As we ease into the festive period, we begin welcoming friends and family into our homes to celebrate. Between Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, Boxing Day and New Year, there is plenty of opportunities to be a party host.
To help you throw the perfect Christmas gathering this year, Rebecca Snowden, Interior Style Advisor at Furniture And Choice reveals her top party planning tips.
Choose a theme
The best parties have a theme, and while Christmas is still the focus for any festive parties, choosing a concept such as a colour scheme will help make party decorations cohesive. Although red and green may be the obvious choice, more ethereal schemes such as metallics and sparkle will wow guests with the unexpected.
Rebecca explains: “To maintain a glamorous appeal, choose glass or crystal candle holders, centrepieces and trinkets. Swap tinsel for pearl beads to make the room appear instantly more expensive, and you certainly can’t go wrong with adding some glitter.”
Set the mood
Once the decorations have been carefully selected, creating the right atmosphere is next on the list. Candles and fairy lights are the go-to for setting the mood and battery-operated candles are perfect for ensuring safety around children without sacrificing style. If you are fortunate enough to have a fireplace, make use of it to make the room warm and toasty.
Rebecca adds: “Don’t skip on mastering your music selection, Christmas songs or a ‘chill’ playlist are perfect when hosting an event of this nature. Keep it playing quietly in the background so you can still easily enjoy conversations with friends.”
Stock up on drinks
Impress your guests with an expansive drink selection. Alongside beer, wine and bubbly, plan a small cocktail menu that your guests can have a go at making for themselves. Or if you have a mixologist amongst your family, they could treat guests to carefully crafted drinks. Espresso Martini, Old-Fashioned and Sloe Gin Fizz are cocktails fit for a winter-themed party.
Rebecca adds: “Don’t forget to cater to children and designated drivers with a variety non-alcoholic choice. Fizzy pop, hot chocolate and mocktails would make for a good selection.”
Don’t forget food
If you intend to feed your guests, there are two routes you can go down, depending on the number of people you’re preparing for. For intimate gatherings, small dinner parties work perfectly, whether that’s one, two, three or even more courses. Roast meat and slow-cooker meals can be prepared early in the day and left cooking until it’s time to feed guests.
Rebecca says: “For larger guest lists try out a buffet-style food menu. Pigs in blankets, sliders, pork pies and other finger foods work perfectly for feeding the masses and can be prepared without over-complication. This style of food will be most appealing to children.”
Keep guests entertained
No party is complete without entertainment, so planning games in advance will take stress out of the day itself.
Rebecca explains: “Whether you want to keep it simple and play board games or get creative and invent your own Christmas themed party games, activities are perfect for gathering all your family and friends in one space to cherish and make the most of the festive period.”
Rebecca adds: “With winter just around the corner, people are already looking forward to the festive period, a time to cherish friends and family while spending quality time together.
“Party planning doesn’t have to be stressful if you prepare in advance. Create lists of everything you need and want while making sure you set a budget to stop yourself from going overboard. You can create a the perfect Christmas party with just a few simple steps and good company.”
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