There are no two ways about it - kids' parties are a lot of work (I think I hear a collective sigh?) and can feel like a total chore for us time-poor party parents.
There's the weeks of planning leading up to the event, and the work certainly doesn't stop when the day finally arrives - there's waaaay too much to do!
But with a little party hack or two, life can be a whole lot simpler and in this post we've got you covered. Don't you dare plan another party for your young ones until you've read this list of party hacks that we've got for you!
Let's get started.
#1 Venue Victory
Hiring your party space from a local playgroup can save you a bucket load of cash.
For a small fee you can have access to all of the playgroup facilities and equipment. You may also be able to hire out a room or hall from a local church or club for a lower cost than other venues.
#2 Reuse and Recycle
Purchasing plain party décor and accessories in block colours (rather than licensed or patterned), can save you money in the long run, as you will be able to keep them to reuse for future parties.
#3 Go Electronic
If you prefer to go green by saving on paper, or you are on a strict party budget, you may like to go with sending out your invitations electronically. Some e-vite services are free, or very cheap.
#4 Fit Enough for a Table
A fitted sheet for a single bed will fit most rectangular tables, especially trestle tables. And cleanup is easy - just throw it in the wash!
#5 Blow up the Favours
Give balloons to each child as a party favour, or tie a balloon to each party bag. They will look amazing and the kids will love them.
#6 Ice Cream Dream
Serving ice cream for dessert? Pre-scoop it into muffin tins or cupcake liners and re-freeze, so it's already in serving size when you need it.
#7 DIY your Photo Booth
There's no need to hire a professional photographer, or even hire a photo booth. All you need to DIY is a fun backdrop, props and a camera.
#8 Wrap the Table
Wrapping paper makes great table runners at little expense.
#9 Here's the scoop
Small plastic beach buckets and their matching spades make great party snack servers, especially for summer or pool parties.
#10 Tulle it
Tulle simply cannot be overestimated as a highly versatile decoration for children’s parties. It can be draped from the ceiling, wrapped over balloons, be hung as a backdrop, hung on tables and chairs and so much more.
#11 Cool It
Think outside the esky box to keep your party drinks cold. A baby's inflatable pool or a wheelbarrow are both great storage options for keeping iced drinks.
#12 Easy Care
Accidents happen, even at a party. Set up a small first-aid kit for the party, with bandaids, hand sanitiser, sunscreen, mosquito-repellent, ointment, tissues, anit-bacterial wipes etc.
#13 Baking is a Serve
Colourful baking cups make perfect little serving cups for party snacks.
#14 Have them Eating out of the Hat
Paper party hats make great treat cones when they're turned upside-down and filled with delicious goodies!
#15 Ice Cream Cones make great Bowls
Fill ice cream cones with treats, for an edible bowl and no washing dishes!
#16 Stamp it On
There's no need to hire a face painter when you can quickly and easily DIY. Purchase foam stamps in multiple shapes. Dip them in the paint and them gently press on the kids' faces to get perfect shapes every time. You can then opt to embellish the design further if you wish.
#17 Foody Favours
Individual servings of sweet treats such as cookies, cupcakes, chocolate crackles, cake pops etc make great party favours. Wrap in cute bags or boxes with a label and you're done.
#18 Quiet Space
Create a quiet space, such as a bedroom, with some toys and books, where children who are feeling overwhelmed can escape from the noise.
#19 Get out of the Kitchen
Well ahead of time, cook and refrigerate or freeze any party food that can be prepared early, to reduce your time in the kitchen on party day.
#20 Hand it to them
If hosting a backyard party, set up a hand-washing station at your back tap, with some soap/handwash, paper towel and bin or bucket. That way, guests can wash their hands when required without having to trudge through your house.
#21 Don't Drip It
Threading cupcake liners onto paddle pop/popsicle sticks prevents ice cream and iceblock spills.
#22 Playlist Prep
Using your device and some speakers, you can prepare your party music playlist ahead of time and have it ready to go on party day!
#23 Glitter Good
Dip the top section of your party balloons into some glue, then into glitter, and hang upside down from the ceiling, for a big impact on a budget.
#24 Washi What
Decorate plain party decor with washi tape, for quick and easy decorating.
#25 Who's In Charge?
Remember to charge any cameras, camcorders and any other devices that will be required for the party.
#26 Pop the Top
Use lollipops as cake toppers - simply stick the sticks in!
#27 Just Dip It
Dip the ends of plastic cutlery into brightly coloured paint or glitter for a colourful party accessory.
#28 Clear things Up
By serving only clear or light-coloured drinks, you will eliminate staining from bright red cordial and the like! Also avoiding crisps with orange or yellow powder such as Cheee rings and corn chips, means not having to scrub off stains.
#29 Bulk Buys
Where you can, buy supplies in bulk to save yourself a packet!
#30 Odds and Evens
It is a good idea to aim for an even number of children in attendance at your party, especially if you will be playing party games that require teams or pairs.
#31 Venue Ready
Before the party, stock the bathroom with plenty of toilet paper, towels and soap. And set up garbage bins with bags, leaving a few spare bags for clean up (you’re going to need them!).
#32 Own the Phone
If parents are not planning on staying on at your party with their kids, make sure you have an emergency phone number for them.
#33 Favour the Door
A good tip is to store your party favours near the front door to keep them handy for handing out to guests as they leave.
So, that's our list of party hacks for kids' parties. We hope you have found some new ideas and inspiration for your next celebration. We'd love to hear your ideas too!