All birthdays are special, whether your child is celebrating another year older or reaching a milestone. And hosting a birthday bash is one of the best ways to bring everyone together. But planning a birthday party at home can feel overwhelming without the proper checklist.
From organizing the supplies to keeping track of the guest list, there are lots of details to consider along the way. Luckily, we’ve combined all of the essential tasks into this step-by-step guide to help everything run smoothly as the big day arrives.
Let’s get planning!
APPROXIMATELY 2 MONTHS BEFORE
The first step to planning a birthday party at home begins with a few basics:
- Create a party budget to help with different expenses like decorations, entertainment, food, and gifts
- Think of a super fun theme that your child will love
- Make a guest list to determine how many people will attend and whether it’ll only be friends, family, or both
- Save the date! When choosing a date and time, you may want to consider a few options to accommodate the guests
- (Optional) Depending on your budget, book any birthday performers and/or photographers
Psst! Want to make it an Our Generation party theme? Decorate your home with balloons, streamers, ribbons, and tablecloths in pink and yellow colors. Your child’s friends can also RSVP with their dolls!
1 MONTH BEFORE THE PARTY
Once you’ve created the guest list, set aside some time to prepare the invitations and other activities:
- Order or craft the invitations. For added fun, decorate the invitations with supplies that match your party’s theme
- Include the party’s start and end time, phone number, and directions
- Plan which types of activities and games the kids will participate in. You can also print out coloring sheets to include as a party favor
- Purchase the party supplies and decorations needed to turn your home into the perfect party space
2 TO 3 WEEKS AWAY
- Plan your party menu (if you’re staying true to the OG party theme, how cute would it be to bring their favorite doll’s food to life! Take inspiration from the Party is Served set, Party Time desserts table, or the Oh So Sweet Cart. You can also add pies, cupcakes, and other baked goods to the mix)
- Place your order for the birthday cake (ordering in advance will help you avoid any potential hiccups down the road)
- Scoop up the birthday gifts (if shopping online, make sure your item(s) will arrive on time)
THE WEEK OF THE PARTY
With the big day around the corner, give yourself enough time to complete any remaining to-dos.
- Confirm with the guests and send out any last-minute details
- Go grocery shopping for finger foods, drinks, and yummy munchies you plan on serving
- Complete any baked goods (if baking)
- Wrap the birthday presents (make sure there’s no peeking!)
- Buy necessary supplies like plates, napkins, cups, and cutlery (opt for plastic dinnerware to make cleaning up much easier)
- Double-check for candles
- Create a party playlist to dance to
ON THE EVE OF THE PARTY
- Pick up the cake if ordered and remember to check if everything is perfect
- Decorate your home by hanging banners, streamers, balloons, and the rest of the supplies
- Set up the activities, games, and party favors
- Prep the dining area with plates, napkins, and utensils.
- Create a mini space where the dolls can sit and join the party
MORNING OF THE PARTY
Hooray! You made it!
- Finish up any last-minute decorating
- Complete the serving table with the finger foods, drinks, and other munchies
- Tye balloons to the front door to welcome guests
- Start the music playlist
- Take photos of the party scene and cake to create lasting memories (and to celebrate your hard work!)
We hope this planning guide will help make your next birthday party a spectacular celebration!