Have you ever seen an everyday item transformed into something way cooler, and uttered the phrase, “Why didn’t I think of that?” We pulled together party hacks that revamp the ordinary with a little creativity.

Beach Pail

Place colorful pails in a row filled with party favors for kids to choose for their personalized gift bag.

Fill with craft supplies for each child to use for a party craft.

Use as the target for a bean bag toss.

Fill with snacks for each child. Use the shovel to scoop out snacks.

Character-Theme Hack

Are your kids obsessed with Moana or Minions, but you don’t want to spend the cash for themed party supplies? This hack may help. Purchase packs of stickers from your child’s favorite characters and stick them on plain cups or blown-up balloons for instant decoration. Also include stickers in goodie bags, or hand out as guests arrive.

An Easy Tablecloth

A colorful fitted twin sheet makes for a great tablecloth, which can be easily thrown into the wash after the party and used next year. Also, if your party happens to be outside, you avoid the flimsy, plastic tablecloths blowing away in the wind.

Cookie-Cutter Stencils

Use cookie cutters in the shape of numbers to add decoration to a plain cake. Place the number on top of the cake and pour sprinkles around it. Lift up the cookie cutter to reveal the birthday child’s age.

Ice Cream Serving Made Easy

Skip the hassle and mess of serving ice cream out of the container. Put scoops of ice cream into a muffin tin (cupcake liners help with easy serving) freeze and hand out individual scoops with cake.

Simple Balloon Drop

Kids will be screaming with delight when bright balloons fall over their heads. Purchase a plastic, rectangular tablecloth and cut it in half. Hole punch along either side where you cut it and weave yarn through the holes. Tape the extra yarn and sides of the tablecloth to the ceiling with painter’s tape. Blow up balloons and place between tablecloth and ceiling. When the time comes, pull the piece of yarn to release the tablecloth and balloons.

Plastic Pool

Fill with mud and water and hidden “gems” or “gold,” to make it a perfect site for panning for treasures.

Fill with plastic balls, and you get a fun ball pit for toddlers.

Fill with sand, it’s perfect for a dinosaur bone dig, a search for hidden plastic critters or party favors.

Fill with water balloons, and you have the basis for an epic balloon fight.

Fill with bubble solution, and kids can use a small hula hoop to create giant bubbles.

Fill with ice, you can keep drinks or snacks cold for outdoor parties.

Glow Sticks

Fill empty water bottles with glow sticks, turn off the lights and bowl in the dark.

Stick inside balloons for a colorful party decoration.

Pop open the glow sticks and pour into bubble solution for glow-in-the-dark bubbles.

Use circular-shaped glow sticks and play ring toss around a post.

Birthday Cake Kabobs

Avoid having to cut cake with these make-ahead cake kabobs. Simply bake (or buy) and slice a plain sheet cake (flavor of your choice) and then cut into cubes. Slide the cubes onto skewers and layer with fruit or frosting. Drizzle with melted icing and top with sprinkles if you desire. Slide a mini cupcake liner onto the bottom of the stack to catch the mess. Chill in refrigerator before serving.

Visit the Dollar Store

Endless supplies for a party – plastic tablecloths, small toys for favors, party hats, leis, gift bags, cups, plates and plastic utensils, balloons, bubble, garlands, candles, cupcake holders, face paint, craft supplies, you name it.

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