(1) Pick a ThemeWe did a basic two
color theme, but I know other parties did themes like "brown paper packages tied up with string." I did colors because I'm lazy. I purposely picked colors that matched the decorations I already had around my house. Beyond that, I just bought matching napkins and cups.
(2) Send Out InvitesI used Pingg (free) because I prefer it over Evite (here's why). Just make sure you select the free options while creating your invite. Here's my invite below. Read the bottom half of the invitation to get an idea of how the exchange works. SEE FREE INVITATION DOWNLOAD INFORMATION ON THE CAPTION BELOW! :)
|If you "Like" our Facebook page, you can download the free invitation file HERE (in Word format so you can change the information, colors, etc). If you don't have Facebook, you can also comment below or e-mail us and we'll send you the invitation file.|
(3) Make Party Favors (Optional)My fabulous co-host made cute bags (using this printable) and included (among other goodies) a pen/paper so people could take notes on items they wanted but didn't get.
(4) Pick Up a Few Party EssentialsPlates, cups, napkins, silverware. I also made English Trifle, spa water, and sparking raspberry lemonade (1 can frozen raspberry lemonade, 3 cups (24 oz) Sprite, 4 cups water, ice, and some freshly crushed raspberries--Serves 8-12). We had guests bring their favorite dessert or appetizer so we had SO much food. We encouraged people to exchange treats before leaving.
(5) Set upLike I said, most of my decorations were things I already had. My co-host also made some adorable banners using paint sample cards and tied some bows around mason jars. In addition to a food table, I had one area next to the entrance where guests dropped off their three "Favorite" items, wrote their name on three pieces of paper, and added them to a bowl. I had some sweet tunes playing (I actually created a playlist so we didn't have to listen to awkward Pandora ads in the middle of the party), but you could only hear the music during the "Favorite Things" presentation. We were a chatty group.
(6) PartyI encouraged people to start in on the food right away (partially because we were running out of places to put goodies). Once the guests had a chance to mingle for a good while, we handed out the party bags and started the exchange. I presented my "Favorite Item" first, then gave each guest a turn. Each guest introduced herself, introduced her item, then drew three names out of the bowl to find out who the big winners were. But like in Miss Congeniality, we were "all winners" because everyone scored three new favorite things.
|One corner of the crew--we had about two dozen ladies total.|
"What should I bring for $5 or less?"
I brought the Seche Vite Dry Fast Top Coat (love that stuff--best nail top coat ever, usually $10, but get it for less than $5 with free shipping from Amazon here). Some other items brought (to get your creative juices flowing):
- Someone brought the Kiera Knightly Pride & Prejudice DVD (good one, huh?). You can actually get quite a few DVDs on Amazon for $5 or less (e.g. While You Were Sleeping, The Notebook, Grease or The Holiday.)
- Yogurtland gift card cutely wrapped in yogurt cup and cellophane
- Super-fancy water bottle
- Groupon for a photobook
- Dry shampoo (brought by a couple different ladies--I'm sure my husband would be relieved to hear I'm not the only girl who doesn't wash her hair everyday).
- Various Trader Joe's goodies (Everything from sunscreen to Apricot preserves)
- Homemade deliciousness (e.g. granola bars, caramel popcorn)
- Burt's Bees lip balm
And that's it! If you have any questions, shoot me a comment below.
My begging-to-be-pinned image:
Share - What would you have brought to this "Favorite Things" party?
What other themed parties have you loved hosting or attending?