crafts, Entertaining, Family

Party Favor: DIY Gem-Covered Pin and Jewelry Box

For Sophia’s Glamtastic birthday party, we decided to make a custom party favor for all of Sophia’s friends. Each girl got a gem-covered pin with her initial and a simple little jewelry box with jewels on top. Sophia and Lily are ready so let’s get to it!

For the jewelry boxes, I bought some basic wooden boxes from Oriental Trading. We thought about painting them but figured it might get messy so we decided to keep it simple and just add some jewels. We had a mega bag of Big Bling from Michael’s so we used those (and had tons left for many more projects.) Sophia did most of them herself by gluing them with glitter glue so if a little gooped out, it still looked great. She did a sort of haphazard grouping of gems on each one and I was very impressed with her attention to detail and her restraint. I wouldn’t have known when to stop but she did. (Of course, Lily served as gem-sorting assistant.)


As for the pins, I was inspired by these from Markus Lupfer. I had seen them months ago on Net-a-Porter and thought they were begging to be DIY’d.

But ultimately, the idea of a black varsity letter–no matter how glam-atized with sequins–was just too sporty for our theme. So I decided to make felt pins with gems instead. I started out by picking a clean sans serif font and printing out XL versions of the letters I needed.


The next step was to trace the shape of each letter onto my hot pink felt. Note: I traced them backwards so if a little pen showed after I cut them out, it would be on the back.


I felt like I was cutting these babies forever! But finally they were done.


Next, I glued them to silver and gold cardstock and cut them out again leaving a little edge of cardstock sticking out. Then I glued gems on with fabric glue.

party-favors- 050

Once the gems were dry, I glued pins on the back with Gorilla glue (because nothing will make that stuff budge!). By the way: it was Sophia’s idea to make some gold and some silver and since she was the creative director of the project, I had to listen to her. Right?


I’m so glad I took the time to make the letter templates. The S on the left was my prototype and the one on the right was made with the template. So. Much. Better.


I love how they all look together.


The pins fit perfectly in the little jewelry boxes. We just added a little tissue paper pillow to each one so they’d all be comfy!

party-favors- 2-153

Of course, once we we got the pins all nestled in their boxes, we realized that we needed some way to know which letter was in each one  so I went back to Picmonkey and made a bunch of little tags that match the invitation.


Then I tied them on to the boxes and the favors were ready to go!


We stacked them up on the foyer table so we wouldn’t forget to give them out as everyone left. I put the invitation in a frame to set the mood! (You know – in case anyone forgot why they were there!)



For more recaps from Soph’s birthday party, check out these posts:

 DIY Party Invitation

How to Throw a Glamtastic Kids’ Party

DIY Photo Booth


Sue at Home

PicMonkey Collage pins collage

crafts, Entertaining, Family, Food, Home

How to Throw a Glamtastic Kids’ Party

Since Sophia was turning 8 going on 18, we knew that a very glam party was going to be the way to go. And doing it at home was a natural solution for a couple reasons. 1) I get to do lots of crafty things that allow me to make it super personal for Sophia and I’m not gonna lie, I actually like all the projects. (Ok…I’ll admit it. I also love the control that doing them gives me!)  2) And it was much, much, much, much, much, much cheaper than having it at a place that throws parties. (I mean, I love my kids but $600-$1000 for an hour and a half of her life? Um…no.)


Sure, it takes a lot of work but it was worth it to see her so happy. Let’s go over the eleven elements you need to throw an at-home glamtastic party of your own.

1. The Invitations – As I mentioned before in this post, I created a custom design on Picmonkey and printed them at home. A couple self-adhesive jewels finished them off.

Sophia's invitation 4 edit


2. The DIY Photo Booth – Taking a picture every 10 seconds kept the girls engaged–and gave them just enough time to make a quick accessory change before the next shot. (A follow-up post is forthcoming with everything you need to know to create your own.)


3. The Favor – Custom and unique all the way! Each girl got a pin with her initial in a special keepsake box. (A post with more details is coming soon!)



4. The Manicure Station – A glamtastic party wouldn’t be complete without a little pampering! I hired a babysitter/friend of ours and some of her friends to man this station. Other than the hired help, this was free! We had everything on hand.



5. The Makeup Station – The hired help came in handy here, too. I got Q-tips Precision Tips and cotton balls to keep it all sanitary and we kept the choices to a minimum. (Pablo mentioned that the girls looked like they didn’t have any makeup on so I consider that a huge success!) Oh…and did I mention the insane metallic tablecloth from Oriental Trading? Isn’t it amazing? (Note: There’s a silver one and a gold one but the gold one is actually gold on one side and silver on the other. It’s basically a big sheet of mylar. I’m dying to use it for a craft project but I’m not sure what. Ideas?)



6. The Beading Station – This was an 11th hour addition by Sophia (cause she’s smart like that) and as you can see, it was literally a bowl of beads, some strings and scissors. Of course, it was a huge hit and the kids probably spent more time at this station than any of the others.


7. The Fashion Show – This was completely unplanned but apparently Sophia can’t have a birthday party without having a fashion show in the middle of it. Pablo announced all the models in his best announcer voice and after watching most of the 7- and 8-year-olds “walk the runway”, 4-year-old Lily came stridding out like she had been taking lessons from Naomi Campbell. I mean, it’s quite obvious this girl has been “playing fashion show” for years!

fashion show

8. Dance Party – There was dancing of every kind at this soiree. The kind where you dance in the circle and the birthday girl gets down in the middle. (Yup. That’s Soph rocking out after a wardrobe change.) Freeze dance where the birthday girl controls the music. (I guess that need-for-control gene is hereditary.) And there was even an American Idol-type judging panel dance section, only much nicer. (Everyone got a ticket to Hollywood.)

Here’s a little piece of advice for you: Don’t spend a week making the perfect party mix to play on shuffle because you’ll just end up DJing anyway when they ask you to play Gangnam Style and Girl on Fire and Taylor Swift and  Thrift Shop and One Direction and…


9. The Cake – I love the chance to whip up some sugary goodness so I created a basic but dramatic design. It was a tiered cake with buttercream frosting and accents of white chocolates covered in edible glitter. (There will be a follow-up post with all the details about how I made the glittered chocolates. Stay tuned!)


10.  The Good Friends – No Glamtastic Party is complete without them!


11. The Super Cool Birthday Girl – Sorry, you’re gonna have to get your own. This one is all mine!


Happy Birthday Sophia!


Mom Sue at Home