September 06, 2021
With half a century under your belt you know exactly what you want and exactly how you like it. But we all love a bit of inspiration from time to time and that's where we come in. Over the last eleven years we've helped lots of customers design the perfect 50th birthday gift and been privilege to some of the surprises they've been planning alongside. You really are a creative and imaginative bunch! So, here are the 50 most inspired and totally fantastic ideas for having a blast on your 50th birthday or to help you plan the best celebrations for your bestie!
1. Cocktail Party! This is straight from my husbands play book - he is BRILLIANT at organising big birthday celebrations. Book a professional barman to come to your home, get your posh frocks on and celebrate in suave sophistication.
2. Try a tasting menu at a posh restaurant. If there's ever a time to push the boat out and check out any local, or not so local, restaurant endeavours by previous Masterchef finalists then a milestone birthday is it.
3. Or book out your favourite small restaurant for just you and your friends. Another idea straight from my husband's playbook. Told you he was good at the birthday things.
4. Indulge in a spa day. Something you can do with your pals, or with your partner, or on your own for perfect peace! Either way you'll emerge looking and feeling fabulous at 50.
5. Go on a yoga retreat. A day, a weekend, a week - whatever you need! A wonderful gift for body and mind!
6. Take it to the river. From a bottomless brunch on a pleasure cruiser, to canal trips to floating along the Thames in a woodfired hot tub - there's almost no end to the weird and wonderful things you can do on your birthday on the river.
7. Sleep with the Lions. A few zoos and wildlife sanctuarys now offer lodges and overnight stay options. This one at London Zoo is next to the Lion enclosure and in very short hearing distance of the monkeys! Or get up close and personal with the wolves in Port Lympne. This one is a lovely way to involve the whole family in your birthday celebrations.
8. Enjoy an Afternoon Tea. Quintessentially British maybe, but there are sooo many different themes ones and options in so many different venues now. Find something traditional and exquisite (I can highly recommend the Fortnum and Mason experience) or go wild and adventurous.
9. Get all crafty. Find a local class and make something beautiful. I have a hankering to try some stained glass making personally!
10. Or learn how to cook something you've always loved. Whether is a masterclass in bread baking, cake decorating, or biscuit icing. You might even master the epic birthday cake that you've always wanted!
11. Take in a show. From Hamilton to The Book of Mormon, tear wrenching to gut splittingly funny - Theatretown has it all. And you can glam up the experience as much as you want.
12. BBQ a big one! Not a demon with the coals? Book a splendid company to come along and make something amazing that is pulled or marinade or otherwise blinking delicious and leave you to slowly marinade with your glass of red!
13. Or go posh and hire a chef team to do a silver service event in your own kitchen. A very elegant way to truly spoil the birthday boy or girl.
14. Make your own rum. This Bristol based experience is a great way to celebrate your 50th birthday. You get all the knowledge, a fine amount of tasting and your own rum to take home. And they keep the recipe in case you ever want to reorder it.
15. Book a party house. If lots of you want to celebrate that big birthday together and you're based all over the country, then a party house might be the perfect solution. Top tip, ask the owners who they use to clean the property and book them yourself at the end of your stay too.
16. Run a race. If you've always felt the urge to complete a 10k, a marathon, or even a cycling event then this turning 50 malarkey might just be the impetus you need to push you to ticking it off the list. Use it or lose it as they say!
17. See a new part of the world. The world is big and wide with so many places to explore and experience. So whether you go to the next town over, or visit fifty of the most beautiful places in the world, pack your bags and have an explore.
18. Stay in a Treehouse. This is one on my list for sure. Have a look at the amazing treetop stays around the world here.
19. Invest in a work of art. Find something that speaks to your heart and you'll always treasure it. For at least the next 50 years anyway! Browse a local gallery or have a look at the affordable art fair.
20. Or go on a gallery tour to admire the pieces you can't take home!
21. Take a different view. Lots of our destination prints have featured The Shard or The London Eye as a much loved location for the big 5-0. Enjoy a delicious birthday meal and a panorama to boot.
22. Add some candyfloss! Funfairs are an excellent way to enjoy an unusual 50th birthday, but maybe start the cocktails after the Wurlitzers?
23. Or take a more chilled approach to some beach time fun. Fish, chips and champagne on the beach sounds like an ideal way to enjoy a big birthday. Pack a good waterproof picnic blanket and maybe a windbreaker in the UK!
24. Create a 50 day countdown to the big day. Nothing enhances our pleasure of something quite like anticipation. Take 50 envelopes and write 50 notes or hints as to what the big event might be. You could even include mini gifts like tiny chocolates, flavoured tea bags, cartoon cut outs... anything! A bit like an advent calendar for birthdays!
25. Go for gold. Traditional gifting would suggest gold as a theme for your fifty years. A trip to the Gold Coast might be an option, or the Golden Mile if that's a bit closer! Or host a golden jubilee celebration of your own and see how best everyone can embrace the theme. Champagne is gold, right?
26. Take a chocolate tour. A quick search of AirBnB experiences will almost guarantee a suitable tour in just about any decent sized city. But you don't have to limit it to chocolate. There are gin tours, coffee tours, infamous murderer tours - uh, you can keep that one!
27. Create your own signature scent. Another fab activity that you can do solo or as part of a group. In your fifties, you want to smelling AMAZING.
28. Learn to dance. In a day you can pick up a lot of skill in a rhythm like salsa or bachata and then find a club to dance the night away and practice your new skills.
29. Score tickets for a big sporting event. I claim this one! We managed to get tickets to Wimbledon this year so I could take a friend who had always wanted to go to experience it. If tennis isn't your thing, maybe football, rugby or even racing. You can make a big birthday celebration even bigger by adding some box action.
30. A mani pedi en masse. Similar to the spa day idea but without needing to take off your clothes, which means you can combine this with a delicious brunch, or city exploration day.
31. Climb a mountain. Get some air into those lungs to make you feel truly alive on your birthday! If you fancy the support of a guide to get the most of your day then have a look here.
32. Or disappear INSIDE a cave that is strung with zip wires and trampolines and bounce your heart out.
33. Did someone say hot tub? Book a lodge with a hot tub, chill some wine, knock up some canapes and away you go. It's easier to just google "hot tub holidays" or AirBnB has added it as a filter so you can see any rentals that have this added feature.
34. Combine with a festival. You don't have to celebrate your 50th birthday on the actual day, especially if you want to go large at a music festival in that year. Turn it into a glamping event, with a bell tent and a real bed for ultimate luxury.
35. Visit a tailor and get a bespoke item of clothing made just for you. Maybe a full length coat, or a fabulous suit.
36. Or get a tattoo! This one is definitely for life and maybe one that you can convince your bestie to do with you, but might be a solo endeavour! Choose wisely young one.
37. Have a grown up slumber party. Line up your favourite movies, get the popcorn in, and have a blast.
38. Create your own casino. You can buy a kit to do it yourself, or hire a casino party organiser to do it for you.
39. Make it black tie. Either as part of the casino night above, or just for some elegant dining.
40. Have an eventful day of forging and come home with a ring, a knife, a hammer .... or a sword! You'll never forget this experience.
41. Learn how to make cocktails like the pros! This is a very hand skill to be fair. And one that is sure to have you in demand at every event for the NEXT 50 years too. Just be careful how many tasters you indulge in or you could have difficulty remembering what you've learned!
42. Get a new outdoorsy skill for your birthday like horse riding, archery or Stand Up paddleboarding. There are plenty of places that host taster days.
43. Fancy Dress Shindig. We may have spent our 30s saying NO MORE to fancy dress, or it might be that you have a wardrobe full of potential outfits for such an occasion. Or join in on a themed event like the Secret Cinema.
44. Oh, it's a big birthday and you're totally worth it. Hire an Aston Martin to drive around in for a couple of days. Pull up at a fancy restaurant, a lovely hotel, the kids school.... anywhere you like.
45. Road trip! Maybe not in the Aston Martin, but a birthday road trip could be all kinds of cool. Pick a direction, a couple of pals or even a convoy of cars and no strict route or time to arrive by. Stop at anything you find interesting on the way. Create a Spotify mixtape before you go and blast it loud.
46. Throw It Down. A pottery class from the pottery experts at Denby! Added to my list.
47. A progressive dinner party. No, not one where the topic of discussion is social reform, but a tour of your favourite dining establishments where you change venue for each course. You might want to go with starters or tasters for the first three venues! Expand your 50th birthday night across the whole town and back again.
48. A wine tasting. A good one will explain so much about the vino that you never knew before. A great one will let you take wine home too.
49. See some live music. Choose your favourite and shake your booty.
50. Get everyone to help you create a bucket list for the next 50 years. You may not agree to them all, but it will be so inspiring to see what your friends think you'd love. And have a bloody awesome time with your nearest and dearest! Happy Birthday.
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December 29, 2022
December 29, 2022
The traditional wall planner needed some Betsy magic that's for sure. Here's how our wall planner life used to play out, tell me if this resonates. You buy what you think is a BIG wall planner. It's been beautifully designed too, so it looks great on the wall. Then you write ONE THING on a day and, *poof*, no more space for anything else on that day.
Does that sound familiar?
November 10, 2022