Halloween activities 2020 - pumpkins covered in spiderwebs

Halloween Activities 2020

Halloween 2020 isn’t cancelled guys … we just need to be a bit more creative in what we do and how we do it!  I’ve hunted high and low for some of the best Halloween activities for 2020 to keep you going over half term and Halloween. 

Halloween Crafts

Craft Kits

*cough, cough* I’ve created a rather marvellous Halloween craft kit for children aged 5-12, packed with 3 fun crafts and a spooky experiment (plus it’s fairly mess-free – yay!).  There’s also a wand craft kit available for any aspiring witches and wizards!

Each kit comes with exclusive tutorial videos for the ultimate stress-free craft experience!

You can also find some autumnal craft inspiration over on my  Autumn crafts blog post. the Lego pumpkin is especially cool!

Halloween craft kit showing ghost tassel, pumpkin lantern, pumpkin decoration

Biscuit decorating

My wonderful friend at Biscuits By Sarah B has made the most gorgeous biscuit decorating kits.  My children and I have been lucky enough to try out a few of Sarah’s kits and they’re so much fun and delicious.

Pumpkin Pandemonium

Pumpkin picking and carving has taken off exponentially over the last few years, so why not make a day of it and take a trip to a pumpkin picking patch to choose your perfect pumpkin?  If you’re local to me in Dorset, Kara and her family from Are We Nearly There yet? went to Sopley Farm.  There’s also a great patch at Fordingbridge.

Pumpkin Painting

How about mixing things up this year and paint your pumpkins?  This is especially good for little ones.

Turn mini pumpkins into doughnuts with this wonderful tutorial by Studio DIY

Kailo chic has created some gorgeous 80s inspired pumpkins and just look at those gold storks!

Finally, if you’re feeling brave just let the kids go wild and do their own thing with Art bar’s painting pumpkins with kids tutorial.

Play Dough

Play dough is a brilliant activity to keep kids both young and old entertained. Kids love to get involved with making the play dough as well, check out this autumnal recipe from Sophie at This Mum Oils.

If you don’t have time to make your own, Oki Dough Ki makes THE MOST adorable play dough sets. Check out Rachel’s Halloween kit. I have it under good authority that they smell divine and inspire awesome imaginative play.

3 pots of Halloween themed play dough

Fun with clay

If you’re local to Dorchester, Deborah at Creative Clay for All has put together some takeaway clay kits. She’ll walk you through adding textures and shape to create clay creations to be proud of!

Free Halloween Colouring

You can download and print a free spooky pumpkin colouring download from By Charlie’s Hand.

Rock Painting

Fun and free is always a win, so how about doing some Halloween rock painting?

Rocks painted as pumpkins, ghosts and monsters

Halloween Activities

Pumpkin Trails

There’s not a lot of activities going on in 2020 (as I’m sure you can imagine), but some community-spirited people have set up pumpkin trails around the country. The idea is, that instead of trick or treating, people put up pictures of pumpkins or real pumpkins in their windows and we go on a walk to spot them. (You could also give a sweet for every pumpkin spotted.)
If you’re based in Dorset you can join in here – Great Pumpkin trails. A quick search on Facebook should show up any groups local to you.

The Enchanted Nanny’s School Of Magic

This October half-term, the Enchanted Nanny brings you the VIRTUAL School of Magic! Five days of potion-making, wand crafting, transfiguration (cookery), astronomy, herbology and more! (Guess who’s doing the wand making – yup! Meeeee!).

They’ve conjured each of the lessons, games and activities into something virtual that will transform your little one’s world at home, into their own magic academy over the half-term break.

Tickets are £10 per family and you can find out more or buy them here. Add on biscuit and wand kits can also be purchased.

Virtual school of magic

Shire Hall Slime Making

Throughout the half-term holidays, Shire Hall (in Dorchester, Dorset) will become home to spooky family-friendly fun. Join them for slippery slime-making workshops, count the spiders trail and spooky story-telling throughout the week.
Slime making will be to current government Covid guidelines.

Halloween Party Games

I know many of you are planning a small family Halloween party, so why not try some of these games?

  • Apple bobbing.
  • Hanging doughnuts on a string and eating them with no hands.
  • Toilet paper mummy wrapping.
  • Bingo – A quick search on Pinterest brings up lots of free Halloween themed bingo cards. My favourite is by Paper Trail Design.
  • Spagehtti rummage (grim but fun).
  • Pin the mouth on the pumpkin/ nose on the witch etc.
  • Pumpkin treasure hunt – Samantha Prewett from Samantha Prewett Photography suggests ‘We are doing a sweet hunt around the house instead of trick or treating. Turning off the lights and giving the kids a torch to find the sweets.’

Halloween Films …

There’s bound to be a rainy day or 2 over half term, so take cover and pop on the TV, snuggle under a blanket and enjoy a Halloween favourite! Here’s some inspiration if you need it. (Let me know your go-to Halloween film in the comments).

  • Hocus Pocus
  • Goosebumps
  • Ghostbusters
  • Paranorman
  • Spiderwick Chronicals

Spooky Food & Treats

When I’ve ventured into the supermarkets, I’ve noticed that there’s a lot less Halloween decorations, sweets and treats to buy. But fear not! The wonderful duo at the Bon Bon Boys has put together a gruesome selection of sweets for your delectation. Halloween is saved – hurrah!

Halloween sweets including worms, spiders, teeth, skulls and maggots

If you’re after further foodie inspiration how about…

  • worms and eyeballs (meatballs and spaghetti)
  • witches fingers (hot dog sausages)
  • mummy hot dogs (wrap pastry round to look like bandages)
  • spooky faces/mummy/spider web homemade pizza

If in doubt add edible eyes to everything!

Do You Have Any Ideas To Add?

I hope you’ve found some Halloween activities inspiration for 2020. Who needs to go out in the cold and knock on doors for sweets anyway?

Don’t forget to check out my Halloween craft kits before they’re all gone! Let me know in the comments if you know of any fun Halloween events or activities happening this half term and of course what your favourite film is! Let’s share the Halloween love and inspire each other. xoxo

PS Please note that this blog contains links to affiliate links. (This means if you click on a link and purchase something, you won’t pay a penny more, but I’ll earn a small commission.).

How I store children's craft supplies. Ikea craft trolley filled with paper, card, embellishments and accessories

How To Store Children’s Craft Supplies

A Crafty Mess and Stressful Storage

Many kids love to create and make, but how on earth do you store your children’s craft supplies?

Both of my children (aged 7 and 10) love arts and crafts. However, I used to store our supplies in different cupboards, boxes and drawers all over the house, making them inaccessible to the children.  Furthermore, crafting in our house had to be an activity that was planned in advance and the kids had to ask for the supplies. 

Subsequently, a couple of years ago, I read the Artful Parent by Jean Van Hul.  Her family are luckily enough to have an art room. Few people have that luxury, but it got me thinking … art shouldn’t always be led by adults. Children should have the freedom to explore different materials and techniques.

How I store children's craft supplies. Ikea craft trolley filled with paper, card, embellishments and accessories

An Invitation to Play

Firstly I purchased the Raskog Ikea trolley and an oilcloth table-cloth.  The trolley lives in a corner of the dining room, yes it’s not the most attractive thing to look at and it does get rather messy. BUT, as a result, the kids regularly gravitate towards the trolley and make models and pictures all by themselves.

If you don’t want a trolley, you could use a storage box, dedicate a shelf in a cupboard or plastic rainbow drawer units are useful too.

Get Organised: How to store children’s craft supplies

Once you’ve bought all your craft goodies, there are lots of ways to organise them.  I decided to put all the card, paper, foam and stickers together on the top shelf. The middle shelf is full of pots for beads, foam shapes, glitter etc. The bottom shelf has boxes from the Scrapstore (full of scrap materials) and boxes with lots of compartments for embellishments. 

My top tips for how to store children’s craft supplies –

  • Put art supplies you’re happy for them to play with unsupervised in a tin, basket or trolley.
  • Make the art supplies easy to get to and preferably near a table.
  • Organise craft materials in clear plastic pots.
  • Put papers, foam sheets, stickers together in document holders or cut the top off a cereal box (See photo).
  • Keep poster paint, paintbrushes, old t-shirts and water pots in a box out of sight and reach. Only get this out when you’re around!  (Above all, nobody wants blue paint on a beige carpet – trust me!)
  • Purchase each child an A4 plain notebook with thick pages and encourage the kids to paint, stick and draw in the books.  As a result, you won’t have stray artwork everywhere and you can all look back on what they’ve done. 
  • Save jam jars, pretty packaging and old beauty pots to store your craft supplies.
  • If you have space, it’s worth having a box in the garage and keeping a supply of cardboard boxes, kitchen rolls and interesting scrap for model making.

Finally, for ideas on what to put in your craft kit and where to buy it, pop over to my post about What to Put in a Child’s Craft Box

I hope you’re inspired to store your children’s craft supplies and allow them to have their own creative adventures. I’d love to hear what you put in your kits or even better, a photo in the comments would be awesome!

Thanks for reading, warm sparkly hugs,
Lexy

How to store children's craft supplies  with an invitation to play
pom pom and tassel wall hanging

Pom Pom Wall Hanging Tutorial

A handmade, pom pom wall hanging is a gorgeous addition to your home decor and furthermore, it’s easy to make!  If you’re short on time, you could make a mini wall hanging, with just one tassel, pom pom and beaded wire.

I think there’s something therapeutic about making pom poms and tassels, but there’s only so many keyrings you can add them to.  Consequently, my daughter, Izzy and I were super excited to create this gorgeous wall hanging together (to be fair, I only helped a bit!).

On a recent beach walk at Mudeford in Dorset, we found the most beautiful weather-beaten sticks, which were certainly shouting out to be used for a craft project.   Subsequently, we dug out some delightful shells and raided my extensive wool collection. Then Izzy got cracking with the crafting!

Here’s what you’ll need to make your very own pom pom wall hanging.

Supplies

Twig (ours is 40 cms)
Wool – We used Paint Box Yarns in pink, blue, yellow and grey.
Pom pom maker (preferably different sizes). We use Clover pom pom makers in sizes 35 mm, 45 mm, 65 mm and 85 mm.
Beads
Piece of card 7 x 11 cms
Scissors
Thin wire or embroidery thread

Please note, that these links are affiliate links and I receive a financial kickback if you make a purchase 🙂

Optional – shells (we found these shells with holes in already on a beach in Spain last summer).

Pom Pom Wall Hanging Instructions

Yellow tassel made from wool, with beads threaded onto it.

Step 1

Firstly, choose your colour scheme for the wall hanging and make 2 tassels out of wool, you can follow our online tassel tutorial for full instructions.  We made one pale pink tassel and one yellow and added pony beads onto the hanging threads.  Leave a generous amount of wool to hang your tassel with, so you can play around with the length. We used 42 cms for the yellow tassel and 86 cms for the pale pink tassel.

Step 2

Secondly, following my pom pom tutorial make 2 or 3 pom poms in different sizes.  We made pink and grey pom poms using a 65 mm pom pom maker and a blue pom pom using a 45 mm maker. Leave a generous amount of wool to hang your pom pom. We used 60 cms for the pink pom pom, 38 cms for the blue and 70 cms for the grey.).

Pink pom pom made from wool

Step 3

Put your stick on a table or the floor and lay out your pom poms and tassels in the order you want to hang them.  Then tie them onto the stick using a double knot or reef knot and trim the ends.

Step 4

  • Cut 3 lengths of thin wire (about 30 cms long each)
  • Thread a bead onto the end of each one.
  • Wrap the wire around the bead to secure it
  • Add a shell and / or some more beads. 
  • Wrap the other end of the beaded wire around the twig several times. 

It’s a good idea to use a different amount of beads on each length of wire. Alternatively, if you don’t have wire, use wool or embroidery thread.

Step 5

Cut three lengths of wool at 170 cms (we used yellow, pink and grey).  Tie all three ends together at one end and plait the long threads. Tie the ends together once you have finished.  We found it easier to ask someone to hold the tied ends whist the other person platted (or you could tie the ends onto a chair).  Tie your platted threads onto either end of your twig.

Hands showing 3 strand of wool being platted to make a plait for a pom pom wall hanging.

Step 6

Finally, hang your wall hanging up and enjoy!

In addition, you could add on other seasonal nature finds, such as pine cones and leaves in Autumn or add little pegs to clip on small photos.  

I hope you enjoy making your wall hanging and I’d love you to share a photo on Facebook or tag me on @madebymecraftparties on Instagram!  Happy pom pom making.

Warm, sparkly hugs,
Lexy x

Autumn crafts for kids

Autumn Crafts for Kids

Weekend Craftsperation – the best Autumn crafts for kids

This month, I’ve searched high and low for the best autumn crafts for kids and indeed the whole family.

I’ve been running a weekly slot over on Facebook for over a year called Weekend Craftsperation, where I share gorgeous and (fairly) simple makes that you might like to try with your children at the weekend. I’m really picky about what I share with you because it needs to be useful and achievable. I’ve now put all my crafty discoveries into one handy blog so you don’t have to go ferreting around on social media for them! I hope you like it.

Having spent a lot of time searching the internet for crafty DIYs I’ve come across a lot of sites that bombard you with advertising and are hard to load, read and follow. So I’ve avoided all of those and brought you only the best craft websites that I can muster (and for you to pin for a rainy day!).

Pine Cone Mobile

First up is this wonderful pine cone mobile by the amazing Art Bar. You can have loads of fun hunting for pine cones on a lovely autumnal walk and then go home and paint them whilst enjoying a hot chocolate.
These mobiles will look beautiful in your home and the whole family can take part! This is definitely high on my list of things to make (and yes, it’s a long old list!).

The best Autumn crafts for kids.
Beautiful autumnal pine cone mobile by Art Bar
Photo courtesy of Art Bar

Leaf Jar

Have you ever needed to ‘encourage’ your kids to go out on a walk to get fresh air?

The leaves are in full flow of turning all the beautiful colours at the moment. I love nothing more than spending a cool, sunny, autumn afternoon on a walk with the family kicking the leaves!

My kids love taking a bag out with them to collect autumn ‘treasure’, it’s a great way to get them outside in nature and to get them excited about making too. I hope it works for you too and keeps the whole family happy.

Once you have your stash of leaves, you could try these glass tea light jars by Spark & Chemistry. (I think the leaves don’t need to be too dried out as they’ll just crumble, so I’d recommend doing the craft soon after your walk).

The best autumn crafts for kids
Autumn leaf tea light jars by Sparkle and Chemistry
Photo courtesy of Spark and Chemistry

Ceramic Leaf

OMG … these leaf bowls by Dainty Dress Diaries are ABSOLUTELY beautiful! I’m not entirely sure that my efforts will be quite so amazing but I’m going to give it a go!
These bowls would be a brilliant rainy day activity during the school holidays. You could also use the left over clay for all sorts of fun projects such as making beads and animals, or for the next project.

Need to buy some clay?

The best autumn crafts for kids.
Gorgeous autumn leaf bowl made with air dried clay by Dainty Dress Diaries
Photo courtesy of Dainty Dress Diaries

Clay Hedgehog

Does your child struggle to sit still and craft or perhaps the leaf bowls are a bit tricky for them? This idea from Sun Hats and Wellie Boots is quick and simple and perfect for littlies.
My son made these at school this term and he’s so proud of his! I’ll share his beauty in the comments (he’s called Spiky).

The best autumn crafts for kids - clay hedgehog DIY by Sun Hats and Wellie Boots

Lego Pumpkins

Finally, I couldn’t let October pass without a nod to Halloween and this Lego DIY by Frugal Fun for Boys and Girls is so imaginative!
You can even pop an led tea light in it and it looks awesome 😍 (the website is a little slow, but stick with it, I promise it’s worth it).

Need some orange Lego?

The best autumn crafts for kids.
Brilliant Lego pumpkins by Frugal Fun for Boys and Girls

If you’re fairly new to crafting with your children, I’ve written a useful post about creating a craft kit for children and where to buy your supplies from to get you started.

Have you tried any wonderful autumn crafts with your children? I’d love to hear about your favourite activities in the comments?

The best autumn craft ideas for kids.  A round up of the cutest seasonal crafts I can find on the web!

Made By Me Craft Parties is Five!

Oh my goodness! I can’t believe that Made By Me Craft Parties is celebrating it’s 5th birthday in October! Five whole years of bringing crafty sparkly joy to parties in Dorset. To say thank you to all my customers, followers, supporters and future customers, I’m throwing a craft party to celebrate!

The Story Of Made By Me Craft Parties

Five years ago Made By Me was just little old me running ‘bronze, silver and gold’ craft party packages. But why did a set it up? To cut a long short short, it was my family. I didn’t have aspirations for world dominance in the world of parties, in contrast, I wanted a career that fitted in with my young family. I won’t bore you with all the details, but you can find out more about my story here.

How I’ve Grown

It’s been a steep learning curve of website building, networking, marketing and developing new parties. I’ve met some amazing small business owners along the way who’ve helped me enormously. My parties have developed over the years with attention to detail and a vast array of craft materials by my side!

Five years later, I’ve won an award for Creative Of The Year from the Successful Women in Business Awards. I launched the Spa of Our Own parties. Sarah, from Biscuits By Sarah B and I joined forces to create our wonderful Mini Makes & Bakes toddler classes. School holiday craft classes were launched in 2018 and I’ve written a blog for Hotter Shoes with Joanne Dewberry.

Also, I’ve collaborated with some amazing businesses to create the most wonderful parties and events such as Oddbods, Chillout Retreats, Castlepoint, Portobella Parties and The Wedding Crecherz to name but a few!

Thank You, You Wonderful People!

I would like to take this opportunity to thank every single one of you for each like or comment on social media. For booking a party or for asking me to collaborate with you. But above all for sharing the love of Made By Me Craft Parties to your friends and families!

Tank you for supporting Made By Me Craft Parties

I’m so very grateful for all the love you give my sparkly little business. I hope it’s clear how much passion and effort goes into each party and event that I run for you! I certainly couldn’t do it without you!

Win A Place At My 5th Birthday Party

Finally, to celebrate this special birthday, I’m having a PARTY! I’ve given away 8 tickets to customers through 4 different competitions and I’m looking forward to celebrating with them all on the 20th October.

Furthermore, I’ve joined forces with the marvellous Sarah from Biscuits by Sarah B who will be supplying some beautiful biscuits. Samantha from Samantha Prewett Photography will be taking some gorgeous photos to capture the moments and memories of the day. And Rachael from Bakery Boxx is creating a beautiful cake for us to devour!

Here’s to another five years of amazing craft parties. Woop Woop!

What to put in a child's craft kit and where to buy craft supplies

What to Put in a Child’s Craft Box

What should I put in my child’s craft box?  Being the owner of Made By Me Craft Parties my children have access to a whole room full of craft supplies and as a result, they’re eager recipients of my cast-offs!  But what do you do if you’re just starting out?  What on earth do you buy to set up your children with art and craft supplies and start their first craft kit?

What to put in a children's craft box - a selection of washi tapes

Here’s a list of things I think are perfect items for your kit;

Felt tips/coloured pencils
Little Brian Paint Sticks (For toddlers and younger kids – these are AMAZING!)
Plain white card
Coloured paper
Stickers
Glitter (if you can bare it!) Eco glitter is even better.
Beads
Pipe cleaners
Sticky foam shapes and gems
Washi tape (paper Sellotape)
PVA glue
Pritt Stick glue
Scissors (age dependent)
Lollypop sticks
Apron for younger kids
Small pop up bin or similar
Watercolour paints for older kids and paint brushes

Where to buy craft supplies?

It can be an expensive lark getting all these supplies together if you’re just starting out.  So don’t rush off to the expensive craft stores, besides, with a little bit of time and thought you can put together a kit for very little cost.

Firstly, if you have a Scrapstore near you, this is an excellent place to start.  You can buy a bag or box of scrap for a few pounds and fill it with ribbon, wool, paper, card, embellishments, boxes and random bits and bobs for modelling.  Scrapstores often have a shelf of art supplies for sale, such as paints and glue that are good value.

What to put in a craft box - A selection of ribbons available at Made By Me Craft Parties.

Secondly, consider a trip to the likes of Poundland, Wilkinsons, The Range and even Lidl or Aldi.  The art range at Ikea is also fantastic and well priced and of course you can pick up lots of bits online at ebay and Amazon.

You won’t be able to get all the supplies in one place, but you can certainly pick up a few bargains on your travels to get you on your way.  Just choose your materials carefully if you’re buying for older children, it’s worth investing a bit more money into their paint brushes and paper.

What to put in a craft box for children

Finally, you can find ready-made boxes of crafts in lots of the supermarkets and craft stores and these are well worth buying as a birthday present.  Besides, you can then add to them as and when you see any bits you like.

Organising Craft Supplies

Once you’ve bought all your goodies, there are lots of ways to organise them.  Keep an eye out for my next blog post giving you lots of ideas for craft storage and making crafting accessible for your children.

I hope you’re inspired on what to put in your child’s craft box, what else would you add?  Have you found a hidden gem to purchase your craft supplies from?  I’d love to know in the comments.

Photos taken by Samantha Prewett Photography


PS. Some of these links are affiliate links, which means I earn a little bit of money if you make a purchase – thank you for your support. x

How to make a DIY Number 7 Pinata With Joanne Dewberry

The Pinata craze looks here to stay and they’re a popular activity at so many parties.  But what if you want to make your own? Well, party bag queen, turned small business champion Joanne Dewberry has created a rather useful DIY guide for lucky number 7.  So here’s how you can save some pennies, do a spot of recycling and unleash your inner craft queen!

When organising a birthday party for your child the most useful thing you can do is have a theme.  Having a theme helps collate all your ideas, colour schemes and activities.  For Megan’s 7th birthday party she requested a “Woodland Themed”, so we held it at our local Country Park.  Utilising the park and walking opportunities meant the children were entertained leaving us with less to organise.  For me that was an epic win in party planning.  We put up a gazebo, which we filled with activities whilst we waited for everyone to arrive including decorating wooden slice necklaces and a pinata, which was Megan’s idea before going on a scavenger hunt, ending the party with snack boxes and cake plus a play in the park.

Number 7 pinata action

Megan’s pinata suggestion was super last minute, like a couple of days beforehand!  She’d suggested a pinata would be a great way to entertain her friends whilst we waited for everyone to arrive, she was of course right!  After consulting my craft best friend “Pinterest” I realised there wasn’t anything suitable as I didn’t want to be covered in paper mache stressing out so late in the day.  So quite simply I crossed my fingers and botched something together!  Luckily we’d had a few deliveries and I knew the recycling bin was full of big boxes.

This is probably one of the easiest and most entertaining things I’ve ever made.  I literally cut out a giant 7 which I used this as a template to create a second 7.  Using bits of cardboard I built up sides around the first 7.  You can see I have taped card in the inside to make sections. I did this for 2 reasons :

  1. To add a bit of stability to the 7 and stop it being so flimsy.
  2. To stop the sweets from sitting at the bottom of the 7 as they’d have all fallen out in the first smashing. This way the children had to break through 3 sections giving everyone a chance to hit the pinata and win a sweetie treat.

Cardboard Pinata DIY

When I said I’d bodged it together I wasn’t lying!  There is nothing level or neat about this number 7. I used duck tape on the corners alongside lots and lots of sellotape to connect the sections.  Some of the cardboard wasn’t even the same size it was literally held together by tape, lots and lots of tape.

I filled the three sections with sweets and then sellotaped the second 7 on top, which wasn’t exactly pleasing to the eye.  Lucky for us Daddy Moo is a day before Christmas Eve shopper and ends up buying all the naff Christmas paper rejected by us normal shoppers.  I found some holly and berry wrapping paper in the stash which was perfect for the Woodland theme.  Keeping with making this as simple as possible, I wrapped the cardboard number 7 like a present.

It looked amazing hanging up and the children had a blast knocking it down!

This post originally appeared on Charlie Moo’s.  Joanne is a 30 something coffee lover living in rural Dorset with her long suffering partner and three children Charlie (2007), Megan (2008) and Olive (2011).  Joanne owner and creator at Charlie Moo’s specialising in handmade fabric party bags.
Joanne also writes a small business blog www.JoanneDewberry.co.uk, and author of Crafting a Successful Small Business.  In 2010 Joanne was named Dorset Business Mother of the Year and has numerous accolades and awards to her name.  In her spare time she likes to eat and watch crime dramas sometimes at the same time!
DIY Number 7 Pinata Making

5 Top Tips for Taking Photos at your Child’s Birthday Party with Samantha Prewett Photography

You’ve spent hours planning the perfect party; booked the entertainment, sorted a cake, prepared the food and party bags … phew!  Often children’s parties are so busy that it’s hard to preserve decent memories of the special day.  I’ve invited local, leading baby and family photographer Samantha Prewett to share some tops tips that will help you take some lovely photos to remember your party forever.

‘I launched Samantha Prewett Photography just over 5 years ago, I offer beautiful, natural and newborn and family photography across Dorset. As a parent to two little ones aged 9 and 6, I know how important it is to capture all those first memories to treasure for a lifetime.’

1. Take some photos before the party guests arrive

The chances are you will be very busy during the party, so by planning a little time beforehand to take some photos of the birthday child, party set up and any important family members who can arrive early, you will be saving yourself some time and be calmer for the party.

Party Photography Tips - Take photos of the set up

2. Social media etiquette

If your children are inviting friends from nursery or school you probably won’t know all of them. It is always polite to ask their parents when they drop them off if they mind them being in photos, especially if you plan to post photos online. As a general rule, I won’t post any photos of children on my social media if I am not “Facebook friends” with with their parents. Also don’t forget to check your privacy setting regularly.

Party Photography Tips - social media etiquette

3.  Set up a DIY photobooth

If your children are a little older, a great way to make sure lots of photos are taken during the party is to get them to take some themselves. All you need for this is a tablet with camera function, something to mount it into, and some props which you can either make or buy from fancy dress shops. There are lots of ideas online and you can even download a photo booth app!

Party Photography Tips - Set up a photos booth

4. Take lots of natural photos

During the party, take lots of photos of the children playing/crafting/what ever they are doing for their party, without getting them to “pose”. Natural, in the moment photos make the perfect keepsakes and are lovely to look back on.

Party Photography Tips - take natural photos

5. Print your photos!

My best tip is to make sure you print off the photos you take. In this digital age we take so many photos, but how many of us still print them? There is nothing more satisfying than looking back through printed photo albums or scrapbooks, and your children will love doing this as they get older. Trust me, mine do. You can even let the party magic live on longer by getting your child to make a party scrapbook with you. They can stick in some of their cards or small decorations that you might want to keep too and put their own mark on it by writing or drawing in it to.

Party Photography Tips - print your photos

I hope you enjoyed my tips and will try some of these ideas at your child next birthday party.  I would love to know how you get on, and don’t forget me when you need someone to capture those extra special parties and events, I do that as well as newborn and family photography sessions and I love the opportunity to do something a little different.

www.samanthaprewettphotography.co.ukTop Tips for party Photography

close up of a rainbow of colouring pencils

Printkick Arts and Craft Kits Review

Over the summer break, I was lucky enough to be sent some lovely craft goodies to review by Printkick, who are a small family business established in 2001.

We were sent a lovely range of children’s arts and craft kits which I decided to take with us on a trip to Yorkshire to visit my family.  Printkick are usually found producing and selling personalised printed mugs for small business in the UK, but the launch of their new website has brought a few surprises!

Printkick sent us lots of goodies!

Izzy (8) and Austin (5) couldn’t wait to get their mitts on the box of delights, first out was the gorgeous colouring books.  Izzy plumped for the grown up flowers and plants colouring, she loved that the coloured pencils came as part of the book which is perfect for crafting on the go (or in our case on holiday).  Austin picked the hard back kids colouring book.  We loved that the paper for both books was good quality and thick and the colouring was only on one side of the paper.  Austin’s book also had plenty of pages at the back for his own doodles and pictures.

Printkick Colouring books
Beautiful colouring pencils and a hardback book for colouring on the go

Next up, we cracked open the fabulous wooden craft box.  It has crayons, watercolours, rubber and pencil sharpener inside and the wooden box is very grown up and perfect fro travelling.  As there was only one paintbrush, I brought along a couple of my own artists brushes.  Izzy decided to use the colouring book to paint in, which worked brilliantly!

Printkick paining set in a wooden box
Beautiful grown up painting box

As soon as I saw the the artist box I knew what I wanted to do with it and when I arrived home I sprinkled a little Made By Me Craft Party magic!  I used a little washi tape, some gems, paper flowers and a wooden flamingo to add a summer vibe to the box.  I think the plain wooden box would make an excellent birthday party activity to decorate with paint, stickers and gems and then they could be used as a party favour.

Personalised Art Box
Summer themed art box

We were also sent a cute pre printed little fabric bag and a backpack which both came with fabric pens.  These bags would make a lovely activity for younger children if you’re doing a DIY craft party or they would make perfect party bags to fill with a few goodies and of course cake!

Unfortunately, the tote bag was a bit young for my children, so we didn’t try it out.  If you’ve got a pre-schooler who’d like to try it out, pop a comment below and I’ll pick a name out of a hat at the end of September.

Printkick colour your own backpack
Colour your own backpack
Printkick tote bag
Decorate your own mini tote bag

We had so much fun with all the arts and craft kits, the kids said they were ‘awesome’.  I think they’re perfect to pack for travelling and as party favours – they’re useful, aesthetically pleasing and a good price too.

I also really like that Printkick have charitable and environmental commitments, they recently ran a campaign with the ADHD Foundation for Neurodiversity  , the umbrella project was simply beautiful and inspiring.  Printkick have also launched a new eco-friendly products range, which is an issue close to my heart (I did a geography degree back in the day!)

Thank you Printkick for the opportunity to play with your lovely products!  We had a great time.  I think we’ll be packing the colouring for our trip abroad later in the year.

Thanks for reading and don’t forget to comment below if you’d like the mini colour in tote bag!

Printkick
Craft Party

Introducing: A Spa of Our Own Craft Parties

I’m so excited to launch the Spa of Our Own craft party.  This party option is available to all age groups and includes the following activities –

  • Bath Bomb making
  • Lip gloss making
  • Make-up bag decorating
  • Flip Flop decorating (older teens and adults only)

The child or teen party is an hour and a half and for the adult option, I allow 2 hours so you can spend a bit longer making and perfecting your creations.

You’ll make 2 bath bomb muffins, in your chosen colour and scent, adding some beautiful dried flowers on the top.  You’ll also package them up beautifully and add a tag so you can gift them if you’d like to.

Next up, you’ll learn to make your own lip gloss in a colour of your choice and then put it into gemstone pots which you’ll decorate and embellish.

Make Your Own Beautiful Bath Bombs

All materials are thoroughly tested for fun factor and quality by my team of keen crafters (ie my children and their friends).

Craft Party

We take party testing very seriously here at MBM HQ

Don’t just take my word for it, here’s what one of the mums said after her daughter’s Spa Craft Party

“Thank you so much, Lexy for a fabulous party! Hope and her friends had a great time and they all went home with beautiful flip-flops and lip gloss. Love how organised you are and all the tiny creative details. Looking forward to having one of your lovely parties again in the future.”

Pamper party craft activity

All set up for eager 8-year-olds to make lip gloss

 

To book your party email me at lexy@madebymeparties.co.uk or pop over to the contact me page

Do you need more spa craft party inspiration?  Check out my post where I organised a pamper party for my daughter.