Mad Hatter Tea Party Theme for Less! Tea Favors, Centerpieces and More!


Okay anyone who knows me knows I am a HUGE Alice in Wonderland aficionado. I even had an Alice in Wonderland Mad Tea Party shower planned by my best friend! I recently found some great deals if you are looking to plan a Mad Tea Party themed party. Here are some ways to do it on a budget! The cake pictured above was displayed at Sugarplum.


Seating Cards:

1. A simple deck of cards can be used for really creative seating cards. All you need to do is add the guests name and table number with a cool scrapbook paper cutout (teacup shaped perhaps?) and glue it to the solid side of the playing card. You can even have seating cards arranged on a table like a hand of cards for each table or letter of the alphabet!

2. Tea Bags! You can cover them with nice paper or put them in a sachet with the guests name and table and have them sitting in tea cups (courtesy of your venue!).

3. Paper Fans! You can find inexpensive like the ones below in many different colors! They are under $6 for 12! You can attach a guest’s name to the handle and have them open their fans to find the number inside!

4. Drink Me Straws…I love these!!!! You can have them displayed in fabric covered styrofoam with guests names and table numbers!


1. Tea Pots of course! Look at garage sales and consignment shops! You don’t want them to match and the funkier the better! You can fill them with fresh flowers and petals around them which will cut down on the expense of just a large floral arrangement. However start your teapot quest early…I tried this and found they weren’t as plentiful as I first expected!

2. Large Tea Cup Planters: You can find these at Michaels around spring and summer, you may even be able to catch them on clearance. The one below can be found at These are really pretty and can be filled with wheat grass, colorful floating candles or simple flowers. If you want to paint your own, you can get a set of 6Design Your Own Tea Cup Planters
from Amazon for $25.80.

3. Top Hats! You can find a top hat (not a paper shiny one, that would look tacky) made of fabric in different colors…(hello thrift shops and Halloween clearances!) and fill them with flower arrangements! Old pocket watches (working or not) can look great on the table as well!

4. You can also get Giant Playing Cards to use as table numbers and put them in picture stands to display them. You can use single cards for single digit tables and two cards side by side for the double digits. Kings can be used for the groom’s family and queens for the bride’s!

5. Red Roses and white roses…’nuff said!

Looking for merchandise? Check out some of the products listed below!

1. Party City is having a major clearance on tea party themed items as of now (March 2013). There is also a coupon code for either free shipping on orders over $65 (PCXXEP) or $10 off a $65 purchase (PCG2RS). Now here is a tip…if you drive to a Party City, you can use their computer in store for an online order, use the $10 off coupon code AND get free shipping. Shipping is always free if you place the order in store, no minimum. This is great because you don’t have to worry about things being in stock at your local store! Worth the trip!

Some of the items in the clearance section say “birthday” on them. Watch out! The ones I am posting are birthday free. You can pick and choose elements. You don’t want to overkill with color even if it is a MAD party!


These tea cup candles can be used as favors and are on clearance for only $3 for 4, regularly $5.99 for 4.

These are seven inch fold-out centerpieces for $3, down from the original price of $5.99. If you can’t find used tea pots at a garage sale or thrift shop, these could be colorful alternatives or good for the food and drink tables or guest sign in area.



These 20 count cello bags can be used to wrap the favors with an inexpensive tea bag serving as the tag for either seating or for favors! These are on sale from $3.99 to $2.00.



This favor is only $1.69 before the coupon…and it is really cute! It’s not on clearance but the price isn’t too bad especially if you use the coupon and order in store.

These are tean invitations that are not on clearance but are $8.99 for 8, which isn’t too bad for a super cute shaped invitation!

These invitations are on clearance! These are only $4 for 8! Nice!!!!

2. The following items can be found on Amazon. Amazon has free shipping on orders over $25 for eligible items. If you have a prime membership, you get free 2 day shipping on eligible items.

My favorite is the set of “drink me” straws! Check out the chocolate molds (a little pricey) and the lollipops. I also LOVE LOVE LOVE the Alice in Wonderland MP3 for only 99 cents! It includes the Unbirthday Song and all the songs from just the Mad Tea Party in the Disney version! How fun would it be to use this for games or when opening presents! Check out the links below!


Zulily Bridal Shower Gifts Sale!

Have a bridal shower coming up…OF COURSE! Spring is coming so I am sure you have at least one! =) I have three and more to come! You may want to browse the registry and then check out the sale here at Zulily!

Many common bridal shower items are on sale for up to 40% -60% off (including Cuisinart) with a one time all day shipping fee of $6.95.

You can shop all day with no additional shipping charges and that’s great because there MANY bridal sales happening today for Valentines Day!

There are even items for under $10! There is even a coupon code, RETMEZU426, for $5 off of a $75 purchase. Sign up here for free to be a Zulily member!


Check out some of the deals here under the home category!


Skillet set, normally $60, now only $16.99!




Cuisinart Blender and Food Processor (a must have!) only $69.99, normally $145.00!



Cuisinart pan set, $189.00 normally $570.00!!!



Tie-Dye Birthday Party Ideas

The ideas here can be used for a birthday party or for a fun shower (depending on the bride to be…I have one cousin this would be perfect for ..ahem Britt!).


First thing is first. As I always say, the key to saving is planning ahead! Check your flyers for when tie-dye kits go on sale. Otherwise, stock up early using your 40% and 50% off craft store coupons. Check for special clearances around June on tie-dye. I was able to score small kits for only $2 that had all types of special tools such as lace templates and more. These were a big hit!


You will need about one kit for every four to five tie-dyers! Splurge for the bottle kits. They save you a ton of time and are worth every penny. There is no boiling or extra work and clean up is a breeze! Also you can get rubber bands and dropcloths for only a $1 at most dollar stores.

Michaels and A.C. Moore typically have t-shirts on sale for $2.50 at least once a month. You can sometimes get them for $1.99 about every three months. Stock up when you see this price! Hanes shirts typically run about $8 for three so you are better off purchasing from the craft store sales. If this is still to pricey, opt for things such as stretchy headbands, socks or bandanas for more affordable options.

For a bridal shower, you can have people dye pajama caminsoles, socks,  underwear and boy shorts! You can also have them dye table cloths, cloth napkins, sheets and other fun items. Perhaps even the bride’s something blue!


Invitations: These are fun! Use a children’s spin art machine to “tie-dye” a square of white paper or cardstock. out a small t-shirt from a square of cardstock or paper. Create hearts in Microsoft Word to fill out with all the party information. Cut these out and attach them to your mini t-shirts with minimized clip art clothespins or the real miniature clothespins from a craft store (printable is cheaper!).  See the images below!




Spin-Art Invitation


Favors: I gave out colored hair extensions ($1 for a pack of 6 at Michaels) so guests could tie-dye their hair. Check out my daughter modeling one!



* We played pin the “pin” on the tie-dye shirt. I clothespinned a tie-dye shirt to posterboard and put stick backs on seventies inspired pins ($1 for 8 at Michaels). Closest to the center wins!

* I also had a t-shirt coloring page printed out. My daughter created a t-shirt design with eight elements on it. She showed it to the guests for thirty seconds. They then had to try and recreate her shirt on their blank t-shirt printable. The guest who had most of the elements included and matched won the game!

You can use this printable here from the Family Education web site.


Cake: We cut out a t-shirt from posterboard. We then attached mini-cupcakes to the board using glue dots. We iced the cupcakes in white icing and swirled in food dye. We arranged them on the cardboard so that it appeared to be a tie-dyed shirt!


I have also seen this idea for tie-dye cupcakes from Betty Crocker.


Bridal Shower Games!

I have planned my share of bridal showers and sometimes you begin to run out of ideas. Some of the most common games are bridal gift bingo, match the celebrity couples to eachother and a purse hunt game (where guests get points for certain items they can find in their purse at the shower…that’s a fun one!). However, there are more games out there! I decided to create some games to update the bridal shower scene. These games are inexpensive and fun! They require guests to interact which makes for a great time! Remember, if you are an Optimum Rewards Member you receive HUGELY discounted color and black and white photo copies with free two day shipping. This cuts down on the cost big time if you go through their program for all of your priting needs! Enjoy the games!


Game #1 Wedding Dress Time Machine!

I created a shower game where I superimposed my stepsister's face onto a celebrity bride from each decade. Guests had to match the dress to the decade (1940's-2010) and then guess the celebrity bride and groom. They received a point for each correct answer. I printed them in black and white to make it harder! This game was a hit and cost under $3.00! Facebook made it a snap to get the pictures!

I created a shower game where I superimposed my stepsister’s face onto a celebrity bride from each decade. Guests had to match the dress to the decade (1940’s-2010) and then guess the celebrity bride and groom. They received a point for each correct answer. I printed them in black and white to make it harder! This game was a hit and cost under $3.00! Facebook made it a snap to get the pictures!



Here are the brides I used from each decade…if you want to make your own! I do not own the rights to these pictures! I am posting pictures that include the grooms because you can also incorporate the groom into the game for even more fun. I didn’t have enough pictures of the groom to be successful doing this but it would have been a lot of fun to include him in all of the shots!



Jane Wynham and Ronald Reagan- 1940’s

Audrey Hepburn and Mel Ferrer- 1950’s



Priscills Presley to Elvis Presley- 1960’s




Farrah Fawcett to Lee Majors- 1970’s




Princess Diana to Prince Charles- 1980’s


“Posh Spice” AKA Victoria Beckham to David Beckham- 1990’s



Gwen Stefani to Gavin Rossdale- 2000
I included the picture of Gwen with her dad as well because it is a better shot. You can use either and just replace dad with the groom to be!




Kate Middleton to Prince William- 2010



This is the sheet I gave out to the guests! Created by Kelly Maver, September 2012

This is the sheet I gave out to the guests! Created by Kelly Maver, September 2012



Game #2: Guess My Couple

We gave out cards that had different fictional and real celebrity couples on them. Guests had to give two clues about their couple for the people at the table to guess. This made guests interact with eachother! We tried to include a mix of couples from different eras to accomodate the different ages and backgrounds of our guests! Even the junior bridesmaids and flower girl could play along!


Guests used this sheet to record their answers.

Guests used this sheet to record their answers.




Game #3: Name That Tune


This was the guest sheet.

This was the guest sheet.

I downloaded some of the top requested songs at a wedding reception (There are over a 100 so you can choose songs that will stump or suit your audience for a variety of ages and tastes. It also helps to see what you have in your Itunes already so you don’t have to buy any!). I then played a playlist where I gave quick snippets of each song. Guests had to record the artist and song title. They received a point for each! This had our guests even up and dancing at times and there was a lot of singing along!


The songs I used were:

1. Party Rock by LMFAO

2. The Way You Look Tonight by Frank Sinatra

3. Cupid Shuffle by Cupid

4. Cha Cha Slide by DJ Caspar or Mr. C

5. Sweet Caroline by Neil Diamond

6. God Bless the Broken Road by Rascall Flats

7. Shout by the Isley Brothers

8. It’s Your Love by Tim McGraw and Faith Hill

9. Dancing Queen by ABBA

10. Let’s Get is Started by the Black Eyed Peas

I also threw in some tie breakers. Living on a Prayer by Bon Jovi and Don’t Stop Believing by Journey are top requests but were way to obvious for my audience!



Game #4: Who knows the groom better…the bride to be or his mom?


In this game, we interviewed the groom to be and asked him ten questions. We then put our bride to be and the groom’s mom head to head to see who knew him best. They each received a whiteboard and dry erase marker to record their answers at the same time. Meanwhile the guests predicted who would get the answer right , mom or the bride to be? Guests received a point for each correct guess. Every time the bride was wrong…we made her chew a piece of gum!


Some of the questions we used were:

1. If your groom had a baby girl…what would he name her?

2. What is his favorite car?

3. Where did you have your first date?

4. What was his favorite date?

5. What was his dream job as a kid?

6. Where would he love to go on vacation?

7 . What was he attached to as a kid?

8. What is his favorite feature on himself?

9. What is his favorite feature on the bride?

10. What would love to do on a day off from work?


Bride vs. Mom!

Bride vs. Mom!



This is the sheet we used. The bride and groom had been together for over ten years!