Wednesday, May 16, 2012

What I Made Wednesday {A Harry Potter Birthday Party: The Invitations}

Turning a decade-old, we wanted our son's birthday party to be the best we've ever planned. Since our son turned 1, Super Hubby and I have always had the birthday parties at our home, all themed-out and over-the-top. It was almost considered a badge of honor to have not succumbed to the easier route of Chuck E. Cheese, bowling, or American Bouncers. After all, considering the time and effort we've put into these parties over the past decade, I don't poo-poo the off site concept I'm not judging, people, but going the route we've gone over the years, we're either crazy-nuts, have too much time on our hands, or both. I will say, the party planning is a collaborative effort and really brings the three of us close together. (Please note: I do not recommend family party-planning for the novice; can be extremely stressful.)

We've built a castle with working drawbridge for our son's Knight Party. We've had Darth Vader emerge from the opening garage, white fog smoke and all, ready to battle each Jedi at our Star Wars party. We take this party thing very seriously and Harry Potter was the theme our son chose to celebrate a decade. Oh, the possibilities made me tingle!!!!!

This party took several months to plan and the amount of pictures we have of the whole process and party are overwhelming. Therefore, I'll be breaking down the W.I.M. Wednesday posts over the next several weeks to make it more manageable and to help keep me sane. I know what you're thinking. After a party like this you're questioning my sanity, regardless, I know.
Week 1: The Invitations

All in the details: green ink is key!
As with all parties, the mood, the ambiance, the excitement and anticipation begins with the invitation. This is the catalyst to sparking a great party. The tone is set by your guest request so make it a good one.
As you are aware, there are 4 houses at Hogwarts: Gryffindor, Slytherin, Hufflepuff, and Ravenclaw. Therefore, the number of guests you invite have to be a multiple of 4 or the houses won't be even in number. This, of course, posed a problem for us as the number of people we wanted to invite didn't follow the multiple of 4 rule, and we are limited in space. If we invited 10 (the rule has always been my son can invite as many people as he is old), it would have pushed the limits of our space, but it could be done. However, if we invited 12, a multiple of 4, there was no way it was going to happen without the constant violation of personal space. So, with bitten-lip, we went with 8 total guests (7 invites).
Eight attendees each received a personalized acceptance letter to Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry.
The letter was printed in green ink on parchment paper and had the Hogwarts school seal on the very top of the letter. We made sure everything was to the "letter" following the book and, especially the movie. The envelope containing the acceptance letter also included several attachments to which the students recognized as extremely important additional information.

The letter included a "First Years' List of Requirements", several of which were included in the letter. The only thing the young wizard need really provide is a broom.
Hagrid the giant sent coins to buy supplies when they arrive at the party. I made the envelope for the coins out of vellum and closed it using a mini paper fastener.
Super Hubby designed this train ticket and I mounted it to shiny gold scrapbook paper.
Of course, each envelope was sealed with melted red crayon wax. I had a rubber-stamp alphabet set and used the "H" to press into the wax when it was slightly cooled.
In this world of Harry Potter, mail is delivered via Owl Post and our invitations were no exception. I had white balloons filled with helium and tied each to an invitation. I used a Sharpie Paint Pen to draw an owl on the balloon. Be sure you DO NOT overfill the balloon with helium or you'll pop the balloon when you go to draw on it. I first tried a Sharpie black marker, but it wasn't as effective as the Sharpie Paint Pen. I did, however, use a yellow Sharpie marker to fill in the owl's eyes. Now, they were ready for delivery. We visited each guest, Harry Potter music blaring from the car, and my son, wand at the ready, approaching each guest by congratulating them on their acceptance to Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. I wish I could have taken video!
Total Deliveries: 7 in one night!

This is just the beginning! See you next week!


Craftberry Bush said...

Wow Lil... I'm excited to see it all together....what great parents you are...not because of the material aspect of the party but because of the time and effort you put into making memories for your boy....thank you for sharing.xo
I can see why I haven't heard from you in a bit....:)
Time well spent.


Chrissy said...

Oh MY Word! This is amazing! I cannot wait to read the rest of your posts! I love the Darth Vador idea too! Genius!

Suzan Wood-Young said...

I bet every kid at school wants to be invited to your son's birthday parties! Can't wait to see what else you did. :)

Jaime Lyn said...

oh my goodness how darn cute! I can't wait to see more details of the actual party!!!!

Courtney @ Brilliant Like Fireflies said...

Looks like a fun party, I love your owl balloons. Makes me wish I was 10 again!

Jill @ Create.Craft.Love. said...

That is incredible! I just visited the Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal! So much fun! Can't wait to see the rest of it! Would love for you to stop by and link up to the Pomp Party which starts tomorrow!

Stopping by from the Mingle with Us Blog Hop. Following along via GFC! Would love for you to come visit me!

Jill @ Create.Craft.Love.

Jill @ Create.Craft.Love. said...

Thanks for sharing at the Pomp Party! Pinning to our Pomp Party board!

Jill @ Create.Craft.Love.

Unknown said...

Found you through Tatertots & jello...what a creative party!

Anonymous said...

What an amazing amount of thought and work went into this party! I can't wait to hear the rest of the details. We're watching Goblet of Fire as I type ;)

Jessie @ Dream and Differ said...

All I can say is wow. Just wow. The invitations, alone, are amazing! That's one lucky birthday boy!

Unknown said...

Quite informative post on themed birthday party. Arranged a super hero party for my nephew at a lovely venue NYC and invited all my family and his friends for this party. Everyone attended this party and nice return gifts were given to everyone.

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