Challenger – Frog Prince Paperie
Plant a Seed
I really enjoyed working on this $100 design challengeproject – scaling back the budget meant the creativity had to get kicked up! Inthis party design meant to “go green,” I decided to use an earth-friendly“plant a seed” theme for a child’s birthday where most of the materials were foundaround the house, recycled, or reusable. And to put me on a level playing fieldwith all the moms out there that might want to try this at home, I did thisparty at grandma’s house – well away from my overflowing prop closet. I pulled off this party for four for awhopping $58!! You could add more kids to this concept for well under $100.
The design work I did for this party was done in such a waythat anyone could do it; I used a free font from the internet and kept it totext and a piece single leaf art. All the signs, etc. could be created insomething as simple as a Word document.
Grandpa’s garden was the perfect backdrop for this party.Mid-summer (and 97 degrees!) meant for nice lush green surroundings. We set apatio table in the hosta alcove under the Japanese maple trees to create asense of intimacy. Little orange garlands hung from the trees for a pop ofcolor. The table was set with a plain white tablecloth (free), and to add alittle more interest, I made runners from brown craft paper (from the dollarstore) and finished the edges with pinking shears.
Sheets of scrapbook paper served as placemats (29 cents asheet). To give them some style, I used an exacto knife to cut leaf shapes fromthe paper and then layered a contrasting green underneath. I used plain whiteplates that were on hand – I prefer to use porcelain to paper whenever I canfor less waste, and decent plates can be had at the dollar store if you needlots that can be used again and again.
One of my favorite touches was the napkins on the placesettings. I bought plain white napkins (dollar store) and using a few greenones from an old party that were on hand, made ruffles and sewed them to thewhite napkins for instant drama. This was an extremely inexpensive way to get avery designer look.
The children loved the little terra cotta pots at eachsetting. I picked these up on sale at Micheals and handmade the paper flowersthat went in each, using corn cob skewers as the stems and Styrofoam from andelectronics purchase as the base. Silverware (“gardening tools”) sat on top ofeach pot tied with jute and a name tag.
The birthday cake made for a perfect centerpiece, andsurprisingly, there were no little finger prints in it until it was time to cutthe cake! I used a box cake and canned frosting. The decoration were leavestaped to skewers and artfully arranged. The cake stand was my mother’s.
The cups tied with twine for lemonade were set to the sidewith a new watering can ($3) as the pitcher. I used old jam jars that were inmy mother’s cupboard. The frog prince paid a visit there as well.
In the name of all things recycled, we used an old armyfield table to display the food for the kids’ party. PB&J (crustless)wrapped in parchment, skewered grapes, recipe red strawberries, paper coneswith Pirate Booty, and “dirt” pots fill of worms were served. All the containers were either on handor picked up at the local thrift store. A tiny sewn bunting stretched acrossthe front of the table and big paper flowers in orange and leaf green set inrecycled tin cans adorned the table as décor.
For favors, I took several marigolds from dad’s garden thathad gone to seed and dried and separated them. I sewed the edges of ¼ pageprints that I made to form a seed envelope. The children took these, theirplace setting pots, and party activity home as a treat from the party.
To keep the kids occupied, we planted marigold seeds inrecycled yogurt cups. My father, a master gardener, showed the kids how toplant that particular kind of seed. Afterwards, he treated them to tractorrides around the neighborhood. (I think this was the favorite part of the day!)
The kids had a really great time, and I think the bestcompliment I received was from Gracie who said she wanted a “plant a seed” birthdaywhen hers came around!
This was so much fun, and I must thank grandma, grandpa, thekids and all the others that helped with the staging of this party. And thankyou to Ebony for inviting me to be part of your challenge!
|terra cotta pots||$5.68|
|berry basket (thrift)||$0.50|
|basket for pots (thrift)||$1.00|
|Double stick tape||$0.75|
|Items we had:|
|army field table|
|riding lawnmower & cart|
|Recycled tin cans|
|Recycled plastic cups|
|Foam from electronics purchase|
|Marigold seeds from garden|
Grand Total $58!