Whether you are planning a simple get together with your friends, or hosting a neighborhood bash, these simple tips will ensure that your soiree will not be soon forgotten. And with the warmer weather just around the corner, what better reason to throw a party? With just a few key pointers, you can transform your next gathering from traditional to extraordinary-with ease.
1. Select a theme. First you need to decide what kind of event you will be hosting. A backyard BBQ will require different elements from that of a formal sit-down dinner. Consider your audience, and take into account the space you are working with. A seven-course meal for 20 may not be possible in your small one-bedroom apartment, so you may want to opt for a cocktail style party with finger food that is easy to eat while standing. Once you have decided on a theme, you can focus on how you will execute your event.
2. Invite your guests. In order to let your guests know that this event is different from a traditional game night with takeout, skip the text message invite and go for a more detailed and creative option. Hosting a New England style clam bake? Include a lobster bib in the envelope or seashells on the invitation. This is your opportunity to let your guests know what to expect for the evening, and allow them to plan accordingly. And sending them something tangible will help build excitement for the event that cannot be garnered from an e-vite.
3. Plan your menu. It goes without saying that your menu should tie in to your theme. Take into account the seasonal selections that are available fresh at your local market. Blueberry pie maybe your favorite dessert, but finding them in January could be a challenge, and put a big dent in your wallet. Start planning your menu as early as possible, especially if you want to try out some of your new recipes beforehand. Choose some items that can be prepared ahead of time,that way you don’t get stuck in the kitchen all night leaving your guests wondering where you are.
4. Signature Cocktail. In order to avoid stocking your bar for your party, choose a signature cocktail that takes the pressure off having to mix drinks all night. Hosting a mid-summer bash or tapas style party? Make your own Sangria. This drink can easily be made ahead of time and stored in a cool place until ready to serve. Using frozen fruit as a substitute for ice cubes will keep it cold and prevent it from getting watered down.
5. Dress up the details. Skip the traditional adornments, and let your creativity shine. Sure, wine glasses with charms serve their purpose, but consider instead using mason jars with different colored fabric ribbon. Use table décor that is both functional and pretty, such as small vases at each place setting to hold the utensils. Move your table to a different location, such as your balcony or garden. The natural setting will provide a beautiful backdrop to your party.