Low/High Balloon Party--the Side by Side Comparison

I thought it might be fun to do a side by side comparison of the different elements of the two versions of the Balloons party.  

Both are cute, but see the difference raising the balloons up makes?  Such a small thing, but even if that were the only difference, you'd notice and like it. Adding the bunting, of course, just gilds the lily.

Table settings for the boxed lunches.  Incredibly similar, but look at what a difference adding a little bit of ric rac makes to the placemat.  And tucking in a striped straw with a printable party flag adds an extra layer of visual interest, too.  It's not big, expensive items that make a party special, it's the small details.  

Store bought sugar cookies and licorice "strings" make an incredibly easy balloon-themed treat.  But if you have some extra time, special homemade (or purchased) custom sugar cookies are always a hit with kids.

Store bought meringues were a light-as-air treat at the low effort party.  For the high effort party, I made my own meringues, piped into cloud shapes and dusted with blue luster dust.

I almost always use lollipop sticks for printables stuck into cupcakes.  So does everyone else.  It's food safe, they're the perfect height--it's a logical choice.  But it's not your only choice.  As soon as I saw these curly, spiral candles in my local Party City, I knew they'd be absolutely perfect for this purpose!  They're also food safe, and add such a whimsical, fly-away quality to the balloon printables.

Sometimes the food is exactly the same, but the presentation is what changes.  "Bunches of balloons" (grapes) were served in cute striped paper cups at the low effort party.  Darling!  A huge hit with the three year olds!  But for the high party, the grapes were displayed differently--mounted on straw "strings" and floating above the clouds.

For the boxed lunches, the menu was the same.  Grilled cheese and "balloon strings" (shredded carrots).  Both were fun.  Both were festive.  But the grilled cheese sandwiches made with homemade bagels...yum!  Of course, the best part turned out to be the excitement of opening the lunch boxes.

Never underestimate the simple joy of opening a present--even if it's just lunch!

The table was the same.  So was the tablecloth, the party hats, the cushions, the lunch boxes.But adding some balloons, bunting, and ribbon make all the difference in the world.

Look at how cute that printable happy birthday banner is!  So easy, so festive.  The ribbon bunting at the high party isn't better--it's just different, and handmade.  Adding some ribbon tassels and balloon flowers at the corner made more of a difference than switching out the banner.

Balloon "floral" arrangements are so much fun!  And way less expensive than working with a florist!  Seriously simple balloon tulips from the low effort balloons party were charming, fast, and easy to make.  The arrangements for the high effort party were more complicated, but still much less difficult than they look!

The activity here is exactly the same--coloring--but wrapping some of the cupcake wrappers around the boxes of crayons make the activity that much more personal.

Activities at the low effort party were seriously low effort.  Run around and play with big balloons!  At the high effort party, an age appropriate balloon obstacle course kept the kids busy.  You know, I don't know which one looks like more fun!

It's not a party without a hat!  No matter how elaborate or simple, party hats are good fun.

Tomorrow we'll start the tutorials from this party, so be sure to come back for all the DIY fun!

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