7 Unconventional Party Ideas!

DEBUTS have become such an important part of a girls coming of age because not only does it celebrate the moment we become adults, it also is a chance for us to show people our individuality, and the image we want to project. The parties you give, be it big or intimate, shows a lot about who you are, and how you think the world looks at you.

Everyone wants to have a party that rocks or at least remembered. So do you want your debut to be really memorable? Make it unconventional! Debuts don’t have to be always as formal as your Juniors-Seniors Prom. Besides, you’re also celebrating your 18th birthday party, so why don’t you make it into something you will truly enjoy? Here are just some of the coolest ideas to consider in place of your usual formal cotillions, candles and roses.

Foam/Bubble Parties

If you and your friends love to dance, foam creates that wild and exciting atmosphere for a great bash. Tip: Too expensive? No worries. Create your own bubbles. If your parents and guests aren’t too conservative, you can still keep that program of yours. You can still dance with the 18 men in your life through the foam and in place of the candles for your 18 girlfriends you can do something like 18 Bubble Blows so they can wish you good luck.

Costume Party

A talked-about party is not always about the host. If you want yours to be memorable, make it interactive by making your guests part of the show too! Get your friends to talk about your party weeks before the event itself. Ask your friends to come in costumes and be surprised at how fun it is to see everyone dress up as characters and celebrities. Tip: Make it worth your guests’ while, let your friends know that awards (gift certificates from spas and salons, or tickets to a concert if you feel generous)will be given to those who sport the best costume. This way your friends are challenged to look for the most unique costume, therefore making your party more interesting!

80’s Party

Blast from the past and ask everyone to be in 80’s attire. 80’s clothing trends are now in style so though your theme is not new, you’d be on top of a trend. Tip: Hire a great band that specializes in 80’s music. Get ready to boogie on down!

Grammy Awards Night

Get everyone to wear formal and make your friends feel like celebrities by having people stand as paparazzis as people enter. Design your location into a formal theatre. Give out fun awards (best “friend”, best male dancer, etc) Tip: Want to create the best cinematic atmosphere? Greenbelt rents out one of its cinemas just for parties and events like these.

Casino Party

What a great way to celebrate your adulthood than to play something only adults supposedly are allowed to play. Set up poker tables and prepare fake casino chips allotted for each guest for them to play with. Tips: you can give out finger foods and “cocktail” drinks (juices and softdrinks in wine glasses:) to add to the atmosphere. Put up redemption centers for those who want to “cash-in” their chips.

Pool party / Beach party / Luau

Have fun with the summer sun and enjoy a relaxing party at the pool or beach. Hold beach games and serve barbequed food and refreshing fruit shakes. You can even opt to ask people to come in Hawaian outfits. Tips: Set up your stereo with some relaxing tunes everyone can either relax, dance or sing to. Music creates the atmosphere here so make sure your guests are enjoying it.

Kiddie Party

Are you the fun and playful type? Hold a birthday party at Mcdonalds or Jollibee and bring out the child in everyone. Hold childish parlor games like palayok, pabitin and trip to Jerusalem games. Bring out great childhood memories with mascots like Ronald Mcdonald or even Jollibee himself. Tips: To add to the atmoshphere, hire magicians, clowns and balloon twisters. Rent out “dirty” ice cream trolleys, cotton candy machines and give it out to guests for FREE! People will surely love your party. If your friends are fun and cooperative enough, you can even ask them to come in kiddie clothes. In place of your program you can do something like 18 Ice Cream Toasts or 18 Balloons where balloons are popped after your friends address their little speeches for you. (Tammy Lim of Spunk)

Do you have a brilliant idea? Drop us a note at party@debutideas.com

Photo Credit: © Plush Studios/Blend Images/Corbis


  1. I’m celebrating my debut on nov. 2009. I don’t know how to plan the flow of the program, can you give me some examples? Thank you very much. My theme for my debut is the classic one with the cotillion. I don’t have any idea what to add besides 18 roses, 18 candles and 18 treasures. Thank you for your suggestions. God bless!

    • Hi Joanna,

      On behalf of debut ideas, we welcome you to our site. You are part of what this website stands for and our hearts are out to debutantes who would really like to make their debut party an event to remember.

      By the way, we’ve already posted a basic program for a debut party. You can actually do a variation depending on what you want to retain or add to your own program. I hope this helps you on your debut planning. Happy planning and let me know what you come up with.

      debut ideas

  2. hi! i’ll be celebrating my 18th birthday this coming May. i’ll only have 2 programs, since i don’t want it to be traditional. there will be 18 flowers(i’ll be using different flowers instead of roses) and a mixed 18serenades/gifts. i would like to ask suggestions for the title of the programs. what word/term can i use for the “flowers” and for the serenades/gifts? btw, the title of my party is “Whimsical Summer.”

    i would really appreciate to hear suggestions from you. God Bless!

    • Hi Aly,

      You seem to be all prepped up for you most awaited party. Whimsical Summer is indeed a very ingenious idea. For your 18 roses, you can substitute “18 Blooms of May” or “18 Flowers of May” which is much simpler. The word “serenade” is actually a nice title for the serenade/gift had it not been mixed with gifts. Hence, for your mixed serenades/gifts, I would suggest you use “18 wines.” They would give a brief speech, make a toast and then render you a song or present their gifts afterward. Hope all is well with the planning and enjoy your party.

  3. hi..is it possible to have a traditional debut party for about P50,000? could someone suggest a cheap venue?? please and thank you! im hoping to convince my parents in giving me one.

    • hi debbie,

      This will all depend on the number of guests you would have. The number of guests would determine the type of venue you would be looking for, and of course, the headcount would determine the amount of food to prepare. There are certain clubhouses in the metro that can be rented for as low as 5 to 10k. Ask the clubhouse in your subdivision or a subdivision near your house on their rental fee. Setting up the venue to a theme that you want would require a lot of imagination and ingenuity on your part if you want it to look magnificent and yet within your budget. Three-star hotels offer budget party packages for debutantes starting at 25,000 inclusive of everything so you don’t have to worry about anything at all. You can buy a nice gown in a department store for 2,500, 5,000 up to 10,000 pesos depending on the design. If you want your gown to be a perfect fit for you, you can go to Divisoria and have your gown custom made for the same price range or even cheaper (haggle like there’s no tomorrow.) So, I believe it is possible to have a debut party with a budget of 50k. Happy planning and let me know how it goes.

  4. thanks a lot lizette! well, i was thinking of having about 100-150 guests. could you suggest some cheap decent venues for debuts?? im really having a hard time finding one. thanks a lot! =)

  5. hopefully..somewhere in makati or in the metro manila region except the ones up north like quezon city..ehehe. i’m from las piñas

    • hi debbie,

      We have come up with some venues for you to choose from in the suppliers page. This is still under construction so please bear with us as we want to give the best possible suggestions for our dear debutantes. Thanks and happy planning.

  6. Hi! if I were to have a foam party, where would I be able to rent a foam machine? and roughly how much would it cost?

    • Hi Gia,

      Foam parties are exciting indeed. I don’t have a clue on how much a foam machine rental costs, but bubble machine rentals are usually P1,300, so the foam machine may be in that range as well or a little bit higher. Although you may opt to make foam and bubbles yourself (we will be posting an article on DIY foam and bubbles soon), you may want to check these people out first. I saw them on the internet. I’ve tried contacting them but they haven’t replied to my queries yet. They rent out every possible thing pertaining to parties, including foam machines. As I do not know them personally, please always exhibit caution when dealing with them or with any supplier for that matter. They are DNX Systems, (0927) 6263344 and (0915) 9133346. You can also check out a carwash near your venue since this is just the same thing that they use to make foam for foam parties. Ask them if you can rent out their foam machine for only a few hours. I’m sure they will be able to accommodate your request. Happy planning and thanks for visiting our site.

  7. Hey 🙂 I’m having my debut next year and I was happy to see the Awards Night theme. I’ve been wanting to have that kind of theme since forever! :)) It’s good, now, that I have a guide. Do you think the greenbelt cinema rental would be too expensive?

    • hi tricia,

      Frankly I don’t know how much is the rent for a cinema, but it surely is going to be an awesome party once you pull it off. I believe it will not be that expensive most especially if you rent out the small ones, but I really have no clue. I’m sorry if I cannot be of help but I am going to try to find out for sure because that would also be a good alternative for a venue. Thanks and happy planning.

  8. hi! 🙂 im planning my debut but im having a hard time finding a venue. can i find a nice venue with a budget of around 40k? with 120-150 guests and in manila or makati area 🙂 can you suggest venues with that kind of budget?

    • Hi jenny,

      It all depends on what type of venue you want. Garden venues are more pricey so you may opt to look around for 3star hotels in the manila and makati areas. http://debutideas.com/?page_id=97#manila and http://debutideas.com/?page_id=97#makati. Click on the website of the venues on these pages and some would have their rates on their site. Some you may have to call or email for rates. I have yet to call all of them for rates for our file sometime soon. There are a number of them that offer affordable debut packages. For instance, City Garden Suites and Citystate Tower Hotel have affordable rates for debut packages. I believe restaurants have cheaper rates. The thing that you would want to consider among restaurants is how many guests they can accommodate in their venue. You can also rent out a hall or a function room and then choose your own caterer. That way, you can budget the price per plate to fit in your budget. (You may have to ask the venue for this though because some venues have accredited caterers.) Another consideration is renting out clubhouses. They have cheap rates and would allow outside caterers to cater. This is all for now. Happy scouting.

  9. Hi there 🙂
    I’m having my debut in 2 months and I’m not so sure of what theme I would have. But I thought of having it a pool party like everybody’s going to be in their swimsuits especially my friends and after that, an overnight after the party. Can you suggest any other ideas? Because I’m not so sure of mine. I wanted the foam party too since most of my friends love to dance. But I’m thinking the venue, and where to rent the machine. I’m from Zamboanga City, Philippines. Thank you so much! 😀

    • Hi Jelly (Zamboanga City),

      A pool party is actually a cool debut party to have. You can use a beach-themed party or a luau party to make this more spectacular. This is an informal way of celebrating your debut. However, it does not mean you can’t have a program just because it is a pool party. You may forego the usual program and just create a mini-program. You may eliminate some of the elements of a full debut program. A cotillion dance would be difficult with a pool party so substitute this with probably a hawaiian dance. It would be really a treat if you can have synchronized dancers grace your debut party, but this is a long shot. For decorations, during the program proper while no one is swimming yet, fill the swimming pool with floating candles.

      We actually have a foam party article but I haven’t posted it yet due to some concerns that I’ve encountered while I was writing it. Foam parties are really fun to have especially with your friends. The problem is where to hold the party. I’m guessing some venues may not be too keen on having their place filled with soap and water. A suggestion would be an empty swimming pool where you can fill with foam and bubbles knee high. Suppliers for foam machines are hard to come by and I have suggested one debutante who also wants to have a foam party to ask a carwash company near the venue if they could rent out their foam machine for a few hours. Be careful though when having foam parties as accidents may happen since a venue filled with soap suds would surely be slippery. This is all for now and happy planning.

  10. Im so glad i found this website.,
    such a big help for the venues and themes. But Im planning to have my debut next year of June (rainy season in the Philippines).,
    But Im currently residing here in Las Vegas. So the family & I have to travel back home. But I have alot of friends in Manila right now. As of now, Im thinking of having a “Mardis Gras/Masquerade Tehene”., and My favorite color is Purple.
    Any ideas of what else I can add up to this, or how I can set it up, etc.
    My parents are willing to spend from 100k-150k pesos.
    You think I can make this possible?
    Please reply back.
    My email add is joannagalvez@yahoo.com
    Thanks :]

    • Hi Joanna G.,

      It’s nice that you chose to celebrate your debut here in the Philippines. Of course everything is possible most especially if you have a nice budget to go around with. Since June is indeed a rainy season, you might want to consider venues that are indoors. Mardi Gras/Masquerade theme is a great theme to have and the color purple is not a bad choice as well. This is similar to the Renaissance theme article that we have here in the site. You may want to consider some elements there. A Mardi Gras will not be complete without a jovial parade of costumes. As your grand entrance, make your friends parade in front of you (costumes and the works), after which you will follow suit with a banging grand entrance complete with spotlight. You may have a sort of a dance number (short) or 2 to 4 male friends may carry you to the stage for effect. As I come up with more ideas, I will definitely let you know. In the meantime, make use of our debut party budget planner and scout for suppliers as some suppliers get booked fairly early.

  11. Thanks for the help! We had a decision to make my debut as a White Beach Party; that means all guests must wear white to coordinate with the theme. I’m quite worried about the giveaways. Can you help me think of an idea on what to prepare for the giveaways? For the invitation, we’re already working on it, I’m just worried about the giveaways. Thanks in advance! God bless ^^

    • Hi Jelly,

      White Beach Party is a good choice. We have an article about the Tropical Beach Party that may be helpful to you. http://debutideas.com/?p=518. Fusing it with a white party is simple. You just need to put white drapes around the venue or white beach flags. You can also go for a zen-inspired white party where you hang japanese white lanterns around the venue. About the keepsakes, photobooths are so in nowadays. You can print a white backdrop with your name on it, or a picture of a beach would also be nice, and your guests will be photographed in those. You can also give away white flip-flops (just like what they did at a certain filipino celebrity wedding), a miniature japanese white lantern or decorative bottles with white sand. If I think of anything else I’ll let you know. Happy planning.

  12. hello im having my debut next month and i haven’t think of any give away that i should give and i want more unique ideas to put on my program 🙂 my theme is butterfly

    • Hi Alyssa,

      We have some great party favor ideas on our article about the butterfly theme http://debutideas.com/?p=6 that you may want to consider. How about figurines of butterflies and flowers. That would be cute too. I’m also loving a butterfly shaped cookie that you can make 3 days before your birthday. http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_Ldah__-frBM/SN0WIc-1VwI/AAAAAAAABVw/C8dwfvlpWGM/s400-R/Butterfly+Crackers.jpg.

      For unique ideas, you can have a spectacular grand entrance by adding a detachable butterfly wing on your gown and having a butterfly release the moment you step up to your stage. You can also ask your guests to release the butterfly as you make your walk towards the stage. Have a swing set up at the stage that will serve as your debutante’s chair so that when you swing to and fro, it would look as though you’re flying. Hope this helps and happy birthday Alyssa!

  13. hello! i’m having my debut this coming November and i’m thinking of having kiddie party as the theme. Kiddie party because i’m not into this girly things and i don’t want to wear gown. I’m planning to make the guests wear something formal that is green since it’s my fave color. could you please help me to think unique ideas for games, dress, souvenirs, invitations and party favors? Also, do you have other ideas in exchange of the traditional 18 roses and candles? you’re reply would be a very big help. thanks in advance! :))

    • Hi Avie!

      I have a friend who had her debut at McDonalds and everyone had fun! So I think it’s really a cool idea to have a kiddie party for your 18th birthday. Your debut souvenir can be loot bags that are usually given away at Kiddie parties. but the items inside can be a lot different since your guests are all adults. Perhaps you can put a therapeutic soap there, personalized keychain, figurine, some candies perhaps, or anything that you think your guests may fancy.

      For your invitations, you can use a school theme. Design your invites with an elementary pad paper as your background and write your details in kiddie handwriting.

      You can visit this page for some ideas for GAMES 🙂
      Debut Ideas! — GAMES

      For your dress, it really depends on your taste. You can be as casual as you like since it’s a kiddie themed debut party. You’re free to choose a beautiful dress of your taste here since you are not confined in a very strict theme.

      For your 18’s, you can have 18 loot bags (instead of 18 treasures) and 18 toys (instead of 18 candles. they will tell you what that toy symbolizes in your life).

      That’s all and we hope you’ll have fun on your 18th birthday celebration!

      Happy Planning!
      Lizette and Jam

  14. Hi~I’m also having a hard time choosing my theme.I love stars and koreans(celebrtiies,cultures.,etc.)
    but I don’t know what to do.I don’t have a program script.Can you please help me?I don’t know how to arrange the program.
    My Debut will be next month!I hope you can help me.Thanks~

    • Hi Pia,

      Korean culture is indeed very interesting, fun and unique. Decide first if you wish to do the traditional korean culture or do more of the modern korean pop street culture that is so uniquely korean or combine them both.

      If you are doing a Korean-inspired debut party, of course never pass up the opportunity to wear a Hanbok (a korean traditional garment). This consists of the the jacket or blouse shirt and the wrap-around skirt that is worn full. I’ve mentioned the parts because you can modernize these two by making the wrap around skirt into a fabulous gown that would go well when the jacket is worn with it.

      Some pictures of hanbok dresses can be found at our facebook page : http://www.facebook.com/home.php?#/photo.php?pid=3365045&id=73798053610

      I found a modern take of the Hanbok worn by Sandra Oh at an awards night. You can pair this up with a jacket that you can wear during the early part of the evening or during your grand entrance and then remove it later on to reveal a stunning modern gown.

      Source: http://www.dramabeans.com

      For invites, try having a poster-like invite. Look for posters of famous korean series, for instance Boys Over Flowers:

      Source: http://www.dramainkorea.com

      Source: http://kbsworld.kbs.co.kr

      Have a photo session with four of your guy friends and ask them to pose like these with you. Make this photo the front page of your invites and add a tag line like “Pia @ 18, irresistible.”

      Why not do a My Sassy Girl version:

      Source: http://1.bp.blogspot.com

      Pretty, fun and sassy, that is Pia @ 18!

      For souvenirs, koreans are fond of cute trinkets so you might want to look for cute keychains, mini-dolls, charm bracelets, cute cellphone trinkets, mini-lanterns, etc.


      These are samples of lanterns that you can hang around your venue for a more authentic Korean ambiance.

      Source: http://www.orientaltales.com

      Hope this helps and happy birthday Pia!

  15. hi debut ideas!!!

    i would like to ask you to please help me come up with a tag line besides the usual __________ @ 18. i’m gonna have a kinda laid back party in a bar this march w/ just the 18 dances and 18 glow sticks, a few games and an avp. i want this tag line to be really catchy!! btw, my invite is informal. We actually used tagalog words for a change. 🙂

    another thing, do you know where we can get a screen for our avp/projector 🙂 we actually have a projector already but the white cloth that goes with it is what we lack. pls tell me where we can possibly rent one.

    thanks!!! hoping for your immediate reply!! 🙂


    • Hi Ianne,

      I’m thinking that your party is more of a rave party isn’t it? I’m sure it is gonna be super fun. A tag line that you can use would be

      “Ianne is now 18… The lady wishes to party.
      So come and have a raving night. We will party on to our heart’s delight.”

      I’m not sure if they are renting out the screen only but you can ask them. Try calling Media Monsters 5159017, 2166109, 0917.5421717 http://www.mediamonsters.multiply.com. If not, focus the LCD onto a white wall but if there is none in your venue, buy a white cloth about 5×6 feet and iron it out so that the texture would be smooth. Hope this helps and happy birthday Ianne.

  16. hello. il be celebrating my party on may 2010. im having a hard time on choosing my theme. the venue is a private hotel,much like an old house. so, the place wud be morrocan-inspired theme. do i have to follow it?or choose any theme that could match with the venue?what theme would it be perhaps? 🙂

    • Hi Elay,

      Following the motif of your venue would be easier on your part because then you don’t have to decorate all that much and a Moroccan style is not a bad idea. It is very unique, colorful and flamboyant. We have an article that you might want to read to have an idea on how you can pull off a Moroccan inspired debut party which is similar to a sort of Bollywood inspired debut party. http://debutideas.com/?p=972. Capitalize on the theme’s color play. Choose bold colors to convey your theme. You can also incorporate a butterfly theme to your Moroccan inspired theme and have a butterfly release during your grand entrance. Butterfly and wild fairies theme would require you to have more flowy and translucent dresses, more of the georgette type of fabric but in bold and bright colors. Hope this helps and happy birthday Elay.

  17. wow! thank you very much for the reply. i like the idea for the invitations. could you please tell me what are the highlights of your friend’s birthday at McDo? thank you so much! :))

  18. THANK YOU ;))

    what wud b best for my invites? have a butterfly or a fairy shaped cutouts? i want to have 3 motifs for the guests.the colors that they’re going to choose n picking their dresses.it wud b ok if i choose midnight colors?dark violet, blue and red?or any suggestion?

  19. I really don’t know where to comment/ask questions haha but anyway, i’ll just do it here.
    Do you have an idea where I can get an illuminated dance floor? 😐 And how much does it cost?


    • Hi Eywa,

      I know one supplier who sets up illuminated dance floors. It is Confetti Effects, Inc. located in Manila. I’m just not sure how much. You can contact them through the following numbers and ask for their rates. Land line – 563-6638 and mobile 0920-907-9163. Hope this helps and happy birthday Eywa. Enjoy your debut preparations.

  20. hi. im going to celebrate my debut soon. i want a Barbie inspired theme. would you give me ideas that suits the theme? thanks! your website is really a BIG HELP.

    • Hi Clar

      With a Barbie themed debut party, you have to work with hues of Pink, Lavender, Flesh and White. For your souvenir items, perhaps you can have barbie accessories as your giveaways, and put a tag with your name and details on it. You can have miniature toys as souvenirs too, this will tell so much about how playful and fun you are as a person. You need to have impeccable make up and a cute barbie-like dress to wear to your party with a cute tiara. Be sure to keep your color scheme in mind while you are getting birthday invites, streamers and decorations. Your food can be kikay too! Have star-shaped candies and heart-shaped cookies on your guests’ tables. Have strawberry shakes, strawberry yogurt parfets and strawberry ice cream with sprinkles in your menu. For your games, you can have a dress up barbie challenge. You will of course get to choose which barbie has the best outfit! Spread pink bubble gums and candies around. For this theme you’ll be working with a lot of glitters too! Anyway, these are just the initial ideas. You have to THINK PINK to make this theme work. =)

      Happy Planning!

  21. Hi there!

    im planning for my debut on october. i know it’s a little bit early, but i would like to have a theme that is related in my course- tourism i want it to be classy and elegant. can you please give me some ideas? thanks!

    • Hello Marion,

      For a theme related to your course, why not try to showcase our country, the Philippines and have a Tatak Pinoy Maria Clara themed debut party. If you are planning to travel the world, you can also go for an Around the World theme where you showcase cultures of different countries on every table. Ask also your guests to play the part by donning in a country’s national costume; i.e. hanbok for Korea, terno for the Philippines, and kimono for Japan just to name a few. You can also have boarding passes as your invites. Hope this helps Marion and happy planning.

  22. hi. my debut is on may 11. and im kind of doing all the preparations independently. days are really coming up fast and im sort of pressured already. i really dont have a particular theme for my debut but its definitely a bubble party. im planning to rent bubble machines. can you give me some great ideas for the party regarding the bubbles? and im really having a headache thinking of a tagline for my party. I SERIOUSLY NEED HELP RIGHT NOW. im hoping for your response. thank you.

    • Hi Gillian,

      You can buy bubble makers that you see in toy stores. Cheaper ones can be seen in Divisoria. You can either send this along with your invites and ask them to bring it to the event or hand these at the entrance which will serve as one of your souvenirs. You can ask them to make bubbles on your grand entrance so that the venue will be filled with bubbles as you walk toward the stage. You can also buy battery operated bubble makers for a continuous bubble blowing experience. We have an article about a bubble party that you may want to read on. Click here. For taglines, you can have “Bubbly Gillian @ 18” or “An 18th Bubbly Birthday Bash!” “An 18th Bubbliciously Birthday Bash for Gillian is growing up so fast. ” “Gillian is turning 18 soon. Let’s celebrate and blow our bubbles up to the moon!” Hope this helps and happy birthday Gillian.

  23. Hi! I’m actually having a hard time thinking of a good theme for my debut. I don’t really want a formal debut, but not a simple party either. What to do? And the theme.. Hmm, I’m having a hard time thinking of a good theme, too. I’m into Filipino Celebrities. I’m also the adventurous, laid-back type. And I like having lots of fun. I hope you could help me! Thank you!

    • Hi Jam,

      A debut party need not be extravagant and traditional. A girl’s Debut in essence is her coming of age and what’s important is that all her loved ones are there to celebrate this special day with her. It is also important that your personality exudes during your celebration. You have to make people know who you are as a person, and the best way you can do this is to choose a theme that reflects your personality. If you are having a hard time choosing a theme, especially from among the birthday party themes we have laid out so far — http://debutideas.com/?cat=5 — look within yourself. Create something that you feel comfortable in. Since you like Pinoy celebrities, maybe you can have a simple FAMAS awards night party or perhaps a teleserye themed party. Or maybe you can pattern your party after a certain TV show that you like. I really can’t think of anything about your adventurous and laid-back personality because they are contradicting. If you want to have lots of fun, adding lots of fun games will do the trick. Don’t dwell too much on the 18’s because that might drag your guests into boredom after a while. just have a combination of two like 18 roses and 18 treasures, or 18 roses and 18 candles. Then proceed to entertainment and games — the fun part! Make sure to hire the right host or emcee. By having a fun emcee, there won’t be any dull moment and everyone will surely have fun.

      Hope this helps! 🙂

  24. my birthday’s in august and i have soo much to ask..
    what’s a nice theme?!! my favorite color’s purple… i don’t want it to be so extravagant, and not too simple…. i thought of fairytale or echanted but i think its too much, and i want it to be modern.. what’s a simpler version of a fairy tale themed party?? and is it okay if my cotillion girls don’t wear the same style of dress but same color? will it still look good? i hope you can help my messed up mind!! thank youuu :)))

    • Hi Analeigh,

      If you want a modern theme, a fairytale theme will not work because this entails you and your guests to be dressed like princes and princesses. If you want to have drama in your debut but minimize on extravagance, you may try having a masquerade theme in black and white. Your guests will be dressed in cocktail and evening gowns in black and white. In order to standout, you will be wearing your favorite color purple. Your decorations will be in different shades of purple to establish a purple motif. Your cotillion girls will likewise wear purple of a lighter shade than you so that you will still standout among them. The thing that is most essential in a masquerade party is the mask. Have someone give away masks at your entrance and ask your guests to wear them to create a magnificent ambiance. This will then serve as a party favor. Hope this helps and happy birthday.

  25. Hello. I’m planning for a Casino like theme just like what you suggested here.
    Actually, I love the Korean culture but the gown I’ll be wearing which is combination of light pink and light blue doesn’t match the Korean theme. Now, I thought that casino theme would be an okay concept since my favorite K-pop group has a fanclub name Black Jack and another fanclub is named VIP. Will this casino theme complement my dress? I already have a dress so I can’t change it.

    But if casino theme and Korean theme wouldn’t complement my dress, what would be a great theme suggestion that would complement a indoor garden venue (Ibarra’s garden) and would also complement my light pink and light blue gown.

    What would be the decorations needed?
    How bout the color for the tables and chairs?
    What would be a good souvenier?

    My gown would be pink and blue in light colors.
    What would you suggest that the guests will be wearing that would complement in the theme? I think black and red would be too striking, don’t you think?
    Is it okay that I would ditch the 18 candles and roses and just have 18 wishes for the girls and shots for the boys?
    But I like 18 roses but I don’t like dancing to waltz, what would be a good alternative to waltz? Something fun and modern.

    Thank you for your help. I will be waiting for your reply.
    My debut will be up for next month, May 23.
    Please help us. 😀

    • Hi DistresseDebutant,

      A casino theme would not work because casino theme’s colors are usually black, green, red, white, so your dress will totally not blend in with this theme. I’m afraid a Korean theme would not be possible if you already have a gown. In order to pull off an authentic Korean theme, you will need to wear a Hanbok (traditional Korean dress). You can however have a modern Korean K-pop theme and showcase your love of Korean culture. The K-pop theme I think is not a strict theme because what you aim is to really express your love of Korean pop culture so in this sense, you are free to do whatever decorations you wish. You just need to have key elements like putting some K-pop posters probably around your venue. You could also burn CDs of your favorite korean modern songs and have that as a party favor. Since you already have light blue and light pink as the color for your gown, choose a color and use that for your decorations. You can probably have light blue tablecloth and light pink table runners, light pink table napkins. Choose one for your main color and have the other color be an accent.

      For your 18s, you can choose modern Kpop songs to which your 18 roses can dance to. That would totally be cool. If you don’t want to dance at all, you can have games instead. Ask your 18s to come up the stage and have an impromptu game. We have some games in our Games page that you may want to consider. Happy Birthday!

  26. Hi!..I’ll be celebrating my 18th birthday this coming August 3, and i want to plan as early as i can to avoid cramming things up when the event is fast approaching. And i am asking if you could help me think of a unique theme for my party. if in in case you needed a short description about my personality so that you would have an idea that suits me best; i am just a simple girl, bubbly and fun-loving person. i am looking forward for your suggestions. Thank you and God bless always..:)

    • Hi Esther,

      Themes are often chosen by debutantes based on what their personality. You tell me that you are a fun loving girl so I was thinking of a Rave theme for your birthday. A rave theme is a simple but fun party to have. Rave parties are informal so you don’t need to have a full program. You also don’t need to wear a gown, just a cute standout cocktail dress will do. Also in a rave theme, you will have more time to mingle with your friends and just really have fun. Here is an article that you might want to read. Rave theme debut party. Hope this helps and happy birthday.

  27. Hello debut ideas 😀 thanks for the tips and all. 😀 I was just wondering how can I have a willie wonka and the chocolate factory-ish theme 😀 I’ve already thought of having the golden ticket as my invitation 😀 with maybe a real chocolate 😀 thanks and more power

  28. hi Debut Ideas! 🙂
    Im having my debut on October and i’m planning it to be whimsical-themed. Can u suggest appropriate favors and words that could replace the usual 18s? Im having 18 wishes, 18 candles and 18 roses. Hoping to have your reply soon. Thank you very much. 🙂

    • Hi Nicole23,

      When I’m thinking of whimsical, it reminds me of fairies “tinkerbell” in particular with her fanciful ways. You can use 18 fireflies for 18 candles and 18 pixie dusts for 18 wishes. Whimsical is something that is playful and comical and funny in a good way so try having 18 jokes, 18 laughs and 18 fond memories as well where your 18s will share a story about you in a humiliating circumstance or their fondest memories of you. For 18 roses, you may try having a different flower. For instance, for me, daisies particularly yellow daisies have a very vibrant hue which exudes life, energy and happiness. Hope this helps.

  29. hi i’m a bit confused about the theme i’m trying to pull off for my debut. i’m thinking “white beach” cause the venue is going to be at a pool side resort by the beach. i wanted to ask for tips to make the program go with my theme. i was thinking of using paper boats to decorate the tables or the pool. i’m not so sure about it though. hope you could help me!

    • Hi Rielle,

      You’re almost there! I think paper boats are cool, you can make them in various colors and scatter them around (in the pool, on tables, everywhere!) That would be very colorful.

      For your program, you can use 18 floating candles and 18 boats! For your 18 floating candles, each of your 18 friends will place a floating candle on the pool and as it floats towards you. After placing the floating candle on the pool, they give their speech. You can also do this with your 18 boats.

      You can include a game also towards the end of your party where guests get a prize, which is indicated in one of the paper boats scattered on the pool. Of course for this one, your guests will need to be in their swimming outfits! Just note in your invitation that they need to have their swimwear ready during your party.

      Hope this helps!

  30. hi! my 18th birthday is getting closer and closer yet I can’t think of a good theme for my party.I want it to be on a garden or something like open field yet I don’t have ideas on where is the cheaper garden or open field to celebrate it. Can you suggest a theme and place for me to celebrate it. I am located at Pasay and my budget is just around 60k with a visitors of around 200-230..I will wait for your response.. Thank you!

    • Hi Tryxzy,

      You might want to go into some venues in our Venues page to look for the venue that you are looking for but I’m thinking that 60k would not be enough for a garden venue with 200 to 230 people. You should be able to budget your money wisely. Be able to subdivided your money to important things for your party. You can use our budget calculator so that you’ll know if you are exceeding your alloted budget. You can hold it in your own house or ask a friend who has a garden to do it at theirs so you can save your money for other things like your gown, invites and food. You can do some DIY like your invites and decorations to cut some more costs. Hope this helps.

  31. Ps: i’m into music and i’m a fan of ne-yo, an rnb artist. I also like to have a hint of around the world theme. What is ur suggestion?? Overall, it would be a fairytale-hollywood/grammy-concert liked-around the world theme debut. What will i do, i like those themes?!?!? Lastly, i want my party imspired by the movie, ever after: a cinderella story. Pls help me!

    • Hi Jhoan,

      There are themes that you can combine with other themes. Unfortunately, the themes you want cannot be mixed with each other. You’d be all over the place if you do a fairytale / grammy number! You can choose only one theme, which will dominate your event.

      But I still have an idea for you! Perhaps you can dress up like Drew Barrymore in Ever After at the same time have a red carpet. It’s as if your guests are attending a movie premiere of YOUR life! You can get away with this one because “Ever After” is a movie. You can dress up like a fairy-cinderella like Drew, while your guests can get dressed up to the nines like their favorite Hollywood superstars! 🙂

      Hope my idea helps!

  32. hi. i am celebrating my debut this coming december. and as of now, we are starting to plan for my debut. until now, we havent decided about my motif. i really want color pink or just touch of pink with other color onto it. can you please suggest a color for my motif. and also for the decorations. also, i havent decided for the theme. i want it to be a classy and elegant. i want to be princess-like party. i also want to have a unique invitations and souvenirs. but i still dont have ideas for it. hoping for your reply. thank you.

    • Hi Kristel,

      Sorry for not replying sooner. A touch of pink on a debut is really a girl thing. Pink is usually the universal color for debutantes. You can spice it up by combining it with lavender, purple or magenta. For decorations, hang drapes with the lighter shade of pink with the other color as accents. Place baby pink table cloth with purple table runners. For invitations, you can have a scrolled invite since your theme is a princess theme. Scrolled invites pictures. For souvenirs, it depends on what you like. choosing your party favor. You can give away tiara shaped chocolates, princess cellphone trinkets, chocolates placed in cute boxes of your color motif, etc. Hope this helps.

  33. Hello! I’m having my debut on July, I want to have some vintage effect on my party but I also want it to be in retro, will a vintage glam be a nice theme? tips please! thanks!

    • Hi Sara,

      When you say vintage, does this mean the Hollywood glam sort of thing? Retro is more of the 70s flower power right? well, they would be a different thing altogether. so im not sure if you can combine them. Here is an article on Hollywood glam that might give you inspiration. Old Hollywood.

      As for the retro thing, think of Austin Powers retro with the big hair and colorful outfits and you can’t go wrong.

      Source: http://www.emmagem.com

      Hope this helps and happy birthday Sara.

  34. Hello, I plan on having a debut at the end of July this year and my theme is a color motif of Peacock colors (turquoise, blues, and golds?). I want to know your insight on how I can make the invites, creative entrance ideas, decorating ideas, ways to keep guests entertained, and any other insight of yours would be appreciated! 🙂 Please and thank you.

    • Hi Jovanna,

      What lovely and lively colors you have. I’m sure it your party will be super fun. We’re sorry that we were not able to reply to your queries as soon as possible. Anyway, since your motiff is peacock colors, what I can suggest that you do is buy some peacock feathers in Divisoria. You may be able to get a cheaper price if you buy in bulk. You can use it to decorate your invites. Construct an invite such that when one opens it, feathers or cut out paper will spread like when a peacock spreads its tail to reveal very interesting colors. You can also paste a single peacock feather in your envelope like the pictures below.

      Source: tastefullyentertaining.blogspot.com

      Table centerpieces like the ones above can really create a colorful and vibrant ambiance.

      Take a look at the picture below for a simpler table centerpiece.

      Source: weddingbells.ca

      Or instead of vases for your table centerpieces, you can have feathered hats, bags, used as table centerpieces and have a Sex in the City type of theme where glamour is the order of the night.

      Hope this helps Jovanna and happy birthday.

  35. hi debut ideas! it’s nicole again. how about my invites? do you have any ideas how to have unique ones for my theme and also the wordings? games as well and my entrance. im already exhausted from thinking about things whimsical. please help me.

  36. hello debut ideas! my debut will be on march 2011. my mom and my aunt are starting to prepare things 🙂 i would just like to ask if you can give some other theme and program ideas for my debut?

  37. We celebrated my daughter’s six birthday at Fairies and Dragons and it was an absolute success! The girls were completely fascinated with the place and the activities. My daughter wants to do her next birthday there too!!

  38. HELLO…i will be having my debut on december 20,2010..i dont know what will be my theme..we decided to celebrate it at great eastern hotel..i want a unique theme..i want other term for 18 candles,roses,gifts,wine,etc..can you help me?? iwant some kind of a beauty queen party.something like that..beauty queen with spongebob designs…hahah..i dont know..can you help me plss……it’s needed ASAP..i hope you could help me..thanks.

    • hi Abby,

      A beauty pageant theme with yellow as color motif would be a good one. Spongebob, however, would not fit in. Beauty pageants are all about glamour and beauty which is what you are to become… a beautiful lady. My suggestion is to just stick with that. Take inspiration from designs of pageant programs for your stage and invites. For 18s, you can have 18 scepters for 18 roses, 18 crowns or 18 sparkles for 18 candles, and 18 awards for 18 gifts or treasures. Hope this helps.

  39. i also want a yellow motif…can you help me plssss…….maybe there would be artist that would come..help me,in invitations,programs…i will wait for your response.

  40. Hello debut ideas,

    I’m celebrating my 18th birthday this December 17 and i still can’t think of any theme. Well, since I’m living outside the Philippines, I want my foreign friends to enjoy and remember my debut because they didn’t celebrate their birthday the way we do. I’m actually kind of rock chic and I saw your ideas about “the party that rocks” however I don’t really want it to be really really rock-ish. I want my debut to be mix with clubbing as well? And also, for my grand entrance I want to wear a ball gown. So this is why I can’t really think of a right theme.

    So I hope you really really can help with dilemma.



    • Hi Hannah,

      Sorry for not replying sooner. I would think by this time you already have a theme.. If you went through with the rocker chic theme, that’s fine even if you are not a rocker yourself. It will depend on the type of music that you will be playing and the outfits that you asked your guests to be in. Maybe combining it with a rave theme will actually do the trick. You can still wear a ball gown for your grand entrance. What you can do is have separates like a bustier top to combine with a long hoop skirt for the grand entrance and then the bustier top and a cute skirt (more comfortable) for the rest of the evening. Hope this helps.

  41. Hi, my party is on November 5 already. I’ve planned on having a bathing suit party and bought flip flops for my invites, and that my guests should only wear black or white swimming attires. Is that a good idea? What should I wear for my party? Hope you could help me.

    • Hi Joie,

      I’m assuming this is a pool party right? Your idea is cool btw but I guess it will be hard to find only black and white swimsuits for your guests so it might be hard for them to adhere to your theme. Also for those self-conscious guests, they might not want to wear only swimsuits. An alternative for this is having a Bohemian inspired pool party. That way, for those who are confident to wear only swimsuits may do so and others may don on maxi dresses on top of their swimsuits for the duration of the program. click here for pictures. Hope this helps.

  42. hello. Im having my debut on December and i’m planning it to be in Hollywood theme. Can you suggest appropriate words that could replace the usual 18roses,18candles,18treasures gifts and 18shots Hoping to have your reply soon. Thank you so much

  43. hi debut ideas! i will be having my party this year and i’m thinking of a japanese themed party. could you please suggest any souvenirs that are inexpensive? and ideas for my 18s would really help.i don’t want to stick to the traditional roses or candles. also, the debuts i have attended have long programs and the guests leave immediately afterwards.any ideas on how i can make my guests stay?without those drinking sessions? hope to hear from you soon! thank you!!:)

    • Hi Marie,

      You can take inspiration from our article Zen Theme on how to pull off a japanese inspired theme party. For your 18s, you may try 18 lotuses for 18 roses (for props, you may have origami lotuses as real lotuses may be expensive) or 18 cherry blossoms (for props too, you can substitute white small malaysian mums). For 18 candles, you can have 18 lanterns and for 18 treasures/gifts, try having 18 bento boxes, 18 origamis (18s will read a note written on their folded paper.. it may be a greeting or something to describe their gift to you) or 18 bonsais (these are expensive though) and instead of them giving you a gift, you will give them these bonsais as a token for being a special part of your life. Having a maximum of three or four 18s is necessary if you want to keep your audience staying until the end of your party. Ask your 18s to keep their speech short but meaningful. For the dances, limit it to 30 seconds per person. Games almost always keep parties lively so you may add games to your program, spacing them out appropriately. Hope this helps. Happy Birthday Marie!

  44. my debut will be on dec. 3 or dec. 11 (depends upon the venue) and i still don’t have a theme or motif color. if its on december 11 it will be a garden venue, what do you think is good for that? i opt for the butterfly theme but i still don’t know what colors to use. we are on a tight budget too. HELP. I AM SERIOUSLY FREAKING OUT.

    • Hi Smiles,

      Yes, the butterfly theme would be perfect for a garden venue. Butterfly colors are very cute and dainty, and practically any color would work. You can have the orange shades, blues of different hues, purple and pinks, etc. the possibilities are endless. Happy Birthday Smiles!

  45. hi 🙂 im planning to have a pink and black zebra themed party, it really fits my personality 🙂 any suggestions for this ? 😉 THANKS !

    • Hi Aia!

      That’s a cool theme! Black + pink is a very popular combination nowadays and animal prints are also very “in”. I have this impression that you want a sort of kikay jungle theme for your party. Maybe you can ask your guests to wear animal prints. Zebra will serve as the Queen of your jungle so it’s like the queen has called its people to come and celebrate with her. Your theme is fun and cool and sophisticated at the same time. Why sophisticated? Because only a few people can pull off wearing animal prints! I suggest that you include another supporting color (not just pink and black) because if you only have pink and black, that would be too insistent. You can add white for instance, to sort of neutralize and relax the eye and just make pink and black your highlights.

      Hope this helps and happy birthday! 🙂

  46. THANKS a lot 😛 ur right, a really love that colors 🙂 hmm, any replacement for the traditional 18’s ? 🙂 im planning to call my party “the pink diva party” 🙂 is that cool ? 🙂

  47. hi debut ideas.. 🙂 i’m having a hard time in choosing the theme for my debut. I was thinking about combining masquerade and runway inspired theme..but i don’t know how. I’ll be having my debut on hotel rembrandt it will be on february and my color motif will be red. Can you please give me more suggestion on how can i make my party more lively and fun at the same time? And what words can replace 18roses, 18gifts, and 18candles.. Do you think i can add 18catwalks? Is it a good idea? And can you please give me suggestions on how can i decorate the place? And invites.. Thanks 🙂

  48. Hi debut ideas. I’m planning to celebrate my debut. And it’s gonna be this March 5, 2011 already. I still don’t have any theme in mind. But as much as possible, I want it to be some sort of fairytale/princess inspired. Would it match if I’ll have my gown colored blue? Baby or Royal Blue?

    As for the location, we already have that.The thing is, would caterers allow us to just rent tables and chairs without the food servings? Because my mom would want to cook the food herself. And will the caterers shoulder the decoration of the tables and chairs?

    Can you help me please? thanks.

    • Hi Jhoana Rose,

      Yes powder or baby blue would be perfect for a princess theme and that would be a great theme to have. Of course every girl dreams of being a princess even for one night. For the catering dilemma, I doubt if a caterer would want to cater without showcasing their food. I think what you can do is to ask them if they are willing to rent out their equipment like chaffing dishes, plates, silverware, etc. You can also ask some party decorators click here for list if they would be able to do that for you and then your mom will take care of the food. If not, then I think you need to just rent tables and chairs and chaffing dishes (to heat the food) separately. Hope all is well with your party planning.

  49. helo .. can u help me of thinking a theme , i want it to be unique but not too expensive ,
    my favorte color is sky blue .. I want it to be fun and not totally formal and not so social , i want all my guests would enjoy it ..
    can u give me some ideas ! do you think chinese inspired would be great ?

    • Hi Joy,

      Chinese inspired theme are usually colored themed and they usually combine the colors red and gold. So if your thinking of Chinese inspired, these are the colors you should pick. For sky blue color, I’m thinking of something summery, the beach or anything outdoorsy. You may want to also look into that. This theme would be informal and totally fun. You may ask your guests to wear comfortable sundresses or maxi dresses for the girls and khaki and white polo shirt for the males. Hope this helps.

  50. hi!my daughter is turning 18 next year.been thinking of a unique theme for her party.a friend suggested to make it a latin since my daughter wants to wear a red gown..can you help me??tnx.

    • Hi Marie,

      Latin is a pretty interesting theme. Your daughter will need to learn some serious dance moves though as Latin encompasses vivacious dance moves that is so interesting to watch. Although Latin themes are known for its eye-popping colors, the color red is the most popular color for it and would go well with a Latin theme. Happy planning.

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