The Ultimate Guide To Party Decorating 

How To Decorate Your Party

This is the ultimate guide to party decorating. You will find lots of tips , ideas and how to’s to make your party decorating that little bit easier. Decorating your party can be simple or you can go all out. There are many factors to consider when it comes to party decorating. The main factors that will influence your party decorating is your time, how much work you want to do and your budget. The main factor to consider is what sort of party experience do you want to create.

The first thing to think about when it comes to party decorating is who is the party for? Whether you are planning the party for yourself or someone else what is the end result you want. If the party is for someone else make sure you have a good idea on what sort of party they want to create. Ask them lots of questions on what they do and dont like when it comes to party decorations and what sort of party atmosphere they want. 

Why Is Decorating Your Party Important

winter wonderland

To create a great party experience for your guests its all about stimulating your guests 5 senses. Party decorating is the best way to do this and set the right mood for the type of party atmosphere you want.. Decorating you party well will change how your guests feel for the better if it stimulates their senses in the right way. Going to some effort with your party decor will also help create a great party story for your guests to tell. Most importantly it will create a party to remember.

The amount of decorating you do , the colours you choose and the layout of your decorations will all have an impact on your guests party experience. At Feel Good Events we usually find the more decorating you do the better the experience.

Do It Yourself Or Hire A Party Decorator

This is a really important decision as party decorating can take a lot of time especially if you want to do it well. There are both advantages and disadvantages to both of these but usually it comes down to your party budget. If you have the money, hire expert party decorators to design and decorate your event for you. They will not only save you time and stress but in most cases they will create a better end result as they are decorating experts. If you are looking for custom decorations deigned and made, a party decorator will have the skill and contacts to help do this.

Going down the do it yourself option or (DIY) may save you money but you do need to value your time. It may cost you a lot more time in both sourcing decorations and installation of your party decor if you want to go all out. The set up of your party decorations if you are going all out will always take longer than you think if you havent done it before. The main reason most people choose DIY is their budget. Another reason is they also dont really see much value in party decorations and what they can add to the party.

What Outcome Do You Want To Achieve With Your Party Decorating

It is really important from the beginning to know what outcome you want to achieve with your party decorating. By this I mean how do you want your guests to feel when they are at your party. Everything you use to decorate your party venue and the colours you choose will effect your guests mood. If you have a clear idea of this from the beginning it will help guide you in the right direction.

For me when I am planning a party for myself or clients I want the guests to experience different feelings. This will help make to make the party more exciting. Ultimately I want the guests to feel good and create a happy atmosphere. I also like to mix it up so that it is a unique experience as well. You can do this by choosing lighting that colours can be changed easily throughout the night. If possible I like reveal new areas of the party at different times so that something new is happening all the time. This is all dependent on the size of your party space and budget but it can help create a great experience.

Where To Find Inspiration For Your Party Decorating

Finding party decoration inspiration is always the fun part to planning your party. Looking at inspiration pictures and videos will help you decide what party theme or style you want to create. To start with you can always check out our party themes page if you are not quite sure. Party Theme Ideas

The most popular place for alot of party inspiration is Pinterest. There are so many different types of party themes and styles to really get your creative juices flowing. You can create your own mood boards which will help in choosing different types of decorations once you have decided on your theme or style. The other easy and usual places to look for party inspiration would be google images , instagram and facebook. Partyslate is another great website for party inspiration. Partyslate is an American based directory but has lots of great images and ideas.

Choose a Party Theme or Style

Choosing a particular party theme or style will make planning your party so much easier. It will give you more direction on what party props to use, colours to choose and even what dress code to have. Not everyone wants a certain party theme but even choosing a party style will make everything easier from the beginning. Choosing a style or theme will usually make the party atmosphere more fun and is a great way of showing your personality. Infusing your personality into your party decorations will help make your party more unique and personal.

The other great thing about choosing a party theme is that your decorations choice can be your own interpretation of that theme. At Feel Good Events we might do 10 Hollywood party themes in a one year but they can all be different. The venue style and layout , clients budget and their personality will all influence the outcome. Some themes or styles will be easier to do than others and less expensive. If you are wanting something easy and less expensive choose a more popular theme as party decorations will be more readily available.

Decoration Display or Full Party Theming

So what do I mean by display or full party theming? By display I mean that you might just create a small area with decorations to try and create the right mood. Full theming means that you have transformed and decorated your whole party venue in your chosen theme or style. Full theming will help to create a fully immersive party experience. The photos above shows a display on the left and full room party styling on the right.

Quite often displays are created just a for a photo backdrop as guests arrive or for a more low key event. Party displays are often chosen as the party planner or host also has a very low budget. Full theming is the way to go if you have the time and budget. Hands down it will create a better party experience and definitely make it more memorable. 

Do Your Party Decoration Research And Set A Budget

One of the most common questions we get asked as party and wedding decorators is how much does a certain theme cost. There are so many variables that determine costs so this is where you need to do your research. I would suggest that until you have done some research into what things cost you cant really set your budget. You might think that you only want to spend $1000 on you decorations but then realize this wont even get you close to creating the atmosphere you want.

So how do you start to determine costs for your party decorations? The first thing to do is find party hire companies that will hire the items you need. Our Hire Products page will help you find pricing for party props , party decorations and more. Once you have found what you need from the different suppliers you then need to contact these suppliers to get costs on delivery and installation. In a lot of cases the installation costs can be way more than the hire costs especially if you are wanting to create something unique. If the hire company allows DIY on the items you want this may save on labor costs but do value your time. Also consider if you have the necessary skills to create the look you are going for with your party decorating.

Choose Your Party Venue

Vintage venue

When it comes to deciding on a party venue and theme its a bit like what comes first, the chicken or the egg. Your party venue will have an influence on your party theme especially if it has its own unique style. I usually like to choose the party theme first and then find a function venue to match. If you are planning a full immersive theme a blank canvas venue is the way to go. In this case you may just opt to hiring the local hall or a venue that is less expensive as you will be changing the look of the venue anyway.

If you already have your venue chosen from the beginning because of other factors make sure you choose a theme that will fit the style of the venue. There is no point in choosing a function space that has a 1920’s feel if you are wanting to have a jungle party theme. Blank space venues can make it easier to decorate but may also cost more money as you will need more decorations. If you can find a function venue that will enhance your theme it may make things easier and less expensive.

Important things to consider when choosing your venue is can you do the type of decorations you want. Will the venue allow you to decorate the room and how much time will they allow. Another key thing to consider which may add alot of extra cost is can you access the function space easily. If your function space is not ground level your labour costs will definitely go up.

Choose A Colour Scheme For Your Party Decorations

Choosing colours for your party decorating can be easier if you have a particular theme or style in mind. If you are going for more of a style and want something like a pink party or white party colour choice will be easy. Most party themes usually have there own unique colours that suit that theme to make it easier for choice. 

For example a Hollywood theme usually has the colours of red, gold and black. This makes decoration choice easier as everything you choose can be in these colours. You dont however need to always go with traditional colours. Some of the best decorated parties are ones that have their own unique slant on things.

We usually suggest at Feel Good Events that if you are creating your own unique style that you typically dont use more than 3 different colours. This will keep things more simple and make it easier to find decorations in your colour choice.

How To Decorate Your Party

labour-set-up-fge

So what do you need to think of when it comes to actually decorating your party venue?. There are so many variables around this as it will depend on your venue size and your budget. To keep things simple I usually suggest starting with the important fundamental items first. Once you have the basics in place you can then move on to the more styling side of things. You need to look at party decorating like making a pizza. You start with the base and then add the sauce and cheese and layer things on top from there. Decorating is the same, start with the basics and add from there.

When I talk about the decorating fundamentals the items below are what I am referring to and I always use as my starting point. Again depending on the venue will depend on what and how many of these things you need. If we start with the fact that you have a very basic venue and dont want to really see much of it this is what I suggest.

Draping – I would normally drape all or most of the walls in a material and colour that suits the theme or style you are wanting. This by itself will instantly change the look and feel of the room. 

Dance Floor – Unless the floor is suitable for dancing and it suits the theme I would bring in a dance floor. A dance floor will also stop the venue’s floor from getting damaged where everyone is dancing.

Furniture and Bar – Furniture in a style and colour that adds to your party theme. Some venues may have furniture you can use but others might not have furniture that suits the look you want.

Lighting – Mood and party lighting to add colour and help theme your party and create the right mood.

These 4 items above alone will dramatically change the look and feel of your venue. Again depending on the size of your venue these 4 items could cost quite a bit of your budget and at this point you havent really got any decorations.

We then move on to the things that will really start to theme or style your party. These are the items that make your party unique and create the theme or look you want. When working out your decorating budget you really need to have 2 parts to it. One for the decorating fundamentals above and one for the styling decorating products below.

Below are just some of the items you can use to decorate your party.

Themed Backdrops – Backdrops that will start to create the party theme you want.

Party Props – Props can be big and small but it is always good to have a main feature prop.

Styling Products – This can be anything from mirrors to candles and all the smaller items.

Flowers and Greenery – Bring the outdoors in with artificial plants and flowers.

Table Decor – Everything from table linen to table centrepieces will help style your party

All these items above will help you create a really great party and how much of each you use will determine your costs.

How To Decorate If You Are On A Tight Budget

rustic outdoor low table setting

Decorating on a tight budget is always a common question and is also influenced by many factors. The look you are wanting to achieve, the size of your venue and the party theme you want will all affect budget. Every ones idea of a tight budget is different. For some it might be $1000 on decorations and for others it may be $10,000.

If you are on a tight budget there are some things you can do to bring costs down. Firstly you could use more disposable decorations as these are typically cheaper. You can choose to make your own party props out of recycled products if you have the time. You can do as much work as possible when it comes to set up and pack down of your decorations. Choose a venue that already suits your party theme so you need less decorations.

You can choose to create a display instead a full immersive theme as mentioned earlier. You can decorate only certain areas that the guests will be in the most. This could be above or around the dance floor as guests are hopefully in this area the most. The most important thing to remember if decorating on a budget is what impact will the decorations you have chosen have on your party. Make sure you spend money on decorating areas that will have the most influence on your guests and create a better experience.

Create A Design Plan and Floor Plan For Your Party

It is really important to create a design and floor plan from the very beginning. This will not only save you time and money but it will also help create a stress free party. Creating a design early on will help you with your party vision and what needs to be done. It will also help establish what products you will need to hire or buy and costs involved. Creating a design from the beginning will also help you work out how much work is involved and what you will need help with.

Floor plans can be a simple thing to do but there is more to it than where should you set up the bar and furniture. The floor plan you choose will influence where your guests are at the party. It will also have a big impact on your guests experience either for the better or worse. This is where if you have the budget an expert partyolgist can make sure you get it right. Check out our Partyology service if you want help with this.

Hire Party Decorations or Buy Disposable Decorations

paper lanterns hanging from a roof

When thinking about your party decorations you need to decide what types you will use. For some party themes it may be hard to find disposable products and the same with hired props. Disposable decorations are usually easier to source but can also be quite simple with less impact.

For most parties decorations usually consist of a mix of both disposable and hired props and decor. The advantage of disposable decorations is in most cases they are cheaper to buy but not great for the environment. If you are trying to be environmentally friendly hired decorations and props are the way to go. 

Hired Party Decorations Checklist - The Basics

alice in wonderland party theme decorations

If you are choosing to hire decorations rather than buy , below is a general list of things to think about. Depending on your venue and theme you may only need some or all of these types of items. Click on the links to find a massive range of hire products to help decorate your party.

Party Draping
Mood lighting
Party Lighting
Dance floors
Furniture hire 
Themed Props
Table Decorations
Decorating & Styling Products
Video Screens

Disposable Party Decorations Checklist

party balloons and decorations in melbourne

If you are choosing to buy all your party decorations, below is a list of common items used. You can also click on the links below for the best places to buy disposable party decorations from if you live in Melbourne or Australia.

Balloons – Helium, Balloon Garlands, Themed Foil Balloons
Tinsel – Curtains and hanging tinsel
Streamers – Paper and tinsel
Table Decorations – Cups, Plates, Napkins, Table Cloths, Centrepieces
Candles – Real and LED
Hanging Decorations – Banners and signs , Bunting, Lanterns, Garlands, Tissue Balls
Cardboard Cut outs – Themed props and cutouts
Confetti

The Best Places In Melbourne To Buy Disposable Party Decorations In Store And Online 

Poppies For Grace
Lombards
Spotlight
The Party People
Discount Party Warehouse

Using Fresh Or Artificial Flowers In Your Party Decorating

floral display on a table for a wedding

Fresh or artificial flowers are a great way to decorate your party. Flowers are a great addition as a table centrepiece or to help enhance a display. One of the other great benefits of real flowers is they add the sense of smell. This is great if you are wanting to stimulate your guests senses for that overall party experience. The downfall of fresh flowers can be the that they can be expensive and dont last that long.

Artificial flowers have the added bonus of being able to hired and re used. You can create truly spectacular decorations using artificial flowers and plants on a large scale on a smaller budget. Flowers are also a great way to help colour scheme your party and most importantly make your guests feel good.

Table Decorations And Centrepiece's

weddings

If you are planning a dinner party or even a cocktail party you may want to consider some table decorations. If you have a large scale event with lots of large tables dont under estimate the impact table centrepieces can make. If done well table decorations can really add to the overall look and feel of your party. If you are on a tight budget and you are planning a dinner party centrepieces should be your main priority.

If you have a particular party theme you can create something that will match the theme. If your theme is more of a style items like flowers and candles will always work well. When creating or hiring centrepieces always consider the height so that they dont block your guests view or make it hard to talk.

Use The Right Lighting To Enhance Your Decorations

Hollywood lighting projection on a wall

I could go on for hours about how important lighting is when decorating your party. It is one of the easiest and cheapest ways to create a difference in any function space. No matter what your party theme or style is, the right lighting done in the right way will improve the look of your party. I have run tests on both clients and staff showing them images of decorated party set ups. In 100% of people tested the images that had better lighting were rated the highest over images without.

Lighting can be used in multiple ways throughout your party. It can be used to highlight props or certain areas of your event space. Lighting can also be used to enhance your guests mood. Your guests moods can be changed by changing the colours during the night. Party lighting can be used to add a sense of excitement and energy if they are moving and flashing around. All this adds to the over all feel and look of your party decorations.

You can also hire special effect lights which may help in the theming of your event at a reasonable cost. Check out our lighting hire options to get inspired.

Allow Plenty Of Time To Set Up Your Party

wedding decoration set up

The biggest mistake that can be made when party decorating is under estimating how long it can take to set everything up. If you have the option try and spread you decorating out over multiple days to make it easier. This may also help you establish any issues they may arise early on in your party decorating. If you only have your function venue for one day this may drastically change what you do and how you do it. If you only have your venue for one day then this may also add considerable costs if getting in event decorators.

I usually suggest to go through each area of your venue that you plan to decorate and allocate an estimated time to it. If you plan to decorate the entrance way for example look at what you have planned and guess how much time this will take. If you do this for all areas of your party and then add them all together this will give you a good idea on a time frame. Once you have your estimated total time I would strongly suggest to allow more time just in case things dont go as planned.

The good new is if it takes you less time you will be set up nice an early and can relax before the party starts.

Make Sure You Have Enough Help For Your Decoration Set Up

To make the whole process of decorating your party easier and stress free you have a few options. Firstly you can hire in professional party decorators if you have the budget. This will make sure everything is done on time and at a good standard ensuring a better end result. If you are on a tight budget ask friends and family members to help out. 

Setting up and decorating a party is usually quite physical so make sure you get help from friends and family that are up to the task. We had a client once who roped in their father in law to help set up and he ended up having a heart attack as he over did it. While this isnt a regular thing that might happen it is definitely something to consider when choosing helpers.

Equipment You Will Need To Set Up Your Party Decorations

ladder for party decorating

Not only do you need to think about all the decoration you might need when planning your party but you also need to think about the items you will need to set things up. Depending on what decorations you have you may or not need some of the following items.

Below is a general list of items you may need to help decorate your party.

Ladders – Big and small
Drills
Scissors
Cable cutters
Gaffa tape – In multiple colours usually black and white
Clear Tape
Cable Ties – In different Colours
Fishing Wire
Hooks – Both screw and 3M reusable hooks
Floral foam – for flower displays
Chicken Wire – For Floral displays
String and Twine – In different colours
Thumb Tacks
Rope – Various Colours

How To Decorate Your Party Without Walls

party decorations with rigging and truss

If you are wanting to decorate your party without attaching decorations to walls there are multiple of ways to do it. This might be necessary if the venue is very fussy or worried there event space might get damaged. Setting up your decorations without attaching to walls will also save on potential costs caused by damage to the venue.

So what are the options to setting up your decorations?

Draping – Alot of people ask how this is done. Drapes are very easy to set up without attaching to walls. They can be set up on drape rigging which can be adjusted both in height and width. The good thing about drape rigging or auto poles is they can be placed anywhere you want in your function venue.

Hanging Decorations – When it comes to hanging any type of decorations or creating floral installations for example we would suggest trussing. This item comes in multiple shapes and sizes and can be put together to create strong heavy duty structures. These truss structures can then be used for all sorts of decorating options.

Make Your Food Part Of Your Decorating

Rustic and tropical grazing table white drape backdrop hire melbourne

In the last few years food is really starting to become part of people’s party decorating. Large grazing tables for both finger food and desserts is super popular. People are creating awesome displays with their food and then using other props to help decorate and create something that is a bit of wow factor.

You can choose to do these yourself if you are creative or there are plenty of companies around now offering this type of service. At Feel Good Events we work with multiple of these types of companies so contact our office if you would like us to organize it for you.

Party Decoration Clean Up

party cleaners in melbourne cleaning up after a party

So you have had a wild party, celebrated one of your life’s milestones and hopefully everyone has had a great night. You have now come to the fun part of packing down all your hard work that has taken hours to organize and set up. Depending on your venue you may have alot or only a short amount of time to do this. The advantage of having your party at home is it usually allows you more time to clean up and pull down decorations.

If you have hired a a function venue best case scenario you will need to pack down everything the next day. Worst case scenario you will need to do it after your event on the night which isnt that fun. I always suggest to check this from the very beginning of you planning with the venue as this catches people out quite often. It is very common for venues to spring this on the hirer at the last moment which then adds extra stress and costs.

The good news is pack down in most cases is alot quicker than set up. If you have the budget hire people to do this for you as you will be glad you did.

Conclusion

So as you can see from the above this really is the party decorating ultimate guide.  As you can see there really is alot to do and think about when it comes to party decorating. The important thing is to enjoy the process and try not to stress. This will only happen if you start planning early and maybe get some expert help if you are still unsure how to go about it. If you work on these sections one at a time it wont seem so over whelming and you wont miss anything important.

Parties should be fun and decorating is super important in helping create a fun and memorable experience.

Party Decorating In Melbourne

If you are looking for party decorators in Melbourne look no further than Feel Good Events. We can help you plan your party , decorate your function space and hire to you everything you need.

Contact us today if you would like your party decorated by party experts.