I was debating whether to write about my son’s recent birthday or not since I just made the cake using my usual, easy vegan chocolate birthday cake recipe. But our Star Wars birthday party was such a success that I decided to take the time to write this post to show that it is possible to have a great themed birthday to rival the ones you see on Pinterest that is absolutely allergy-friendly.
When my son first told me he wanted a Star Wars party I got really excited and went to start browsing for ideas on Pinterest. Then I got a bit discouraged because a lot of the theme ideas were very food-centric. While wookie cookies, Hans Solo rolos, and the like are all totally adorable, and I would have been all over that stuff in another life, anyone who has to cater to food allergies on a regular basis understands why my heart fell a little.
My one glimmer of hope – storm trooper faced marshmallows – fizzled when I checked the ingredients for edible markers to find a series of E numbers, all of which are known to trigger asthma and are not recommended for children or anyone with a predisposition to allergies or asthma. I definitely didn’t have plans to make my own “ink” to paint the marshmallows with, and I quickly realised that there was no way I was going to theme the food at the party because this working mamma definitely doesn’t have time for that.
So the menu was settled pretty quickly in my mind – pita with hummus and falafel, plus vegetable platters and some pretzels. I made my peace easily with this because I feel very strongly that birthday parties do not need to have a lot of candies and treats. And not just that they don’t need them – I think we kind of do a disservice to our kids by projecting these strange expectations of what a party should have. Needless to say, nobody noticed the lack of candies at our party, and the kids had more than enough energy to go wild without all that sugar.
So, what made this party a Star Wars birthday party then?
How to Throw a Star Wars Birthday Party Without Relying on Food
Beyond space themed decorations and setting up our projector to cast the night sky on our ceiling, I had two big DIY projects for this party – the party favours, and a Star Wars birthday cake.
DIY Star Wars Party Favours
It was important to me that the party favours wouldn’t be just bags filled with candy and chips, and after a quick (meaning extensive) scan of what eBay and Amazon had to offer I settled on some really cute and age appropriate Star Wars stickers and tattoos.
I also purchased a package of glow sticks and, with the help of a roll of black duct tape and a silver permanent marker I was able to put together some really cute and extremely popular mini light sabers. You’ll need to be careful not to crack all of the glow sticks in the process, but luckily they come in a package of 100 and are very friendly on the wallet so you won’t need to worry about it.
To make your own glow sticks you will need to cut pieces of tape roughly 2″ (the width of the tape roll) by 3″ and wrap the tape around the end of the glow stick carefully. Then, use your silver marker to draw patterns on the taped area to polish the look (I actually had a lot of fun with this part, trying to think up new variations).
I also made my own Star Wars activity booklets by adapting various Star Wars printables I found online and printing them out myself. I chose to include an “Eye Spy” game, a maze and a colouring page which I cut to a booklet size using a paper cutter at my office (keep in mind paper shifts when you use one of these, so your edges will not line up well if you cut too many pages at once).
To complete the party favours I added a YumEarth Organic fruit juice-flavoured lollypop and a small bag of pretzels to give the kids something to snack on while they do their activity pages. Adding all of the loot into my homemade Star Wars loot bags, I used a hole punch to punch two holes at the top of each bag and then threaded the light saber through it to keep each bag closed and complete the Star Wars Birthday theme.
We hired an entertainer to lead the activities at the party. The thought of leading 20 ‘wildling’ boys in a non-native language was too overwhelming for me, and it was 100% the right decision. We had an amazing amount of enthusiasm from the team we worked with at Yeladudance. They even brought along these great light up foam “swords” which I immediately decked out with more of the black duct tape and some sparkly silver stickers to take them all the way to light saber and complete the favours for the party.
How to Make a Star Wars Birthday Cake – BB-8 Birthday Cake
To see the easy way that I made my BB-8 Starwars Birthday Cake, keep reading!