There’s something truly joyful about bringing groups of my favorite people together and watching the interactions. Sometimes it can be a challenge to get cozy friend groups to open up to new people, but just in the past year, my co-party planners and I have come across a really fun solution that I’m calling Party Starters. For two recent events, a 60th birthday bash (with over 150 people in attendance) and a baby shower, we’ve given this idea a try with great results. They are kind of like name tags, taken to a higher level—a non-tacky, non-structured ice-breaker, and a way that guests can share a bit about themselves and start easy conversations with each other.
For Jeanne’s recent birthday bash, my co-party planner and I ordered personalized labels to wear as badges and use as conversation starters. The badges read something like this, with individual responses penned by the guests themselves in permanent marker:
“My name is ______.”
“I’ve known Jeanne for ____ years!”
“I love it when Jeanne _________”
“Jeanne is my ________.”
It was fun to see how people used the opportunity to write funny or creative things on their tags. Delightfully, it was easy to mingle with everyone at the party, despite wide age and interest ranges, because everyone had several conversation starting points.
For the recent baby shower of a dear-to-me mother-to-be I ordered personalized labels for another set of Party Starters. To make these special baby shower badges, we wrote slightly different conversations starters:
“My name is _________”
“Regarding babies I’m especially good at _________”
“__________ is just one of my hopes for Mama and Baby.”
I also threw in “Yay for Brooklyn” on a darling heart shape, just for kicks.
After we had the text written, I picked a label style at evermine.com that reflected the lighthearted nature of the baby shower we were planning. Then I paired each message with a shape design that could accommodate it. My order included a few special design requests because I knew exactly where I wanted blank space on the label or which of the fonts I wanted to be used. At each of the events, we set out these labels and a few permanent markers near the door where the guests entered to create a welcoming activity for guests.
The labels pictured here are in the Lady Bug style in aruba in the rectangular, small rectangular, small heart and square shapes (sizes 05, 03, 24 and 1B).
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