Party bags are all the rage at children's birthday parties for elementary school-aged children. Every child now expects to leave the birthday parties they attend with a well-stocked bag in hand. For parents, the challenge is to come up with something different than the run-of-the-mill trinkets that can be found at any store and make their child's party bags ones that will be remembered long into next week.
For toddlers, party bags have the added challenge of needing to be filled with choke-proof items. It is best to keep their bags relatively simple. The Land of Nod carries adorable bath-time finger puppets which could be divided up among party-goers. Add a bag of toddler-safe fruit snacks and a teething biscuit, and you are sure to please your toothless attendees.
For the four to eight year old birthday boys and girls, some fun options might include personalized M&Ms or Hershey's Kisses. Miniature gumball machines, balloon racing cars, and tattoo kits are all likely to be a hit. Sensory-oriented gadgets like slime, squishy balls, and sticky creatures appeal to this age group as they are still in a highly tactile-driven phase of learning.
Once you get to the tweenagers, the genders come more into play. While boys may still enjoy the gumball machines and racing cars, girls will be rapidly developing decidedly feminine tastes. Up to about ten years old, girls may still enjoy frilly party bag goodies like "Make your own Fairy" kits, but if in doubt, you are safer with items like fingernail polish and Emory boards.
For something unique, have personalized hand sanitizers made. Snap bracelets, friendship bracelet kits, or other jewelry crafts are still relatively safe, as long as they are fashionable. Consider having the birthday boy or girl pick out ten songs and burn them to a CD. Make copies for the guests and include these in their party bags. Add personalized jewel case covers to commemorate the event.
Another element to consider is the bag itself. For younger children, a themed plastic party bag is preferable. They are inexpensive, can be matched to the rest of the party décor, and have beloved characters on them that will please your child. Once older, however, changing up the packaging can add as much to the party "bag" as what you put inside it. For a girl's party, consider using cake boxes with satin ribbons to hold goodies. These boxes can be found in the wedding supply section of craft stores and are reasonably priced. For boys, consider using small tool boxes.
With a little imagination, your child's birthday party bag is sure to be a big hit!