Planning a Milestone Birthday Party

June 11, 2015

Are you starting to think about planning your, your partner’s or perhaps a friend or other family member’s milestone Birthday party?

If so we hope these ideas might get you thinking and help kick off your planning.

Who will we invite?

Unlike a wedding, where lots of people tend to ‘advise’ and ‘suggest’ who should, and should not, be invited, with a milestone birthday party you are usually pretty much in a position to ask exactly whomsover you want (we hope).

Think about your budget and which elements are really important to you, then work out how many guests you can invite without diluting the overall look and feel and the experience you want people to leave having had.

Limit guest numbers a little, rather than settle for second rate, whatever that means in your particular case, ie food, drinks, music, venue etc.

This can be more difficult to get right if you are planning a surprise for a loved one, so think extra carefully if you are.

Milestone Birthday Party Lightings.jpg

Themes, Lighting and Decor

Having an overall theme can make your budget go further, as, rather than a completely eclectic mix of colours and looks, you can focus on making your venue, be it indoors or out, home, marquee or garden, look entirely in keeping. Colour washing with professional lighting can make a huge difference to the most basic of spaces and having an overall theme allows guests to get as involved as they wish.

When it comes to fancy dress, we tend to suggest you leave it optional, unless you are absolutely certain that all invitees are up for the whole dressing up shebang.

Milestone birthday party themed.jpg

What will people enjoy and remember about your party, and what matters most to you?

Is wonderful food important to you? Usually the answer is yes. Think however about whether you want or need a three course sit down meal. There are so many options these days, and often bowl food, a variety of food ‘stations’, Mediterranean platters in the middle of tables or great, substantial, themed canapes work better in a party environment.

If entertainment is key, think about whether it is just the music, or would a circus act, magician or themed entertainer add to the experience? These amazing little people at the MidSummer Ball we created with a client not only performed, but then mucked in and helped out as fun waiting staff both in ‘Shrek’s Swamp’ then again in ‘The Castle from Far, Far Away’.

If you are providing all the drinks, and have budgetary concerns, think about limiting options to 2 or 3 colour coordinated or ‘event specific’ cocktails, along with decent House type wines, a simple Prosecco and a couple of beer choices.

Milestone Birthday Party - ternevents

Two Final Tips…

We recommend you finish your party at a time when everyone is still enjoying it, rather than wait until people have started to drift home. You want them to remember having a fantastic time, not wondering when they could legitimately slip away.

..and whilst they are enjoying themselves, always consider having a professional photographer at a milestone party. Not only does it leave you free to chat, rather than constantly wielding your iPhone like fans at a concert, but it leaves you and your guests with brilliant images. Even ‘red carpet’ style photos of each guest arriving over the first hour can make all the difference – how often do we really dress up these days and get a chance to have a fab picture taken of ourselves? Your guests will adore you.

Happy planning all.


Photo Credits: Mark Wallis Lawrence Hylton



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