I am organising a surprise birthday party for my ‘better half’ this weekend and its going to be quite a BIGGY, a milestone you cannot ignore. How do you invite all the people, have all the fun and entertainment, without breaking the bank?

These are few easy steps to follow, that will get you through most rip roaring of situations.

Gift giving:
Whenever there is a Birthday party, the guest’s always ask the host, what they should get for a birthday present. So think of an idea, that you know your sweetheart will love, and ask your guests to contribute to the gift, the more guests that contribute, the smaller the contribution. The quality of the gift will be much better and it will be exactly what they want.

There are many ways to tackle this situation
, but generally, delegation is the way to go. Guests normally offer to bring something to a party, so plan your menu before hand and assign an inexpensive menu item for each guest to bring e.g. bread rolls, crisps or dessert etc. each small contribution adds up to a massive saving.

There are many DIY budget decoration ideas that can be used, the resources are endless. The following ideas, I have used and have always had positive results-

  • Brown paper bag, garden candles:
    Lighting always adds a magical feel to a party, fill brown paper bags with some garden soil and place a tapered candle into the soil, light the candles, just before the guests arrive and you will have beautiful garden lighting that will last all night.
  • Christmas tree lights:
    Everybody has at least 1 set of Christmas tree fairy lights in their attic, so dust off the lights, choose a feature in your garden or house and drape the lights over the feature
  • Tea light candles:
    Scatter tea light candles randomly around the tables
  • Food Feature:
    Turn your food table into a feature, fold your napkins or serviettes in an artistic way, scatter a few tea light candles, some flower petals and voila! You will find that by doing this, it will transform your room.
  • Water feature:
    Cut some garden flowers and place the heads of the flowers in any water feature i.e. garden water features, swimming pools, glass bowls.

Keep it simple, you cannot cater to everyone’s tastes, but make sure that you have the basics e.g. cool drink, fruit juice, beer, wine and Alcho Pops. Tell all your guests, what you will be providing and if they have a specific requirement, then they would need to bring it themselves, most people bring their own favourite drink to a party anyway.

Themes and Fancy Dress:
When choosing a theme for a party and the guests are required to dress up, make sure that you have chosen a theme where your guests are able to dress up with no added cost to them i.e. make sure they can use items in their wardrobes and won’t have to go out and buy or hire a costume for the event.

Instead of hiring out a venue, host the party at home. If your house is not suited for parties, phone a friend and host it at their house. If they are good friends they would be more than willing to help.


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