Party planning should be fun and easy, so get things done in 15 minutes or less.

The 15-Minute Party Planner's blog breaks down basic party-planning tasks into simple actions that take 15 minutes or less. We're not here to make you the next Martha, we're here to help you be crafty quickly!

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

A-tisket a-tasket: a well-planned bathroom basket

Whether you're hosting a party at home or in a banquet hall, try to anticipate the needs of your guests. Visitors may find themselves in need of supplies like band-aids, breath mints, and tissues, but might not have them on hand. You'll prove to be something of a clairvoyant hostess if you arrange to have the necessary items waiting in bathroom baskets.

Bathroom baskets provide your guests with thoughtful necessities. You'll find many of the necessary supplies at home and can pick up the rest at a dollar store. Simply find baskets large enough to hold your supplies (but not large enough to be in the way), and fill with them with incidentals your guests would appreciate. If you're hosting a party at home, one basket should do it; if you're out at a banquet hall, however, consider putting a basket in each bathroom and customizing baskets for the men's and women's rooms.

Recommended supplies for bathroom baskets include:
  • Antacid (such as Rolaids or Tums)
  • Band-aids
  • Breath mints
  • Combs (you can get a dozen plastic combs for $1 at the Dollar Tree)
  • Cough drops
  • Dental floss
  • Earring backs (especially helpful at formal parties)
  • Eyeglasses repair kit
  • Hairspray (and extra bobby pins or hair elastics)
  • Lint brushes
  • Lotion
  • Nail files (and clear nail polish for stocking runs)
  • Pain relievers (try to have a variety of options, so that people who can't take one kind of pain reliever can have other choices)
  • Q-tips
  • Sewing kit (or at the very least, safety pins)
  • Spray deodorant
  • Stain remover (such as Shout Wipes or Tide to Go Sticks)
  • Static cling spray (or dryer sheets!)
  • Tampons or pads
  • Tissues
  • Toothpicks
Feel free to customize your bathroom baskets based on the needs of your guests and type of event by leaving some items out and adding in others. Depending on the venue, you may want to add bug spray, for instance, or hand sanitizer. You could even throw in a few AA batteries for those whose cameras have died.

Can you get everything together in about 15 minutes? Chances are yes. Raid your closets for travel-size lotions, tissues, and hairspray. Check out the pantry for gum, breath mints, or toothpicks, and find dryer sheets and static cling spray in your laundry room. You can track down the other necessary items by hitting the travel and toiletry aisles at a local dollar store; by limiting yourself to two aisles, you're likely to get in and out of the store in mere minutes.

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