Turning 21 this year, I had my fair share of attending and styling parties. Parties may seem really simple on the surface but in actual fact there are lots of teeny weeny details that have to be taken into consideration (some people even say that birthday parties are like your mini weddings LOL). So here are some things that I learned whilst styling, which may be helpful for those of you who are planning to DIY your parties:

Invites

These are not a must but good to have as it really saves the trouble of having to repeat and repeat and repeat the same information to different groups of friends/family. Information that should be included here are: day and date of party, time, venue, RSVP date and dress code (if any).

Print and snail mail these to your guests because human touch is always good in this over-digitalised era and it also provides a little surprise for your guests (since most mails you'll receive nowadays are bills and adverts)! If you're on a tighter budget, you can also create a digitalised version of your invite and mass send it out. Or you can write/draw your invites and scan it onto your phones!

Guests

Making your guests feel comfortable is something that is worth your concern, as you are probably gonna have several groups of friends that are complete strangers coming together for the first time at your party. There'll be wafts of awkward laughter, exchanges of awkward looks, and you'll end up hopping from one group of friends to another during the party (okay I guess the dude that said birthday parties are mini weddings was right). And then by the end of the party, you're so worn out trying to make things better but it is still as awkward... You get the drift - it is crucial to make your guests feel comfortable at the party.

Come up with activities such as a game of Bingo or Jenga with a twist whereby each block drawn has a reward or punishment (e.g. downing a spoon of fish sauce with wasabi aka evil sauce of 1000 cuttlefish). You can also have your guests pen down their well wishes for you or place personalised favors (plus points for being meticulous) in a crate and your guests will have to dig and find their own favors, which creates an opportunity for them to interact. Favors don't have to be costly - it can be as simple as small bunches of baby's breath that can be kept as dried flowers thereafter. Girls would love it, and guys, well they actually like flowers too!

If all else fails, bring out that Bacardi (iKeedz or am I????)

Cake Table

Been scrolling through Instagram and noticed the increasing trend of people taking photos standing behind a table filled with either desserts/cake/gifts. It's nice, but it can get a little cramped where you have to carefully thread between the table and backdrop so as not to knock over the food. Also, you're probably gonna spend around $200-300 on that two tier cake so why not let it shine on it's own?

Save costs by getting a plain cream cake and pimp it up with blooms and greens yourself! This is a great alternative if you already have in mind how your cake should look like and what's good about this is that you can control the colours and type of flowers used. A+ for effort too!

^^^ Clearly evident here that this cake was not decorated by a professional because look at the odd bits of macaron stuck in the middle of the cake hahahahaha well, no one's gonna take a photo of the cake from above so as long as it looks pretty on its sides it's all good!

Having a cake table also means another photo opportunity for your guests to goof around! Ft. birthday girl & her slave ahahaha

Food Table

Having separate tables for food and cake means that you can go all out getting your fave food, without having to worry if it actually looks good in photos! Just remember to add small touches of decor such as small bottles of flowers or even a foliage arrangement to tie things together. 

Backdrop

There are hundreds of possibilities of how your backdrop can turn out but what's important is to narrow down the type of look that you like and focus solely on that theme (because we all know that one fickle minded friend who likes everything and anything). One tip is to simply use fabric as the backdrop depending on the type of look you're going for. If you're looking for something dreamy and soft, tulle is the way to go. If contemporary is what you're looking for, try a black and white striped cloth which will exude a chic and modern vibe. Width wise your backdrop should be at least 2.5m wide while most ceilings here in Singapore are about 2.5 - 3m high, so do remember to check your venue's spatial dimensions.

Rentals

Don't mean to haolian, but I think I improved a little from my previous chalk art! At least the flowers in this look less like a five year old's drawing HAHA. I tried replicating the flowers from the invites for this but apparently it didn't work that well 😂

Okay back to the topic on rentals, renting props (e.g. cake stands, chalkboard, backdrop stand) is gonna save you a lot of money as compared to buying new ones. You're probably thinking of reusing that cake stand that you're buying from IKEA but most of the time, you don't and it's just gonna be there collecting dust. Omg, I sound like my mom. Anyway, there are many prop rental companies around (doesn't have to be me la hor but of course it'll be good if you can rent from me 😁😁😁) and they offer a variety of props which can be used for various party themes. Your job is to then pick the ones best suited for your theme and then you're halfway there to PARTAYEEEE

And there you have it! My two cents worth on ideas for styling your parties. The full set of photos for this party can be found here.

P.s thank you Sean and Adam for being my slaves for a day even though we've never spoken a word in sec school and then five years later you guys end up hanging stuff and making mojito for me ahahahahahaha THANKS SO MUCH!

P.p.s Hur hur you're no longer a teen now Germz no more neon pink for you