Now before I start, I am in no way suggesting that all girls should want to be princesses. Or for that matter that all boys should want to be knights, or not want to be princesses. This post in no way dictates how children should play… I just thought it was a nice idea…phew! With that out of the way, here is my guide to throwing a knights and princesses party!
At the beginning of summer, we were lucky enough to be asked to visit one of the English Heritage’s sites and we chose Whitby Abbey. We were also asked to return to another site later on in the summer to attend a special Clash of the Knights historical combat presentation. We went along to one at Beeston Castle and all I can say is WOW!
What an awesome and inspiring day! Beeston Castle itself is wonderful, with stunning views at the top of the hill and even without the live battle we would have had an amazing day. But as it was, the Clash of the Knights was also amazing and left me thinking “I can do this at home!”
So that’s what I’m going to do.
The costumes at Beeston Castle’s Clash of the Knights were amazing. I do not expect to replicate them perfectly but I think that party guest will look alright with simple tunic :
- cut sleeves from a basic t-shirt
- cut along each side of the t-shirt, up to the neck, so that it slips over the head
- kids can decorate the t-shirt with their chosen knight’s design
Alternatively, for those who sew, you can follow this tutorial from Eat, Sleep, Make.
Kids can help to make their shields, and this can be a lovely party craft activity too. Have cardboard shapes cut out and ready to go that can be decorated however your little knights please. Glue a cardboard handle to the back before the party too.
For your princesses, simple dresses can be put together by pinning long strips of fabric to party dresses if the guests don’t turn up in a dress of their own. A lovely activity they can take part in is making their own princess hat. Again, these can be ready made for the guests to decorate when they arrive at the party. This is a lovely little princess hat tutorial.
A Knights and Princesses party would not be complete without a battle! This game is best played outside but if you have the space in the house or you’ve hired somewhere bigger then it will work inside too. Split the children into teams and give them different coloured balloons, depending on the team. The children then need to try and steal the opposing team’s balloons. The winning team by the time the music stops is the team with the most balloons.
Hunt the Dragon Eggs
This takes a little preparation before the party, but it’s worth it. Before you blow up the balloons, choose five or six to pop confetti inside. These are the magical Dragon eggs. Hang lots of balloons around the room/ garden and ask the children to pop as many as they can. If they pop a magical Dragon egg, they win a prize!
Set up an area that will be the jousting court and give each child a newspaper/ pool noodle baton. Then just let them run off some energy! You can set up an obstacle course too.
Save the Princess
Hide a few dolls around the room/ garden and ask the children to find them. Each doll can be traded for a prize.
Every party needs party food. Obviously. Here are some knights and princesses ideas:
- castle sandwiches. Easy to make and so pretty!
- Princess crown sandwiches
- Pretzel swords. Very easy to make, and can be done with breadsticks too.
- Princess cupcakes- with little crowns or sparkles on the top
- Knight cupcakes- with shields on the top
- Fruity princess wands
All I need now is to convince the preschooler that this is a winning idea!
As you can see, we were hugely inspired by our visit to Beeston Castle and if you get the chance to go along too, then I highly recommend it. The children still talk about it most weeks and we will definitely be back! The Woodland park itself is truly beautiful and a fairly strenuous walk. It is not pram friendly as you climb a rather steep hill towards the castle but if you can’t get all the way up, you won’t be disappointed with the rest of the surroundings. What will Beeston Castle inspire in you?
We received free entry into Beeston Castle for the purposes of this review.