I love planning birthday parties with my kids. I really do :) It can take awhile to come up with a meaningful theme together, but it's always worth the effort. My daughter was really into fairies this year, thanks to a sweet grandma and auntie gifting her some beautiful fairy books; but when this same grandma sent toadstool candles from Belgium for Christmas, I knew it couldn't be just a Fairy Party, but rather a Woodland Fairy Party :) They really are the cutest little things ever (Love that Dille & Kamille). You could really go crazy with this theme, especially if the outdoors were an option; but I kept things as simple as possible, using things from around my home as props. Plus, it kept costs down :)
I spotted these invitations on Etsy but found them too late :( I procrastinated on sending out invitations so there was no time for them to travel from Australia. I asked the seller if I could purchase the pdf of the invitation given the issue of time and she was gracious enough to say "yes". I hit Roberts and bought wooden spools, rounded tops, some red spray paint and a small container of white acrylic paint. Using a glue gun I adhered the spool and rounded top together and once those dried, I applied one coat of spray paint. Then, using the end of a paint brush we put little dots on the toadstools. The toadstools were so much fun to make I could've easily made 20 without blinking!
During the party we played simple old-fashioned games like "pass the pine cone" and spoon relays (while balancing a pine cone on the spoon). Since these were 8-year-old-craft-loving-girls we decorated star paper mache wands with glitter, jewel stickers, markers and ribbons. Besides eating the above-pictured treats, I also served a plate of veggie sticks. I'm always surprised at how many takers there are when it comes to eating healthy options too.
As far as party favors go, I am a big fan of gifting something meaningful and simple that doesn't cost more than $2. In the past I've found little wooden toys in the dollar aisle at Target, but this time I was able to put together a necklace for just $2 thanks to OTC and Ebay. After my daughter and I put the necklaces together I wrapped them in tissue paper and placed inside a muslin bag. The girls seemed pretty excited about them!
Sources: Fairy Charms - OTC; Ball Chains - Ebay; Wooden Mushrooms - Pentagram, Paris; Fairy Muslin Favor Bags - made by a local artist (email me for deets); Toadstool Candles - Dille & Kamille; Kraft Brown Baking Cups - If You Care; Fairy Invitations - RubyLuisa; Vintage Swedish Fairy Cut-outs for napkins - Sweet and Candy
Update: I've recently put together a few new birthday party ideas based on beautiful postage stamps if you care to look!