There is a lot that goes into throwing a great party whether it is an intimate home dinner or large holiday soiree. A good hostess will make it seem effortless, but much goes into the planning. When you're hosting, the tasks at hand can quickly begin to pile up. To help take a few things off your plate – and ensure your night begins with a bang, not a headache – we share our top five entertaining tips.
1. Organization is key.
This one sounds a little excessive – but you’ll thank us later, we promise! Start organising the event as early as a week in advance. Check you have enough plates, glasses, and do a general tidy up of your space. Set the table the day before, decide which serving trays and flatware you will use and pre-cook any dishes that can be prepared ahead of time. Setting the table the night before will not only save you time, it will create a beautiful tablescape that will only further add the ambience you’ve already created. Show off your gorgeous tableware!
2. Make sure the drinks are flowing.
When it comes to alcohol, opt for a full-bar of the classics – gin, vodka, champagne, wine – basics are key and most guests will prefer to stick to what they know and love. Creating a custom drink for your event is a great way to add your personal touch and a fun surprise for your guests. Having a bar station setup with ice, bar accessories, and glasses so guests can help themselves will give them something to do and frees you up to enjoy your party and spend less time pouring drinks!
3. Lighting is key.
The soft, flattering lighting of candles set the mood for a cozy, welcoming atmosphere. Whether it be taper or pillar candles, this tip’s an absolute must-do. Add candleholders of various heights for an added impact to your overall tablescape
4. Don’t underestimate the power of perfect sound.
Music is a must, but keep the sound low during dinner to avoid guests having to yell over the table. It doesn’t have to be a time-consuming task putting a playlist together. Finally, make sure you have a fun playlist at the ready in case your dinner party turns into a dance party following dessert!
5. Be present.
Having guests over in any capacity doesn’t mean you have to bring out all of the party etiquette rules or spend your entire evening serving drinks. You can always hire a server or bartender for a few hours or set up self serve stations so guests can help themselves. What we have learned over the past few years is coming together, whether in a small or large group, is more about spending time with those you love and make you happy. Your party guests want to spend time with you and will never know if something did not turn out exactly as you had planned. They’ll remember how inviting and fun the evening was and happy to have spent time with friends they love. If you’re ever stressed about entertaining, simply remember this and reference these tips to make getting guest-ready look like a breeze.