Irini recently turned four, and I am sad to say that we have never had a "proper" birthday party for her before. So for her fourth birthday, I went all out with a Fairy Garden Tea Party. Except that on the morning of her party, it decided to blow a gale and start raining!! So, less Garden Party, and more Tea Party! Nonetheless, the day was amazing, Irini had a great time, and by the looks of things, so did all of the other little fairies!
After starting to decorate our garden and outdoor area, it became very clear that there would be no garden party. Every decoration my dad and hubby tried to put up started to blow away. We had tablecloths trying to take flight. And then it started to rain. So with less than 2 hours before the party, and with cooking still to be done, we had to move all the furniture in our living room out, and all our party stuff in! But, in hindsight, it actually looked even better than I had imagined it would outside. Outside the front door were the four giant balloons you can see above
(moved just before the party started due to the wind) as well as two
hidden bubble machines. The effect was magical, and a lot of the girls
didn't even want to come inside! As you entered the foyer, there were masses of helium balloons, in bouquets and loose, and then a garland of leaves and roses draped in the archways to signal the entry to the party.
As the girls came in, they were each given a fairy skirt, wings, a flower clip and a wand. I made the fairy skirts (tute to follow), and the wings, clips and wands were bought from Halo Heaven. I was very impressed with them and would certainly buy from them again. The items were very affordable. For example, the wings (including international postage) came to less than $2 each but were still great quality - in fact, they were better quality than wings I saw locally for over $20 each.
On the back wall we set up the food table. Beautiful paper lanterns from Martha Stewart were hung in the windows, and the table had two large arrangements of faux cherry blossoms, and two smaller cones I made from faux flowers I bought from Spotlight.
These were so easy to make - I simply took a cone of florist foam (sometimes called Oasis) and then stuck in blossoms that I cut off bunches of faux flowers. I started with the biggest blooms first, and them added in progressively smaller ones until you couldn't see the green foam anymore. The last step was to tuck in some leaves and then they were done!
This is the food table, minus all the hot food. I tried to aim for a mix of sweet and savoury, as well as a mix of child and adult friendly food. I also tried to have some vegetarian dishes, since one of the guests was vegetarian, and some were fasting for Lent.
I made these meringue mushrooms and raspberry macarons and these disappeared in no time! The meringue mushrooms looked remarkably real and were so easy to make. The macarons tasted great, but were not so easy to make!! But not bad for my first try!!
These cakes were also a hit, and have become my go-to cake for birthdays at school because not only are they both nut AND egg-free, they are super delicious. I found the recipe here at Sweet Rosie and not only are they really yummy, they are really easy. And they look great - so what more could you want?!
I also did fruit kebabs, raspberry cream cheese love heart sandwiches, tea sandwiches, mini tartlets (sweet and savoury) and for the hot food, homemade mini quiches, pizza scrolls and sausage rolls. All the food was super yummy, and leftovers were quickly polished off by us that night!
We set up the kids' table at the front of the room. The table was set with a gorgeous floral table cloth, balloon bouquets from Spotlight, and a fresh floral arrangement that Irini picked out at the florist the day before as a special treat. Each place setting had a little bottle of "Fairy Potion", made from Golden Circle's Sunshine Punch, raspberry cordial and water. It was definitely a hit with the girls, as they all kept coming back for more! The table was rounded out with pink cups, plates and napkins, and purple plastic cutlery.
I decided to outsource the entertainment, and that was THE. BEST. DECISION. EVER! Sandie, our beautiful fairy queen from Ladybird Entertainment, was absolutely amazing! She kept the girls' attention the whole time (about 1.5 hrs) and her fairy face painting at the end was really beautiful, even if Irini did make me wipe it off immediately! She was a heap of fun, and had the dancing and laughing and even did a little bit of crafting with them.
Then, it was time for the cake! Irini let me know pretty clearly what she wanted - it had to be pink, have lots of flowers, and a tiara. So, that is what I gave her. I tucked in a few butterflies, ladybirds and toadstools as well, as a nod to the fairy garden party theme, followed by a liberal dash of edible glitter, and the cake was a pretty, sparkly, ode to little girlhood! The inside was my regular chocolate cake recipe from Peggy Porschen's book, Pretty Party Cakes, and the filling was pink coloured buttercream frosting.
Finally, it was time for the party favours. I decided against going the usually lollies and dollar shop toys, since if most parents are like me, most of the contents quickly disappear into the rubbish. Instead, the girls got to keep their fairy costumes, and I made a little gift bag with a handmade beaded bracelet, tiny bottle of "pixie dust" and little pot of homemade "fairy dust gel". Again, tute to follow!! This paired with a pink and white lollipop for that touch of candy!
And there you have Irini's Fairy Garden Party!! I hope you liked it as much as we did!!
Labels: children, entertaining, lifestyle, parties