Author Topic: Thinking of setting up part time  (Read 1127 times)

Areyouhappydad

  • FiveStars
  • *****
  • Posts: 1588
    • View Profile
Thinking of setting up part time
« on: April 21, 2013, 04:03:47 PM »
As many of you know, this is a hobby for me and one I love. Having come home from a party that my daughter was invited to, my wife reckons I could do a better job than the lady who put on a bit of music, did a couple of magic tricks, played pass the parcel and musical bumps and handed out balloon dogs and swords.
So, I was wondering, to set up a basic children's party business, what do people think is the minimum equipment requirement (disco equipment, magic tricks, etc) and do you think this could be done within an initial budget of £400 (to include liability insurance).
Where do you look for decent party magic tricks (large stuff they canal see, but not technically difficult to master).
I know that there are many facets to a business but as a dipping my toe in the water experience (probably during school holiday time to avoid conflict with my teaching job) any help or advice would be welcome.
« Last Edit: January 01, 1970, 01:00:00 AM by Guest »
Kindest Regards
Stuart

We all have our cross to bear, but some of us need more wood than others!

serensmum

  • TwoStars
  • **
  • Posts: 153
    • View Profile
Re: Thinking of setting up part time
« Reply #1 on: April 21, 2013, 06:33:32 PM »
Thanks for the comment on my superheroes, these went to a friend of my daughters at his birthday party yesterday which prompted the why don't you sell these/do children's party's debate. The thing that puts me off is the initial outlay for the insurance without knowing if I will get it back.

But anyway back to your post. Do you actually need magic tricks? Just because this lady did some doesn't mean that you have to. You can make an entertaining routine with balloons, if you do a YouTube search you will get some ideas of what can be done and maybe come up with one of your own. Then if you are going to do the party games as well time will fly or you could make balloons for all the kids while the parents do the games. Just a few thoughts but there will be others on here who are in a much better position to offer you advice.

Kim
« Last Edit: January 01, 1970, 01:00:00 AM by Guest »

lee ross

  • TwoStars
  • **
  • Posts: 105
    • View Profile
    • http://www.balloonprofessor.co.uk
Re: Thinking of setting up part time
« Reply #2 on: April 21, 2013, 11:38:43 PM »
Hi I started with 1 bag of asorted balloons with just the intent of makeing some swords and 1 balloon animals for my kids birthday party.

Other kids mothers started to ask me to do there kids partys so i bought 4 bags of assorted mix that cost me About £20. that was enough to do a frends christining and a couple of family and freinds partys. i only charged £20 to £40 but some gave me more money as they had never seen anything other than the basics.

so that £20 turned into about £200. i bought 10 assorted mix and some storage boxes. i kept going on from there and 2 years later i have guarentee work just about every sat and sun at local restaurant. I have kitted out the spare room with shelving and balloon bag, popcorn and candy floss machine. I will also be looking into a slush machine when i have saved up.

The machines are extras i offer when making balloons for partys. i have so many plans but it all takes time. I have done this while continuing to work full time at my main job. it is hard some times when you work 7 days but my kids have just had the best birthday part Ever with balloons and all the machines and thats worth it as well as i get paid to play with balloons and some of my best customers are from my main job.

You have the advantage of playing with balloons as a hobby and have seen some of your great designs. So i would say go for it, do some chariety events where you charge per balloon and give a percentage to the charity event, its a great way to get Experiance line work if you have stock then use that and put that money earned into new stock.(I think i should get commision from graham for that advise.)
« Last Edit: January 01, 1970, 01:00:00 AM by Guest »
Thanks

Lee ross
AKA The Balloon Professor

Pam Pearce

  • FiveStars
  • *****
  • Posts: 1058
    • View Profile
    • http://www.balloonsandtunes.co.uk
Re: Thinking of setting up part time
« Reply #3 on: April 22, 2013, 12:22:59 AM »
dont just charge for balloons you need to charge for your time to....Even if you are just having a go... If you charge proper rates you get the money to buy better equipment, quicker... why charge a low rate.. charge what you think you are worth...Believe me others will think you are worth what you charge!! the times I have had people say to me  "well yes he/she is not like you BUT he was free/cheap".. I much prefer to hear them say "I thought they where expensive, but when you see what they do they are worth every penny!!"

As a Teacher you should be aware that the most honest audience you can have are children...(adults can get drunk and ignore you) If you dont know your stuff/show they will tell you you are rubbish and will tell their parents they dont want you at their parties.. and you are out of business as quick as you joined it..

You did not start twisting balloons and instantly have an audience routine of top class models, we all have to work at it .... childrens parties are the same.. they take time to develop and to build your personality into the "show"...

If you are looking to supply disco style music ... You can get small sound/pa systems from maplins for about £300.. then you need a mic to give you presence (probably headset) and some disco lights (there are other machines you can buy to enhance the show too) ... and a way of supplying/playing music.. this could be cd players and cd's.. or a laptop and dJ program with Mp3 files.. it all costs quite a bit of money to set up... and then you need to know your audience and the music they want to listen/dance/party to ( it may not be your choice of music) and thats just sound and music... then you need music for your games ( fun instrumental tracks)

With magic, I am not one but the Magicians on here will tell you it has taken them a long time to sort a show (and they all have a cupboard/room full of tricks they dont use just in case) and childrens magic can cost pennies to £100's a trick, but most have a variety of them in an act..

Likewise with party games you need a collection you may decide to do one and the children just walk away, you need to do some thing else.. Prizes, what are you going to give out? will you have all inclusive games or ones where they are out and sit and watch...

What sort of character are you going to be? do you need an outfit/costume.. will you need two for different age ranges?

And even with all that the biggest thing you need 'Confidence' to do it and take control... 2 hours x 30 x 5 year olds not listening to what you say is a scarey thought

Sorry, I dont mean to be harsh or put you down, but dont think you could set up the whole thing for less than £400... to be honest... thats just a laptop or ipad

Why not start by as said earlier by getting involved with local events or talk to local agencies and get mix & mingle work and use this time to build your character and use the fees you charge to put together your show requirements

Pam
xx
« Last Edit: January 01, 1970, 01:00:00 AM by Guest »

Areyouhappydad

  • FiveStars
  • *****
  • Posts: 1588
    • View Profile
Re: Thinking of setting up part time
« Reply #4 on: April 27, 2013, 12:40:16 PM »
Thanks for all the comments. Really useful and food for thought.
« Last Edit: January 01, 1970, 01:00:00 AM by Guest »
Kindest Regards
Stuart

We all have our cross to bear, but some of us need more wood than others!