|Butterbeer, with colors of Ravenclaw, Slytherin, and Hufflepuff|
A while back, my daughter had a Harry Potter themed party. I'm a pretty big Harry Potter fan, and so is she. She's gone as both Hermione and Luna for different Halloweens. This summer we went to London on a trip and did at least 4 different Harry Potter activities (with which my husband was very patient).
|The entrance to Platform 9 & 3/4|
My daughter and I worked together on the decorations, party favors, and stuff for the party, but really she did the vast majority of the actual work. She made signs for the various parts of the house to identify them as Harry Potter themed. The porch was Platform 9 & 3/4. She has a little shopping cart that she redesigned as the trolley going through the wall.
|She was going to draw bricks on the wall but ran out of time.|
There were lots of things for the guests, including chocolate frogs at Honeydukes' Sweet Shop and Butterbeer. The idea was that the kids would all decorate the chocolate frog boxes, but kids have better things to do at a party, apparently, so they mostly didn't get decorated.
|Honeydukes and the undecorated chocolate frog boxes|
We made the boxes and the chocolate frogs. We bought a chocolate frog mold, and melted chocolate chips into it. We dyed marshmallow fluff in yellow (for Hufflepuff), blue (for Ravenclaw), green (for Slytherin), and red (for Gryffindor). The chocolate frogs were pretty tasty, though also a bit messy.
|A half-eaten chocolate frog and butterbeer (discovered after the party)|
The Butterbeer could be picked up at The Three Broomsticks (kitchen). We experimented with several recipes online, but we discovered that vanilla cream soda was the best tasting and least complicated. At first we added butter extract, but it didn't make a demonstrable difference in the flavor.
|The 3 Broomsticks, Est. 1452 Hogsmeade|
We bought tiny glass mugs from the dollar store and I drew the labels. My daughter colored them and we Mod Podged them on the mugs. We put food coloring in the bottom of the cups and let it dry. The internet suggested that we could add ice and no-one would notice the food coloring, but the internet was wrong. I compromised by spraying a bit of whipped cream in the bottom, then pouring the cream soda on top. The effect was great for color and foam, but the cups were tiny and they tended to overflow as the soda fizzed and combined with the whipped cream.
|Cream soda, food coloring, and whipped cream|
The color worked well and the kids could get sorted into two houses (via Butterbeer and via the chocolate frog). Later they played "quidditch" in the lawn, which basically consisted of Daddy hiding the "snitch" and the kids all running around and screaming til someone found it.
|Butterbeer cups with dry food coloring in the base|
The tiny Butterbeer cups were a good idea, given that we overdid all the other sugar by 1000. Besides Butterbeer and chocolate frogs, we had cookies and cupcakes
. Viera's Bakery in Yakima made us hedgehog cupcakes, which we converted to nifflers by hiding chocolate coins in the paper cupcake liners.
|The Magical Menagerie (Pygmy Puffs and Nifflers now in stock)|
The Xylophone was converted to the Magical Menagerie, but we couldn't quite decide if the Niffler's belonged there or in The Three Broomsticks or at Honeydukes'.
|Niffler drawing by Meghan Flynn|
Somehow the child already had 3 (non-cupcake) nifflers and a hedging, and a number of her other stuffed animals appear to be pygmy puffs. My talented colleague Meghan Flynn (buy her art), gifted Alison a niffler drawing to add to the team.
|Olivander's wand shop in a jar|
We made each kid a wand (which was a ton of fun, really), but hot gluing pencils. I really enjoyed dropping the hot glue into shapes on paper, then peeling them up and using them to sculpt shapes on the end of the wands.
|Olivander's wand table|
We painted some of the wands with glow-in-the-dark acrylic and the kids seemed to like them.
|Our Harry Potter library|
Besides the signs around the house, we collected all our Harry Potter books in one place. Besides the series and the plays, we have one illustrated copy (book 3), a cookbook, and several books I bought in the hiatus between Half-Blood Prince and Deathly Hallows.
|The Rookery (the Lovegood's House) Keep of the dirigible plums!|
My daughter is a big fan of Luna Lovegood (and nifflers, obviously), so she wanted to make quibblers and spectrespecs, too. We tried to get cookies in the shape of spectrespecs, but weren't able to do so.
The girl spend a lot of time making quibblers (with the help of a photocopier). Each quibbler had a pocket with foam. The goal was that kids would trace and cut out spectrespecs and glue them onto plastic glasses, but we underestimated the time and overestimated the general attention span of the group as a whole, so none actually were finished.
|The Quibbler, Birthday Issue by X Lovegood|
Alison designed a dot-to-dot and runes to decode inside.
|The runes on the right say Happy Birthday if you flip the magazine upside down|
I'm guessing very few people got all the Harry Potter references in the party, since most of the kids had not read the whole series--and some had, shockingly, not read any.
|Grimmauld /Grim Old Place "Shh Don't wake anything up" (like the cats sleeping inside)|
I asked Alison to keep people out of a couple of rooms in the house, so she labeled them as Nocturn Alley and Grimmauld Place. Which entertained me and worked in combination with the closed doors to keep the kids out.
|At the start of the flight we decorated the bottoms, but eventually we embraced a simpler aesthetic.|
Since the chocolate frogs were tons of fun and we never got to decorate any, we made more for the family for Christmas. We made the chocolates and put them in a plastic bag, but apparently the pressure of the plane broke the chocolate and caused the colored marshmallow to squeeze out during the flight, so they didn't work particularly well.
|Chocolate frog box from London|
We decorated them together during our flight (about 6.5 hours) Initially we were referencing the official chocolate frog box, but as the flight continued, we just made our own designs, including an "Invisible Chocolate Frog" for the baby (since we were short one frog, and babies done eat chocolate).
|Decorated and put together chocolate frog boxes from Christmas|
The invisible frog box would have been a lot funnier ("fat free, 0 calories, gluten free") if all the other boxes had really had chocolate frogs inside, but the result was still kinda fun.
|The birthday chocolate frog boxes had chocolate frog cards with a place for kids to draw their own wizard (or for marshmallow goo to stick)|