Children’s parties: How to keep it simple

Edinburgh’s baker extraordinaire, Lesley Stewart, has two teenage children. Where children’s parties are concerned, the owner of The Pastry Section believes less is more.

How old are your kids now?

Oliver is fifteen and Abbey is eighteen. She’s just gone off to university.

Did you go in for big parties with lots of your own bakes?

I think some mums overdo it. They try too hard to make lots of things and actually, kids aren’t that interested. All they want to do is play, be together and dress up. They’re not that fussed about the food!

I wasn’t a big party mum so my kids tended to have a small group of friends and we went and did something fun.

What would you do if you were putting on a party for young children tomorrow?

I would get the kids to make their own ice cream sundaes. So just give everybody a bowl of ice cream and provide lots of bits— sauces, marshmallow, sweets etc. Kids love that. They get to shove on all this stuff and enjoy it. I do think people need to simplify it. You don’t need to go crazy at a kid’s party.

Do you cater for children’s parties?

We get lots of orders for birthday cakes for 1-year-olds. I often think that’s hilarious. A 1-year-old is not interested in cake. But obviously, it’s the mums ordering!