I asked Elias what type of birthday party he wanted. Like a shot he came back with ‘Pirates’. ”Oh No! Really?”, I replied. Not that I have any particular objection to Pirates but we must have been to ten pirates parties in the last year — there was absolutely no scope for originality! So I spent the next few weeks flashing alternative ideas at him and the one that finally got him was ‘Cops ‘n’ Robbers’.
- I’m no big-shot with Adobe so designed a simple invite based on the Metropolitan Police logo. I got the invites printed by Moo Print, which is a hot little discovery as they use ‘Printfinity’, a technology that allows you to print a different image on every post-card, business card or sticker you print with them — I didn’t use this on the invites but couldn’t resist printing some Police logo stickers in different colours to slip in with the invites (well, all kids love stickers in my experience!).
- I then ordered some Police tape to wrap in front of the house (it got our neighbours talking at least!), a police costume for my son and cake icing printed with the ‘new’ police logo from here.
- My daughter already had a cute Katvig B&W striped top and black leggings so all she needed was some dodgy stubble and I had my first robber. (Other cute B&W striped ideas I like were from Bob & Blossom, P.O.P online & gorgeous Ivana Helsinki).
- We served food in our cellar (which we tried to make feel like a jail canteen). My husband and mum cooked fish and chips (for 20 kids!) and I bought these brown food boxes for ease of serving (the kids found these pretty special too) and just printed some stickers labelled ‘Cell Food’ to seal them.
- I stole another great idea from Brooke Reynolds for the place-mats — using her idea for Valentine’s Day, I adapted it to make ‘Wanted’ posters with the outline of a face and laid the table with a pencil for each kid to ‘design a robber’ (there were some fantastic results from this!).
- I made simple draw-string ‘Swag’ bags as party-bags but also love these black and white striped paper bags for something a bit less maintenance.
- We played ‘Cuff The Robber’ — which was basically ‘Pin the Tail on the Donkey’ and ‘Rob the Piggy Bank’ — which was a version of the magnetic fishing game. I used these Mighty Magnets and attached them with string to bamboo sticks. Then we emptied all our old coin boxes into 3 large clear boxes (with Piggy Banks on them) — the children then had to use the magnets to rob as much money as they could from the piggy banks in 20 seconds.
- For prizes we gave away Playmobil cops ‘n’ robbers and cool Lego policeman torch keyrings.
I have to say it was a really fun theme!