So in case you’re late to the party (see what I did there?), this is part 3 of my Party Series here on the blog. If you want to catch up, please check out part 1 here and part 2 over here 😉 Adam is turning 2 in 2 short days!! 2 days! I can’t believe it! I recall telling my husband, we just need to make it to the 2yr mark, and then life will be back to ‘normal’. Whatever I thought normal was I guess, but I’m starting to think that 2 or not, this is our new normal. That however, is another post for another day…..
Today I feature a very special somebody, Adam’s aunty ‘Be-be’, or as we like to call her by her adult, non-toddler name, Vannah. If you’re clever, you would have guessed that would make her either my sister or my sister-in-law, and if you guessed ‘sister’…well then you’d be right, but sorry I have no prize for you. Okay, well maybe at the end of the series, but you’d have to keep reading through these posts every week to get to that point 🙂
Vannah has always had a love and passion for party planning, and especially planning on a budget. She is the thorn in my ass when it comes to asking me about a budget for my parties. When she starts with telling me how much cheaper her way is and she can do the decor herself, and and and….I usually just want to hit her with a brick. In the face. Well I’ll do that after she finishes with the decor that I need her to make for me. lol. I’m very excited to feature my best friend, my sister and planner to the budgeteers (totally just made that word up) who shares some of her top tips for planning your party 😉
Q: Tell me a bit about yourself. Kids? Married? Working? (Because I obviously have NO idea about any of this)
So I am a 28-year-old accounting administrator at Lear Corporation. I have been married to my (very own personal) chef husband for almost four years now. We have a little boy that makes me feel like the most amazing mommy in the world, most days. He also occasionally makes me believe that he might be half monster (not the cool vampire/werewolf/hybrid kind but the actual, “I’m terrified, where can I hide away and take a nap” kind) On the bright side he is cute, which makes up for his naughty terrorist stubbornness. #MomLife nothing short of an adventure!
Q: You have a clear flair for planning parties, where does it come from? Was there any event or party that you’d seen that sparked that passion for you?
I wouldn’t say that was any specific event that sparked it, I think it may just be two very simple aspects;
1. Budget – I hate spending money on things I can do/get for less. I’m a self-proclaimed bargain hunter (I think the kids today call it ‘thrifty’? In that case, I am THE thrifty Queen)
2. I love DIY’ing, I mean how often do you get to do something really pretty or cute and sit back and look at it (albeit at 2am in the morning) and think you did all that, yourself? (besides when I’m looking at my kid at 2am that just kicked me? Never )
Q: What are your favourite types of parties to plan?
Definitely kids parties!!! Options are limitless, colours are fun and vibrant and kids don’t critique that hard, so they are a lot easier to please. LOL
Q: What’s important to you when choosing a theme for any of your parties?
Never plan on using on solid color with whichever theme you decide to use, using different shades is always a win. The perfectionist inside me goes crazy when I can’t find matching serviettes, cups, plates and bags. It will always be at that point (of me standing in a party shop with all slightly different shaded items wanting to pull my hair out) that I abort specific colour matching, so if you a perfectionist, save yourself the heart palpitations and just mix it up!
Q: What are your top tips for planning a party?
I really feel like I should just say “DIY 5 times” LOL however if I must break the DIY’ing down….
DIY– Do yourself a favour and google free printables, you will almost always find a lot of free stuff in the theme you are looking for! Everything from invitations to party games. Sometimes they will have a complete template pack to download. For the more creative types that would like to personalize their décor, you can download blank templates for 90% of the décor and make it your own by personalizing it to fit your needs.
Google is your best friend. Google tutorials for any and everything. I’ve made tissue pom poms, fans and cardboard flowers. It’s great for adding an extra lil something on a budget.
Utilize everything. For example if you are doing a candy buffet, lay the empty themed bags/boxes (or whatever you are giving guests to pack their favors in) on the buffet table. It will take up space and fill in blank spots on your table. It adds to your “theme”, and you’ll have to buy less sweets.
Plan in advance– If your child is undecided about their theme, start making/buying neutral coloured items that you would be able to reuse for various themes in the future. We had these paper fans that I’m pretty sure we used 4 times in two years. Examples include bunting, fans, or multicolored backdrops.
Always think ‘universal décor’ that you can customize. eg buy plain bunting and just print the message you want to use, prestick/double side tape it on, and you can take it off and use it for the next event.
Q: What’s your pet peeve when it comes to anything to do with party planning?
People not RSVP’ing is pretty high on the list, HOWEVER I would have to say an over involved client/friend. If you have a vision, I want to see it with you and I want you to have everything you are imagining.
I literally try my best to make anything you want and because I’m a perfectionist ( Simone can confirm this especially when its 2 o clock in the morning and I’m still at her place trying to build a floating cardboard house for an UP themed party and she literally has to kick me out.) I would never give you something I personally don’t think is perfect, so trust me to do it for you.
Also you don’t need everything, sometimes less really is more!
My parting advice to moms: remember what the focus should be on. A child won’t know how much money you spent or how much thought went into every single detail. They will however remember all the fun they had, all the sweets they ate and all the happiness they felt.
If any PE moms want to get in touch with ‘The Thrify Queen’ for any help or advice, you’re welcome to email her on firstname.lastname@example.org.