A Pirate’s Life for Us! {Pirate Party}

Ahoy, me Hearties. What’s better than one adorable birthday pirate? Two adorable birthday pirates! Savvy? (That’s ‘do you agree?’ in Pirate speak for you novice Pirate speakers. J )

Recently, my 3 year-old son and I had the privilege of attending an incredible pirate party put on by two very creative and talented mothers (Vivian Kerr & Lisa Saunders) who realized that the saying ‘two heads are better than one’ definitely applied to party planning!

Be sure to check out the swashbucklin’ good fun enjoyed at this party photographed by Andrea Pasion & styled with Anders Ruff’s Pirate Party Printables or risk an unpleasant trip to Davey Jones’ Locker!

The Invitation: “You Aarrrgggh Invited”

Nothing was more thrilling for my son than discovering two pirates on his doorstep delivering a message in a bottle inviting him to join their birthday pirate crew in search of long lost treasure! The creative invitation & delivery set the stage for an unforgettable event. He could hardly wait to join in celebrating the two scallywags’ 3rd birthdays! I nearly had a mutiny on my hands when I had to tell him for 2 weeks & counting that, ‘no, the pirate party is not today’.
Getting into Character: “Yo Ho, Yo Ho, A Pirate’s Life for Me”

A pirate party wouldn’t be complete without pirates! Costumes are such an easy way to take an ordinary party and kick it up a notch. Each birthday buccaneer received a captain’s hat as well as a personalized pirate t-shirt made by Mouse House Memories! Blow me down if Nathan and Logan aren’t the most adorable pirates to sail the seven seas!

Guest Arrival: “All Hands on Deck”

As the crew members arrived, each pirate received a loot bag (notice the customized AR favor hang tags) containing a bandana, sword, eye patch, and telescope to be used in their quest for more pirate booty during their treasure hunt.

Party Set-up: “Shipshape”

Venturing outside, little pirates were greeted by an amazing display of tables decorated in a pirate-themed color palette of red, white, black & turquoise. A hand designed & sewn Jolly Rogers flag fashioned into a mast served as the focal point of a gorgeous dessert table, accented with colorful themed Anders Ruff pirate printables. The table top, covered in authentic looking pirate paraphernalia such as gold coins, a pirate ship, octopus, pirate hat, sword, fish net, treasure map, and chest, was a magical foreshadowing of all the seafaring adventures to come . In addition to décor, the dessert table housed an array of yummy sweets befitting of the most scurvy pirates. Desserts included red & black licorice, gold-foiled chocolates, fish-in-the-sea Jell-O cups, & yellow & chocolate cupcakes adorned with AR cupcake toppers.

Party Food/Drink: “Pirate Vittles and Ale”

Amazingly enough, little pirates still have big appetites. But, these party-planning mommas were prepared! Their seafaring menu included the perfect combination of kid favorites & matey must-haves. The pint-sized pirate smorgasbord included fish & chips (really chicken sticks & fries), gold fish crackers, Pirate Booty (popcorn) & fruit kabobs. For the seadogs (ahem, ‘older’ pirates), a more mature menu including sandwich rolls, & a shrimp & crab platter were enjoyed. Beverages, including red pirate punch & water were served to the young crew; while the more seasoned sailors enjoyed bottles of Henry Weinhard’s Rootbeer & Black Cherry Soda.

Eating Area: “All Aboard.”

The crew of 12 little pirates came aboard the pirate ship (3 kid-sized picnic tables made by Lisa’s husband & decorated with hand sewn masts designed by Vivian, as well as other fun pirate accents such as fish net, laminated treasure map placemats & gold doubloons). Seated on board they were able to enjoy their pirate grub and plan their plundering. A quick swabbing of the deck followed. (Little pirates also make big messes!)

Games/Activities: “Heave Ho”

After their bellies were filled & they got their sea legs, each pirate was presented with a treasure map to help them in their quest for buried treasure.The crew was split up into groups of three as they ventured to different stations to earn additional pirate loot.

Stations included:

Pirate Ship Ring Toss– They earned their cannonballs (mini pirate beach balls) by participating at this ring toss station.

Walk the Plank– What do you do with a scurvy pirate? Make him walk the plank! Hooks were given once they walked the plank and jumped in the shark infested water (plastic balls).

Pirate Bean Bag Toss– Here they got their very own stuffed parrots after participating in the bean bag toss.

Fishing for Buried Treasure– At this station they fished for buried jewels (inflatable palm tree & pool).

Buried Treasure Hunt– This was the concluding station. Each pirate had 1 attempt to pin the treasure chest at the correct location on the map. This was followed by the discovering of actual buried treasure–a treasure chest full of adorable treat bags filled with edible golden treasure, topped off with Anders Ruff printable treat toppers.

Shiver Me Timbers! These little pirate mateys had so much fun. The party ended with the traditional singing of ‘Happy Birthday’ followed by ice cream cups & cupcakes & personalized mini cakes for the pirate captains. All hands were on deck to watch the opening of the birthday booty for the guests of honor.

You aaarrrr amazing Vivian and Lisa! Thanks for letting us be a part of your incredible event!

Vendor Credits:

Photography – Andrea Pasion Photography

Printables – Anders Ruff Custom Designs

Pirate shirts – Mouse House Memories

Stripey straws, pirate cupcake liners – Hey YoYo

Toy Pirate ship – Amazon

Invitation bottles, games, Goody bag items – US Toy, Oriental Trading

Pirate hats, tablecloths, gift wrap, balloons, inflatable palm tree with cooler – Party City

Sails – JoAnn Fabrics

SOURCES for products to help you create your own Pirate Party:

Red & White Stripes Tablecover Party Accessory
Felt Pirate Eye Patches 1 Dozen
Pirate Flag Picks Party Accessory
Pirate Tattoos Favors 36 per package
Foam Pirate Masks11″ Pirate Skull & Cross Bones Around Balloons
Pirate Bandana- Pirate Party Favor
Piece of Cake Parties Birthday Skull and Crossbones Vinyl Decals
Polyester Pirate Loot Backpacks
Pirate Hook Hand Party Favor
Pirate Telescopes
Pirate Ship Pinata
Pirate inflatable Sword 24 inch
Fisher price Imaginext Black and Red Pirate Ship with 2 Figures
9″ Pirate Dinner Plates (8 Count), Red
Pirate Fun Dessert Plates
Pirate Paper Cups
Treasure Chest Treat Boxes (1 Dozen)
BulkPirate Hats
Plastic Gold Treasure Coins



  1. What a cool idea for a party! I would of eaten most of the treasurers myself, which is why I am not invited to too many kids parties. That and I dont have kids of my own, but when I do, I will be coming to this site for ideas. Amazing write up and fantastic pictures. Guest blogger? Wouldn’t have known, amazing job by all involved.

  2. Absolutely adorable! Those are two very talented Mommies and a fantastic guest post by Jen Carver who happens to be a very talented party designer herself!

  3. Thank you Jen & Anders Ruff for featuring Nathan & Logan’s Pirate Party. AR Pirate Printable were perfect and just made the party even more amazing. Thanks again! Jen, you are amazing writer.

  4. Great party! I am sure that the kids had a great time! I love the description of the party, an inspiring post. I wish this type of party was around when I was a kid.

  5. I LOVE THIS! How creative & every detail is so special. I love how adorable the invitations are. What a great party!

  6. Very well thought-out party, especially to entertain and manage 12 little ones!

    Between the printables and amazing designing/planning by the mommies, you don’t seem to be in a backyard at all!

  7. Did you design the map for the activities? If not, where could I print it? I need that for our party! SO CUTE!

    1. Sorry! We did not design that 🙁 Let us know if you’d like a custom design done for you, though. If the timing of your party works with our schedule, we could probably design something like this. Thanks! email us at heidi@andersruff.com

  8. Any idea where I can get the inflatable pirate ship ring toss?
    I can’t seem to find it anywhere. I checked oriental trading, it seems it’s sold out every place I check.

    1. Hi Taylor~

      Vivian borrowed the inflatable pirate ship ring toss from me. I purchased it from Party City about 5 years ago, but have seen it for sale there recently. Good luck!

    1. Hi there! We do have it available and you can email us to order (sales@andersruff.com) Thanks!

  9. Who printed your invites? Looking todo something like this for my son’s 3rd birthday but can’t seem to find a good invite that can be rolled.

    1. Vivian printed them from her home computer. Many companies such as Office Depot, Staples, etc… offer several different varieties/weights/thicknesses of paper.

  10. Hi, I love this party! Did you design the labels on the invitation bottles? I would love to know where to get them.


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