Details are so important to any event no matter how big or small, how cheap or expensive. Details are what people will remember. I do not remember exactly what I did after I got up this morning and started getting dressed, but I do remember the centerpiece at my friend's wedding. Adults especially need aesthetics to trigger memory. This is why when you are planning an event, you cannot skimp on the details. Does this mean that you have to go spend a ton of money on vases? No. You can still have fantastic, eye-catching details on a budget. These are definitely not in order of importance because they are ALL important.
1. Fantastic Centerpieces
This was a centerpiece for a wedding that had two main themes: Literature because one bride is an English major, writer, and teacher, and Lovebirds because the other bride is a huge animal enthusiast. These details got lots of compliments. The books were borrowed, the baby's breath was bought at Winn Dixie in a bundle for about $3.50. The ribbons were bought at Dollar Tree, and the little wooden shapes were bought in a big bag at Michael's for around $10, and they were used in multiple places.
This centerpiece was for a birthday party that was all about color and fun! The paper and pens were for a trivia that was put together for the birthday boy! Everything came from Dollar Tree. This centerpiece cost $4.75 to make, and all of the guests gave rave reviews!
Many venues come equipped with lighting, but something that should be considered is back-lighting. Look for my post on creating back-lighting coming soon!
It's important to pay attention to lighting even if you don't have a venue with good lighting. You can always use candles and other smaller lights to create ambiance in the place of fluorescent lighting, which should NEVER be used unless it's in a hospital.
If your venue does not have good lighting, think outside the box and create some simple light fixtures using string lights and materials that are easy to hang or drape.
It goes without saying that music is a must at any event. Remember when planning your music, you get what you pay for. If you plan to simply hook up a bluetooth speaker and let it go, you may find yourself in a pickle! Make sure that you download a long enough playlist that you're not rushing over to change songs continuously. Also, make sure that the music is appropriate for the event and the audience. I personally like 90s Grunge like Nirvana and Bush, but not everyone enjoys these! You want your event to be a great experience, so consider your crowd!
If you are hiring someone to play music, take it from a DJ (yes, I DJ!) that we want to know what you want. Don't say, "I trust you," and then try to micromanage the music during the event. Be clear. Send a playlist. And, remember: YOU GET WHAT YOU PAY FOR.
4. Themed Food
YESSS, please...remember that details matter, and PEOPLE REMEMBER FOOD!!! Theming your food does not have to be extravagant, and it can actually help you make decisions about it easier.
Since this party was all about being colorful and having fun, the menu items were chosen to be colorful finger foods! It was that simple!
Another way to add pizzazz is to let your desserts add to the decor! Painting serving trays the color of the theme, having themed toppings, all of these small details make a HUGE difference!
5. Signature Cocktails
If you really want to WOW your guests, add a fun signature drink to the menu. Again, this does not have to be extravagant. You can add a splash of lime to cranberry and vodka and call it "Tipsy Twang" or something that goes with the theme of the event!
Events are all about experience...big or small! If you can, utilize some of your local talent. They will often come out for an hour for a reasonable cost! I recently procured some drag queens to come to an event, and it was totally worth it! They were definitely crowd pleasers!
Local artists are also often looking for ways to showcase their talents! Some other entertainment options include having someone dress up for a photo opp, having someone sing/dance, etc. Be creative and bring the fun!
7. Photo Opportunities