Planning a Children’s Party on a Budget

So Christmas is over and a new year has begun. I get very blue in January. So to beat this I start thinking about my son’s birthday in March. This year, my five going on thirty-five year old has decided that he wants to design his own birthday cake. As he described his diagram to me (yes, he drew a diagram!), I felt the blood drain from my face when I realised he thinks I’m capable of creating gravity defying showpieces with sugar-paste! He vastly over estimates my ability, but I just love that he thinks I’m able to make anything. In his eyes, I am wonder-mum, even though I know in many ways I’m not.

My son obviously has such high expectations. How do I manage that and keep to a decent budget? Thankfully, being five-turning-six, I can get away with a few shortcuts. I’m also thankful that I can dedicate some evenings to making decorations and the like in order to keep the costs down. So here are my budget (and busy mum) friendly tips to ensure that your five year old gets a really good birthday party.

Room Hire

Do an internet search of your local churches. Some independent churches (i.e. not those who belong to the Roman Catholic tradition or Church of England) have more modern buildings, more suitable for hosting and catering. Being charities, their rental rates are often much lower than community centres, pubs or working clubs. Find their contact details on their website and fire off an email. Don’t be afraid to haggle, but always leave the hall in the condition it was when you arrived.


This one does require some time on your part, so may not be suitable for people who are very busy. On the internet you can find quite cheap, plain coloured party packs of table ware, cutlery and party hats. You can then print out coloured pictures of your child’s party theme and glue them on to make cute, personalized party ware. (I wouldn’t recommend doing this with the plates though as you’ll be eating off them!). Investing in a small guillotine can make this process faster. There are also lots of free printables on the internet that you can find with a basic search. Type in “free printables party” along with the name of your child’s character.

Party Bags

Instead of wasting money on lots of small plastic toys that end up in the bin or up the vacuum cleaner the following week and are incredibly irritating for most parents, buy one gift that is much more substantial in bulk off the internet. Take the time to wrap this gift for your child’s guests. Accompanied with some sweets from a multipack tin from a budget supermarket and a bit of birthday cake, the kids will be incredibly excited that they were getting an actual wrapped gift.


Obviously, it goes without saying that the food is the star of the show in any party. Just Catering takes away all the hassle by providing delicious, healthy, kid-friendly food at very reasonable prices. We can cater for all dietary requirements and provide sweets and deserts too. Will also collect the packaging afterwards, so no recycling. Just phone us and let us help you make your child’s party a success.


How about checking out Icing World, our sister company, for the stunning showpiece birthday cake. Check them out at