In a very inactive, sort of fashion blog by a literature grad student, it seems totally appropriate to break a months-long blog silence with pictures from my son’s Harry Potter-themed birthday party that happened, incidentally, several months ago. Yes, yes, of course.
When I’m not being really bad about updating this blog or doing whatever it is grad students do (read, write, grade papers, rinse and repeat), I really love planning parties. My grandmother, who raised five kids and nobody got a birthday party every year and when they did it was cake, sing happy birthday, play pin the tail on the donkey and say goodbye, thinks I’m crazy, but I love me a themed party. When my oldest son was obsessed with Thomas the Train, I bought a train-shaped cake pan (that made individually-sized train cars), decorated the train with candy, and made a track on a cake board with black licorice. It was awesome. One year we threw a monster party for my younger son complete with monster cupcakes with googly eyes. And also slime (can’t have a monster party without slime!).
But considering my own irrepressible obsession with the Harry Potter universe, you can imagine how happy I was when my older son asked for a Harry Potter party for his 7th birthday. I’ve been reading the books to him at bedtime for the past year or so, and I told him he could screen the first movie at his party since we had just finished the first book. (Obviously, it is a serious rule in our household that one may not watch a film based on a book before reading the actual book.)
I did so much work for this party. It was insane. But, in the end, it was the most awesome party ever, and my son still talks about it being one of the best days of his (very-distinguished-at-age-seven) life. Most of the pictures I took with my real camera were of the kids so excuse the instagramy nature of these images:
Guests were greeted by a Chinese Fireball dragon, which guarded the entrance to Gringotts, where the children were given the key to their vault and collected a sack of galleons.
At Diagon Alley, the children bought a copy of The Standard Book of Spells: Grade 1 (yes, inside is actual text about various spells from the Harry Potter wiki, compiled by yours truly into an actual spellbook) and quills. The quills and many of the other paper goods from the party were from PropPrintables, an etsy shop chock full of the most amazing HP-themed printables.
The children then continued on to Ollivanders, where a wand chose each child. (Wands were bought unfinished at another great etsy shop Party Scribbles and then I spray painted them brown. Each wand came with a little tag indicating the wood and wand core!)
Finally, the children entered through Platform 9 3/4…
and finally arrived at Hogwarts to study potions with Professor Snape! (Our dining room was done up as the great hall, but I never managed to get a picture.)
Our fireplace the Dursley’s fireplace on the morning when all the letters burst through it.
Of course, the Dursley’s would never had floo powder in their house!
Finally, the children had a Hogsmeade weekend right before the film started and were able to visit Honeydukes for Chocolate Frogs, Squeaking Sugar Mice, Licorice Wands, Sweet Slytherins, Dumbledore’s favorite Serbert Lemons, Bertie Bott’s Every Flavor Beans. The amazing candy containers were from PropPrintables. But, let me tell you, the cutting and the folding and the gluing of all those candy containers is not for the faint of heart.
Can you just make out he adult beverages on the counter above? Yes, that was a nice touch, if I do say so myself.
And here I am in my Ravenclaw robes (I was, of course, Head of Ravenclaw). If you look closely, you can see I’m wearing dirigible plum earrings. (10 points to your house if you know what those are!) You can see the Sorting Hat in the foreground (all the children were sorted).
There was also a golden snitch cake (specially requested by the birthday boy), which was probably the most difficult cake I’ve ever done (let me tell you about those wings), and of course it fell apart just as I was transporting it the four feet from the kitchen to the dining room. But even so, the kids loved it. Still, no pictures of the broken cake for the internets.