It has only been a little over a month since I celebrated my son’s 16th birthday and today we are celebrating my step-daughter’s 16th birthday. It is such a bittersweet day, because gone are the days of dress-up and playing house, Barbie and Dolls, replaced now with music and cd’s, hair and make-up, cool clothes and shoes, hanging out at the mall or a movie with friends. I love seeing her grow into herself, into the young woman she is turning into, but I can’t help but be a little wistful for the playful, innocence of ‘yesterday’. In honor of her 16th birthday I am doing a week of posts on cheap 16th birthday party ideas. Not every Sweet 16 has to be $1000’s of dollars like the media would like you to believe.
Here are a few ideas to get you started, but be sure to check back all week for some creative themed 16th party ideas.
- make your own invitations and envelopes
- make your own decorations, depending on your theme you can probably find a lot of stuff at the dollar store.
- Either make your own cake, or have a plain cake made at the bakery and decorate it yourself. See this picture? You can do something really similar for under $30 or more elaborate for around $50-75. This cake is roughly about $150.
- Plan age appropriate games that center around the theme of the party.
- Host the party somewhere inexpensive. If you are excepting a lot of people, look into renting out a church basement or community center – your cheapest options. If you aren’t having a lot of people, consider hosting it at someones house, backyard, the park or somewhere else outside.
- Have a slumber party instead of a daytime party. Have the party goers arrive around 8pm (after dinner) and provide homemade snacks, cake and ice cream, beverages and then you can do a cheap breakfast like donuts, or pancakes. (make your pancakes from scratch to save some money). Play games (board games or Wii), play hide and seek in the dark in your yard, you’d be amazed at the fun this age group can have.
- Don’t go overboard on matching plates, napkins, etc. Just use your own dishes and pop them in the dishwasher to get them clean. Or buy a bulk package of paper plates to keep clean up to a minimum.
Do you have any cheap ideas for 16th birthday parties? Please share with us.
Happy 16th Birthday Vanessa! I hope it’s as special as you are. We love you!