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New Balance Sneakers for the entire family!

* This post is sponsored by Superbalist. It's the beginning of a new school year and the start of all kinds of extra-murals and sports for our crew... That means shoe shopping. More specifically, sneaker shopping! Growing feet need new trainers for netball, hockey,...

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Lockdown Party ideas: DIY Teddy Bears Picnic Party

by | Apr 15, 2021 | Just Kids, Party Inspiration | 0 comments

How are we already celebrating Eliana’s LAST single-digit birthday? Our eldest is 9! This past year has changed our family in many ways…, bringing us closer together, while also reminding us of what matters most – the ones we love. So, we decided to celebrate our girl with an intimate backyard DIY Teddy Bears Picnic Party. I have to admit, I was surprised when Eliana requested a Teddy Bears Picnic but love that she still enjoys a theme with so much innocent charm. We had a lot of fun planning and prepping together even while keeping the Covid pandemic in mind.

diy teddy bears picnic birthday party ideas

How we kept our party “safe” during lockdown

* Please Note: These are tips and ideas put together with the help of doctors we trust. This party was also hosted while in level 1 of lockdown taking into consideration the restrictions set by the South African government.
  • Small is key. It wasn’t an easy choice but Eliana only invited her 3 best friends. Siblings were welcome and the parents could decide whether they wanted to join or simply drop off the kids.
  • Outside! Spending time in a big open space in loads of fresh air is best hence the picnic theme.
  • Everyone was asked to check for symptoms before leaving home and set up a sanitation station to welcome our guests. We also provided masks for all the guests.
diy teddy bears picnic party ideas
kids teddy bear masks
  • No cute party table this year. Pretty picnic blankets and pillows spaced out throughout the garden kept every family safely distanced from each other while still being able to have a good time.
setting up a backyard picnic party
  • No sharing either. We kept our water pitchers, decanters and jugs hidden. Rather providing each family with their own “picnic basket” – in this case either a large wooden crate or ice bucket – containing everything they needed. Individually packaged lunch, party packs, water, drinks, serviettes, plates, cutlery etc. Nothing needed to be shared.
  • Plates and cutlery could also be thrown away after use. Store & More sell a great eco-friendly, biodegradable selection of takeaway boxes, plates, knives, forks, spoons and more.
diy teddy bears picnic party details

Now for the fun…

get the kids involved

When it comes to planning our girl’s birthdays, the focus is on them! My taste, likes and style come second to what they want for their special day. That being said, we always have a budget. Two ways we save are by keeping things at home and also doing as much as possible, ourselves.

The girls helped put together party packs, they make decor, join in setting everything up and more. This theme lends itself to a few DIY projects…

party planning tips for moms
Felt bear Ears for all the guests

These are so easy to make and turned out adorable. A few alice bands, pieces of felt and a glue gun was all that was needed. Eliana even added a glittering crown to hers, because every birthday girl deserves a touch of sparkle.

diy teddy bear ear how to
Easy kraft bag bear party packs

We transformed simply kraft paper bags into a tribe of bears using glue, a permanent marker and white paper. The ears were cut from an extra kraft paper bag and simply glued onto the fold. Lia helped her big sister to draw and cut out white circles using a plastic cup, pencil and scissors. I stepped in and drew some “beary” sweet faces after all the pieces were stuck onto each bag.

diy kraft paper bag party pack teddy bear

Then it was time to fill all the party packs. I had already bought all Eliana’s favourite party snacks and treats. The girls just needed to divide it all between the guests. This part was actually a lot of fun to watch. Eliana made sure her little sisters knew exactly what to do and the three of them put together every party pack without needing a helping hand from mom (or dad).

Each guest’s party pack included:
  • A pretty sugar cookie (made by the incredibly talented Artful Biscuit Co.)
  • Homemade popcorn
  • A small bottle of BIONA organic mini fruit bears – made with real fruit juice. These don’t contain any artificial colours, flavours or gelatine. A party must for our girls! We usually buy ours from Wellness Warehouse.
  • Another BIONA favourite of ours are the Biona Organic Rainbow Lollies – same natural goodness and yummy taste. Also bought from Wellness Warehouse.
  • Every Teddy Bears Picnic Party Pack needs a chocolate caramel bear.
  • A chocolate Steri-Stumpi
  • And also some good old water BUT we still tried our best to minimize waste (even though everything needed to be wrapped and sealed). Water in a Box is a fantastic alternative to single-use plastic bottles. Not only are these boxes of water more sustainably packaged and proudly South African but the profits made from each sale actually contributes towards providing students access to professional career coaching in underprivileged schools. Definitely the best water in town.
  • Other extra included disposable bamboo cutlery available from Store & More. A bear serviette and custom made bear mask made by a friend.
teddy bears picnic party pack ideas
handmade teddy bears as party favours

Now this is were things got interesting. Seeing as the party was small, we wanted to add something special… a handmade teddy bear for each guest.

diy teddy bear pattern mayalief

My friend Michelle, from Mayalief was kind enough to print a few of her incredible teddy bear designs onto a large piece of fabric. I carefully cut and stitched together every little bear while dad and the girls stuffed the tiny arms, legs and bodies. Each little girl bear got a pretty party tutu as well, while the boy bears sported dapper bowties. Every little bear also needed a party hat!

These took quite a bit of time and effort to make but were well worth it, doubling up as decor and a much appreciated gift to each of Eliana’s friends.

Making things pretty…

No one does a celebration quite like Konfetti Love. Marissa and her team are the party experts! With many stunning decor items ready to hire. There’s no party theme they can’t help to make a reality…

prettiest boho party decor for kids

We rented pillows, blankets, flower pots, baskets, buckets, linen and the prettiest, simple, yet elegant arch backdrop for Eliana’s Teddy bear’s picnic party. Different shades of soft blush pinks, ochre and white came together perfectly against the green backdrop of our garden.

diy teddy bears picnic party decor

A neighbour cut down a tree recently and was kind enough to give us a few pieces. A little bit of sanding turned them into the perfect picnic tables.

lockdown party ideas

Add a few bunches of fresh eucalyptus and some interesting sprigs Ava picked from our garden.. and Eliana’s picnic party was perfect!

diy teddy bears picnic party decor ideas

Food fit for a Teddy bears Picnic party

Beautiful platter and self-serve stations were a NO! This year everything needed to be wrapped and individually packaged. Luckily nowadays healthy snack and treat options are plentiful.

lockdown party ideas picnic
For lunch each picnic basket contained:
  • Kraft paper plates and napkins with disposable bamboo cutlery
  •  Water in a Box 
  • Individually wrapped lunch for the adults and kids. The adults enjoyed preggo rolls while the kids got a Fry’s vegan hot dog, both served with a side of grapes. The biodegradable lunch boxes were also from Store & More.
  • We also added homemade coleslaw in glass jars.
picnic birthday party food ideas
then, of course the cake!
teddy bear birthday cake

As a gift to Eliana, her aunt baked the loveliest, old-school teddy bear chocolate cake. It reminded me so much of my own childhood years and seeing her face light up as we brought it out was a party highlight!

diy teddy bears picnic birthday cake
diy teddy bears picnic party

NEXT, the Entertainment!

Another way to save on party expenses and waste is to include decor and games that can be enjoyed long after the celebration ends. Land of Lark makes a range of incredible local toys (find our brand feature HERE). Their “Toss the Teddy” target practice hoop was the perfect way to kick-off play. A classic!

diy teddy bears picnic party games

In our home, no party is complete without a bit of Instax magic. Lia played photographer and snapped some treasured memories to share with everyone.

instax mini party favours

The handmade teddy bears proved an instant hit too!

how to make your own teddy bear

Everything came together perfectly…

All that was left to do was find the perfect outfit, get dressed and enjoy the day. Linen dresses and jumpsuit always feel like the perfect summer picnic look and thanks to BENA Women and Storm & Sky we gals felt pretty and comfortable all day.

diy backyard picnic party

Eliana’s party may have been a lot smaller this year, but in many ways, it left a far bigger impression than any before. We spent the morning catching up with a handful of loved ones while the kids happily played and reconnected too. We enjoyed long conversations, creating meaningful memories and soaking up the sound of each other’s laughter.

Who knows, these “lockdown” parties may just stay the norm long after lockdown is over…

diy teddy bears picnic birthday party just a mamma blog

Quick list of suppliers for Eliana’s DIY Teddy Bears Picnic Party

boho teddy bears picnic birthday party 1
Checkout our CELEBRATION PAGE for more party inspo.

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Just a mamma

is a space for Mammas by a Mamma. Intended to inspire, motivate and be helpful. No judgement or expert advice – just gorgeous photo shoots, fun celebrations, great finds for mamma and baby, inspirational moms I have come across, places to go and vacations to have, as well as my own journey of motherhood and family life.

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