The 6 Party Supplies You Should Always Have On Hand

by Melissa

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Throwing a party doesn’t need to be stressful when you have some basic party supplies on hand. Here’s 6 party essentials to keep in your stash so you can make any occasion more festive!  



Today’s my birthday! The big 3-0. Crazy! In honor of the big party day, I thought I’d share some of my favorite party supplies with you, how I use them and where I get them. The key to throwing last minute, festive parties (big or small) is to have the essential party supplies on hand. By having a few basics in your party stash, you can make any celebration extra festive… simply.

Here are my top 6 party supplies I keep in my party supply stash.

FYI… I hate spending a lot of money on party supplies, so I promise you that you can build up a party stash cheaply if you watch for sales and clearances.

I tend to buy basic party supplies (think solid colors, fun textures and patterns) that can be used for multiple parties rather than very specific party supplies like Winnie the Pooh party plates. Because chances are, I probably won’t ever throw a Winnie the Pooh party.

Ok, let’s go! 


Balloons scream party! While there are many fun letter balloons out there, you can also create a fun ambiance with just regular colored balloons. 

Pro-tip: Don’t be limited to helium balloons. I rarely use helium-filled balloons for parties, because it’s just one more thing to go pick up from the store. 

Since I have this electric balloon pump I can use at home, filling balloons isn’t stressful. 

Merry Christmas balloons were great for the focal point at our White Christmas ward party. 


And I couldn’t resist these balloons for my daughter’s 2nd birthday- an Ok-2-berfest! 


And scattered on the floor is fun, too! Like for our Fiesta Nacho Bar


And probably one of my favorites…creating a balloon garland for our little guy’s Sunshine 1st birthday party. 


If you feel ambitious, you can also make a giant balloon arch! We make one for our 4th of July bike parade and everyone loves it! Here’s the balloon arch tutorial. 



Candles. I always forget to add candles to my shopping list around birthdays, so stock up! You never know when you need to throw a quick birthday bash. Keep a stash of some fun birthday candles so you are always ready sing happy birthday. 

I usually buy generic candles that will be perfect for boys or girls, but sometimes themed candles really make a difference to a party. For example, these fun animal print candles were the perfect compliment to our animal birthday party. 

party candles

Dollar Tree usually has these Happy Birthday candles in stock. So fun, right? Adding these candles make this birthday dessert extra festive! 


Extra long candles are really fun for first birthdays, cupcakes, or just to make your cake really have the wow factor. These are from Target. They come in a few different colors which are great for boys or girls. 



A small collection of glass jars are a must for your party stash! Trust me, I’m a semi-minimalist at heart, but glass jars always come in handy. Keeping just a few small, medium, and large will be so helpful. 

Glass jars are great for: 

  • filling will seasonal candy for extra pops of color
  • toppings for Caramel Apple Bars or Ice Cream sundae bars

An ordinary mason jar became a great centerpiece for our Cinco De Mayo party. Or a mini jar for a guessing jar. 


This milk-style bottle filled with M&Ms and flags was a simple centerpiece for a 4th of July party. 


I threw this Halloween Ice Cream Sundae Bar together in under 15 minutes because I had a stash of jars on hand. Adding the toppings into jars made the party spread look intentional and cute. 

Halloween Dessert Idea- Ice Cream with Spooky Toppings

I scored this apothecary jar for $2 using a coupon at Jo-anns. It was such a fun addition to our Galentine’s Party. 


Favorite places to find glass jars: 

  • Ikea
  • Target Dollar Spot
  • Thrift stores
  • Craft stores using coupons 


Always keep some mini paper bags in your party stash. They are so versatile and can be used for lots of different things.

You can add a simple embellishment to match the theme of your party of leave them plain if they are patterned. Also, they make awesome cookie bags!

I’m so glad I had these bags on hand for our Halloween mystery dinner. 

Halloween Dinner- Bat Wings

These mini striped paper bags were perfect for our Turkey Thanksgiving favors


Striped colored bags can be used year-round. Adding an embellishment to this bag made it look festive for our Christmas in July party. 


Use mini craft bags for envelopes for invitations like I did for our Valentine’s Day Party Invites. 


And let’s not forget that they are great for small gift wrap like when I used them to put together this “Around the World” Date Night Idea + Printables 



I know there’s a huge environmental debate about straws right now, but I think occasionally using them is just fine!

You can set a fun straw at each place setting or use them as part of the tablescape to add extra color or texture.

Red striped straws were used as a topper for our Swiss Day dinner. 


 Use paper straws to create a pie or cake topper. This was for my dad’s retirement party. 


And straws are totally acceptable to drink with, too. These yellow straws added a fun pop of color for my daughter’s “Little Miss” themed party. 




You know how I said that I like to buy basic party supplies that can be used multiple times? Well, napkins are the exception. I love holiday themed napkins or party specific. Napkins are pretty cheap so you can’t go wrong by buying a package that goes specifically with your party. Also, I tend to use holiday napkins multiple years if I have extras.

Valentine’s Day napkins added a great pop of color to our traditional Valentine’s Day Family Dinner


And these cute ones for our Easter brunch? I used neutral party ware I had,  but these cute bunny napkins added the finishing touch! 


And these cute rainbow napkins were a hit for our St. Patrick’s Day dinner! 


See how just having a few essential party supplies on hand can make a celebration that much more special? And the great news is that having these 6 supplies will only take up a small shelf. Totally doable. 

Now…let’s go party! 


1 comment

Ashley July 12, 2015 - 2:31 am

I love your jar idea, I think I’ll start looking for some larger jars to use at my parties. I find some cute party stuff at Zurchers (though, I don’t think they do clearance very often) and I’ve found cute napkins at Tuesday Morning that were pretty inexpensive.


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