Morning! This post was supposed to go up last week but I have a one year old who has decided that napping is sooooo last year. Makes for a fun but very long day.
Let’s face it, entertaining is expensive. Not only do you have the food and drinks to supply but if you’re a Type A like me, you want it to look great as well, which usually ends up costing mucho $$$. A couple of rules that I tend to follow are always start with a colour scheme, food looks best on white or ivory serving dishes and make a statement.
Ok, colour scheme… This year I went with blues and greens. This was decided when I found some great foil number balloons in metallic blue, also available in other colours but sidebar -gold and silver are great for a New Year’s party. My go to source for party balloons is Bargain Balloons. They have a huge selection of balloons and are super affordable and they ship across Canada and the US. If you’re local to Toronto, you can pick up your order at their warehouse in Mississauga.
Now, these balloons are not inflated so you can either bring them to a party supply store to have inflated (also major $$) or you can rent a helium tank and do it yourself. I rented mine from Blow It which was very close to home, they delivered the tank the day before the party and I didn’t have to leave a deposit. Apparently this worldwide helium shortage thing is real because helium is not cheap. But with the savings on the balloons above you can afford to splurge here. Plus these make a huge statement and make great backdrops for photos. I added some colourful tissue confetti to the clear balloons before inflating for a fun look.
Did I mention I’m Type A? I really, really love the look of matching serving dishes on a buffet table. The repetition of the platters allows the food to stand out and be the star. Personally, I think food looks best on white or ivory serving dishes. That’s not to say that I go out and buy expensive pieces. All of the items you see below are from the dollar store and ring in at or just under $2 per item.
The sectioned containers (dressed up in washi tape also purchased at the dollar store) can hold crackers, candies or other munchies. I used the fun plastic bowls for chips and the rest of the hors d’oeurves, veggies and fruit were on the white oblong trays. The vases also got the washi tape treatment and were used on the buffet table to hold cutlery and fun stripey straws. I love to use plastic for a kids party as I don’t have to worry about something getting broken or someone getting injured. I will reuse these year over year for Hudson’s parties as I can change up the colour scheme by adding in a pop of colour or changing out a bowl or two.
If you don’t entertain that often or just don’t have storage for a million party pieces, then I would recommend a party rental company. My personal favourite is Chairman Mills.
The service is great, they are affordable, they pick up and deliver and they are about 5 minutes away from where I live. They stock everything from modern to traditional party decor and supplies. The best part, no dishes and no dirty linens to deal with. Just roll it up, throw it in a box and hand it back. I rented some floor length royal blue tablecloths for the party. Literally, I called them the day before the party, picked them up an hour later and dropped them off the next day. All for less than the cost of buying new tablecloths. Plus, I don’t have to launder, store or ugh, iron them. And truthfully, even if I did buy them I probably wouldn’t use them very much, if ever again.
So, there you have it, a few great sources and some tricks for keeping the budget at a reasonable level. We went a little bigger than normal this year as it was Hudson’s first birthday. We likely will scale it back for next year although as I write that, I’ve just had a few dozen themes pop into my head. Better start saving now…..
PS If you’re looking for some great party ideas, be sure to follow me on Pinterest!