And by "budget friendly" I mean literally NO budget.
I am no expert on party planning and even less of an expert on budgeting, but I did throw a little holiday party recently and we are rather strapped for cash with Mike in grad school and me home with the kids, so here are some ideas I thought I'd share from my recent party planning endeavors.
1. Use what you have: even though most parties pictured on Pinterest show all matching serving platters coupled with matching plates, cups and drink pitchers, when you are on a budget, you just do not have the cash to spring for a new set of party dishes. I do however have quite the hodgepodge of various assorted hand-me-down dishes and thrift store purchases that have made their way into my china cabinet over the years, so I just used what I had and pretend that I intended them not to match. I didn't intend it.
2. Use twine. Twine is super cheap and comes with quite a bit on a roll and it makes everything look cute! I only had super duper cheap plastic cups and instead of getting cute festive ones for my super duper cheap boxed wine, I just twined them up:
And it worked!
3. Use your kid's construction paper (see above photo). Also really cheap and maybe already in your house. I also had some Christmas stamps that I was able to utilize to spruce it up for labels and what not, but you could just use your own stellar artistry skills and go to town, no one will be the wiser. Here's another photo for fun.
4. Wrap your boxed wine. I went with the very cheapest large boxed Franzia for my party, and wrapping it up like a present did double duty as holiday decor and hiding how cheap I am. See:
5. Use food as docor. I realized after icing roughly 50 sugar cookie candy canes that they could easily be used on a mini tree as a festive dorcation without spending any extra cash.
6. Play a festive holiday film. This requires no money if you already own one, or if you already subscribe to Netflix streaming like me, you can just stream a holiday classic like White Christmas- one of my all time favorites- and bring added festive fun to your party. White Christmas is especially great because if enough people know all the songs it turns into it's own karaoke party as well, or at least it does in my family.
If you're going for a new year's day party film I am interested in checking out this Holiday Madagascar movie for the kids or for the adult crowd going with a super cheese ball romantic dramady like Love Actually, depending on the gender and age of those in attendance. Netflix streaming is teaming with endless entertaining possibilities, go see for yourself.
So that is all I have for now, how about you? What do you do to scrimp and still be fun and festive as a host/hostess? Lay it on me and have a happy new year, Party People!
A small disclosure: I am a part of the Netflix Stream Team and have included them in this post, which I will be doing monthly as a part of the team. However, this is content I would have blogged about either way and since Netflix is already a central part of our days, it works out well.