Party planning can be a whirlwind of adventure and fun. It’s something I wouldn’t change for the world!
However, even the most experienced planner can sometimes find themselves out of their depth, especially if there is a tight budget to stick to or you only have a short amount of time to turn a celebration around. Trust me; I’ve been there several times!
It takes time to plan a fabulous party, but the process doesn’t have to be energy draining. With this in mind, I’ve put together five great tips about how you can plan a party with as little stress as possible.
TIP 1: SIMPLIFY YOUR PARTY PLAN
You need to keep things simple when planning a party. Get overwhelmed early on, and you risk becoming burnt-out and fed up with party planning.
Before you begin, create a master to-do list and use it as a guide to highlight all the tasks that need to be completed. If you factor in everything right at the beginning, there is less risk of anything unexpected popping up and stressing you out.
Your list can include things like:
- A list of supplies and ingredients you need to buy
- The budget you need to stick to
- The guest list – including how many adults and how many children
- Any dietary restrictions you need to be aware of
Follow the list and check things off as you go along. There’s something incredibly calming about striking an enormous task off a to-do list!
TIP 2: DELEGATE YOUR RESPONSIBILITIES
Don’t feel like you need to take everything on all by yourself – ask friends and family to lend you a hand.
For example, you could ask a friend to pick up last-minute party supplies on the day while you tidy the house. Play to your friends’ strengths, for example if they are really good at decorating, let them do it. If they can carry out a task in an hour that would take you four… that’s a bonus.
On the day, get a few friends to arrive an hour early to help you set up or stay afterwards to help you clean up. Make a night of it and enjoy a glass of wine together when you are done.
If friends or family members offer to lend you a hand, or bring food, snacks or drinks to the party to help out… definitely take them up on the offer!
TIP 3: RELAX WHEN PLANNING YOUR MEAL
The food and drink is often the focal point of any party, so there is a lot of pressure to get it right. This is especially true if you have guests who are vegan or have food allergies.
Make things easier by cooking food that you have made before. That way you won’t be panicking if a recipe doesn’t turn out the way you expected! Also, try and prepare as much food as possible in advance, so you’re not rushing around on the day.
Always have a little extra food on hand. That way, if any unexpected guests turn up, you won’t be running around trying to find something for them to eat!
Get a friend to help you out with the cooking. If cooking isn’t their strong point, you can set them off on another task, so you have a little extra time in the kitchen.
If you want to make things really simple, why not consider outside catering? Many stores offer food platters that you can pick up on the day of the party, or you can ask a local restaurant or café to put the food together for you. You can pass this food off as your own if you like… I won’t tell anyone!
Finally, offer a buffet and a self-serve beverage station. This way your guests can help themselves to food and drink rather than relying on you to keep them fed and watered.
TIP 4: GET YOUR GUESTS TO CLEAN UP AFTER THEMSELVES
We’ve all been there… you’ve had a lovely party, and it’s time for everyone to go home and go to bed. The only thing is, you can’t sleep as your home has been turned upside down and you have to clean up!
Buying plastic cutlery and cups as well as paper plates and tablecloths will save on washing up after the party. Also, put a garbage can that people can see so guests can throw their trash away rather than leave it out.
TIP 5: STAY RELAXED!
Last, but certainly no means least – keep yourself relaxed! Take some time before the party to chill out and have a nice bubble bath. You can then put on your best party threads and play some funky music to get in the mood before you start welcoming your guests
The host is the one that sets the tone, so practicing a little pre-party self-care will help make for a welcoming atmosphere and make your celebration a memorable experience for everyone.
When you’re at the party, don’t sweat the small stuff! Don’t worry if someone spills a little wine on your carpet or can’t eat any of the food that you have. Take a deep breath, count to ten and enjoy yourself.
If you start to feel stressed out, ask a trusted friend or family member to take over while you go upstairs and chill out for five minutes.
I HOPE THESE TIPS WILL TAKE THE STRESS OUT OF PLANNING A PARTY FOR YOUR FRIENDS AND FAMILY.
THE MOST IMPORTANT THINGS ABOUT ENTERTAINING IS MAKING YOUR GUESTS FEEL WELCOME, CONNECTING WITH EACH OTHER AND HAVING A SENSE OF COMMUNITY. AFTER ALL, PARTIES ARE ALL ABOUT HAVING FUN AT THE END OF THE DAY!