Colour is key to planning this art-inspired party. Set the tone with these easy invitations: Get a watercolour set for each guest; remove the label and trace it onto a piece of cardstock to create your own card that includes the date, time and location of the event.
Decorate the “studio” with lots of colour — think bright balloons and streamers, and transform a wall into a blank canvas by taping up a large piece of craft paper and providing paint, markers and crayons. Draw pictures for guests to colour in, or let them create an abstract piece (place a drop cloth or old sheet on the floor for easy cleanup). And don’t forget the smocks!
Set up stations where kids can try out different mediums, like painting, playdough and collage (guests can glue glitter, pictures from old magazines and foam stickers to a piece of cardstock). When your starving artists are ready to eat, serve up spaghetti with a variety of colourful cream sauces and grated cheese for a funky feast. For dessert, let kids decorate their own cupcakes with a variety of frostings, sprinkles and edible glitter. At pickup time, invite parents in for a “gallery” viewing of their pint-sized Picassos’ work.
Stick to it
Have kids make mini easels out of Popsicle sticks. Paint four sticks; let dry. Hot glue the tips of two sticks together in the shape of an A, then put glue on the edge of the third stick and attach to the frame. Glue the last stick to the back for a stand.
Players secretly pick a colour and line up against the wall. The child who is “it” closes her eyes and calls out colours. When the players’ choice is called, they must make their way across the room without getting caught.
Paint each guest’s palm with an even coat of paint, then stamp their handprint on a mini canvas.
Get a small clear paint bucket for each guest (available at craft or dollar stores). Fill them with colourful treats like crayons and gum balls . Attach a thank-you tag using a piece of twine.
A version of this article appeared in our November 2013 issue with the headline "Art party," p.28.