This year my daughter turned two. Due to Covid-19 we opted to keep the “party” as just a family thing, but I also still wanted to give her the magic of a real party. Since she absolutely loves pretend tea parties, we got her a real set and held a princess tea party for her.
I also wanted to play around with the idea of a party that didn’t rely on balloons. Although I did end up using plastic, all of the items used can be sourced plastic free.
Tissue paper flowers
This is where I ended up using plastic. The idea of the paper flowers was to replace plastic, but every single one I could find came wrapped in plastic. I finally just bought the set of 6 from the dollar store, and used 2 packages of each color for the display.
I wrote the company about perhaps switching to paper packaging, as it would be relatively easy to do and Dollar Tree has a sustainability plan indicating that they care. I’ll write a follow up post if I get a reply.
Later, I actually did finally find a source for these with compostable packaging according to reviews on the website. You can find them here. This is an unaffiliated link, and I haven’t actually personally purchased from them, but will for my next party. I’ll update once I try it out.
We actually got this unicorn tablecloth for her 1st birthday, and I opted to reuse it instead of purchasing a plastic tablecloth or a new one. I’m not sure if it is cotton or some plastic, but in either case it’s reusable.
To help carry the paper flower look, we picked a bouqet of flowers from our rose garden, and pulled the petals off of roses that were old anyway. We used the petals on the floor and the table, and a bouquet as a center piece.
The tea set is a tin one that will hold water/tea. We used cooled peppermint tea in it, and let her have a blast pouring everyone 1,000 cups of tea. The cups and pot are very small, which is perfect for small hands just learning to pour.
Honestly this tea set was the best part of the whole display, and it came in a reusable box. I believe there was a plastic cover over a cardboard support for the product though.
A lot of party waste comes from packages of chips, soda bottles, and all those other party goodies. Since my daughter doesn’t like any of these things anyway, we did chocolate dipped fruit and a veggie tray, which she loved.
The fruit and veggies were easy to source in reusable produce bags, and the chocolate chips we found in bulk and also used a reusable bag. Left over food was composted, so in this area there was very little waste.
My daughter loved the set up, the tea set, and being a princess for a day. We didn’t need to do any party games because she was busy pouring those 1,000 cups of tea, and it was a very positive experience. I don’t feel like we missed out on anything, and there was very little plastic (but still some) involved.
If you’ve done this set up or a similar one, please post it in the comments below. We’d love to hear from others about how they made their kids party a good one with less plastic.