HOW TO: Throw a Circus Party fit for a clown
Last year’s theme: skateboarding. This year: the Big Top. And big it was….Charlie recently turned Lucky 7!
After attending circus school and hurling himself off of a trapeze platform, this little clown and his friends ventured back home, greeted with Platypus Designer Duct Tape crafts + lots of other treats.
Inspired by an image in the book “Every Day Counts” from Ikea, I pre-planned various tablescapes using goodies from lots of fabulous online sites and retailers.
Oriental Trading Company was my first stop for affordable circus-themed merchandise such as top hats, clown noses, DIY name tags, treat bag supplies, character bottle labels, striped cupcake collars + more.
And then the juggling balls started rolling….
Given Charlie’s fascination with Platypus, it was only befitting to include it in this party decor. (Some would say he is actually a Master Crafter…). So, my friend Kristin and I crafted like crazy both the night before and morning of the party….Nothing like Platypus People waiting until the last minute to decorate….And while no small undertaking, the DIY was easy to do. That’s the beauty of making stuff with Platypus tape – it’s quick party chic! And integrates with all sorts of entertaining + decorating motifs. High and low.
Without futher adieu, here are a few pics from Trapeze Arts in Oakland of Charlie climbing gigantic heights in order to fly….
Now let’s get this party started, shall we?
SET THE STAGE: PATIO TABLESCAPE
Totally sets the mood! And the kids loved having individual snacks
- Box of super cute “Ticket” invitation by Bella Ink from at Paper Source. Even has glitter! White prop box also from Paper Source (had there been time, would have covered it with Platypus) + yellow “star” punched lantern from Ikea. The lime acrylic tray is from Pottery Barn. They no longer sell it, but West Elm does.
- Retro peanut bags from Sweet Shop Lulu. I’m a nostalgic kinda girl so I love mixing past + present within decor. Somehow it just works. Digging these.
- Watering can glass vase spray painted in Krylon’s Short Cuts hobby/craft paint in Red Pepper. Use multi-colored plastic Pinwheels for a whimsical take on a flower arrangement. All from JoAnn. (Blue dotted bowl was part of a nesting set from Target, years ago.)
- Popcorn cones made out of Platypus Designer Duct Tape in Sour Apple Linen. The sun shone through the cones and created a circus-esque striped pattern – how fun is that?!! Acrylic cone holder from Sweet Shop Lulu. Other cute cones ideas: ice cream, nuts, candies or fresh fruit. Totally worth the $45 investment.
- Green dotted bowl full of clementines. Happy polka dotted tray from Ikea with grapes and carrots placed in charming little yellow dotted candy cups from Sweet Shop Lulu.
- Hand painted herb pot by Charlie made when he was 4. Sniff-sniff. Our babies grow up so quickly….
- Easily make popcorn cones by cutting approx. 6.5 inch square template out of parchment paper; repeat “x” times depending on the number of cones you need; cover one side of each square with tape pattern of choice; fold into triangle to create the cone shape; seal edge with narrow strip of tape.
- Buy bulk bags of popcorn + peanuts in shell at Costco. We bought enough to feed a whole family of elephants!
- If you make cones to hold ice cream, scoop scoops onto a cookie sheet + freeze them. They won’t melt as quickly during serving. How super is it that so many of Rob’s patterns mix + match for these cool treats: Picnic Gingham, Platy Orange Linen, Pool Chevron, Pink Polka Dot, Purple Polka Dot, Summer Grass. The matte finish on his designs looks so much more sophisticated as compared to the other shiny tapes on the market. They suit parties of all kinds, for “kids” of all ages.
PULL OUT ALL STOPS: KITCHEN TABLETOP
This scene is just awesome, I think. Some fun Platypus ideas here.
- Jumbo animals parade down the center. Find at Amazon from Learning Resources (and now they march across Charlie’s playroom bookshelves).
- Red dotted fabric from JoAnn turns into festive tablecloth hacked using a mere pair of scissors.
- Small plastic milk bottles from Sweet Shop Lulu gussied up with fun character labels. The kiddos giggled. (We also put them on beer bottles so the grown ups could enjoy too!)
- Darling retro paper stripey straws in circus hues from Sweet Shop Lulu.
- Rectangular red plates from Sweet Shop Lulu sit atop placemats made with Denim and Real Leopard Platypus Designer Duct Tapes.
- And…seriously, how cute is the yellow striped paper napkin folded like a clown bow tie?! Held together with Denim napkin ring. Awesome.
- For the placemats, use posterboard and cover with tape of choice to make a piece “fabric.” Then, add a contrasting border in your desired width + fold for clean edge. Our placemats were on the petite side to fit a smaller table. Buy plates first.
- For the napkin ring, you just need to fold a small piece of duct tape in half. Then seal with a tiny piece of tape. Slip around the pre-folded accordion pleated paper napkin. Easy peasy!
HEY, WHY NOT BEAUTIFY A BAR TRAY?
Serving drinks was never more fun!
- Assorted long balloons from Diddams are tied into bundles + added to plexi wine glasses from Pottery Barn. (Similar ones here.) So easy! Thanks to Brit Morin over at Brit.co for this stylish touch to stemware. Tutorial here. Total cleverness. I could see decking out in college colors (like Carolina Blue + white) for sports-minded parties/tailgates as well as all holiday themes.
- Red dotted napkins from Sweet Shop Lulu. Tray from Pottery Barn (again, try West Elm). And look at that itty bitty rhinosceros atop the napkin stack…such a cute on-theme surprise touch, I think.
- Glossy black elephant candleholders bought on sale at Target for $15 each with block candles from Ikea (elephants are totally lucky, by the way). Buy online here.
- Another hacked tablecloth. This one was made out of bicycle + unicycle screen printed jute from JoAnn, cut into 3 sections + layered on top of each other. I was so excited to stumble upon this fabric. One of my favorite ideas + I plan to throw lots of dinner parties with it!
- Red + white striped cupcake collars from Oriental Trading and Star cupcake toppers from Sweet Shop Lulu (these would be super cute made out of Platypus…) on a multi-polka dotted cake platter from Anthropologie, bought a few years back.
- Ruffled yellow stackable cake platters + candy dish called “Flirt” from Potluck Pottery. Note the M&M’s color palette is very circus-friendly.
- Homemade chocolate chip cookies on tidbit plates from CB2.
- Ikea “star” punched lanterns + candy dishes too.
- 7 colorful Birthday balloons from Diddams party store, a regional chain here in the Bay Area.
FINAL TOUCH: TREAT BAGS
And finally, the treat bags. The real reason that every kid wants to attend a birthday party….
- Adorable bags from Party City filled with circus-themed miscellanea from there and Oriental Trading. Two of my favorite inclusions were animal shaped crayons + plush animal bookmarks.
- Handmade gift tags out of Sour Apple Linen Platypus Designer Duct Tape hung with matching ribbon from JoAnn.
- Purchase a craft hang tag from Paper Source as template. Cover piece of card stock with tape. Then cut out tags + add hole punch.
- Then add personalized sticker. I find all my rubber stamps such as this one, ink pads, embossing powder, embossing tool and circle labels at Paper Source. Possibilities are endless + this gift tag idea can be applied for any holiday or occasion.
Well, that’s it folks. Hope you enjoyed the show. See you next year!
Because we’ll be here.
Laughing, crafting + celebrating.