Jillian in Pompton Plains, NJ, USA
Photo Party Invitations: Take a snapshot of the birthday girl holding a sign that says, "It's my birthday!". Then, include with the snapshot a piece of paper that includes the instructions of the party on funky paper that you can find at office supply stores. You can say, "It's ___'s __th Birthday! Come to our house, _______, at _____ on ____ for a night of picture-loving fun! You can be picked up at _____. Please RSVP by ____ (___-___-____). Also, please bring pictures of yourself to the party for an activity." Just fold up the paper and the snapshot into an envelope (if you have a big picture or one that doesn't bend easily, just put it all into a manilla enevlope. There are smaller sizes that you can buy at office supply stores). Decorations: You can hang pictures of the birthday girl and her friends around the house. On the main table where people will be eating, you can put flash cameras. Explain that if anybody sees any memorable moments at the party that they should take a picture of it, and then the birthday girl will develop the pictures after the party. You can also have a main color theme, such as pink and green, and get utensils, tableware, balloons, streamers, etc. in those colors. Food: You can have the regular party food-pizza, snacks, soda, etc. But for the cake, I recommend getting a picture cake. At some bakeries, you can give them a picture and they will transfer it onto a cake (and yes, it is edible). Or, you could make a cake that looks like a camera, using dark (chocolate) frosting and light (vanilla) frosting for the lens, shutter, etc. of the camera. Activities: If you have a camera where the picture slides out when you take the picture (I think it's called a polaroid camera?), take a picture of people's eyes when they come. This will be used for an activity later. You can also use a digital camera and upload and print pictures out on your computer. If you can't do that activity, then you can just skip it and go onto the next one. Before the party, take pictures of common household items, such as a fork, an orange, a computer, a pen, a can of soup, etc., but make it very close up so it's hard to tell what the item is. Lay the pictures out in front of everyone and give everyone a pen and a piece of paper. Give them 3 minutes to write down what they think each item is. Whoever gets the most right wins! By the way, I don't recommend doing prizes. It may seem cool to win something but people may feel left out, especially if it's a cool prize. So I think it's just best to stay away from them. After that, you can eat your pizza, open your presents, and have your cake. After that, you can go on to the scrapbooking activity. Before the party, go to a craft store and find inexpensive paper, stickers, and scrapbooks. If you can't find any cheap scrapbooks, you could always use sketchbooks or notepads and paste the pretty paper onto the paper inside the sketch/notebook. Have your guests create a scrapbook page using the pictures that they used. If you have any other craft items at home, such as ribbon, sparkles, or markers, let your guests use them too. In addition to that scrapbook page, you can make a Friend Scrapbook Page. Take a picture of all of your guests at the party. Have your guests leave room for the picture (which you will include in the thank you card) and have each guest write something about you in your page. When your guests receive the thank you note with the picture, they can glue the picture right into the page. After that, they can go onto the activity that included taking pictures of people's eyes. Again, lay out the pictures in front of everyone and give everyone a pen and a piece of paper. Give them 2 minutes to write down whos eyes they think are whose, but don't let them look at anyone's eyes while they are trying to figure out whose are whose. The person who gets the most guesses right, wins! After this, you can have a Photo Session. Hang up a colored sheet on a wall and have some dress up clothes available. You don't have to go out and buy any clothes, you can just use your clothes and clothes from your family. You mite, however, want to go to a party store and get boas and big, silly glasses. Have a member of your family take pictures of people dressed up in front of the curtain. If you have a polaroid (?) camera or a digital camera and can have the pictures ready in an instant, you can make a scrapbook page of this, too. Another activity would be to take a picuture of something, cut it up into puzzle pieces, and see how fast the guests can put the puzzle back together. The final activity would be to hand out random magazines to each guest. Give each guest a famous celebrity, such as Orlando Bloom, Britney Spears, or Jessica Simpson. Each guest has to look through their magazine and try to find pictures of their celebrity. Whichever guest found the most celebrities in their magazine after 5 or 10 minutes wins! Goody Bags: You can put flash cameras and extra scrapbooking supplies into goody bags. Also, you could include tiny camera keychains if you happen to find them. Helpful Hints: Try not to plan out your whole party minute by minute. Sometimes guests will go through an activity slower or faster than you planned and sometimes they may want to do an activity again! I hope my ideas helped you! Have a fun Photo Party!