Making your own party cut-outs is easy and a great way to add that personal touch to your party!  To get started, you will need: -Paper Punch-Out of your choice (circles, scalloped edge, etc.)  Click here to view.

-Lollipop Sticks (4" for cupcakes, 6" for cake toppers)

-Tacky Glue

-Experience in Photoshop (if you don't have experience, find a friend that can do it for you!)

Okay, time to get crafting.  First things first: you gotta have a design.  For my girls' 1st birthday party, I decided to go with a pink and yellow theme.  I would encourage you to look on the Internet and in magazines to find some great ideas.  As mentioned here, I got a lot of inspiration from TomKat studio.  A lot of children's parties are themed.  I think that is so cute; especially if you associate a certain animal, etc. with your child.  With the twins, I went more with a general color scheme instead of a theme.  It was just my preference for their first party.  Also, think about location.  We decided to have a "party in the park" so I started to play off of ideas that would be good for an outside party.  For instance, we chose to have the food picnic style in these cute pink and yellow bags from Wal-Mart.  To give the bags more of a personal touch, we added a sticker to the center of the bag.

So, once you have a theme and a design, it is time to coordinate.  I love for everything to tie together in a way that looks effortless but it really took a lot of planning.  For starters, I had my wonderfully talented husband create our birthday party invitations.  He is a pro at Photoshop.  There are a ton of cute invitations at different party stores, but sometimes when I have a vision in my head I have a hard time finding exactly what I want.  So, I make it.  Also, making  your own invitations can save you money.  All we had to do was send it to the printer and put stamps on them.  I created all of the text, and it just took him one night to put it together.

After we created our invitation, we got busy on making our stickers.  Using the same colors and fonts as our invitation, Raleigh created 2" round circles in Photoshop and we had them printed on Avery 5294 stickers.  Again, all we had to pay for was the printing.  We decided to do four different stickers, as shown below.

Now that our stickers are printed, it was time to dress them up.  For my cupcakes, I made these cute little cake toppers:

First, I used my paper punch-out to make my border.  I chose a scalloped circle for my border so it would look like a flower.  All I had to do was place it around the sticker and punch.

After that, I simply added the lollipop stick with some Tacky Glue.

For my cake toppers, I had Raleigh make a larger version of the A & M stickers but instead of printing it on sticker I had it printed on cardstock.  We did 4" circles for these so they would stand out a little more.  Then, I used 6" lollipop sticks to attach the circle.  For a personal touch, I tied some pink and yellow ribbon to the stick just so it would look extra special.

Finally, I added the "sweet one" stickers to the candy bags for our guests' party favors.  How perfect of a saying?!

Hope you enjoyed this little lesson on making your party extra special!

Till next time, let your light shine!

Blessings, christen