Painting Themed Birthday Party

Painting Birthday Party from At the Picket Fence

There is so much about raising a boy that completely mystifies me, but a few basics that I’ve learned so far are that they have a very unique way of channeling creativity, they love to make messes and they love to destroy.

In fact our furniture, floors & baseboards have achieved an authentic distressed look thanks to my son’s expertise in the above categories. What better way to celebrate that unique creativity and talent for mess-making than at a Painting Party.

Painting Themed Birthday Party Ideas from At The Picket Fence

This party was for my son’s 2nd birthday and with only a few guests invited, we kept it pretty simple. I scanned one of my son’s paintings to create the invitations, found a quote from Picasso that celebrates the boyish propensity towards destructive art, and used the painting’s colors to create the color palette for our party.

Painting Themed Birthday Party Ideas from At The Picket Fence


We featured a gallery of his artwork as the birthday bunting and framed the piece that inspired the party on the dessert table.

Painting Themed Birthday Party Ideas from At The Picket Fence

Painting Themed Birthday Party Ideas from At The Picket Fence

After a few visits to the paint department, I had amassed enough chips to create a large 2 for the front door and used the extras for cupcake toppers and dessert table décor.

Painting Themed Birthday Party Ideas from At The Picket Fence

Painting Themed Birthday Party Ideas from At The Picket Fence

Our tablecloth was a painter’s cloth and my plan had been to buy actual paint palettes to display the food but budget trumped creativity.

Painting Themed Birthday Party Ideas from At The Picket Fence


What I love most about this theme is that it is cheap, (our decorations were mostly free), it’s re-usable (all of the favors were art supplies for guests to use at home), and it’s fun for any age or gender.

Painting Themed Birthday Party Ideas from At The Picket Fence

The art stations were all age-appropriate with mini canvases to design, large easel painting, do-a-dot art stamps, salad spinner spin art, and face painting.

Painting Themed Birthday Party Ideas from At The Picket Fence


Painting Themed Birthday Party Ideas from At The Picket Fence

The favors were smocks, paint chip bookmarks, watercolors, and mini easels to display their canvases at home.

Painting Themed Birthday Party Ideas from At The Picket Fence

My son has already declared that his next birthday will be a “building birthday” and has been hoarding recycling from around the house as materials for his future party.  Judging from the “laser gun” that he made in Sunday school instead of the lamb ears that he was supposed to make, I’m pretty sure he will interpret this birthday theme in his own unique way.

And I will learn to embrace all of the messes & creative destruction along the way!

Thanks so much for joining me at the Fence today,

Julie Signature

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  1. Bridget says

    This is such a great idea for any gender! I love how you incorporated paint swatches throughout. This has definitely given my ideas for one of my next birthday parties!

  2. LAURA S says

    Oh Julie, this is truly a beautiful idea and your son will be able to look back at his Birthday photos and Smile!! Cute party favors…one could add a nice paintbrush or small water color pad for the older children or adults, as well. You could also have a chalk station, crayola station (For those who don’t like to get messy)…oh, the sky is the limit! My mind has gone nuts thinking of all the ways to host such a colorful party. TFS!!

  3. says

    Oh My! I love this themed party! I think it may be my favorite themed party yet! Thanks so much for sharing…it looks amazing and I’ll bet those kids had a BLAST!

    • Julie says

      Hi Marty, I love the idea of an art party for older kids! Maybe incorporating some art history/art appreciation elements into the party and finding an artist in residence that could offer a short instructional time. You could stage your very own art gallery showcasing the work from your son’s classes. Such possibilities!

  4. Brooke Halgren says

    Julie, this is soo cute! I can’t believe I have never seen these pictures before! You are soo creative! LOVE!!!

  5. Ellen says

    Fantastic! My daughter loves to paint & we are running out of original b-day ideas. She’ll be entering the actual teens next year & this might be a fun, different thing to do & tie it to a sleepover. I’ll certainly remember this!

  6. Brandy says


    I’m hoping to also plan a painting party for my son who will be turning two this February (getting a head start during naptimes because I’m due again in January).

    Was hoping you could tell me where you got the favors and canvases. Of course I want to save a bit of money…

    And what about the paint pallet for the kids and aprons?

    • says

      Hi Brandy,
      Most of the supplies for the party came from Lowes/Home Depot (paint swatches, stir sticks, drop cloth), Ikea (art smocks, mini easels, paintbrushes, and small metal buckets (used for the brownie pops & to hold paint brushes), and Michaels (small canvases and craft paints). I also bought a cheap salad spinner from Ikea that we used for the spin art. I didn’t include a picture of that activity but it was a fun one for the 2 year olds. I cut out shapes from white card stock and they selected one to place at the bottom of the spinner. A few blobs of paints of their choosing (I used washable paint for easy spinner clean up) and a few vigorous spins on the spinner created some fun art pieces. We strung twine and used mini clothespins to dry the art. You might want to experiment beforehand to get the right proportions of paint for the spinner. It’s pretty fun!
      Happy planning!!
      Julie recently posted..Nature Inspired Fall Decorating & A Break-UpMy Profile

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