Ahhh, the “movie party” – the low cost, low hassle way to celebrate a little one’s birthday! Movie parties are a great way to create a birthday theme around a popular kids movie without having to hire in expensive entertainment (ever priced superheroes to appear at a birthday party – LORDY!). It’s simple, affordable and a big hit with little people! Best of all, if it’s something your child loves, as they grow, the humble movie party gets renamed a “slumber party”. You could be in for a whole childhood of low hassle birthday party ideas!
Movie Party Decorations
Will it be all about the movies or all about a particular movie?
If it’s just a general obsession with movies, consider Star themed balloons and decorations. These are readily available and pretty affordable. They’re also very simple to make for crafty mums on a bit of a budget. Use gold art paper to create party bunting or, if you’re really keen, create “Hollywood Stars” for each guest to decorate your drive way or party room!
Is it more about the current movie obsession in your home? If you can recite every word from Frozen or Cars, you’re probably looking at the price of movie merchandise and gritting your teeth!
This is where you simply raid your child’s toy box! If your little one is obsessed with a particular movie, it’s time to break out the figurines, posters and other “merchandise” that family and friends have gifted to use as decorations for your party. If the movie is no longer in cinemas you may be able to find the “promotional cut outs” on eBay or simply by asking your local cinemas. If you have the resources, you could create a Red Carpet entry and “photo opportunity” with the promo board.
If it’s a blockbuster kid’s favourite, you’ll also find cheap and cheerful party products on sites like Aliexpress. These are especially good for cake toppers, party bags, plates and other branded party products. Be warned though, you will need to order WELL in advance. The sooner you start planning, the more affordable your movie party will be.
Movie Party Food
The best news about movie parties is that the food is cheap and easy to organise. The secret to show stopper party food? McDonalds cup trays. Yep, your local McDonalds will, if asked nicely probably give you enough cup trays to cater to your little party guests (if not, try another one, they’re everywhere after all!)
How to create a Movie Party Snack Tray
Brisbane mum Karla shares her hints and tips:
What you need:
- Takeaway cup trays from your local McDonalds
- Themed cups in different sizes (available at dollar stores)
- Small containers (available at Woolworths – or ask your local Thai place for sauce containers)
- Serviettes in your theme colour (available at dollar stores)
- Washi tape or something similar to label/decorate front
- Permanent marker
TIP: I grabbed extra take away trays weeks in advance and ended up still only accruing five. I very nicely asked for some from McDonald’s and they gave me the rest, which was fabulous!
How to create your snack trays:
- Place a layer of washi tape around the front and label each tray with the names of your party guests.
- Place the cups in where you want, keeping in mind that it’s best to have the drink at the back (and a lid) for less spillage.
- Fill the cups with whatever you desire. I had lightly flavoured mineral water, popcorn, and potato chips. You could also swap a cup out for a small bottle of water if you don’t want to be offering flavoured drinks.
- Pop a little container with a lolly mix in the other remaining cup holder hole. I also stuck a lolly pop in the cardboard.
- Line the middle with a serviette. These had home-made pizzas that were served on top of the napkin. It’s also the perfect size for a hot dog!
Movie Party Loot Bags
If your child is obsessed with a particular movie, you can purchase cheap party merchandise from low cost overseas sites or from eBay. As these tend to be the most expensive item in the loot bag, choose just one themed item and then finish your party bags using trinkets and sweets that fit with theme of the movie or the colour scheme of the party. Loot bags are a big deal for little party goers but being a little bit creative can keep the cost of these down.
Some ideas for movie themed loot bags:
- Use large “popcorn cups” available at most dollar stores in lieu of a party bag
- Disposable 3D glasses
- Individual bags of popping corn
- Individual bags of M&Ms
- Mini bottles of bubbles decorated with stickers from theme movie
- “Trick” water squirting cameras (available in six packs for $2-$4 from dollar stores)
- Mini chocolate blocks re-wrapped to look like cinema tickets (Aldi sells five packs cheaply, create the cinema ticket and print yourself)
- “Star” themed trinkets and sweets
Like the movies themselves, kid’s movie parties can be budget (let’s call it Arthouse shall we?) or blockbuster! Your movie party is going to delight your little guests whether it’s big budget or 100% creative.