The Picture-Perfect Party Problem

picture perfect tea theme party picture

Planning a large scale picture perfect party is a hassle in itself. Congratulations on your reason to celebrate but now you can begin to worry about the whos, whats, wheres, whens, and hows of party planning. You have to consider who to invite, and more importantly, who not to invite. The venue and food need to facilitate the guest list. The timing needs to accommodate everyone.

And the decor! Everyone on social media seems to have such lovely well-put affairs. Pinterest and Instagram are easy sources of inspiration to create the perfect ambiance of a good time. However, they come with a steep, steep, price. We are swept up by the sheer perfection that is poised in those posts and feel pressured to replicate the costly, yet dainty, tea party-themed bridal showers and the headache inducing yet marvelous, superhero birthday parties.

Sometimes the inclination to have everything look picturesque is so overwhelming that we forget that our friends are not props for the party.

I understand the inclination to have a fully decorated and themed party. It’s fun and adds another dimension and character to a get-together. The DIY party blogs, however, do little to expose the amount of trouble and cash it takes to achieve the final look. It is difficult to find and coordinate decor of one color. Ask anyone who’s tried to wear two items of black clothing- it’s not an easy match!

And from finding complementary cutlery and candles to arranging a statement backdrop, the cost adds up. It may never be said to the host, but guests always find it inconvenient when there’s a dress code attached to a theme party. It may look great in the pictures but it is annoying and comes with a literal price.

We need to focus on the ambiance of togetherness instead of the visuals.

With the rising inclusion of technology in daily life, there’s no way to miss any bash. There are hashtags and Snapchat filters to encourage everyone to post. With such transparency no one wants to be caught with confetti-free balloons and old school steamers. That would be tacky, right? If anyone is or is following a frequent party-goer, they’ll have noticed the trend of the extravagant dessert table.

The new photo backdrop is an overabundance of sugary goods, with the perfect amount of glitter, flowers, and mismatched ornaments. This multi-tiered concentrated mass of food and flavor is the centerpiece of the party. And to anyone who can’t afford it, it feels like they’re being stingy hosts by only offering cake. So out comes the cake pops, and the dipped pretzels, and the iced cookies, and the french macaroons, and the theme specific M&M’s- knowing full well that there will be plenty of leftovers which will eventually be a stale waste in the kitchen cupboard.   

And no matter the vision, a lot of times, venues are not accommodating of the decor. Some places have a “no balloons” policy, others don’t want anything stuck to a wall. If you’re hosting at a house, you can’t easily rearrange the furniture. With such pressure to have the most picturesque party, you really have to think hard if you really want to and can afford to throw one.

It’s easy to forget that Snapchat and Instagram stories only focus on the micro moments. As with anything on social media, only the very best gets displayed; the mundane and ugly are tucked away and hidden out of frame. Parties should be about enjoying good company in the time spent together.

We need to focus on the ambiance of togetherness instead of the visuals. There will always be someone who has one-upped everyone by adding chair covers, hanging upside down umbrellas and stringing cords upon cords of fairy lights. It should be more than how deep your wallet goes or how unique your theme is. All anyone needs is to feel welcome and pleasantly fed. You can’t hide discomfort and annoyance behind expensive arrangements and geofilters.

So what do you think about picture perfect party? Let us know in the comments section below.


One Reply to “The Picture-Perfect Party Problem”

  1. True, the extra effort on the visuals these days is because of the social media and selfie culture. As long as the company is nice and the food is good, I am in. I don’t care about the pictures or the decor.

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