like I did.
How To: Cut hat form out of hard scrap booking paper. Cover the hat form with a fabric. I used a see through fabric but you could use tons of things…..silk would be neat or even a fabric with a pattern. Glue the top tassel inside the hat and then glue down the back to make your cone shape. I used hot glue for an immediate fix. And this can certainly go quicker and is easier with an extra pair of hands. My mom provided those for me…..thanks mom….Cut 2 holes on either side with a hole punch to insert elastic for the chin strap. Add finishing trim to the bottom of the hat. The final touch would be to use some squirt paint (sorry I don’t know it’s correct name) to write on the front or just leave it plain. If you were using a patterned fabric, you could put glue and glitter on strategic spots.
No matter if you are having a Flower Birthday Party that is all about digging in the dirt or if it’s a cute little girl’s birthday party, you can still bring in unexpected surprises to the party. My daughter’s first birthday party was a flower themed party. It was small and we only invited cousins.
For each of the guests, I made these balloon flower rings as part of the favors. Once you figure out how to hold your mouth right, they weren’t too bad to make. They are made with two of the long hot dog shaped balloons that are different colors. It really doesn’t matter what colors you choose so I would opt for colors that compliment the theme of the party or the invitation colors.
Flower Birthday Party Favor
Take one balloon and blow it up almost completely and tie off at the end. Twist small balls of the balloon starting at the tied end. Hold on to that “petal” and keep twisting to make additional petals. Once you have the number you want, tie the two ends together and cut off any excess. To make the center of the flower take another long balloon and blow only enough air to make a center petal and tie off right under that air pocket. Loop the rest of the balloon around to make the ring part and tie again close to the bottom of the air pocket. Slide the center balloon into the middle of the other petals and place on your finger.
To display for your party guests as they arrive, simply place them on a stick that is smooth enough that the balloons won’t pop but still gives you an earthy feeling. These are cute favors for any age of kid or adult for that matter.
Photos taken by Amy Hall Photography, Portland, OR.
Having a Birthday Dance Party for little kids was really fun. And what was more fun was to see parents and kids realizing that they can like the same music!
As part of the kids favors for this dance party, we put together a Dance Party Music CD that we gave to each family. We photoshopped the cover images and made a collage on the front of the jewel case. We could have gone a step further and made a sticker for the front of the CD but didn’t. They are easy enough to do. All you have to do is purchase the stickers from Avery or someone and then use their software. I hear it’s pretty easy.
Anyway, we wanted to share our song list with you in case you want to make your own dance party CD. Vogue, All Star, Gettin’ Jiggy, Faith, Can’t Touch This, Celebration, Come On Eileen, To Be Real, Hooked, Sweet Home Alabama, Joker, Comin’ Out, Tide is High, Curious George, YMCA, Jack & Diane, Dream Machine, When It’s Over and Brown Eyed Girl.
Enjoy your own dance party. This is just the beginning. There are many more popular dance songs to add to your music list.
Favors for a Birthday Dance Party are pretty straight forward and ones that will be played with for hours and hours and hours.
For my daughter’s Dance Birthday Party, we gave cool glasses, mics and Cds of cool dance music. We still get in the car and she asks for her “birthday” song…..not knowing that millions of other people get down to these songs. We wrapped them in simple celophane bags that had disco circles on the bags and had them in a basket at the door for the kids to grab as they were coming in or leaving.
Dance Party Mic Favor
It was a hoot watching the kids dance to music that we danced when we were young. They loved it!
Top Photo taken by Amy Hall Photography, Portland, OR.
Hi! I'm Holly with my daughter Anne. We are pleased that you too like to organize creative birthday parties for your kids! Learn Why I started this Blog.
We Love Feedback
We want to hear from you! Did you like or are you able to use any of our ideas? Leave a Comment. This helps us know what ideas are working for our readers and what we should do more of! And thank you in advance!