When my daughter Boston started planning her fifth birthday party six months before the actual date, she considered every theme imaginable for her big day. Barbie, horses, unicorns, parades, bicycles--you name it.
She finally narrowed it down to her two passions: princesses and camping. Unable to decide between the two, she combined them into one theme: Sleeping Beauty Goes Camping.
Since I enjoy sewing, the Sleeping Beauty party had several handmade touches. The favors, several of the gifts, two dresses and a tabletop decoration were all homemade.
By DIYing it, I kept costs to about $175--$25 more than what I had budgeted, but still reasonable considering all the elements of the party. That total includes the gifts.
The best part about the party was how involved Boston was in the planning and execution. From folding the invitations to frosting cupcakes, this birthday girl played an important role in the process.
-Megan Cooley, About.com Guide to Kids Parties and Celebrations