This party is very special and dear to me since it is the 3rd birthday party of my eldest son, Aidan. Aidan has been going through a mix of phases from Dinosaurs to Toy Story to Monsters and now Transformers! However he has always had a very special love for Thomas the Tank Engine as many little boys do (as you can probably see by his toy room here)
Aidan's "Thomas Collection"
I dont particularly like going down the "commercial" party route and wanted to stay away from "Thomas" (although you will see I did hire a Thomas jumping castle!). Instead I decided to create a vintage train party in the colour scheme of sky blue & red, with the party to be held at "Aidansville" station to celebrate the 3rd birthday of "The Aidan Express"!
I found an adorable train collection stationary set on Etsy by Parties By Hardie
. The printables were so affordable and upon purchase I was emailed a set that I was able to edit and customise with whatever text I wanted and then print my own stationary. Loved it! Here is a copy of the invitation that I went with:
Train collection printables from Parties By Hardie
I spent many late nights painting and building props including – a custom train station backdrop that I drew and hand painted myself. The station was of course called“Aidansville”, the clock was pointing to “3 o’clock” (being Aidan’s age) and I had 2 windows representing “Tickets” and “Luggage”. I got my
little man dressed up as a train driver and took photos of him before the party to stick in the windows (you might notice one is of him holding tickets for the
ticket booth window and the second photo of him holding mini suitcases for the luggage window).
The backdrop I drew & painted on canvas
The "ticket master"
Collecting the passengers luggage
Pretty much over mummy forcing him to pose & take silly photos now!! haha!!
I created a super long (4.5 metre) dessert table and covered it with hessian to give it a rustic feel. I built & painted a wooden train track to line the front of the table and bought plastic tubs that I painted red & blue and put wheels on to create “train carriages” to hold the food platters. Aidan already had a cute vintage
red ride-on wooden train that headed the table and “pulled” the carriages along the tracks!
The menu consisted of: caramel popcorn, chocolate bars in custom wrappers, train sugar cookies, red velvet cupcakes, blue & red jelly jars, oreo cookie pops, wild berry yogurt push pops, chocolate ripple cake and fruit skewers (of which I used a train shape cookie cutter to cut the watermelon pieces).
Caramel popcorn in Mon Tresor boxes
Chocolate bars in custom wrappers
Red velvet cupcakes with cream cheese frosting
Cupcake toppers from the Parties By Hardie collection
Wildberry yogurt "push pops"
My first attempt at sugar cookies and working with fondant! eeek!!!
Oreo cookie pops
Fruit sticks (note watermelon cut into train shape!)
Chocolate ripple cake with shards of blue & red chocolate
Blue and red jelly jars
"Aidan" name stamp from Sweet Style
I also had lolly jars filled with red & blue candy: jaffas, bon bons, jelly beans, raspberries, sour straps and clouds.
I used my vintage wooden compartment box to hold 4 types of lollipops – train shape suckers, swirl sticks, rock crystal sticks & swirl lollipops.
The birthday cake was BEYOND AMAZING! My wonderful friend, Kylie Bourban, created a fabulous train & carriages cake to match my theme perfectly! The train and carriages were each a different flavour: chocolate mud, white chocolate mud, jaffa mud & banana mud. Yum! Yum!
Birthday cake by Kylie Bourban
To drink, I served raspberry cordial and iced water in my glass beverage dispensers from Lily Chic Events, along with mini glass bottles with red & blue paper
straws. I also used printable drink bottle wrappers from Parties By Hardie for the kids pop top juices.
Cute little prop I bought off ebay
Pretty paper straws
"Chugga-Chugga" drink bottle labels from Parties by Hardie - how cute!
and "Chew-Chew" cutlery wrappers as well!
To set the scene, I had my cousin dress as the “Fat Controller” (or as he is officially known, "Sir Topham Hatt") and he greeted guests as they arrived. I made train boom gates and had them positioned along a train track we stuck on the ground using black tape. I also made a “Railway Crossing” traffic sign and had a STOP sign along the tracks.
STOP sign, with black taped train track on ground to lead guests into party
A real metal train station sign I bought off ebay and painted
Boom gates and "Railway Crossing" sign
For entertainment, I hired a Thomas jumping castle and a motorised ride-on train (which we called “The Aidan Express”) to give the children train rides throughout the afternoon, which was a huge hit!
"The Aidan Express"
My two precious boys having a ride on the train!
The children received lots of little train paraphernalia to take home – train shaped crayons, train whistles, train driver hats and train drink bottles. I also had wooden train toys that the children were able to paint themselves and take home.
Choo Choo bars & train crayons from Ivy Lane Designs
The kids table where each child received a train hat, train ring & train drink bottle
Overall the party was "choo-choo" fun and my little man had an absolute blast with his little friends. I just had to share some photos of Aidan as he arrived at the party and saw what his mummy had created for him. It's just priceless and makes all the hard work so very worthwhile when you see that look of awe and amazement on your childs face!
Aidan arriving at his party
A little apprehensive and in awe!
So much to look at and take in all at once!
Just having the best time! Happy Birthday darling boy. Love you xx
I have to say a very big thankyou to Lee Bird Photography
for coming along at such notice! My original photographer got stuck in Sydney with the Qantas airline cancellations and sadly couldn't make it back in time. However Lee Bird was just so wonderful to work with and I'm sure you'll all agree has some very special photography talent! I love how she edited the photos with a vintage treatment. Thank you so much Liat!
I am also SUPER EXCITED that Aidan's party has been featured on the amazing queen of dessert tables blog... Amy Atlas
! This is my 3rd feature on Amy Atlas and I am beyond ecstatic! Thankyou Amy & Lisa xxSome other vendor credits I must mention:
Photography - Lee Bird Photography
Printable Stationary - Parties By Hardie
Birthday Cake - Kylie Bourban
Train Crayons - Ivy Lane Designs
Jumping Castle - Speciality Castles
Trackless Train Ride - A&A Jumping Castles