When you’re 14 and you’ve had almost every party theme imaginable, how do you celebrate?! I’ll admit, I had to get a little creative with this year’s party theme. Long gone are the years of a beloved character to theme a party around. We’ve done the mall parties, the skin care parties, the ice skating parties, even a Favorite Things Party. This year I struggled to come up with something that was truly Ally at age 14. What do these girls like to do? They like to be with their friends, they like to have their own space, they like to shop and they love to make TikTok videos. A night in hotel suite felt like a perfect way to celebrate.
Ally James turned 14 back on January 9th, but because of volleyball tournaments almost every weekend, we pushed her party out a month. (P.S. Parents, it’s OK to do this! In the past 14 years, I’ve pushed parties almost every year to make things less hectic.) We settled on early February, when everyone could make it and we had plenty of time to plan.
With any great party, there is a great invitation. I have always loved vintage motel key tags and knew as soon as we landed on the hotel sleepover party theme that this was the perfect way to announce the party. I found a gal on Etsy that made custom key tags and she created these adorable custom keychains for the party! (We took it a step further and my incredible Cookie Squad at Jenny Cookies Bake Shop made them into cookies!)
In preparation for the big celebration, we booked a suite at the Westin in Bellevue. Our friends at the Westin allowed Ally and I to tour the space before the party so we had a visual as we party planned. The suite was giant and plenty big enough for 12 girls, not to mention had an absolutely breathtaking view of Seattle. We could literally see the Space Needle from Bellevue (several miles away)!
I love to any reason to spoil party guests and a sleepover meant matching jammies, slippers and blankets. I found pink plaid pj pants at Aerie and bright pink blankets at Target. I also purchased simple white pillowcases and had them embroidered with the girls names on them with pink stitching.
Set up for the party was pretty easy. I knew these girls just wanted to hang out, take photos, make TikTok videos and shop at the mall across the street. The only prep I really did was fill the room with bundles of blankets, pillows and pjs, and plan lots and lots of junk food.
The girls arrived at 5pm ready for dinner. What better way to start a party than with a FastFooderie board?! You’ve all seen the charcuterie board and if you’ve followed my blog long enough, you’ve been introduced to my CharTREATerie board, but have you ever heard of a FastFooderie board?! It’s ok, I made it up… and I’m really into it. This will most likely be the first of many!
The FastFooderie board was simple to put together and a hit with the girls. I used ubereats to order a variety of the girls favorite fast foods and displayed them in a way that felt a little more decorated.
Using a large kraft paper roll, simply roll out a sheet to cover the table surface. You could also use a single board, but we had a lot of food and the paper will make for easy clean up.
Once the paper is rolled out, lay out any boards or trays you may want to use to create various heights. Fill ramekins or small bowls with dipping sauces. We used ranch, honey mustard, chik fil a sauces, bbq and ketchup. Begin creating the board by adding in different fry varieties, chicken strips, cheeseburgers and any other foods you choose.
I cut cheeseburgers and hamburgers up into bite size pieces, making it easy to snack on and allow the girls to eat a little of everything!
I picked up vintage sandwich holders and filled them with colorful mismatched party napkins (found at Geese and Ganders).
After snacking a bit, the girls made their way to Bellevue Square, conveniently located right across the street from Westin. In typical Seattle style, it was pouring down rain, windy and cold.
The only thing Ally requested for her party was a chocolate fountain. It’s funny to me that she wanted this but she had never forgotten the one from her Spa Party a few years back so I made sure to have this one party detail she hoped for. While the girls shopped, I prepped a gigantic CharTREATerie board filled with goodies they could snack on as well as dip into the chocolate fountain.
I used treats from Jenny Cookies Bake Shop (rice krispy treats, classic cookies, cake squares) and filled the rest in with items from Trader Joes. I like to use a variety of plain cookies, salty treats and fruit when I can!
To create Ally’s board, I used the same paper roll and just spread it right down the table. I added a large bowl of popcorn, a round wooden platter and then several small bowls of icing sporadically down the board. Once you have your serving pieces in place, you can start filling it up with goodies!
Ally was right, the chocolate fountain was a hit with her friends. I was really surprised how much they all loved it! They dipped and dipped and dipped!
After plenty of snacks, they started to settle in for the night. Ally is passionate about skincare (that Spa Party was pretty influential after all) so I made sure to include her favorite skin care products, masks and lotions for the girls to indulge in. I loaded up the bathroom with Fresh face creams and masks, scrunchies, lip glosses and all the girlie things.
The girls loved masking and prepping their skin for a night of TikToks and girl talk.
The last treat of the night was a popcorn bar with all the fixings from chocolates, to gummies to licorice. It was an easy to create snack station made by simply bringing a popcorn machine in, filling jars with candy, and letting the girls get creative with their late night snacks.
No pajama party is complete without a pillow fight!
I think these beauties finally hit the hay about 4am, which, I don’t blame them. If I was with twelve of my friends in a presidential suite at the Westin, I’d probably stay up the entire night for fear of wasting a single minute sleeping.
The morning after was a bit rough on just a few hours of sleep, but the best way to start any day is with a buttercream breakfast and if you’re in a hotel on your birthday, that means a buttercream breakfast in bed!
Yes, that is an entire tray made completely of cookies and cake! My team at Jenny Cookies Bake Shop knocked it out of the park with these adorable mini pancake cakes. I’m certain they were the cutest tiny cakes I’d ever seen. I loved the opportunity to be a bit more creative with the desserts for this special occasion.
I hope the girls had a night to remember and Ally felt spoiled and loved. Ally is kind, confident, so very helpful, considerate of others and was born with a heart of gold fourteen years ago. I’m so proud of the girl she is and the friend she chooses to be, not only on her birthday but every single day. She is my biggest pride and greatest joy. I may go over the top for her birthdays every year but it’s a day that only comes around every 365 days where I’m able to celebrate her in a big way. I hope she looks back with sweet memories of her childhood birthdays, no matter what the theme, favor or dessert was, but the love I put into them to make things special for her.
….And I’m certain I never wanted to be 14 years old any more than I did in the moment Ally and her friends were cuddled up in bed eating a stack of buttercream pancakes.
Happy Birthday sweet girl! You are a treasure.
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Photos by Kelly Clare
THIS IS A SPONSORED POST. JENNY COOKIES HAS RECEIVED PAYMENT, TRADE AND/OR PRODUCTS IN EXCHANGE FOR PROMOTING, HOWEVER ALL OPINIONS STATED ARE MY OWN AND I ONLY PROMOTE PRODUCTS/COMPANIES I LOVE.