Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Popcorn Movie Party Invitation Tutorial

When 11-year-old Christian said he wanted to celebrate his birthday last month with a movie party, we weren't sure what film we would see -- and for that matter, whether we would go to a theater or plan the party at home. So instead of setting my theme to a particular movie, I kept it more general with a popcorn theme. Because whatever the choice, I knew there would be popcorn!

We ultimately decided to host the party at home, which was a much more economical choice. An invitation slipped into a popcorn box card encouraged guests to pop over for Christian's birthday movie night.


I designed a card with party details to slip into the popcorn box and finished off the design with handmade paper popcorn. I looked online for paper popcorn inspiration and could not find any directions. So I played with scrap paper until I figured out my own system for making popcorn, and I have to say, I love it! I am probably more excited than a person has a right to be over this paper popcorn, but it really took Christian's invitations over the top. Find my invitation tutorial below.

Make a Popcorn Box Invitation

1. Purchase cardboard popcorn boxes. I found these at our local Winn-Dixie. I loved the colors, font and scalloped top. You will get two invitations from each box.

2. Cut the popcorn boxes in half along the fold lines. You can cut the bottom off, but I decided to leave it to add a little fullness to the finished invitation.

3. You could present the popcorn box halves as cards, but I wanted the invitation to slide out of the box. To make a pocket for your invitation, run a bead of hot glue along the edge of the card and press to seal. Glue close to the edge to give room for your invitation, but try not to squeeze hot glue to the outside of the card. Set the popcorn box pockets aside while you make the paper popcorn. (Find the invitation template and more details below. Print and cut these before proceeding.)

4. Cut strips of card stock for your paper popcorn. These can vary in width, and the edges do not have to be perfectly straight. I printed the party details on 8.5" x 11" card stock and used the scraps for our popcorn pieces.

5. Fold a paper strip in half lengthwise.

6. With the paper folded, use scissors to round the edge of the strip. Now when you open the paper, you will have a scalloped edge.

7. With the paper unfolded, pinch the strip close to the scalloped edge.

8. Manipulate the paper to make a loop the size of a popcorn puff, and pinch the strip on the other side of the loop.

9. Cut the strip, and round the edge. You can vary this from piece to piece, cutting some with one scallop and some with two. Secure the popcorn piece with a dab of hot glue just inside the pinches on the underside of the puff.

10. Lightly brush a little yellow watercolor paint to "butter" the popcorn pieces. You could also add a light dusting of fine glitter if desired. With the tip of a brown marker, add a kernel to the underside of some of pieces if desired.

11. Slip your invitation into the popcorn box pocket. Hot glue popcorn pieces to the top of the invitation, letting the edges overlap the popcorn box. Glue a final piece of popcorn to the popcorn box to make it look like one spilled over.

12. Hand-deliver your fresh, hot popcorn boxes to invite friends to pop over for a fun movie night!


I designed the template above to fit our popcorn box pockets. I have removed the text so you can use it for your personal invitations. Please do not publish or sell this image. It took me a couple of tries to size this correctly, so print a sample before proceeding to ensure it fits your popcorn box pocket. Party details can continue the movie theme. Find suggested text below.

Pop Over For
(Guest of Honor)’s Birthday
Movie Night

Now Playing:

Showtime: ???
Pizza & Popcorn

(Your Last Name) Cinemas
RSVP ???


This is just a little preview of coming attractions, so I hope you will pop over for Christian's movie party. Stay tuned for a blockbuster post!

I am eager to hear your thoughts about this invitation and hope you can use it to add a fun element to your next birthday party or movie night.

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