Throw a Fall Harvest Party

Celebrate the season with a round-up of fun, harvest-themed d?cor ideas and activities.

Everything in this slideshow

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Angie Arthur Photography

Celebrate with Family and Friends

Get everyone in the mood for fall with an outdoor Harvest Party to welcome the season.

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Angie Arthur Photography

Paper Apples

Set the theme with this simple, low-cost craft for fall. Add variety to your display by making orange pumpkins, too!

What you'll need:

  • Colored cardstock
  • Brads
  • Scissors
  • Hole punch

Make it:

  • Cut leaves and punch a hole in the end of each leaf.
  • Cut colored cardstock into 4 10-inch by ? inch strips, and punch a hole in both ends of each strip and in the center.
  • Place brad through all 4 center holes, then another brad through all end holes.
  • Spread strips in a circle and secure the brad.

More ideas:

  • Invite your guests to join in an apple picking game. Hang paper apples from trees around your home and provide each child with a basket to gather their apples. For a fun surprise, tape a piece of candy to the inside of each one!
  • Decorate tabletops, mantles and the backyard.
  • Turn apples into a crafty candleholder by placing a battery-powered candle inside each hollow apple; it creates the perfect ambiance for the parents' table at your fall harvest party.

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Crafts for Kids: Darling Dishes

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Kim Byers

Acorn Cookies

These fall-inspired cookies are made from kids' favorite sweets.

Ingredients:

  • Mini Keebler Fudge Stripe cookies
  • Hershey's kisses
  • Icing
  • Black Licorice

Make it:

  • Attach Hershey's kiss to bottom of a mini Keebler stripe cookie with a dot of icing.
  • Place a small amount of icing in the center hole of the cookie and insert a short piece of black licorice for your stem.

More ideas:

  • Invite your guests to joint in a squirrel scavenger hunt. Write clues on leaf-shaped pieces of paper for children to find plastic-wrapped acorns all over the house and yard. Children can find one acorn per clue or have multiple clues leading to their "winter stash" of hidden nuts.

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Angie Arthur Photography

Cupcake Toppers

Cupcake toppers make these desserts even more enticing!

What you'll need:

  • Cardstock
  • Printer
  • White lollipop sticks
  • Rubber cement glue
  • Scissors

Make it:

  • Download artwork, select image, scale to size, and print.
  • Cut out images.
  • Sandwich a lollipop stick between two images, both facing outward, and glue together.
  • Press lollipop stick into dessert once dry.

More ideas:

  • Make personalized toppers by using your favorite fall pictures of your guests and children.

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Angie Arthur Photography

Forest Critters

Printable art can serve as wall d?cor or placemats.

What you'll need:

  • Cardstock
  • Printer
  • Image

Make it:

  • Download artwork from The Celebration Shoppe and print images.
  • Hang as wall decor or laminate at a local print shop to use as placemats.

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Angie Arthur Photography

Nature Trail

Natural elements work double-time as serving platters. Here, timber rounds and a mini hay bale act as a decorative cake stand.

More ideas:

  • Use tree trunk stools and hay bales for seating or tables.
  • Try tree trunk pavers as a path between activities.
  • Use mini pumpkins to line a walkway or sit atop fence posts.

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Angie Arthur Photography

Banners Abound

Colorful and easy-to-assemble banners add bold color to the great outdoors.

What you'll need:

  • Cardstock
  • Printer
  • Ribbon
  • Wooden clothespins

Make it:

  • Download artwork, print images, and cut into triangles.
  • Clip the triangles, pointed-side down, to the ribbon using wooden clothespins and space evenly.
  • Hang finished ribbon banner from both ends in desired location.

More ideas:

  • To coordinate banners with your specific color palate, cut triangles from decorative paper, tablecloths, fabric or felt.
  • Use banner to line your fence or string between trees to enhance the party d?cor and create a defined space for the event.

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Kim Byers

Owl Donuts

Your guests will get a "hoot" out of these tasty desserts.

Ingredients:

  • Crumb nut donut for the body
  • Keebler Grasshopper cookies for the eyes, bottom
  • Keebler Fudge Stripe mini cookies for the eyes, middle
  • Blue diamoned shaped non-pareils for the eyes, top
  • Blue, pull apart licorice for the hair
  • Mini Tootsie Rolls for the nose
  • Icing

Make it:

  • Use the crumb nut donut as the base for the body.
  • Place two Grasshopper cookies side-by-side on the donut body. Attach with icing.
  • Press a Fudge Stripe mini cookie onto the center of each Grasshopper cookie. Attach with icing.
  • Place a blue diamond non-pareil in the center of each Fudge Stripe mini cookie. Attach with icing.
  • Pull apart a few strands of licorice and arrange between Grasshopper cookies to form the hair. Attach with icing.
  • Finally, shape a mini Tootsie Roll into a slight hook and press onto donut as the nose. Attach with icing.

More ideas:

  • Have a decorating station at the party where kids can personalize or make their own owl treats. Lay out ingredients buffet-style with a step-by-step demo and allow kids to pick their own donuts, cookies and candy decorations according to their tastes. Double the fun and have them make a tree hollow or bird's nest craft as a take-home box for their goody.
  • Send guests home with an owl dessert in a decorated gift bag as the perfect thank you for coming.
  • Display on a platter set inside a bird's nest for a decorative twist.

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Angie Arthur Photography

Signs of the Season

Let it be known that fall is here! This simple sign welcomes guests to your Fall Harvest Party.

What you'll need:

  • Cardstock
  • Printer

Make it:

  • Download artwork, type desired message, and print.
  • Decorate by gluing ribbon around the sign's edges or printing a border around the message.

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Angie Arthur Photography

The Right Invites

Themed invitations get guests in the spirit.

What you'll need:

  • Cardstock
  • Printer

Make it:

  • Order printed invitations online.

More ideas:

  • Include a bag of candy corn, plastic fall leaves or pumpkin-shaped confetti inside the envelope for a fun surprise.

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Angie Arthur Photography

The Great Pumpkin Race

A fall round-up game completes your harvest party theme.

What you'll need:

  • 2 baskets per team (any medium sized container will work)
  • 10 mini pumpkins per team

Rules:

  • Have guests group into even teams.
  • Place an empty basket on the ground outside and a basket filled with 10 mini pumpkins placed about 20 feet from the first. Create this set up for each team playing.
  • Host a relay race-style game where one player from each team races to carry one mini pumpkin from the full basket to the empty basket. Once the player places the pumpkin in the empty basket and races back to his starting position, it is the next player's turn.
  • Do this until all the pumpkins have been transferred; offer prizes to the winning team.

More ideas:

  • Give each guest a mini pumpkin to take home as a prize.
  • Have a craft table where kids can make mini jack-o-lanterns with paint, glue and assorted craft materials with leftover pumpkins.

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Angie Arthur Photography

Dessert Labels

These easy-to-make cards can serve as labels (good for picky eaters), place cards, or nametags.

What you'll need:

  • Cardstock
  • Printer
  • Scissors

Make it:

  • Download artwork and print.
  • Cut out labels leaving an extra 2 inches on the bottom.
  • Fold the extra 2 inches back as a stand for the card.

More ideas:

  • To help labels stay put, tape to the table or place a weight on the card stand.

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Angie Arthur Photography

Takeaway Treats

Printed labels make goody bags a chic gift.

What you'll need:

  • Sandwich size Ziploc bags
  • Candy filling
  • Cardstock
  • Printer
  • Rubber cement
  • Scissors

Make it:

  • Download artwork, type message and print labels.
  • Fill Ziploc bags with candy.
  • Cut out two labels per goody bag.
  • Glue labels to top of goody bag covering the Ziploc portion of the bag.

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Angie Arthur Photography

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