Plan thoroughly, including the smallest details. Make lists of everything and keep notes.
Music establishes the flavour of the party, providing a tempo during the party’s first half hour when guests are getting to know each other, and background music as the party progresses. Set the MP3 player on shuffle to mix up the music and the party.
Choose decorations to fit the celebration. Specific holidays or milestone celebrations, such as a birthday or anniversary, may need extra attention to detail, but casual parties may only require a vase of fresh flowers. Set a goal to be dressed and ready for guests an hour before they arrive. This will give you time to deal with any small issues that may crop up, or simply allow you to take a deep breath before the doorbell rings.
Leave small tasks, such as setting out glasses or putting out the finger food, for the end. These are easy to assign to the first guest, who is often happy to have something to do before other guests arrive.
If you forget something or don’t have time to do it, no one will know but you. Smile and enjoy the party.
Make a note of any dishes or settings that worked well for the party.
You don’t need stacks of tablecloths and silverware to throw a successful get-together. Check to see what you have on hand and see if it can be used for creative props. You can use these suggestions or get creative and design your own. For instance, use a:
Glass pitcher for a flower vase
Punch bowl to hold salad
Baby spoon as a serving spoon in cranberry or dessert sauce
Clean clay flower pot to hold raw vegetables and a smaller one inside to hold the dip - try our Spinach Feta Dip
Wooden salad bowl to hold buns
Clean bed sheet for a tablecloth
Wine carafe to serve orange juice
Candy dish as a candle holder