Idea No.

17758

Mermaid Party -6yr- Home Made Mermaid Costumes

Award

Date

March 2008

From

Lorraine in Mount Pearl, Newfoundland, Canada

Special Mention

Ariel Little Mermaid Party

For my daughter, Meghan's 6th birthday, we had a mermaid theme.

INVITATIONS: I had a clear helium filled balloon tied to a starfish paperweight. In the balloon there was   mother of pearl glitter, some small Ariel stickers, and the invitation itself, which had to be rolled up to fit thru the opening. The invitation said something like.. Come play with me under the sea, and be transformed into a mermaid! We will frolic and play to celebrate Meghan's 6th Birthday!..and then had the party time, date, address etc. I asked them to wear white tights and a white t-shirt.

DECORATIONS: We held the games in our family room off of the kitchen. I wanted to have it look like it was under water. I contemplated taping blue banquet cloth around the room, but it was too expensive..so I bought mistinted paint for $6.00, and I painted the room blue! I, know this isn't possible for everyone, but we were tearing down the walls to renovate, so it didn't matter. I went to some appliance stores and furniture stores and was lucky to get some really large boxes for free. I painted pictures of Ursula the sea witch, flounder, Sebastian, sea horses and various coral, starfish, shells and seaweed (all from the Little Mermaid movie) on the cardboard and then, using a carpet knife, cut them out and hung them on the walls. This took a bit of time, I'd say a couple of weeks, doing it each evening.  I already had the paints as I am a crafter, so it didn't cost me anything but my time. I downloaded Little Mermaid coloring sheets from the internet and drew a grid over it in pencil. Then using a carpenters level I drew out grids on the cardboard, on a much larger scale of course! (like a checkerboard) Then I would draw just what was in each square. Anyone can draw this way! When I was done I erased the grid lines and then painted the picture with my craft paints. I outlined it all in black marker, which gave it a cartoon look. They turned out great, well worth the time.

If this isn't an option. You could download pictures, and get them enlarged at business depot. I made ursula really big, the kids loved it! We moved all the toys and tables out of the family room, except the big t.v and computer desk, which we covered up with sandy brown sheets, the couch was already that color so it looked like the bottom of the ocean. I taped the pictures of the star fish, shells and coral reef around them in groups. I took two different green colored streamers and twisted them together, and taped various lengths of this from the floor up the wall in groups to look like seaweed. I taped all the characters on the walls as well.

I played Ariel songs that I downloaded from the net for free. I also taped blue/ tourquise streamers to the doorway down to the room, so they had to go thru it like they were going under water. Upstairs, in the living room and kitchen I decorated with blue, tourquise and purple streamers and balloon groupings. I decorated the table with blue plastic table cloths, in the center I painted three teracotta pots blue and filled them with a piece of foam and placed blue easter grass in them. I stuck suckers in the foam. I used the suckers that had the gum in them, I made octopi, crabs and clam shells: for the crabs I took red tissue paper and wrapped the tops of the suckers and taped it on the base. I drew/ cut out a crab body onto red fun foam, then pierced it with the sucker stick and pulled it up so that the round part of the sucker became the head (with googley eyes glued on)and the body(foam) was underneath. The same idea for the octopus, except I used purple tissue paper and fun foam. For the clam shells I used mother of pearl tissue paper and white fun foam, I folded a piece of foam and then cut out the clam shape, so you have two clam shapes connected in the middle. I painted the foam to look like a clam shell. Put the sucker inside to see how big you need to make it. I then hot glued halfway up the side of the shell. So it looked like the sucker part was the pearl inside the shell.

ACTIVITIES: I borrowed a Ariel vanity set from a friend and we put it in the living room. When the girls arrived they changed into their mermaid costumes, and then had their make up, body glitter and fast drying nailpolish put on.I took pictures of each child sitting on the vanity, with their tails fanned out, this was given later with the thank you notes. They then went down to play til everyone was transformed.

The costumes: the skirts were made from  sequined material in different colors. You make them like skirts, with elastic waistbands. It's made out of one piece of material(about 1 meter, depending on how tall the children are) with the join in the front.it slopes down to make the fins, the skirt is long enough that the fins can lay flat on the foor when they are standing. The tails are in the back, so they don't trip when they walk. Sequined material dosen't need to be hemmed as it dosen't fray. So I just had to sew the join and the top where the elastic went, It took no time at all to do 9 skirts. They wore white t shirts,and I made clam shell bras out of white fun foam, which I painted (in co ordinated colors)to look like clam shells. I hot glue gunned white ribbon (one long piece and two shorter pieces) so that it went on like a bikini top. The girls looked soo cute! They got to keep this costume.

Once everyone was dressed (and pictures taken), We played feed the shark. Once again I painted on a cardboard box, a picture of a shark ( the one that was in the movie) I cut out the mouth and the kids had to toss 3 fish into the mouth (they were stuffed fish, really cute, from the dollar store), who ever got all the fish in won a prize (one of the fish). The booby prize was a ring pop. We went up stairs for a craft next which was a door hanger, with peel and stick fun foam shapes (ocean theme) and glitter pens. They then went downstairs to play limbo with Little Mermaid music, the winner won a Ariel jewelry box (dollar Store). They played this until I cleaned, and set the table ( I used blue and purple plates, cups, napkins and utensils) We had pizza. Then cake and icecream. I couldn't find a mermaid cake to copy so I bought a Little Mermaid cupcake cake. From the top it looks like  regular cake, but under the frosting it is made up of cupcakes, no cutting required! There was lucky plate, cup, napkin which won different styles of Ariel Jewelry boxes. We then opened presents. I get the girls to get the present they brought and sit in a semicircle in front of the birthday girls chair. When they bring their present up they get their loot bag at that time. It's more organized, and the kids tend to stay quiet when they know they are going to get something!

The LOOT BAGS: I got clear celophane bags and put a Mermaid coloring book, Ariel stickers, jewelry (that matched their costume colors), bubbles with sea animal wands, and a  pkg of cookies. I tied it with purple, blue and turquise curley ribbon. They also got a couple of the centerpiece suckers as well as the Mermaid costumes to bring home.The girls had a wonderful time. This party was started a couple of months before her birthday to allow me a chance to paint everything. Pretty much everything was bought at the dollar store. Besides the material for the skirts, the pizza and the cake, nothing cost more than $2.00. I have four kids 8 years to 4 months (at that time) so if I can find the time to do it, it's not impossible! I hope this will inspire you!

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