Becky Siame is CEO of New Zealand’s nationwide boutique party hire business Joy Co.
Becky knows a thing or two about how to host a slumber party and she has shared with us her tips and ideas for how to host the best slumber party ever.
Becky’s Slumber Party Ideas
SLUMBER PARTY IDEA #1: Best Sleepover Age. Postpone hosting a slumber party until your child is 6 years old. Aged 8-14 is the most popular age for a sleepover. If some guests aren’t ready to sleepover have them stay and and join in right up to lights out time. Organise the pick up time with their parents.
SLUMBER PARTY IDEA #2: Limit The Guest List. Keep it small. The more guests the more space you’ll need in your living room. Too many can also be difficult to navigate in the case of an emergency. A good idea is to make the number of guests half the age of the child. So a 6 year old would have about 3 guests. A 10 year old about 5 guests. In saying that even numbers are best so no one is the ‘odd one out.’
SLUMBER PARTY IDEA #3: Establish Boundaries. The easiest way to ruin any party is for kids to go crazy when away from their parents. It’s up to you to “lay down the law” early to ensure fun for them and peace for you. Let these small guests know which rooms or toys are off-limits and your expectations. Also let them know there is a curfew—lights out at let’s say 9 p.m., which gives them time to wind down and chat among themselves.
SLUMBER PARTY IDEA #4: Food for Thought: Who hasn’t been to a slumber party where someone ate too much or got on a sugar high around bedtime? Provide easy-to-handle foods like pizza. If you’re going to serve fizzy drinks, opt for small amounts or avoid altogether. Make sure nothing sugary is available to eat or drink one hour before bedtime.
SLUMBER PARTY IDEA #5: Skip the Micromanaging. It’s more and more common these days for kids to be involved in multiple sports/hobbies and they’re constantly on the go. Give them a break and let them hang out, play, and use their imaginations to create their own best slumber party ever rather than have them follow a jam-packed schedule to keep them from becoming bored.
SLUMBER PARTY IDEA #6: Prepare for the Forgotten. It’s good to prepare for the forgotten incase kids turn up without toothbrushes, pillows & sleeping bags. Have some handy just incase. Creating party favors such as ‘Sleepover Kits’ is a fun and great way to pre-empt the forgotten toothbrush. Having a basket of soft toys available for children to choose from for the night is fun too. Even older kids will enjoy this.
SLUMBER PARTY IDEA #7: Sleepover Party Fun:
Go Radioactive. Take one slumber party, add glow-in-the-dark face paint, glow sticks, reflective tape, and a black light. Turn off the lights and bam! You’ve got glow-in-the-dark fun. Music, kids, disco and karaoke all go with sleepover fun.
Mani-Pedi Party. Girls just want to have fun and what better way than with a Mani-Pedi Party? All it takes is several bottles of inexpensive nail polish (glitter and metallics are hot!) and some nail bling. Let them have fun painting their own or one another’s nails. Hand out prizes for the zaniest nail design, neatest nails, and more. Make sure to set up an area where they can paint without damaging furniture, upholstery, or carpet.
Fashion Show. Take a stack of newspapers, a few rolls of toilet paper, masking tape, scissors, glitter pens, and some creativity, and what do you get? A fabulously fun fashion show. Pair up partygoers and give them thirty minutes to create the next fashion trend for one another. Have them model their creations on the red carpet (a red sheet from the thrift store that’s split in two works well) with music playing in the background. Choose an older sibling or you to be the emcee who describes these no-doubt wacky styles from the “House of [name of girl]” or “[name of girl] Couture.” Hand out prizes for Craziest Dress, Dress Most Likely To Be Worn in Real Life, and whatever else you can come up with. Or setup a selfie station with a backdrop and let them dressup in grandmas old hat and your teenage prom dress. Throw in some boas and funky glasses and this will keep them occupied for hours.
Film Flashback. Movies and slumber parties go hand in hand, so why not organise a vintage movie night? Have party attendees cast their vote beforehand on which movie to watch by giving them a list to choose from. They cast their vote by texting you or having their parent text you their choice. Ask the kids to come to the party dressed like a character from the film. Hand out prizes for the Most Authentic costume, Most Thrifty costume, etc.
Food Fun: Have the guests prepare their own food. Make pizzas, ice cream sundaes or have a burger bar.
Pillowcase craft: Have the kids decorate a pillowcase. Gather up fabric pens, glitter, a glue gun and ribbons. Pop a piece of cardboard inside the pillowcase to protect the other side. They just won’t be able to sleep on their pillowcase creations that night!
Pre-Sleepover Activity: It’s a great idea to combine your sleepover with a late afternoon activity away from home like swimming, ten pin bowling or laser strike. The kids will come home tired and ready to relax for the evening together.
SLUMBER PARTY IDEA #8: Teepee Time. Teepees are all the rage and it’s easy to see why. Reserving a teepee party package from a reputable company is easy and they do the set-up for you. Once the kids see how your living room has been transformed into an amazing getaway, all that’s left for you to do is put up your feet with a glass of your favorite beverage! Now that’s the best slumber party ever. All the pictured tee pee parties are from Joy Co. which are available nationwide.
SLUMBER PARTY IDEA #9 Safety. Ensure you have written down all the parent’s contact numbers. Discuss with the parent’s their children’s sleepover experience, food allergies and night time habits. Together plan what you will do if their child gets homesick. Have a plan of action ready. Check your smoke alarms are working. Check on the children regularly under the guise of delivering more snacks. Have a nightlight down the hallway and show your little guests where you will be sleeping so they can find you in the night if need be.
SLUMBER PARTY IDEA #10: Set a clear pick-up time with parents for the next morning. You will be ready for it. (Hint: while 10 a.m. seems early, there’s always someone who runs late. The children will most likely be up at the crack of dawn too.)
Thanks so much Becky for sharing your tips and ideas for hosting a successful slumber party. Reading this makes me feel excited and more confident about hosting my own slumber party. Your tee pee packages look amazing and stress free too.