A Guide to Making the Best DIY Birthday Party Ever

By Hart

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    Tips, Tricks and Information for that no-fuss, at home DIY birthday party.

    There is just something wonderful about planning for a children’s birthday party. The balloons, cakes, party food (oh, spaghetti!) the gifts… what’s not to love? But with the rising costs in party and events planning, putting birthday parties ideas to work with professionals and venues can be quite expensive.


    Let’s try to keep things within a budget and plan a DIY birthday party! Read on to find out how you can host yours kid’s celebration at home while not breaking the bank! (This party will be for kids aged 10 years and below)

    Plan ahead!

    Before starting the exciting party planning, you have to figure out how to budget your own time and set a schedule for it. This won’t be the only thing on your plate everyday from now until D-Day, right?

    Set a moment to draw up a time sheet and to accommodate the following:

    1. Pre-Planning Phase- Allocation of tasks and budget for your team, how many weeks for planning, materials needed/suppliers to contact, theme of the party
    2. Sending out Invites- writing invitations, preparing list of invitees (your kid’s classmates, friends, family members), when to send out RSVP reminders
    3. Main Phase- purchasing crafts and supplies for decorations, brainstorming for games and activities, drawing up what food to cook or order, purchasing or creating party favors, checking of budget and other sudden costs
    4. 1-2 weeks Before the Party- finalise games and activities to be played, entertainers/hosts signed on, menu and cake ideas finalised, begin producing party favors and decorations
    5. 2-3 Days Before the Party- Final guest list prepared, start preparing food, purchase or bake the cake

    …A Little Help From My Friends

    Remember, you can’t be a super mom/super dad and do all of the planning on your own. You can enlist the help of a few friends or older family members to help you. You could also ask the people you know who can cook or bake to prepare the food! Your older kids and their friends can help out in greeting the guests and handling the party favors.

    Who Are Invited?

    You can’t have a grand birthday party at home without the guests. If your child is a young preschooler, you can make the list yourself. For kids older than 3 years old, consider asking him who he would want to go to his party.

    It would be best to already have a party theme before creating the invitations:

    For Boys– Star Wars, Marvel or DC heroes (or a mix!), outer space, sports like football and basketball, a western, medieval fantasy, Pixar movies, Halloween

    For Girls– tea party, Disney Princesses (Frozen, Brave and Moana are popular), beauty parlour or salon, little baker or cook, cupcakes and chocolates, flower garden, fashion show


    Of course, you’re not limited to these suggestions, and if you would like, you could mix and match these themes! Once you have a theme down, its time to think of what materials to use for the invitations. 

    Invitations can come in all sorts of types, and can really depend on the theme for your party. Here are some ideas to help you out:

    • Parchment paper and paper stars/animals stuffed into bottles
    • Cards shaped into origami
    • Cards with pop-ups in them
    • Crafts shaped into bookmarks, balls or other shapes
    • Small Boxes containing the invite and treats

    Do not forget to include the date, location and time of the party, and the RSVP information. It would be nice to also include notices that food would be served!

    Home, Sweet Home

    This is probably the detail you would worry about the least. Your birthday celebrant would not need to worry about his surroundings, and it will be easier for you to decorate the venue. All the party essentials and dining ware are where they should be as well. If you would like to have more control over where kids should go, you can separate the house into party areas using balloons and streamers.

    Golden Time

    Timing is crucial for any kid’s birthday party. Schedule the party when kids would be at their most energetic- the few hours in the late morning before lunch would be a great time slot. You also have to consider nap time for the younger kids. 

    Feast for a Little King/Queen

    You can’t spell a kid’s birthday party without cake! Baking a cake can be challenging if you don’t have the right skills and equipment. It would be best to hire a confectionery or to ask a friend to bake for you. 

    You could spend more time in choosing the right food for your young guests. Here are some things to consider:

    1. Finger foods like fried chicken strips, cookies, sandwiches and pizza are easiest to eat.
    2. You can serve the drinks in reusable and colorful containers. Mason jars are a great point to start.
    3. You can serve lunch and snacks in creative containers too. Plates can be made to look like balls for sports parties and popcorn/chips can be served from a cut-out crystal bowl.
    4. Make sure to prepare some food for the adults coming over to the party. Some good choices include spaghetti, club sandwiches, burgers, muffins and ice cream.

    Are You Not Entertained?

    Before you pick the phone to call your local clown, list down the friends or family members you know who have an interesting talent kids would love to see. It could be someone great at singing and dancing, or it could be as unique as shadow puppets or science experiments.

    Pick a team of entertainers who can take turns showing their talents for 1 1/2 to two hours. You can build your team around a host- he will be in charge of running things on stage and keeping the kids’ collective attention. There’s no need to hire a professional for this; you can pick your kid’s fun-loving baby sitter, their friend or a cool uncle or aunt!

    All this though will depend on the attention span of your guests. Most kids can focus on what they’re watching for 30 to 45 minutes at a time. You can schedule your program around this for easy time keeping.

    Here’s a Present For You!

    Last but not the least are the freebies! Your kid will get a lot of gifts during his birthday party; loot bags or small trinkets are a good way for your kid to show gratitude to his guests for coming over. It will also serve as a gesture of good will to their parents for allowing them to go to the party.

    You can incorporate the gift giving portion towards the end of the party. Guests can exchange the gift they will give for a fun loot bag- a small paper or plastic bag full of candies, small toys and a thank you card will do the trick. For a more creative touch, you can gift guests with a small cupcake, a memorabilia like a small statue or key chain, or stuffed toy or pillow with their name stitched on.


    A few more pointers

    • Not all plans are executed equal. Prepare for meltdowns like temper tantrums and accidents.
    • Make sure to have a first aid kit ready and stocked up.
    • Watch your budget- it’s alright to go a bit over budget, but do not overspend!
    • For each kid who is going to the party, list down their parent’s phone number.
    • Remember also to ask the parents about food allergies or important medical conditions.
    • Remind your child to say “thank you” for each gift or compliment he receives during the party.
    • Save a few minutes before the party for final checks and touch ups.
    • Don’t be afraid to push through with the party if you find any mishaps; ask your adult helpers to assist you!

    Most of all, have FUN! This is your child’s birthday party, and you planned this all for him. Enjoy the memories you’ll create with his friends and family! Happy planning!

    If you’re looking for the best party suppliers nearest you, you can search them up with Fun Kids Guide


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