How to Plan th’ Best Ever scurvy Pirate Parrrty

Shindigz introduces a brand new Pirate Theme for your next Pirate Party for your kids.  And to set the mood, let’s slip into Pirate Speak:

You'll be the Best Mom with this Shindigz Pirate Party!

Ye’ll be th’ Best Mom wit’ ’tis Shindigz scurvy pirate parrrty!

Ahoy, Matey! Lookin’ fer a unique parrrty to throw fer ye son or girly offsprin’? Have ye child invite all ‘o his or her pals over fer a scurvy pirate theme bash!

Start wit’ personalized invitation.

Pirate Photo Invitations

Pirate Photo Invitations

Welcome them wit’ a custom yard sign ‘n banner, ‘n then as they board th’ ship, deck them out wit’ an tattered eye patch, gold tooth, hat, scarf ‘n  hook!

Dress 'em up Pirate Style!

Dress ‘em up Pirate Style!

We’ve got plenty more scurvy pirate parrrty ideas at our scurvy pirate store, but first, take a couple ‘o minutes ‘n spy wit’ ye eye how parrrty Plannin’ Pro Wendy ‘n her sidekick Mary prepare fer a scurvy pirate parrrty:

Shindigz also found a collection ‘o scurvy pirate parrrty grub ideas to feed ye crew!

Have a Dino-Blast Birthday!

Some birthday party themes practically beg for over-the-top decorations, activities and favors.

That’s how Dino Blast came to be. Dino Blast is the latest addition to animal birthday party themes and it is extreme, kind of like petting a velociraptor only without the risk of being devoured (except by children in the pretend sort of way).

This party collection is also designed to get you tagged “bestest mom ever” just by mixing up a Mesozoic stew as follows:

1. Grow a jungle. You’ll want to turn the place green generally, and then add strategically-placed 3D foliage.

First, choose a focal point. Most often that will be a wall or corner, in which case you’ll want to begin by placing a background of some sort on or against the walls. You have a delightful array of choices; here’s a sample:

  • A banner or photo illustration such as our forest backdrop. These come in three materials (photo paper, cardboard and vinyl) and a half-dozen sizes – and you can personalize them.
  • Tropical Foliage patterned flat paper and Sticky Tac.
  • Gossamer in a palm leaf or green mottled design. Sew a pocket along one long side and trade out your usual window treatment (a patio door would be perfect) or use a couple free-standing Showstopper curtain frames.

Continue building out from the wall. You can plant palm trees and scatter grass, and criss-cross the ceiling with streamers or cover it with light and dark green balloons. A few dinosaur footprint decals would be a nice touch here, too.

2. Populate the habitat. Though it depends on the age group, in general we love inflatable wildlife for this theme because they can be handled, and your choice in inflatable dinos has never been better.

We like big for dinosaurs! Brachiosaurus is 45 inches long and more than 2 feet high, and one party planner commented on the pteranodon: “The wingspan in amazing.” (It’s 65 inches.)

Another way to stop them in their tracks is to make a home for one of our new land-going giants, the 10-foot-long triceratops or the towering T-Rex you see here. Just imagine the looks on their faces, and what imaginative play it might inspire.

The little partygoers themselves will happily transform as well, so be sure to check out our T-Rex, triceratops and pteranodon wearables as favors.

3. Feed the animals. After the kids are a tad tired out from relay races and chasing games, it’s time for some dino chow.

You’ll want to have a “wowza” table so they’ll be eager to leave the other activities behind. In the photo above you see we’ve done this not only with an attractive display overall but also with the prospect of exploring a tabletop sandbox an archeological dig.

Young dinosaurs like to play with their food, so we recommend a dino snack mix. This one by The Room Mom is a good example, and would also look tempting in our personalized do-it-yourself favor bags.

Ready for Dino Blast? You are just seconds away from dino-riffic birthday party planning!

Welcome to Your New House! Ideas for Your Home Warming Party

Take a page from the book of domestic best wishes and make your home a center of warmth, light and life for the occasion of your house warming party.

Plants = Life. Plants symbolize the wish, “May your home always have life.” The colors you choose can reflect this wish, and this time of year there’s no better way to go than the hues of spring regeneration.

To start, visit the shop-by-color store. This year we are leaning toward a citrus green paired with fresh white and accented with pastel flower colors such as yellow, pink or lavender. A bright green with hot pink would mod-ify the space; a sky blue with white would reflect more serenity but still be in keeping with a bright spring day.

As you ponder your color options, you’ll also notice materials that are available for covering large areas for different effects:

  • Corrugated paper is 4 feet wide, which is perfect for instant wall wainscoting.

  • Lengths of gossamer covering walls, windows or ceiling can soften a room, and patterns (e.g., clouds against blue sky) can transform.

  • Floral sheeting as table runners adds touchable texture.

These background materials are fun to use on their own merits, but they also mean you have fill-in décor for wherever your home may still be under-furnished or unpacked!

Light = Light. Lights symbolize the wish, “May you always have light through the dark times.” Here are just a few ways to provide restrained, gentle light:

  • Line the main walkway to the house with luminarias. We have the old-fashioned kind for purists, but also new LED and electric options. Our personalized white luminary bags would be perfect for a house warming with a photo of the household and welcome message for the guests.

  • Create a focal point with one or more LED trees with white, green or blue bulbs. (Please note that you will not find a better price on a quality, 7-foot prelit tree.)

  • Paper lanterns – for ceiling or floor – will not only bring festive lighting but also color to an oft-neglected space.

The traditional way to bring the wish for light is with candles, so candle favors are a natural here. Shop our DIY favor pages for the raw materials and embellishments to coordinate a votive style with the rest of the décor and to make them your own.

Wood = Warmth. Wood symbolizes the wish, “May you enjoy warmth, peace and stability.”

Of course your colors, flowers and lights have already put you on a warm path. What will progress the theme further is tying your look together with accents that are rustic, homespun and/or natural. Examples:

  • Place 4” pots of spring flowers in tin buckets; finish with raffia bows.

  • Choose a whimsical icon, such as a retro flower or butterfly, which you can incorporate into the décor as props, wall cutouts and/or tableware.

  • Embellish tables, doorways and handrails with a leaf garland from the Garden Party store.

We hope this gives you food for thought about your house warming get-together – and may you always make life more fun!

Recreate Rio at Your Brazilian Themed Mardi Gras


A fantasy festival in your own backyard

The two names synonymous with vibrant colors and extravagant décor – Rio and Mardi Gras. Both scream of beautiful scenery and grand events. And with the help of a dramatic chromatic blend, you can recreate Rio a Brazilian themed Mardi Gras.

The one thing that stands between you and a wild night of festivities is a highly decorated and colorful blend of blues, golds, purples, and greens vividly coloring every aspect of the event venue. Hosting an outdoor/backyard Brazilian themed Mardi Gras in the summer will graciously embrace the eroticism of Brazil and warmth of South America. But, that’s merely a suggestion. Any time you bring the excitement of Mardi Gras to a party, you know you’re in for a fun night.

Begin by setting the scene. Have guests enter the extravaganza by walking up under the archway of Brazilian romance. Outline the archway with alternating strings of metallic gold, purple, green and silver balloons and stringed globe lights. Line the entrance to your yard with metallic gossamer to create a grand Rio walkway.

Inside your yard, place small masquerade ball masks around your space or buffet table. Have Mardi Gras inspired tables set up for your guests to enjoy your Brazilian dinner spread. At each table setting, place a Mardi Gras sequin mask as a party favor for each of your guests. Adorn your tables with Mardi Gras confetti wildly spread about each table. Your backyard will make even artists envious as the beauty of the bold color combination come to life.

Light up your Rio themed Mardi Gras party

Light up your Rio themed Mardi Gras party

The Spread

Of course, what’s any good party without good food and good drinks? And what would Mardi Gras be without a buffet of delicious party favorites? Cocktail wieners, buffalo wings, shrimp Diablo, and buffalo chip dip will all add a little Latin spice to your party go-ers. But, to sweeten things up, decorate a candy buffet with purple and green jelly beans, gold coins, silver wrapped Hershey kisses, and green – purple – and white spiced gum drops. Intertwine strings of colorful party beads and lights around your candy dishware. Line your candy buffet with fabric bunting. And don’t forget a drink table or bar. Since Mardi Gras is all about eating and drinking, be sure to have plenty of both. Offer signature or specialty drinks – such as “party pina coladas” and “Mardi Gras martinis.” Give them fun names and use food coloring to add to the festive colors of the event.

Get the Word Out

Everyone knows that at a Mardi Gras party, the more the merrier. So, if you haven’t yet used or aren’t familiar with the Party Crashers app for any smart phone, you should learn… and quick! With the Party Crashers app, the way you party is revolutionized. Ditch the dated party days of hand writing party invitations, mailing them out, and hoping the invitations don’t get lost in the shuffle of your family and friend’s mail. With the Party Crashers app, you can simply set up a party event, add the details – like attire, music, drinks, date and time – and “send out” the invites with a scroll through your email and social networking lists. And for added fun, you can open the event up to the public, making it “crashable.” Sit back and watch just who shows up to crash the party. Friends, family, and party crashers everywhere have the ease of party locating in the simplicity of their smartphone app.

There ain't no party like an app crasher party

There ain’t no party like an app crasher party

Nothing says Mardi Gras like good food, good fun, and lots of people… so for your next backyard event, turn up the heat with a little Brazilian bash.

Party Favors for Christmas

Party hearty — but also think outside the favor box and use Christmas party favors for many kinds of seasonal giving.

In the Neighborhood
Many of us love to share our own homemade treats this time of year with friends, neighbors and the professionals we see every day. A personalized container could be the perfect finishing touch for presentation.

  • Arrange cookies, candies and mini tarts in cookie tins
  • Candy jars can hold herb salt mixtures or secret-recipe spice rubs
  • Hand-crafted wines and beers deserve personalized bottle labels

If you are having a regular bash, jot down the name of the design you like for your labels and containers. Popular Christmas designs such as Traditional Ornaments, Blue Sky and the Sweet Christmas line will show up also in products for entertaining, including Christmas banners, coasters and invitations. Add coordinating solid color tableware to these items and you’ll be ready to rock your Christmas par-tay.

At Work and Play
Gift exchanges are a fun part of Christmas season life, but of course most of us are working with budgets so the question is how to give to office mates or teammates something nice without busting the Christmas Club account. Here are a few ideas under $5 each if you have a large enough group that you can take advantage of volume pricing:

More Gifting
We know a pair of newlyweds who are building their glassware collection; maybe you do too! Venture out from the Christmas party favors pages and check the newly expanded collection of unimprinted glassware for sophisticated flutes and sassy martini glasses.

For unique gifting, the Photo Puzzle might be just the ticket. Transform a favorite photo of the kids or grandkids, cherished pets or a dream vacation into a jigsaw for your favorite puzzle fan.

Along the way be sure to browse Stocking Stuffers for those small but thoughtful gifts: lip gloss for the resident princess, a silver keytag for the new driver in the family, or a plush animal for anyone who could use a new friend!


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