Prior to starting The Cinderella Co, I use to host children’s birthday parties throughout the SF Bay area. Although I absolutely love what I do now, there are times I really wish I was still planning events. I miss the energy and creativity of organizing and being on site. Since I’m no longer doing that anymore, I can share with you some party planning tips. If your child is between the ages of 4-6, this is a perfect time to have a Princess themed event. As I mentioned in a previous post, early planning is always wise. You want to have an organized plan of how your party will be. Depending on your budget, you can spend as much or as little as want. Here are some simple and reasonably priced ideas that I recommend.
Guest list: I am a firm believer of keeping things to a minimum. I am always going to favor inviting 12 or less children for this age group. If that is too small of a number, I recommend 15 or less. One way to keep the numbers lower is by inviting mainly girls and not extending the invite to the boys in the class. Granted, there will always be close friends of the opposite sex who you may want to include.
Invitations: The early bird gets the worm. As your kids start kindergarten, try to get your invitations out at least 3 weeks prior. Be sure to check your child’s soccer and school schedules to make sure nothing else interferes with the date beforehand. I can’t tell you how many times I hear from mom’s while taking bookings for The Cinderella Co, that another child is having a party on the same day or there’s a soccer match taking place and they need to reschedule. You can either purchase fill-ins, make your own or have them professionally printed.
Entertainment: If you are hiring a character company to come in and to entertain, please don’t procrastinate about this. You also want book the entertainment before you order invitations and have them printed. Choose a Princess theme.
Decor: This is where the fun starts. Start by choosing your color scheme. Soft pinks and golds, greens, etc. Balloons, crepe paper, fabric banners, tissue paper, tulle, ribbon, fresh and faux flowers are all ways to help decorate. You can rent juvenile table and chairs for this younger age group that are reasonably priced. Most rental companies have the long rectangular tables, but for smaller parties I prefer using round tables for a tea party theme. You can check to see if they carry those. Most of the companies have the ugly plastic chairs that I cannot stand, see if they have white wooden folding chairs. They are so much more attractive and will cost a little more. Depending on budget, you can rent cloth table linens. You can either rent an inexpensive white drape that goes to the floor with a colored overlay or a premium drape that goes all the way to the floor. You can swag the fabric if you like and use ribbon and flowers to decorate. I always like decorating the chairs with with ribbon, tulle and flowers.
Table settings: You can either pull out your fine china or purchase good looking paper products. If using your china, I never had a problem with breakage with small children. Centerpieces can either be fresh flowers or anything theme related that you find. You can accent with pretty confetti, gems or anything you find.
Craft Table: Kids love making crafts. You can use a matching disposable liner.
You can go as simple or as elaborate as you like. You can do almost anything from make fabulous crowns to assembling wands and decorating mirrors.
Activities: Games are dependent on the age group. Organized games such as Pin the Tail, Pass the Glass Slipper, having photo booth are all fun.
Lunch: Kids this age do not eat very long–15 minutes top. Small cut-out tea sandwiches with fresh fruit with dips and veggies are always a hit.
Dress-up: You may be able to rent costumes from a local event planner. If not, have everyone come in their princess best. Depending on budget, you can purchase inexpensive tutus that will all serve as a take home gift. You can have a friend or an older teen help with nails, hair and makeovers.
Cakes: I have to admit you can go crazy with castle and princess style cakes. Just keep in mind those cakes feed an army and are quite pricey. An inexpensive way around this is serving really fabulous cupcakes or a beautifully decorated smaller cake.
Pinata: Children love pinatas. If you’re not keen on candy, you can fill it with small inexpensive toys from Oriental Trading. For those who do have a sweet tooth, a candy buffet is always a welcome attraction by children.