I thought it might be helpful to try a new “party planning challenge” series where I walk you through the steps in planning a party. What do you think? Please let me know in the comments below.

In the next week or so, let’s plan a 4th of July party together – sound good? To help, be sure to sign up to receive my 4-Week Party Planner. We’ll go through these basic steps. You can complete one step a day, or go through the steps more quickly, if you like.

Getting Started

Given that we’re planning a holiday party, some of our typical first steps are taken care of. You know your theme and party date. For our purposes, I’m going to assume you’re hosting your party at home. But, you’ll still need to pick what time of day you want your guests to attend.

  • Will this be an all-day, hang out playing yard games or swimming party?
  • Or will it be a casual dinner party followed by fireworks?
  • The time and length of your party is up to you, but the decision will make a difference to your budget and menu.
  • Will guests be both inside and outside? With the summer heat, I’ll assume the answer is “yes.”

Party Budget

I always want you to establish a party budget, because it drives so many of your other decisions.

  • If your budget is tight,you’ll want to look for free printables and take a DIY route for most decisions.
  • If your budget is more comfortable, you may be able to opt for a few investment pieces and to purchase more services.

As we go along, I’ll try to make both budget-friendly and budget-roomy suggestions.

Guest List

How big will your party be? Will it be a few neighbors or a big family bash and all of your kids friends? Your guest list should be determined by several things:

  • Your budget – how many guests can you afford to feed?
  • Your space – how many guests will comfortably fit inside and out?
  • Write down your list by family and count the total number of adults and kids. Also make sure you jot down addresses (or, if you must email addresses) for sending invitations.

Now for Some Fun Stuff

Hooray you! You made it through the party fundamentals, so now you get to do some of the fun stuff … and we’ll get started with that in the next post. And from there, we’ll go back and forth between fundamentals and more fun stuff.

In the meantime, here are some 4th of July parties from the archives:

If you’re planning along with this series, I’d love to hear how your progress is going. Be sure to let me know in the comments below. And of course, don’t forget to grab your free 4-Week Party Planner.

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