Woman pouring drinks

Planning a big party, like your Sweet 16 is something that takes organization and preparation to make sure everything goes just as you wanted.  Similarly to weddings, it’s typically not an event you want to throw together at the last minute – especially if you’re planning a party that’s on a larger scale.  So if you’re in the process of  planning a party, like a Sweet 16 bash, we’re going to go through what many event planners suggest as a twelve-month planning guide to help get you organized so your party goes off without a hitch.

Twelve Months Out
The very beginning stages of your party are going to require you to  set a date and time for your party.  These are crucial so you’re able to get the ball rolling.  During this time you’re also going to want to narrow down your desired theme, venue(s) of choice and any major entertainment you want for your big day.  These are huge steps in planning your event, so getting these things in place will help the rest of the details fall into place more easily.

4-6 Months Out
Now that you’re getting closer to the event it’s time to make/order the invitations you’ll be using to send to attendees, figure out what food/drink options you’re going to have at your party, and start shopping/finding decorations and miscellaneous items to fit into your chosen theme for the party.  This is also the suggested time to start thinking about if you want to give out party favors to your attendees and if so, what?  And finally during this time you’re going to want to seek out/place desired help on your day like photographers, videographers, caterers, etc.

2-4 Months Out 
As it’s now getting closer to your party, it’s time to send out the invitations to your guest list.  In addition, you’re going to want to make sure you’ve secured any items that need to be rented out for your event.  This time span from the event is also a wise time to start putting together the finishing touches on your agenda for the evening, when guests will be eating, any games/activities, etc.

3-6 Weeks Out 
Now it’s getting even closer to the event you’re going to want to purchase anything that is necessary for the party that are non-perishable items, create a list of everything that you have left that you need to purchase, determine the number of expected attendees, buy thank you notes if you plan to send them out after the event, and lock down your outfit for the big day.

1-4 Weeks Out
It’s starting to get down to crunch time so during this time you need to secure the seating chart and/or floor plan in relationship to the chosen venue.  This is also the time you want to go over your list, make sure you’ve purchased everything needed to fit into your theme and otherwise.  Additionally, it’s a great time to confirm all hired assistance like photographers, entertainment, food, etc.

1-2 Days Out
Your party is just days away, which means you’re going to want to make sure you’ve got all your contracted help on your speed dial.  Of course, you want to make sure all the rented items have been picked up, everyone has been paid, everything has been purchased and set up.  You’re ready to party!