Planning a DIY Princess Party (Not in a Package)

A DIY Rapunzel Birthday Party

Our little girl is turning four next week, and we're in full party planning mode. This year's planning is especially interesting since we're living in a house with no kitchen, and in various but consistent states of complete chaos. Nevertheless, it's our four-year-old's birthday, and there will be a rockin' little kids' birthday... in, um, an octogenarian par-tay room.

We're inches away from starting the next phase on the Curbly House: an addition with a new a kitchen. But for now, we're nestled in with a pile of blueprints and a mini prep-projects. Needless to say, our house is neither "kid" nor "party" friendly.

So, we're having the party at a family member's condominium. The median age in the building is 80, but they have a party room...which was last updated sometime in the 80s. It's going to be interesting.

Ayla is currently immersed in a world of magic, full of princesses and fairies. She has only seen three Disney princess movies, but she rattles off the stats of each princess in her collection like a baseball fanatic throws around batting averages. 

We're all about giving her a birthday party centered on her interests, but we are not all about a pre-packaged princess party bundle. After some negotiation (she may be four, but she's got all the makings of a lawyer), we decided to go with Rapunzel.

Thank God for Pinterest. Nearly everything we're creating for the party was found or inspired by something we found on there. Here's a glimpse at what we're planning:


  • Sun Bunting: This sun bunting is inspired by the sun emblem in the movie. We're making our own using our Silhouette Cameo cutting machine. This machine is the shining star of our party decor, and there's no way we would have embarked on so much DIYing without it. You can order your own personalized bunting for a very reasonable price here. They also have this printable bunting for free!
    SuperMomMoments Rapunzel Bunting
  • Braids: I found skeins of yellow yarn on sale and bought every one. We are braiding them to hang from the recessed ceiling. We're also creating a big A.
  • HoneyBeeVintage Rapunzel Braid
    Centerpieces: Each table will have a candle holder with a sun emblem. To create this we used vellum and paint markers. When we go married we bought several dozen vases in bulk to line the aisle during our ceremony. These vases were the best purchase ever. They have been used at least a dozen times in the last five years. 
  • Backdrop: Floating lanterns are all the rage in the Rapunzel movie, Tangled. Ayla is currently painting her own set of "glowy lanterns" on a huge piece of blue canvas we picked up at the fabric store.


  • Boats: We're creating these jello boats using blue jello and orange slices. We're making our mini flags using the Silhouette.
    CafeMom Jello Boat
  • Pub Food: The main food scene from the movie takes place in a pub. So, we're running with that theme and doing a build-your-own-sandwich station. We'll also have root beer on tap.
  • Sun Bread: Since the sunshine is a recurring symbol in our Rapunzel theme, Ayla's amazing nana is making sun-shaped bread for the party.

Games & Entertainment: 

  • Pin the Frying Pan on Flynn Rider: This game is a take on pin-the-tale-on-the donkey. We drew a poster of Flynn's face and printed out these frying pans.
  • Limbo: We're placing a braid on an old broomstick for our dance party and limbo.
  • Photo Booth: We're using Bruno's photobooth for our DIY photo booth. We ordered this backdrop for some sparkle, and are making some accessories attached to sticks for the guests to use in the photos.
  • Face Painter: We hired a local face painter to come and work her face painting magic during the party.

For more Rapunzel party love, visit my Pinterest board. Check back next week for photos and a look at how it all turned out!


Thank you to Silhouette America for providing one Silhouette Cameo for review. I was not compensated for editorial coverage, and all opinions are mine alone. 

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alicia on Jan 16, 2013:

Thanks, Emma! Jackson's party sounds perfect. Oh, if only Ayla could have a non-winter birthday! A big hug to you and your guys.

Emma Bouressa on Jan 15, 2013:

Nice work Alicia! What a rad party this will be - perfect blend of princess and awesomeness! Last September we didn't really go with a themed party for Jackson, just the park, cupcakes, snacks and tie-dye shirts. It was a lot of fun with 4 yr olds and wasn't too messy. Some prep was taken but it was fun, and I got help from Langhan Dee at Wet Paint! Anyway, great job mama! Happy Birthday Ayla!

alicia on Jan 15, 2013:

Thanks, KeLLy aNN! We're pretty exited for the party. I love your son's party theme; Tin Tin/Indiana Jones are a great combination. I hope it's a blast!

KeLLy aNN on Jan 15, 2013:

I absolutely LOVE when parental units take the time to make a homemade party.

We do art projects,  plants {such as paperwhite bulbs in a cup} as party favors,  we switch things up like having Ice Cream Sundaes with a side of Neopolitan cake.  For our 11  year old, it looks like a Tin Tin/ Indiana Jones type birthday this year including a zip line that he's been asking for.  I love the jello boats and have included it in his party list.

I remember the home parties from my childhood more than anything else.

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