This is my Michael that I talk about so much on here :) He just makes me smile! And how could I not when I see those eyes of his light up. He's a genuinely happy soul!
I had so many ideas for his 2nd birthday party this year, but I wanted to make sure it would be something he would LOVE and really get to enjoy...that's the whole point!
He has lots of interests...animals, books, getting dirty, coloring, music...the list goes on and on! He also gets the biggest kick out of all types of transportation. We'll be driving down the street and he'll see a big truck and he'll announce in his deep trucker voice, "That's a BIG TRUCK!". He points out the school bus that drives past our home multiple times a day, the garbage man, the delivery truck, the mailman, and he'll say "LISTEN!" when he hears an airplane and point to the sky. So of COURSE I decided to go with a transportation theme for his big day.
Have you ever read the book, Go Dog, Go by P.D. Eastman? I used that as a starting point because Michael can quote the entire book!
For the invitations, I made each of Michael's little friends a shirt to wear to the party (I also made shirts for his 1st birthday...a dinosaur theme)
I bought a pack of white t-shirts and I used the iDye brand dye to make two colors...bright green and a rusty orange (I thought it was going to be yellow, but it turned out MUCH darker!) Oh well, it worked in the grand scheme of things. I left Michael's shirt white so he would stand out since it was his big day!
I just followed the instructions that came with the dye and did it on the stovetop, but you can also do it in the washing machine.
After the shirts were dyed, I washed and dried them. I wanted each shirt to be unique, so I made 6 or 7 drawings from Ed Emberley's Make a World book. SUCH A COOL BOOK! I probably bought it ages ago (15 years ago?) but it has come in handy for different projects...Michael loves looking at all the fun drawings...so do I!
Instead of freezer paper, I used contact paper (that's what I already had) and drew the shapes, cut them out with an x-acto knife and pulled the backing off. Then I easily adhered the contact paper to the cotton shirt.
All ready for paint!
I used fabric paint and generously covered the area, taking care to not let the contact paper bubble up...so SUPER FAST and easy! And the fabric paint makes it soft even after it's dry. I also used a permanent felt-tip fabric marker to add more detail (it washes really well too...I was skeptical!)
I packaged them up with a silly note and we handed them out a few days before his party.
All ready to be delivered!
This was really the only semi-decent shot I got of the gang at his party. 1 newborn and 5 toddlers=super wiggles, just like it should be :) Michael LOVED watching each friend come to our front door and would shout out the vehicle on each of their shirts. I was thrilled that he loved it :) I also added a special label on the back of his shirt...I thought it was appropriate :)
I was wondering if he would really like his shirt as I was making it for him. I received my answer the other day when he saw me putting the laundry away, weeks after his party was over..."TRAIN SHIRT! TRAIN SHIRT!! PUT IT ON!" That was the icing on my cake :) All the work was definitely worth it!