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Lil’ Pumpkin — Cupcake Dreams & Candle Wishes: Part I

Just last month, my best friends daughter, Mollie Kate celebrated her second birthday. Little does she know it, but her mother and I have already decided that she is going to marry my two-year-old son. That way we can spend holidays together!

Rhonda e-mailed me wanting ideas and help with planning Mollie’s party, so I wholeheartedly offered my services free-of-charge. Best friends always get freebies for all previous services rendered, like listening to you vent or blubber on numerous occasions. She finally settled on a pumpkin theme and we went with the tag line “Our Lil’ Pumpkin”. I e-mailed her quite a few ideas for cakes, favors and of course designed her invitations, which I had a blast doing. I am quite fond of pumpkins and the fall is one of my favorite seasons, so inspiration was easy to come by.

She made an adorable pumpkin shaped cake/cupcakes, had the kids paint tiny pint-sized pumpkins and handed out handmade cloth pumpkins for favors. I only have a few pictures she sent me from the party, but below you will find several ideas for this fun and festive party along with instructions for making the cloth pumpkins. There are also pictures of the invitations that she printed out from the pdf I sent her. I think they turned out well! If you would like to order these invitations from The Blu Sash we can customize a pdf for you to print out and make yourself or we can send you customized, completed versions ready for mailing. Please call 859.271.6934 or e-mail for a quote!

LIL’ PUMPKIN: The Invitations
The invitations were four, 4.25″x 5.5″ cards tied together at the top left corner with several different patterned and coordinating ribbons. The back of each card had a picture of Mollie Kate that family and friends could keep. Three of the four cards were informational and the last card had a recipe for pumpkin spice muffins. I love designing invitations that prove useful in other ways. It allows people to interact with your invitation and connect you to them in a small, but special way. With the photos and recipes hopefully these cards will be kept for some time.

Due to the distance between us and time constraints, I was unable to produce these and ship them to her with enough time for her to mail them out in a timely fashion. We decided that I would e-mail her the pdf that she could then print them out at home or a local shop and produce them herself. I think she did a great job with them as evidenced by her photos.

The final product product — Adorable!

A close up of the invitation tied up with green polka-dotted ribbon.

Cloth Pumpkin Favors:
I suggested this idea to Rhonda for favors — cloth pumpkins. A very talented and creative friend of mine once made me some cloth pumpkins as a gift and I still decorate with them every year. I had been waiting for the perfect opportunity to use these as favors and here it was. Rhonda ran with the suggestion and found some easy “how to directions” you can find below. The end product was an absolutely adorable favor that even mom would want to keep around the house!

Just a word of caution. Be sure that the age you are making these for won’t potentially injure themselves with the sticks on these mini pumpkins. If you are worried about that, substitute stems made from pipe cleaners (folded in half and twisted down), floral tape or sewn cloth stems. If you have any other ideas for soft stems, please feel free to make a comment or suggestion.

Cloth Pumpkin How To
Materials needed:
• Fat quarters (purchase different prints of orange and green – one fat quarter per pumpkin)
• Dinner plate (for tracing purposes)
• Orange thread and a needle
• Poly fill
• Small sticks from a tree (or other softer stem options)
• Fabric pen or pencil
• Patterned or coordinating ribbon

1) Use your dinner plate to trace a circle on the orange patterned fat quarter.
2) Knot one end of your thread and sew a running stitch around the circle about 1/4 inch from edge, leaving your thread long so you can pull the loose end causing the fabric to pucker and pull it into a bowl-like pocket.
3) Fill the hole in the top of the pumpkin with poly fill.
4) Tighten the top of the pumpkin with the thread and knot it closed.
5) Cut simple leaves out of the green fabric or fat quarters, cutting a tiny hole in the leaf for your stick.
6) Insert the stick down into the hole on the top of the pumpkin. If you would like, you can hot glue the stick into the hole for extra security.
7) Finish it off with a cute, festive ribbon!

Who wouldn’t want to take one of these home?

Lil’ Pumpkin Party Ideas:
Here are some other great ideas and useful links for your Lil’ Pumpkin party:

Pumpkin Patch Cupcakes:
Martha Stewart had some adorable Pumpkin Patch Cupcakes on her site. If you want to save on time substitute the candy corn pumpkins for the handmade marzipan pumpkins.

The Great Pumpkin Cake:
I love this cake! I’ve made it for Thanksgiving before and it’s delicious! It’s not that difficult either.
Martha Stewart has some great ideas and delicious recipes. It could easily be decorated in a more “kid-friendly” manner and would make a great party cake. Instead of chocolate leaves you could easily make sugar cookie leaves, frosting vines and use a cinnamon stick for a stem. Try making your child’s name a part of the curly vines that hang down.

Pumpkin Favor Pouches:
I stumbled across this idea when searching for favors and fell in love with them. My thought was that you could stuff the cloth pumpkin favors pictured above with candy instead of poly-fill like they do with these crepe paper pumpkins. These look fairly easy to make and I am sure kids would love them.

Pumpkin Party Games:
What is a party without games? Here are some ideas that ages 2-10 would enjoy.

Pin the Leaf on the Pumpkin: Cut out a large pumpkin from a pattern and hang on the wall. Use a large leaf cookie cutter or other pattern to make the leaves from green tag board. Vines can be made from green curly ribbon.

Pumpkin Bowling: Use 4 small, round pie pumpkins you can find at the grocery or local farmers market as the bowling balls. Then collect 10 empty 2-liters, 1/2 filled with water for use as the bowling pins.

Pumpkin Ring Toss:
Choose several pumpkins with large, straight stems in various sizes (large and small) and purchase a set of rings for tossing around the stems.

Pumpkin Painting:
Purchase a mini-pumpkin for each guest and provide paint and brushes for each guest to decorate their own pumpkin. You might think about a washable paint or making sure this activity is done outside or on a well-protected surface.

Pumpkin Mini-Golf: Carve several golf “holes” from various sizes and shapes of pumpkins. Be creative and you can have a delightful pumpkin mini-golf course for the kids to enjoy. Purchase some small plastic clubs and they will have a blast.

Here’s to a great party for your lil’ pumpkin!

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