Happy Wednesday from blustery western New York! I hope your week is going well. Today we embark on the last (but not least!!) section of the blog’s mini-series: How to Host an Ombre Party: Planning and Organizing.
I’m Type-A and need organization in my life. With a spunky and curious almost 1-year old crawling at a very fast speed, I needed a good battle plan in order to plan this party well. Naturally, I relied on my love for spreadsheets to maintain sanity. Below I walk you through the various steps I took with snippets from my “production plan.” It might be a little extreme for some, so do what works for you, but I hope my description of the process benefits you.
Step 1: Choose a Theme
With social media these days, most people have a harder time choosing one theme rather than not picking a theme at all, but it’s important to do this so that the party has a cohesive look.
Step 2: Choose & Send the Invitations
Send the invitations 4-6 weeks in advance, depending on if guests are local or are out of town. If snail mail isn’t your thing, there are plenty online invitation sites beyond your basic E-vite that give your party the proper amount of gravitas. (My favorite is Paperless Post.)
Step 3: Identify the Decor Elements
Gather all your ideas in one place and (do I even need to say it?) include them on a Pinterest board. This will help you visualize the entire event at once.
Step 4: Plan the Menu
The time and length of the party influences how much food to serve. Add these to your Pinterest board as well and, if you’re like me, put all your recipes into 1 document so when you’re grocery shopping, they’re all together. On the week of the party, print out your recipes and you have your shopping list!
Step 5: Finalize the Decor
Purchase your decor and other supplies from outside vendors (like your friends at Etsy) with plenty of time for the shop to design and mail them, accounting for shipping delays. Also, begin crafting (if you’re making anything by hand).
Step 6: Finalize the Layout
Walk through your space like a guest and determine the natural flow. Decide where everything (yes, EVERYTHING) will go. Where will they put their coats/bags? Are the refreshments easily accessible yet out of the way to avoid congestion? Is there enough seating? Will any of your brilliant ideas get in the way of the traffic pattern?
To organize my thoughts, I put together a decor plan in a simple MS Word document. I took pictures of the different spaces in my house and placed them in a document next to each decor element. This helped me visualize if a room had too much or not enough! The images in this post are screen grabs from this document. (Psst: this is what event planners did before Pinterest existed!)
Step 7: Put Together a Schedule for the Party Week / Party Day
If you saw this picture my sister posted the day before the party, you would know what I mean. More on this step in my next post in the series!
And for additional ideas on how to plan an event, check out this earlier post: How to Plan a Low-Stress Event.
What do you think? Did I forget anything? How do you get organized when planning a big event?
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