Monday, October 11, 2010

UbaFest! A 16th Birthday party, plus a mini-tutorial

Last night's UbaFest was a success!

What is UbaFest, you ask?  Only my dear Monkey 1's sixteenth birthday party. . . the campfire edition!  Which means:  a relatively inexpensive, simple, mostly handmade shindig, with the main focus on family and just being together.  We feasted on tender smoked brisket (slowly cooked by my mother-in-law) and homemade potato salad, s'mores and red velvet cake balls.  Plus {unfortunately} lots of junk food.  We played lots of silly games, and chatted and laughed 'til we cried.  Simple, but so much fun.

Since this was a campfire theme, there was an option for camping (in the back yard) for those who were brave enough or just didn't care to get a good night's sleep. . . .

(The tents were filled to capacity -- many thanks to all the good sports!)  :)

Now, for the crafty stuff. . . . 

Monkey 1 and her sisters made the "UbaFest" bunting, as well as the tissue paper poms!  I love that we can use the buntings year after year (totally inspired by Erin's post,) and after the party, the girls claimed the poms to decorate their rooms.

This next project was a late-night, last-minute idea, and I totally love how it turned out.   I used:
  • cheapo $1.50/yard polyester fabric (abandoned from a previous failed craft project)
  • cotton twill tape (thrift store score: 25 cents for 10 yards) 
  • acrylic felt scraps
  • sewing machine + thread

And I came up with poppy garlands!

The largest poppies are about 5" in diameter.  I stitched the largest (bottom)  petal to cotton twill tape from edge to edge (stopping about 1/4" from the singed edge).  This kept the flower from flopping downward or sagging.  I then tacked the next layers of petals to that large petal base with a few zigzag stitches in the center.  And to finish with the black centers, I stitched a big X across the diameter of the black felt circles.  I made this batch of garlands in ~3-foot strands, to hang vertically, but it would be so easy to link them to each other to drape and hang horizontally, too.  And that's it!  Super-easy, right? 

I just love how these all seemed to glow! 

Also glowing. . .

and particularly my beautiful not-so-baby girl.  :)



  1. Happy birthday...what a wonderful alternative to those sweet 16 parties you hear about. It will be so memorable to her since she knows how much you care and love her.

  2. Wow. You know, my Sam is almost 15. It's crazy!! Where does the time go? Seems *I* was just 15!! This looks like so much fun. Sam's birthday is in Jan.(too wet and snowy) But the littles birthdays are in the early spring. A bonfire and camp-out would be just the thing for their party...thanks for sharing your day!


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