Holiday Greetings! I’m so excited that Erika asked me back to do another guest post here on the BluLabel Bungalow blog. The last time I was here I shared 10 Steps to Stylish Christmas Décor and today I’m back with another holiday post sharing tips for entertaining during the season!
Let’s get this party started…
Entertaining during the holidays can happen in a lot of different ways. Sit down dinners are traditional for Thanksgiving and Christmas while buffet dinners, cocktail parties and dessert soirees are ideal for holiday gatherings where less formal parties are in order. Whatever type of holiday party you’re hosting this year, here are some tips that will ensure your party is both fabulous and festive..
Sit-Down Dinner Parties:
The first rule of entertaining at the dinner table is to create a tablescape that is dynamic and beautiful!
- Create a centerpiece that incorporates lots of shine, texture and color so that it becomes the focal point of the table. Keep the overall arrangement low so that conversation can easily happen across the table and where possible add candlelight to enhance the ambiance.
- When decorating with candles, always use unscented candles so the scent doesn’t affect the smell and taste of the food being served.
- Fresh greenery is a great way to fill containers and add texture at the base of candleholders, trays or within flower arrangements.
- Layer the table linens and individual place settings to add dimension to the table and make it come to life.
- Little touches like a ribbon tied around the silverware or a special place card will make your table and your guest feel special.
Buffet dinners are inherently more casual than a sit-down dinner but that doesn’t mean they can’t be as beautiful or special.
- Create a focal point on your buffet table with either a centerpiece or by creating a decorative backdrop behind the table.
- Create visual interest on the table by elevating some dishes and leaving some on the table surface. Placing food at different heights will let each dish stand out, make it easier to access all the serving plates and make for a more beautiful tablescape.
- Use a menu board to display all of the dishes being served and to give your buffet a personalized touch. To DIY your own chalkboard, buy an inexpensive piece of artwork from the thrift store and paint directly over the glass with chalkboard paint.
- Give functional items like silverware and plates a decorative feel but using wood boxes or vintage containers to hold them.
And when it comes to setting up your buffet table, use this handy guide to ensure a smooth flow from start to finish:
The décor and set-up for a Christmas or New Year’s Eve cocktail party can be more casual than any other holiday party you host, but there are a few key tips to ensure even your small party has style.
- Bar carts are a hot trend these days and if you have one it’s the perfect place to set-up a full service bar. Use one shelf for pre-mixed drinks and wine and use a second shelf for hard liquor and mixes. And don’t forget to incorporate pretty accessories likes drinking straws, cocktail napkins and an ice bucket.
- If there will be more than 20 people at your party, try setting up two bar areas so you don’t spend the evening managing the flow around the bar.
- If you don’t own a bar cart, clear off a console table or bookcase and turn it into cocktail station.
- Add a little flair to the party appetizers you serve. Herbs placed on serving platters can give simple food a festive feel and use unexpected food items like waffle cones to serve up nuts and individual finger foods.
All parties need to end on a sweet note and the perfect way to do that is by creating a dessert buffet for your guest to enjoy.
- Set up a separate table to hold dessert items and just like your food buffet, position desserts at different levels to create visual interest on the table.
- Use decorative glass jars, cake plates and bowls to hold your treats and add a decorative element to the table.
- Create a dessert buffet centered on a food theme like chocolate and then decorate the table with colors that play up that theme.
- Add a ‘take-away’ element to your dessert station by having take-out boxes available so guest can take a sweet treat home.
It’s the simple things that make a party special so use your creativity with putting the finishing touches on your holiday parties and have fun celebrating with family and friends.
For more holiday décor, entertaining and gifting tips join me over at ConfettiStyle for my 30 Days of Holiday series!
Thanks Erika for having me back and Happy Holidays to everyone!