There are lots of different ways to interpret princess party ideas for a kid's birthday or tea party, from traditional Disney characters such as Cinderella, Princess Jasmine from Aladdin, or Princess Tiana from The Princess and the Frog to more comical ones such as Princess Fiona from Shrek. Not to mention probably the most popular, Anna and Elsa from Frozen. Regardless of which type of princess is your child's favorite, there are lots of imagery that is common to all princesses.
So, below are lots of universal princess party ideas, which you can always tailor to a particular Disney character if you wish. Personally, I always think it's better to create your own individual princess party theme rather than rely too heavily on Disney-branded merchandise—a few little touches are fine, but you don't want your birthday / tea party to look like an advertisement for a film.
quick links: princess Party Supplies
princess party Invitations
Tiara / Wand Invitations
You can pick up plastic tiara's and wands really cheaply nowadays—for around $1 each from supplier 2—so I would suggest sending these out as a 3D invitation. It's certain to get people excited about your princess party ideas. Plus the guests can wear the tiaras to your tea party.
Tie this cute princess dress printable invitation (below right, from supplier 4) onto the tiara / wand to communicate all the party details. I think when you're sending out a 3D invitation, you can get away with using a printable invitation because the main focus is on the 3D object anyway.
If you want to make these even more special, lay them on some pink tissue paper in one of these decorative box mailers and tie up with ribbon. You can always hand these out on the school run to save posting.
Update: Alternatively, you can now buy something similar; an invitation that comes with a princess wand (below, from supplier 4).
If you don't fancy sending out 3D invitations, there are lots of great pre-designed invitations available—including ones that can be personalized either with or without a photo—that will tie in nicely with these princess party ideas.
Below are some drinks ideas to go with these princess party ideas:
Tea parties are synonymous with princess party ideas, so you might want to serve the drinks in some old fashioned tea cups with saucers. You probably don't want to serve normal tea, but there are some nice fruit flavoured ice teas like those from Snapple which make flavors such as peach, raspberry and lemon tea. Just remember these still contain caffeine, although they do make a caffeine-free Pomegranate Raspberry Red Tea which is probably the best option.
Even if you don't serve fruit tea, present your drinks in teacups. These clear glass teacup and saucer sets from supplier 3 work out around $2 per cup and would look great when filled with pink colored drinks.
For younger kids there are these plastic tea cup sippers from supplier 1. You can always take the screw top and big bendy straw off and replace with a regular straw to make them look more delicate if you wish.
Alternatively, you can pick up these cute princess themed mason jars from supplier 4 (other designs available).
Alternatively, make all your drinks pink by serving things like pink lemonade. This looks great in a big serving jug or punchbowl with just some simple lemon or lime slices as garnish (see photo below left by Quentin Bacon on My Recipes).
You can still let them drink this out of tea cups with saucers so they feel more like a princess. Alternatively, use these princess goblets (below right, from supplier 3) to tie in nicely with these princess party ideas.
These would look great served in these Disney princess themed party cups, which are only around $1 each from supplier 4. There are different designs available for various princesses, such as Cinderella, Belle, Snow White, and Anna and Elsa from Frozen.
Give regular water bottles a princess makeover with these printable labels from supplier 4. There's lots of different designs available, including these cute 'Melted Snow' Frozen themed labels.
You can make your party drinks more interesting with these cute princess wand or princess castle ice cube molds, both from supplier 3.
Alternatively, use princess themed straws, such as the ones below (more designs available) from supplier 4.
princess party Food
Check out some of these great recipes I found to give you some inspiration for your princess party ideas:
For princess party food you could look to the English tradition of 'Afternoon Tea' for inspiration. Little princesses will love this as everything is so delicate and lady-like. Traditionally, afternoon tea comes served in teapots with tea cups and saucers alongside bite-sized sandwiches cut into small triangles with the crusts removed. Traditional English fillings are cucumber (but you could add cream cheese for children), egg and cress (substitute with egg mayo for kids), ham, or smoked salmon.
All the sandwiches are usually presented on a tired cake stand (see Food Presentation section below for princess themed cardboard cake stands) accompanied by a selection of small cakes or scones with jam and Devonshire (clotted) cream. See video below, from Joy of Baking for how to make the scones.
Over the past few years, traditional English Afternoon Tea has become really fashionable again. The Berkeley Hotel in London has gone one step further and created Prêt-à-Portea, which is a modern afternoon tea with cakes and biscuits inspired by dresses, handbags and shoes from the current season's catwalk collections (below). It's then all served on china designed by British designer Paul Smith. So you don't just have to think in terms of traditional afternoon tea for your princess party ideas - mix it up with some cute shoe or dress shaped cookies, cakes and candies.
If you want to make the sandwiches a little less formal, use cookie cutters to shape them into crowns, castles, princess dresses, and glass slippers to turn them into princess party food (see example, below left from Betty Crocker). See supplier 3 for princess cookie cutters.
Of course you can also use the cookie cutters to create any number of different princess themed cookies. There are cookie cutters for individual princess faces, such as this Elsa from Frozen cutter, or if you're not really a baker you can buy all sorts of ready-made princess cookies. See supplier 4 for both.
Similarly, you can play around with using this pumpkin carriage cookie cutter, or just buy these ready-made carriage cookies. Both available from supplier 4.
Remember, in addition to using these cutters for sandwhiches and cookies, you can also use them on slices of cheese, or fruits, such as watermelon. You can even take a similar approach to shaping mini pizzas, such as these crown-shaped pizzas from by Pillsbury.
These 'Rapunzel's Braids' by Susie of What Do I Know of Holy? are really creative. They're just puff pastry with jelly brushed on them, which are then braided and baked.
For something a little more healthy, make these simple fruity magic wands, below left by Sheri Silver on Babble. Or check out these more elaborate ones from Weelicious.
For another healthy option, check out these ingenious 'Cinderella's Pumpkins' by Rebecca from Daily Rebecca. She uses little bits of celery stuffed into tangerines. So clever!
Pink cotton candy or strawberries dipped in white chocolate with pink sprinkles are also perfect princess party ideas.
Or for something a little more unusual check out this amazing step by step guide for how to make Cupcake Stuffed Stawberries! (Yes, you did read that correctly. Below left by Jasmin at 1 Fine Cookie) or this variation of Cheesecake Stuffed Strawberries (below right, by Melissa at Sugar Derby).
You might also want to let the kids get involved in making some of the princess party food for their birthday, so let them try their hand at these cute Edible Teacup Biscuits (below right, from Planning with Kids) or these Fairy Princess Wands (below right from My Recipes).
I had to include this recipe for Pink-Lemonade Cookie Pops (below left, by Cathy Cook from Red Book) because they just look so cute—perfect princess party food. Alternatively, try these beautiful looking Chocolate-Strawberry Cupcakes (below right, by Josie from Pink Parsley) made with a strawberry swiss-meringue buttercream.
Use these cute tea cup molds from supplier 3 to bake and serve your cupcakes in - perfect for a royal tea party.
Alternatively, you could make these really cute Rapunzel Tower Cupcakes (below, by Robin at Bird on a Cake). The cake is baked inside the ice cream cups.
If you're not really a baker, you can buy these really cute Disney princess cake pops from supplier 4.
If you prefer to make regular cupcakes, use these cake toppers from supplier 4, which are available for most of the Disney princesses and just frost your cakes with the appropriate colored frosting.
Alternatively, you can buy these edible fondant cupcake toppers which look amazing. Also from supplier 4.
If you prefer not to go down the Disney princess route, there are plenty of other princess cupcake toppers available from supplier 4, such as the ones below.
I particularly like these fun personalized photo cupcake toppers, also from supplier 4, which are made from a photo of the birthday girl.
There are lots of princess themed lollipops available from supplier 4, such as wands, glass slippers, and carriages, which are a good way to fill out a dessert table.
Supplier 1 also sells candy by the color so you can use pink, white, and lavender for a princess party theme.
For a Disney princess party, you might want to include these fun Pez dispensers on the dessert table. See supplier 3.
One final pink-themed recipe to add to the princess party ideas is this cute Pink Popcorn (below, by Erin at Erin Cooks).
No princess party food would be complete without some reference to a frog (that might just turn into a prince). There are lots of great recipes around for Frog Cupcakes of varying complexity, but this one (below left, by Bright Ideas) is a very simple. Alternatively you could make Frog in a Pond (below right, by Dixie Elliott from Taste) which is just a chocolate frog in a simple green Jell-O. Don't forget to serve them on lily pads cut out of green card.
Another cute dessert is this Sherbet the Frog recipe from Disney Family (see video below).
See the video below for step by step instructions for how to make fruit bouquets.
Alternatively, try these simplified Fruit Flower Pops (below, by Lindsay Ann at Dollhouse Bake Shoppe).
If you want to make the birthday cake yourself, there are a few different baking pans available which tie in nicely with these princess party ideas, including crowns, carriages, and castles. See supplier 3 for these.
Alternatively, you could try one of these 3D cake kits to make either a princess dress cake or this amazing castle cake set. Both from supplier 3.
If you're not really a baker, these personalized edible cake images from supplier 3 are a really quick and easy way to theme the birthday cake in keeping with these princess party ideas. Just roll out onto your cake. (More designs available).
Alternatively, there are plenty of edible fondant cake toppers from supplier 4 that you could add to your own cake.
Below are some suggestions for how to style and decorate your party in keeping with these princess party ideas:
tissue paper garland backdrop
To create a dessert / buffet table like the one below, folllow these step by step instructions:
Hanging tissue paper garlands (from supplier 2 or 3) vertically is a great way to create a delicate backdrop for a princess themed dessert table (see pictures below from Martha Stewart Weddings for inspiration).
When using tissue garlands for a backdrop they look best when there are lots of them, so have some overlapping or curled up towards the sides. Use several different types of garland to give the arrangement plenty of texture. In the illustration above I've used a mixture of arcade garlands (below top), leaf garlands (below middle) and paper tissue garlands (below bottom) in a mixture of lavender, white and classic pink. See supplier 2 or 3 to buy these. To avoid a candy stripe appearance, be sure to use a mixture of 3 different colors, rather than just 2.
To dress your table, I'd suggest using a lavender tablecover with a matching table skirt (below left). Then pick up some lavender tulle by the yard and lay this over the table skirt to create some texture. Then add some pink feather boa trim (below right) - also available by the yard - around the perimeter of the tabletop. Obviously you could also reverse these colors if you prefer pink to be your main color. See supplier 2 for all these items.
You could also arrange some white string lights (the type used to dress a christmas tree) in between the table skirt and the tulle to add some sparkle.
Then hang a personalized princess pennant banner from supplier 4 accross the front of the table (more designs available).
Use a mix of square and rectangular pink and white plates and bowls to display the food on. I recommend this range of disposable Premium Plastic Serveware (below), they're great value and are really handy if you don't have enough serving platters and trays to match the colors of your princess party ideas.
These life size Disney Princess stand ups (from suppliers 1 or 2, other Disney Princess characters available) are a great way to help decorate the dessert table. I've used 2 in the illustration above, but you could get away with just using one. The great thing about these is that you can use them as a photo op too, so the kids can have their picture taken with their favorite princess.
This princess centerpiece from supplier 9 is really cute and doubles as a treat stand. This would look best raised up to give your display some height, so you could just cover a cardboard box with gift wrap and place it on top.
If your birthday party falls during pumpkin season make a homemade centerpiece by carving this beautiful Disney style Pumpkin Carriage (below, from Hallmark Magazine).
Complete the scene by hanging a personalized princess themed banner above the dessert table, such as the ones below. There are lots of different designs available, including ones where you can upload of photo of your child. For the first banner shown below see supplier 2 and for all the others see supplier 1.
crepe paper streamer backdrop
If you're on a tight budget you can create a variation of the dessert table above by substituting the tissue paper garlands for crepe paper streamers from supplier 1 or 2. Just twist and hang a mixture of lavender, white and pink streamers in tight vertical lines from floor to ceiling (see below left from aestheticoutburst. blogspot.com and below right from mandjsherry.blogspot.com for inspiration).
Below is an example of how this might look.
As an alternative to the princess cut outs, you could use these huge princess airwalker balloons from supplier 1.
Another option for a dessert table backdrop to go with these princess party ideas is to hang a cluster of pink and white pom pom decorations or paper lanterns both from supplier 2.
The lanterns / pom poms above work best if you have a plain wall behind. If not, just hang some decorating fabric such as a gossamer or netting (from supplier 2) on the wall first.
Scene Setter backdrop
Another idea is to use scene setters to decorate (see below).
This dessert table is made from combining a couple of different scene setters. The great thing about it is that the pieces are so big (the background images are 30ft long and the prince and princess approx 5ft tall) that you'll be able to cover huge sections of a room with it (not just behind the dessert table) so you may not need many other decorations to go with these princess party ideas.
The background is made up of the following pieces (from left to right): meadow background scene setter, sky background scene setter, and fluffy cloud props (all from supplier 2) combined with animal and nature props from supplier 3.
Then you can add these add ons (all from supplier 2), from left to right: princess and Carriage prop, castle prop, and prince and his trusty steed props.
If you're using the above scene setters, bear in mind that all the decorations sit flat against the wall. Therefore, I'd recommend using something three dimensional as the centerpiece so that all the decorations don't sit on the same plane.
This princess carriage standee from supplier 2 is 4'6" tall so could be raised up at the back of the dessert table to create an impressive backdrop, perhaps with a curtain of crepe paper streamers behind.
Similarly, this freestanding princess photobooth background, also from supplier 2, is 7'6" tall and 3'10" wide so could easily be used as a backdrop—plus it can be personalized.
There are also some impressive princess themed photographic backdrops from supplier 4, such as this Cinderella one. You can probably just pin these backdrops in place, but it might also be worth investing in a cheap photography backdrop support frame (from supplier 3) which you can pick up for around $30.
The great thing about these support frames is that you can use them again and again to create different backgrounds for dessert tables by hanging fabric,tissue pom poms, or streamers (as shown below using a backdrop support frame).
If you want to create your own fairytale castle backdrop, there are a number of different stone effect background papers which come on a roll like wallpaper and are great for covering large areas. See supplier 2.
These castle backgrounds, also from supplier 2, are around $32 and can come either as a freestanding cardboard backdrop or as vinyl murals. Again, they're a great way to theme larger areas.
Another way to create a dessert table backdrop is to attach wall decals to the wall behind the dessert table. Some of these can be personalized with the birthday girl's name and many are reusable so can be reapplied to a bedroom wall after the party. See supplier 3 for a full range.
Finally, another way to dress your dessert table would be to hang a princess canopy like this above it. Alternatively, hang it over the dinner table where the kid's will be eating to enclose the table and create a floaty tented effect. See supplier 3 or 8.
Below are some food styling and presentation tips to go with these princess party ideas.
Use these miniature glass slippers as serving dishes and fill with candy on your dessert table. See supplier 1 or 2.
Similarly, you can also use these princess carriage treat boxes (from supplier 9) or these princess treasure chests (from supplier 2) to present snacks and candy on your dessert table.
If you're going for a fairytale castle theme, you could also use these castle themed treat boxes to serve pink popcorn in (below left, from supplier 1 or 2) or these princess castle themed ones (below right, from supplier 4).
If you want to go for traditional princess party ideas, dress the table using a palate of pink and white—with a third accent color such as gold, silver, or lavender. For example, you could use a white table cover with a glittery pink sequin table runner (as shown below from supplier 3) and a mix of pink and gold tableware (see supplier 1 or 2).
Alternatively, you might use a pale pink tablecover with a gold or silver glittery runner (from supplier 3).
Other color combinations that work well are pink, white, and lavender. Remember to always use three colors to avoid a candystripe effect.
If you're using the sparkly gold or silver as your accent color, you might also want to consider using these gold/silver glitter boarder paper placemats as a charger plate with a solid color plate (white, gold, pink etc) on top. There are also gold/silver sparkly plastic cutlery sets available (below right, from supplier 2).
Just remember, when using glittery / sparkly elements, use them sparingly - they should be an accent. Otherwise it all starts to look a bit tacky. You can get away with a sparkly boarder placemat and cutlery with a sparkly table runner if the runner sits on top of a solid color tablecover. That way, the placemats sit on the solid color and tie together with the runner. However, if your glittery tablerunner covers the entire tabletop (as in the pink photo above), then only use solid color tableware—otherwise it will be too much sparkle.
If your child loves Disney princesses, don't shy away from using branded tableware. Remember, you want the party to be fun for them. It's not a table-styling competition. Just use it sparingly. See supplier 1 for a full range.
Alternatively, there are some less commercial princess tableware sets available, such as these from supplier 2, which can also be personalized.
There are also some less obvious designs from supplier 7—including some featuring ethnic princesses—many of which can also be personalized.
There are lots of cute floral-based centerpieces, such as the ones below, from supplier 4 that would work well with these princess party ideas.
If you're going down the Disney princess route, there are lots of cut-out and doll style centerpeices available, such as the one below left. Or for something less commercial, you can get simple personalized cut-out style centerpieces (below right) which you can display popping out of a vase filled with pink candy or flowers. See supplier 4 for both.
Alternatively, these princess themed letters are a cute way to make a personalized centerpiece. Also from supplier 4.
If you have a gazebo / pop-up canopy at home I would always suggest you set up the dining table under this. Having a roof overhead helps define the space and you can focus the party decorations around it. Hang swags of decorating fabric such as gossamer or netting around the outside of the canopy to enclose the space and give it a more decorative feel—or hang some transparent bead curtains to give it a bejewelled look. Crystal beaded strands can add a really magical touch. When I produced Elton John's very first White Tie and Tiara Ball I worked with Swarovski to dress one of his gardens, turning it into a enchanted forest, using strands of their 'Crystal Rain' hanging from the trees. You can do something similar by hanging strands of crystal beads down from your canopy in clusters at varying heights.
It's always a good idea to have some decoration overhead too—to fill the empty space above the table. Some simple paper lanterns or tissue pom-poms work well (see supplier 2). Always hang these in a cluster at varying heights.
If you don't have a canopy or you're holding your party indoors you can still create a similar effect by swagging strips of decorating fabric (such as gossamer, from supplier 2) down from a light fitting and out to the side walls of the room to help lower the ceiling.
Alternatively, you can create thinner swags by using strips of crepe paper (I would suggest using three different alternating colours because using only two colours can make it look a bit candy-striped).
If you want to give your party a really professional look, pick up some disposable chair covers to give all the chairs a uniform look. Often, if you're using mis-matched chairs or the color doesn't fit with the theme of your party it can really detract from the overall aesthetic. The reason the table styling always looks better at professional events or weddings is because the chair covers match the tablecloth. If your budget allows, use these stretch fabric chair covers from supplier 2 which are approx $7 each in black or white. Then tie a sash to the back of each chair in whatever your chosen accent color is.
Alternatively, these pink tutu chair skirts from supplier 4 would look really cute tied to the back of each chair. Plus they double as a party favor so you can send guests home with one.
You could even position this child size 'medievel kingdom throne' from supplier 2 at the head of the table to make the the birthday girl feel even more special.
Finally, tie a helium-filled balloon to the back of each chair so it sits above the child's head. There are lots of different balloons available that fit with these princess party ideas. Use these personalized placemats to set each place at the table. See supplier 1 for both.
To identify who sits where, pick up some cheap plastic fairy princess wands or glass slippers from supplier 2 and attach small tags with each child's name on it and lay one on each place setting. Alternatively, use these carriage treat boxes from supplier 9 and fill with some pink candy.
If you're using these princess party ideas for a 1st birthday, use this cute highchair cover from supplier 1 to decorate your child's highchair to make it a bit more special.
Finish the table styling by putting one of these cute princess hats (from supplier 9 or 3) at each place.
Fortunately there are lots of great decorations available to go with these princess party ideas—especially if you're having a Disney themed princess tea party. Below are my recommendations.
Always start your party decorations outside so there's a bit of a build up to the entrance. There's nothing worse for your guests than arriving at a bare front door.
This could just be bunches of balloons starting along the pavement and leading guests up your drive to the front door, a personalized yard sign (below left, from supplier 2 or below right, from supplier 4) or personalized banner.
This inexpensive pink aisle runner from supplier 3, 5 or 6 is a great way to create a special entrance for your princess party, and can be combined with this princess crown door topper curtain (below center, from supplier 2). Alternatively, if you're going for a fairytale castle theme, there's also a stone path runner available, also from supplier 2.
If you have a bigger budget, there are some great castle gateway props available from supplier 2, both princess and fairytale castle themed ones.
Another option is to print a life-size cut out (below left, from supplier 2) of your child dressed in a princess costume to position at the end of then drive or at your front door. These are surprisingly cheap at around $20. Plus you can add a motion-activated voice recorder (also from supplier 2) for around $10 extra which enables your child to pre-record a short welcome message which starts to play as people walk past the cut out.
Twinkly white fairy lights are also great for these princess party ideas (hang them behind some sheer fabric to soften the look), or pick up a cheap bubble or smoke machine to really give a magical fairytale feel to your birthday party. All these are available from supplier 3.
Check out supplier 4 for lots of cute princess party favor ideas, such as this favor box with a tiara, wand, bubbles and soap (also available in a blue Frozen style) or these cute Frozen snowflake soaps.
Alternatively, supplier 4 also has lots of great princess favor bags, such as the ones below, which you can fill with your own candy and novelties.
Encourage guests to come to the birthday tea party dressed up—but hand out cheap pink feather boas, tiaras and wands when they arrive just incase not everyone makes the effort.
There are also some funny princess pet costumes available, so you can dress up the dog too.
Don't forget to follow up after the party with a thank you note. Supplier 4 has the best range in keeping with these princess party ideas, some of which can even be personalized with a photo of the birthday girl.
Were these princess party ideas useful for your birthday / tea party? If so, please help me in promoting my website. Share this page with friends by clicking on the Facebook or Twitter buttons below.
Or use the "Enjoy this page?" link below to paste the link address for these princess party ideas into your own website, blog or forum.
Matt James is a professional event planner and owner of event agency Left Field Productions, which has produced events for Elton John, Sarah Jessica Parker, Kevin Spacey, Stella McCartney, David LaChapelle, John Waters, and Elvis Costello & Diana Krall. Since 2004, Left Field Productions has won 30 industry awards for excellence including Production Company of the Year.