Science Themed Graduation Party

Post by Colleen of Lemon Thistle

Science Themed Graduation Party

Let’s face it. Throwing parties can be stressful (with a capital S), but they can also be a ton of fun. A couple of weeks ago we traveled 8 hours by car to celebrate my little sister’s university graduation. She’s a ‘super nerd’ (we lovingly call her) and she graduated with an Honors degree in Cellular Molecular Biology and a Chemistry Degree. I wanted to throw a little graduation party for her to invite some friends to visit with our family while we were in town and celebrate her incredible accomplishments. After telling her to invite her friends over I realized a few things. I had NO idea what her house looks like… is there a good place to put a party table? I had NO room in our car (filled with playpens and snacks for our twins) to pack bunches of decorations but I really, really wanted it to be fun and special for her. PLUS, my sister is my biggest blog fan and has talked me up to all of her friends so I felt like I really had to make it look good.

So I set to the internet to find some ideas for adult science graduation parties and came up pretty empty. Then I came across this Fundamental Party kit from The Land of Nod and decided that was my solution. Since I’m a DIY’er at heart, I decided I’d DIY a science themed backdrop to go along with the decorations. I used black dollar store table cloths to cover the table and wall so I didn’t have to worry what kind of wall/ decorations I was competing with. That wall is actually brown/tan with nails sticking out of it… the backdrop covers it all! I had my sister write equations and diagrams in chalk pen on the table cloth for a chalkboard look. I created some molecules using painted Styrofoam balls and barbecue skewers for something a little extra. I’m so thrilled with how it turned out and it was a ton of fun to get to know her friends a little bit.

Science Themed Graduation Party

Nod Science Party-15061110 Nod Science Party-1506118 Nod Science Party-1506114Here’s some tips to throw a stress-free (but beautiful!) party no matter where on earth you are:

  • Find some awesome pre-made party decorations. Paper and plastic make for a fast clean up!
  • Get a table cloth and backdrop- again, disposable is best!
  • DIY a couple handmade touches ahead of time that you can toss when you’re done (like my molecules, or a centerpiece)
  • Bring everything you may possibly need (I learned the hard way that not everyone stocks tape in their house- save yourself the stress!)
  • Have food either prepped ahead of time or choose ready made options (we hit the grocery store when we got to town since we were traveling on a hot day)
  • Keep it simple – don’t get too fussy, you and your guests will enjoy themselves more if you’re not running around asking them to tape up last minute signs and arrange flowers.
  • Focus on one area – you don’t need to spread decorations around a whole house for a fun party. Make a great table and relax about the rest!

I hope these tips will help you have  a stress-free party (no matter where you are!), they certainly helped me pull this off in 45 minutes in a house I’ve never been to. Do you have any tips for a simple (but fun!) party? Share them in the comments below, I’d love to hear from you!

Colleen is a wife, Mama to 21 month old twins, and the DIY and lifestyle blogger behind Lemon Thistle where she shares printable art and hands on tutorials for DIY home decor, parties and gifts. Colleen believes you can have a beautiful life, home, and party without spending a lot- we’re keeping it real on a budget so everyone can join in on the fun.

Party On: Mystical Unicorns

Written by Becca of CAKE. | events + design

I’m in full planning mode for my daughter’s 5th birthday party, and as far as she’s concerned-unicorns are where it’s at!  I’m so in love with Sabrina Gibson’s charming plush unicorns that I’m using them as the inspiration for our unicorn themed party as well as our favors.  Check out this month’s Party On ideas for creating a sweet and modern unicorn theme.

Unicorn Themed Party 1 // 2 // 3 // 4 // 5 // 6 // 7 // 8

Color Palette: lilac // aqua // bubble gum pink // cool grey

Party Invitation: available here

What do unicorns make you think of?  I grew up in the 80’s so for me it’s a throwback to icons of childhood… stars, hearts, rainbows and fluffy white clouds.  You could create a unicorn themed party with any one of those elements, but I like the idea of mixing them all up in a soft and playful way. These boards are all about finding creative uses for household items, so here are some of my favorite suggestions on how to make this party yours:

  • Use these colorful cubbys to make a statement at your dessert bar by filling each one up with a color coded candy surprise.  Even better, make it a party activity by having guests use the candy to decorate their own cupcakes and top them with sparkly stars.
  • Garlands and streamers are an easy way to turn your living room into a magical party space, and there is no such thing as too many. For a little extra detail that won’t go unnoticed, consider replacing your drawer pulls and use them as the anchors to hang decorations all around your space.
  • Create a unicorn dance party area with simple strobe style lighting and piles of colorful balloons… while you’re at it, a rainbow heart rug wouldn’t hurt.
  • A shower curtain… why not!? Run a dowel through the top hooks and suddenly you’ve got a dramatic table backdrop or photo booth.  And if you like to DiY, craft up some party hat style horns and ribbon tails for super cute dress up props.

If you’re inspired to go out and throw your own unicorn party now, you might need an invitation… lucky for you I happen to have just the thing in my shop.

Becca Gorski lives in the SF Bay Area, is a working mother of two, and moonlights as an occasional designer / blogger / celebration maker. You can find her creative ideas at CAKE. and her line of merry happy party printables on Etsy.

The Party On series offers inspiration for family friendly parties, featuring items from The Land of Nod that can be incorporated into both your event and your home.

How to Throw a Kids Party They’ll Actually Love

Post by Kelsey of We Heart Parties

Parties are my love language. I think they are SO fun to throw.

All the desserts and décor and tiny little treat cups and perfect party favors…

But – what matters most is that the guests have FUN. When throwing kids party, it is so important to think beyond the fancy paper lanterns and create fun spaces for them to play.

Après Ski Kids Party

I recently threw an Après Ski themed kids party for my daughter. She’s been skiing twice and loves to hit the slopes like the big kids and adults.

Après Ski Kids Party - Cookies Après Ski Kids Party - Birthday Cake

While the desserts and décor were quite cute, I wanted to make sure the kids had play spaces and games to keep them entertained.

I like to create three separate play spaces, activities or games at a party.

The guests at this Après Ski Party were between the ages of 3-5, so I decided on:

  1. A Warming Hut & Campfire Play Space
  2. A Coloring Table
  3. An Indoor Ski Race

Après Ski Kids Party Après Ski Kids Party Après Ski Kids Party

I’ve always been in love with The Land of Nod’s teepees! Paired with their Plush Campfire Set, it made the perfect “Warming Hut” for chilly little skiers. The kids loved roasting marshmallows and hot dogs over the fire!

The second activity was a coloring table full of snow skiing themed coloring pages. I found all the coloring pages for free online, and the kids spent quite a bit of time here.

Après Ski Kids Party

And finally, we got the kids moving with an indoor ski race course! My daughter’s first ski run was a green called Sweet Pea, so I created the Sweet Pea Race Course.

Each party guest got a turn to slip on cardboard skis and race (shuffle!) around the course.

When they crossed the finish line they were presented with a gold medal.

Après Ski Kids Party - Games

Après Ski Kids Party - Games

These three activities kept the kids entertained throughout the party, and more importantly allowed them to have lots of FUN!

So at your next party – remember to create fun play spaces and activities that kids will love, along with the super cute treats and décor.

All photos by Kyla Coots

Kelsey Graves is the founder of We Heart Parties – a party ideas website. Join the We Heart Parties community by sharing your parties on the site. And follow We Heart Parties on Pinterest and Instagram for daily party inspiration.

DIY Pom Pom Bunny Rabbit Towel

Post by Colleen of Lemon Thistle

DIY Pom Pom Bunny Rabbit TowelIt’s been warm and sunny around here lately, so I can tell Easter is just around the corner. This DIY is quick, simple and brings so much joy to your kitchen in no time (and I have a printable template for you!). My kiddos so enjoyed pretending to ‘bake’ up some ice cream (they clearly don’t know how it’s made!) with their new towel. Ready to make your own DIY pom pom bunny rabbit towel?

DIY Pom Pom Bunny Rabbit TowelHere’s what you’ll need to make your DIY Pom Pom Bunny Rabbit Towel:

  • Printable Template
  • Flour Sack Tea Towel (or any plain tea towel)
  • Black fabric paint (My absolute favorite is Tulip soft – in Matte) & Paint Brush
    • OR Print Template on Iron Transfer Paper
  • Yarn for Pom Pom
  • Large Fork
  • Scissors
  • Darning Needle

Directions:

  1. Print out the bunny template either on standard paper (if you’d like to paint it on like me) or onto Iron Transfer Paper. If you are choosing to iron on your design, you can find a video explaining how to do that here. If you’re going to give the bunny a thick painted look, read on!
  2. Tape your template down on a hard surface. Then, lay your towel over top, lining the design up underneath where you like. Then, give it a quick iron and tape the towel down to keep it from shifting while you paint. DIY Pom Pom Bunny Rabbit Towel
  3. Now it’s time to get painting! I used a thick paint brush- I love the heavy brush look that is on trend right now. I found I needed to reload my brush quite often to keep the edges of my lines crisp. Let it dry completely before adding the pom pom (4 hours). The paint dries to be a soft matte and is washable time and time again- perfect for a tea towel!DIY Pom Pom Bunny Rabbit Towel
  4. Now for the pom pom. You could easily use any pom pom you might find at a craft store, but I decided to use two different colours of wool to make my own. I really like the two tone colour of the pom pom, and since the wools are different thicknesses, it has a speckled look (fun!). To make your own, wrap your yarn around a fork until you have a ball of yarn slightly smaller than the pom pom sized you would like. Then, use another piece of yarn to tie through the slats of the fork around the centre of your yarn ball. Cut the edges and fluff it out. You might find your pom pom isn’t very ‘tough’ if you haven’t tied that knot tight enough. I added a few more ties in to make sure that no wool could pull out of the pom pom.DIY Pom Pom Bunny Rabbit TowelBunny Towel-15031619 Bunny Towel-15031621Bunny Towel-15031617
  5. Then, take your darning needle (basically the biggest needle you can find at the sewing store), and use one simple stitch to tie the pom pom on to the towel as shown in the photos above. DIY Pom Pom Bunny Rabbit Towel DIY Pom Pom Bunny Rabbit Towel DIY Pom Pom Bunny Rabbit Towel

That’s all there is to it! This bunny rabbit brings a fun pop of color into my kitchen (thanks to the pom pom) and makes my kiddos so happy- they run over and give it kisses throughout the day.

DIY Pom Pom Bunny Rabbit Towel DIY Pom Pom Bunny Rabbit TowelColleen is the lifestyle blogger behind Lemon Thistle – home to DIY, parties, printables, home décor and lots of babies. She’s a wife; mama to 18-month-old twins; and lover of pretty things. Colleen believes you can have a beautiful life, home, and party without spending a lot –  (keeping it real with a budget). Every day deserves to be special, there’s no accomplishment too small to celebrate. She hopes that her children will learn to love the little things in life.