Here at The Digi Dame Party Shoppe, we absolutely love Lewis Carroll's Alice in Wonderland.
I first saw Disney's film adaptation of the story as a young girl in the early 70's. I have loved it ever since. My kids are also big fans of the movie, which makes it a rainy-day staple at our place.
We have just styled and hosted a pretty Alice-themed tea party for our new teenager. To provide you with some fun wonderland-party inspiration, we're sharing the details in this post, on how we celebrated.
I have been baking and decorating my kids' celebration cakes since they were babies. The first cake I ever made was my eldest's Christening cake (some twelve years ago - and it wasn't very good). I have made all of their cakes myself ever since. My amateur cake decorating skills have improved somewhat in that time.
This Wonderland cake was a banana cake (on my daughter's request) made from scratch, with a lemon buttercream icing and then decorated with fondant.
All of the decorations on the cake (other than the figurines which were purchased, and the furniture in the rabbit hole, that are toys) were hand-made with fondant ahead of time. Alice has just fallen down the rabbit hole and is about to enter her very own world of nonsence through the red curtains. The talking doorknob is hiding just behind the open curtains - you can just see his gold doorknob nose poking out. He was my favourite part of the cake to make. Remember that one good turn deserves another!
Tulgey Wood and moreGrowing up, my favourite Wonderland character was hands-down the Cheshire Cat. So, when styling an Alice in Wonderland party, I couldn't go past including some aspects from Tulgey Wood and it's cute inhabitants, especially the pink and purple feline.
The mome raths were extremely easy to create; using some simple wood glue to attach some colourful pipe cleaners to plush pom-pom balls and googly eyes.
I designed the timber-look signs, had them printed and cut them out manually before sticking to the wall.
The Cheshire Cat balloon face was pretty simple to put together, using balloons that we already had on hand. I hand-drew his grin onto plain white paper using a permanent marker, cut it out then stuck it onto the face. The eyes, nostrils and whiskers were also hand-drawn directly onto the balloons using a black permanent marker.
The ivy was purchased at a very low cost at our local Kmart, and the talking doorknob was created using yellow and orange coloured paper.
To create the queen of hearts' croquet set, I simply purchased a child's wooden set from Kmart and hand-painted it to suit the occasion. The mallets became the pink flamingos. The wickets became card soldiers and hedgehog faces were added to the balls. We'll talk more about the party games later (read on!)
Do you remember the pompous Wonderland caterpillar that sits on the mushroom, giving Alice two slices of it? He tells her that one side will make her grow shorter and the other side will make her grow taller.
I designed two printable mushroom slices in triangular shapes, similar to the ones that Alice eats in the movie. I am giving them to you!
These printables are cut and assembled into pie boxes with a base and a lid. This means that you can use them for fun decorations for your party, but also as cake/pie boxes or party favour boxes. The printable files are in PDF format and can be opened and printed in Adobe Reader. Read on to access your download files.
Pictured below is our Cheshire printable party invitation. This is one of my personal favourites! Click on the image to learn more about the invitation that you can personalise yourself in Adobe Reader DC.
On the food tables and surrounds, I combined printable decorations with synthetic flowers, toys, artwork and more to add colour, texture and visual interest to our party décor.
The Mad Hatter's hat was converted from a Willy Wonka hat (worn at this year's book week carnival!) for this occasion. The base was constructed with cardboard from old boxes and then covered in fabric. There are plenty of online tutorials on making your own hats with cardboard - a quick search query will yield multiple results for you to peruse.
The Alice in Wonderland Golden Afternoon Flowers were downloaded, printed out and assembled according to the recommended instructions, using green pipe cleaners. I think they looked great mixed in with the synthetic flowers.
Characters from the movie were printed and cut out and placed around the tables to add more visual interest and depth.
I purchased the large synthetic grass roll from a bargain store to use as a backdrop. As it was quite heavy, we attached it to the track frame of our window blinds to hang, using cable ties.
The cute teapot and teacup printables were added to the synthetic grass backdrop to brighten it up. Want to brighten up your party décor? You can download the files for free at the end of this post.
The rose red paint props were created using printable labels that I designed, and old paint cans that were gathering dust in our garage. I splashed some red paint on the outside of the cans for effect.
I am giving away the printable paint label in this post. You can download and print it to make your own paint cans in a similar way and paint the roses red with Alice! You can access the digital file for the paint can label by clicking on the link at the end of the post.
Used as the hero piece of party decor, the printed backdrop in A0 size was designed by yours truly and professionally printed. I accented it with a garland of synthetic roses and hand-cut paper flowers. I made the flowers from plain white computer paper and coloured craft paper in red and green. You can read the tutorial and download the template I used in different sizes, here.
Pictured below is our Wonderland printable party invitation. Click on the image to learn more about the invitation that you can personalise yourself in Adobe Reader DC.
A couple of lacy tablecloths (that we already owned) in white provided the pretty basis for the tea party tablescape. For the main centrepiece, I purchased a synthetic moss roll to serve as a table runner. I hand-glued an assortment of plastic flowers and cute little toadstools to add a pop of colour and add to the forest theme. This provided us with a nice place to set our serving essentials.
Each guest's place was set with a cute napkin (matching our party theme) and a nice white paper doily to dress it up. I purchased these at a local department store. However, if you need to purchase a large amount, they can be bought in bulk at a much cheaper rate.
The red and white "toadstool" drink coasters were made from folding and gluing paper party bags in half to form a square.
A piece of cardboard was hand-cut and painted for my daughter's chair. The others were simply covered with brightly-coloured sheets, with flowers added at the back. The paper lanterns were purchased from a department store and were a great investment, because unlike balloons, they can be used multiple times.
The water bottles were decorated with drink me labels, that I designed. A copy of the printable file is included at the end of this post, for your own use.
I enjoyed preparing the food for this party. As it was essentially a tea party, we had a light luncheon with tea sandwiches, served with tea and coffee. This was preceded by the birthday cake with a combination of sweet and savoury snacks.
I wanted to keep the party food in keeping with the Alice in Wonderland theme, without being too over the top. Simple food is usually the best, especially for hosting a tea party.
Fun food options began with the bread and butterflies. I made these using hotdog buns sliced and opened to form the wings. Julienned carrots formed the butterfly bodies and candy eyes were stuck on the front using a bit of butter. Scones with jam and cream were always going to be included; they're a tea party staple!
Cute little toadstools were made by topping white marshmallows with strawberries and the halves of red apples. No sticking agent was necessary. The fruit adhered easily from just the moisture on their own flesh. These were my favourite food item served.
I formed mome raths using carrot and celery sticks popped directly into dip.
The cookies were a plain sugar cookie recipe and decorated using pure icing sugar mixed with vanilla essence and water. It is not as stable as royal icing made with egg whites, but is perfect for decorating biscuits quickly and easily. To finish, some cookies were topped with sugar flowers.
I designed all of the food labels to match the backdrop design. These were simply printed on our home computer (at the last minute) and cut out. That's the best thing about party printables - they're a life-saver if you're running out of time and need decorations at the last minute!
Because we had a small gathering, organising a few quick and simple party games was very easy.
Firstly, we played Pin the Tail on the Cheshire Cat, using a printed game poster and matching tails. Unfortunately, I forgot to take any pics of it! Each guest was blindfolded with a cheshire cat eye mask, which was fun.
Our second game was a ping pong ball toss. I made paper teacups for this game, which were set out on the floor. Each player had a single throw on their turn, with the aim of getting the ball into a cup. If they succeeded, they proceeded to the next round. If they failed to land the ball in a cup, they were immediately eliminated. The game continued in this way until only one player was left and they were declared the winner!
I have included one of the teacup designs for you to download at the end of this post, so keep reading!
And lastly, we played a game of croquet with our painted set. I've gotta tell you, it's much more difficult than it looks, even with most of us cheating!
So, that's our Alice in Wonderland themed birthday (or unbirthday) party! Thanks so much for joining us. I hope that our ideas will help you to create your own exciting event! What will also help is some free party printables, right? Find the links to your free downloads below.
Download the printable mushroom box base and lid here
Access the digital file for the paint can label by clicking here.
Get your teapots and teacups files for free here.
Your teacup design is here.
Download the Drink Me labels here.
Back to Digi Dame's Party Blog