My older son probably didn’t even know what Star Wars was until he was nine, but he has a little brother, and like all little brothers everywhere, he was introduced to things like Star Wars and Harry Potter and Lord of the Rings far earlier than I’d have preferred. He may not know what it really is, but if big brother likes it, it must be awesome.
It’s no surprise, then, that Noah has been obsessed with Star Wars since he was four years old, and requested it for his fifth birthday party. And it’s no surprise, since he’s my second child, that I have no problem with this.
In fact, I had a ridiculous amount of fun with it, and like anything I find fun, I go a little over the top.
I’m not sure how I ever planned parties without Pinterest, printable downloads, and pennant banners, but somehow I muddled through. Now that I’ve discovered all these things, it’s more a matter of editing down the ideas, not thinking up new ones. Here’s what I chose to do for an age-appropriate Star Wars party.
- The invitation requested that the boys come to complete their training as a Jedi. This seemed less violent than some other theme options. I got this idea from another Star Wars party and made my own invite.
- So, of course, I sewed Padawan robes for all the boys. This was easy, actually (more on how below).
- I made all the decorations (anything commercially available seemed too dark, scary, or violent. What’s with Darth Maul anyway?) Luckily, the boys’ large collection of Star Wars toys helped out here, and there are always downloadable fonts, scrapbook paper, and banners to come to my rescue.
- The games were Jedi training games (all inspired by ideas I found on Pinterest): Using the force to keep balloons in the air, constructing light sabers, obstacle courses (think Luke on Dagobah), destroying the Death Star pinata, and defeating Lord Vader (aka big brother in a recycled Halloween costume).
- I had simple food with Star Wars-inspired names (again, mostly from Pinterest sources): Vader Veggies, Wookie Cookies, etc. But my best effort was the truly inspired “Qui-Gon Jinnger Ale,” which I’m proud to say was an original idea and produced serious laughs from the boys, especially my 11-year-old. I also made lightsaber handles to hold freezy pops.
- I made an R2D2 cake and discovered how much easier fondant is to use for detailed decorating than frosting. I even made my own fondant out of marshmallows.
- I made goody bags with custom tags (I heart free fonts and downloads) and filled them with Star Wars stuffed toys (cute versions of Darth Vader are actually a thing), those little Squinkie-like tiny rubber figures, age-appropriate Star Wars tattoos I made, and a lightsaber flashlight. (Not actually sold as such but looks just like one!)
If you love party plans and Star Wars (and Star Wars made cute enough for five-year-olds), read on for more photos and how-tos.
Making Padawan Robes
As any self-respecting Star Wars fan girl knows (or has her sons tell her), Padawans (young Jedi in training) wear brown robes with linen shirts underneath.
I made ten little robes out of brown fine-wale corduroy and some inexpensive muslin. There’s no pattern, because there are no sleeves, ties, collars, or other details. It’s basically just a rectangle with a v-neck cut out of it. I didn’t hem anything or finish any seams. It’s a costume. They are five.
First I “measured” by having Noah lay on the fabric with the fold at the top.
Then I cut a v-neck opening at the fold.
I sewed two strips of muslin to the v-neck to look like a linen shirt under the robe and then we used strips of the muslin to make belts to hold the robes on. Done.
Star Wars Decorations
I made the decorations for the party using a few pages of Star Wars scrapbook paper, a free font I downloaded called Star Jedi that looks just like the original Star Wars logo, little flashlights that look just like lightsabers (found at Target; they are actually emergency lights/whistles), youngified character art from a Star Wars printable preschool lesson, and lots of duct tape and fishing line.
The Death Star, made from a foam craft ball covered in duct tape and detailed with a Sharpie, hovers above the cake, surrounded by TIE fighters I made out of cardstock and art from the preschool lesson download.
I was pleasantly surprised that I remembered to flip the image of half of the TIE fighters so that when I glued them together, they matched up. Usually this is something I learn/remember the hard way.
It’s hard to see them because it is daylight, but there are a few lightsaber/flashlights also hanging near the TIE fighters. The birthday banner was made with Star Jedi font, white card stock, and Star Wars themed scrapbook paper, along with some solid colors. The black and star gauze that the letters are stapled to was left over from Owen’s movie night party.
A tiered stand I already had, a couple of toy ships, and lots of guys raided from the play room complete the decor. I just bought plain paper goods since the colors were surprisingly primary. I printed stickers with my little characters and icons and stuck them to the cups and called it good.
Activities: Jedi Training
Since the party was billed as Padawan training, we had several activities for the boys to do to become Jedi.
First they had to make their own lightsabers. This is just plumbing insulation from the hardware store, plus different colors of duct tape. The boys have a book that describes each Jedi’s lightsaber in great detail, so we added that for inspiration.
Owen made the intricate handles in advance (note book for accuracy); the younger Padawans chose a color for their blades.
If you are a boy and you have a lightsaber in your hand, it is hard not to use it.
Next, the Padawans had to master the Force by keeping a balloon in the air using their light sabers.
Luke cannot complete his training without facing Vader once again.
The five-year-olds faced off against Vader, played by 11-year-old Owen in last year’s Halloween costume. 10 against 1 proved too much for young Vader. I actually was a little worried about him.
The final challenge, destroy the Death Star Pinata!
We made this by spray painting a soccer ball pinata purchased at Party City with mirror paint that I so happened to have in my basement due to a failed DIY mercury glass project. Owen added the details using electrical tape. (There were also dozens of rolls of that in my basement left from Noah’s three-year-old digger/construction party. I have a lot of stuff in my basement.)
We used our lightsabers to whack the Death Star. Obviously.
Star Wars Party Food
The party food was super simple: Ewok Cookies (Teddy Grahams), Vader Veggies, Fruit Sabers, Space Puffs, and Qui-Gon Jinnger Ale.
We also had the R2D2 cake, which turned out pretty well, though the boys kept telling me he was too short, and freezy pops with lightsaber handles (black felt plus silver ribbon). I followed this tutorial for the cake, including the marshmallow fondant recipe.
Star Wars Party Favors
The boys went home with a lot of goodies, since they already had their Padawan robes, foam-and-tape lightsabers, and lightsaber freezy pop holders. I also made tattoos using my Star Wars characters and some other icons I found online (the Rebel Alliance icon, the Star Wars movie title, the Millenium Falcon). We added a tiny Star Wars character (like these), a lightsaber lookalike flashlight, and a small plush Yoda, Darth Vader, or Chewbacca.
Using my font, downloaded icons, scrapbook paper, and laminating sheets, I dressed up party store bags in primary colors.
Getting tattooed by big brother Owen/Anakin/Darth. (Anakin sewed his own costume and because he was a Jedi, it is not brown but linen. Everyone knows that, right?)
Star Wars Party Supply and Tutorial List
- Printable preschool Star Wars pack
- Star Jedi free font download
- Printable temporary tattoo paper
- R2D2 cake tutorial
- Plumbing insulation and duct tape for lightsabers – Menards
- Lightsaber look alike flashlights, tiny characters, and Star Wars plush – Target
- Star Wars themed scrapbook paper – Archivers
- Paper plates, cups, favor bags, soccer ball pinata – Party City