Welcome to Neverland

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Another year passes by and kids party season is once again taking over our home.  Pippa this year decided on a Neverland party theme and unlike last year where I completely forgot it was her birthday until a week before, this year I was on top of it – or so I thought.  It never ceases to amaze me just how many trips to the same shops I need to do when planning a kids party.  Spotlight almost welcome me on a first name basis and the people at Art Friend must be totally confused as to why I need one more timber round, fake moss, glitter spray and little timber boxes.  Like seriously…what is that woman making?  Well…I was making Neverland of course!

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My starting point for any party planning is of course the theme – which is generally chosen by the kids.  I use my usual go-to references like Pinterest to source ideas and then before I go any further I decide on the colour palette for the theming.  I know that sounds quite specific but it makes a huge difference in anchoring your ideas and giving you a clear sense of how it will look and what you need to buy.  The colour palette I chose for this party was emerald green, yellow, gold, candy pink, blush and ballet pink.

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As you know I’m a fan of easy and impactful decorating when it comes to kids parties and I want to be able to achieve it on my own so nothing can be too complicated.  For this party I opted to thread lengths of ribbon along the backs of the chairs and then replicate this look with hanging wreaths above the table – which I made using lightweight embroidery hoops threaded with ripped strips of fabric.  For a little extra Neverland magic I made glittery star garlands to hang down with the fabric and cut out pictures of the Neverland characters to hang down the centre of the wreath.

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I am also a huge fan of picnic boxes for the food.  It is a super easy way to add to the table decorations and it is a much more convenient way to serve food to little ones – and they love opening up the boxes to see what is inside.  You can imagine that these mini treasure chests filled with candy jewellery were also a huge hit and the gold striped straws with feathers were also much loved by the girls.

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At the entrance I made a Neverland sign and created a dotted map line leading to a glittery red ‘X’ marks the spot with some treasure.  And then it was on to fun and games.  I have to say, no matter how hard you plan, a 5 year olds party kind of has a life of it’s own so rather than worrying too much I just largely let the activities unfold.  To kick start, the kids went on a treasure hunt to find the list of activities.  Along the way they found glittery treasure boxes with a clue and some chocolate gold.

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I created a couple of different areas for the party activities.  Pixie Hollow for face painting…

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Mermaid Lagoon where the girls had to fish for treasure in a little bubble floating on the water…

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Pirate Cove where party guests walked the plank and dug for treasure…

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Indian Camp where the girls made feather head dresses…

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and finally a good old fashioned ‘pin the tail’ game with a Neverland twist – pin Tinkerbell to Pixie Hollow…

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I was also going to do Lost Boys Hideout with a shadow game but I seriously lost the will to live by the time I got around to that so I ditched it!  There is only so much Neverland planning one woman can take!

And of course, no party is complete without cake and party bags.  I won’t bother to offer any kind of advice or professional opinion on cake decorating because as you can see I am a complete amateur.  For the party bags I made pink striped treasure bags complete with beads and feathers.

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I want to say here that no party planning would be possible without my right hand lady Sheila.  She is truly amazing and the task of planning and making a party is made so enjoyable alongside her. Together we work – one of us at the sewing machine while the other cuts out Tinkerbell, one of us up a ladder while the other is picking flowers to go in the moss.  It is a team effort and I am forever grateful for her support and love.

I would also like to make a special mention of Happier who I used for the face painting.  As you know I only like to make recommendations if I really believe in the product or service as no recommendations on this blog are paid for – but they were amazing.  The face painting was truly beautiful.  I only wished I’d captured more of it (try and host a 5 year old party and be the photographer…it’s quite a task).