Read these 13 Party Planning Tips tips to make your life smarter, better, faster and wiser. Each tip is approved by our Editors and created by expert writers so great we call them Gurus. LifeTips is the place to go when you need to know about Party tips and hundreds of other topics.
If you are looking for party planning guides, the experts are there for you.
There are many online that are designed to help you through each stage of the party planning process. Do an online search of party Web sites and you'll find guides for budget, guest list, decorations, seating, beverages and even sample timelines for event happenings to keep you on schedule.
There are also books dedicated to perfecting the perfect party, books such as "Clever Party Planning" by Suzeanne Singleton and "Diane Warner's Big Book of Parties: Creative Party Planning for Every Occasion" by, you guessed it, Diane Warner. Check your local book store or online retailer to buy one that you can refer to throughout your entire planning process and then lend to a friend in need when it's her turn.
Whether you are planning a surprise party, theme party, graduation party, baptism, bar mitzvah, holiday party, business party or anniversary party, your first order of business is to invite people. There are three ways -- and endless possibilities within those ways -- in which you can choose to do your invitations. Which way of sending out party invitations suits you best?
1. Electronically. Log on to online invitation sites to send electronic invitations and keep track of who is responding yes or no. You can also send thank you notes through evite once the party is over.
2. If you'd rather send the traditional paper invitation, there are many companies that offer a plethora of designs for any and every party type imaginable.
3. Your other option is to buy some cardstock and get out the glue, scissors and ribbon and make a handcrafted invitation yourself. There are many Web sites online that can help you in the inspiration department.
Keep in mind that your invitation should match your event. If it's a very formal event, then a formal invitation is warranted. If it's casual, then a simple evite may do.
Experts say invitations should be sent out eight weeks in advance or as close to that as you can come. Consider sending "save the date" cards up to three months before your event if you are concerned about guest's calendars booking up (for example, for a summer event).
Include the following information:
If you're at a party and have nothing to say, take a genuine interest in other people. Be a polite listener. Ask tactful questions about things you'd like to know more about. "You can make more friends in two months by becoming interested in other people than you can in two years by trying to get other people interested in you," wrote Dale Carnegie in his 1936 classic, "How to Win Friends & Influence People." Of course, it pays to be up on current events, but learning to make good conversation also hinges on being genuinely interested in others.
Start collecting basic supplies now so you can concentrate on invitations and food for your next party. Watch for sales on these essentials: Ice bucket and tongs, place cards, a cutlery stand, tablecloths, serving platters, cute olive forks and cheese ball servers, bar glasses and wine glasses, extra cutlery, candles, chip-and-dip bowls, a punch bowl, and cloth or paper napkins. Purchase plain, white dinnerware that you can dress up or down for any party. Store all these essentials together to make party-planning a breeze.
As you're trying to decide which party invitations to choose for your upcoming soiree, consider the hot trends in paper at this year's National Stationery Show (NSS). The following are some of the highlights.
You've decided to host the bash at your house and have put a lot of planning into the right foods for your buffet. But don't forget the logistics like crowd control, trash, beverages, and utensils.
Here are some party planning tips when it comes to food, courtesy of The Food Network:
The first thing you need to do to plan a graduation party is decide what type of party you and your graduate want to have. Let your party reflect your graduate and don't be afraid to be different. Options include:
If the party you are planning is very large or you are just lacking the time to plan a party at this point in your life, you might want to consider hiring a professional party planning business for help. These skilled experts know how to handle all facets of your upcoming party and can take the burden off your shoulders.
Here are some tips for hiring a party planning professional:
Party planning involves more than color scheme, food choices and entertainment decisions. If you are serving alcohol, you must also take responsibility for helping your guests get home safely when they leave your event.
Here are some tips for keeping your guests safe on the way home after they've drank a few too many alcoholic beverages at your party:
Party planning includes more than just setting up party decorations and hiring good musicians and caterers. It includes making sure your guests have a way home if they've drank alcohol. Take the time to set up a plan for these individuals, whether it means calling them a taxi, letting them stay overnight or reminding them to designate a driver for the evening.
Stock up now to make your next birthday party easy and fun. A few weeks ahead of time, purchase matching invitations, banners, cups, napkins, plates, and favors. Craft and party stores carry loads of birthday party supplies. One sweet planning perk is that you'll have time to order a cake decorated to match the plates or invitations. Planning and shopping ahead makes party day a snap. So, while it's fresh in your mind, get out pen and paper and make a to-do list for your next birthday party.
There are many ways to cut corners when planning a graduation party. Some reports say families spend an average of $1,200 on graduation parties. With a little research, careful planning, penny-pinching, and these party planning tips, celebrating your graduate's accomplishment doesn't have to put you in the poor house. Here are some tips :
If you are looking for something different to do at your loved one's graduation party this year, check out these fun ideas from party experts:
For graduation party invitations, how about sending little diplomas or an invitation that reads like a final exam or adding a photo or caricature of the graduate inside the invitation.
Themes: if your graduate knows what college he or she is going to attend in the fall, how about decking the walls with that college's pennants, banners or posters. Or use the college colors as part of your color scheme.
Activities: roasting your graduate. Have a People Magazine poster made of your graduate and put it on an easel in the front of the room. Or make a caricature of your graduate and go to a place like Kinko's to create a large poster of it. Then ask guests to tell fun stories about the graduate and his/her years in school. Or have the graduate's best friend prepare some fun "job interview" questions and set up a mock job interview session at the party.
Decorations: honor your graduate by displaying school awards, photos and trophies.
You've heard of destination weddings. Well there are also destination graduation parties. For the family that wants to celebrate their graduate's successes somewhere else, there are packages available that help with the planning. Of course, your guests are going to have to have the desire and funds to travel to your party. You may want to do a quick survey of how many people can actually make the trip before you plan it. Perhaps it will only be close family.
There are banquet halls all over the world that will help you plan a graduation party in their town. They'll help you hire caterers, decide on decorations and help arrange lodging for your family. So if you have the funds to do it and want to experience a family trip with your graduate before he goes off to college or "the real world," there are plenty of ideas and support systems in place to help you.
|Jennifer Mathes, Ph.D.|