Vintage Carnival Party - Sand Art
Jami in Brookhaven, MS USA
Invitation: a custom two fold pocket design. The front outlined the invitation itself and a photo of my daughter in her ring master top hat. On the inside of the invitation was an admission ticket to the carnival which also served as an RSVP postcard.
Decorations: classic carnival with a flair. We chose to use softer colors rather than the traditional primary colors one expects at a carnival. We used lots of pinks, aquas and browns. All of the tables were covered in white floor length table coths then accented with runners made of coordinating fabrics. Large balloon bouquets were used to highlight main areas such as a prize table, seating area, food table etc. Upon entering the party (our back lawn), we had a ticket booth of sorts set up at the entrance. It was a small tent made of pvc pipe and pink striped fabric. Under the tent" was a table which displayed a photo of my daughter a guest book and goody bags. For the goody bags we used craft bags adorned with a vintage carnival artwork sticker that I purchased from etsy.com. In the middle of the lawn was a fairly large white tent which we rented from a local vendor. Underneath round tables and chairs were placed so adults could sit & socialize if desired. The tables were adorned with beautiful fresh flower centerpieces in clear glass containers of all shapes & sizes.
Games: Once guests were well equipped with their goody bags they entered through wooden gates into the "fairgrounds". There they found various carnival games lining the perimeter of the lawn:
-Hooptastic was a game created by my husband. He stacked flower pots which we had painted with different designs on top of eachother and secured them with a stake that was secured in the ground. The children were given three chances to toss a hoola hoop onto the stacked pots.
-Bean Bag Toss was the traditional game just a little pretty added. We made a game board of plywood & 2x4 supports with holes (three sizes) cut out of board. We then painted the board a pretty design using the theme colors. The bean bags were made of left over fabric that was used for table cloths.
-Daisy Pond was our take on Fish Pond. We used a riser made of wood that my mother uses for her Christmas village during the holidays and covered it with fabric. We then filled classic mason jars with water & let a daisy float in each one. Children were given three chances to toss a ping pong ball into one of the jars.
-Grab bag was designed for the youngest guests. We designed & decorated another game board just as mentioned above. My husband cut 4 wooden dowels to a proper length for the poles. String and clothes pins finished the poles. The bags consisted of candy and small trinkets. When a child won a carnival game they were given a ticket to be used at the prize table. There we had various prizes (all novelties from Oriental Trading) displayed in clear glass canisters with ribbons tied around them.
Activities: -There was a table set up for making sand art. We used sidewalk chalk to color table salt (much less expenive and works just as well) and refurbished baby food jars for their creations. -We hired a balloon artist to mingle with the crowd and make animals for the children. -We also hired two young ladies to sit at a table and do face painting and a caricature artist to do simple caricute designs of our guests.
Party snacks: classic carnival findings also with a twist. We of course had a cotton candy machine and popcorn machine (also rented from a local vendor). We were able to find vintage styled popcorn tubs & cotton candy sticks online which added a special touch.
The menu also included mini chicken-on-a-stick (made by a local bakery) mini corn dogs (purchased at a bulk grocery store and inserted with mini popscicle sticks) nachos served in small chinese take-out containers sprinkle cookies displayed in a very large glass canister cupcakes on a cupcake tree salt water taffy and oversized lollipops. Everything was served on glass or white serving pieces. We used a food warmer for the hot options as to prevent serving anything unappetizingly cold. Personalized bottled water was chilled and served along with a variety of Kool-Aid individual mixers.
The afternoon was one filled of laughter and fun by children and adults alike. It was sheer perfection and a memory that I know we will always cherish."
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