We all love to go to a party and have fun right? Going to a party and organising a party though are very different with the later requiring much more organisation and effort. Having said that if you plan early and get organised then who says you can’t have fun too!
Here are 10 tips to consider when organising a party:
- Determine who the party is for and what type of party you are going to have – think about what you are celebrating. Will it be a:
a. birthday party
b. surprise party
c. engagement party
d. good luck party
e. housewarming party
f. and the list goes on ……….
- Will the party have a theme to it – work out if you plan to have a theme or is it just going to be a party. Themes are things like pirate party, fairy party, dress up party, 80’s costume party and so on. Themes can also be incorporated around colours or ideas as well.
- Work out what your budget will be – It is very important to do this first up so that you have a framework to work with and know what your upper limits are rather than just spending and realising you have spent way more than you planned. In your budget you need to consider things like food, drink, decorations, venue hire, music or other entertainment ie face painter or other entertainment for a child’s party.
- When will you have the party– the very next thing is to work out when you will have the party so determine the date, time and the location. Make sure you allow yourself enough lead time in order to send out invitations and for people to be able to be free to attend. Usually anywhere from 4-8 weeks is a great lead-time though depends upon the type of party you are having too and who you’d like to attend for sure (see next point).
- Who are you planning to invite – do you have a guest list in mind? Working out a guest list can be a little tricky and many people want to make sure they don’t leave someone out. Therefore with your budget and venue in mind think about how many people you can and then plan to invite. Once you have this start working though and putting together a guest list. It can be a good idea to do a first draft and then sit with it for a few days or get someone else to take a look to ensure you haven’t forgotten anyone. If the party is for someone else make sure you involve them in this stage.
- Sent out invitations – before you can do this you need to work out what sort of invitations you will use – will they be paper, via phone, text or email or even something you can do using social media? Once you have the format you can put together the invitation (or purchase them to use if you haven’t already). Remember to include all the important details, as well as an RSVP date and who to, so you have an idea of final numbers for catering and other purposes.
- Confirm any necessary arrangements and make any payments – if you have made a booking to use another venue or another form of entertainment then it might be useful to confirm the booking details if you haven’t received formal notification. Likewise if you have organised any catering or entertainers then confirm the booking for them and where necessary pay any deposits you need to secure the bookings. Make a note in your diary to confirm any final details at least a week before too.
- If you are self-catering or hosting the party at home – determine what supplies you will need, make a list and go shopping. Remember to ensure you have budgeted for all these items and if not update your budget before you go shopping. Naturally many things, other than food, can be purchased well prior to the date so get started early. You can leave any food items closer to the party date. This will take the pressure off, as the party gets closer. It might even be useful to put together a bit of a plan/timeline for prior and during the party at this stage too.
- Set up – at least a week prior to the party review all of the above to ensure you have done everything you need, including any confirmations, and are on track. Much better to do early so if you have forgotten something you have time to arrange or purchase rather than realising this on the day of the party. If you are hosting your own party then make sure you allow plenty of time to set up on the day. Enlist the help of others so you don’t have to do it all yourself.
- Clean up plans – most people don’t like this stage so it is useful to think about this prior to the event rather than just having to deal with it all at the end. Having a plan in place will make it so much easier too! It really is a good idea to clean up the party as soon as it’s over – I know it isn’t the most desirable thought if it is a party late at night, but it usually is better than the smell of stale food and alcohol – so even if you’re not going to do all of your cleaning after the party, do at least remove the food and drink and basic rubbish.
Ask yourself questions like:
- What can I do to make cleaning up easier? ie have rubbish and recycling bins around so people can assist with this at the time. Even consider using disposable cups and plates to save on washing up.Are there items that need to be returned and what time by?
- What needs to be cleaned up and put away? Think about whether you will do this on the day or the next day. If you have hired a venue will they do all the cleaning up or is this something you need to factor in?
- What are you likely to use again ie decorations and then find somewhere to store these items until next time.
- Maybe you won’t use decorations again but one of your friend’s might be able to.
- Or if the decorations are in good condition and you don’t plan to use them why not donate them as someone else might get use out of them.
Also one final point, though it doesn’t really relate to cleaning up, is to have a think about whether you would like to send thank you messages to anyone who helped you or gave presents after the party.
Enjoy the party and have fun!
If you need a hand or more advice please get in touch!