Most people end up celebrating their 30th birthday whether they want to or not. We know it can be difficult to gracefully say goodbye to your twenties, and it might be tempting to spend the day in bed wallowing in how aggravating it feels to be thirty.
Trust us, spending the day celebrating in a special way with family and friends will without a doubt brighten the mood. These 30th birthday ideas are fun, whimsical, and don't take themselves too seriously, which you shouldn't either. Get your party hat on and start planning an unforgettable 30th birthday party for you or your loved one.
Transform a Boring Store Bought Cake into a Showstopper
01 of 15
Remind the Guest of Honor That They're Golden
Sometimes the man or woman of the day might need a little reassurance. Pick a theme and decor that will remind them how awesome it is to be thirty. Accent the theme "You're Golden" with 3-0 birthday balloons, chalkboard signs, and tons of gold accents.Continue to 2 of 15 below.
02 of 15
Craft a Wooden Birthday Banner
This isn't some standard birthday, it's a milestone one. Make sure the place where you're celebrating is decorated to the max. If you don't have much of a decoration budget, consider crafting garlands and other decor pieces. This wooden birthday banner is a huge upgrade from streamers and balloons.Continue to 3 of 15 below.
03 of 15
Consider a Friends Reunion Theme
Many people welcoming in their 30th year were into the show Friends. Is your friend or family member one of them? Consider a Friends Reunion theme and serve coffee and muffins like you'd find at Central Perk. If the guest of honor was obsessed with another TV show growing up, consider a theme around that one instead.Continue to 4 of 15 below.
04 of 15
Create Ambiance With a Paper Lantern Project
If you're lacking a birthday theme but want to have an elegant outdoor party at dusk, craft some paper lanterns to set the scene. Keep other decorations simple and let the highlight of the party be the outdoor scenery, food, and drink.Continue to 5 of 15 below.
05 of 15
Personalize a Birthday Sign About the Birth Year
Remind everyone what the world was like in the year they were born. Many of these signs can be purchased and customized. However, if you have graphic design skills, you can make one quite easily. Include facts like the price of gas, who was president, and other noteworthy facts.Continue to 6 of 15 below.
06 of 15
Mix Up a Birthday Cake Cocktail
If you want to get fancy, create at least one signature cocktail for the night. This birthday cake cocktail is both delicious and appropriate.Continue to 7 of 15 below.
07 of 15
Remember a Dirty Thirty Party With a Photobooth
One party idea that has become really popular in recent years is setting up a photo booth. Make sure you lay out props so guests are encouraged to take silly, memorable photos. You can pick up a 30th themed birthday party set online or make your own.Continue to 8 of 15 below.
08 of 15
Cheers and Beers to Thirty Years
If the person turning 30 loves beer, consider the theme "Cheers to Thirty Years." Throw the bash at a local brewery or have their favorite beer stocked and ready at another location. Set up games like beer pong to get the guests into the occasion.Continue to 9 of 15 below.
09 of 15
Make a Marquee Out of Balloons
One relatively simple and easy way to create a conversation piece for a 30th birthday party is to craft a balloon marquee. Spell out a word based on your theme, the guest of honor's name, or just something to brighten the mood, like the "Yay" you see here.Continue to 10 of 15 below.
10 of 15
End Your Roaring Twenties in Style
If you want to go even further back into the past, throw a Roaring Twenties birthday party. Have everyone dress in their finest 1920's inspired clothing and decorate the place with Art Deco style fixtures.Continue to 11 of 15 below.
11 of 15
Upgrade From Standard Jell-O Shots
This isn't a 21st birthday party so don't settle for the standard Jell-O shots. Enhance this cocktail with whipped cream and sprinkles and set them out on cake trays of varying heights. The nice thing about this recipe is that it can serve as both a drink and a dessert. Just be sure that any guests under the legal drinking age know to stay away!Continue to 12 of 15 below.
12 of 15
Spell Out Thirty on the Cake
This concrete cake sets the scene for a modern and luxe birthday celebration. Keep the other decorations and food choices simple and refined. To ensure your guests are in line with the look and feel of this party, require that they wear cocktail attire.Continue to 13 of 15 below.
13 of 15
Throw a Bourbon Bash
For the bourbon-loving person in your life, throw a party based on the theme, "Aged Thirty Years." One idea is to have a hip bar set up with a bartender serving up craft cocktails. If this seems too expensive to plan from scratch, rent out space at your favorite bar and ask the establishment if you can decorate in advance and bring in your own food.Continue to 14 of 15 below.
14 of 15
Transform Cheap Napkins Into Confetti Napkins
Sometimes small details make a big difference. If you are throwing the party at a place the guest of honor is familiar with, make it feel like they are stepping into somewhere completely different by decorating and rearranging furniture. Remember that small details don't need to be expensive. For instance, this simple DIY will elevate your napkins without needing to spend a ton of money.Continue to 15 of 15 below.
15 of 15
Label Everything with the Year
Not that you constantly want to be reminding the guest of honor how old they just turned, but in some ways you should. If you're decorating budget is limited, focus on really emphasizing the food and drink spread. Create small printable labels and adhere them to toothpicks. Place the toothpicks everywhere. Mixing in themed labels will have a large impact and will hardly cost a thing.