Sunday, September 26, 2010

4th Birthday Little Picasso Art Party!

Yesterday was my little guy's  
4th Birthday!

Because he loves to color and paint,
he choose an Art Theme for his party!

And this was my inspiration:

"Every child is an artist.
The problem is how to remain an artist once he grows up."
- Pablo Picasso

I made it into a little canvas 
to match his invitations :)

I had SO much fun with this theme!
Bright splashes of color,
Creative, fun, artful touches,
crayons, chalkboards, markers...
(all on sale for back-to-school time!)

and artist palettes...
and I baked palette cookies, too!
Of course, for starving little artists,
I wanted lots of yummy, sweet treats for them to eat!

So baked a heap of delicious treats:

Giant Rice Krispie pops on sticks with M&Ms,

Lollipop Cookies...

All sweetly packaged with colorful rainbow-like ribbon!

Making lots and lots of yummy cookies!!
I didn't have a crayon-shaped cutter so I made my own template!

Sugar cookie letter "A"s (for my son's name)
and number 4-shaped cookies in varying sizes...

 Cookies to match my artist canvas...
(I made the design in Illustrator and had them printed on edible icing
and then I attached the images to sugar cookies I made and iced)...

they turned out better than I could have hoped! 

Don't they look almost TOO pretty to eat!

Getting things set inside before the party!

All handmade {with love!} by me!

We held the party in our backyard so Andrew and his friends
could just run carefree and play.
Happy Birthday Banner created by Jill @ Peas and Thank You's!
Crayon and Number 4 Balloons on the mailbox.
A fun way to greet party guests!

Handmade crayon directional posterboard signs let guests know where to go.
Since this was a party for 1-7 year olds,
I didn't think they'd want to sit and do arts and crafts on a beautiful fall day.

 So I planned just one structured activity: 
every child made a handprint canvas! 

I purchased a package of 10, blank 8x10" canvases at Michael's with a 40% off coupon. 
With various acrylic paints that I had on hand,
I hand-painted every canvas a different, bright solid color.

Each child had their hand rolled in white Tempera paint 
and then we pressed them down on their canvas color of choice!

A few of the handprints drying.

This was everyone's FAVORITE part of the party!
Not only did it make for a fun activity,
but it also created a beautiful keepsake for each child to take home 
as a special memento of their fun-filled day together!
The parents LOVED this! :)
(so did I!!)

The little artists pose proudly with their canvases!
We had a little table set up with the paint tray, roller, and canvases...
and a hose and towels nearby to wash up afterwards
(the added benefit was that their little hands were clean to eat!).

I bought them all bright-colored art aprons from Oriental Trading Company so no one would mess up their clothing
(they each got to take one of the aprons home with them, too).

They had a blast playing in my son's playhouse mostly,
and on the swingset and climbers.
We put out his Tonka trucks, bright colored balls,
basketball hoop, various toys and ride-ons...
it was a day filled with play!

Above: The birthday boy (left) and his friend Jack (right).
I fell in love with his special birthday t-shirt the moment I saw it!  
It's an adorable appliquéd artist palette from Noodle & Meatball.
You must check out their other designs - all equally as precious!

The playhouse became party-central!!

I set up art easels in the yard

We had chalkboard placemats that I bought off on ebay and repainted,
dry erase boards that I bought in the $1 bin at Target...

and we made a chalkboard table runner using brown craft paper,
cut to runner size, and painted with chalkboard paint!
(you can see one on the table below:)

I set out lots of little buckets of colored chalk so guests could doodle while they ate.

I used various buckets for LOTS of things!
I ordered some online and picked some up at Target
in all colors and sizes.
They were bright and colorful,
and came in so handy!

I used them for some of the kids' drinks, too...

and we filled one of his Radio Flyer wagons with ice
and used that, too :)

Everything was coordinated with labels and tags.
Here are a couple closeups of the water bottle labels...

We had two buffets: one for food and one for sweets!

For the kids, I made mini sandwiches and sloppy joes...

and topped them with handmade flag picks!

I made the little flags using scrapbook papers, wooden craft picks, and printing some (double-sided) on the computer...then simply gluing them onto the wooden picks.

Below is the Starving Artists sweets table!

Edible pretzel crayons (dipped in colorful candy melts and wrapped in crayon-like wrappers),
varieties of cookies (see above),
GIANT Rice Krispie treats on popsicle sticks (with colorful M&M candies inside!)
Birthday Snack mix (my own special recipe!)
Fruit Loop sticks (great for wee little ones!)
colorful Rock Candy sticks
Giant Lollipops, 
mini lollipops
Skittles candy
Custom made pinwheels from Twirlie Whirlies (doubled as favors!)
old-fashioned striped paper straws from Fort and Field
Chalkboard labels and signs from Braden's Grace
and even a gumball machine!

Custom toppers by Jill @ Peas & Thank yous!
Custom paintbrush chocolates from Mandies Candies!

Adorable little treat bags from Fort and Field to take home the candies, chocolates and cookies!

His cake was adorable!

With fondant dots and crayons!

The favor table featured a crayon wreath I made 
using inexpensive wooden embroidery hoops and hot-glued on crayons!

On the bright-colored buckets, I used oval, chalkboard labels
to resemble a crayon wrapper...
and wrote on them with bright-colored chalk markers.
The best part is that the labels are removable and reusable! 
Chalkboard labels and signs from Braden's Grace

I also made alphabet-shaped crayons
with unwrapped, broken crayons that I melted down
in alphabet silicone molds
as part of their favors.

(The Crayola crayons were on sale for 25 cents a box!)

And each child also received a box of crayons,
a few containers of party-size Playdoh,
and a colorful art apron,
all tucked inside a reusable mini canvas bag
to tote home their canvas handprints.

The totes were the perfect size,
and they can be reused for toting their little storybooks,
as Halloween treat bags,
for carrying a special stuffed teddy bear or a collection of cars...
there's virtually no limit to what little ones can use it for.
(this mommy loves practical, useful favor gifts!)

The totes had custom splat tags in four different colors
Jill did an OUTSTANDING job putting together many of the custom touches for this party!
She did a great job of bringing my crazy vision to life!
{thank you, Jill!}

I hope you enjoyed the look at the party!

It was a fantastic day filled with close family and friends
creating, laughing, playing 

and celebrating our little guy's 
4th Birthday!


  1. WOW it looks great. I love all the details and those cookies must have taken hours, but are so beautiful. And I think I might have to make some handprints of my little boys just for fun.

  2. WOW WOW WOW. You went all out and I LOVE IT! I am your newest follower. Hope you follow back! :)

  3. I am blown away by all the things at Andrew's party!! How awesome! You did a great job planning everything!

    Looks like everyone had a great time.

  4. Judy!!!! What a fabulous party planner you are. You have such wonderful ideas! I love the Picaso quote that you tied through the whole party. A perfect party theme. I really enjoyed my "tour". Happy 4th Birthday Andrew!!

  5. Judy, you are amazing...your attention to detail blows me away. Awesome! I love those cookies. I will be back to just look some more when I have a bit more time. I want to just take every single picture in.

    Andrew is a VERY blessed little boy!


  6. Miss!!!!!! What an A.MAZ.ING party!!!!! What happy, wonderful memories you'll all treasure in your hearts :)

  7. I tried to post yesterday but couldn't so I'm trying again today! I LOVE THE PARTY. It's wonderful, I love it all. I never would have thought about making the water bottle labels! You did such a beautiful job on the cookies, the whole thing is amazing.
    love, Vic

  8. And, I forgot to mention my absolute fav thing......the chocolate paint brushes!

  9. Amazing!!! I have to say, I adore the handprint idea. Kiddo's bday is coming up in December, and we might do this, but on t-shirts for everyone. What an incredible party - looks like all the artists were not left to starve ;)

  10. You amaze me! What an adorable party! So much attention to detail! It turned out just perfect! I wish I had that kind of talent!!

  11. Judy, just returned from the bank and and the endless paperwork dealing with the identity fraud. Lord have mercy!!

    Sweet friend, you burn those candles today and don't save them. Celebrate today, Judy, it is all we have. None of us are guaranteed of tomorrow. Make this day special....burn your candles and think of your blessings.

    Sending love,

  12. Judy, I think you are the best party planner Ever!! You should go into business, I would hire you in a second. The cookies are amazing...everything is. Your little one is so lucky to have you as a Mommy.


  13. LOVE, LOVE, LOVE!! And would love to feature your party on my blog, too! I'm working on an art party as well, for my new children's birthday party business, Shindig -- such a great concept for a children's party! I don't think you could have done a BETTER job! FANTASTIC!

  14. How did you do the cookies with the writing? Amazing! I always thought I went all out, but you definitely take the cake!!! I love EVERYTHING! Especially the paint palette cookies!!

  15. I am SO impressed! What a lucky little boy you have!

  16. Judy! I have been so excited to see this party! Your style and your design always amaze me. You have a signature look with everything you create and I LOVE it. There are so many details that I've had to scroll through the post several times already and I know I'll be back. ;) You really should sell your baked goods. They look better than professional cookies! They are unique and perfect. Every single part of the party was adorable and SPECIAL. The party colors made it really fun. I want my boys to make a handprint canvas now, lol. The cake is super cute too. I know Andrew had the BEST birthday! You add such warmth and love to your family. It is very noticeable how much you LOVE and how much heart you put into your work. And that is a great blessing. It enriches your family's life...forever. <3

  17. Ohhh, forgot a couple more things! I'm so happy you were able to use peas and thank you company. I just adore Jill. <3 She does beautiful work too.

    AND the party gifts that your guests got are incredible! What good quality treasures for your guests to take home. LOVE the tote idea.

  18. This is just gorgeous! I want this for my next party! The cookies are just beautiful! Too pretty to eat!

  19. Judy I never could have imagined such a fabulous art party, and I am so lucky to have been able to help you with the paper touches! I absolutely can not get over the palette cookies, how amazing are you?!!!

  20. Those paint pallet cookies are amazing!

  21. This is fabulous!! You never dissapoint! Looks like everything turned out perfect and I'm sure everyone had a fabulous time! You've done it again, or otdone yourself again. I am totally blown away, as someone else stated.

    Love the sunspot pic of the little guy at the bottom with his friend! He's so lucky to have such a Fab mom!!

    Hope you're enjoying Fall!

  22. As a connoisseur of all things artsy for kids and the creator of a new children's theme party business, I was so happy to see this party of yours!! You did an AMAZING Job! So much work, I know, but he'll have these memories forever!! I did a little post on my blog about it, too! Thanks for inspiring us all!

  23. An absolutely amazing party...and SO much fun for all those's perfect! I love every detail of this party! My kids are too old for this one now, but I am definitely sharing it on my FB page for all those moms with younger ones!

  24. What an awesome party! I just stumbled upon your blog and have really enjoyed looking through it (totally fabulous playhouse!) Happily joining as a follower!

  25. wow!!!!! This was a wonderful party. I adore this theme! Those pallete cookies are awesome! Great job. New follower. Found you from Ellie Town.

  26. Oh. my. lands! That is one incredible party. I love all the details and color. I think my favorite part is the take home favors. The homemade crayons are so fun. Very creative and quite the memory maker for all the lucky guests and your family.

  27. Super cute and creative party! I would love for you to link it up to my party:

  28. Hi Judy, can I show some of your work on my blog? Indonesian mom would like this, including me:)

  29. This comment has been removed by the author.

  30. This comment has been removed by the author.

  31. I featured your party today:

  32. Holy CRAP girl! You have talent! That party was a-MAZING!?!? I can't believe all the details. You did a really incredible job. I've never seen a little artist party before either and I LOVE it : )

  33. Hi...Your post really got me thinking man..... an intelligent piece ,I must say. Get more information about Art party .

  34. This is the most amazing and creative kids bday party I have seen in a long long time!! Love it!
    Do you have a theme for 5 yet??

  35. I have just tied a note to my kids and dropped them off at the orphanage. Clearly I am not as cut out for motherhood as I thought.

    Seriously though - AMAZING! I love all the details, the artist's palettes cookies are my favourite, but it all looks incredible. Please tell me you ran yourself ragged to achieve this? I stress myself out every year about the kids' parties and don't seem to be able to get over it, and mine are no-where near as designed as this. Bet they all loved it!

  36. I love everything about this party...will definitely keep in mind for my son's next birthday party. Also, those palette cookies will be made for my very dear artist friend whose birthday is coming up. She will be elated!

  37. I've been trying to think of a creative theme for my daughter's 8th birthday party. I'm over the destination parties and wanted to do something at our house. This is such a great party you put together. So unique and creative. My daughter loves art so this will be perfect for her. Thank you for the inspiration!

    -Allison R.

  38. I was lured by the artist palette cookies and stayed to read about the lengths you went to for this party - so impressive. It must have taken you ages!

  39. I absolutely love how adorable you made everything! I actually found your blog through google when I was looking for crayon cookies and it brought me here. These are so cute!! I was writing a post about kids cookies as get well gifts and featured your cookies there along with a link to your site. If you want me to remove it, let me know and I will!! They are just too adorable! Here is my post:

  40. wow. . over the top beautiful and special. coming from Pinterest. . we are going to try to make the artist palette cookies this week. . .any suggestions to help me and my kids?? :)

  41. LOVE this party!! found it while searching for ideas for one of my boys art party in Nov.! I will def. be using a lot of these - thank you!! Can you explain how you did hte canvas cookies, those are just too cute!

  42. Do you have a recipe/how-to for the palette cookies? Thanks!!

  43. This is absolutely fantastic! I'm so thankful for pinterest...I never would have found you without it! :) Totally saving this idea for some future parties... Just finished a Gingerbread House party for one of mine. So much fun to plan them!


  44. It’s in point of fact a nice and useful piece of info. I’m satisfied that you just shared this useful info with us. Please keep us informed like this. Thank you for sharing

    kids franchise business

  45. I like the idea so much, I hope that this birthday party theme won't be so expensive. I really wanna try this for My Twins Birthday! kids birthday parties nyc rocks!

  46. Next time we do an Art Party theme we will certainly add the palette cookies - Thank you for the inspiration - They do look almost too good to eat but who could resist!

  47. Brilliant idea. We may work it in with our reptile party this weekend.

  48. This is nice. This would be one cute and fun activity to do.

    Canvas Prints

  49. I just love this kind of party. The canvas cookies are brilliant. I am also planning out an event and these tips will probably provide help up to some extent.

  50. You know you have given me the fantastic idea through this blog. Because next week my son’s birthday is also coming and he is also fond of paintings. I think now I can plan the best birthday party as well art party for giving him a surprise. Please tell me what best party hotel nyc; you had booked for your party?


Thanks so much for your comment! I love hearing from you!