Every year we try to come up with a new and creative way to have a family New Years Eve party that is kid-friendly but also is fun for the adults. It’s a tall order, but once your tots are past the toddler stage and don’t require as much direct supervision, it’s totally possible. That being said, I have also turned into a party pooper in my old age and if I stay up for the midnight ball drop, I don’t want to be up all that long after it happens! Which makes a family New Years Eve pajama party a brilliant idea for celebrating. You just climb in bed after you’re done with the pop clink fizz part of the evening.
We set up a family New Years Eve party for Celebrations.com with the theme “Putting 2015 to Bed”, otherwise known as “Pajama Party Down Until the Ball Drops.” A mouthful, I know, but it looked great on the pillows I made. And super simple to do. You can use all the ideas below, or just pick a few that are going to make it the most fun and least stressful to pull off for your group. And that group could be just your family or all the families you know! Just scale things up. Also, there are quite a few free printables you can catch on Celebrations.com to make it all the easier to celebrate.
Pajama Style Family New Years Eve Party
NYE Pajama Party Decorations
Not much to this! Keep it simple. I used exactly four things to liven up my food area.
Giant NYE letters – you can use this template at Celebrations.com to make big letters out of foam core or cardboard. If you use cardboard, apply a little paint to make them crisper looking and party ready.
Sewn paper garland – same idea as in my graduation party sewn circle garland tutorial, except I made triangles instead of circles. Any really great crafty party idea is flexible like that! Use this all over your party space if you are so inclined. It’s a great easy/cheap way to decorate.
Mod table cloth – I’m counting this as decoration, as I did spend quite a bit of time making it. I took an old sheet, and ironed on Swiss crosses to create this trendy look. Just love the way it looked on the table!
Pajama Party Pillow – Who puts pillows on a buffet table? You have to be willing to think outside the box a little sometimes when you’re designing parties. Pillows work fine, I’m not that crazy; they don’t take up much space leaning against the wall out of the way of the food. I used the freezer paper method I used on this t-shirt to create the graphics on the pillow cases, and just sewed two uninteresting squares of fabric together to make the case itself. (I’d Google making a square pillow case if you need better instructions; I’m not much of a seamstress!) The pillows are 16 inch squares, and you can download the pajama party down files here to make your own templates.
NYE Pajama Party Food
For a New Years Eve pajama party that is going to include the whole family, I thought it would be great to do a brunch and sleepover inspired sort of food offering. Let your imagination run wild with the kinds of food you can put out in that theme–there are a ton! For ease of preparation, I came up with some simpler ones that don’t take a ton of effort to prep.
Chicken and waffles – This creation from the west coast is so good, and will be a party pleaser. Since we’re making this appetizer size, we’re also going to make it easy. You can buy miniature waffles already made in the freezer section and grab a bag of chicken nuggets while you’re there. Pour syrup into some disposable shot glasses and stack your heated up chicken on top of your waffle and add a fun party pick.
Pancake stacks – You can make up a bunch of silver-dollar sized pancakes to stack up, OR you can go to the freezer section in the grocery store and buy them ready made. I found them in pink at my local grocery. Which made them better. Stack them up, add a pat of butter, and party pick them.
Popcorn crunch – Popcorn is a party classic! Drizzle some melted white chocolate and sprinkles on your popcorn before putting into some free printable boxes for a great New Years Eve party treat.
Milk and cookie bar – I learned at one of my very first parties that a selection of milk for the kids to pour is a party win. I never thought it would be so well received, but there it is. Set up a couple flavors of milk for midnight snacking and a few choices of cookies for your guests. I like the bite sized ones here, but full size cookies are also good.
Bunny slipper bon-bons – Ok. These aren’t pull it out of the package easy, but you don’t have to actually bake anything. It’s a brownie bite rolled into a ball, dipped in white candy melt and rolled in coconut on top a finger sandwich cookie. I used a little white fondant for the ears and frosting in a tube for the nose and eyes. Probably the most time consuming piece on the bar, but they’re cute!
Other Family New Years Eve Pajama Party Accessories
There are a few extras you can make for your family New Years Eve party that will put some polish and shine on it, but aren’t essential to your efforts. Again, pick and choose what you can do without a lot of extra stress!
Fringed picks for food – The ones on our table were made with tissue paper using the champagne pick tutorial here. I cut wood skewers in pieces to make the wooden part of the picks for the size food I was using them with.
Printable sign – Frame up a 5×7 free printable “Putting 2015 to Bed” sign as an extra decoration!
Party hats – Here are a few free printables and some instructions to make party hats for the evening. Because it just wouldn’t be NYE without them! Pick up a few disposable type top hats at the craft store (they’re everywhere at Christmas) or some plastic top hats to make them.
Confetti cones – Cut up tissue paper for large-style confetti pieces and wrap them up in paper cones for tossing at midnight!
Hope you and yours have a fantastic family New Years Eve party and celebration, and would love to hear any other ideas you think would be a great addition to a pajama style NYE party!