This one's for all the parents out there looking to master the dream of a stress and hassle free birthday party that leaves your child telling you you're the best Mum or Dad ever! We can't please our kids and not ruin our bank balance and mental state can we?
Well folks we're here to tell you it's all in the planning.
Birthday party etiquette is changing. In a world where sustainability matters and less is slowly becoming more it's not really cool to be snapping up a load of tat in Poundland and doling out the plastic left, right and centre. Yes we want the children in attendance to feel like your kid is the coolest on the block but not at the expense of their fragile planet and their own poor mother who will be thinking 'how on earth can I better this?'
So our top tip?
Well it's a tip that you can apply to all aspects of life, not just your child's birthday party. Go back to basics. Do the simple stuff really well and watch those little eyes light up with happiness.
What does that actually mean?
Hands up if you can recall having an actress pretending to be Cinderella at your birthday party as a child? No? Me neither. So does the Elsa lookalike that you need to book three years in advance really need to feature on the modern day version? Can you imagine what the generation above has been thinking over the last few decades as they've seen the simple child's birthday party evolve into these epic blowouts to rival the Kardashian's Christmas Eve party?
To keep check on your efforts to go back to basics, when it comes to every aspect of party planning, think first about what they did in the 1970s and then think about the environmental impact of doing it that way.
A few practical ideas.....
1. Balloons. A party staple. As single use items not something that the planet can sustain but why not change to reusable foil balloons that you blow up with a straw and can be tucked away in a drawer to be used on repeat occasions. We'd argue they have a bigger impact anyway and look fabulous - especially in rose gold. What do you think? They are readily available in most good party shops.
2. Entertainers. It's tempting to spend a fortune bringing in an expert to entertain the children but don't think this is a necessity.
Remember the traditional party games we all used to play? How much did you love them! We're thinking of musical chairs, sleeping lions, the chocolate game (remember that one where you have to roll a dice, dress up and try and eat chocolate?) Oh and my personal favourite was always pass the parcel! Why not spend the money you'd spend on bringing in an entertainer on some really brilliant prizes that your guests will definitely use for some time after. Of course we have some ideas for you........
How about our range of eclectic and sparkly hair clips? Starting at just £6
Or croc sunglasses to keep them looking and feeling cool all summer long!
Let's face it the winner of pass the parcel totally deserves superhero status and this mask will ensure they live up to the title! At just £9 it's a winner.
Or you can actually crown your winner with this sparkly Alice headband.
3. Food. How many of us have completely over catered for parties before? You take what you think you will need and times it by five. Because... well you know, an extra twenty people might show up? And the parents might all expect to be fed like kings and it's at 1pm so maybe you should offer them prosecco and maybe someone will be allergic to this or that?
Remember that your child's birthday party is a big deal to you but to the parents of other children it's a small two hour (or actually we'd recommend an hour and a half) window of time. They won't have any expectation of a feast. Ask for any dietary requirements on the invitations and otherwise keep it simple! Hot drinks for grown ups, some healthy snacks (hit Pinterest for creative presentation inspo), sandwiches or some pizza slices and fruit, cake and maybe a good old bowl of jelly and ice cream for dessert. Running out of something isn't the end of the world. Remember the mantra.... Keep. It. Simple.
4. Finally - party bags. They are the elephant in the room at children's birthday parties in this new decade. A little plastic bag full of plastic tat that will get lost in the car is a bit 2010..... but doing away with the whole idea is just a bit mean no?
You could add a practical and totally on trend product like choosing one of our stainless steel straws from our pick & mix?
Why not put a little more thought in and buy each child a small gift again that they will actually use. Alongside 'keep it simple', 'spend more on less' is also an important message when it comes to sustaining Planet Earth.
Again we're here to help on that front. Have you taken a look at out children's collection? Our unisex gift collection starts from as little as £3.50.
Hope you all found this helpful. Alongside helping you to have more fun and sparkle hard this decade, we're also hoping to make more of a positive impact on the challenges facing our children's future. But like you, we're still learning and have decided that baby steps is the key to making lifelong changes that make a difference.
There's space for colour, sparkle, vibrance and fun in a responsible world if we work together. Hope you are as committed to figuring it all out as we are!
Beth Sparkles x