One quick glance through Pinterest in search of ideas for your child’s birthday party might be enough to send you into a spiral of doubt about your self-worth. It seems like every mom is trying to outdo one another in the quest to style the perfect birthday party. And while I love to drool over the pretty images and adorable details, I just don’t have the time to put that together for my kids. My guess is that maybe you don’t either and you’re left feeling like you’ll have to slap up the party pack you found on sale or hire a full design team to achieve Pinterest-worthy birthday party results.
But, I have some great news for you. There are some simple and easy ways to make your child’s birthday party look like you spent a million bucks and a thousand hours without doing either of those.
Disclaimer: Your kiddo won’t care what you do as long as he or she is loved and celebrated but if making it look nice is something that matters to you (not your friends), then these tips will make it easier. My motto is always ‘you do you’!
Pinterest-Worthy Birthday Party Tips
Fun Food Names
Transform plain foods into party foods by giving them a cute name. It’s an easy way to add details that don’t take any extra work besides printing out some food labels or handwritten on card stock. Search Pinterest for ideas and keep it simple. Not everything has to have a cute name. Sometimes I only do the desserts or just the main course.
Unless cooking is what gives you life (I am very jealous, by the way) then skip cooking entirely. Give yourself permission to order pizza or a tray of sandwiches and put out some fruit and chips. Serve dessert only or use your grocery store deli. You’re not throwing a dinner party so don’t stress about fancy foods. Kids don’t like them anyway and your guests will be happy and well-fed.
Transform a store bought items
There are simple ways to transform store-bought treats to make them look homemade or fancy. I love using candy melts in the party colors to jazz up pretzels or popcorn. Arrange fruit in a fun way or use cookie cutters to cut fun sandwich shapes. Whatever you pick, make sure it can be done ahead of time so you’re not fussing with food at the last minute.
Print Custom Decor
Buying a printable party pack on Etsy is my go to for birthday planning. I try to look for one that includes an invite, some cupcake toppers, and maybe a banner, but you pick what works for your needs. Tons of characters and themes are available and I love that I am supporting a small business. I get my printing done at a local business center and save myself hours of trying to design something myself. Instead, I get a custom look for less than $30.
Pick a color scheme
Pick a few unifying colors for your theme and use them everywhere! Buy the paper goods in those colors, order the balloons in those colors, etc. You can add some character details if you want but the bulk of your supplies should be solid colors. It saves a ton of money since you’re not paying licensing fees for popular brands. It also makes the design look intentional and not thrown together.
Balloons are such a cheap decoration option but they make a huge visual impact. I get solid color latex balloons to match our party colors for about a dollar a piece and use them all over the party to add pops of color. Skip the expensive mylar balloons and get more of the others. Tie a few to the front railing, use as centerpieces, or decorate a buffet table. Group them in twos or threes and skip the expensive weights for tape or a flower pot you already have.
Have a focal area
Don’t decorate your whole house! Pick one or two high impact areas to display your theme. A table against the wall is perfect because you can hang a banner (printed from your party pack) or a pice of fabric. Display your cake and a few balloons and you’ve got a Pinterest-worthy photo background. Just like hanging art, a focal setup with lots of color in one area makes a bigger impression than a bunch of smaller things scattered around the room. Plus, it’s less work to set up and clean up.
Cupcakes from grocery store
Skip the elaborate cake and do cupcakes instead. They’re easy for little hands, require less work since you’re not cutting them, and save you money. I order mine from the local grocery store in my coordinating party colors. They’re tasty and no one has complained yet. If you need a cake, most bakeries can also do plain cakes in any color you want. Save your fancy desserts money for a more discerning crowd and give the kids what they want…lots of frosting!
To customize your cupcakes or cake, make some printable toppers. Etsy has tons of options and some might come with your party pack of printables (say that 3 time fast) but you can also make them in Powerpoint or PicMonkey. A two-inch circle works great for cupcake toppers. Print them, cut them out and tape them on a toothpick before sticking them in the cupcakes. It’s a simple and inexpensive way to add some unique detail to your party.
So there you have it! You can design a show-stopping birthday party with just a few simple details that make you look like the Pinterest queen. Remember, this is all supposed to be live-giving and fun, so if you find yourself up at 3 am dipping pretzel rods, you need to dial it back. But hopefully with these Pinterest-worthy birthday party tips, you’ll save time and money but still end up with a special and unique party for your child. Happy planning!
What’s your favorite party tip? Leave a comment with your best tip on making party planning a little bit easier!