Friday, March 23, 2012

A CRAFTernoon Party

Warning:  photo-heavy post.:)

B's CRAFTernoon party last weekend was over the top girly!  With kokeshi dolls, pink paper lanterns, and pink crepe paper curtains!   Blush pink, coral, watermelon, honeysuckle...  It was her birthday wish come true! 

Even the cookies are sprinkled with strawberry drops and fairy dust....
Since the birthday girl loves pistachios and dark chocolates, I also prepared cookies with white choco discs with sea-salt roasted pistachios and dark choco discs with roasted almonds.

The birthday cupcakes are another special request by the birthday girl:  Carrot cupcakes with Goji berries and dark chocolate cupcakes.  The Goji berries are a variation from the usual raisins that we find in carrot cupcakes.  Although usually used in Chinese savory dishes, it is naturally sweet and adapts itself perfectly well to B's favorite cupcake.
I enjoy preparing simple and intimate birthday parties for the kids, where most of the party decor are mostly DIY, and the guest list is whittled down to just a handful (literally - I just had her choose 10) good friends.  While I want my kids to remember their birthdays as fun events, I do not want them to associate parties with extravagance... so I always make an effort to inject their parties with DIY creativity - from the decor to the activities.

Making the crepe paper curtain was one craft party in itself!  While J and I took to our tasks seriously, B kept herself busy playing with the finished curtains, parading around with the curtains around her shoulder like a beauty pageant sash....

Setting up a DIY party, no matter how small the guest list, is always a tedious task so an extra pair of hands is always useful! The birthday banner is recycled, having used it here and here.  I just updated by printing some new graphics to make it tie-in with the rest of the theme.

And since this is all about B, she has her favorite crafts all lined up on the crafts table.  I had a craft table set-up on one end of the room, at the opposite end of the food buffet table.  The girls all had their own craft kits bundled up in a cute feline princess box.  I printed out the instructions for each craft and lalid out some samples to inspire and guide them.
I purposely wanted to show my 2 girls that our own individual creativity is boundless, and is not limited by the luxuriousness of materials.  I intentionally prepared crafts that would utilize materials that are readily available at my home: colorful board paper, craft embelishments like sequins and feathers, toilet paper rolls, magazine cut-outs, used envelopes, etc.   Do not be fooled - inspite of the materials being readily on hand, it still took quite an effort and took a LOT of my time preparing the craft kit for all ten girls.  Truly, it is a labor of LOVE!

The crafts are all carefully selected by me to maintain the kokeshi doll theme of the party, while at the same time I also wanted the crafts to be useful for the girls when they take it home.
{bookmarks made out of a printed kokeshi graphic and envelope corners}

{ hairclip and headband organizer made with toilet paper rolls and ribbons}

{kokeshi doll bookmarks fashioned from magazine cut-outs}
Here are some of the designs that the girls made

Even the boys at the party had a wonderful time doing something crafty with colored sands.

Happy Birthday, B!  Do know that you are extremely LOVED!