No Thanks
Let

Keep In Touch With MarthaStewart.com

Sign up and we'll send inspiration straight to you.

Martha Stewart takes your privacy seriously. To learn more, please read our Privacy Policy.

Messy Party

Martha Stewart Kids, Volume 21 2006

Preschoolers have a knack for getting dirty -- so why fight it?

Get the birthday boy to paint with abandon on card stock then cut into postcard invites. Rubber- stamped office labels wrap around the sides and highlight the theme.

The day before, make batches of play dough for the favors (how-to below). At the party, give each kid a tray with premeasured play-dough ingredients, cookie cutters, and a rolling pin, then tie on kid-size aprons and let them mix some up themselves.

Play Dough How-To
Ingredients
1 cup flour
1/2 cup salt
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
1/3 cup water tinted with 17 drops of food coloring


1. Pour flour, salt, and vegetable oil into a medium bowl, and stir with a wooden spoon.

2. Add colored water, and knead dough with hands until it feels smooth. If the dough is crumbly, add more oil; if it's sticky, add more flour.

3. Dough can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to two weeks.

Messy Party Food
Later, guests dig into ooey-gooey banana-split cake made with alternating layers of vanilla cake, vanilla pudding, whipped cream, bananas sliced lengthwise, and chocolate syrup.

Comments (3)

  • 22 Feb, 2010

    I did this for my three year old this year and we decorated our own cupcakes and I purchased a variety of items such as googly eyes, washable paint, feathers, colored paper and glitter from the crafts store and all the kids painted, colored, and frosted cupcakes to there hearts content. The invitations even said please come dressed for a mess

  • 22 Feb, 2010

    I did this for my three year old this year and we decorated our own cupcakes and I purchased a variety of items such as googly eyes, washable paint, feathers, colored paper and glitter from the crafts store and all the kids painted, colored, and frosted cupcakes to there hearts content. The invitations even said please come dressed for a mess

  • 2 May, 2008

    So easy and super fun for the little ones to make playdough! We used this idea on a playdate. It was a hit with my 4yr. old son and his preschool friends! The kids were so proud of themselves for creating something they made all by themselves.