When you pick a theme for a child’s birthday party, it can be overwhelming when you see all the things you can buy to fit the theme. All these items for a themed party can get pretty expensive if you go all out. Fortunately, there are several shortcuts you can take to create a well designed theme while keeping things simple and affordable.
Pick and Choose
When choosing your theme, remember, you can always pick and choose what items to get instead of snapping up every single item available. No matter if your theme is ‘Curious George’ or ‘The Little Mermaid’, it’s not always necessary to have your theme characters on every plate, balloon, cup, napkin, streamer, banner, and more.
Mix and Match
Themed items can be paired with plain unadorned accessories in the same general color and style. The majority of cups and plates can be in the accent colors rather than the themed image. Save your themed items for table and room decorations, the things that will be seen during the entire party, and not hidden under the pizza.
Duplicate the Decoration Theme
If you’re feeling particularly creative, trace the characters onto large white paper tablecloths, brown paper bags, poster board, or other decorations, and let the children color them in.
Getting a packet of stickers with your theme’s character is another inexpensive option. Have each child decorate the tablecloth and goodie bags with their own stickers and you double the fun, at a fraction of the price.
Choose Cheap Fun
Pinatas are a lot of fun and they are very cheap. Kids love whacking the heck out of the candy-filled party game that doubles as a decoration. You can find inexpensive Pinatas or, with a little advanced planning, you can create your own Paper Mache Pinatas. Involve your child in the creative process for even more fun.
Games don’t have to cost a fortune. A simple search online will result in tons of free printable game images and ideas. You can print off Bingo cards, mazes, coloring pages, Pin-the-Tail games, trading cards to color and swap, and so much more. Remember to choose the economy setting on your printer, using less ink and saving you even more money.
Theme the Invitations Yourself
Themed birthday invitation cards cost a bundle! However, you can find images and ideas online to create your own homemade invitations for a song. Just do a search on your child’s chosen theme character and you’re good to go. Depending on how old your child is, you can print them out in black and white and spend a day together coloring them all before delivering them. Or, you can choose to print them out on glossy paper with color to make them look more like the store bought copies.
Stickers could come in handy again. Use construction paper or other sturdy paper and write the details of the party inside, then fold and put a fun sticker of your theme character on the outside flap. Use glitter glue or other embellishments if your child likes.
Theme the Birthday Cake Yourself
When it comes to the birthday cake, you can go all out with a bakery-made themed cake if that’s where your heart is, or you can save money by creating your own. Again, put your computer to work printing off an image of the theme character or characters. Then, you can create a scene on top of a plain cake frosted in complimentary colors by making cut-outs of the images you printed out and arranging them around the top of the cake.
You can buy a plain pre-made cake, or a cake mix made at home, or a cake made from scratch, if you want to skip the expense of the bakery. A simple rectangular cake works well, is easy to frost, cut and serve, and goes a long way. Again, kids will be happy just to have a piece of cake, or two, to eat, so don’t worry about getting it perfect. Be creative, use cut-outs and colors to match the themed characters, and the result will be more than perfect… it will be fun!
With a little creativity and planning, you can host the perfect themed birthday party for your special little one, no matter how small the budget. Use your imagination and you can’t go wrong.