Superheros: the theme for my daughter’s first birthday party demonstrated how special she and the children in attendance always will be. Unfortunately, I quickly realized that many companies tend to cater towards “boys,” sending the message that girls can’t be superheroes nor idolize them, but this could not be further from the truth. All children should feel empowered and super special, especially my little girl, With this in mind, I thought of creative ways to not simply promote the commercialized superheroes but the hero within each child, regardless of one’s gender.
To help out other parents who are eager to put together an unforgettable superhero party for their little girl or just a gender neutral party where all children feel like superheroes, I’ve provided some of the companies and ideas I employed for Quinn’s party. (All images can be enlarged after clicking on them, and the links to the company web sites are in purple)
Illustrations: Rather than use existing superheroes, why not make it extra special with a personalized illustration of your child as a superhero? Sandy Ford, of Sandy Ford Design is an awesome illustrator I located through Etsy. She does far more than just illustrations of superheroes in your child’s likeness, and her prices are extremely reasonable. I was able to get an entire party package with the digital invitations, poster, coloring page, thank you card, banner, the iron on for my super mommy t-shirt, etc. for approximately $25. She’s in London and I’m in the US; nevertheless, I received everything electronically within 48 hours, and I certainly will use her services in the future for other illustrations.
I found another company, Clip Artopia, that supplies superhero illustrations at nominal fees, ranging from $2.50 to $5.00 to use as you wish. Since I have a digital design background, I was able to modify some of the illustrations to have them reflect the likeness of the children attending Quinn’s party.
Superhero Capes: Though most of the children attending the party came dressed as their favorite superheros, the birthday girl’s outfit had to be original. I located another fabulous company through Etsy, Shooting Kisses, who makes superhero capes with many colors to choose from for toddlers, older children and adults. The cape was a little over $50, and there are many companies to use at a cheaper rate, but it was well worth it. The stitching on the cape and emblem is professionally done, the satin material is high quality, and the cape is reversible.Quinn certainly will be wearing this cape for Halloween or just for fun.
Yes, I’m one of those “over the top” party planning moms, and I wanted to send the children home with something special as well, so I ordered a party package with capes and matching masks from Klassi Kreations, another Etsy shop. Each set was approximately $15. They arrived ahead of schedule, were good quality and a big hit with all of the children.
I also got a little creative and purchased some materials from Joann’s Fabric and made my own cape for the special occasion after following the free instructions for making a superhero cape from Sewing With Nancy. I modified it some to fit an adult, but it is an awesome resource. Just to give you an idea of how easy it was, I created the cape with my arm in a cast from a broken wrist and used “no sew” tape to get it done quickly. (In the picture, you can actually see the cast sleeve I created)
Personalized crown: This little superhero needed a crown to top off her outfit, and Oh So Sweet Creations, another company found through Etsy, was perfect! I was able select the appropriate colors and design with no problem. This company has crowns for many occasions, and I’ll more than likely use them again.
Personalized Party Supplies: Though I was able to use the banner and other materials from Sandy Ford Design, I was able to take it a step further by personalizing the table center pieces and plates through Birthday Express
Personalized Birthday Cake: I looked at several specialty superhero cakes which were fabulous but very expensive. Then my husband said, “What about BJ’s; don’t they have birthday cakes?” BJ’s Wholesale actually has really good cakes with butter cream icing, so I was able to take the illustration I got through Sandy Ford Design and have it put on Quinn’s cake. It turned out great!
DIY Projects: Superhero Shields: These are relatively easy to find by simply doing a search online, but the quality may not be the best because many of them are at a low resolution. So if you have Adobe Photoshop or another program, you can recreate them if you need a larger size. I was able to make the iron-on shield for my daughter’s shirt as well as some of the party favors.
Coloring Book: Getting the coloring page from Sandy Ford Design and illustrations from Clip Artopia inspired me to create coloring books for each child. Adobe Photoshop actually has a feature where you can take just about any illustration and turn it into a sketch for coloring.
Tattoos: I was also able to use the illustrations to order special temporary tattoos from Sticker You for the children. This company allows you to upload your own illustrations or to use illustrations they have available. You can also order stickers and other products as well to customize party favors.
Party Games: Rather than pin the tail on the donkey, I customized the game and made it “Pin the Mask on Super Quinn.” I located superhero mask templates and modified them through Adobe Photoshop and printed out a large poster, laminated and mounted it myself.
Another game was a maze for helping Super Quinn get to her cake.
Bubbles: Children love bubbles, but I’m sure they love personalized bubbles even more. I used the illustrations provided by Sandy Ford Design and was able to print them out on sticker paper and adhere them to the bubbles I purchased at Target for just $2.00 for six.
Place mats: Superheroes have to eat, but sometimes it gets a little messy, so I created customized place mats using contact paper and scrap book paper as a party favor that the children can use long after the party is over.
Party Favor Bags: I want the children to always remember how super they are, so I customized superhero canvas bags with iron-on superhero shields and a little puffy paint and glitter for the girls for them not carry around all of there super items and feel empowered.
Party Location: Even though children are able to have fun at a party just about anywhere, if you are in the Philadelphia, PA area and looking for a place that is age appropriate for a one year old up to age ten, Kix and Giggles is awesome. It is reasonably priced, and you have the option of paying a bit more to make the party private. Though there were additional fees, they made all of the arrangements for Spiderman to make an appearance as well as a face painter. They also have a toddler area which is perfect for younger children.
It certainly was a lot of work planning Quinn’s party, but it was also a lot of fun. I hope that some of the information I provided is helpful for you in planning a superhero party for you child.
All the best,
Supermom aka Tanya 🙂