• Katie

Birthday Balloon Bash

Party time. A full 3D balloon wall backdrop, confetti cake, and a soft-serve ice cream bar. It was a perfect 25th birthday.

I am obsessed with birthdays (especially mine) and I am obsessed with events, so obviously I had to make my 25th a big deal. I think it's so important to celebrate ourselves once a year and do the things we love and surround ourselves with loved ones! I was racking my brain, trying to think of all the things I loved the most that I could incorporate into a party - puppies, tacos, cookies, murderer in the dark, and my baby - not necessarily in that order. After many failed attempts to get someone to let me borrow their litter of puppies (haha) I realized I needed to come up with a new plan.

In the middle of the night a week or two before my birthday, it hit me! A soft-serve ice cream machine and 3D balloon wall! Considering party etiquette, here is why this was perfect.

  • If you decide to invite groups or individuals who don't know each other (which you have to do for your birthday so you can see as many people you love as possible, obviously) then it's nice to either have planned activities or have something to fill up people's time while they are hanging around. Then they won't feel lonely or awkward while you are talking with someone else.

  • If you aren't doing to-go party favors, super awesome and memorable parties still have something to offer the guests. Remember your guests are taking time out of their day to travel to you and support you! It's nice to show them you're grateful for that.

  • Even if you don't have a full-blown photo-booth, having a little corner that matches the theme of the party where people can take a picture, will make the party last forever through pictures! That is fun for your guests and also makes all your hard work a little more worth it. (:

The ice cream machine / bar was a perfect thing for people to do when they got there so there was no awkward standing around, people had ways to fill their time - and heck, it was also yummy and fun.

Even though the seating was open in a large circle around the gathering area - which could be uncomfortable for people who don't know each other - guests could take their time deciding where they were going to sit while they were stacking on any of the 20+ toppings. There were no entrances where the room went silent and you try to decide which stranger you should sit by while everyone watches - there was too much to do!

The 3D balloon wall was amazing. Everyone wants a rad backdrop for their next record-breaking Insta post. We set it up on a wall opposite of a big window, with sheer curtains so the light was ideal and everyone was feeling fresh to death in their pics.

The Ultimate Birthday Balloon Bash Party Guide:

1. Reserve your ice cream machine and make sure it comes with ice cream mix to put into the


  • We rented our machine from Plan-it Rentals. It was perfect for our needs, but the paint was chipping and wasn't very pretty. I wouldn't use it for a wedding or more elegant event. If you are using it for an elegant event, I would recommend trying to see it in person or getting a current picture of it.

  • They are HEAVY! It was hilarious trying to get the thing up our one step from our garage into the house. I would highly recommend having help loading and setting up. They gave us a hydraulic lifter and it was still intense.

  • Buy your ice cream bowls (and coordinated spoons, napkins and cups if you want).

2. I got 6oz bowls so that people could get a good amount without eating all of their ice cream

in one sitting - which, lets be honest, I would totally do in a heart beat if someone gave me

a huge bowl and free reign!

3. Bake your cakes now, I promise! I took a basic cake decor class last year and the basics can

sure get you far - especially with the current trending cake styles.

  • I used two Betty Crocker Confetti Fun Cakes with basic box instructions. Fancy, I know. Then I split all the batter into four round pans and baked!

  • When they are completely cool, wrap them in Saran Wrap and stick them in the freezer. This will help them stay sturdy while you are cutting and frosting them.

  • A couple hours or days later you cut off the tops of the cakes so they are nice and flat.

  • While the cakes are still frozen, put a nice thick layer of frosting between each layer of cake.

  • Once they are all stacked you will add a crumb coat. A crumb coat is just a thin layer of frosting over all the surface of the cake so when you put the the outer layer of frosting on, the crumbs aren't getting mixed up in the frosting. Then put it back in the freezer.

  • A few hours before your party you will put the outer layer of frosting on! I mixed-in a small amount of sprinkles into the frosting and then added more as needed. Glop a bunch on all sides and top of the cake and then spread it around till it is even. You can lift your knife or spoon off of the cake to make all around it, so it looks wispy and casual.

4. I asked a few guests what their favorite ice cream toppings were, and I got a lot of great ideas.

A few days before I crushed up all the toppings and had them ready to go in ziplock

baggies.*Toppings listed below.

5. I got the little serving bowls from Target for 88 cents each! I already had the cake plates.


1. Blow up the balloons! I wouldn't do it any earlier because they can oxidate and lose their shine.

2. Create your work of art. My sister and put the balloons on the wall starting from the center, and I

loved every second of it. We twisted them around our wrists and tied them in knots and

attached them to the wall with scotch tape. It took us about two hours to get it just how we

wanted it.

3. Frost the cake and top with extra sprinkles.

4. Fill the bowls with toppings and set out in the serving area with serving spoons in them.

Extra Tips:

  • We set the table in front of the balloon wall for pictures, and then moved it back to the kitchen so we could use the wall as a photo backdrop for guests.

  • We set up a tripod, but everyone ended up taking pictures for each other, and we didn't use the tripod.

  • Remember to have a nice, clean trash can out where people can find it (:

  • Your favorite music playing softly in the background is a nice touch.

  • *Toppings: strawberries, raspberries, blueberries, bananas, cherries, sour gummy worms, gummy bears, Oreos, nutter butters, waffle cone, Snickers, Reese's, Kit-kat, Twix, Cadbury Mini Eggs, pretzels, peanuts, caramel sauce and chocolate shell sauce.

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Springville, Utah