Your Last Minute Christmas Party Planning Checklist

We are officially in Christmas party season! Which is great if you’ve already organised your office Christmas party – but not quite as joyful a prospect if nothing’s been planned, and suddenly you’ve been lumped with the task of making it happen.

Sound familiar? For you, the team at Venuemob have whipped up a last minute Christmas party planning checklist to get you through December unscathed.

1. Figure out what your non-negotiables are

This first step is arguably the most important one. Know exactly what you need from your Christmas party and your venue, because it will impact the entire process of planning your event. Decide from the get-go whether those items on your list fall under ‘must have’ or ‘that’d be great’.

Your very-much-confirmed budget could be the non-negotiable. It could be the date of the event. It could be accessibility requirements, or menu items (vegetarian, Kosher or Halal, for instance).

Identifying your non-negotiables and must-haves early will make the rest of the process of planning your last minute office Christmas party SO much easier.

The team at Venuemob recommend that you work out your ‘non negotiables’ for your event. For example – an outdoor space for guests to relax and mingle might be a ‘non negotiable’ when selecting your perfect venue – like this gorgeous private courtyard at the Immigration Museum in Melbourne’s CBD.

2. Find some venue options

You’re running out of time, and key dates are getting booked out. You could rack your brains for appropriate venues, contacting them one by one. Or you could book the venue everyone’s sick of – again. Or, you could access best options in one spot. Complete with imagery, availability information (vital), function package and menu information, and a rundown of minimum spend requirements for all spaces.

Venuemob – both as a website and an in-house team to assist larger corporate groups – is adept in finding the perfect venue for teams and groups organising last minute Christmas parties. Our tip? Get connected with available venues that suit your budget, with just a click.

Venuemob makes finding your ideal Christmas party venue stress free.
Venue – Melbourne Gallery at Melbourne Museum, Carlton.

3. Is the venue convenient?

This might seem like a no-brainer, but venue location is worthy of its own item in the last minute Christmas party planning checklist. Is the venue conveniently located for your colleagues or guests? Where is it in relation to your office, and public transport options? How far will they have to stumble post-party? The distance guests have to travel to reach the party often influences how many people actually attend, and how much of a good time they have.

4. Ask the right questions

First up? That’s easy. Ask the venue about your non-negotiables.

Next, we recommend the following questions – depending on your requirements, of course.

  • What are our catering options? Is there a bar tab option?
  • How much time will you have for set-up and packdown?
  • Realistically, will guests be comfortable in the space, or will they be squished?
  • What’s included in the cost of the venue hire or min spend?
  • Until what time will we have access to the venue / space?
  • If you need AV – will you need to pay more?
  • If you need an exclusive space – will the public be able to see inside / have access to your space?

5. Organise food and drinks

Important checklist item ahead! How many times have you been to an event and thought afterwards ‘gosh, it was fun – but I wish there had been more food’? Avoid those pitfalls by ensuring you budget and plan appropriately, even when you’re in the throes of last minute Christmas party planning.

Will your guests need lunch? Lunch AND dinner? If you’re planning on serving canapés at your event, how many pieces will your guests need to make sure their tummies are lined? Consider when your event starts, and how long you expect festivities to run.

Same goes for drinks! Beverage packages provide more bang for your buck, and can be limited to a particular number of hours for service – this is a great option for when you have a very specific start and end time, and when you have a large number of guests.

More casual? Chuck some money on a bar tab, and let your colleagues buy their own drinks when it runs out. Easy.

6. Make sure guests are going to have fun!

Be honest. Are your colleagues going to need a helping hand to get mingling and chatting amongst different departments? If the answer’s yes, we recommend including an activity in the day’s festivities: go karting, an escape room, or other hands-on, fun experiences. You could even choose a venue that comprises both an activity, AND the food and booze everyone’s looking forward to.

For other teams, the only the thing they’ll need to have a great time is a great soundtrack. If you’re planning on bringing your own music or playlist, double check whether your venue is able to provide an aux cord and speakers, and that you can in fact play your own tunes.

Similarly – if you’re organising a band or DJ, chat to your chosen venue about your plan well in advance so you’re not caught facepalming in frustration on the night.

Want your event to be talked about for years to come? Some venues can provide activities to incorporate into your event such as Melbourne Museum that offers a range of bespoke experiences that will engage and delight your party guests.
Image: Stewie Donn Photography, Melbourne Museum

7. Tee up an after-party venue

This will depend entirely on the vibe and average age of your guestlist, but you may want to consider organising an after-party venue. If that’s the case, here’s the Venuemob hot tip: avoid playing it by ear on the night.

Nothing takes the wind out of a group’s party sails quite like standing on a street corner trying to decide which direction to take, or waiting in line at a club!

Whether it’s a reserved VIP booth or an entire semi-exclusive section of a bar, make sure it’s a done deal before the date of your office Christmas party. It might even be worth sending out an email to your team during the party planning process to gauge how many guests are keen, and which venues they’d prefer for kick-ons.

So. What are you waiting for? Go forth and lock in your last minute Christmas party, and deliver an event that runs like a planned-months-in-advance Christmas party.

With Venuemob on your side, you’ll be sinking a bev (or five) and enjoying a tasty morsel (or ten) in the perfect venue in no time.

Check out Christmas party venues on Venuemob >>

 

For all your festive season event hire needs – contact the friendly team at Complete Function Hire today.

3 Interns, 3 Stylists, 3 Events, 3 Hours – Event Styling Competition

3 Interns, 3 Stylists, 3 Events, 3 Hours – was an exciting competition held in July at the new No.1 event space in Malvern. The competition was the brain child of the always innovative Elizabeth Hollingsworth, Director of My Event Décor.

Complete Function Hire were thrilled to be part of this 20 strong industry supplier collaboration as the concept was just so cool! The competition was created to help event management students understand what clients want (and on a limited time frame which is very much an event industry standard these days).

One of the talented event management students, Clare Brown setting her Jumanji themed table (long rustic table provided by us).
Credits: Event management college: William Angliss Institute, Stylist: Artmospherix,
Organiser: My Event Decor, Photographer: Jackie Dickson,Venue: No 1, Bark candle holders, monstera placemats, antler bones, faux mother of pearl cutlery: My Event Decor
Trees: Green Event, Zebra print napkins: Wholesale Wedding, Leopard print velvet table runner: Di Simmons Linen Hire, Props: The Prop Store

 

 

 

3 creative students – Clare Brown from William Angliss, Sam de Silva from Victoria University and Ishita Mandal from Holmesglen Moorabbin, had to complete one table setting per event in an hour or less. The heat was on but it did provide real industry exposure for these talented students. Experienced event stylists from Ruffles and Bells, The Hattie and Bairn Tribe and Artmospherix created mood boards and creative briefs that were then utilised by the students who needed to select items from the rental range at My Event Décor (and had to liaise with a suite of suppliers – from florists to stationary designers – to complete their looks).

A stunning corporate launch look for Exponet developed by Clare Brown featuring our gold cutlery.
Credits: Event management college: William Angliss Institute, Stylist: Artmospherix, Organiser: My Event Decor, Photographer: Jackie Dickson, Venue: No 1, Jazz chair: Exponet, Test tube chandelier: My Event Decor, Casper white weave tablecloth, bright orange damask napkins: Di Simmons Linen Hire

 

 

The students sourced items for themed events including corporate product launches, a Mad Men themed 40th party, a one-year old’s pink birthday party, a Jumanji themed 30th and several wedding looks including Moroccan bohemian, glamorous and contemporary. This exciting competition was captured on video and camera – thus giving the students an excellent portfolio to utilise for their careers ahead.

Talented student Ishita Mandal created an impressive look for Melbourne Watch.
Credits: Event management college: Holmesglen, Stylist: Ruffles and Bells, Organiser: My Event Decor, Photographer: Jackie Dickson, Venue: No 1,  Watch, acrylic display poster: Melbourne Watch, Gold charger plates: Weddings of Distinction, Illuminated acrylic display cube, gold striped candle holders: My Event Decor, Gold Tiffany chairs, gold cutlery, white plinth: Complete Function Hire, Red napkins: Wholesale Wedding, White dinner plates, black vases and flowers: Kmart

Major suppliers included My Event Décor, Complete Function Hire, Weddings of Distinction, Cacao, The Prop Store, Di Simmons Linen Hire, Mini Party People, RTR Productions, Greenevent, Thrive Flowers, Exponet, Melbourne Watch and Helen’s Hill Estate.

An epic Mad Men themed table for a 40th birthday party styled by Sam de Silva.
Credits: Event management college: Victoria University, Organiser: My Event Decor, Photographer: Jackie Dickson, Venue:  No 1, Black bentwood chairs, black easel, communal table, gold cutlery:  Complete Function Hire, Gold charger plates: Weddings of Distinction, Gold striped vase, gold striped candle holders, antler bones:  My Event Decor, 
Place cards:  Sweetheart Creative, 40th birthday sign: Letters from A to Z, Cupcakes: House of Varin

Congratulations to all the students involved and to the team of event gurus at My Event Décor on creating such a fresh concept that encourages creativity and supports career growth in our industry.

 

Contact the friendly team at Complete Function Hire today to discuss your upcoming event.