Beading Party -8yr- Beaded Flip Flops
Vanda in Montreal, Quebec, Canada
For my daughters 8th birthday she wanted a beading party. Since Im a passionate beader myself, I quickly became very excited about the idea. Given that her birthday is in May and that flip-flops are the essential footwear for the summer, we decided we'd have the girls design their own funky flip-flops with assorted beads.
INVITATIONS: For the invitations, I purchased flips flops at the dollar store. I then printed two-sided invitations on colorful cardboard and cut them out in a foot shape. My daughter then decorated the invitation with small beads around it and added sparkly flower stickers to the toes. It looked really pretty. We then inserted the foot shape invitation into on flip-flop. On one side the invitation read as follows: CASSIDY'S BEADING BIRTHDAY BASH. COME DESIGN YOUR OWN FLIP FLOPS WITH ASSORTED BEADS, THEN GET A PEDICURE TO SHOW OFF YOUR FEET. ALSO, DESIGN YOUR OWN BEAD CONTEST FOR THRILLS, SO DON'T FORGET YOUR CREATIVE SKILLS! YOU'LL FLIP OVER THIS PARTY, SO YOU'VE GOT TO BEAD THERE! On the other side of the invitation, I had the rest of the party information, date, time, place, etc.. I also asked the girls to confirm their shoe size when confirming their presence.
DECORATION: My husband helped out with this. He made a big standup girl with open arms (he reproduced my daughters look, ex: color of eyes, hair color, style, etc.) out of foam core. On the girls neck, he added a 3-string beaded necklace (made out of Styrofoam balls and beads) and painted a letter on each of the Styrofoam ball to spell out Happy Birthday Cassidy. He added balloons to the girls (standup) hands and we used the standup to take pictures of Cassidy with each one of her friends as they arrived. We added additional streamers and balloons around the room, but did not over do it as the standup girl was the focal point of the room.
BEADING PROJECT: Once everyone confirmed their presence and shoe size, I purchased additional flip-flops in different colors at the dollar store and headed to the bead shop for the rest of the materials. I personally came up with my own design for the flip-flops, but if you need some ideas with how-to instructions, see: Michaels Arts & Craft website (http://www.michaels.com/art/online/search?pageNumber=1&channel=0&search=yes&keywords=flip+flops&type=0). You will find several flip-flops projects for all different skill levels. I prepared small packages with assorted beads for each girls flip flops in advance so when they were ready to start their project, all they had to do is decided of the design they wanted to make. To avoid having beads spilling all over the place, I asked the girls to carefully separate the different beads & put them into small shooter plastic glasses (which you can also purchase at the dollar store). The girls all sat together and worked on their funky flip-flops, while they chatted and listened to music. At the end, we had the girls vote on the best designs. We came up with different categories, such as, most colorful, grooviest, best beach flip flops, funniest, etc. The girls were really proud to show off their designs. While the girls were working on their project, I had someone at my house to give the girls a pedicure (they girls would take turns while working on their project). The girls then had lunch. We had a BBQ to keep it simple because of all the activities that were going on.
TREASURE HUNT: Before the girls arrived, I hid flip-flops all around the backyard. Once they arrived, I handed each girl a bag containing assorted beads and 1 flip flop. I then told them they had to find the matching flip flop to start working on their project.
GUESS HOW MANY - Fill two jars with the same amount of beads and string in each, then have the children write their name on a small piece of paper and their guess as to how many candies are in the jar. The child who guesses the right number, or comes closest, wins the jar.
BALLOON BUST RELAY - Purchase large balloons, stuff with a prize, then inflate and tie. You will need one balloon for each guest. Divide children into two teams and place each team behind the start line. At the other end of the room are the balloons. On your mark a child from each team runs to the other end of the room, grabs a balloon and sits on it, bounces on it, lays on it, anything they can do to make it pop. When the balloon pops they collect their prize and run back to their teammates. The game continues until every child has retrieved their prize. If one team falls behind parents are allowed to help: If you don't have time for a relay yell, "GO" and let every child grab a balloon at the same time and try to pop it.
GLAMOUR GIRL RELAY - This game is for 4 or more players, and should be played in an open area. To set up the game, you need: 2 backpacks/large purses, 2 teddy bears, and different accessory items, like: 2 sets of clip-on earrings, 2 necklaces of plastic beads, and 2 small hats/scarves. Put one of each item into a backpack. Divide up into two teams. On the word "go", the first player from each team puts on the backpack/picks up the purse, runs to end of the playing field, empties the backpack/purse, puts on all the accessory items, kisses the bear, removes the items, and re-packs the backpack/purse. She then runs back to her team and hands the backpack/purse to the next player who does the same. The first team to finish wins.
BEAD-DESIGNING CONTEST: Finally, I had a bead-designing contest. Instead of having a birthday cake, I decided to make the famous & delicious New York Magnolia Bakery Cupcakes (see recipe: http://foodandthoughts.blogspot.com/2005/03/imbb13-my-little-cupcake.html). I then prepared the icings (in 5 different colors) and purchased a lot of decorating gel tubes (also in different colors). I told the girls that they had to pretend that the cupcakes were beads and that they had to decorate the beads with the icings and gels. I had given them two cupcakes each to decorate, but since they enjoyed this activity so much, I gave them each additional cupcakes to decorate. Once again, at the end, I had the girls vote for the best designs. We had different categories, so I made sure that every girl won a prize, whether it was for the flip-flops contest or for the bead design contest. I took digital pictures of each category prizewinner, printed the pictures at home (I added a headline on each picture (ex: Best Beach Flip Flop)) and inserted the pictures in a small flip-flop picture frame (which I also bought at the dollar store). Then, my daughter then opened her gifts. After that, the girls were left to play together until the parents came to pick them up.
As the girls left, I handed them an organza bag with their picture frames, a flip flop toe ring and flip flop earrings. The girls beamed with pride with their new flip-flops, picture frames & prizes. The party was a hit. We even had parents calling us the following week, thanking us for having invited their kids to the party. Most importantly, the birthday girl had a wonderful time with her friends!
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