I wish I could have been a fly on the wall when Rosa’s little friends went home and unwrapped the layers of surprises and treats from their surprise balls. I just love how they turned out.
Awhile back, I saw this post on Sandra Juto’s blog about a surprise ball she received. I resolved to make them as party favors for Rosa’s party.
(It’s staggering how many things her friend packed into that ball and how round the final shape was – that’s hard. Also, you can see how delicate and elegant hers is, with the many different colored strips of paper.)
I searched around and found this tutorial by Not Martha. At the same time, I went searching for very small, mostly flat treasures to put in the surprise ball. An unexpectedly difficult task. I also searched for a plastic ornament that I could use as the center of the ball (not totally necessary, by the way), and found it at the dollar bin at Michael’s (filled with that bathtub soap/confetti, which I dumped out).
At the center, a kit to make a small butterfly, which I got at the teacher supply store.
Pick whatever colors of crepe paper you like. I used all of these colors in each ball, so not only were the kids unwrapping treasures, they were revealing different colored layers.
Here’s what was in the balls: different kinds of stickers, a bracelet, a little animal eraser, a tiny paint set, the butterfly kit, and not pictured (I added it later), a tiny envelope with a quarter in it.
Right before I was going to make the surprise balls, I came across this tutorial by Skip to My Lou on Alpha + Mom on making a surprise ball ornament for the Christmas tree (awesome idea), and it was the one I ultimately used, minus the ornament part.
It’s an easy tutorial to follow, but I’d recommend one small change: cut the crepe paper strips longer than 36″. Maybe add another 10″ or so. I just liked having them a little longer.
After you get one ball under your belt, you’ll see how easy they are to make. I’d say they take about 15 minutes each, depending on how many little treasures you’re hiding in each ball (i.e. how many layers of crepe paper you need).
Here are some pics from Rosa’s party. It was a very sweet, small, low-key party. We had a lot of fun.
(It’s hard to capture how I decorated with the walls with scenes cut out of construction paper)
Who doesn’t love clementines?
Rosa wanted everyone to have a candle in their cupcake.
The birthday girl is in the plaid dress.
Two other quick crafts we made that are so simple there’s no need to show a tutorial: these ribbon wands (which is now one of my all time favorite, easiest and prettiest crafts to make) and jingle bell necklaces (see Rosa’s necklace?) which I saw on My Paper Crane last week.