Aubrey turned 9 in September and she requested a Harry Potter Themed Birthday Party. We gifted her “Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone” on her last birthday and she immediately fell in love with the characters. I started putting together the party a bit last-minute due to our recent country relocation. During my party theme research, I came across the StarDust Kids company that will send character entertainers to your party and Hermione was an option. The date available happened to be her actual birthday so we confirmed!
The next part (planning) was the most fun for me! I loved putting together the party and creating the decorations; however, I am not crafty myself. I relied heavily on Pinterest and Blogs to get the ideas for the party. My goal was to transform our downstairs into the perfect Harry Potter themed room!
The first thing I saw when researching Harry Potter parties was a brick wall entrance to create the Platform 9 3/4. Running through a brick wall is not possible so we took an old sheet, a rectangle sponge and burnt red color paint to create the appearance of a brick wall. We hung the sheet inside the door and cut a slit directly in the middle. The result turned out great and a fun way to enter the party!
Next we created a spider trail (using plastic spider rings) along the hallway guiding the guests to the party room.
The party food table was a lot of fun! I really wanted to get some dry ice to create the illusion a self stirring cauldron but decided that might be bit over the top for a 9 year old’s party.
Several blogs gave me some fun ideas for decorations the girls could admire and play with during the party. I saw a tutorial on YouTube to make a Sorting Hat out of a witch hat and paper mache. I purchased a Halloween witch hat from the Dollar Store and cut up newspapers. I glued pieces on until I had covered the entire hat. Then I rolled up additional paper to create the appearance of eyes and a mouth and glued them to the hat. I let everything dry for a day before painting the entire hat a dark brown color. The next day I added in hints of black to create the shadows around the eyes and mouth.
As an added effect, I purchased a miniature sorting hat that talked at the push of a button. Aubrey played tricks on her friends by placing the sorting hat I created on their heads and then pushing the button on the miniature hat. Each child was placed into one of the Hogwarts Houses by the miniature sorting hat.
Next up: potion bottles. This craft even Andrew enjoyed (mainly because we had to drink what was inside the bottles first). To create the appearance of potion bottles, first remove the labels from wine, beer and other glass bottles from around the house. I also found a couple of colorful bottles at the dollar store to create potion bottles of all different shapes and sizes.
The labels were a free printable found online that Aubrey helped me cut out and stick to the bottles. Then we took a yarn and wrapped around the bottles in different directions to make them look older. Aubrey filled each bottle partially with water and added food dye for a colorful appearance.
The snack food table even tied into the theme. The tables included: Troll Boggies (green grapes), Twizzler wands, Hufflepuffs (cheese balls), Popcorn with chocolate frogs, Ravenclaw Fruit Garden, Veggie plate shaped as owl, chocolate coins, cheese brooms (made from string cheese), gummy snakes and frogs and Every Flavor Jelly Beans.
We did feed the kids hot dogs too! These were not exactly part of the theme though.
Aubrey had created floating lights made of paper towel and toilet paper rolls. She used a hot glue gun to resemble melting wax and then painted them. We stuffed them and put a Led tea lights on top. I strung them up to the ceiling with fishing line and painters tape.
All the signs and banners located around the house were found on Pinterest. Simply Google Harry Potter themed parties and you will find plenty of freebies.
I glued the free Azkaban Prison printable to a large poster board and then taped styrofoam to the back so the kids could hold up the poster board easily. Then I cut a square out in the middle so the kids could stick their heads through for fun party photos.
You cannot have a birthday party without a cake. Now I did not create this cake as I am not that talented. I ordered it and the baker actually had the edible image sent over from London. Aubrey was thrilled with the outcome!
One last treat we wanted to attempt was Harry Potter’s famous Butter Beer. I found multiple recipes online but had difficultly finding all the recipe ingredients in Australia so we made our own version. Honestly, I am not exactly sure how much of everything Andrew put in the mix but I know he used vanilla ice cream, cream soda, whipped cream, and caramel topping. The outcome was a hit with the kids (a bit too sweet for my liking though)!
The entertainer was at the party for an hour and she led the kids through a Harry Potter quiz, games, dancing, and a bit of magic. Looking back I think we could have provided our own entertainment for the kids. She did a nice job keeping the kids engaged but I am not sure it was worth the price tag.
A few activity ideas we thought of after the fact: wand decorating, spell writing and potion making. Andrew really loved the idea of the girls writing their own spells and then pretending to use them on each other. Oh well, maybe Ella will want a Harry Potter party in the future (we still have all the decorations).
(I did not post any pictures of the kids participating in the games due to Aubrey’s friends being in all the photos too. The girls seemed to all enjoy the Hermione entertainer though!)
Finally, we had our take-home table for all the girls. I did not want to do a simple goodie bag so we created several really fun items for all the party-goers.
The quidditch broom bags were made of 2 paper lunch sacks, chop sticks and yarn. I put a pair of Harry Potter socks, a lollipop, spider ring and chocolate coins inside each broom bag.
The table also included:
- Homemade wands Aubrey created out of chop sticks. She used hot glue, paint, glitter, ribbons and more to create each individual look.
- Chocolate frogs in baggie with free online printable label
- Chocolate snitches (created with Ferrero Chocolate Balls and free online printable)
- Jelly Beans inside potion bottles
- Colorful Lollipops
The party was a complete success and I think everyone had an amazing time! I spent the rest of the day lounging on the couch after two weeks of preparations. Aubrey thanked us both multiple times for the “best party she ever had” (of course she says that every year)! I am so thankful to all the creative people that posted so many amazing party ideas online. It made this momma’s job a whole lot easier!