17 April 2013

Carnival Party Prep and Printables

It's official; my baby turned five yesterday. The carnival party I have been preparing since January is mere days away and the forecast is not looking good for the weekend. The drought broke a week too early for my liking and I am trying not to panic.
In the meantime I am consoling myself with the wonderfulness I have created for Scrag's 5th birthday and hoping the weatherman will be proved wrong... again.

Here's what I've got so far...

Carnival Drinks
I designed the labels in Photoshop to jazz up the Home Brand "jolly drinks" we'll be using for the Hoopla (the game where you throw a hoop to try and win a drink).

The homebrand drinks are blessed with labels which peel right off. Scrag was my label-peeler (I like to get the kids to help with their party prep), while I did the cutting and sticking. A glue stick works perfectly.

(Don't worry about all those nasties in the jolly drinks. I'll also be providing homemade lemonade, "sold" from my rustic lemonade stand. The cups will be "bottomless" - keep the cup and get free refills. The colourful chemical concoctions are just for a bit of fun. And hey, it's a carnival!)

Perhaps it's a little detail which most people wouldn't bother with, but to me it's the little things that make it special. And cos I love you, here are the printable labels for you to use at your carnival party... 

[right click to save to your computer, then print, trim, stick and enjoy!]

Ribbon Chandelier
This is something I spotted on Pinterest and decided to try and make.
I couldn't for the life of me find any simple rings or hoops to use for the frame, until I found this doggy frisbee in the Dollar Store...

You can see from this picture (above) how simple it is to make. Colourful ribbons cut to roughly the same length (bought from my favourite Emporium, Geoffs for around .40c/metre). Double sided tape stuck to the underside. Ribbons pressed on. Done. Construction time, around 20 minutes (my kind of craft).

What this picture doesn't show is that some of the heavier ribbons started to drop off after being hung up for a while; I remedied this by applying another layer of tape on top. No more drop-offs = brilliant.

I love how it looks. Even on a dull showery day, this gorgeous thing will brighten up it's corner...

Lucky Dip Bags
I found these nice plain brown bags for the "Lucky Dip" over at PopRoc parties for .25c each.
My lovely friend Meg offered to help me jazz them up with her carnival stamp collection, and I absolutely love the result...

Meg tells me the stamps were a K-Mart find...

See how the letters stick onto the acrylic, so you can form your own words...? Brilliant.

Me and Meg were a bag-stamping machine...

We stamped thirty bags in three different styles in around 40 minutes.
Later in the afternoon me and the kids filled the bags with a toys and sweets; flags for girls, clowns for boys and circus tents for dairy free (no chocolate).
Again, for me it's those little touches which make a party special. Call me nuts, but I love it.

[photos by Meg]

Carnival Signs
Now we come to the signage. You know I've already created my vintage signs using testpots and ripped-up decking, but I've also created printable signs which display how many tickets to play the game/do the activity and how many tickets they will win.

I bought a giant roll of 2000 carnival tickets for the party; when the guests arrive they will receive a strip of 10 tickets to get them started; everything costs tickets, including the candy floss, face painting and goodies. They play more games to win more tickets to spend on treats and prizes. Since the whole family is invited, mummy and daddy can help the little ones play. 

[To display the signs, stick onto cardboard, pin onto a wooden dowel and then pop into a plastic cone]

My helpers manning the stalls are the big brothers and sisters of our little party guests, as well as a bunch of parents. It will be a really fun family afternoon (if the rain will just hold off for two hours!)

Here are some of the signs which you can take and print and use at your own carnival party. They are set up on A4, ready to print. Simply right-click to save to your computer, then print them out, stick them onto cardboard, attach them to a stick and prop them up in a road cone. (At least that's what I'll be doing.)

The Invitation(s)
I really have gone a little overboard with this party, and designed two invitations.
Well, actually one is the invitation, with all the party information, featuring Scrag as a clown.
The other is The Ticket.
I bought some wonderful vintage carnival tickets from a lovely lady from "Lisa's Craft Shoppe" on Etsy, and she "threw in" this amazing graphic of a vintage carnival ticket from the 1940's.

(Lisa is awesome; if you are planning a carnival party you should totally contact her; she put together a special package for me and threw in loads of freebies. She even skyped me so she could get a feel of what I was after. Such a lovely lady! I totally recommend her.)

[the original ticket]

I took it into Photoshop and painstaking changed the details, so that it became the entry ticket for each family to Scrag's Birthday Carnival. Each guest received their invitation printed on a magnet, as well as their ticket, addressed to "The Jones family" "the Howard Family" etc...

[my doctored version]

We will be turning our playhouse into the ticket booth, which will be manned by Miss Fab (the Carnival Fairy)...

Meanwhile, the actual personalised Carnival invitation is available from my Etsy Shop... I personalise it with your child's photo, turning them into a clown (various clown styles and size options are available).


Get the Carnival Invitation here

Whew. So that's that. I sit here typing while the rain falls down. The farmers are happy but me, not so much. I am just hoping (and praying) that there will be a break in the weather long enough for our carnival party to be all we have dreamed, planned and worked for it to be.

I overheard Scrag saying yesterday, "I KNOW I will have a sunny day for my party, cos I prayed!"
The faith of a child. Come on God, are you listening? I hope so!

Scrag is such a sweet boy. I have not a single regret over working so long and hard to celebrate his special 5th birthday. Last night we sat down to Scrag's fave birthday dinner (macaroni cheese), Daddy gave thanks for the meal then asked our birthday boy if he wanted to pray too.
This is what he said...
"Dear Jesus, Thankyou for all my mummy's hard work work for my party and I pray that I can help her more... Amen!"

Awwwwwww. What a sweetheart.
So come on God, just one puff of your breath can push those clouds along faster and get us to sunny skies. Just for a day. Then it can rain all it wants.

Happy Birthday Sweet Scrag.
Five Years Old

~~~~UPDATE~~~~ Great news! We have secured an alternate venue for the party on Saturday - our local kindy, just around the corner! Loads of space under cover for carnival games and stalls and the bouncy castle is an all-weather covered one... so YAY! Stressing time is over; now on with the show...

More Carnival Party Stuff

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