Formal sweet 16 birthday ideas

Written by janece bass
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Formal sweet 16 birthday ideas
Plan a formal Sweet 16 party to celebrate a very special birthday. (party image by ennavanduinen from

Celebrate your Sweet 16 birthday with a formal party that signifies your coming of age. This milestone birthday allows you to look over your life, recognise and appreciate all the people who've added to it and look forward to the future. Having a formal party puts all of the emphasis on you and your special day.

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Choose a fancy theme to keep your party formal. Use a prince or princess theme, a Hollywood "star" theme, awards show theme, a masquerade or any twist you want to serve as a formal theme. Sweet 16 Party Ideas suggests dressing up in a princess ball gown and inviting your guests to do the same if you want a princess-inspired fairy tale celebration. Even a party centred around candy can be formal---if you dress it up.


Use your colour scheme to create a formal party. Mix your favourite colour with a complementary colour, such as pink and white, lavender and silver, red and gold---or any colours you want. Sweet 16 Party Ideas suggests a black and white formal theme with black and white decorations and invitations, and asking guests to wear black and white. Or, have a monochromatic theme, such as a "white" party, where all of your guests wear white.


Send out fancy invitations to inform your guests of the formal nature of your party. The invitations could be as elegant as wedding invitations with velum, fancy font and using formal wording with no abbreviations. Sprinkle gold or silver glitter, as suggested by Kids' Birthday Party Guide, for a fancy effect. If you have any special requests, such as asking guests to wear a certain colour or bring a mask for a masquerade, mention it in the invitations.


Think of a formal event---such as a wedding, prom or awards show---when deciding on your decorations. Lay down a fancy carpet, such as red carpet, that matches your theme and colours for guests to walk down. Kids' Birthday Party Guide advises using flowers, candles, streamers, table linens, strings of lights and other decorations to turn your party location into a beautiful backdrop for your party. Use fancy crystal vases, bowls and stemware to keep with the formal theme.

Entertainment and Activities

Hire a DJ, band or impersonators to perform live at the party. Activities could include dancing, speeches, slide shows, photo shoots or other walks down memory lane. A candle-lighting ceremony is another activity you can have at your Sweet 16. Sweet 16 Party Ideas explains that each candle represents someone important to the birthday celebrant, who should make a short speech or share a sentiment about that person as she lights the candle. For example, if she met her best friend when she was seven, she should say something about her best friend as she lights her seventh candle.

Food and Dessert

Serve finger foods such as hors d'oeuvres on silver platters, and a three-, five- or seven-course meal on formal dinnerware. Even if the food is hamburgers and French fries, it can be served in a formal manner. Dessert can include a three-tiered cake, as suggested by Kids' Birthday Party Guide, a chocolate fondue fountain or a large assortment of candy arranged in a decorative manner in glass jars.


Pass out party favours that fit in with the theme or colours of the party. A CD of special songs that were played could include graphics that feature the date, the birthday boy and the occasion. Personalised candy can be presented in small gift boxes or other formal packaging. Any favours you want to give your guests can appear fancy if you dress them up with ribbon, tulle or other decorative packaging. Sweet 16 Party Ideas suggests personalised favours or small gift bags, such as a small purse stuffed with personal spa products.

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