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What to Do When Your Favorite Party Goods Aren’t in Stock

rainbow balloon arch

You had your heart set on the perfect supplies for your carefully orchestrated party plan. Yet when you get to your favorite party store, some of the items you really wanted weren’t in stock. What gives?

More importantly, what are you going to do now?

Don’t worry! We’ve got solutions for all your party planning challenges, and items being out of stock is a party challenge just like any other.

Where are we seeing shortages?

Latex, helium, and certain balloon colors have been hard to get ahold of lately. We’ve also struggled to keep posterboards, signs, and banners in stock. We’ve also had trouble keeping pinatas in stock.

Banners have been really hard to find too. That’s because demand was quite great when everyone was doing everything outside, and suppliers struggled to keep up.

The Reasons

Some of our customers really want to know why we’d ever experience a shortage, so we thought we’d devote a little time to explaining. There are quite a few things that could be going on behind the scenes.

First, there are times when the item is being made at a higher cost and so we have to sell it at a higher cost and don’t order as much.

Another reason is that some of our goods are shipped from China, and right now shipping and trucking costs have gone through the roof. That means we are bringing in fewer shipments. The items will be here, but you may have to wait!

Sometimes there are shortages because the supplies are needed in other industries. For example, latex is used to make medical gloves.

Sometimes the problem is that we’ve lost our manufacturer. Some of them went out of business during the Covid-19 pandemic. The ones we were working with aren’t making those goods anymore. Some companies have also let their representatives go or the company has moved to another state, which can slow down the process of reordering.

Unfortunately, going to another shop won’t always even help when these problems rear their heads. If your favorite store is dealing with these issues then chances are your second choice will be dealing with them, too.

Fortunately, there are workarounds. Read on!

The Solutions

birthday spelled in balloonsIf you’re having trouble finding latex balloons, don’t worry. There are lots of other balloon types to choose from!

Can’t find helium? All sorts of stores are having trouble getting it, which is why there’s been a huge surge in organics. Create columns, pillars, arches, and strands of multi-colored, multi-sized balloons. They are light, portable, and can replace other things that are getting hard to find, like banners.

Can’t find the balloon colors you want? Did you know we can make balloon colors? It’s just a matter of slipping one balloon inside the other.

birthday girl with non helium balloons

For example, purple and green are the hardest balloons to find right now. So we just take a blue one and put it inside the red one. We blow them both up and voila! Purple.

As for a lack of posterboard, signs, or banners, we have a couple of solutions. One is to use rolls of paper in solid color to create the banners yourselves. Another is to use mylar balloons with the messages pre-written on them. Another way would be to find the individual letters, which we often have as big individual items, and then linking them together with brads.

Can’t find piñatas? It’s easy enough to make your own. By the way, piñatas can hold a lot more than candy. You can stuff them with all sorts of favors. They can be an adult-friendly party game, too!

homemade-heart-shaped-balloon-pinataWhen all else fails, you can become a maker! Create things instead of buying them. Use the raw resources you have at your disposal. Get creative! You’d be surprised what you can upcycle into incredible party decorations.

Looking Ahead

Nobody can predict how supply shortages will continue to play out as America recovers from the Covid-19 pandemic. Yet Americans are ingenious. We’ll come up with other avenues.

As a consumer, it’s important to hold on to your patience and your sense of humor. Unfortunately, these shortages aren’t anybody’s “fault.” They’re just conditions we’re all facing as we all try to get back to normal.

Here at Paper Plus we are devoted to helping you solve all your toughest party challenges. Can’t figure out what to do? Come on out and see us!

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