People often say to me "o you must be so sick of Frozen by now" but honestly I'm not. The look of delight on the birthday girl's face as Elsa breezes in, her snowflake covered cape blowing in an imagined icy wind. The sense of wonder when she produces snowflakes from her finger tips and the astonished gasp as she turns her glass of water into snow is hard to beat and that's all before she's even sung Let it go!! It's truly magical and I've never known a theme capture children's imagination in the same way as Frozen.
Having said that occasionally I'll get a very exciting email that starts
"I don't know if you've done this type of party before but I'm stuck and I don't know what to do!"
I love these emails because I know that I'm going to be drawn into a new world, creating a completely new theme and have the chance to make something special and original and if I get it just right I'll be able to make a family's dreams come true.
A couple of weeks ago I was given such an opportunity and I'm still buzzing about it.
"So Schy has requested a Ruby Redfort party… so help me god! I managed the Harry Potter madness last year all by myself but I’m not sure I’m up to it this year. She’s also adamant that I make it “a surprise"
How exciting I thought but Shelly who's Ruby Redfort? A quick trip to the library and a lovely rainy afternoon curled up with tea, toast and a great book and I quickly got the gist and the ideas just came bubbling out. So she's a 13 year old genius, code breaker who becomes a secret agent with the Spectrum Agency o the possibilities for a party!!
We can make ID badges with fingerprints and code names. We can train the new agents with games and call them things like "Master of disguise" and "The guilty party" we'll have to break codes obviously but we'll definitely need a narrative for the whole party. Hmmm? What can we do? And that was when I got completely carried away.
I had this vision of the party guests arriving to find the house is a crime scene complete with police tape and everything a bit ransacked but we'd need a motivation for this and that was when I thought of the perfect set up. I'll send Schy a coded letter from the Spectrum Agency a week before the party telling her she has been specially selected to join them and they have hidden a secret object in her house that she will have to locate in order to prove her ability.
"1st letter received with much excitement. She figured out the code and then it took her a good hour to translate it all. V pleased with her 'intelligence and skill' and kept quoting it to me. It was a winner for sure. She is now excited about finding the hidden object and becoming part of the secret service. Haha"
Then a few days later I sent another letter from The Rebel Rebels (Schy also happens to be a big David Bowie fan so there were lots of references!) saying they knew she had something precious from Spectrum and that they were coming for it. Schy was apparently "Beside herself with the second letter!" and the stage was set for the party.
This was the most fun I've had preparing and performing at a party and I definitely got carried away writing all the different codes and setting puzzles and putting a lie detector app on my phone as a bit of a silly icebreaker game and everything worked a treat it really did. The girls and I had a fab time as did mum who put so many terrific touches to the look of the house and the food, cake and party bags that it felt really special.
"Thanks so much again. The girls all loved it, as did I"
It's an honour to be part of these kind of parties, when someone trusts you to create something completely new. So if you have a crazy idea for a party but have no idea how you'd even start to make it happen you'll have to give Susie Sparkles a call and let me get my thinking cap on to create for you a one off original perfect party.