Wanted to take the opportunity here to share with you some (ok, LOTS of) photos and share with you the wonderful suppliers.
The photos are nothing short of AMAZING! My gorgeous friend Deanna Whyte of Deanna Whyte Photography did an wonderful job of not only capturing all the elements that I put together for the party but also all the little "moments" that made it so special - this is what Deanna specialises in ;)
It all started about a year ago, when discussing themes for her 5th birthday party (about 5 minutes after her 4th birthday party was over LOL!). Circus was decided upon pretty early and Ella was also very definite about her costume. She wanted to be a bareback horse rider, complete with feathers and tu tu!
Lucky for me, one her dancing costumes fitted the bill perfectly! All I had to do was make some gloves and a headband to match. Okay, so I'm biased, but gosh she's beautiful..... :)
(Those amazing huge balloons came from Little Sooti and really helped set the scene!)
Now I just happen to have a Circus themed invitation in my range which was perfect for Ella's party as we wanted lots of bright colours. I customised the invite and created a few more matching applications including a ticket that the kids had to bring with them to be admitted to the circus and an RSVP postcard to be posted back that not only had whether or not they could attend but also a tick box menu for what they wanted for lunch.
I really wanted to create the look and feel of a real circus for the kids. I believe in making kids parties a real experience for them, one that amazes and involves them the whole time. I guess that's why I like themes and dressing up so much (have a look at Ella's 4th birthday here). Kids' imaginations are AMAZING and dressing up and decorating the party space can really transport them to a magical place.
With this in mind I thought my parents outdoor entertaining area was the perfect venue as I could envisage it set up as a circus. What wonderful parents I have....I don't think I actually even asked them...more 'informed' them that Ella's party would be held there!! Rather cheeky really!! Being ever supportive, loving, caring parents/grandparents, they let me take over their house, helped with set up, all throughout the party and with pack up. THANK YOU Mum and Dad!!!!!!! That's them dancing in the pic below ;)
Wanting to create a sense of going to a real circus, when the children arrived and handed over their ticket, they stayed inside, in the "holding area". Ella greeted them and opened her presents and they received their name badge and met our clown (AKA - Ella's Daddy!).
My other gorgeous daughter :)
When everyone had arrived it was time to enter THE CIRCUS! Ella lead them through the red curtains and they all took a seat - a cushion.
After I - the Ringmaster - had welcomed the children to circus and introduced them to our clown, he entertained while I got lunches organised.
For lunch I decided that instead of encroaching on the arena space with tables and chairs we would carry the theme of a real circus through by using lunch boxes (bought from Candy Soirees) all labeled with the kids' names, containing the selection from the RSVP/menu postcard which included either real chicken nuggets, mini hot dog or ham and cheese sandwich, a water or juice and a baking cup filled with plain crisps.
They kids ate these while they watched the show, which after the clown, included a dance by my very talented cousin Kayla who then got the kids up to have a dance themsleves!
Then it was time for popcorn and fairy floss supplied by Taylor'd Events and what was even nicer about this was that proceeds went to charity! Must admit, this REALLY made it seems like a special circus, great novelty for the kids!
Snacks in hand, they were ready for the next performance, a magic show featuring my sweet brother in law, AKA Chrisarbo the GREAT!
Had to included this one... it's Ella's reaction when she asked Chrisabo the GREAT how he knew which card she had and he said his owl (a stuffed toy prop) told him, her reply, "Well that's not really magic is it!" - cheeky monkey!!!
Then it was onto bubbles, dancing, puppet shows, games and prizes - individual packaged and pinned up on a prize board.
Then dress ups in the photo booth!!!
Time for SWEETS!!!!! We had star cookies, marshmallow big top pops, cake pops, fruit sticks and clown cupcakes all made by moi ;) Clown cakes are from Martha Stewart - here :) Then Clown noses (jaffas), monkey treats (bananas), smarties and rainbow strips to fill personalized lollies bags with and take home. These were all housed on a canopied table, constructed by our very cleverr resident clown - AKA Daddy ;)
Custom Cake Designs. I mean seriously, how cute is the mini Ella?? Not only did it look amazing but that was one YUMMY Chocolate Mud cake inside there!!
It was a HUGE day with LOADS of fun had by all, especially my gorgeous girl Ella, which of course is the most important thing :) The kids all took home a clown nose, bubbles, their lolly bags and whatever prizes they won in their lunch box and also their cushion.
I would like to finish off by saying a big thank you once again to:
My Mum and Dad (and bro Matt!) - I promise never to take over your house again!
My husband AKA Clown - really appreciate how into character you got xx
My cousin Kayla (and Auntie Andrea!) - fabulous, talented and next time I will confirm the address!
My brother in law AKA Chrisarbo the GREAT - magician extraordinaire, your bag of tricks was so very appreciated!!
My suppliers whose amazing talents and products made the party what it was..