Make your own party bags on a budget!

This year, we held a soft play party for O’s 3rd birthday.  It’s the first time I’ve considered making up party bags for the other children as a “Thanks for coming” token of appreciation in exchange for their gift for O.
When O has been to other parties, he has received some pretty spectacular things in a party bag.  We’ve had a cone of sweets with personalised stickers from a local old-fashioned sweetie shop, mini colouring books and Crayola crayons and sets of Lego to name a few.  
In my view, the kids really aren’t interested in the fillers that you pay a fortune for.  I think they prefer the sweets in the bag that usually their parents would only give them half of in one sitting! After the cost of the party, the birthday cake, O’s presents and the cupcakes, the party bags were really something that I didn’t want to spend a lot on.  If I knew the other parents of O’s friends from nursery wouldn’t slate me, I wouldn’t bother with party bags for their little darlings.
So I decided to set myself a budget of £30 for the party bags for up to 25 children and this is what I bought…
3 x pack of 8 party bags = £2.55
Bumper pack of mini Haribo bags = £2.95
Haribo Maoam stripes = £1.00
2 x pack of Flying Saucers = £2.00
4 x pack of Swizzels Teeth/Toothbrush sweets = £1.00
4 x pack of Chewitts = £1.32
2 x pack of 4 rubber balls = £1.90
3 x pack of 8 jewelled rings = £2.85
3 x pack of 4 sticker rolls = £2.85
2 x pack of 16 toy soldiers = £1.90
Pack of 8 water squirters = £0.95
Total = £21.27
That’s £8.73 less than the £30 budget I’d set myself.  
That means that each party bag cost just 85p to make.  I was over the moon with this result!  Back of the net! 

We divided the sweets up evenly as best we could between the bags, then set the girls aside from the boys.  Each of the boys got 3 or 4 toy soldiers and either a bouncy rubber ball or water squirter with their sweets, whilst the girls received a roll of stickers and a couple of jeweled rings.  I also added a Lion King cupcake wrapped in a napkin instead of cutting up portions of the birthday cake.

It really is possible to create your own party bags on a budget.  God only knows how much you would pay someone else to make up something for you, when really they can be done so quickly with a trip to Wilkinson’s or the pound shop.  It’s something that I’d do again next year, no question about it.  O’s Godmother and I actually really enjoyed putting them together too!  It’s rather therapeutic after a hard and stressful week!

Have you made your own party bags for your little one’s party before?  Did they cost less than you expected?

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