5 Tips for Throwing Amazing DIY Birthday Parties
Real mom Gina Bell shares how to create a great birthday party without busting your budget
Melissa Roja Lawlor, Contributor
Articles> Kids' Parties> 5 Tips for Throwing Amazing DIY Birthday Parties
birthday parties
When it comes to do-it-yourself birthday parties, Gina Bell takes hers to another level. Her blog, East Coast Mommy, chronicles her busy life as mommy to three young boys she had within 3 ½ years, and is a bastion of crafts, kids activities, and easy "real mom" tutorials. By Bell's standards, for a birthday party to be truly DIY, two things need to happen: the party needs to be budget-friendly and doable by a real mom. We loved her creative DIY party ideas, so we asked her to share some advice for readers looking to throw a great party while saving a buck or two.

Here are Bell's 5 Tips for a Great DIY Birthday Party:

1. Pick a Theme

"Decorations can revolve around a character, an activity or a color. Just make sure there is something to bring everything together." Whether it's an animal theme, a character theme, or a music theme, Gina has some great ideas for "real mom" DIY parties!

2. Add a Personal Touch

"Bake a special cake, craft your own decorations, or cook your signature dish to serve to your guests. Your little ones may not remember the details, but they will remember the effort you made to make their day special." Bell's sons wanted a Super Hero party, so she set up a crafts table where guests were given a Super Hero Mask and Cape with their initial. Using colored felt, embroidery thread, a button and self-sticking Velcro, Bell was able to fashion a special treat her guests would always remember. Visit her blog for the full tutorial.

3. Have a Rough Schedule
While Bell acknowledges the importance of a timeline, she adds, "You can't plan every second, but it will be helpful to have an idea of how the party will unfold." We all know that once kids get going, they're really the ones in control of what happens next. So make your plan, but be ready to be flexible come party time.

4. Plan Activities for All
Bell believes in finding something for everyone. "Rent a karaoke machine, play board games, decorate cupcakes, or do a craft. Do something that keeps your guests entertained and together in one room." Her 6-year-old's circus birthday party featured a full circus midway stocked with games and prizes. You can make your own circus games out of everyday household items -- Gina used TV trays covered with striped wrapping paper to create that circus atmosphere!

5. Make Your Event Memorable
"Take lots of pictures, and send copies to everyone who attended," Bell suggests. "Your loved ones and guests will appreciate the opportunity to re-live the memories!" Bell's blog is one place she shares memories over the years.

Gina Bell is the author of the blog East Coast Mommy. She enjoys providing ideas, activities, and DIY tutorials to support and inspire real moms everywhere. You can find Gina on Facebook and Pinterest.

Photos used with permission from Gina Bell.

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