When my daughter asked for an easy bake oven for Christmas, she started watching baking tutorials on youtube. That's when she saw and fell in love with the 6 layer rainbow cake. She immediately told me that's the cake she wanted for her birthday. So of course I decided to do a rainbow party theme for her 5th birthday. Her birthday is in March and since my daughter told me about this before Christmas, I had way too much time to think about this! But in the end it was a perfect theme for a dreary March day in upstate NY and both my daughter and I loved every minute of it.
The first thing I did was create her rainbow invitation, available in my etsy shop. The invitation is a great way to let your guests in on the theme. The guests were asked to wear their favorite color of the rainbow. It was fun to see so many colorful kids at the party! I knew I wanted to get a rainbow dress for my daughter to wear and I found a beautiful, handmade rainbow twirl dress by Bewitching Stitching. Dresses like this make me wish I could sew! My daughter loved wearing it and she received so many compliments at the party.
For the decorations, I decided to stick with the tried and true balloons and streamers. The great thing about a rainbow party is that it is all about color. For a small price, you get a really big impact. I used the streamers on our dining room wall behind the sideboard where I knew I'd have her cake. I also hung streamers from our fireplace mantle in the living room to add color in there as well. On top of the mantle I put the favor bags (in rainbow colors) which served as another colorful decoration. And my absolute favorite decoration was the rainbow balloon arch. I simply blew up 4 balloons of each color and tied them together being sure to leave a long strand at the end. Then I hung each set of 4 balloons by taping the string to the wall, adjusting as needed to get the arch shape. I also tied 6 balloons (one of each color) together and tied them to our lamp post out front. It was a nice way for guests to spot our house and again make a dreary March day a little brighter.
I ended up making the 6 layer rainbow cake that my daughter saw online. While researching the rainbow cake, I kept finding cake recipes made from scratch. I'm more of a boxed cake kind of baker and figured that should work just as well as any other recipe. And it did. I bought 3 boxes of white cake mix (2 cakes per box) and 3 cans of white frosting. I simply followed the directions on the box, divided the batter in half, added wilton gel food coloring to the batter and baked 2 at a time in 9-inch round pans. It couldn't have been easier. Want to know how to get your cakes to fall right out of the pan? I found an awesome recipe that beats any spray. Simply mix together 1/2 cup crisco, 1/2 cup flour and 1/4 cup vegetable oil and coat your pan with this using a pastry brush. You won't need all of this, so put it in a container and store for later use. I put mine in an empty frosting container. Seriously, you'll never have a cake stick to your pan again! I frosted it with the white frosting and topped it with the cutest cake topper ever. It was custom made by Sonia over at Tiny Blossoms. My daughter even helped customize it by picking out the dress color, hairstyle and other details. It was the perfect addition to add a bit of color to the outside of the cake and a beautiful keepsake for my daughter after the party.
In addition to the cake, my daughter and I made rainbow colored Fruity Pebbles treats. They're basically rice crispy treats, but with fruity pebbles instead. Way too sweet for my tastes, but the kids loved them. I also put out rainbow colored goldfish and a rainbow fruit platter. The fruit platter was a hit with the kids and it made me feel good that they weren't just getting junk food. Plus it looked so pretty!
For the favors, I found some adorable mini crayon rolls in a rainbow fabric by My Sunshine Designs. I bought some journals in the dollar section at Target to go with them. I also made rainbow barrettes inspired by this tutorial. I used a different style barrette and hot glued the cloud instead of sewing it on. They turned out so cute and I made 10 of them for $6 with materials left for more! For the favor bags, I designed some tags in photoshop, cut them out with my circle punch and glued them on the front. If you don't have a circle punch, you can keep them square and just cut out with scissors. Click here for a free download of the tags!
We also did a couple of crafts when the guests first arrived. I bought rainbow colored beads and the kids made necklaces and bracelets. I also had paper plates cut in half to color a rainbow. Super easy and fun for the kids. Then we played a few games: rainbow beanbag toss, pin the cloud on the rainbow and the clear favorite, Rainbow Punch (tutorial found here). I didn't get pictures of the games as I was too busy running them and forgot to take them before hand. Oh well.
It was a great party and I'm so glad my daughter found that rainbow cake. I know I'll never forget her 5th birthday party and hope that it's a happy memory for her too.