Throw That Party! (And Don’t Let Pinterest-Pressure Stop You): The Home Hour, Episode 70

Thinking of throwing a party? Just do it!  (And don’t let Pinterest-Pressure stop you!)

On Episode 70 Graham and Kirsten chat with party planner, Traci Chandler, owner of Oh Sugar! Event Design & Paperie about all things party planning.

Here are some beautiful party pics to get you in the mood for hosting! (And so many more on her facebook page)!

Since all three of us are moms, we first had to ask Traci about Children’s Birthday Parties! Have things become too over the top when it comes to kid’s parties? (Spoiler Alert: Traci says we asked the wrong person and she never thinks anything is “too much”)  But in all seriousness, Traci tells us that if we do go to one of those outlandish parties, just enjoy it and be grateful for the experience! Don’t feel pressure to compete with that party. Just do what you feel comfortable doing!

Traci tells us a great story about what happened when the local train-park party venue accidentally double-booked her date and she had to make her own train parade at home for her daughter.

DIY Trains ready to be decorated:

Neighborhood Train Parade! 

Traci’s 4 steps to throwing a great party:

Step 1: Pick a theme.  This is the jumping off point and will help you lay the groundwork everything that follows.

Step 2: Invitations. Traci is a fan of paper invitations because it sets the tone for a party and is almost like providing a little gift for your guests right from the beginning. She says that paper invites don’t need to cost a fortune and recommends Etsy, Minted, & Tiny Prints as some great resources for invitations.

Step 3: Decor! Traci admits that this is where the time is spent because every party is different and each space is different. You don’t have to go crazy, but put in a little extra effort to make the space look special.  

STREAMERS= Always a good idea!

Step 4: Plan food, fun drinks, and activities

A Little Ice Cream Social

We talk about how Kirsten first discovered Traci’s business when she realized that the annual ice cream social fundraiser at her daughter’s preschool had suddenly become one of the best parties in town! Of course it turned out that Traci had been in charge of the event and had been using her expertise to make it incredible!

DIY Carnival Games from the last few Ice Cream Socials

We also discuss grown-up parties!

Traci gives us some great advice to just let the stress go! Don’t let Pinterest intimidate you into not hosting. Traci shares great tips about hosting adults with kids such as hiring a sitter and setting up a kids “bring a sleeping bag” room!

Traci shares some fun ideas for adult parties but also says that while a special cocktail or fun food item is always great… you don’t have to go as crazy for adult parties because parents are just glad to be out of the house!

We talk about NEW TRENDS with Traci!

  • Tassle Garlands are the next big thing in decor!
  • Hiring a mixologist is also a fun idea! Just go to a local bar and ask a bartender if they can come to your party for one night. 
  • The same idea can also work for a chef and this can be a money saving tip as this is often less expensive than hiring a caterer!
  • Traci shares a great idea about going to a local higher-end grocery store with a sushi bar and hiring the sushi chef to make sushi at a party.

We also talk about what is OVER in party-planning:

  • Chocolate Fountains are definitely done!  (Although Graham wants to argue that!)
  • Traditional ballrooms are taking a back seat to cool venues like downtown warehouses and AirBnB rental houses
  • Photo Booths are are pretty over but  “Photo Stations” with a fun backdrop are much better (and Traci recommends DIYing this!)

Getting Gracious with Graham!

In out special monthly segment, we dig into one of Graham’s FAVORITE books… the United States Protocol Book!  Strange…we know.  But we do learn about the history of seating assignments and the Vienna Convention of 1868.

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