Planning a Surprise Party

Surprise parties can be so much fun and are often remembered for years to come. But it can be difficult keeping everything under wraps. It’s hard enough to plan a party and make all the necessary arrangements. When you have to do this in secret, it can be much harder. Follow these simple steps to the perfect surprise party.

Any party requires a certain amount of planning, but it is imperative for surprise parties. Not only do you have to make all the arrangements and preparations but it all needs to be done in secret. Therefore, leave yourself plenty of time.
Make a list and draft in friends and family to help. At this stage keep it ‘need to know’ and only tell people you can trust to keep it under wraps. Make sure everyone knows what they have to do and set deadlines. This may seem a bit bossy, but it is easier to manage if you have a timeline. This also ensures that you avoid stressful, last-minute situations.

A surprise party takes longer to arrange and so if you’re adopting a theme make sure this is done in the early stages of planning. This will inform all of your other arrangements including food, drink, decorations and outfits.
Let guests know as soon as possible about any dress code, especially if this is specific. If you’re planning fancy dress then consider the recipient’s interests. Does he / she have a favourite book or film? If so, you could ask guests to dress up as one of the characters. Imagine the surprise when everyone jumps out dressed as characters from The Godfather or in a Kill Bill costume etc. Historical events, eras and colours also make good themes.
You may wish to source an outfit for the person you’re surprising. They can change into it after the initial reveal.
Match the decorations to your theme, if you have one. Decide on whether to go for handmade or ready-made decorations. If you live with the person you’re surprising you will need to get them out of the house in advance to give you time to get everything in place.
Fooling the Star Guest
This is the tricky part. If the event is at home and if you live with the ‘star guest’, you will need to get them out of the house to give you time to set everything up. Enlist the help of a good friend to do this. You also need to keep in mind that they will be going to a party and will want to look their best. Therefore, you will need to hatch a plan where they think they’re going somewhere else so that they dress for the occasion. Even if you have an outfit for them to change into, they will still need to do their hair and makeup etc.
After the Party
Remember to thank everyone after the party. Take lots of photos and share them with guests. Read our top tips on reducing mess to allow for a simple tidy-up when the party comes to an end. After all that planning you won’t want to spend hours cleaning up.

Surprise parties can be difficult to plan and can fall a bit flat if the recipient becomes aware of the preparations. But if you plan carefully and make sure everyone is on-side, you will have a fun night you will never forget.

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