Whenever I begin to plan a party, the first thing I do is go to Pinterest and create a board to help give me ideas that go along with my vision. I knew I wanted to go with a Circus/Carnival theme but I was not exactly how to make it all come together. *All of the following images were found on www.pinterest.com
The 1st thing I decided on was the colors! I decided to go with red, blue, yellow and a touch of black & white. I love the look of the pictures below.
Next I had to decide on invitations. I found these cute vintage circus ones on Pinterest that were available on Etsy (on the left). I was going to order them but then one of my talented girlfriends said she could totally make them (on the right). Didn't they turn out AMAZING! If you need custom invitations contact firstname.lastname@example.org
As I began to think about the decorations the 2 thing I knew for sure were that I wanted to #1 use balloons as the majority of the decoration and #2 add touches of red & white stripes. Balloons are simple, inexpensive and definitely get across the circus theme. Plus what 1 year old does not love balloons? I also like the red & white stripe idea because it gives the whole "circus tent" feel when you see it. After exploring Pinterest, I knew I wanted a balloon arch and to definitely incorporate the whole balloon inside of a balloon. I also decided that I wanted to some how use red and white stripe material on the tables.
I love the use of signage. I think it is so cute when a party has signs that go along with the theme. It gives a very custom look to everything and in my opinion it is the little touches that make the party!
I also thought a photo booth with carnival/circus inspired props would be super cute! I found tons of great pictures for inspiration. And a bowl of clown noses is a must have!
I am a party banner nut! I make banners with my Circut for play-dates so you know I am going to have at least 2 banners at my daughters birthday! I found so many adorable circus themed banners on Etsy! My mom (who is my party planning side-kick) happened to find a cute circus themed fabric banner too. so of course we added that on the list of DIY projects haha.
I also love the idea of sitting around "embellished" circus animals. Why have a plain elephant when you can have an elephant with a party hat and neck collar on lol!
I always have a hard time deciding on paper goods. I was going to just go with red & white polka dot plates and napkins but then I stumbled across these at Oriental Trading Co I fell in love & ordered them immediately! They not only have my colors (red, blue, yellow, black, white) but they have a vintage touch to them that I adore.
Coming up with food for a Circus party is easy! I actually found wayy to many ideas of fun circus treats to serve. So far I want to serve corn dogs, hot dogs, sliders, popcorn, cracker jacks & then I may need to incorporate some fruit & veggies for our more health conscious guests (maybe a vegetable clown face?)
There are so many fun sweet treats that can be served at a Circus party! I am one of those people who want to try it all so I am having a really hard time narrowing down the dessert menu for this birthday bash. A few of my personal favorite circus sweets are cotton candy & caramel apples so those are a must. But then of course you have to have circus cookies, marshmallow clowns, magician wands in the colors of the party!!!
There are so many cute circus cake ideas out there! I think I have decided that I do want the cake to look like a tent! And I am going to keep it small because I plan on having a table of sweets. From experiences in the past I have learned to scale down the cake when serving a variety of other treats.
I decided to give me self a little break at this party and instead of having to come up with games for the kids I am just going to hire a clown to come and entertain! But I still do want to have a little coloring/craft area so I found these adorable print-outs that I am going to use and who knows maybe some puff ball clown faces as well
If you have been to any of my party's then you know I always have a sign-in table with a book for the guests to sign. I love finding a book that goes along with the theme. My mom had the most adorable personalized circus book made on Etsy for the sign-in table! It is sooo cute and goes perfectly with the party!
I was trying to think of what would be a cute party favor for all of the guests and I fell in love with the idea of letting everyone scoop themselves a bag of peanuts in a little bag! I then decided on circus animal crackers for the kids because my little ones are not fans of nuts quite yet.
The Birthday girl has to be decked out and accessorized for her big day. I am obsessed with this adorable circus inspired tutu and personalized top I found on Esty!!! You can bet your bottom dollar that I ordered this for the birthday girl!!!!
Well...there you have it! My inspiration board for Julianna's 1st Circus Birthday Party. It has not been easy planning a party with an (almost) 1 year old & high energy 2 year! I am keeping my fingers crossed that it turns out cute and that all of our little guests have blast clowning around. I will be sure to post the after pictures next week so stay tuned...
I hope you enjoyed the show!