We just love to entertain at this time of year and catch up with friends and family! It’s much more fun for host and your guests if you’re relaxed and can entertain without the angst. To take some of the pressure off, we’ve popped together some of our best tips to make any gathering easier - whether casual drinks, a lunch or dinner party, or afternoon cocktails. More time to spend with your guests and having fun during the festive season – making it beautiful but fun!
KISS principle - it’s easy to get in a whirl and overcomplicate sometimes (we all do it!). So come back to the principal of Keeping It Simple.
Keep the food simple - Stick to easy meals for entertaining so you have less time in the kitchen and more time with your guests. Lay out small but beautiful cheese or charcuterie serving boards before guests arrive or have them in the kitchen so everyone can mingle and nibble with you or even help with final meal touches.
Use lovely platters and serving dishes and ones that are slightly larger so that your food looks wonderful. You can mix and match these to your settings.
Keep your table settings as simple as possible but with lovely impact.
Set the scene, especially at your entrance - light scented candles (or just one) at the entry and a small bunch of flowers or greenery here. It helps set the scene as people come in. Use candles on mantles and on the table to set the scene and create a lovely atmosphere. You just need a few to accomplish this.
Don’t forget the little things - do as many of them the day before if possible.
Give the bathroom and powder room a quick clean, pop a bunch of flowers and some new hand towels out (it’s so easy to forget to do the bathroom).
Pop the glasses through the dishwasher the day before so they are all sparkly.
Use candles and LED string lights to make buffets and the table look festive and fun.
Make yourself a list for the day before and for the day - it really does help to tick it off.
Set the table and get all the glasses, dishes & serving platters out first before you start cooking - it really helps if the atmosphere and decorating is done in heaps of time as it makes everything else go smoothly and stops that panic as time for people to arrive comes around.
Music is key! - have some great music ready to go - it can set the tempo for a fun gathering or help relax and be a casual background. Make a playlist ahead of time that will go on repeat for the whole time. If you aren’t tech savvy maybe have someone help with this one. There are also playlists on streaming platforms that are already setup - check these out beforehand and choose one that suits, then just press the button and go.
Remember the idea is to relax, enjoy yourself and have fun with your friends and family. Getting things done early and taking out as much fluster as possible means you will have a few minutes to take a breath and have a little time to yourself before everyone comes. TIme to get this party started!