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Saturday, September 9, 2023

From Drab To Fab: How To Elevate Your Last-Minute Party Plans

It’s always fun to plan a party… or is it? Well, trying to organise one at the very last minute might be less than abundantly enjoyable. Being so short of time may mean that you end up making some less-than-brilliant choices. Or it might simply risk being a bland event, or to put it in other words, “just another party”.

With all that in mind, you might be looking for some tips on how you can jazz up your last-minute party with some quick changes before the attendees start turning up.

Let us, then, delve into some of the best changes you could make. Remember: it’s all about rapidly transforming something that threatens to be a dull affair, into something genuinely extraordinary for everyone involved.

Image by Karolina Grabowska from Pixabay

Decide on a fun and creative theme

Basing your party around a particular theme might seem like the kind of thing you would do if you had days and weeks, rather than hours, to prepare for your bash. But depending on what you happen to have lying around or easily available, it might still be possible to give your party a genuinely cool and creative theme that helps to make it a bit more interesting for everyone present.

Choose the right theme for your event, and it can be a great way to add some excitement to your last-minute party, helping to get everyone into a bit more of a full-on party mood.

Whether it's a vintage-inspired garden gathering, a 1920s speakeasy affair, or even an energetic ‘80s dance extravaganza, having a theme will also help give you a clear focus on which decorations and activities to go with (as we will cover further down in this article).

Set the mood nicely with the right decorations

Presuming you have settled on a theme (if you have decided to embrace the above tip), and you know exactly where your last-minute party will be taking place, you will already have a fair amount of information that will enable you to make some great choices on the decorations, too.

And of course, one of the best things about decorations in this context, is that they really can be ridiculously simple. We’re referring to such things as balloons, streamers, paper lanterns… or maybe even decorations you can create yourself, if you have a bit more time (think the likes of balloon arches and ‘flowers’ made from shredded paper). 

Going back to what we mentioned about the party theme, be sure to think carefully about how your chosen decorations might tie in with this. If, for example, your party will be taking place in a garden, you may be able to incorporate elements like pinecones or wildflowers into the décor, or even just embrace verdant and green decorations that you happen to have in the house.

Put together an irresistible menu

Food can really make or break a party. However, it is also true that you don't have to be an amazing chef to be able to create a delicious menu for a last-minute party.

You could simply opt for easy-to-assemble finger foods and quick snacks such as chips and dips or sandwiches. Don’t forget, though, to cater for any allergies and specific dietary requirements.

Drinks are also a key part of a great menu. So, you should be sure to offer a variety of soft and alcoholic drinks. Don’t hesitate to get creative by encouraging guests to make their own cocktails or mocktails for a bit of added fun!

Add a few more fun activities and equipment

No party is complete without activities to keep your guests entertained. If you're throwing a small gathering, try setting up some board games or a karaoke machine.

For larger groups, opt for outdoor games like Twister or even giant Jenga! If you want to be extra creative, don’t hesitate to rustle up your own activities such as scavenger hunts or trivia games.

Or you could even invest in London, Hertfordshire, or Essex photo booth hire – from a reputable company like Event Rhino – to add some further hilarity and memorable “anecdote material” to your event.

No matter what activities you choose, it’s still a good idea to ensure they fit your broader party theme. Make sure, too, that you consider any special needs like the age or physical abilities of your guests.

Stipulate a dress code

To add a touch of elegance to your last-minute party, consider implementing a dress code. This not only helps to set the mood, but can also do a lot to make the event feel like much more of an “occasion”, as it encourages guests to dress up more ambitiously than they typically would.

For instance, if you’re going for a 1920s speakeasy theme, why not ask your invitees to come dressed in roaring ‘20s-style attire?

Regardless of the dress code you choose, you should make sure you provide notice in advance so that your guests have time to plan their outfits accordingly. For this reason, setting a dress code may make more sense for some last-minute events than it does for others. 

Pick the perfect playlist

Having the right playlist can truly make or break your spontaneous gathering. Ensure you curate one that aligns with the theme and vibe that you desire, and don't be afraid to mix it up with different, perhaps unexpected combinations of genres and artists.

If you're feeling particularly creative, consider crafting playlists for segments of the night. For example, you could kick off with more relaxed tunes, gradually ramp up to a lively party tempo, and then bring it back down for a mellower atmosphere later in the evening.

Lastly, don't overlook the importance of including songs in your playlist to give your guests a chance to take a breather from dancing and simply enjoy each other's company. This can also create an opportunity to set an ambience while keeping things relaxed and casual.

A last-minute party can still be memorable for all the finest reasons

No matter how last-minute your party plans are, you can still throw a great event. Taking such steps as basing everything on a theme, putting together a fun playlist, and making the right food available, can all help to make your last-minute party a hit among all the cool people you invite.

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