A Celestial Birthday Party for Kids That Was Written in the Stars
We often tell our children to reach for the stars—so what about throwing a birthday party where they can literally do just that? In the case of this celestial fête, Cooper, the two-year-old birthday boy, reached for star-shaped sandwiches, astrologically-themed cookies, and cupcakes that looked as if they were swirled with stardust.
Planned and designed by Karson Butler Events, this sparkling shindig was thrown at the family-friendly Nook space on a warm summer day in July. Sixty-five friends and family were in attendance, and they all got a big bang out of the offerings that appealed to little ones and adults alike. A tarot card reader was on hand to foretell guests' futures while a nearby galactic backdrop served as the perfect photo-opp station. Glimmering stars and luminous lanterns completed the magical scene.
Cooper's mom, wedding photographer Abby Jiu, saw the party as an opportunity for guests young and old to get in on the fun. Explaining that Cooper and his dad have birthdays that are two weeks apart, her goal was to have a party that celebrated them both. She says, "At two-years-old, a birthday party is also a chance for the adults to get together, too."
Jiu adds that a celestial theme was chosen because it's one that kids and adults can enjoy. "Since both birthdays fall under the astrological sign Cancer, it was a fitting theme that could be for both kids and adults," she shares.
Get ready to jump on board for this interstellar voyage, also known as Cooper's star-strewn birthday party.
Beaming from ear-to-ear, Cooper, the birthday boy, and his proud parents Abby Jiu and Jamey Sunshine, pose for a family portrait. Between the tarot card reader, tasty food that appealed to everyone, and décor that would make anyone grin, it was a gathering geared toward every age group in attendance.
This stellar backdrop was crafted by Garrette Turner of Brightly Ever After, who says, "The backdrop was inspired by a classic circular celestial map of the night sky, with a large moon featuring Cooper's Cancer astrological sign and constellation-effect name. Rather than just painting the laser-cut stars, each piece was hand-finished with custom iridescent, matte gold, and starry night vinyl decals."
These snacks are definitely a step up from the freeze-dried fare eaten by astronauts! Instead, the littlest space explorers at the party enjoyed food made just for them. The grazing board of kid-approved treats whipped up by Well Dunn Catering takes a starring role in the center of the table. The galactic runner itself was courtesy of Emily Baird Designs.
Party planner Emily Butler of Karson Butler Events explains that she provided zodiac constellation cookies made by Sugar Rex that featured each child's astrological sign; the sweet treats also acted as place cards. Kids took their cookies home along with calligraphy star tumblers that featured their names.
The party atmosphere looks like a slice of the Milky Way, topped off with the dreamiest clouds around. Turner of Brightly Ever After explains how she created the clouds: "The moody cloud installation was inspired by the glow of a nebula cloud in space, and each cloud was handmade with cotton-pillow fill glued to Chinese lanterns and then hand-painted with an ombré effect. Laser-cut stars and hanging golden starbursts finished the look, which enveloped the kids' tables with celestial magic."
The cosmic decorations and delicious eats served as conversation starters within this space. The adults were able to snack and chat ("Lounging and seating were provided so that guests could eat and relax," Jiu says) while the kids had fun in the Nook play space. One crowd-pleaser among the kids at this party? A face tattoo station.
All That Glitters
The golden, starry lanterns were part of the party's showstopping décor. The mesmerizing lights, along with all of the furniture throughout, were provided by Something Vintage Rentals and brought an otherworldly feel to the celebration.
The zodiac was a running theme throughout the festivities, something that's oh-so-fitting for a birthday party. In addition to the personalized zodiac cookies served to the children, additional zodiac treats were available to all the guests, showcasing signs like Gemini, Pisces, and Scorpio delicately and beautifully designed in royal icing.
Created by Buttercream Bakeshop, these galaxy-inspired confections were a feast for the eyes. The jewel-shaped sweets were made up of Oreos and white chocolate. In the cups, guests savored "Unicorn Bait," otherwise known as popcorn, rice cereal, golden Oreos, and sprinkles tossed together in white chocolate. The cupcakes were topped with white swirled frosting, displaying streaks of cosmic colors.
The cake shone brightly among the other desserts at the party. Also made by Buttercream Bakeshop, it featured two tiers covered in marbled fondant creating the illusion of a night sky filled with deep blues and purples. The attached white fondant pieces offered extra texture that gave it a galaxy-like effect.
Good as Gold
Unlike most children's birthday parties, this shindig also served up plenty of eats for the adults. Butler explains, "The adults had their own grazing board with charcuterie and sandwiches. Pick-up bites of salad and tuna poké were also provided."
The tuna poké bowls were made up of sticky rice, avocados, wonton crisps, and sesame ginger vinaigrette and were served along with watermelon and striped cucumber salad containing feta cheese, red endive, mint, and chili lime vinaigrette.
Total Eclipse of the Card
Jiu explains that Butler "had the great idea to have a tarot card reader for the adults to give them an activity that was entertaining and playful while also fitting with the theme." Butler adds, "It's important to always plan for all ages—and the parents loved this fun touch!"
For an extra dash of fun at the party, temporary tattoos were enjoyed by all—even the adults. "Star and sun temporary tattoos were provided for the kids and adults to give them another activity," Butler says. Along with the star and moon plates, tumblers, and star glasses, they were provided through Karson Butler Events at the Ah Louis Store.
Over the Moon
Party guests were in awe of this spectacular starry soirée. Family members and pint-sized pals alike all attended to celebrate two-year-old Cooper's very special day. Jiu describes the format of the party, saying, "Guests were able to mingle, and kids were able to play and eat the entire time."
Cooper blew out the candles on his very own customized cake. Covered in metallic spatter, the cake prominently featured the Cancer constellation painted on the front to represent the birthday boy's star sign. Individual cupcakes were also served, and there were two delectable flavors: chocolate and vanilla funfetti, both topped with vanilla buttercream frosting.
Event planning, Karson Butler Events
Photography, Abby Jiu Photography
Astrological backdrop and clouds, Brightly Ever After
Star decor and tattoos,
Furniture and lanterns, Something Vintage Rentals
Tabletop runner, Emily Baird Designs
Calligraphy, Laura Hooper Calligraphy
Catering, Well Dunn Catering
Cake and desserts, Buttercream Bakeshop
Cookies, Sugar Studio
Tarot card reader, Elan Artists