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12 details for throwing the best Pirate Party ever

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Ooh-argh! Do you have a little pirate in your house? You can throw a pirate party for boys or a pirate party for girls – it’s the kind of theme that works for both. It was hugely popular with my daughter and all her friends for her 4th birthday party.

Here are 12 fun details that you can make or design to throw an awesome pirate party.

1. PIRATE WATERMELON BOATS: This is surprisingly easy to make. The hardest part is diving in to make the first cut. All you need is a large watermelon, a Lego pirate set, some twine, barbecue skewers, a long thin carrot, a melon baller, and fruit to fill the boat.

pirate ship made out of watermelon

2. PAPER PARTY BAGS WITH PERSONALISED STICKER & TAG: It’s much for fun to create your own party bags than buy them off the shelf. The party bags were purchased on eBay, with the tissue paper included, but you can also buy bags at The Curious Caterpillar. I made the tags, printed them out, and cut them out during many episodes of The Good Wife. And the stickers I designed in InDesign and then printed at If you don’t know how to use InDesign and Photoshop, you must know someone who does. Or alternatively, pay a designer for an hour of their time to knock up some artwork for you. You can get the skull and boat vector graphics from Shutterstock.

red and white striped goody bags with tags

3. OREO TREASURE: Buy Oreos (double stuff version is best) and spray with gold sugar spray, available in Sainsburys.

oreos painted golden

4. CHOOSE ACCESSORIES IN YOUR COLOUR SCHEME: There is no shortage of party shops online. Party Delights has a really good selection – that’s where I bought my plates etc. You can also check out French-based company, My Little Day, for some more quirky offerings.

colour theme pirate party

5. BUIlD A TREASURE CHEST FROM CARDBOARD: This was daddy’s job. He found some instructions on the internet and away he went. He was very proud of his red tissue paper lining. To add some authenticity, we bought a vintage fisherman’s net off eBay and threw some pirate coins into it.

cardboard treasure chest

6. SEA WATER: Easy to do and effective. We used the kid-sized water from Sainsburys and then replaced the label.

pirate water bottles

7. FISH ‘N’ CHIPS: Get it?! All you need to do is download a pirate treasure map from Shutterstock, buy Pepperidge Farm Goldfish Crackers from Partridges online, and mix them with your favourite brand of crisp (or chips as we Yankees say). The pirate suitcases came in a nested set of three from Amazon.

fish and chips pirate party

8. MAKE PIRATE SIGNS: You can easily do this in Microsoft Word if you don’t have a design programme. You can also download pirate-style fonts from free sites like Even the skull was from a font. Get a nice little frame from M&S and ahoy, matey.

pirate party signs

9. GET A PRO TO MAKE A GREAT CAKE: I know where my talents lie and cake-making is not one of them. Every year, Cakes by Robin does Baby’s cake and they just keep getting better and better. Her chocolate sponge is to die for.

cakes by robin southfields

10. PUT UP A PHOTO BACKDROP: This piece of map fabric made a great background for photographs of the little pirates. There are loads of good ideas on my Pinterest board for this.

pirate party backdrop

11. DECORATE YOUR STRAWS: The devil is in the details and paper straws are all the rage. These little tags are easy to do and a lot of fun.

red and white striped paper straws with ARGH on them

12. MAKE A BOAT GARLAND: I was particularly proud of this idea. All you need is some newspaper, some off-white card, barbecue skewers and coloured paper for the flags, as well as some twine. You can write the letters of your child’s name on the sails.

paper boat garland handmade


Pinatas are always a big hit. No pun intended. And remember to hire a professional family photographer like Boggio Studios to capture all your details and action for you, as you’ll be too busy having fun!

pirate party pinata