Hello I’m Lucy and we absolutely love a themed party in our house, especially one that we can go to town on with details and DIY ideas. So when my son set his heart on a Horrible Histories party this year, my mind started racing with all the foul food and gruesome games we could play! For me the build up to the party is almost as good as the party itself, researching ideas and discussing what sort of food he would like to eat. This is a theme where you can let your and their imagination run wild.
Think horrible and you are on the right track!
My boys helped plan and make everything from the scroll invitations that he proudly gave out to all his school friends to the sweets in the disgusting dessert table. He invited his whole class and we took over our local village hall which became the vile venue and asked the parents to text their rsvp for a terrible time!
All their friends love the books and tv series and even just reading through one of the magazines gave us loads of ideas. We started with the fancy dress selection and decided on a colour scheme, choosing reds and golds for our very own King Sammy Henry who became Henry VII.
A hall is a big space to decorate but it was transformed with a few packets of plastic bunting that you can save and reuse afterwards for another time and the large foil numbers and letters looked fantastic along the stage. There was no forgetting whose birthday it was!
The party tables became King Henry’s banquet tables layered with some velvet effect material makeshift table cloths and golden plastic cutlery and crockery. We scattered faux diamonds amongst toy rats and I gathered together every old vase, pot and candle stick I had from home for the centre pieces. Everyone sat down to a brightly coloured crown and they tucked into a Great British favourite – fish and chips, before filling a striped candy bag with goodies from the sweet table.
I raided all my wooden boxes and my desk storage made a perfect cake stand. I wish I could take the credit for this amazing bang on theme cake but the local bakery did an incredible job and we all couldn’t believe the details in the miniature frames. Cleopatra was my favourite – just look at the snake! If you love the two tier look you can save some money and use a false polystyrene cake instead, just remember which one is the real one when you cut it!
I borrowed some old books and balanced a few leftover Halloween decorations on top and added bowls of Saxon skulls, rotten chocolate rats, putrid pirate gold in little organza pouches, wax seal cookies, honeycomb ear wax – it was a feast. Horrible jelly fingers and brains and I even hunted down some blue jelly eyes and highland toffee. A nod to Medieval Scotland!
We found a similar font, Block Cartoon, to the official Horrible Histories text and made food labels and signs for the games. You can have so much fun thinking of ways to add in the Horrible Histories theme. Rotten Romans, Awful Egyptians – pick all your favourites.
We set up three Horrible Histories party games for the children to dart between:
- Woeful Second World War Lucky Dip – fill a bucket with shredded paper and a piece of tarpaulin or army netting. I found ‘bomb’ firecrackers for over 3s which went down a storm.
- Wooden Stocks – They all lined up and soaked the birthday boy’s Dad with silly string pistols and wet sponges!
- Foul Photo Booth – make a DIY booth with hats, costumes, wigs, a few glitter curtains and an inflatable frame. Everyone loved it from their baby cousins to the grandparents.
I filled plain kraft bags with free downloadable crafts and games from the CBBC website including this cut out Elizabeth I head dress and this Viking mask and moustache download. There are loads of fab free word searches online too and I popped a plastic eye ball and an official Horrible Histories merchandise pencil inside and made the word searches and colouring pages into scrolls. It looked much more impressive than it really was! We wrote out individual name tags in ink which gave them an older feel and if they smudged we just said it added to the horrible effect.
I loved seeing them all dressed up, racing around the hall and playing musical bumps and statues. Our very own King Henry went to bed that night absolutely thrilled and exhausted. We couldn’t recommend this theme more – we learnt so much about Great British history and the best thing for Sammy was a plastic pig mask wedged in a bowl of bunches of grapes in front of him at tea time. So much fun!
Have you had a Horrible Histories party? We’d love to see! And for even more kids’ party ideas, stay on the Party Delights blog: