Want to throw a party but aren’t sure where to start? Well do I have you covered! In my brand new eBook Secrets of a Party Planner I take you through everything you need to know about putting a party together from beginning to end. Take a look at my first chapter as a sneak peak, and pick up the rest here.


Whenever I sit down with a new client there is a list of things that I generally ask them to get an idea of what it is they want to accomplish with their party, and get an idea of how to design it for them.

As a reader of The Secrets of a Party Planner, you are privy to the documented lists that I create for The Party Connection event planning and my initial meeting is always the most basic, simply so I can open up a dialogue with the customer and get them envisioning the event. My list is attached, but it always includes:

  • Date
  • Venue
  • Theme
  • Entertainment
  • Decorations
  • Food/Catering
  • Bar/Drinks
  • Guestlist
  • Invitations
  • Budget

To delve a bit deeper, these are the kind of questions you need to start thinking about when sitting down to plan a party:

  1. What is the party for? Is it a birthday party? Is it a Christening? Who are you celebrating and is it aimed for children or for adults? Who and what the party is for, sets quite a substantial tone for the party.
  2. Do you want a theme? I will always suggest a theme because that makes the party fun, memorable and easier to design. It could range from anything from pirates and dinosaurs to things starting with the letter C, to colours or just styles like modern or vintage. A theme makes a party.
  3. Did you have anything in mind for decorations? Some people won’t have a clue, and leave that up to the event stylist to decide, whereas some people want an swan shaped ice-sculpture in the middle of the table. Determine if you see anything in particular decorating the event and lead with that, otherwise you can roam the online world for inspiration.
  4. Who are you inviting? Is it a large crowd or a small gathering? Are they young, old, rowdy or quiet? This allows you to think of venue possibilities, invites and gets you a rough number for catering.
  5. How are you inviting them? Are you going to email them, Facebook them or send them an actual invite? This will provide answers on what exactly you need to design.
  6. What time are you thinking? Setting a time for a party also sets the tone and style. If it’s an afternoon party you could have high tea, or a BBQ. If it’s a nighttime party it might be more of a cocktail soiree or a black tie event. If it’s a birthday party, what season does it fall in? You don’t want to have an outdoor night event if it’s the middle of winter. That would be just uncomfortable for everybody.
  7. What is your budget? While some people don’t like to discuss money, it will take some to make a party – but just how much depends on you. You could throw a lot at it and professionally hire everything, or you can do it on the cheap with a lot of DIY and homemade craft projects. Setting a budget will determine what you need to spend your money on and how.
  8. Did you want entertainment? This can really vary from playing games at the party, to hiring a performer, and even determine what music will be provided if you want to get a DJ or a band at the event. It will also determine where you need to start looking and the space you need for the venue.
  9. What food and drink do you want? Did you see it as a cocktail party with finger food, or a sit down dinner? Deciding what food you want is a great indication of where to go for a venue.
  10. Where do you see the event taking place? This can change depending on what is available, but when you set out to plan a party you tend to have at least a vision in mind. Where did that vision set the party to be? Was it outside in a park? Was it your house? Was it a restaurant? Finding this place comes next, but getting an idea of what to look for is always helpful.
  11. What is important to you? This one is quiet an unusual question, but it helps. If your having your child’s first birthday party is activities going to be more important for the children, or the first birthday cake? Determining what is important to you for the event, determines where the majority of your time and money is going to go.

This information can be drawn up in any way. You can make a list, which is what I usually do, or a brainstorm bubble, a drawing or a poster. It works really well to then translate it into the second step – a Mood Board…

If you want to read more and get more awesome tried and true tips about planning a party, purchase Secrets of a Party Planner today here:

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Published by Courtney Carr