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Wedding Invitations

What Time Do You Put on a Wedding Invite?

Whose name should be placed first on the wedding invitation? Here is the answer you are looking for!

UPDATED ON December 08, 2023
Wedding Invitations

Three Ideas for Unique Wedding Invitations

I absolutely love a good wedding.  It’s not only the bride and groom who look forward to the big day – it’s also their guests

UPDATED ON December 08, 2023

How to Organise a Surprise Birthday Party

Organising a Surprise Birthday Party - Organising a Surprise Birthday Party - Chalkboard Layer Cake
Surprise birthday parties can be tricky to organise! Here are a few tips to help you plan a secret party.


Before you starting planning, think about what the birthday guest of honour wants. They might be planning their own birthday party, or even a celebratory holiday away. Perhaps they just want a quiet day to themselves. Think about whether your gesture will be appreciated or not! If you’re not a family member, ask relatives for their opinion. Once you’re sure a surprise party is a good idea, start planning. Traditionally, guests will wait for the birthday person to arrive and surprise them. But what if the guest of honour is shy or doesn’t like shocks? In this case, bring them to the party first and have guests show up one-by-one. The Card Gallery - Polka Dot Surprise Birthday Invitation Featured Design: 'Polka Dot Surprise Birthday Invitation' Pick out someone that will act as a guide during the day. It should be someone with whom the guest of honour feels comfortable. It will be their job to keep them occupied while the party is set up and guide them back in time for the surprise. If you’re holding the party at a house, the guide can take the birthday person out while you get ready. A trip to the cinema or shopping isn’t suspicious, especially on a birthday, and it ensures the guest of honour is booked for the day so they won’t make conflicting plans. It will also make a great birthday treat to put a smile on their face before the party’s even started! If the party is at a venue or restaurant, the guest of honour’s relatives make a good choice of guide. They can pretend they’re taking them for a meal or a day out, when they’re actually leading them to a party!

Food and Decorations

Plan the food and decorations as you would for any birthday party. Pick a theme, or use the person’s hobbies and interests as inspiration. You might even base it on a ‘surprise’ theme to reflect the party. Choose food and decorations that can be easily hid until it’s time to set them up. You don’t want the guest of honour to find them! Bunting and confetti are good choices as they can all be packed away and put up quickly. As for food, choose things that don’t require much preparation – it could cause problems if your guide’s timing is off. Pizza, crisps, and other party foods are a good choice. And of course, don’t forget the birthday cake! It looks great to have the candles burning in a dark room when the guest of honour enters. Happy Birthday Fairy Lights by Source Image: 'Happy Birthday Fairy Lights' from


There’s one big rule when writing surprise birthday party invitations – tell everyone it’s a secret! Make it clear so that no-one starts chatting to the guest of honour about their upcoming party. As with all birthday invitations, make the date, time, and location clear. It’s very important that people don’t show up when the birthday person is around! You might suggest a nearby car park for guests to use so the guest of honour won’t see their friends’ vehicles and get suspicious. Organising a Surprise Birthday Party - Organising a Surprise Birthday Party - Chalkboard Layer Cake Featured Design: 'Chalkboard Layer Cake Birthday Invitation'
Planning a Surprise Party - Shhhh!

Planning a Surprise Party - Shhhh!

You’ve seen them on your fav TV programmes: from Emmerdale to Friends, surprise parties are a staple of TV land. But, as the surprise party for ex-TOWIE, Mark Wright, recently showed, they can be great fun in real life too. Surprise parties may not be quite so common in the normal world, perhaps because they can be tricky to pull-off, but if you follow a few simple rules and plan it all well, they can be brilliant. Rule 1: Make sure everyone knows the party is secret. Send out invitations that tell guests it is secret. Make sure that if it is a family invitation they tell everyone in the family it is secret. I nearly put my foot in it lately when my hubby received a facebook invite to a surprise party. I very nearly posted a message on FB to say we were going. Make sure how to RSVP is clear. This is when you need .... Rule 2: Have an accomplice This is vital if you are arranging a surprise party for someone you live with. You may need someone to send invitations and make ‘phone calls. You will certainly need someone to receive RSVPs, whether by post, phone, email or text. The accomplice can also help with other arrangements: buying supplies, decorating the venue, providing an alibi etc. Rule 3: Make sure the person you are surprising is the right person at the right time This rule might seem a bit weird, but surprise parties are not for everyone. For instance: • some people just don’t like surprises. They like to be in control and usually do all the organising. • Other people who get really excited about birthdays will ensure they celebrate by making their own plans. They might be hurt if you appear to have forgotten their birthday, so you will need to either fit the surprise round them or do it before or after the actual day • Make sure they are dressed right – you will need to make sure the alibi fits in with the style of the event. A person who always likes to dress-up when going out will hate it if they turn up in trackies when everyone else is in their glad rags. Which leads us to:- Rule 4: Don’t make it too difficult Make the surprise party fit around something fairly normal. If you usually go out on a Friday night, fit it round that. If you like to go walking on a Sunday, meet friends for a surprise picnic. If the person you are surprising goes shopping with a friend on a Saturday have a surprise at the house when they get home. Rule 5: Don’t talk about the party Make sure everyone invited knows not to talk. Let as few people know about the party and arrangements as possible. Only talk about the party with your accomplice and get them to do the chasing. With those rules in place, you need a plan: 1) Book the venue if necessary 2) Work with your accomplice to get the guest list together and find all the contact addresses. 3) Send out invitations 4) Appoint a ‘babysitter’ – the person who will ensure the guest of honour gets to the party. Have at least 1 excuse up your sleeve – sometimes the original plan won’t work 5) Organise food, decorations, entertainment and who is going to organise it on the day 6) Once you have had replies let the guests who are coming know the arrangements – for instance they may need to be at the venue an 1 hour before the guest of honour is expected to arrive and they will need to hide their cars. 7) The ‘babysitter’ will need to ensure the person you are surprising is dressed right and ready to go – with a secret way of telling the guests that they are on the way. 8) Make sure someone acts as a host to your guests and keeps everyone informed on the night, then you can all surprise the guest when they arrive.