Thursday, March 10, 2011

Western Themed 60th Birthday

On Sunday my Dad turned 60.  My sister and I have been planning since January how we wanted to celebrate the occasion.  Our big gift for him is a trip we are taking in April to Gatlinburg, but we also wanted to throw a little surprise party for him.  Now, my dad is not big on having parties for himself so we kept that in mind and just invited his nephews and our families.  The other big thing to know about my dad is that he loves anything to do with the Old West, cowboys, westerns, John Wayne, etc.  So we knew without a doubt that the party had to be western themed.  I have to say it was kind of a challenge to do a western theme party for a 60 year old.  We obviously didn't want it to look like a party for a three year old.  So some creative thinking and a whole lot of making and baking later we had a great party that my dad really loved.  So checkout the pictures for some great ideas.

Old fashioned coconut cake from scratch.  I used a horse head that I molded out of dark chocolate for the topper.  I'll be posting a recipe for this later this week.

   I made the menu signs in Photoshop.  I used an enamel camping mug as a holder for utensils.

Mini blackberry pies topped with a shortbread cookie crumble.  I used pot pie tins for these and wrapped them up in some twine.  It worked out great because I could just hand them out to guests as they were leaving.

I made some of my sugar cookies, to see a how to click here.  I had the worse time trying to find some western themed cookie cutters locally.  I wish I had thought ahead and ordered some from Bake it Pretty or Layer Cake Shop.  I ended up using a princess pony cutter from Williams and Sonoma and then square and circle cutters.  The square cookies were iced to look like bandannas and the circles were iced in a cow print.  I saved two square cookies to write "howdy" on.   

For the dining room table centerpiece I used a framed wanted poster that I again made in Photoshop.  We took two mason jars and wrapped them in bandanna tissue paper and tied them with twine, they had tea lights inside.  The other two jars were filled with cola gummies and maple nut candies.  The boots and gun are ones that my dad bought for my son when he was born.  We used burlap on all of the tables as a runner.

This was a quick little "no sew" bunting that we came up with.  We used more twine as the base and then just folded bandannas over it.  We used clothes pins to attach pictures of my dad as a kid in his cowboy gear.

The food table had more bandanna goodness along with bottled root beers and a bowl of sheriff badges.

I stumbled across these great mugs at the thrift store and had to get them for the party.  They each have a different picture of a cowboy related item on them. There is also another menu sign created in Photoshop.  The menu consisted of  two kinds of chili with lots of toppings, salad, hot dogs, chips and cornbread.

My sister put together this cute frame with pictures of my dad as a cowboy when he was a kid and currently.

And here is the birthday guy himself.  His only complaint about the party was that since it was a surprise he didn't know to wear his cowboy gear!


  1. Everything came out really great! I love the individual pies!

  2. Absolutely so cute! I love your theme!

  3. You make everything look so effortless! It looks like a fun party!

  4. Howdy,

    We were looking for ideas for cookies for a western themed VBS and came across your blog. Cute cookies. Liked the idea of just simply writing Howdy!




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