DIY Unicorn Smash Cake Banner



One year old birthday parties are another one of those parties people tend to go all out for. It’s insane how much effort goes into celebrating someone who wont remember anything about that special day. As parents, we know it, yet we still do it. I think we are just celebrating surviving a full year.

We send out invitations, spend a ridiculous amount on decorations and balloons, and we invite people our poor baby may not even know. Some of us even go the extra length to get professional photos done of our little monsters annihilating a cake.

Instagram is full of them. The extremely popular “smash” cake. It’s adorable, it’s extremely messy, and the intense sugar rush is so worth the memories. Even if we did spend a fortune on the photos. Who cares!

For the parents who fall in the middle of it’s not worth it, and let’s go all out. The parents who would like to celebrate just a little, with a few decorations and close family. Who would like to enjoy the adorable experience of the smash cake without spending a fortune. For those parents, there’s always the option of the DIY, (Do It Yourself).

All you need is a homemade banner and that trusty cell phone to capture all those cute adorable and messy memories.

Copyright 2019 Messy Mama

What you’ll need:

  • Flat Sheet
  • Party Banner
  • Unicorn Printouts or other printouts from the internet (if you are feeling crafty, you could always draw them yourself.)
  • LED Light Strings
  • Markers
  • Clips
  • Cardboard
  • Yarn
  • Cotton Balls
  • Empty Boxes / Gift Bags
  • Old Candle Glass
  • Wrapping Paper
  • Wall Hooks
  • File Folders
  • Fabric Tape
  • Glue and Hot Glue

A majority of these materials I found laying around the house. Don’t feel obligated to this list. If you can get creative by recycling old material, do that!

Step One

Flat Sheet – If there’s an old sheet gathering dust in a cupboard somewhere, use that. I used a double bed sized sheet.

1. Start by taking a picture of the area you plan to hang the sheet to get a general idea of the “photo” space you are going to have.  This will help you piece together the banner.


2. Use adhesive wall hooks so the clean up process wont leave your walls a mess. I used four hooks across my “Photo space” area, with the width of my sheet.


3. Next, sit your little one down in his/her designated spot to get an idea of the area they will be sitting. This way you can build the banner around him/her. Set a marker where the top of their head would be. (I used a hair clip as a marker.)



Afterwords. Set up the floor area with any potential props you may wont to use. This will help you determine where to place the cutouts on the backdrop.



Step Two

Unicorn Cutouts – You could scorn the internet for some super adorable Unicorn drawings that you can use. I found this Unicorn at


1. Trace the Unicorn with black permanent marker so the marker seeps through to the back. You may want to do this over more paper so the marker doesn’t get on the table or crafting area.

Flip the unicorn over and trace the other side. This creates a tracing tool with the unicorn facing both ways.


2. Using plain white paper or computer paper, trace as many unicorns as you desire for your Smash Cake Banner.

3. Color the Unicorns and cut around them and the stars. Place each piece onto a file folder. Cut the unicorn and the stars out.


Step Three

The Rainbow – You can purchase a piece of cardboard at a craft store, or you can utilize any cardboard you have around the house. You can make the rainbow any size you want and any color you want.

I used an old pizza box. (A good excuse for some take out?)

You can buy separate colors of yarn and create a traditional colored rainbow or you can save money by settling for a multi-colored yarn ravel. I was lucky enough to score this gem.


1. Determine the width of your rainbow and draw it out on the cardboard.

2. Using glue, draw one thin line across the length of the rainbow.

3. Starting with a single piece, glue the yarn string across the rainbow. Cut and repeat until you find a thickness you are satisfied with. Allow a small fragment of the string to hang freely, unglued on both ends of the rainbow.


4. Take the cotton balls and stretch them out a bit to create a flat oval like shape.


5. Glue the cotton balls to both end of the rainbow.


5. Allow the excess strings to hang over the cotton balls.


6. Cut out your rainbow


Step Four

The Props – You can utilize any old boxes or gift boxes for this.

1. Gather all those old, almost gone, scent candles and put them to good use.


2. Glue the bottom of the candles and stick them to the bottom of the boxes or gift bags. This will help the props work as a “paper weight” to keep the banner in place if your little one starts to crawl around.


3. Wrap the boxes and decorate them however you choose.

Shove some tissue paper into the gift bag.


Step Five

Putting It All Together – This is how I set up my little ones banner. If your creative and have a different idea in mind, go wild. If you have a more innovative way of attaching/placing the pieces, put that brain to work. For the purpose of not wanting to glue anything to the wall, I utilized fabric tape, yarn string, and a tiny bit of craft glue.

1.Mark where you want to place the rainbow.


Here’s where it gets a little complicated. If you find an easier way to get the rainbow attached to the sheet, go ahead and try it a different way.

2. Tape a double looped piece of yarn with fabric tap. Cross over the original piece with another piece of fabric tap. to prevent the tape from sticking right away, leave the second piece of tap covered until you tie the string.


4. Clip the bottom of the rainbow onto the sheet. (You may have to take the sheet down. I used the same hair clips from the head marker.) Flip the rainbow over with the sheet side up.


5. With the sheet clipped in place, cut holes where the tape and string are, pull the string through and tare off the tape cover. Press the sheet against the tape.


6. Tie the string, securing the rainbow in place.


7. Get a celebration banner, happy birthday banner, or a cute saying banner. I found this adorable “You Are Magical,” banner. Hang the sheet back up on the hooks and hang the banner across the hooks.


8. Place fabric tape across the back of the unicorn stick them to the sheet. Craft glue on the back of the stars. Set them up across the banner how you desire.


9. Cut a few slices into the flat sheet to pin the LED Light Strings. I used floral hair clips.


10. Enjoy your adorable Unicorn Banner! Feel free to add balloons to give it more of a party vibe.

Copyright 2019 Messy Mama


(This was my very first attempt at a DIY. Please forgive the disorder and confusing jargon)


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*Disclaimer – Statements made in this post are of my own opinions, views and thoughts. I am not a professional and should not be regarded as such.

*This work, along with it’s images, as well as other posts published by Messy Mama, are protected by copyright laws. If you wish to create your own DIY post using this idea, you will need to use your own photos.

Copyright © Messy Mama 2019