My son has been obsessed with super heroes and saving the day since he was two. He recently turned four so it has been going on for awhile. For his fourth birthday, when he told me he wanted a super hero party, I decided to do just that. My actual line of thought was, “Of course you want a super hero party, why didn’t I think of that…oh wait…”
I went with typical thoughts of Avengers, Batman, Spiderman or even just picking one avenger but then I thought “How awesome would it be to give the kids custom capes and utility belts for the treat bags!” Unfortunately for my husband (and my already limited time schedule) I usually get VERY creative at this point.
I decided that I wanted to do the capes, utility belts with pockets for a small disc weapon or item of their choice and belt loops on them so kids could put their swords on their belts. Also included in the must-have list was an epic battle with kids vs adults, a cityscape background for photo shoots, and masks the kids could decorate. I know, it was pretty ambitious for a Noob but if you know me then you know that is sort of what I do lol.
I ran the idea by the birthday boy, who after getting really excited that he was having a birthday completely disregarded anything else I said about it. SO I started getting ideas for how to make or create what I wanted for the party. I wrote it all down then started the invites. I decided that red and yellow and black were going to be the main colors and went from there.
I wanted to do a comic book style super hero party. I actually didn’t decide this until I created the invite. I have a slight advantage. I am a graphic designer so I get to play in fun programs and design some neat things but if you want to make your own invites then Word, or good old fashion crafting can help you create some pretty neat invites too. They have a TON of fun scarpbooking paper and edge cutters that would work great! If you combine that with some stamps you have the makings of a very cute invite.
The Treat Bags
Since I was giving capes and utility belts as treat bags we had to have weapons and masks as well. I didn’t want to try to create a ton of masks so I ordered some paper ones in bulk from Oriental Trading and set out all my craft stuff for kids so they could decorate their own. Feathers, markers, crayons, glue and glitter! It was a huge hit with all the kids and my carpet now sparkles very prettily.
They also got to decorate their own mini frisbees…excuse me…flying discs of doom. I ordered a set of mini flying discs from Oriental Trading and cut and glued white circles in the middle. This created a blank canvas for the kids to decorate how they wanted and then I left out the glossy Modge Podge so parents could help seal their artwork. These work great against evil plastic cups stacked in pyramid formations and also small action figure bad guys, shins and the occasional (and unfortunate) cup of milk.
Capes and belts were made with a few yards of fabric in pink for girls and black for boys, some yellow ribbon, elastic string, felt, glue and a button for decoration. I used a cape my son had purchased from Walmart as a template and traced an outline on the fabric with chalk and left room to hem the edges. I can’t sew to save my life so I left that to my husband. Don’t be stereotyping, men can sew too and he can do it a lot better than I can lol.
While he was sewing capes I was hemming the edges of ribbon and gluing velcro to the either end so kids could fasten them around their waists. I left the soft velcro side facing out and made it longer than the rough itchy side.
Pockets were made using similarly colored bandanas. I know I could have used the fabric, but i wasn’t sure I would have enough and one bandana made eight pockets and meant I only had to sew three sides. If you saw the sewing lines on the pockets you would know why I don’t sew lol.
After I had made all the pockets complete with fold down flap, I created a ton of loops using the fabric and then sewed them on to the back of the pockets. This allowed them to slide on the ribbon belt easily in case they needed to be washed. Attach a small button to help weigh down the flap and look nice and viola! You have a super hero pouch!
I used a paper template that I printed and cut out of card stock paper to trace and cut the star burst and letters for the back of the capes. Coupons at Jo-Anns made it all possible! One yard of Red and one yard of Purple felt for the star bursts and then one sheet (25¢ for one sheet) of yellow made two letters. Lots of tracing in chalk and cutting but so worth the time!
Fun and Games
After kids made their own masks and flying discs of doom we made sure everyone had a sword attached to their sword loop on their new utility belts. Then I asked if they wanted cupcakes but upon hearing the cheer of cupcakes, a band of villains emerged from the kitchen! Lead by the Dread Pirate Argon (aka Daddy) these villains announced that the super heroes would have to go through them to get the cupcakes.
There was an epic battle that day for the fate of the cupcakes. The villains were tough…and bigger. This did not stop our heroes. (Nerf) Swords clashed and found their targets and soon the villains were slain and the super heroes victorious! There was much celebrating and cheering and the cupcakes were saved…and then eaten along with the cake pops.
A handful of adults were brave enough to volunteer to be beaten by nerf swords held by small children. It was quite the event and the kids (and even the adults) had a great time! The adults all “died” one by one and the kids all cheered when all the villains were “dead’. My son decided that his daddy needed to be stabbed again while he was down and my daughter held his legs lol. So much fun!
We created a cityscape background out of cardboard, some old paint we had and duct tape both black and yellow for windows. My husband did the cutting out and painting and he and a few friends finished it up. We used cut out Bam!, Ka-Pow! and Pow! signs taped to weapons and had some fun taking pictures. The kids loved posing in front of the city in their costumes.
We plan on reusing the cityscape but we are going to make it more secure first. It was SO much fun
I actually run (or am starting to try to run) a cake pop company so I had to make some fun fetti cake pops! Writing Bam! and Pow! on them tied them into the theme of course. Not all people or kids like cake pops, hard to believe I know, so I made cupcakes too! I actually designed the cityscape and then used my Silhouette cutting machine to print and cut them out. It was also used to create the Bam! and Pow! cupcake toppers. Add Yellow buttercream frosting sprinkled with a custom mix of black, yellow and red sprinkles and you have super hero tasty goodness.
Since I decided to do capes and belts as treat bags there wasn’t going to be any real candy to pass out. This was just unacceptable to me so I decided to get the twirly suckers. Who doesn’t love those things. Oriental Trading (I love that place) online has them in bulk for a decent price. I couldn’t JUST pass out suckers though so I decided to make them the “Thank you for coming” item.
Using my trusty cutting machine sidekick I made super hero thank you suckers! Complete with cape and mask and a thank you for celebrating message. You can cut straight strips of paper for the masks and cut your own cape shapes then use a hole punch just as easily.
The party was SO much fun for all the kids and adults. Everyone felt like a super hero and had the costumes to go with it. I can honestly say it was the best birthday (that I have thrown) ever! I can’t wait to do another one!