When I was growing up, I loved seeing the Pennsylvania Ballet perform The Nutcracker at the Academy of Music in Philadelphia at Christmas time. I mooned over Baryshnikov in his performance in The Nutcracker on PBS. The Nutcracker has always been part of my Christmas memories, and a memory I hope to pass on to my daughter.
This past weekend, we had a family birthday party for my daughter’s 5th birthday. Starting a few years ago, I have been doing a Nutcracker theme for her birthday, taking advantage of Christmas decorations we already have, plus a few I add each year. The original inspiration came from Like Merchant Ships. However, this year, this tutu birthday party was my inspiration. Most of my supplies came from the craft store, Michael’s. The ornaments are from Walmart, either last year or the year before. I think they ran about $1.50 per ornament.
The party favors which aren’t pictured were little cardboard houses, available at Michael’s. A set of 4 was $1.99. Inside we put a holiday eraser and a felt penguin sticker. Each house had a ribbon for hanging.
I concentrated most of the Nutcracker party decorations in our dining room which serves as the food area for our parties. I festooned this black mirror (trash picked and repainted) with white and pink tulle.
I put 3M Command hooks up on our archway and used them to drape more white and pink tulle. The candy ornaments came from Walmart.
More 3M hooks hold more tulle in place, along with ornaments from Walmart.
I used very thin ribbon I found in the ribbon section at Michael’s Craft store to tie the ornaments in place. In keeping with the silver them, I used silver bobble ribbon.
I kept my bows very simple. All I did was tie them in place. I also used long pieces of ribbon for each bow, allowing me to reuse the ribbon the following Christmas for decorating.
Since the 3M Command Medium Hooks are not supposed to hurt paint, I used them on the dining room wall and the molding around the window to support the light-weight tulle. After the party I left up the hooks on the window and kept the ornaments on them.
I found this plate rack at Goodwill for a few dollars a few years ago and spray painted it espresso brown. The plates are from a set of china I picked up at a local hospital thrift shop. On the plates are the Russian tea cakes and snowflake sugar cookies we made and decorated on Thursday.
I picked up this bouquet of flowers at the local grocery store for $4.99. The tealights are battery-operated ones I found at The Dollar Store, and the tea light holders came from a thrift shop. The white square linen tablecloths are also thrift store finds for a few dollars each.
Cost of Nutcracker Party Supplies
- 3M Command Medium Hooks: $3.94
- 2 rolls of white tulle: $6.33
- 2 rolls of pink tulle: $6.33
- 2 rolls of silver and pink Christmas ribbon: $7.81
- 2 bags of favor boxes: $4.21
- erasers: $1.06
- felt stickers: $3.17
Total cost: $32.85