If you are looking for a fun idea for a children’s party or birthday party, why not choose a masquerade ball for your theme? Kids love dressing up in costumes, and most never get to go to any fancy parties until they are much older. A masquerade ball also lends itself to other fun ideas.
Every masquerade ball needs a ballroom. You can easily dress up a special room on a tight budget. First, choose the room that you will use as your ballroom. A den or large dining room or game room is a good choice. Remove the furniture and line up seating such as chairs and sofas around the walls of the room. This also provides a space for playing games.
Ball attire can be either a Halloween type costume or kids can come in formal wear with a mask of some type. You can even hold a contest for best dressed and best costume.
Decorations can be as simple or as elaborate as you like. My favorite party decoration is simple and inexpensive to make, but very showy. You will need lots of crepe paper streamers and a stapler.
Staple one end of the streamer to the ceiling so that the end hangs down the wall a couple of feet. Then pull the streamer to the center of the room and staple it to the middle of the ceiling so that the middle of the streamer sags one or two feet down from the ceiling. Do this all the way around the room, spacing the streamers 6-12 inches apart along the walls. It gives the ceiling a fantastic 3-dimensional look and at the end of the night, it is easy to take down with a staple remover.
Want the party to be a real hit with the kids? Cover the floor of the ballroom with lots of balloons. Children love walking through them, playing in them, and kicking them into the air. They are also very showy while staying within a budget.
Get out your holiday decorations! Christmas lights are a great way to make a ballroom look fancy. Some Halloween decorations are also suitable for a masquerade ball.
Stores carry other inexpensive decorating tools. One I love is a spinning ball with flashing colored lights that can be hung from the center of the ceiling. They are fun and very exciting, especially when fun dance music is playing. Some shops carry other party supplies holiday decorations! Christmas lights are a great way to make a ballroom look fancy. Some Halloween decorations are also suitable for a masquerade ball.
For a fun party favor that is also an activity, have the kids design and make their own masks. Cut the mask shapes out of craft foam before the party. Tie elastic string to them for securing to the children’s faces, or curl one side of the mask around the eraser end of a fun, sparkly, unsharpened pencil to use as a handle.
Set out glue and decorating supplies on a large table. You can include colored feathers, sequins, ribbon, pipe cleaners, beads, and rhinestones. The masks will take a while to dry, so make sure you do this craft at the beginning of the party so that they will be dry enough not to get ruined when the kids take them home.
Be sure that party foods are not too messy since some children may be wearing their best clothes. Avoid foods with bright red, purple, blue, and green dyes. White cake frosting is usually the safest bet. If your masquerade ball is a bit dark, add sparklers to the birthday cake or cupcakes for more excitement.
You can use any party game, but some games lend a bit more to the masquerade feel. I love the game “who am I?” The host chooses names of well-known people (such as Barbie, Hanna Montanna, etc.) and writes them each on a small piece of paper. One is stuck to the back of each child with a piece of tape. Each child may ask each other child only one question about who they are until they are able to guess who it is from the clues. For example, “am I a boy or a girl?” or “what color is my hair?” or “do I sing?” etc.
If you award prizes for games, this is a fantastic time to offload your Mardi Gras necklaces, Halloween party supplies, and even those sparkly green shamrock antennae you wore last St. Patrick’s Day.
Another fun masquerade ball themed activity is face painting. You will need nontoxic tempera paints. With a little practice, you can learn some easy and decorative techniques. If art isn’t your thing, ask one of the other parents if they would like to volunteer their skills as a face painter.