Being a family of event planners, we love going all out when there is a party or occasion to plan!
My daughter recently turned 4 and it was the first time she actually had friends she could invite to a party. I didn’t really know any mums with kids her age and finally with starting nursery she had some littles to invite for once. Usually it’s mainly just family who come to the parties.
Since it was the first ‘big’ party for her, we decided to get a bit creative….well…a bit turned in to A LOT…and we went a bit overboard. BUT it was totally worth it and it was an absolutely incredible day!
We started with the theme which was fairy and unicorn and went from there. I dread to think what we actually spent on this party but what it should have cost would have probably been 10× more if we hadn’t have done a lot of it DIY ourselves. I’ll share what we did but will also tell you about a company we used for entertainment who were incredible!! At the end of the day we don’t have everything so even we have to bring in outside businesses!
Once we had the theme I instantly knew I wanted an outdoor venue. I knew Indie would LOVE my plan too!! I didn’t know if what I wanted would exist. I was of course willing to go with whatever we could get, be that a hall or a room somewhere instead but I focused on looking for something that would fit the vision. I actually love the challenge to be honest. Part of the fun is discovering something new that most people won’t have heard of before.
After weeks and weeks of searching I came across an activity retreat place that is used primarily by the Scouts! They had a communal living area surrounded by so much outdoor space and some woods and lots of grass. Something about this place intrigued me and I had to go have a look. They do various activities there like archery and outdoor challenges that can be booked. They actually offer parties where you can do some of the activities. We didn’t want this however, and I was just purely interested in the venue itself!
I went to have a look at Moor House Adventure Centre and very quickly could picture my little girl’s party there. She loves the outdoors and from the moment I saw the little woodland area with logs all set out in a circle I was sold! They also had big white Marquees just next to it that could be hired so we decided to plan for bad weather too and hire a marquee. At least this way we were prepared for everything! It actually ended up being a red hot day!
Normally when planning a party with a theme I would be a real stickler for keeping with colour schemes or things that go together but I kind of just started ordering things. I knew I wanted pink (Indie’s favourite colour) but also started introducing red and greens and pretty much anything went. I just figured I would work it out on the day!
A lot of the stuff I ordered was from Amazon and my new favourite obsession, Temu. I will link to any decor we bought at the end. It was actually hard to know what I would need since we had a whole marquee and woods. I didn’t want to spend fortunes on the decor especially because we had some pretty awesome entertainment planned so I needed to try and keep to a bit of a budget. Although…I’m not sure budget is a word that can be used as we didn’t actually have one and we went a bit spend crazy. But I did find ways to make this WAY cheaper than it should have been.
First of all I bought the decor super cheap as mentioned above. We also had a lot of decor/props from previous events and weddings we have done that we could use. From flowers to gold trees and a sequin backdrop to tablecloths. We even had a wonky clock and tree stump table that were from my wedding. I’ve used quite a few things from our wedding which actually ended up being really cute and made it extra special. We had a Beauty and the Beast, enchanted Castle style wedding so it had that magical vibe which was perfect for a fairy/unicorn in the woods party!
THE FLOOR PICNIC TABLES
I had seen a few photos floating around now of these cute boho style picnic tables. Usually they are for around 4 to 8 people and can cost over £100 to hire. I had 20 children coming to the party and knew that it would be a struggle to get someone to provide something this size and dread to think what it would potentially cost too. I would have happily paid if I hadn’t already spent so much already!! But I was determined to somehow make it happen! I wasn’t sure how yet but I kept searching online and on FB market place to see if anything jumped out.
After a few weeks of looking around I noticed someone selling some small pallettes and I instantly thought they would be perfect! It was a lot of work having to collect them, sand them down, remove any dangerous things sticking out and then paint them. It did take many days of graft but they turned out amazing!! I’ve had multiple requests to hire them since from people and party businesses. So looks like they will be available to hire (I’ll put any details below).
For table decor we used a big garland we kept from my brother’s and sis-in-law’s wedding top table. I had also bought a few little lights from of course Temu! Which were really effective even in the daylight although of course I forgot to turn them on! We had some cute cushions for children to sit on and just used a big tent flooring for underneath. Luckily we already had this as they can be expensive! Don’t even get me started on the cost of cushions!! We then had these beautiful paper plates and napkins on there which looked really cute!
I made a crafts table in the marquee in case some kids didn’t want to get involved with certain things or just needed something else to do. I tried to think about every child as I didn’t want any to feel uncomfortable or like they had to get fully stuck in to the things going on. I’ll be honest I didn’t even know if any of the children were SEN and I just wanted to try and be considerate to all the best I could. The great thing about the venue was that there was soooo much space to safely run around too for any wriggle bums at the party!
I planned to do a little treasure hunt towards the end which was a bit of an epic fail. I asked my dad to hide them just before all of the kids arrived. He hid them in plain sight but to be fair on him he didn’t want them going in any pricky plant areas/bushes. This obviously meant that within seconds the kids started picking up mini treasure chests with sweets in. I ended up just saying, all go find a treasure chest now, you might as well. The tiny chests were another Temu purchase and were amazing for only 39p! Not flimsy at all either. So perfect to keep afterwards!
The main entertainment for the party was something we came across a bit later in to our planning. There was a company not too far away who offered real unicorns and a fairy to visit. Now this was just too perfect and how could we not! Especially when I saw the photos of the beautiful white unicorn with rainbow hair. The little girl inside of me squealed a little when I saw the pics! I knew Indie would absolutely go crazy for this so if was a no brainer!
After chatting with the company who were very helpful we were all booked and on the day they were absolutely sensational. I would highly recommend C&J pony parties and events. They really go above and beyond and they absolutely MADE the party for my daughter and all of the children. The fairy was even better than I could have imagined and she looked like she belonged in the forest. It was all just so magical!
The company started with some small animals for the children to hold such as guinea pigs and rabbits. Then shortly after, they brought over a very tiny cute, black unicorn. This pony was meant to be a lot more calm and the children could brush her hair and pit clips in. They were then allowed to take turns to take her for a walk. Indie absolutely loved this! She found it hilarious every time the unicorn stopped to eat some grass.
Next up the big beautiful white unicorn made and appearance along with the fairy and wow!! You just saw the little one’s jaws drop!
Even I gasped when I saw them turn up in the woods. This unicorn was much bigger and a little more nervous but the fairy was very good at keeping her calm and making sure the children knew how to approach and be gentle. They even got to give her some treats.
We all took a gazillion photos and then all the animals and the fairy disappeared for a little break whilst we had some food!
After food they came back and the fairy came out again with the Unicorns. Other staff were doing face glitter and also glitter tattoos for the kids. It was all just the most perfect entertainment that would be loved by any age. Even my 9 year old son would get stuck in with that! Everyone loves a glitter tattoo!! The kids could walk the pony again and the fairy had a bubble wand to make lots of bubble fun for the others who were waiting.
The entertainment ended with the fairy playing some games with the kids. Throughout the whole party they had speakers in the woods playing music so I didn’t have to think about setting that up which was handy, especially for the games. They played lots of different games including musical statues, dancing games and the floor is lava, which worked well with all of the logs in the woods. And just before the fairy left they brought the white unicorn out for all the children to make wishes and blow fairy dust to. She then handed each of the children a crystal before saying goodbye. It was all just so beautiful!
With us hiring a marquee and woods we could only really do so much as far as getting creative with food. I would have loved a nice Instagrammy array of foods but we had invested enough time and energy without having to be the extra on top. That being said, hat’s off to my mum who still did some really cute food for the kiddies whilst also making an absolutely AMAZE cake!! Don’t know how she does it!
Myself and Indiana can’t have dairy so we decided to make it easy and just do everything dairy free. None of the kids or adults would have known any different and I had already checked if there were any other allergies which I would have catered for if needed. But it was just us awkward Annie’s, so we just swapped the butter to a plant based one and swapped the cheese to vegan cheese and everything else was easy peasy.
We had snail wraps which were ham and cheese. My mum made cute hedgehogs using half a melon with sausages on cocktail sticks. We had sprinkle sandwiches which weirdly were way more popular than we expected! Just butter and sprinkles and then cut in to flowers! We had some adorable toadstools which were just a raspberry with a small marshmallow in the bottom of it and then some icing to make the little spots. We had plant pot cakes which were awesome! Just some small cupcakes put in to terracotta pots and then crumble oreos on top for the soil and a little icing flower on top! We also had a big plate of pink things with everything from mirangues to wafers and party rings.
The children all were offered some pom bear crisps and also I had bought lots of the fruit shoot dupes from Aldi for them to drink. We also had water and squash. I had bought other bits that I actually forgot to put out like bread sticks, raisins and brownies and all sorts of other things. But the kids seemed happy with what was there. We also had some other foodie bits in the tents for adults and kids who wanted other things such as vegan tomato pasta and also had hot dogs on the go. We wanted to feed everyone but in a cost effective way that was easy so this just made sense.
In the marquee, as well as some other food I had pink lemonade and water on the go. We had a big cooler box to keep stuff cold which worked quite well. I just froze some water bottles and put them in to keep it cold. The pink lemonade was from I Aldi or Lidl (can’t remember which) and was so cheap but tastes really nice and refreshing. I had bought some little screw on tap things from Temu which worked so well!! It kept the drinks fresh and made it easy for people to grab a drink quick.
THE PARTY BAGS
I am really funny about what goes in to a party bag. Mainly because I HATE spending my own money on things that might be binned within seconds. I hate feeling like I’ve wasted money. I have zero problem with my child accepting a party bag like this and naturally they are always excited of course. I obviously don’t want to spend fortunes but I tried to pick things that kids may actually keep…even for a little while or use before binning.
Inside the party bags, I went for unicorn head bands, a little animal squishy toy and a mini scratch art kit. I did put a few little bits in like a unicorn snap band bracelet, bubbles and a plastic lollipop shaped whistle. I also saw these self inflating unicorn balloons from Home Home bargains. They were in a pack of 4 and were so easy to inflate and came on a plastic stick. I had one of these poking out the top of bags too. The bags I used matched the paper plates and napkins. They were the perfect size to fit everything in! They also of course got to take home the mini treasure chests with the sweets too.
There’s probably things I have forgotten to mention in here and I can see me still adding in links as the days go by. It was such a fantastic, big, amazing, beautiful day and I will treasure those photos forever of my fairy princess. Some might look at this and think it was completely over the top, and they would be right. But when it comes to a party/occasion I am an all or nothing kind of person, I get carried away and I love it so much! An expensive hobby but I would happily plan parties all day long if I could!
Indie’s outfit –
Download the Temu App HERE
- Boho picnic tables with decor/cushions – contact me here for hire info
- Wonky clock – contact me here for hire info
- Magical woodland backdrop – Amazon
- Mushroom lanterns – Temu
- Small Gold treasure chests – Temu
- Paper plates – Amazon
- Napkins – Amazon
- Daisy balloon – Temu
- Mini table lamps – Temu
Party Bags –
- Unicorn/fairy/glitter tattoos – Pony Party’s and Unicorn Adventures By C&E Equestrian
If you see anything pictured that you are interested in but can’t see a link for it please feel free to leave a comment below. Some items we just grabbed from our home and borrowed from friends and we can find out the info for you!