Saturday, March 12, 2011

Fancy Schmancy!

Bonjour my friends! Have you heard of Fancy Nancy? This series of books is about a little girl who loves to be fancy. She dresses without a filter, she speaks with french words, because they sound fancy, and she is a craft stores dream come true. My daughter loves her, so for her 4th birthday party, we decided to make our own interpretation. 

For those of you back home who have been wanting to see how Sydney's birthday party turned out, I thought I'd post a few pics. The tea party went off without a hitch and all the girls were having a ball (us moms had a good time too!).

The first thing I had to do is set the tone with the invite. I think Syd and I went crazy with this, but it was a fun project to do together.  Since her birthday was close to Valentines Day it was easy to find lots of pink and red things, but I really tried to find items that you'd use year round. We bought plain white paper heart cards (a valentines package from Michael's). I think it was 25 in a package for about $1.50. We also purchased from Michael's: pink feathers, spools of $1.00 bin ribbon, rhinestone stickers (these were the pricey item at $3.00 a package, but they went a long way), polka dot pink silk daises (I think it was about $2.50 for a package of 6), a few sheets of printed paper, 69 cents a piece, and I went to a fabric store to buy sunglass buttons. The rest was just wording it elaborately (that's fancy for fancy) and placing it all together on the invites. The key to a Fancy Nancy party is decorating without reservation. If you think you haven't done enough....chances are you haven't. In fact, I think our party was a little on the restrained side.

Along with the look of the character Fancy Nancy, I tried to match the same font from the book and include many of the  cute words she says...Ooh La La is always a favorite around here.

The next thing to do was to work on the party favors. My daughter was very insistent on setting the dining table for her guests, so instead of making separate name cards for each place setting, I incorporated the party favors and the place cards in one...a purse, of course. What else does a fancy little girl need? Again, to Michael's for unfinished purse boxes, they are really inexpensive @ $1.50 a piece plus I had a coupon (I know friends, yes, don't fall over...I used a coupon!!!)
I bought two different shapes of boxes, my thought was to alternate on the table for interest.
I then gathered up all the spare paint in the house, and decided on a pink and green color scheme. I already had extra striped ribbon from the invites (see abv.) which would go perfectly.   I painted pink on the top and taped off a square edge when it dried and then painted green on the bottom half. I hot glued ribbon around the center and for an extra touch, glued a felt flower button in the center of the ribbon on one side. At the handle I wrapped a green paper butterfly on one side (if you didn't know, Fancy Nancy and her BFF Bree are obsessed with butterflies so this theme carries throughout as well).

So that each girl had a personalized purse, I printed out their names onto the same printed paper I used for the invites (I laminated each "tag" so that it was waterproofed) and tied it to the handle with a ribbon. For the finishing touch, I put an extra rhinestone next to their name.

On the name tag I used the same font from the invitations again, added a little "bling" for an extra sparkle and laminated them for durability. (Sydney and friends are a sophisticated bunch, but are still only 3-4 years old!!!)
 Of course, my daughter wanted hers to match her ensemble (that's french for outfit!!!). So, since I had black (her signature color of course) and white, plus a little orange for interest, she got her own special birthday purse.

Sydney wanted to be a monarch butterfly, hence the tangerine accent!

The next thing I did was buy some fabric for the table as a runner, I knew I wanted a table cloth, but sometimes the paper ones from the party store are just as expensive as a yard or two of fabric,especially if you buy a close out from Wal-mart!!! By the way...I did not know Wal-mart sold fabric by the yard, this is a very good find for children's projects. Most of their fabrics are $4.95 a yard. Since butterflies was a secondary theme, we chose a pretty pink fabric with lots of colors and black accents and it was a close-out, so we spent $2.00 per yard. Now that the party is over, I'm going to have a skirt made for Sydney for the summer time and maybe make a few cushions for her dolls.

Along with the table cloth, I wanted to make some fabric bunting (pennant shaped streamers) to hang across the dining room for color. My thought again here is that once the party is over, I could hang the bunting out back between trees for a summer time tea party or in the play room for additional whimsy. I bought 1 yd. of a  polka dot fabric which coordinated with the butterfly fabric and alternated with a few gingham remnants I had laying around for a few years. I made a template with white card stock paper of the triangle shape I wanted to  have and traced with pencil directly on the fabric. I just cut out the shapes and hot-glued them onto a string. I will tell you this did take some time, so if you are not totally insane, do not try this at home. They actually sell party bunting, but it comes with a price. I even found a website called that sells all kinds of "Eco-friendly" party products like this bunting, which runs around $30.00 for a 5 ft. long banner (ouch).
This bunting can run $30.00 for a 5 ft. long string.

 I made, for about $7.00, two 10 ft. long banners with left over fabric for another table cloth and perhaps another super cute skirt/sundress for the summer.

The next thing to do was to add some interest to the table setting. In addition to flowers, Sydney and I wanted to create a sweet treat everyone can take home so we made lollipop bouquets, another suggestion from our dear friend Nancy. This is what you need to do. First buy large marshmallows, we used strawberry ones since they are pink. Attach the marshmallows to lollipop sticks, which you can buy at a craft store. Then dip them in chocolate first, and then in sprinkles. For the finishing touch, add a ribbon for the leaves and put them in small vases  filled with candy. Voila!
This is where it helped to have Valentines right before, since we were able to find pink/white/red heart sprinkles and
 M & M's. 
For the flowers, I used my trusty fish bowls again (I will "branch" out eventually from these buggers, but they do work for me). I found hot pink daises and yellow mums in a mixed bunch and separated them out. I tied a bow around the bowl to make it "fancier" and placed a few butterflies on the top.
Added bonus is that the water turned pink from the dyed  flowers. Normally this would gross me out, but it was perfect for this!
Other small touches were butterflies on the light fixtures, tulle tied around napkins, rhinestones on our silverware (silver looking plastic cutlery of course) sandwiches in the shape of hearts and stars, butterfly wings for all the girls to take home, and a bead station for making necklaces. And of course as Nancy always does, an easel welcoming guest with balloons.
The picture is not as cool as it was in person, I wrapped tulle, knotted in places around the center of the glass and then hung butterflies around the tulle and from ribbons.

For the "moms" table, I made a little more reserved version with one ribbon around the center and a few butterflies.

I cut pink tulle into strips and just tied a knot around the napkins, cloth of course!!!

I used the left over fabric from the bunting project for the bead table and also lined the bottom with tulle. Beads were from Michael's.

There's my version of Fancy Nancy, in black of course, her favorite color to wear, and the glasses never came off.

This is a sample of Nancy's use of her easel. She uses it a lot for different events.
It's nice to have something outside so the guests can find your home, and get excited to come in!!!
So, whether this is your "cup of tea" or not, it's fun to turn the off button on your design filter and have a little fun. Was it slightly on the tacky side....perhaps....but it wouldn't be like Fancy Nancy if we didn't push the envelope.  Au Revoir until next time.


  1. Oh my gosh you are so talented! What an amazing party! Perhaps a new business venture for you?! Lily was just asking when we are going to see Asher & Sydney again! Miss and love you!! Xoxo

  2. Beautiful, wonderful party for a sweet, stylish and beautiful/wonderful girl!

    Mom says: "What is the cut-off age to have a Fancy Nancy party?"

  3. hi tiffany! wow! i love her party decorations. it is so fanciful and little girl cute. i bet her friends were enchanted! thanks for sharing your fun party ideas.

  4. holy crap. norah can never ever ever get wind of this. my life will be over. i cannot even stand those purses. where did you get all the butterflies? seriously over the top beautiful. if those moms didn't just poop their pants when they walked in then you better pack up and move back here where your genius will be most appreciated by me and my kid. : )