When we started to think about the next child’s birthday party we had to host, we tentatively asked our little one what they wanted to be:
“I want to be a unicorn!”
It was an unsurprising answer, but one that filled me with dread. I completely understand why you’d want to be a unicorn – they sneeze glitter snot and fart rainbows, after all – but trying to make a small child look like a convincing horse with a horn seemed like a task that was out of my reach, and budget. Plus, we were pretty certain the house would need to like a magical palace. A term not even my estate agent would agree to.
If you’re finding yourself on the same rainbow-filled quest, we’ve dreamed up five amazing ways you can organise a magical party on a budget, from costumes to food and games.
1) Easy dress-up: be a unicorn! A costume for any little one loves sparkles and rainbows.
What you’ll need: scissors, tape, glue, a peg, ribbon, lots of coloured wool, coloured card and silver foil.
What to do:
1. Roll card into a cone shape and stick.
2. Wrap silver foil around it. Get your kid to stick on coloured wool in a spiral around it the horn.
3. Glue on a long piece of ribbon and tie under your child’s chin.
1. Ask your child to roll foil into a long tail shape.
2. Twist colourful wool around it and tape into place.
3. Attach it to the back of your kid’s top.
1. Put together long pieces of coloured wool.
2. Ask your child to wrap foil around one end and stick in place.
3. Tie it around your little one’s waist.
1. Cut four hoof shapes from orange card. Get your kid to stick foil to one end.
2. Use wool to tie them around your little one’s wrists and ankles.
Photo credit: Laura Ashman.
2) Great game: Put a ring on it. Play this magical throw a hoop game!
What you’ll need: Card, paper plate, ribbon, glue, scissors, glittery paint and glow stick bracelets. As an alternative, you could shape foil into hoops instead.
What to do:
1. Roll the card into a cone shape and glue to fasten. Snip off any excess card at the bottom to make it level. Ask your kid to paint it with the glittery paint.
2. Once dry, stick the cone to a paper plate and wrap ribbon around it.
3. Write the points on each plate, like 1, 5 and 10.
4. Use the glowstick bracelets as the hoops, or shape foil into hoops instead.
5. Ask the children to throw three hoops each and keep a tally of the points.
3) Last minute DIY invite: Make the rainbow. Let’s get drawing with all the colours of the rainbow.
What you’ll need: Paper, felt tips and unicorn stickers
What to do:
1. Give each child a piece of paper, felt tips and stickers. Ask them to draw a rainbow and stick on lots of unicorns!
2. Can they sing I can sing a rainbow as they draw to remind themselves which order the colours are in?
3. Write all the party info on the back.
4) Fun party bag filler: Mythical gliders. Fun, last minute party favours.
These unicorn gliders are a fun addition to the gift bags. The kids can have fun flying them around, or you could have a competition to see who can fly their unicorn the furthest!
5) Party snack: No-bake unicorn cookies. Gluten-free treats that taste out of this world.
What you’ll need: Nut butter of your kids’ choice, we used cashew (or seed butter for those with allergies), coconut flour, sprinkles
What to do:
This recipe makes 6 cookies. Make more depending on how many kids are coming to the party.
1. Ask your child to add 3 tablespoons of coconut flour and 6 tablespoons of nut butter to a bowl.
2. Add lots of unicorn sprinkles and mix it up!
3. Get your kid to roll the dough into balls. Use a fork to press them down.
4. Decorate with more sprinkles. YUM!
It’s just a shame that, despite all the magical powers a unicorn may possess, their hooved feet still make them unable to clean up after themselves.