My daughter, Claire, is going to be four this week. Four!
We are moving in just a few short weeks, so we decided to have her birthday party a little early to alleviate some stress. Because even fun, birthday party stress is still stress.
My mom was able to come visit for a few days, and she helped me so much with prepping for the party! We really missed my dad, who is deployed right now, but hopefully he’ll get to be here next year for Claire’s 5th birthday.
Claire has been talking about having a Disney Princess birthday party for…well, since her last birthday. 🙂 This year was the first year we let her invite friends over, so I wanted to make things really fun and special for her. I think we were successful, despite my concerns about having over 20 people in my small home!
I’ll walk you through what we did to make this event so great!
**Disclaimer: Yeah, this post does have affiliate links. But only to the coolest stuff! I purchased many of these things myself for this party. Thanks for supporting This Blue Dress!
My daughter is crazy about dressing up, so it was only fitting to have a costume party! When we sent out invitations, we included a piece of paper asking our friends to wear Disney costumes or attire. (I kept a few of our princess dresses on hand in case anyone needed to borrow one for the party.) Oh. My. Goodness. When these kids arrived in their little costumes, I just melted! Costumes included Belle, Elena, Moana, a knight/frog, Prince Adam, and Prince Charming.
Some of the adults dressed up too, per Claire’s request. My mother-in-law was Merida, my mom was Cinderella, and I was Elena. I even made an Elena hair accessory so I’d look more the part.
We scheduled the party from 9:30-11. The idea was to let everyone keep most of their Saturday and also allow me to keep refreshments simple since the party would be in between meal times.
The cake…yeah. The cake. Long story short, I tried to make one of those beautiful mirror cakes, but I didn’t let the marbled glaze cool enough, and it ended in a big mess. So we served cupcakes. They were yellow to represent Belle, and had Ariel and Rapunzel cupcake picks in them. I was going to top the yellow cupcakes with these pretty red icing roses, but I ended up going with the cupcake picks since they were included with the liners I had purchased.
Later in the week, I made this little cake for Claire to have on her real birthday.
I bought little ice cream cups so I could have more time to focus on the guests instead of scooping tons of ice cream. Plus, it meant less trash.
We also served Elena’s Taquitos and Chips (with a picture of Belle and Chip on the label). Of course, we had cute Princess napkins and pink and purple plates for the food.
For drinks, we had Moana’s Ocean Water (blue Hawaiian Punch). Simple, simple, but still delicious.
My goal for the decor was to represent as many Disney Princesses as possible while still looking cohesive. I chose purple, blue, and pink for the main colors, and added pops of gold here and there.
It’s tradition in our family to make a big birthday number to hang on the wall. Since Claire’s favorite princess is Ariel, we made an Ariel-inspired number four. I drew a four on poster board, painted it with glue, then added fine purple glitter. After the glue dried, I cut out the four. Then I used a scalloped circle punch (I use this ALL the time!) on lavender paper. I cut each circle in half to make them look more seashell flair.
I carefully glued the half circles to the edge of the four with the scalloped sides facing out and the flat sides to the inside. As soon as I was done bordering the four with those, I painted three seashells green. I dabbed a little blue paint on them as well to give the shells a little more depth. Using green netting fabric, I made a bow and tied it with metallic gold ribbon. Then I hot glued the seashells and a pearl in the center of the bow.
I attached the embellishment to the four, and our number was complete!
Above the four, I pinned a long piece of the gold ribbon and attached pictures of Claire to it using glittered clothespins.
Each picture was of my daughter in a different princess costume. We had had a super fun time doing that silly photo shoot, even with my non-professional photo skills. It added a sweet, personal touch to the decor. Here are a couple of my favorites:
I wanted a statement piece above the refreshment table. But as cool as a Cinderella carriage table or a cascading snowflake chandelier would have been, it just wasn’t something my budget allowed. So I went with a balloon arch, using two multi-colored packs of 20 balloons (the pinks, purple, and white one), about 8 blue balloons, and three clear balloons that I filled with gold glitter.
I blew up about 28 large balloons, and then made the rest of balloons various small sizes. I tied the ends of two large balloons together, and then did the same to two other large balloons. Then twisted the four balloons together. After that, I carefully sewed three or four smaller balloons to the cluster of four (Sew through the ties- be careful not to pop your balloons!). That counted as one cluster. Once I made seven more clusters, I attached them all together by sewing straight through the middle ties in each cluster. You’ll want to pull tight and evenly to secure the balloons and prevent sagging thread, but not so tight that the balloons pop.
Before hanging the arch, my mom and my husband twisted crepe paper from the ceiling to floor to make a cute and easy backdrop. Then, using four small command hooks and a little more thread, we secured the arch to the wall. I loved seeing my daughter’s face when she saw all the balloons the next morning!
I purchased a little floral garland to wrap around the balloons in the arch, but it turned out to be too heavy. So my mom suggested that I pair it with some “Cinderella” material I had picked up at Goodwill, and we dressed up my back doors with it. It added so much to the room!
There were some items on the refreshment table that represented several Disney Princess: paper lanterns for Rapunzel (a great and FREE printable from As the Bunny Hops!), a mirror and roses for Belle, seashells and a treasure chest for Ariel, and a fan for Mulan. The cupcake stand had seven princess figurines.
My husband moved our mirrors over to our new house already, so I had a huge wall space to fill. I grabbed this Anna and Elsa five-piece backdrop kit (Look familiar from our Frozen Birthday Party?), and it was perfect. Cheap, huge, pretty, princessy. Here’s what the biggest wall hangings look like:
I originally wanted to hang pretty Disney Princess silhouettes somewhere, but I didn’t think my printer had enough colored ink to do the job. But I thought I’d link these free, pretty silhouettes made by Over the Big Moon in case you want to print them for your party or for a little girl’s room!
Games & Activities
Upon arrival, all the young guests received a little tiara or prince crown to wear at the party and keep. Then I took their picture in front of a huge Disney Princess backdrop. I loved this backdrop because it had six princesses on it, took up a lot of wall space, and came with 10 paper props. It was totally worth the money! We had so much fun with it, and it was a great thing to do while waiting on all the guests to arrive and before everyone left. The Cinderella slipper and the Beauty and the Beast Rose were the most popular props. Another great option is this cool backdrop that you can personalize with your child’s name and has all the Official Disney Princesses on it.
Defeat the Huns
Our first game was “Defeat the Huns”. To make this game, my husband used an Exacto blade to carve the top of two project boards to look like mountaintops. He also cut out several large holes in different parts of the “mountains”.
To play the game, my husband put the two project boards and put them side by side to look like a long mountain pass. He sat behind the boards and held a Shan-Yu puppet behind one of the holes.
The kids took turns using a marshmallow shooter (dressed up like a Chinese cannon) to shoot marshmallow “snowballs” at the Hun. Once the Shan-Yu was hit, my husband would move him behind a different hole for the next kid to hit. The kids loved it, and they enjoyed diving after the marshmallows on the floor, too.
I was going to fill a balloon drop with white balloons for Mulan’s “avalanche” to end the game, but we just needed to simplify things.
Cross the Bayou
Basically, this game is a Princess Tiana-themed cake walk. To prep for the game, I made 10 lily pads out of construction paper and labeled them 1-10.
Then I laminated them for added strength. In a bowl, I put little pieces of paper numbered 1-10. I also set up a Disney Princess playlist using songs I had purchased from Amazon in the past.
My playlist included:
“Almost There” from Princess and the Frog
“A Whole New World” from Aladdin
“How Far I’ll Go” from Moana
“The Magic Within You” from Elena of Avalor
“A Dream is a Wish Your Heart Makes” from Cinderella
“Let It Go” from Frozen
“Part of Your World” from The Little Mermaid
“Reflection” from Mulan
“Belle” from Beauty and the Beast
I kept this playlist for when my girls want to dress up and dance, and I’ll use it on our next road trip! I highly recommend buying the Disney Princess: Fairy Tale Songs CD because it is way cheaper than buying all these songs individually, and it comes with the MP3 files for free. I wish I had gone that route, because most of the songs on my playlist are on that cd, and I would’ve gotten more bang for my buck.
When it was time to play the game, I put the lily pads in a circle and told the kids to hop from lily pad to lily pad while music was playing. When the music stopped, the kids froze on the lily pad they were on. I drew a number from a bowl, and the child that stood on that lily pad number won a prize. I made these little “Frog Kisses” (Hershey’s Kisses) for the prize.
The number went back into the bowl, and we repeated this until all the kids got a prize. If a child “won” again, we just drew another number.
There are many ways you can adapt this game for different princesses! For Ariel, you can jump on numbered bubbles and pass out a Swedish Fish favor. For Jasmine, try making numbered magic carpets and offer Ring Pop “jewels” as a prize. You can make Pocahontas leaves and have a Skittles or M&M’s prize to represent the “Colors of the Wind”. If you want to do a traditional cake walk where the prize is a mini cake (like Little Debbie Cakes), print off Aurora’s funny 16th birthday cake on 10 sheets of paper for the kids to walk on. You get the idea.
All Tangled Up!
Our friends had a blast playing this Tangled game from Julie and James Paquette! We split the kids into pairs, and then they each got a turn to tangle and be tangled.
After we played games and ate, we opened presents and took more pictures by the backdrop. We had so much fun!
We’ll leave the decorations up all week, and the house will be ready for Claire’s real birthday!
I hope these ideas help you throw an amazing Disney Princess party!