MiniObsi wanted to have a Harry Potter themed birthday party this year. It took a lot of organising, but I think it turned out pretty well 🙂 I’ll share what I did here in case others want to take inspiration.
I have a Pintrest board with some of the ideas I collected. Some of them I used, some I didn’t – and some things I did I don’t have pins for, but it’ll give you some inspiration I’m sure – http://www.pinterest.com/obsi/harry-potter-birthday-inspiration
I bought parchment look paper and envelopes. I would have used actual sealing wax, but I misplaced mine and couldn’t find any to buy at short notice – so I ended up buying stick on plastic fake seals… The wording came from looking at other people’s Potter birthday invitations, edited to make it applicable for ours (which was a sleepover). The owl stamp was printed onto the envelopes (I googled to find the image).
Each child got the bag when they left the party, so a few items they used at the party were placed into the bag with the other goodies (those things I’ll explain later). I picked the bags themselves up for $2 for a pack of 3 at a discount store (perfect considering there were 6 people at the party including MiniObsi).
The bags contained:
- 6 little “books”
- Gold chocolate coins
- “Floo powder”
- “Bertie Botts every flavour beans”
- “Fairy Wee” potion bottle (orange blossom water in a little glass bottle)
- Golden Snitch bracelet in a little packet
- Gringotts Bank withdrawal slip
- Chocolate Frog in a box
- “Seed” packets
- Train Ticket
- 2 feather quills (unpictured, a purple feather with blue ink and black feather with black ink)
Floo Powder & Beans
I saw the idea online for using jelly crystals for Floo Powder, so I added some “saline” stuff (which is a bit like sherbet) to make it fizzy. The beans were just regular jellybeans. The packet tops I modified from the labels I found here. I made them to fold over with a “poof” on the back for the Floo powder and some cartoon beans for the beans – both found in google image search.
Gringotts Bank Withdrawal Slip
MiniObsi wanted the kids to go to Gringotts and get out some chocolate coins to “buy” their school supplies. So when I found this online, I thought that was perfect! I modified it a little to add a unique account and vault number for each girl. I also had divided the chocolate coins up to work out how many each girl would get, and put that info on the side so that the banker could make sure he gave them the right amounts and everyone got exactly the same thing 😀 (we had 2 different brands of coins, so that’s why we have Darker or Lighter $1 coins)
You can get the printable frog box from here. I printed them out on paper, but the boxes were a bit floppy, card would have been better. Also the first lot I printed out I made too small and the frogs wouldn’t fit! So check your sizing!!! I was going to make my own frogs, but I ran out of time and energy, so I bought prepackaged freddo frogs (the multipack ones) and used those.
Golden Snitch Bracelets
For these, I saw some online and thought they looked cute, so I bought the supplies on ebay to make them. I took the seed packet image and recoloured it into a slightly goldy colour, cut out the plant related stuff and added a couple of snitch pictures. Then printed those out (larger than the seed packets, so the bracelets would fit inside). Then gave a really light gold wash to the paper to pretty it up.
I found these while searching for the book covers to print out. I think you need to be a registered member of the forum to see and download the images, but the link for them is here. I inserted the images into a word file and printed them out so that I could fit the 4 different ones on the same page, and put different edible seeds in them (sunflower, poppy, sesame and pepita seeds).
I contemplated using seeds they could plant (herbs or whatever), but I thought it might be too confusing to try and let them know what seeds were what (though a slip of paper in the seed packets telling people what they actually were would work)
I was pleased with how these turned out. So that we could have the kids “buy” their schoolbooks from Flourish & Blotts, we needed some little books for them. Originally I thought I’d just have them as blank notebooks for them. But then I decided it would be cute to add a few pages of contents to them. So that took a while to collect. I printed them so that there were 2 to a page.
The book covers I found online. Most of them were designed for a proper book with a spine, so I modified them so that they would work as a flat book. I couldn’t find a Gilderoy book with the back cover, so I had to design that myself based on a photo I saw of the back of the book.
Drafts and Potions Book. I found Harry Potter potions online and used those. The cover I printed from Here.
Magical History Book – I googled to find some Harry Potter crosswords and Find-a-Words for this book. Some of the ones I used were pdf ones, so I took a screenshot of the page and used that as the image. The cover I found here.
Advanced Potion Making – This book they used in the potions class to write up the recipes of things they tried. Cover is found here.
Gilderoy Lockhart’s Guide to Household Pests – The cover for this was only a front, so I had to create the back based on a photo I saw (which I can’t find now). Find the cover here. The contents hubby found for me – I think he said he found it from the dialogue on a game. It basically is him waffling on about imps and horeklumps. So then I found an image of a horeklump to add in a space on one page.
The Standard Book of Spells – This one I used a list of (supposedly) all the spells and charms. Then to fill a space I found a picture of the feather. Cover is here.
Defense against the Dark Arts – This book had me wondering what to do… then eventually I thought that what I could make out like the book contents had been erased by the Ministry of Magic 😀 (Since in the movie they didn’t want the students to learn the practical side of it). So I found a Ministry seal and wrote a little blurb. Then the other pages I thought I’d put a picture of a cat, because Delores loves cats and the girls would find that cute 🙂 Cover is here.
One of the things MiniObsi wanted to do was to have the girls visit Olivanders to get a wand and decorate the wands. So we worked out that given the time restraints of the party, I’d decorate the wands with yarn/hot glue and give them a base coat of paint, then the kids would “buy” these at Olivanders (with their gold coins) and then we’d have a wand decorating class at Hogwarts for them to decorate their wands.
So I bought some bamboo chopsticks, for about $1.20 a pack of 20…. and set about decorating them with some spare yarn I had. A few I added some hot glue designs to as well.
The wand boxes I found a guide and template for here. But the boxes ended up needing to have masking tape on the outside of the lid which didn’t look as good – so I think this guide on making them would have been better. I made them with cereal boxes and masking tape (so the inside of the box was the unprinted side).
Then painted them brown on the outside. I did a light brushing of gold paint on the edges of the box, to weather them a little and make them a little more magical. You can see the effect on the boxes at the back, the front boxes don’t have this yet.
For the inside of the boxes, I used some packing foam I’d kept. I cut one piece the size of the box and then 4 strips as long as the box, and taped 2 of those together on each side – to form a U shaped holder for the wands. Covered that with a strip of red satin fabric I had lying around. A lot of people have a piece of wide, organza ribbon that lies over the top of the wand. I did want to do that, but the budget for this party was pretty tight so I didn’t do that.
Again with money-saving, I printed the labels on white paper instead of on gold or something fancy…. but then did the same light brushing of gold paint over the top to make them look old and magical.
I used an online wand generator (based on numbers, so I rolled a dice while thinking of the guest) to determine the wand wood and core ingredient for each person – and printed a fancy label with their name on it, one with their wand info on it for the outside of the wand box – and then a plain white one for the inside lid of the box.
The idea was that if the boxes were named, they couldn’t fight over whose was whose, and having the wand info on the box fit with the theme – even though they didn’t get the wands in the way from the movie.