Wednesday, June 7, 2017

DIY Eiffel Tower

I'm pretty sure, if you are throwing a Paris themed birthday party, the expectation is that there will be Eiffel Tower decorations.  I mean, who goes to Paris, without even glancing at the Eiffel Tower, right?

I have plenty of small Eiffel Tower statues but when I think Eiffel Tower decorations, in my opinion, bigger is better.

If you are crazy enough that you'd want to make your own Cardboard Eiffel Tower, keep on reading...

Grab a ladder and some large cardboard boxes.  With your first piece of cardboard propped or pinned to your ladder, from behind, begin to trace the bottom of your Eiffel Tower.  The space between the inside of the ladder legs is perfect for the cut out at the bottom center of the Tower.  Trace along the inside using the ladder legs to guide for width. 

After tracing each section or part onto the cardboard, I'd cut that section out before moving on to the next section, adjusting my design as I went. I used the outside of the ladder to determine the width of the Eiffel Tower, again, tracing from the ladder side to determine the shape I used.

At the base, I also kept the flap, folded backwards for the ladder to rest on, providing additional support.

I used two pieces of cardboard to construct my Eiffel Tower.  At the base the cardboard piece went width-wise and the top {connected with tape from the back} I used length-wise.

I would have been happy keeping the Eiffel Tower propped against the ladder but the Mister didn't like the idea of 14 nine year old girls being able to climb to the top of the Eiffel Tower so he made a stand.

But, really, if you want to save yourself the trouble of making a stand, simply keep it clipped to the ladder...just like the picture below, the Eiffel Tower is propped against the ladder.

Once I finished tracing out the shape and cutting it down, I started working on the design. My ruler, pencil, eraser and some Google images of the Eiffel Tower were all that I needed.

In pencil, I drew out the design I thought worked best. I started with the bottom, which is why one side looks a little wonky, by the time I got to the middle, I worked out the kinks.  The key is to draw lines in sections all the way across the tower and work your Xs {or grid} spaced evenly between the lines.  

When my design was completed, I painted over my pattern with black paint.  I left the cardboard in it's natural state.

Once it was finished, I topped it with the French flag.  The perfect finishing touch.

Then, I let the Mister worry about how we would transport this 7 1/2 foot tall Eiffel Tower to the Paris party. 

Like any tourist, I was busy on getting the typical tourist pictures...because, if you are going to go to Paris, you need to get a picture in front of the Eiffel Tower.

Thursday, June 1, 2017

Love Locks

Love locks may have been the cause of controversy in Paris but for the sake of Grace's Paris themed birthday party they proved to the PERFECT decoration and party game.

My first mission, find at least 14 locks.  Locks, though, can be kind of expensive and my party planning motto is to try and be as frugal as possible.  The best option proved to be ordering a case, which included 24 locks, from the Dollar Store.  The locks were just what a wanted but I decided to dress each one up with some fun paper gem tags that I made.  The tags added a little color and style to the locks.

Originally, I was going to hide the locks around the party room we rented and send the girls off with keys on a hunt to find the match.  One day, though, I noticed my neighbor had an unused gate leaning against her fence and inspiration struck {and fortunately, I have a great neighbor who happily gave me her gate}. 

And, that is how my Love Locks Game came to be.  With my new gate acting as the pont des arts, I hung 24 locks with the keys attached.

Since we had a few extra locks, I couldn't help but decorate one for myself, before the party.

During the party, each girl was asked to take a set of keys out of the lock and stand in a circle.  I called out various things like, trade keys with the person to your right or trade keys with someone wearing something French themed.  When the keys were sufficiently switched around, they were free to try and locate where their matching lock was.

Once they succeeded in finding the match, they were able to decorate their love lock with permanent markers. It was interesting to see what a group of 9 year old girls love...

The decorated locks could be rehung on the gate or taken home to perhaps one day be placed on a love lock gate in Paris.

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