Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Emma's 11th Harry Potter Birthday Party

For my nieces 11th birthday party, all she wanted was a Harry Potter party. Emma thought it would be fitting since when Harry turned 11, his whole magical life began! My sister Alison isn't a huge Harry Potter fan. She likes it well enough but has only just started reading the books. That did not stop her from wanting to be as authentic as possible with the party and for that she needed two things, me and to watch the movies a million times! Haha! She asked for my help and I didn't even hesitate. I love me some Harry Potter. 

It was a HUGE DIY project, but it was really fun and both my sisters and I spent a lot of time together to make it happen. I mostly helped with the creation/food part and Kari helped Alison pull it all together and decorate. The three of us are a good balance, I think. We got everything done and it was a wonderful event.

When you walked up to the house, we had a large trunk, a vintage suitcase (which I bought at a thrift store years ago, used all the time, and then passed to Shepherd. He uses it for all of our family trips.) A birdcage from my baby shower and an owl and scarf that Alison picked up. That paint color was mixed by me and painted by Emma (which I had to recreate because I never made enough paint, and no one knew what I had done to recreate the color. Probably not the most efficient but Emma did a great job!) Kari was our official cutter, she's a cosmetologist so she is great with scissors. She helped cut out so many letters and logos. I suck with scissors (darn, lefty!) so I was thankful that I got a pass on that job. Alison painted the letters and I found and printed out the logos. If you are here looking for inspiration for your party, when you google images google "(image description) vector" or "(image description) PNG". They'll print out at a better quality when you print them! 

Alison hung some brick background on the door so of course I made Shepherd Grawp take a picture in front of it. He arrived with a club but quickly exchanged that for a wand. He was obsessed!

I had to post this because I love his intense face. He had just finished casting a spell. ;)

Oh look, we're being greeted/threatened by Bellatrix Lestange! Alison totally pulled her off. It was amazing!

We made sure to capture a picture before things got crazy. Bryan was Sirius Black, I was Tonks (I had a leather jacket, but it was waaaay too hot that day. So I put on a cape. Don't hate that I'm not spot on. It's good enough!) and then my precious Grawp! I handmade the little vest and cut out the loin cloth. Bryan broke a huge walking stick for Grawps club. 

Just to the left of our family picture is the Ollivanders set up, complete with cobwebs, spider, candles, another one of my birdcages from Shepherd's baby shower and a porcelain owl that Young House Love inspired me to buy years ago! We made all of those wands! Alison bought the wood, cut them (and even sanded them smooth!) and we used hot glue for the detail on it. Kari helped to paint and Alison finished them all up. They were a total hit!

We found these amazing netting pieces at the 99 Cent Store, and Alison found some free printables online to hang. Bryan got one and photoshopped his face on it for the Sirius poster! So awesome!

I'm so bummed I didn't notice that the garland and fallen down. Darn it! Emma cut out the Honeydukes letters and I painted the sign. Alison picked out all the candy and found the free printables and I helped her put the table together. Kari, Emma and I all worked together to get the treat bags (with sticker Honeydukes labels) ready. Kari and Alison decorated the wall and blew the balloons up to really create a fun vibe in the store. I loved the little tags for the candy! Alison found a lot of the free printables on Pinterest. Here are some closeups: 

Alison freehanded the Mischief Managed sign which I thought was super cute, and she put all the cobwebs everywhere. I loved the little touches!

Alison bought the Hogwarts banner and I printed out all the house signs. Alison put them all on appropriate colored paper and put gold paint around them. She really went the extra mile! I think Kari helped with those too, not sure. She draped the same netting from the 99 cent store around the fireplace and put the "fire" lanterns on either side of the Hogwarts banner. I found those while we were picking up other items at the Halloween store and she was like Oh my gosh! Those are perfect!! The way she styled it all felt very Hogwarts. Both of my sisters have such a good design eye. Somehow I was not given that gene. 

I made sure to print out the Dumbledore's Army sign cause I'm a huge nerd. It had to be hanging up in the Hogwarts portion of the house! :)

Alison had a really casual food spread that was perfect, I think. It was a late afternoon party so it was just light appetizers. Chips and dip and finger foods. My favorite part was the cauldron cakes! She put a platter in a cauldron and topped it with chocolate cupcakes. Such a great idea! We found the large cauldron from the Halloween store. 

Alison and Kari quickly whipped up the Three Broomsticks section for beverages and a cheese, fruit and salami spread. There was also various sodas that Alison had free printables to attach. A great touch!

Of course, there had to be an authentic 11th birthday cake! Alison and Emma baked it, Kari iced it and Alison wrote a la Hagrid. So precious. Emma loved her 11th birthday party and we had such a great time helping to pull it off!! 

I swiped this from Alison's Instagram (@thealisonhoward). Mark was Voldemort, Alison was Bellatrix, Emma was Hermione (complete with Time Turner, gifted by me. Sorry, I had to mention it. She was so happy with her birthday gift and it really 'completed' her costume! Brody was Harry Potter, and sweet Kyndall was Dobby! Alison DIY'd her costume and seriously, Kyndall was such a good sport. She is typically a total princess, girly girl so this was amazing of her! We were proud!

Happy Birthday, Emma! We all love you so much!!!!

ps. We also determined that for my 30th birthday, we were going to have a Harry Potter themed birthday party, to make sure all our hard work doesn't go to waste. I'm already pretty excited about it and I'm only 28. YAY!


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