This is my daughter, and her trusty side-kick Julie. And when she asked for a “Pink Camouflage Adventure Birthday Party” (a serious mouthful of a theme) I whipped up the best one of those that I could!
Oh so inspired by my daughter’s love of the color pink and obsession with solving mysteries, we came up with the idea to use camouflage as a basic decoration for her theme. We decided that the main event of the party would be a “scavenger hunt” type of activity, so a globe, a compass, binoculars and some stars were only fitting elements to add to her decor.
You try finding ANY party decorations online or elsewhere that are pink camouflage. I looked, trust me, really hard. Now generally one might feel a little hopeless, and change the party theme, but not me… not when I have a direct hot line to the girls at Paper & Cake (its a free call too). Pennant banners, water bottle labels, cupcake picks, favor tags…. anything I could dream up – I designed, printed, cut out and installed – much to the dismay of my oh so patient husband.
Craft & Party Favors
The Craft and Party Favors for this party came hand in hand. I decided to create a “satchel” to contain adventure assisting equipment such as binoculars, spy sunglasses and bandanas. You know where I’m going with this…. yup, Aunt Janet to the rescue – again. I found some pink camo fabric at Jenny’s Fabric (in Fountain Valley for all you So. Cal residents), and picked up regular green camo fabric at Jo-Ann’s.
Using some webbing and d-rings I picked up at the Fabric Barn, my Aunt Janet, my mom and I came up with a “fanny pack” style bag using about 1/4 yard for each one. We had to make a total of 15 little bags, so they had to be super simple! I’ve attached some illustrated diagrams here for you to make your own. I bet you could even put these together with fabric glue if you don’t want to sew them.
Now that you’ve seen the party favor bag – here is what we did to make it part of the craft project of the party. Using borrowed stencils, and paint that I already had, I had the kids stencil their new camo fanny packs, with black, white or purple paint. Just open the flap up, and tape it to the table to keep it steady – we also taped the stencil if it was complex.
Although it took WAY too long to dry – it was totally worth it! (I ended up using a hair dryer on them while the kids ate snacks). They were so proud of their new packs!
Autumn also wanted a “Photo Booth” – adorable, right?
Using 2 boxes of cake mix, I made 2 six inch round cakes and 2 eight inch round cakes. After they cooled, I took a serrated knife and leveled them by cutting the tops off. Place the bottom layer of the 8 inch cake on a cardboard round (you can buy them or make your own) cover the top with filling or frosting, and put the top layer on. Repeat for the smaller cake. Keeping each two layer cake separate, “dirty ice” or frost with a thin layer of buttercream to make the surface smooth for the fondant to stick to. Refrigerate.
Now for the fun part!
when the fondant is rolled out, the “snakes” of shades of pink
fondant become the cornerstone of the Camouflage pattern
1) Buy or make fondant icing. The store bought kind has a chart on the side to tell how much you need for what size cake.
2) Pull out a chunk of fondant from the bucket and weigh it for the 8″ 2 layer cake, then add a bit of pink food coloring and knead it in. Pull off three much smaller pieces and add pink food coloring to make three additional shades of pink (light to dark).
3) Take your main piece of light pink fondant shape it into a 5-6″ disk, press several small snake shaped pieces of the other shades of pink fondant into it – do this randomly, with some overlapping.
4) Using a rolling pin and a bit of powder sugar (so it won’s stick to the work surface or the rolling pin) roll out the fondant to a thickness of no more thank 1/4″ thick.
5) Your rolled fondant piece will look like camouflage!
6) Place the rolled piece of fondant over the 8″ layer cake. Smooth the fondant over the top and along the sides using your hands, working it so there are no wrinkles. Trim off any excess fondant with a knife or pizza cutter.
7) Repeat with second layer cake.
The Decorative Border
cut WAY more than you think you might use… you will use them!
1) While the leftover fondant is still rolled out on the table, take a small biscuit cutter or pastry tip and cut circles out of the camouflage fondant.
2) Roll the circles into little fondant balls – they will all be fairly similar in size.
in serving the cake, you can see the construction of the top layer
1) Place the larger round cake on a plate or cake stand.
2) Take 3 straws, cut to the height of the 8″ layer cake, and insert them in a triangle pattern in the center area of the cake to support the weight of the 2nd tier.
3) Place the 6″ cake on top, in the center.
4) Put a small dot of leftover buttercream (in a pastry bag with a tip) at the base of the bottom cake and cover with a camo fondant ball – repeat, repeat, repeat until the bases of both stacked tiers are encircled with fondant balls.
My daughter is obsessed with mysteries and clues and scavenger hunts! That is why I planned on planning a scavenger hunt for the main event at her party. Unfortunately, it was scheduled to rain, and here in Southern California, if we go outside in the rain, we melt.
So, an indoor activity it was! I made 8 “challenge cards” for each individual child. The challenges ranged from simple codes (alphabet letters corresponding with numbers), map questions (where is New Orleans), to questions they had to “Google” to find the answer (my sister was in charge of helping the kids on the computer) to my absolute favorite: “Kid vs. Food” – eat a veggie (from the crudité platter) that you’ve never eaten before. That one was so funny!
I did use several of the challenges over again for different kids, like; draw a self portrait, put a puzzle together, or build a 3 ft tall tinker toy structure. And I did attempt to gear the question for the individual (age, sex, interest).
After solving one challenge, the child brought proof of their answer to the “Command Central” table – my friend Julia. Their challenge card was stamped and their passport (oh, I forgot to tell you about the passport) stamped as well. They exchanged their solved challenge for a new one, and after solving all of them (or as many as they wanted to) they received a bag of camouflage MnMs.
All in all, this party was well worth the effort – just look at that cute little girl…oops! I mean look at that grown up 8 year old, she loved every minute of it. Happy Birthday Autumn!
If your birthday girl is obsessed with all things solving-the-mystery, the party printables are available for purchase!
Invitation (Fits 5 Bar Envelope) +
Cone Party Hats
Jar Labels +
Pennant Banner +
Water Bottle Labels
Cake Topper +
Challenge Cards +
Passport Covers +
Favor Tags +
Front Door Sign +
Full Page Patterned Paper
+ Customizable item