Idea No.


In the Night Garden 1yr - Seeds and a Pot



January 2009


Lee-Ann in Perth WA Australia

Special Mention

Garden Party

With a bit of help from my friends I created a fantastic first birthday party for my twin girls with the theme of In the Night Garden - a huge hit in the Uk and Australia.  Http:// if you haven't heard of it. Although it was basically a garden themed party.  The girls were the youngest at the party so really it was geared to cater to my four year old, his friends and cousins.

The Invitations We took photos of the girls in individual terracotta pots and made a montage of different pictures from the night garden and superimposed them into the garden scene.  It was titled..Look how we've grown in the night garden.  The party was held at a small community center around the corner from our house (I supplied a map on the back of the invite) It was photo printed, mounted on card, embellished with diamontes and had a magnet on the back to hang on fridge. 

Decorations This was the fun part!  The table was set with green cloth and green cups with big white daisy's I punched out from white contact and stuck on.  I cut large white daisy's from paper as place mats and placed yellow plates on top with pink and purple forks and spoons wrapped with green napkins tied with ribbon.  Each place setting had a small terracotta pot tied with ribbon, a bag of potting mix , small packet of seeds, a multicolored round lolly pop backed with a colored card daisy and taped to a long coffee stirrer with a message To celebrate the first birthday of our two beautiful blue eyed girls, plant these blue star flowers with love. I had pots of white gerberas down the middle of the table and gave them to grandparents and aunties after.  I also decorated hot pink plastic pots with different sized foam flowers and filled them with marshmallows, potato chips, colored pop corn and other snacks on a card table.   

There were streamers with card daisies stapled along them and hung around the room and a big handmade pinata in the shape of a flower- I covered it in newspaper and flour glue, then once dry painted it yellow and wrapped layers of fringed crepe paper around it. Then I made big colorful cardboard petals, stapled it onto a strip of yellow card and attached around flower and added big eyes and a smile.  It looked great! 

Activities It was a very hot day so inside I had tables set up with different activities.  In keeping with the theme there were Makka Pakka Pet Rocks to decorate with googley eyes, glittery flowers and ribbons, Upsie Daisy Door hangers (I found some cheap wooden flower in a pot and rocket cutouts that they could paint and after they dried I wrote  "___"'s Room on them) there was green play dough with flower cutters and coloring in sheets with the main characters from the tv show. 

Games Outside there was free play bubbles with large wands and big bubble sticks in buckets and organized games included Tombliboo sack races and throwing daisy bean bags into coloured pots.  We had a life size Makka Pakka made by a sign writer and the kids took turns throwing sponges at him!  We also played musical flowers and as each child got out they had a photo taken in Iggle Piggle's boat  we set up a photo shoot area - a black backdrop with stars attached, blue plastic sheets for water and a little wooden boat. They received their photo later with their thank you card.  

Snacks The children sat to eat and we ate homemade mini quiches and meat pies with flower shaped pastry cases, flower shaped sandwiches and fairy bread, sausage rolls, flower shaped mini pizzas, meatballs, hot chips and we had a sausage in a roll for the adults.  There is a carousel in the night garden so I made a carousel with two round wooden cutouts, toilet rolls wrapped in card in the middle of each as the pillars and topped with a cardboard roof and used it to display the mini cupcakes.  There were iced biscuits with flowers made from m&m's, mini meringues with small sugar flowers, Ikea also sell cookies in shape of flowers so I iced them together with a coffee stirrer in between and iced one side so they stood in small cups like bunches of flowers and mini cupcakes with a variety of flower decorations.  Kids juice drink boxes were housed in ice in small wheelbarrows borrowed from friends and we also walked around with a watering can decorated with ribbons and colorful paper cutout daisy's pouring adults fruit punch. 

Cake  Oh boy  what a challenge, I decided to make two cakes so the girls had one each and made an Upsie Daisy using royal white icing and an Iggle Piggle using fluffy frosting.  I had them on a cake board covered with paper that looked like grass and topped it with clear cellophane.  I used firm card cut in daisy shapes and wrote Happy 1st Birthday .. And .. One word on each flower.  I  put their no 1 candle in a cupcake next to the flowers.  

Favors we made beautiful thank you bags with two flowers, the girls faces in each one and their hand prints as leaves and just wrote Thank you / names/ date.  It was handed out before we broke the pinata so the children had somewhere to put all their loot, it also carried their pet rock, door hanger and flower pot from the table.  I also popped in ladybird chocolates, color-in sheets and balloons in the bag.  For the little ones I made a sock, bib and singlet bouquet they were rolled, attached to a wire stem, then wrapped with green tissue paper and finished off with florist tape.  I set up a table with 2 large square picture frames from Ikea and in each made a scrapbook type of collage of each child with their name, foot and hand prints, photos and birthday invite. 

Everyone then wrote messages to the birthday girl on the large surrounding matt and they have them  hanging in their room as a reminder of their special day!    One other special thing I set up were two black plastic flower pots with hot pink plastic lining and a large toy flower attached to each with a sign saying...........'s time capsule.  On the invite everyone was asked to bring something to contribute to the girls capsule which they can open on their 21st birthday.  Most people only brought one item so it's now a joint capsule!  But it was really poignant for the grand and great grand parents ..........20 years is a long time and they wrote the girls some beautiful letters just in case they are not there when they open it.  We really had a great day and the birthday girls were beautifully behaved.  They are not walking yet so were held for most of the party and were quite awed by all the colorful displays.  The party ran from 10.30am - 1.00pm and was well worth the effort.

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