The annual visit to Santa is so anticipated, yet so quick. You get the kids dressed up, they are all excited, THEY MEET SANTA, and then it’s over. I say: take your kids to meet Santa with their little buddies, and then have them back to your house for a pint-sized Visit to Santa After-Party. Extend the fun, and get a few more cute pics of the kids while they’ve all cleaned up.

The look of this party was inspired by these red and white mini ornament frames from Quite a Pair of Keepsakes, who sponsored this post. The red and white made me think of peppermint, and then I found the Merry Christmas plates. I knew I had to create a peppermint-inspired party.

Quite a Pair of Keepsakes co-owners Juliet and Shannon hand-make each frame from reclaimed wood, then paint and stain them. The cool thing is that on the front is an acrylic frame where you just slip your photo or art inside. It’s so easy to change out what you’re displaying in the frames. They come in bunches of colors; I just fell in love with the red and white frames.

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I’ve used their frames in several of my parties because I just love them so much.

Grab your coupon code

I saw these mini frame sets, and thought they’d make perfect party favors, which is how I’ve used them in this party. But they’d also be great Christmas gifts. Buy a set and knock out gifts for six people on your list: teacher, neighbor, sister-in-law, mail person, and on and on. They are 4-inches x 4-inches with a 2-inch photo area.

Quite a Pair of Keepsakes has created a 10% off coupon just for my readers: PARTYTEACHER10. Use it to grab a set of mini frames or any other frames from their Etsy shop and make Christmas easier this year! (Plus: shipping on their frames is always free!) The code expires December 8, so you can get your frames in time for Christmas.

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Backdrop

I like to start any party with two things:

  1. Sketching my vision for the party.
  2. Shopping at home.

This party turned out pretty close to my sketch!

Visit to Santa After Party Sketch

Shopping at home happens just to minimize my spending. Every time I get to re-use something, without repeating the overall look of a party, I feel like I’ve spent my party dollars wisely. For this party, I pulled out my Santa portrait (use that Hobby Lobby 40% of coupon!) and created a new party bunting with patterns already in my party stash.

I made my first felt ball garland, and added it to the portrait and fabric bunting to create the dessert table backdrop. (I’ll share a tutorial about the felt ball garland soon.)

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Dessert Table

I kept this dessert table pretty simple, though I did toy with the idea of adding a cocoa station with peppermint marshmallows. (Apparently, I think you can’t have too much peppermint or chocolate in any one party!) White serving pieces made the desserts pop.

I  bought all the treats, since I was spending my time on crafting the bunting, felt ball garland, and balloon garland.) Peppermint bark, chocolate covered pretzels and peppermint ribbon candy all came from Tuesday Morning. I usually try to mix up my dessert table flavor profiles a little more, but I just couldn’t resist those flavors this time! The cake came from a local bakery: chocolate with chocolate peppermint frosting. Did I mention that I really like chocolate and peppermint?

The cake topper is an extra large ornament that I bought years ago. I just wiggled off the cap, inserted a lollipop stick and added a bow with a pop-up glue dot.

Tabletop

The tabletop design started with the Merry Christmas plates. I usually don’t love paper plates, only because I they tend not to stay in place. But these reminded me of something Loralee Lewis might design, and they had the perfect red and white stripe for this party.

I pared the Merry Christmas plates with my white ironstone and a mix of 12-inch x 12-inch scrapbooking paper in red and white designs. In between the placemats and white chargers, I inserted a red fabric napkin. The plastic milk bottles are from Bird’s Party Shop and I wrapped them with left over wrapping paper. (Those little scraps finally came in handy!)

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Party Favors

All December is a giant countdown to Christmas for my kids, and that counting of days especially ramps up after the visit to Santa. So I found this cute free printable Santa countdown calendar from Lovebugs & Postcards and resized it to fit in the Quite a Pair Keepsakes frames.

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To resize the Santa calendar image:

  1. Download the image.
  2. Upload the image to the collage PicMonkey, which is free to use.
  3. Choose the nine square “square deal layout.” It will default to a 2000 x 2000 size.
  4. Insert the image in each square and drag it up so the full beard shows.
  5. Export the collage to your computer.
  6. Open the collage and print it out on 8.5 x 11 cardstock.
  7. You’ll need to trim the edges of each Santa square a little bit more for a perfect fit in the 2-inch x 2-inch frame.

I displayed each frame on a little easel, but the frames also have an upholstery tape loop on the back so you can hang them. The frames did double-duty as table decoration and as our party favors. The kids could each take a frame home, hang it on their bedroom door, and keep track of the days til Christmas. (If you trust them with dry erase markers, they could even dot-out each passing day. If you decide to nab some frames for yourself, be sure to use coupon code PARTYTEACHER10 for 10% off your purchase by 12/8.

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Disclosure: This post was sponsored by Quite a Pair of Keepsakes. I received product and payment in exchange for this blog post and social media shares. All words and opinions are my own. I only accept sponsorship from brands I love, that I think you will love also, and that give me the opportunity to share a larger party planning lesson with you.

 

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