Wednesday, April 21, 2010


There's something about polka dots that makes me happy so I have to share some of the delightfully dotty parties I've found.  Get ready, because there are lots of 'em!

The simplicity of this celebration thrown by I am Baker is just striking.  It wasn't a children's party but all of the ideas would work perfectly for one.  I'm actually thinking of doing something similar for my girls' second birthday this fall.  The inspiration came from the sparkly paper used for the invitations.

She used that paper to wrap some skinny glass vases.

Utensils were wrapped in a napkin and tied with a coordinating ribbon.

And she made large sugar cookies frosted in matching colors on sticks to put in the vases.  Smaller versions of the cookies also decorated the white cake.

Doesn't this confection just put a smile on your face?

Cookies also brightened up the plates.

And the table.

What can I say?  I love every little piece of this party! 

Another sassy spotted celebration comes via Party Perfect but this time the color combination was pink and brown.  The table was lined in polka dot fabric.

I love these balloons within balloons!  You can find the same ones at Plates and Napkins.

Sweets were served in pink buckets with dotted ribbon.

Any yummy iced treats had spoons decked out with twos and spots.

And even the favors were wrapped to match. Adorable!

I stumbled upon a fabulous first birthday bash at Creative Hostess, and while the theme was pink and orange, polka dots stole the show!

A pink table cloth was topped with an orange and white dotted runner while a coordinating polka dotted birthday banner and balloon arch set the stage.  And dots galore were all over the birthday and smash cakes.

More treats were put out in polka dotted cupcake wrappers, and taffy was strung on sticks and displayed in glass vases.

Even the favors had spots!  There were bubbles (round like polka dots!) with dotted ribbon.

Also candy filled jars with polka dot fabric tops.

And polka dot trimmed bags were personalized for all of the party goers!

Now if that's not a dotty party, I don't know what is.

Here's one more super sweet second birthday that was featured on Kara's Party Ideas via Our Cozy Nest.  I love the dotted garlands they hung above the table.

And this terrific two!

Decorations were simple but just right - a spotted banner, tissue pom poms and more of the dotty garlands.

Even the food fit the theme and was shaped like polka dots!

And look!  These spotted cupcakes:

Were actually pink cakes with a surprise spot on the inside!

So so fun!

Despite what you may think, polka dot parties aren't just for girls.  You just have to look at the spot-tacular party Cupcakes and Par-Tees threw for Charlie's first to see how this theme can work for boys too.  The invitation from Peepeye Designs set the tone.

And the magnificent smash cake and cupcakes from J Dot Sweets sat on a homemade stand inspired by this tutorial at Polka Dot Birthday (more on that great site later).  It's simply three different cardboard boxes wrapped in paper to match the party color scheme and tied with coordinating ribbon.  So easy and adorable!

Round cake pops sat in bud vases filled with M&Ms.

The favors were polka dotted buckets filled with cookie pops and goodies, and they were lined up next to a photo collage of Charlie's first year.  How cute is that?

Gabrielle over at Design Mom also threw a polka dot party for her son, Oscar's, third birthday.  Well, technically it was called a "Round & Round" party but since everything was, well, round, it kind of fits the bill.

Decorations were made by punching circles out of construction paper and gluing them onto curly ribbon.

The menu was based on all of the round things three year olds like to eat - PB&J's cut into circles, cucumbers with carrots, pineapple rings, etc. - and the food was adorned with circle picks.

Cupcakes had round sprinkles.

And favors were super balls.  Super cool!

So now that you've seen some polka dot parties in action, let's take a look at some things you can do to throw a dotty bash of your own.

First, the invitation.  Stylish Celebrations has some adorable polka dot invites in their Bubbilicious line that will work for boys, girls or boy/girl multiples and can be customized for you to print at home.  I love the color combination in this one.

And this photo collage is so sweet for a first birthday.

Dimpleprints has some great printable options too.

If you want to make your own, why not do a twist on this Bouncy invitation from Martha Stewart?  Instead of a ball for the cover, use some polka dotted scrapbook paper. {get the tutorial here}

Now on to the decorations.  A simple banner like this one from Milla Love would be perfect for a party like the one I am Baker threw.

They also sell these festive pom pom garlands which look like polka dots come to life.

Or you can make your own garland using the method Design Mom did or try your hand at these great circular streamers. {the how to can be found here}


Tissue pom poms, like these from Prost to the Host, are an easy way to incorporate something poufy and round.

And as you may have seen in my More Garden Party Goodness post the other day, I love them mixed with lanterns too. {available at Polka Dot Market}

You can deck your table out using strands of candy necklaces.

And decorating vases with ribbon like this is an easy and inexpensive way to dress up any surface. {from Country Living via Polka Dot Birthday}

Stylish Celebrations also sells decorations that coordinate with their Bubbilicious invitations.  There's a great welcome sign:

And a high chair banner and matching birthday hat (how cute is the ric rac trim?).

Polka Dot Birthday has the tutorial for this terrific ribbon topiary which you can use as a centerpiece on your table.

They've also got a great how-to for making these cute polka dot cookies that can do double duty as decorations and favors!

For more great ideas on how to throw a polka dot party, make sure to visit Polka Dot Birthday and their sister site Polka Dot Market, which sells all things dotty. 

On to the food.  I love the way several of the parties I featured above incorporated round food into their menus.  Another fun idea is to make spotted milkshakes.  Martha Stewart suggests you create them by painting the inside of glasses with jam, letting it dry and then filling with a smoothie.

While Sweet Paul {found via Polka Dot Birthday} has a recipe for making strawberry shakes with marshmallow dots like this.  Love!

That brings us to the cake.  There are so many easy ways to transform a regular cake into polka dot perfection (like adding cookies a la I am Baker).  The Polamus Family has a great step-by-step tutorial on how to make and roll your own fondant dots to create something like this.

Or this.

Or this.

You can also opt for cupcakes.  Martha has the how to for these spotted ones.

And these with fun personalized dots.

You can also decorate plain cupcakes with polka dotted toppers.  Stylish Celebrations has some to go with the rest of their Bubbilicious goodies.

And this set of printables from Tweedle Dee Designs comes in pinks and purples for girls or this colorway for boys.

If you want to make your own, try using one of these free printable polka dot paper patterns from Creature Comforts.

Now, let's talk favors.  Living Locurto has a free download for a great candy or cookie label.

Or you can transform bubble envelopes into bags by adding ribbon and filling them with all things round like button candy, water colors, etc.

And bags filled with jelly beans and dressed up with polka dot paper and ribbon make another pretty parting gift. {get the how to here}

Last but not least - need a fun activity to play at your polka dot party? 

B-I-N-G-O is the name of the game!  Download a template for the boards here.

Wow!  That's a whole lotta dots!  And we've lots of great giveaways and discounts from vendors you saw in this post, including Prost to the Host, Stylish Celebrations, Milla Love, Tweedle Dee Designs, and more, so be sure to visit the goodies section of AFOMFT for all of the details.

Images: I am Baker, Party Perfect, Creative Hostess, Cupcakes and Par-Tees, Design Mom, Stylish Celebrations, Dimpleprints, Martha Stewart, Milla Love, Prost to the Host, Country Living, Polka Dot Birthday, Sweet Paul, The Polhamus Family, Tweedle Dee Designs, Creature Comforts & Living Locurto
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  1. Thanks for sharing! i love, love, love polka dots!! Or how about using Fruit Loops for garland or adding french macarons!

  2. Wonderful things!
    I am a new follower from MBC.


  3. Thanks for highlighting Polka Dot Birthday so much - boy, you found some great links! May I share your post on :)


Thanks for the love!