This bear party post is courtesy of our contributor Chantelle…Hosting a themed party shouldn’t mean breaking the bank. With a bit of planning and creative thinking, pulling together a themed party can be relatively cheap and a whole lot of fun.
I recently hosted a Teddy Bear Picnic themed playdate and came up with my top 5 budget friendly party supplies to share with you! These are tried and true items I incorporate into almost all my parties because they don’t cost a lot but really help set the scene and carry out my theme.
Solid Color Paper Plates:
Approximate Cost: $2 per package of 12 plates
For my parties, I LOVE dressing up solid color paper plates to coordinate with my theme. They are cheap and easy to find in a wide array of colors from any dollar or party store. For my teddy bear party plates, I simply stapled on ears I cut from matching scrapbook paper.
The plates served dual purpose, both as something to eat off of, and as part of the decorative banner I created for behind the table. With the addition of paper bows they looked fun and festive strung up behind my table.
Approximate Cost: $2 per Tablecloth
For kids parties, I generally choose plastic tablecloths over real linen. They are inexpensive, come in a wide variety of colors and designs, and are easy to wipe down if there is a spill. They are disposable if torn or messy, but can hold up to several uses with care; like the grass printed cloth I reused from my daughter’s second birthday party.
Layer different colored tablecloths, use them as table runner or gather them to create ruffles. There are lots of ideas on Pinterest for how to make plain plastic tablecloths look spectacular.
For my teddy bear party picnic, I also bought an extra blue and green checkered tablecloth to use to pull some of my items together and further coordinate the table. I cut small squares to use to line my cardboard berry baskets and I cut strips to tie in bows around my cutlery crate and cookie jar.
Approximate Cost: FREE
For my teddy bear picnic, I didn’t have to look any further then my own kids’ bedrooms to help add the finishing touches to my tablescape. Their favorite teddy bears looked adorable on the table among the food and didn’t cost me a penny to decorate with.
When planning a birthday party, chances are the theme you choose will be something your kid is into and likely already has toys or books related to. If not, there may be a special new toy you could purchase as a gift for your child to have after you use it as decoration on your party table.
Approximate Cost: $3 in printing
I am a graphic designer so I like to use my parties as an opportunity to showcase some of my skills. A lot of my signage gets designed and printed inexpensively on my home printer or printed as $0.19 prints from my favorite Photo Centre.
If you are not as capable on the computer, there is nothing wrong with going the handmade route. My cute “Please Feed the Bears” sign was hand-painted in brown acrylic paint on cardstock using supplies I already had in my craft bin. Even something as simple as handwritten tent cards on nice scrapbooking paper would look nice beside each food item.
Approximate Cost: Varies
Since it is a food table, let the food be the star! You likely have to buy food for the party anyway, so select items that fit with your theme and find unique ways to present them. The simplest of food items can look high-end when placed out neatly and presented in a surprising way. All it took was a bear shaped cookie cutter to transform my boring peanut butter & jam sandwiches into something fun and exciting for the kids.
My store bought Bear Paw Cookies also looked great when pulled out of their individual packages and placed neatly on a leaf shaped platter.
Finally, use a variety of serving containers to add interest to your table. Instead of your standard fruit or vegetable platter, I arranged my veggies in tin containers and served my berries in cardboard berry baskets. You don’t need to break out the fine china, just use what containers and baskets you might already have around the house.
Parties are supposed to be fun & not stressful. Hopefully I have given you some easy and budget-friendly ideas to incorporate and help carry out your next themed bash.
More Bear Party Ideas:
We’d like to send a huge THANK YOU to Chantelle for sharing this incredibly sweet party with us. There are a lot more creative ideas where this came from – visit her on Facebook to see the latest ideas for fun crafts, party ideas and more!