Nautical Birthday Party

All aboard for this seafaring birthday party!

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Amy Mikler

Flags, boats, and yellow, red, white, and blue stripes set the scene for this sea-inspired soiree.

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Anchors Aweigh

Amy Mikler

Anchors Aweigh

Craft this boat from cardboard boxes as the centerpiece of the party.

Boat:
What you'll need 2 cardboard boxes (22"x22"x22"), clear packing tape, yellow plastic cake plates, hole punch, black brads, glue

Make it:
1. Fold flaps into boxes. Tape to secure if needed, leaving one slit open for kids to enter.
2. Slice boxes at 1 corner seam per box and tape together to form a boat shape.
3. Punch 8 holes around plates, and insert a brad into each hole.
4. Glue plates to the side of the boat as portholes.

Sail:
What you'll need 1 yard of Tyvek, 2" blue painter's tape, scissors, 12"x12" piece of craft paper, 6' to 8' wooden dowel, 3' wooden dowel, clear packing tape, rubber mallet

Make it:
1. Lay Tyvek vertically on floor and cut diagonally from corner to corner to make 2 triangles (you'll use one of them).
2. Lay triangle in a sail-like position (right-angle is on the bottom left) and fold the bottom under about 12", trimming off 8". Tape the cut edge to the back, forming a channel.
3. Apply painter's tape in stripes vertically down the sail, spaced 2" to 3" apart, wrapping ends around the edges for a clean look.
4. Cut an anchor or star out of craft paper and tape to the top third of the sail.
5. Insert 3' dowel into horizontal channel, and tape tall dowel to the back vertical edge of sail.
6. Place dowel inside boat and either tape to secure or hammer into ground with rubber mallet.

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Flying the Flag

Amy Mikler

Flying the Flag

To make this garland, fold 4" pieces of striped and solid grosgrain ribbon over twine and hot-glue to secure. Cut triangle into the bottom edge to form the flags.

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Captain's Table: Placecards

Amy Mikler

Captain's Table: Placecards

Fold simple origami boats to make place cards.

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Captain's Table: Wave Cups

Amy Mikler

Captain's Table: Wave Cups

Dip a sponge in blue paint and swipe around the cup to create a wave pattern.

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Captain's Table: Yummy Utensils

Amy Mikler

Captain's Table: Yummy Utensils

Draw four red lines on a white Lifesaver with edible color markers. Tie around your napkins and utensils with twine.

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At the Helm

Amy Mikler

At the Helm

Any sea vessel is incomplete without the classic steering wheel. Click to the next slide for instructions.

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How to Make a Steering Wheel

Amy Mikler

How to Make a Steering Wheel

What you'll need: 12" Styrofoam wreath, red crepe-paper streamers, clear tape, 8" unfinished wood wavy bid paddle fan sticks, yellow craft paper, scissors, glue

Make it:
1. Wind streamers around wreath, covering completely.
2. Using a knife, create 8 slits evenly around the wreath. Push paddle sticks into the Styrofoam so they stick out evenly on either side.
3. Cut 2 5" circles from yellow paper and glue one inside wreath by applying glue to tips of fan sticks. Glue second circle to back of the first.

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Boat Booty

Amy Mikler

Boat Booty

Fill these bags with treats for your guests to take home.

Originally published in the May 2012 issue of Parents magazine.

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