Shipwrecked Party!

Shipwrecked Party!

Make believe that you’ve all been washed up on foreign shores with a shipwrecked party, the perfect theme for a warm summer’s evening. Send out your messages in bottles and gather friends and family for pirate jigs, plenty of grog and treasure hunts.

You’re planning a big summer knees-up with the family; the trouble is, you can’t decide on the theme. Your son wants a pirate party, your daughter loves Tinkerbell and you’re keen to pretend you’re on a tropical beach. The solution: please them all and create your own Neverland island paradise at home with a family shipwrecked party. To please all ages, combine popular kids themes with adult ones, such as Jake and the Neverland Pirates and Pirate, or Hawaiian and Hawaiian Luau.


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Send out homemade party invitations, perhaps photocopies of a map you have drawn with X marking the spot for the festivities. Age the paper using a wet teabag and tear the edges to make it look worn. If you are hand delivering, roll invites into scrolls and tie before putting through the letterbox (or into an empty milk bottle on the doorstep, should one be handy!) If you don’t have time, buy invitations instead.

Plan your family’s outfits – this is too good an opportunity to miss for fancy dress and we’ve loads of kids’ outfits to choose from, from pirates and wenches to mermaids and fairies, as well as plenty of accessories such as hooks and eye-patches for adults. Add extra eyeliner for the Jack Sparrow adult pirate look! Alternatively, go down the Hawaiian hula route with flower print shirts, flower leis and grass skirts.


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If you’re holding the party outside, make use of the kids’ climbing frame as pirate ship’s rigging and hoist a Jolly Roger above it. The odd lantern candle holder hanging from trees and a hammock or two will give a makeshift camp effect to the scene. Hang flag bunting and strings of tiki lantern garlands between trees or along the fence. If you’ve got bits of old rope, or a barrel or two, put these around the place. Beach and palm tree scene setters will transport you to that tropical desert island… Hanging fish, shells and other underwater decorations will make little mermaids feel at home.

Set up a buffet table for your party catering – you’re doing this in relaxed island fashion after all. Add a Hawaiian style fringe to the table edge and serve punch in coconut cups as the barbecue sizzles away. For kids, you could serve party food picnic style, in treasure-chest boxes to fit the theme. Designate their very own area of beach by laying out blankets and cushions. Here are some of our ideas for pirate party food.

Desert island party activities should include a treasure hunt, games of tag, relay races, water games for the kids and of course, an all-ages limbo competition! Check out more ideas for pirate party fun and games here. Hang up a treasure chest piñata for a fun finale for the youngest ones, and fill with sweet treasure ‘treats’ such as candy jewellery and chocolate pieces of eight. Choose from lots of different themed party bags for them to take home.


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