Today I have Michelle from Print Quirks letting us in on her go to, easy eco party tips for busy mummas. I hope these tips can help inspire you lower the waste at your next kids party.
Who doesn’t love seeing their kiddo having a blast at a birthday party? Those excited laughs, kids racing around playing and sneaking in AAALLLL the extra lollies! Or is that just my kids? Surely not…
Planning the party, however, can sometimes feel next level, especially when, for the most part, Mumma is the one carrying the mental load of the family. Not to mention the epic post party clean up and placing those overflowing garbage bags in the bin. The amount of waste that seems to trail kids’ parties makes me feel a little ill, but having the mental energy to actually do something about it, well – that's hard too!
So, if you love to celebrate your special people but you also feel a little queasy at the mountains of party waste, check out these simple eco party tips. Guaranteed to cut down waste at your next kids party and not be labour intensive.
Borrow, Borrow, Borrow!
Often when you’re planning a party, particularly if it has a specific theme, you will immediately think about heading into a large Department store or browsing online for party props and matching decorations. The thing is, are you really likely to use these items again? or will they gather dust for a few years before they are guiltily thrown in the rubbish bin? Eeeek.
How about asking around and borrowing items instead? Let’s face it, lots of people have those guilty stashes they would be only too happy to see the items being re-used. You can ask family and friends, your neighbors or even on your local Buy Nothing Group (found on Facebook) to borrow specific décor items that match your party theme.
Throwaway paper and plastic cups or individually packaged juice poppers and bottled water have long been a staple at kid’s parties. Unfortunately, these can add up to quite a pile of plastic waste that may or may not end up being correctly recycled. Plus, sometimes little Jackson or little Dahlia have two sips of their popper before discarding it in favour of that great game of hide and seek chasey that just started. Sigh. Well, what about removing these disposable items from your party entirely?
Rather than purchasing a carton of poppers, that are often wrapped in even MORE plastic to secure them all together, how about purchasing a few large bottles of juice and serving it in the reusable cups you already have at home? If you’re worried about the kids mixing them up, you can always pop a little sticker dot on each cup with each child’s initials. If you don’t have enough of your own cups, you can kindly request guests to BYO a reusable cup for party drinks!
If you happen to already have a Soda Stream machine, you could go one step further – juice some oranges, fizz some water and make your own yummy party drinks. No need to purchase any plastic juice bottles.
Reusable serving ware from Party Kit Network
We don’t all have enough extra plates and bowls to serve the hungry hordes at a party. Before you reach for those paper plates on the supermarket shelf – have you heard of the Party Kit Network?
There are many mums around Australia (and internationally) running small businesses that hire out party kits containing reusable items like cups, plates, bowls, cutlery and sometimes drinks dispensers and platters.
Hiring a party kit means you’re saving party waste from landfill and supporting a fellow Mumma bear at the same time. Seems like a win-win situation to me!
Ah, the party bag. I may be old, but I don’t actually remember receiving a bag of stuff at the end of my friend’s parties when I was a kid. We all just had a blast at the party, shoved as much cake and lollies in as we could and headed out the door with a simple “Thanks for coming” from the party host. When did giving out bags of plastic stuff to all the guests even become a thing? I know my kids have always been given a party bag after every party they’ve attended. Most of which has eventually ended up discarded and in the bin.
So, the obvious eco party tip here would be to simply say: don’t give out party bags at all. Which is an option and one I have myself chosen at times. However, I also understand that many people feel pressured to do some kind of party bag or thank you gift, so here are some more eco friendly options.
You could hand out:
- Something edible such as an extra slice of birthday cake or a yummy biscuit
- A seed bomb or a small succulent in a pot
- A small wooden toy
- Homemade playdough or slime in a small jar
- A book or a
- DIY wizard or witches wand.
These are just some of the more ecofriendly options to choose as party bag gifts.
Rather than printed invitations that get lost or don't make it to the invited child via the childcare/school craziness - opt for a digital version instead. E-vites are easily editable with your own details and come in a whole range of fun themes.
Some eco party swaps can seem insignificant alone, however when we consider just how many parties are thrown worldwide every weekend (thousands? hundreds of thousands? millions?) and consider if every single party host made at least one eco swap, the impact can in fact be huge. Let’s make a difference together, one party at a time.
Michelle McMahon is a digital invitation designer at Print Quirks and an eco-conscious Mumma who wants to leave a better world for our children. She helps busy Mums that love to celebrate their special people, but hate party waste, throw amazing eco-friendly parties – Follow along here for eco party hacks and Mum life shenanigans. See more eco party tips from Michelle here.
Cover image from Partyora - creating stylish parties without the waste.