Party Like a Panda Themed Birthday Party Ideas
August 14, 2019

Help save the pandas with a panda birthday donation party

Party Like a Panda Birthday Ideas

My baby turned FOUR this year and I can't believe it. His birthday request this year occurred while hugging his stuffed panda bear in bed one night. It would be all things panda. A little research was in order to find out how to party like a panda so I could make all his 4 year old dreams come true!

PARTY CAUSE: World Wildlife Fund – Preserve Panda Habitat

Party Like a Panda and donate to the WWF

Turns out pandas have had it rough the last few decades. Their habitat is being destroyed at an alarming rate. The big problem with that, is that giant pandas ONLY live in a certain region of China. And basically only eat bamboo. All. Day. Long. They are losing their numbers and only 1800 Giant Pandas currently exist in the wild. WHAT!? That number is not very big. Not big at all. So we decided to do something about it.

Instead of gifts my son asked everyone to donate to Panda Nation at the World Wildlife Fund. As a four year old, I'm not sure he really understands but he knows he has everything he needs. We've requested “no gifts” for years so we might as well use the opportunity to make a positive impact on something that matters to our children. Like his sister who donated her Puppy Themed Birthday Party to benefit dogs at the Humane Society of Utah.

Party Like a Panda Invitation

It's Pandamonium let's party like a panda invitation

You've got to let people know what to expect at your event. And for a bundle of energy like mine it's basically PANDAmonium all the time! So why not invite 'em over to join the fray!? This printable invite is available in the SHOP with the bamboo back pattern and printable envelope insert. I'm a big fan of invitations I can hold, but digital invites, like Paperless Post, make it super easy to send extra information, live links, or even wish lists.

And just because you're doing good doesn't mean you can't have fun! I even created a file for the front of the envelopes. When the guest list is small you can add a few extras without making yourself {too} crazy!

Panda Party Inspiration 

Giant plush panda as decor on mantel for panda party

Turns out it's not hard to make magic when you know where to look! I found this giant plush panda at Savers, my favorite for profit thrift store, and the game was on.

Color Scheme: Black, White, and Green

Panda Party Plates

Party Like a Panda with panda plates, cups, chopsticks, and take out boxes

My next stop was to Meri Meri, a favorite party supply company. They always have the best designs, and never any licensed characters. These panda plates do not disappoint. However, they are petit, so plan on them for a dessert plate. Which allows you to have TWO plate options.

Layering is a great way to add texture and depth to your table. Plus these palm leaf plates are perfect for a meal, look like dried bamboo and are even compostable. That's a win-win-win. And there's no earthy taste left on your food. {I was a little worried!}

Panda Party Cups

And oh my word these panda bear cups are seriously cute. You have to attach the face to the cups but it's as simple as peeling the backing and pressing them on. And a cup is never fully dressed without a darling straw. But don't worry, these paper bamboo straws are biodegradable so they won't be killing fish any time soon.

Party Like a Panda Tablescape

Once you have a few key pieces identified, the rest seems to come together. Ask yourself a few questions about your theme:

  • What do you know about pandas? Live in China.
  • What does a panda bear eat? Bamboo.

You now have a couple important directions to take your decor. We showed them where China is on the other side of the world and served an Asian inspired menu with “helper” chopsticks.

Using stalks of curly bamboo in clear vases with black and white rocks is the perfect affordable centerpiece. It's so fun to discuss panda facts and give the kids an opportunity to see and touch real bamboo.

Party Like a Panda tablescape from top

The wooden utensils are another opportunity to add a little texture. Plain forks and spoons come to life with a little coordinating washi tape. Why not make them different? I loved how the polka dots napkins and spoons broke up some hard lines.

Finished tablescape to Party Like a Panda

The bamboo mat table runner is also available in the SHOP. I love how it pulled everything together. The cut paper monstera leaves may not be Chinese natives but the little bit of green grounds the place setting and flows into the runner.

Panda Party Favors

A Chinese take-out box was pretty much a given for this party favor. The funny thing about that is they aren't Chinese natives either! They were invented in 1894 by a man in Chicago! What!? I know. Blew my mind too!

But it's a great way to thank guests for coming and making the party “pandtastic”! We saved these empty boxes for guests to fill with their piñata loot at party's end.

Save The Pandas Favor Table

Party Like a Panda favor table with plush panda bears

And because party favors are my favorite, I always go a little overboard. But these babies are super affordable from IKEA and made the perfect parting gift. Another reason to keep the guest list small….you can afford to really make it fun!

Custom Panda Favor Bag

We took the opportunity to educate the kids on their favor bags with a little info on pandas. We talked about why they are disappearing and how awesome it was that they were doing something to help these bears.

All humans want to feel significant, but imagine as a 3 or 4 year old with zero power having the ability to make a difference in the wider world. It's an incredible thing to watch as the lightbulbs go off. They are so proud, and it was so easy to make that impact.

Plush panda bears as panda party favors

After leaning about the pandas they each got to choose their own special friend to take home and care for.

You can't have a favor table without a mini banner! At least I've grown dependent. It feels naked without it and ties in the mantel banner quite nicely. Mini banner is part of the Party Like a Panda Package in the SHOP.

Panda Party Mantel Decor 

You already met the star of the mantel, our oversized panda friend. This mantel looks nice and full but when I break it down there are really only a few elements.

  • Focal point: It's pandamonium backdrop sign, editable
  • Left filler: Large plush panda holding “bamboo shoots”
  • Right filler #1: “Let's Party Like a Panda” graphic
  • Right filler #2: DIY Pool noodle bamboo
  • Frame it out: Our ubiquitous summer floral arrangements frame the design on either side
  • Add weight to the bottom with a printable banner
  • Final details: Dollar store bamboo chimes made the perfect end weights

Panda Party Printables

It's PANDAmonium backdrop poster to party like a panda

This backdrop graphic is 20×30 but you can contact me for larger sizes as well. The name and age are editable and it makes a fabulous focal point.

The Happy Birthday Banner is also editable so it can say whatever phrase you desire. How about “Save the Pandas”? All patterns coordinate through the Party Like a Panda package and invitation so your party feels put together without a lot of stress on your part!

Let's party like a panda graphic on mantel

This 8×10 “Let's Party Like a Panda” graphic is layered over the top of a pattern page. Print the patterns on an 11×17 sheet and fit to page. That'll give you a little more pattern to work with. I cheat and tape my graphics to the top of the frames. No glare from the glass in my photos and it's way easier to change them out!

Pin it for Later

Fun & simple party like a panda birthday ideas

I hope you enjoyed our panda party and that it gave you a few ideas for your own party planning.

Interested in hosting a donation party? The great news is that it's easy to party like a panda! You can pledge your birthday or family party to Panda Nation as well at the World Wildlife Fund. A word of warning however, once you know you can DO GOOD while HAVING FUN, your children may never be the same!

Wondering about the benefits of giving? So was I. You can find out what I've discovered here. {coming soon}

Additional Panda Party Reading 

Until next time my friend,


  1. Jennifer Digiacomo

    I truly love everything about this party my friend! I had never thought of doing a Panda Party but now I really want to! It’s such an adorable way to raise awareness to an important issue! Thank you so much for putting this together!

  2. Nathalie - Press Print Party!

    I love that invite! Great job on all the work that goes into it! Every detail has been thought of. Beautiful. And I agree, my kids don’t need any more toys either…

  3. Holly

    A great theme and a great cause! I especially love those centerpieces!

  4. Elise Laney

    Adorable! I love the panda theme and that the party supports such a great cause.

  5. Jackie

    Great decor and I’m a huge fan of picking an organization to support if you can! Totally agree at that age they don’t even remember what gifts they get!

  6. Susan SugarPartiesLA

    This is such an adorable theme ! I love your table setting and plates. You always share the cutest ideas.


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Nice To Meet You!

Gingerbread houses in a row as table runner centerpiece for a Christmas Cookie Exchange Party I’m Bri of Parties With A Cause. I’m a mother to three crazy awesome kids, interior designer, & party planning junky. I love reading, globe trotting, and frozen yogurt. And I’m elevating the party experience one cause at a time! Read More

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