Thursday, November 7, 2013

Kids Pirate Party - DIY Photo Invitation

Steps to Create Pirate Invite

Step 1: Get a Picture

Take a head-on picture of your child.  Crop this picture so that it will fill out a 4x6 photo when printed.  Get the photo printed on matte paper so that it does not have the "typical picture" glossy look.  I ordered my pictures from Shutterfly.  Make sure that you order enough (and a few extras) to make all of the invites.
Once the pictures arrive cut out the shape of your child's head.  I found it easier to use an Xacto knife rather than a scissors to cut around some of the tight spots, like by the ears.

Step 2: Create a Mock-Up

This is the most critical step, because it will be the foundation off of which your entire invite is based.  You might need to practice a couple of times until the mock-up is perfect. 
Start by tracing your cut-out picture on the bottom half of a piece of paper (this is necessary because the paper will then be folded).  Be sure to round out the area at the top of the head, as shown in the picture below.  There should be a little bit of paper showing above the child's picture.  Don't worry, this will soon be covered with the pirate hat.
Next, fold the paper in half with the fold at the very top of the hat.  You now need to make a sample of the pirate hat.  Cut the hat so that it fits perfectly over the child's head and has two tassles on the side.  You will need to trace the hat onto the invitation so that when you cut out the practice invite it contains all of the parts (face, hat, tassles).  Next, cut out the mock-up of the invitation.  (Note- you will be cutting through two pieces of paper.)  Make sure that you do not cut the fold off at the top.
FYI - The invite shown below with the picture of the little boy is showing you the very front and very back of the invite.  The inside of the invite is currently face-down.

Step 3: Plan the Invite

FYI - The picture below is showing you the inside of the invite, when it is flipped open.  This is where the details of the party will be written.
Plan what you would like to have written on the invite.  Determine how much space (width and height) is available for the text.  I created the inside of the pirate invitation using Photoshop.  I have a printer that can print on large-sized scrapbook papers, so I was able to print two invites on one piece of paper.  It is critical that you leave enough space around all parts (especially the top) of the written part of the invitation, because you will be cutting the entire shape of the pirate head out of the scrapbook paper.
I chose to use a scrapbook paper that looked natural; kind of like a "brown bag."  I printed two copies on one piece of paper.  Notice below that I left a lot of space above the text so that I could cut out the entire shape of the invitation.

Step 4: Cut-Out the Invitation

Trace the sample invitation overtop of the invitation that you have printed on your final scrapbook paper.  Cut out the shape of your final invitation.  I chose to use an Xacto knife to cut around the tight places, like the ears and hat tassles.  After you finish the cutting it should look similar to the invite shown below.

Fold the invitation.  It should look like the sample below.  You are now ready to make it look like your little pirate!

Step 5: Attach the Little Pirate's Picture

Using double stick tape, attach your child's picture to the front of the folded invitation, as shown below.  
After attaching the picture, you may need to trim any areas of scrapbook paper that were not hidden by the picture (except for the hat area - don't do anything with that just yet).

Step 6: Cut Out Pirate Hats

Pick a scrapbook paper to use for your pirate hats.  I chose red with white polka dots.  The red and white polka dots became a pattern that I used at the party, as well.  Trace the outline of the pirate hat onto the scrapbook paper.  Cut out one and make sure it fits properly on the invitation.  If it is a good fit, cut as many more as you need to complete all of your invitations.

Step 7: Attach Pirate Hat

Attach the pirate hat to the invitation by placing it on top of the picture and scrapbook paper using double stick tape.  It should look like the invitation shown below.

 Step 8: Add Pirate Eye Patch

Practice making a sample eye patch to get the size and shape the way that you want it.  Once you have a good sample, cut out a final eye patch from black cardstock.  Make the "string" of the eye patch wider than the invitation.  Place tiny pieces of double stick tape on the "string" of the eye patch.  (You will not need to tape the patch to the eye.)  Tuck the edges of the "string" under the hat on the left side and the picture on the right side.  The edge of the "string" will then be between the layer of brown scrapbook paper and the hat/picture.  This will give the eye patch a finished look.

The Completed Invite