Cocoa Millennial

Girl Time 101: How-to Plan a Fun Girls’ Night In on a Budget

· You Might Call it Girls' Night, I Call it Therapy ·

September 19, 2017 4 Comments

If you haven’t planned a Girls’ Night In, you’re missing out on something super special. Getting together with your girlfriends to “cut up and catch up” (as I like to call it) is one of my personal favorite pastimes. What’s especially interesting to see is that as your girlfriends enter their late twenties and early thirties, practically no one is interested in the club life whatsoever. At this point, it’s all about connecting in a more intimate way, and a girl’s night in is the perfect facilitator. If you’re ready to throw one for you and your girls, you will want to be strategic so that you’re keeping the costs low. Recently, I hosted my own “PJ’s and Wine” event at my house with several girlfriends, and we all had a blast! I was able to pull this off with tons of food, beverages and décor, and still managed to pay only about $100 for the entire event! You can do it, too, with proper preparation. Here’s how to plan your own fabulous girl’s night in on a budget:



Make your Event Exciting


If you’ve decided to throw a Girls’ Night In, getting the word out is the first step to throwing a successful event! And while it may seem intriguing to put together some type of fancy invitation, this is just a fun, casual evening, and you do not need to spend money on invites, whether print or electronic. Send out a free e-vite or a text message to include the details of the event. If you decide to send a text- send them individually. Most people do not want to be on a group text chain to discuss your event. In the details, make the event exciting! Your tone will set the excitement for your event, so make sure it is communicated that way. Chicks love themes, so have a theme for it. I asked for all of my girlfriends to wear their favorite pajamas. To my surprise, my girlfriends were super excited about coming over in their pj’s, and also loved that they didn’t have to worry about going out to buy something for the event.


Once you have crafted your perfect invite, it’s also important that you give your girlfriends advanced time to RSVP. Plan to have the event at least 2-3 weeks out, especially if you have friends that are mothers and would need to make arrangements for the evening. The sooner your guests know, the better.



Order Food that Goes a Long Way


When you think of a night in, one of the first monetary expenses will be figuring out a practical menu. And although surfing Pinterest can conjure up some exciting appetizers and arrangements, feeding your friends doesn’t have to get super pricey. Cheap food is not to be confused with low-quality crap, but simply food that can go a long way and keep your guests satisfied. If you want to keep the menu budget-friendly, think of foods that are affordable and can fill you up. For appetizers, you can put together your own veggie platter, especially if you’re willing to cut up the vegetables yourself and arrange, instead of picking up a platter at your grocery store. Meatballs and chips and dip are also some cheap appetizer options. For the main dish, consider cooking some type of spaghetti, or even making your own sandwich platter. If you’re on a time crunch, pizza is always a good option. I had a pizza and wine theme for my girl’s night, and with the help of an online coupon was able to order seven pizzas for under $45. I paired the pizza with salad, and there was more than enough food for everyone, and I had plenty of leftovers to give away at the end of the night.




Ask your Guests to Contribute


I know this subject can get controversial, so please allow me to be clear on this: you should not plan any event with the expectation that your friends will supplement some of the costs involved with throwing the event. However, hopefully, most of your girlfriends will be so excited for your event that they will ask you what they can bring to contribute. Asking your friends to bring something with them to your Girls’ Night In is a great way to keep the party going. Don’t ask for major things, but minor things that could be beneficial. For my event, I asked all of the girls to bring a wine of their choice, or a game if they would like. The awesome outcome of that is every girlfriend brought a wine, and it was a great way for us to explore tasting new wines and conversing over our favorites that were there!


There are a ton of other good options for guests, including tasking them to bring old accessories or outfits for a clothing swap. Think about the interests of your friends, and go with something that will add incentive for them to want to be there! For my next girl’s night, I would like to also work on vision boards for the New Year, and plan to ask all of the ladies to bring their own pictures or magazines that they would like to use. There are so many ways to build engagement with your guests, so tap into your creativity!



Use your Local Dollar Store for Décor Options


While it’s a total option to glam up your event, this can also be done on a thrifty budget and give your evening the special pop it needs. Since I love pink, I decided to incorporate a few pink hues in my main living area. I went to my local Dollar Tree and was able to grab a few pink candles, disposable table clothes, paper plates/utensils, and serving plates. I topped this off with some assorted candy and left dollar tree spending less than $15. I then went to my local grocery store, and scored a large bouquet of pink daisies that were $5. I prepared the flowers and put them in a vase I already had, and paired them with the candles, and had a beautiful focal point for the event. Your dollar can truly stretch when you use your creativity and work with the resources around you!




In the end, a Girls’ Night In is all about creating fun memories during your time together. Friendships are important, so events like this are an excellent way to build camaraderie and engage in a more intimate setting. Hosting an event in your home doesn’t always have to break the bank, so try some of these tips the next time you get together with your girls, and enjoy your special time together! When was your last Girl’s Night In, and what are your favorite themes? Comment below, let’s chat!


With Love, Melanie


  1. Reply

    Ilka Elise

    September 29, 2017

    Sounds LOVELY <3 I'm in need a good girls night. Thank's for sharing your tips xx

    • Reply


      September 30, 2017


      Thank you so much for reading. Girls Night is always a must! If you have one, please let me know how it goes. Xo!

  2. Reply

    Bradley Thompson

    September 29, 2017

    Great post, I am going to steal these tips for a guys night, especially the food tip! I will pass this along to my girlfriend, she will love this post!

    • Reply


      September 30, 2017


      Thanks so much for reading. Yes, these tips work well for a Guys Night in, especially with food haha. Please feel free to share with her, thanks again!