Party Animal Monkey Party

Friday, 19 March 2010

For Riley's fifth birthday, it was the height of a stinking hot summer in Beijing, so it was indoors all the way. I had become enchanted with Martha Stewart's beautiful monkey party and wanted to do something similar for Riley, whom we call Monkey Boy.


I started with a yellow, brown and green theme which featured swathes of jungle green organza around the room and also draped from the ceiling, at one point secured with a huge tumble of loose yellow balloons (more on that later!).

I also used green twine to string around the room, mimicking jungle vines. I had an enormous space to cover, so this would be far more effective in a smaller room.

Every workable wall surface, I placed a palm tree made from craft paper. You can cut a stalk from brown card and then cut each leaf from green craft paper and assemble, or cut the leaves in one large piece from green card. I also cut out yellow bananas.

On the windows, I added the cut-out yellow bananas, a 'Riley' sign made from brown card and also green palm leaves that looked really affective in the light.


The party table was decked out with paper cups which were transformed into monkey faces using circles of brown paper. I actually constructed these circles, complete with nose-holes and smiling mouth, on my compter, printed them off and cut them out. I also added little ear handles made from card and a curly tail. You can make this tail from plastic ribbon if you like. Just curl it with the flat edge of a knife or scissor.

I covered the table with a large bamboo blind, added props like plants and stuffed monkeys and of course, clutches of bananas.

Really simple monkey party food included banana milkshakes, frozen bananas on sticks - dipped in chocolate, banana cupcakes with choc icing and lolly bananas on top, chocolate brownies with little monkey flags I made on the computer, banana jelly, crisps, pretzels, fruit skewers and chicken strips.

Bright yellow plates, cutlery and napkins completed the look. I also used green bowls and plates where I could, to complement the colour scheme.


I relied on the energy of 25 kids to drive the games for this party. I did have a pin-the-banana-on-the-palm-tree, pass the parcel and the ever-popular donuts on strings.

But I also relied on a collection of ride-on and jump-on toys - perfect for when kids start arriving...

Then it was just lots of loud music, lots of jumping, musical statues and balloon races...

Then the pièce de résistance was when we unhooked the fabric on the ceiling and yellow balloons tumbled down for the kids to go bananas over. We had a game where they had to keep their balloon from touching the floor by batting it, and it was absolutely hilarious. I also think I suffered accute hearing loss after this game.

the cake

I absolutely adored the simplicity of this cake from Martha Stewart. Baked in a shallow pudding bowl, it's so easy to ice, sprinkle some chocolate shavings or sprinkles on top and add ears by cutting a cupcake in half, securing with a toothpick and icing them over. You could use banana flavouring in your yellow frosting.

Happy birthday, Monkey Boy!


Anonymous said...

thx u very much, i learn a lot

Posie Patchwork said...

No one does parties better than you. Look at you there with your fabulous boy, love you lots Tania, ahhhh . . . love Posie

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