Whether you want to plan a party for the holidays, a birthday or just a get together to catch up with friends, it’s important to know the basic steps to party planning for you to stay organized and at least have an idea of where to begin your planning. Here is the guideline to hosting a successful dinner party:
1. Invitations are on the top of the list when it comes to party planning. Not everyone uses invitations with today’s technology, but they’re a great way to set a more formal tone for your dinner party if that’s what you want or simply just to make sure everyone gets the invite and for R.S.V.P purposes. Make sure your guests get their invitations no more than a week before the party so that you can plan accordingly.
2. Table setting can increase the attractiveness of your home as well as the meal itself. Low flowers are great for centerpieces to add a little something extra to the table. Candles, cocktail napkins and striped straws are also good little touches that will make a big difference. Set your table early so that it’s out of the way and if you realize your table isn’t big enough, get a folded table and cover it with a nice table cloth for the night; no one will even notice the difference.
3. Assigned seating isn’t for everyone, but it could help the process of sitting down once the food is ready quicker. It can also help the flow of conversation run smoother if people that have similar interests, or people that already know each other, sit together. Make place cards to go with the setting.
4. Music is an easy way to create a better atmosphere for your party. It prevents awkward silences and is nice background noise, kept at a low level. Create your own mix of music or throw on a radio station, depending on the occasion.
5. Hors d’oeuvres will give something for your guests to nibble on while they wait for the actual meal. A cheese plate, vegetables and bread are all great to place sporadically around the living and dining area to keep people from gathering in one spot.
6. For dinner, make sure you have asked your guests ahead of time if they have any allergies to make sure you don’t run into any problems at the party itself. Also, make the food you are comfortable with. This will make the process quicker and not to mention smoother if you’re making dishes you’ve already made before.
7. When it comes to drinks, wine and one signature cocktail is a good way to keep it simple, along with some choices of soda. If you have a favorite drink or if anyone offers to bring anything, add it to the list and place them in a separate area with glasses and ice as a small drink station for the party.
These are all helpful dinner party tips that a lot of hosts may overlook when planning a party. Keeping them in mind will keep you on track and organized so that your party is enjoyable for all of your guests, and yourself as well.