Elmo Birthday Party Theme for a Budget – With TONS of Free Downloads!
Note: I have added NEW PDF versions of some of the files where you can edit the text (for example the invitation. Coming soon: editable favor bag labels, cupcake toppers and more)!
Also, please add pictures of your elmo party to my photo group on flickr: http://www.flickr.com/groups/1854236@N22/
WELCOME to my elmo party idea page!
And if you are looking for a Little Einstein’s Party Page with lots of free downloads, click here!
For R’s second birthday party, I did an Elmo themed party, since she, like most kids, is on love with the little red monster.
I spent a TON of time researching and going to many different stores to find all the perfect yet inexpensive products for the party, as well as making many customizable products to give the party that extra special touch!
In this blog post you will find all sorts of ideas for decorations, cakes, cupcakes, personalized party favors and more with TONS of free downloads to make your own party! If you have other ideas for Elmo parties, please share them or post pictures on my flickr group and let us know in the comments!
I bought most of my decorations from the dollar store, where you can find TONS of cute stuff – from banners, to cupcake stands, to all kinds of other things you can hang on the walls. Add some elmo balloons and you are set!
I bought a zillion of these Elmo balloons from the DOLLAR store! Yes, the dollar store! They were awesome, and they actually lasted for weeks! Since they were only a dollar, i literally bought about 20 and put them up all over the house.
I bought this elmo basket from Target – can’t remember how much it was, but it wasn’t bad – I think around $10.
Perfect for holding cute elmo candies!
…and for halloween too!
These are the labels I made to wrap around little candy bars. I specifically sized these to Hershey Miniature candy bars.
Click on each image, then right click and save the larger image that comes up. Or click here to download a PDF of these ready to print onto letter size label paper. Then cut them out and wrap around your bars!
What party would be complete without your themed paper products! I personally went to about 4-5 different stores to get the best but least expensive paper products, and ultimately came up with these:
Cups: The dollar store
Plates and Napkins: Party City (I just didn’t like the ones at the dollar store as much)
Streamers and hats: Party City
Note: To save on the number of these I had to buy, I also bought plain red and yellow plates, napkins and all my utensils from dollar store. It ends up being significantly cheaper than buying them from Party City or Target!
Sesame Street Juice Boxes
I found these really cute juice boxes for the party which work great! You can buy small packs at wholefoods, but I found a big multi pack at BJs! There were (and still are) a hit!
Cake and Cupcakes!
I hadn’t intended on going so overboard with this whole party…but once I got started, I couldn’t help myself!
So, for the cake, I took inspiration from a good friend of mine who is AWESOME at making and decorating cakes, and thought I would try my hand at it. This is the first time I’ve made a cake other than a simple round or square cake, and definitely the first time I’ve ever decorated. So hopefully that will give you confidence – it really wasn’t that bad! I bought my baking supplies mainly from Michaels – with a couple of things that I found in larger bulk from Walmart.
For the CAKE:
1) Buy the mix (I used German chocolate cake by betty crocker) or make it form scratch
2) Buy a cake pan – I bought the cake pan from Michaels as well. You will need shortening to coat the pan as well
3) You need supplies for icing. There are tons available for this. I bought most of it from Michaels again – i bought the bags, and the tips – I think I just bought 1 tip – the star, and used that for everything. I also bought a spatula to spread the icing.
4) You need icing and color. I bought large bottles of cream cheese icing form walmart as well as the red icing color from there. I would buy 2 bottles of icing color, because you need to add a lot to get the red color – otherwise it will just look pink. I also bought ready to use orange icing for the nose, and black icing decoration for the eyes.
5) Melt-able chocolate candy (also in the cake section) for the mouth.
Once you have everything, you make the cake mix, prepare the cake pan as instructed, and bake your cake. I turned it over onto a cutting board with aluminum foil. There were pieces that broke, like the nose, but I just placed it back on, and it was fine once I put the icing on. Then you start decorating!
I first tried to use a spatula to cover the cake with icing, thinking it would be faster, but it was a disaster. Little cake crumbs got all mixed in with the icing and I had to start over. SO I switched to using the icing bag and star tip, and made the little dollops to cover the whole cake, and it worked like a charm! The only different thing I did was make concentric circles instead of dollops for the nose – just to make it look a little bit different.
For the mouth, you just melt the chocolate in the microwave as directed, and then I poured it into the mouth opening. Then when you do the red icing for the face, you overlap the edges of the mouth to cover it up (I wish I had pictures to show you! But I wasn’t blogging back then, so wasn’t thinking of taking pix!).
As far as order, I would do eyes, then mouth, then red face, then orange nose.
For the CUPCAKES:
I used red velvet mix to give the non-chocolate eaters an options. I made cupcakes just like you usually do, then ultimately used the spatula to top them with icing. Below you can see all the different renditions I came up with. I made some with spirals using the star tip with the icing topper, and some with the spatula – i found the spatula to be faster. I experimented with different products for the eyes and nose, and ultimately settled on marshmallows for the eyes, and a third of a candied orange slice for the nose. Then I used black, glittery icing decoration for the pupils and the mouth. They were a hit!
I made some totally peanut/nut free options for some friends, and used regular brownie mix (my favorite is Duncan Hines Family Style made with pasteurized egg whites, and cooked at a slightly lower temperature than recommended and for significantly less time). I used a baking pan that had 1 inch squares and poured the batter in there. Then I used a spatula to spread white icing on the tops and then used ready made elmo cupcake toppers to decorate them!
You can find lots of different cupcake liners and toppers at Michaels and AC Moore.
Many people have been looking for elmo cupcake toppers, so I figured I’d make some for you!
They are 1 inch circles, red with elmo’s face. Print them on an 8.5 x 11 page or LABEL paper (you can buy this at any office supply store, or buy in bulk from planetlabel.com), and then use a 1 inch circle or scalloped circle punch to punch out your toppers. Then stick a toothpick to the back of one sticker, and put another sticker behind it. And viola! You have your very own DIY Elmo cupcake topper! Yay!
Invitations & Return Address Labels
I spent quite a bit of time making these invitations – hopefully you can benefit from it as wel!
You can download the invitation and fill in your child’s name and age – either using photoshop or word, and then print them on a letter size paper – 4 to a page. There is blank space also to add the date, time, location and RSVP info to the invitation.
The font I used is “teenage angst”
Here is a version of the invitation without the lines (click on the image first, THEN right-click and save):
NEW (added 4/17/2013):
Here is a PDF of the invitation that has editable fields in it, so you can customize your elmo invitation to your party!
NEW (added 4/17/2013):
And a completely blank invitation (right click to save the image and then add whatever text you would like):
And the same blank invitation with 4 on a page:
A tip for all the printing mentioned here:
You can print all of these items either on your own printer at home, or you could get them printed at a local office store such as FedEx Office or Staples. The bulk of the cost usually comes from the cutting, so you could invest $25 in a paper cutter and cut everything yourself (that’s what I did!).
Personalized Elmo Return Address Labels or other All Purpose Sticker
Elmo Party Activity #1: Build Your Own Elmo!
Sadly I can’t remember where I got this idea from, but I made a “Build Your Own Elmo” activity for the party.
I basically made pieces of elmo out of construction paper, and put them, along with 2 googly eyes, a nose and fasteners into a party bag for each kid. Then at the party I laid out a sheet, gave each kid a bag, and put out tons of foam stickers and let everyone go to town!
Most fasteners I found were the regular old silver or gold circles. But for a little more money, you can find all sorts of cute flowers and colored circles etc in the scrap booking section of AC Moore or Michaels! Just remember that the fasteners are a choking hazard for younger kids. So depending on how old your kids are at the party, you may want to put the fasteners in their own plastic bag (that’s what i did) and make sure that a parent is with each child when they make these. And most importantly, make sure the parents are aware of the choking hazard so they can keep a close eye on the kids!
I found the googly eyes in multi-size packs at the dollar store. I just had to buy 3 packs so I would have enough of the large ones for each child. For the noses, I used a 1.5 inch scalloped circle paper punch with orange cardstock to cut out noses.
Then I added a small sticky foam square to the back of each that the guests could simple remove the backing from and stick onto elmo!
Here are a couple of beautiful Elmos that were created at the party!
You can download the printable build your elmo pattern that you see below.
Elmo Party Activity #2: Pin the nose on Elmo!
On a big red poster board, I drew this elmo (i know, not perfect, but it works!) and then added the eyes using regular paper and construction paper.
Lastly, I made the noses. I used orange foam because that’s what I had, but I would just use orange card stock if I were doing it again. I used a 3 inch scalloped circle paper punch to cut out the noses, and then attached a medium sized square double sided sticky foam to the back of each one. Then the kids were able to just take one, peel off the backing and pin the nose on Elmo! Depending on how old your kids are, you may or may not want to spin them around first with a blindfold on. =)
Elmo & Big Bird Party Favor Bags & Labels
I bought regular red and yellow gift bags from the dollar store, and then put these big bird and elmo face stickers on them for a special touch.
As far as what to put in them, here’s what I did:
1) A personalized elmo coloring book (see below)
2) Small box of crayons – you can buy packs of 40 from Party City – also available at Walmart
3) Elmo stickers – The Dollar Store
3) Cute animal snack cups with gummy fruit inside – both from The Dollar Store or Deals (another type of dollar store)
Personalized Elmo Coloring Book for your party gift bags!
Below you will find the front and back covers that I made for the coloring books, which you can personalize. As well as a PDF of all the coloring book pages that I collected to include inside!
Here is the coloring book outer cover with the front and back put together. You just need to personalize the names!
Coloring book pages:
The following labels can be printed and put on red or yellow gift bags, respectively, to make cute Elmo and big bird party favor bags like I show above!
Here are several images of elmo that you can use to spruce up your party decorations. Click on each image to get the larger version of it, then right click and download it.
Well that’s it!
I hope you find stuff here you can use and please spread the word! I spent SO much time putting all this together for my little one – hopefuly others don’t have to spend so much time!
And please leave other ideas if you have them!