We celebrated his big "1" with a jungle-themed party since he enjoyed his Evenflo Triple Fun Jungle Exersaucer so much. The party turned out well, so I wanted to share some of the design elements and inspiration here for you in case you ever want to throw a jungle-themed party.
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I am fortunate to have a very talented friend who creates and sells custom stationery. Just like with Grayson's birth announcements, I wanted something unique and customized based on the party's inspiration, so I contacted The Cheshire Kat Designs to create a cohesive stationery theme for the event. Here is what we came up with.
Favor Bag Labels:
For me, the easiest way to do a jungle party and save on décor was to do the party outside in a spot with trees and greenery. Luckily I live in Los Angeles, and was fortunate to have a nice 80 degree rain-free day in December to work with. The courtyard of our building was nicely surrounded with shrubbery and palm trees, which made for the perfect setting.
For table centerpieces, I used a combination of mylar palm tree centerpieces found on eBay, as well as bunches of bananas.
Tablecloths, Plates, Cups, Napkins, and Utensils:
I was able to purchase a lot of my basic décor items from the eBay store Sweet Creations Parties. The seller has a huge stock of party basics in a wide variety of themes and colors. They also shipped quickly, are mindful of your party dates, and gave me a nice combined shipping discount. I went with lime green table covers, chocolate brown napkins and cups, and lime green plastic cutlery.
The plates I actually got from a different retailer, because I was set on finding a classier (non-cheesy) animal-print plate. This is what I found:
Inflatable Jungle Animals:
Since this was the first children's party I have ever planned, I had fun choosing the favors. There are SO many choices on things to get for jungle-themed party favors and supplies, and at very competitive prices. Here is what made up each bag:
No longer available, but you can get these ones from Amazon instead
Jungle Animal Plush:
Food and Beverage:
For little snacks and an additional favor, I had a tower of animal cracker boxes on display.
Starters and Sides:
I hit up good ol' Costco for these. For an appetizer, I went with taquitos, and named them "Bamboo Shoots." The side dishes were a pasta salad and a Mexican Caesar Salad that I nicknamed "Amazon Salad." I served them in the palm leaf serving platters pictured above.
I decided to take on the task of actually making and decorating my own jungle animal cupcakes to save money on getting custom-designed cupcakes. While this did save money, it was pretty time-consuming making and decorating these in bulk. I got the design instructions from Betty Crocker, where they even have a helpful video tutorial for them. Then, I trayed them up with some fake grass purchased from a craft store.
As an added details, we decided to wrap our gifts to Grayson in animal print paper. I was able to purchase some in a few different patterns from eBay store Sweet Creations Parties. They looked great as a starter to our gift table (which also had a lime green cover).
A jungle party needs a jungle-themed playlist! Here is the one I put together, downloading all the mp3's from Amazon:
Trashin' The Camp (Phil Collins, from the album Tarzan)
Run Through The Jungle (Creedence Clearwater Revival)
Jungle Party (Funky Monkeys)
Deep in the Jungle (Joe Scruggs)
Rockin' In The Jungle (The Eternals)
Jungle King (Hot Lips Page)
Jungle Boogie (Kool & The Gang)
The Lion Sleeps Tonight (Wimoweh) (The Tokens)
Bungle In The Jungle (Jethro Tull)
Monkey Man (The Rolling Stones)
Jungle Love (Steve Miller)
Concrete Jungle (Bob Marley)
Wild Thing (The Troggs)
Born To Be Wild (Steppenwolf)
Theme From The Monkees (The Monkees)
The Bare Necessities (Bruce Reitherman, from the album The Jungle Book)
I Wan'na Be Like You (The Monkey Song) (Phil Harris, from the album The Jungle Book)
Circle Of Life (Lebo M., from the album The Lion King)
I Just Can't Wait To Be King (Jason Weaver, from the album The Lion King)
Hakuna Matata (Ernie Sabella, from the album The Lion King)
Can You Feel The Love Tonight (Elton John, from the album The Lion King)
George of the Jungle (The TV Theme Players)
Welcome To The Jungle (Guns N' Roses)
Colonel Hathi's March (The Elephant Song) (Disney Studio Chorus, from the album The Jungle Book)
Thanks so much for sharing this with me Gwen, and congratulations to you and your family on your new bundle of joy!!
For anyone else who was inspired by the orange and gray nursery decor with the circular motif, I also recommend these custom baby announcements (which could also make nice baby shower invitations:
These were custom designed and created for me by The Cheshire Kat Designs based on my nursery theme. They can now be purchased here in a number of different color schemes.
As a curly-haired girl, I was already a fan of John Frieda's Frizz Ease products. The serum, of course, as well as the hair mousse, which just seemed to be created to work for curly haired gals to control frizz while still keeping hair manageable and bouncy. So when Mr. Frieda came out with his Sheer Blonde and Brilliant Brunette lines, I had to check it out for myself.
First, I loved that they separated the brunette stuff into two categories (as not all brunette hair is made equal): "Amber to Maple" and "Chesnut to Espresso." Depending on my level or lack of highlights over the years, I have passed between both spectrums, and love the results either way.
The first time I started using the shampoo, conditioner and finishing cream, the results were actually obvious. I was immediately complimented on my hair, as it somehow seemed to bring out the color tones and highlights, and really just brighten up the overall color effect of my hair. As a lady knows, a compliment on her hair can make her day, so you better believe I knew immediately that these products were keepers. Here are the products in the line that I use consistently:
Shine Release Moisturizing Conditioner
Thanks John Frieda for not only thinking about us curly-haired gals, but also making a product that maximizes the effect of brunette hair. You make me feel like brunettes are the ones that have more fun :).
So inspired by Neiman's, here are my designer picks for each Resort trend, along with some more addordable alternatives.
Stripes and Dots
Carolina Herrera One-Shoulder Polka-Dot Dress
$495.00, Neiman Marcus
Dior Neplum Jacket and Striped Skirt
$1,050.00 and $2,800.00, Neiman Marcus
Miu Miu Canvas Polka-Dot Platform Sandal
$495.00, Neiman Marcus
Mod Spotted Dress
$27.80, Forever 21
Striped Long-Sleeve Tee
Michael Kors Boot-Cut Jeans
$495.00, Neiman Marcus
Roberto Cavalli Skinny Jeans
$595.00, Neiman Marcus
Zelda Jean Legging White-Rinse Wash
Jimmy Choo Bali Raffia Hobo
$995.00, Neiman Marcus
Lanvin Flowered Denim Tote
$1,475.00, Neiman Marcus
Fossil Farrah Tote
Franchi Handbags Constance Bow Clutch
D&G Flower-Print Fitted Sheath Dress
$515.00, Neiman Marcus
Aquilano.Rimondi Scarf-Print Turn-Around Skirt
$550.00, Neiman Marcus
Floral Rouched Sleeveless Dress
Cinched Floral Tunic
$19.80, Forever 21
Stella McCartney Contrast-Lapel Tuxedo Jacket, High-Low Shell & Narrow Cuffed Pants
$585.00 - $1,895.00, Neiman Marcus
Yves Saint Laurent Piped Ruffle-Waist Coat
$3750.00, Neiman Marcus
Ruffled-Bottom Belted Trench Coat
$23.80, Forever 21
Sophisticated Lady Jacket
$32.80, Forever 21
Black and White
Oscar de la Renta Embroidered Silk Tunic
$990.00, Neiman Marcus
Rene Caovilla Pearl Thong Sandal
$775.00, Neiman Marcus
Contrast Woven Top
$22.80, Forever 21
Sailor Striped Top
$10.80, Forever 21
Ralph Lauren Collection Firana Leather Espadrille
$350.00, Neiman Marcus
Valentino Bow Slingback Espadrille
$475.00, Neiman Marcus
Michael by Michael Kors Juniper Espadrille
Juicy Couture Giana
Giuseppe Zanotti Pave Irridescent Pump
$1,195.00, Neiman Marcus
Stella McCartney Sequined Pullover
$1,045.00, Neiman Marcus
Sequin and Chiffon Dress
Sequin Lace Long Tank
Chinese Laundry Ladybug Sequins
Michael Kors Double-Faced Dress
$1,695.00, Neiman Marcus
Nest Chunky Stone Necklace
$350.00, Neiman Marcus
Bottega Venetta Woven Hobo Large
$1,980.00, Neiman Marcus
Zac Posen Seamed-Waist Dress
$1,590.00, Neiman Marcus
Chiffon Frill Tunic
$19.80, Forever 21
BCBG Tiered One-Shoulder Dress
$3.80, Forever 21