Sunday, April 7, 2013

Secret of the Wings Birthday Party

Our baby turned 6 this year, 6!!Its all going by so fast!! Being the creative type yes, the Birthday Girl is the princess who designs her own dresses. ;) She didn't want just any run of the mill party!!

Let me just preface this with saying, we don't do great, big birthday parties in our family. Don't get me wrong, we make a big, huge deal about birthdays, but we don't do ginourmus, invite-everyone-you've-ever-met-destination birthday parties. I'm not putting that down, I'm just saying its not us. :) We keep our parties smaller, 6-8 kids, only the close friends she actually plays with. That can be hard, don't get me wrong. Its hard to not invite the child she used to play with but doesn't see anymore, kids of my friends that she sees once in a while, you know how it goes. Our schools are quite overcrowded, she has 35 other kids in her class so we can't invite everyone in the class. All that aside, a smaller party with close friends only just works best for us.

This, however does not mean our parties are simple, stress-free and easy on mom! :) Also, my kids tend to be somewhat ahead of the trend when it comes to parties. They don't pick a theme that is stocked in your local party store. They often don't pick a theme you can find online. Like when our son wanted the Olympic Birthday, or the year he wanted a lightening theme (lightening???) Or the year our daughter said she wanted a garden party with flowers and a fairy with brown hair. (She was turning 3 that year.) This past fall, on the heels of the release of the newest Tinkerbell movie, she announced she wanted a "Secret of the Wings" party! I was thrilled! I could just hop on down to the Party City, pick up all the party paraphernalia and be on our way!


Imagine my surprise to find nothing at the store in connection with the new movie! No Periwinkle anywhere, just standard Tinkerbell stuff! I went home and searched online. Not. A. Thing. How is this possible?? I know my child isn't the only one who adores Tinkerbell. There are party plates, cups and napkins for every other random kid television show, but nothing for the new Tinkerbell movie! I told my daughter about our predicament and she shrugged her little shoulders and said "I guess we'll make our own." So we did!

Her vision was to turn the house into the Winter Woods (the place where Periwinkle and the other frost fairies live.) While she loves Tink, she was quite taken with the newest fairy and wanted Peri and her winter wonderland to be the star here. Everything should be snowy, frosty, with blue and silver. (Seriously, no pink!?!?!? Shocking!!!) She wanted each girl to have a pair of fairy wings that sparkle, just like Tink and Peri's in the movie, and a pair of Peri's shoes. (Which are just like Tink's except that they are blue.)


Oh, and she wanted a 6 tiered cake, one for each year. The cake should be frosted in white with pale blue, shimmery snowflakes all over it. At the top of the cake, she wanted figurines of Tink and Peri, holding a snowflake, with a candle in the shape of a 6 at their feet. No, I am not kidding, this is what comes out of her brain. Let's just tackle that cake, first, shall we?

I'm not a cake decorator. I can't make a rose or even a basic border. Here's the thing. For some reason, our kids want their cakes made by me, and you know I love that. :) I can fake it for birthdays, and I'm a big fan of Cake Boss and Cupcake Wars, but people, this is not my area of giftedness. At first, when she mentioned a 6 tiered cake, I told her that was for a wedding, not a birthday. But then when she explained it was 6 tiers for a reason; one for each year of her life. Well, I appreciate that kind of creative thinking. I brought up the idea of making a big, cupcake display with 6 tiers, but she had cupcakes last year at her Pinkalicious party and she really wanted a real cake. At the suggestion of a dear friend who is a pastry chef (but who, unfortunately moved to Australia so there was no chance of her making the cake FOR me) I went to a store in town and bought 3 cake dummies for the 3 bottom tiers! Cake dummies are pieces of pre-cut styrofoam that you can decorate to look like a real cake! Ha!!! Armed with my 3 cake dummies, a recipe for marshmallow fondant, a snowflake cookie cutter and a promise from my girl that next year she would NOT ask for a 7-tiered cake I felt like I was set!! I really only had to bake a 3 tiered cake and how hard could that be?  So. . .


She was thrilled, and that's all that matters, right? Right??? (Don't mind me, I'll just be hiding under the table. Mortified.) Yikes.

On to something. . .else.

We found some wonderful cups and plates, and worked some magic with ribbon, tulle and plastic tablecloths. I snagged a bunch of those little snowflake ornaments on the after-Christmas sales and we picked up some little blue flowers and pretended they are periwinkles. The pictures, by the way are courtesy of the birthday girl herself, she's quite the budding photographer. :)

In the end of the movie, Tinkerbell arranges for flowers (periwinkles) to fall from the sky with snowflakes, naturally this was part of the vision. So with a little fishing wire, glittery snowflakes and silk flowers, we tried to make it happen. I also grabbed all her Tinkerbell dolls and hung them with fishing wire as well. I was hoping it would look like the fairies were flying around her party in a whimsical kind of way, not like "Who hung the dolls from the ceiling?" in a creepy kind of way. I'm still undecided.


Here's the finished product, complete with balloons and streamers. How do you like the step-ladder in the corner? Its the details that count. ;)


As requested, each girl got a pair of fairy wings. That sparkle, like Tinkerbells. We made them out of wire and iridescent wrap. I used this fab tutorial from the fabulous Train To Crazy blog. I am kicking myself for not getting a close up of the wings. They were pretty easy to make and just like real fairy wings, no two are alike. ;)

Periwinkle's shoes, however took some time. My first thought was to sew little slippers for each girl. But I had to do the one thing I hate to do; admit I could not do it all. Grrrr. Of course you can purchase the dress up shoes, but yikes, that can get pricey, and didn't fall under my birthday budget of less than $100. Finally we found little ankle socks. We dyed them light blue and sewed on little pom-poms we made.


One thing I do love about our birthday parties is doing all the prep work together. The kids love it, I love it and I feel like it makes the whole thing more special because its their vision and they helped realize it. It is a LOT of work, but it is so worth it. :)

The little frost fairies snacked on snowflake and butterfly shaped sandwiches, fresh fruit and the usual kid-favoured snacks. The sipped hot chocolate with whipped cream and snowflake sprinkles, and no I didn't get pictures of any of this. :)

We played games, pin the wings on the fairy. We pulled out a poster of Tink and traced her wings onto vellum, cut out the wings and ta-da! We also played "Help the Animals into the Winter Woods. In the beginning of the movie, Fawn is doing just that, so my daughter came up with the idea of a game. We used her little beenie babie typed stuffed animals, and each girl had a turn to try and toss them into a pile of snow (tulle) which represented the Winter Woods. They chatted and laughed and played and you could see all those adorable pictures if I wasn't a paranoid mama with my silly rule of no  pictures of my kids on my blog. :) So picture in your head. . .adorable kids. . .fairy wings. . .smiles. . .

As always, the most important thing is the birthday child, and  you can imagine my absolute delight when she pronounced her party "PERFECT!!" She said it was exactly what she wanted, and who can ask for more than that?



Which comes down to my big reason for posting this party. See, I don't think I'm one of those amazing moms on Pinterest that put together these amazing parties with amazing pictures that seem to come from a magazine. I'm just a normal gal who likes to sew and get creative. :) This party is not perfect, glossy and professional  no one will think I spent hundreds on a party planner. But to the birthday girl, it was perfect. The time we spent together sticking fondant snowflakes on a leaning cake, hanging flowers and fairies from the ceiling, and making pom poms for shoes was time well spent. She knows that she is not limited to what is sold in stores and that she can make anything happen. And she thought it was perfect. That's all that matters. So I decided to post this (lumpy, wilting cake and all) to encourage that mom who thinks she "isn't crafty enough" because you are. It doesn't have to be Pinterest Perfect to be a perfect. :)



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2 comments:

  1. I am still in awe!! This was a true Winter Woods festivity!! I am sure it was "Perfect"!! I am so impressed with your creativity and final results. And to think all those years I thought crepe paper draped across the ceiling and some balloons with a cake learned from a cake decorating classes was a cool birthday party! Little did I know the seed that was planted.
    :-) GREAT JOB Amy!!

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  2. Ah.. she is past the pink stage and onto grander things. This girl has style and knows what she wants!!! It's amazing to see how you can make her vision into a reality!!! Great job...

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