What advice would you give to someone planning a party?
Planning a party should be fun but somehow it often turns into a nightmare. Recently a friend asked for help planning her wedding and it got me thinking. As someone who used to work in the event industry I know how easy it is to get bogged down in tiny details like the colour of the napkins and forget the big picture – it’s meant to be fun.
So today I’d like to share some tips about how to plan a party and still have the energy to enjoy it!
No matter how much we might wish it otherwise, no-one is an expert at everything. Pick the stuff you’re good at and get some help with the rest.
If you’re not a baker, buy a plain iced cake and decorate it yourself.
Haven’t a clue how to cater for 50? Me neither, pop down to your local deli and get them to make some large platters for you instead.
Not sure where to start with decorations? Read on for some great tips!
1.Pick a theme: (and stick with it!)
Choosing a theme will help you to keep focused during your planning and preparation and make sure you end up with decorations, gifts and food that look like they belong together. We’ve all got a bit of magpie in us and it can be all too easy to add a bit of this gorgeous thing and a bit of that because it’s lovely until you end up with a confused mess and none of the lovely things you’ve chosen end up sparkling like you’d hoped they would.
If you fall in love with an idea or decoration which doesn’t fit in with your theme don’t worry, bookmark it for your NEXT party. You can even make it the reason to have another party ( if you really need an excuse).
Choosing a colour as your theme is a great way to give your party a cohesive look. Stick to one colour or choose something like a rainbow or pastel theme. You’ll still have lots of flexibility in how you interpret the theme and if you choose a colour that’s on trend at the time of your event you’re even more likely to find appropriate items easily.
2.Create a focus point:
Whether it’s a beautiful buffet table, a photo booth back drop or an activity zone, a focal point helps set the tone for the party and creates a wow factor.
3.Decorations with a difference:
In my former life as an event florist I created decorations out of pretty much everything; glowsticks, toy cars, sweets, fruit the list goes on and on.
A few key pieces such as this garland can easily be added to with less conventional items.
Keep an open mind and you’ll be amazed at how much you already have that can be transformed into a decoration.
Take a look at my Rainbow pinterest board to see how a simple pack of balloons can transform a room in next to no time.
4.Let your guests do the work:
One of the best parties my boys have been to involved them making their own party bag and it’s entire contents! The children had a great time, loved their gifts and the very clever mum who organised the party had saved herself a lot of time and hassle. Whether it’s adding toppings to ice cream, mixing their own cocktails or colouring in the table cloth, guests will enjoy the opportunity to get involved.
5.Transform your table:
Any table can be easily transformed with a table cloth and some coloured paper. If you’ve got a long or square table create a line of decoration down the middle of the table.
As long as you’ve got some coloured paper to hand and a pair of scissors you can quickly and easily create this rainbow effect by cutting random triangle shapes and layering the paper onto the table.
Got a hole punch? Create circular confetti and create a graduated stripe running down the centre of the table. (love the idea but haven’t the time – you can buy my rainbow coloured eco friendly confetti here)
If I was using this idea for a circular table I’d place a jar of smarties in the centre of the table and surround it with a circle of the paper triangles/ confetti.
6.Gorgeous Gift Wrap:
Particularly important at children’s parties, it’s always nice to give your guests a gift to take home. Kraft sandwich bags or boxes can easily be transformed with a simple ribbon. I’ve carried my rainbow theme through to the party gifts by using different ribbons for each box but if you’ve got more time take a look at my rainbow pinterest board for more wrapping ideas.
Want further inspiration? Take a look at my rainbow party themed Pinterest Board
Fallen in love with my rainbow elephant garland? You can buy it here
Need to get your hands on some rainbow confetti? Find it here