Monday, June 27, 2011

Cat Party Table Decorations


I tried not to spend an arm and a leg decorating for this party, because I really tend to go overboard on birthdays. I bought a pack of cat-toy mice at the dollar store, a pack of six styrofoam balls and a few skeins of yarn at Wal-Mart. The cat stuffed animals, and shrinky dinks I already had. (More about what I used it all for in a minute.) Oh yes, and I did buy the fabric to make the napkins.

About three weeks before the party I started stashing all the stuffed animal cats I found around the house in my sewing room. Surprisingly, the kids never seemed to miss them. I guess that means they have too many toys!


The photo isn't the greatest, but I used the shrinky-dinks to create place markers for each guest. When each person sat at the table he or she was greeted by a cute little kitty wearing a collar with his or her name. I just stitched the tags to a piece of ribbon and tied it around the cat's neck. My daughter really loves cats right now, so I had a ton of stuffed animals to choose from. If you don't have any little kitties lying around, you could probably find a few of them at your local thrift store. Our guests were all adults, but the stuffed kitties could make a cute party favor for kids to take home.

I made the collar place cards using shrinky dinks. They shrink down to one third their original size, so I made three-inch circles in Word. (That way I would end up with once inch name tags for each stuffed animal.) Within each circle I stuck in some cute cat clip art and the name of the guest, and then I printed right onto the plastic sheets using my ink-jet printer.

On my first sheet I discovered that black and gray ink ran - badly, but dark blue didn't. Why, I have no idea. And the dark blue really looked black after they shrank down. I also needed to adjust the fill of the clip art about 40%. As the plastic shrinks the colors concentrated and got significantly darker. Finally, I punched a hole for attaching the tag to the collar before they were placed in the oven. The plastic gets much thicker as it bakes, so punching holes afterward wasn't an option. If I hadn't already had the shrinky dinks, I would have just printed them out onto card stock - they would have been every bit as cute.


As for the table, I created a centerpiece using balls of yarn. (Which, of course, coordinated with the napkins.) I created the "balls" by winding yarn around styrofoam balls - just thick enough to cover up the styrofoam. It was a lot less expensive that buying all that yarn. Then I used the leftovers to string all over the table. I wanted it to look like all those little cats had been playing with it all afternoon. I added a few bowls of gold fish crackers (the perfect snack for hungry kitties,) a few candles and the toy mice and the table was done.

Cheap, easy, not too time consuming - and it looked great. This morning she told me, "Next year, I want a hummingbird party." I'm sure she'll change her mind 18 times between now and then, but it's fun to imagine what I might do...

6 comments:

Mum-me said...

What a great idea! The table looks great. I love the place markers .... and since my youngest is asking for a kitty party next year I may just pinch this idea, especially the bit about giving the little stuffed toy cats as party favours - much nicer than just a bag of lollies.

peaceliving said...

Liz, Great birthday decor, as always! I LOVE the yarn all over the table! So cute.

zhang1 said...
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Deanna said...

Everything looked so cute, and great color coordination! :)

Suzanne said...

What a great party..crazy cake and fabulous decorations. Wonderful birthday memories for your child to remember!

underatopazsky said...

Your cat themed party is fabulous! My 6 year old is already in love with the cats on the table and the older one is gothy enough to think the idea of the cat litter cake is truly gross (in all the right ways!). Thank you so much for dropping by my blog and leaving such a lovely comment. :o)