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Follow These 8 Steps to Host Your Best Party Yet

Step #1 Set the Guest List Early. Send out invites at least three to four weeks in advance. Give longer notice for more formal affairs and more popular dates like New Year’s Eve.

Step #2 Don’t Leave the Details to the Last Minute. Create your “to do” list at least a week in advance including the menu, drinks and quantities, decorations, and party events.

Step #3 Tidy Up. The day of the party, get the public areas of the house tidied up and don’t forget that the bathroom will need to be well stocked with fresh hand towels and the like. If you’re using a bedroom as coat closet, make sure it’s presentable. Keep the lights off and doors closed to the rest of the house to signal to your guests they are off limits.

 Step #4 Set the Ambiance. Turn off the overhead lightsLet lamps, sconces, candles and sparkling conversation illuminate the party.

 

Step #5 Sort Cocktails and Drinks: As long as you have drinks ready as guests arrive  the party will start well. Give options but not too many choices. Serve one cocktail. Bourbon and cider are nice at this time of year, plus champagne and wine.

Pro Tip: To keep bartending simple, you can pick a drink of the night, set the fixings out on the bar along with the recipe/directions, and let the guests play bartender.

Step #6 Set Up a Simple Spread. “Appetizer parties are definitely the easiest. A great cheese plate goes a long way. A party staple and one of the most chicest, easiest appetizers to asemble. Just grab a few cheese options, some italian meats, some olives and voila instant hit.

Pro Tip: Let guests help themselves. A dinner party is more fun to throw and attend when it’s buffet style. People can cater to their own tastes and eat on their own time. Plus you can mingle and mix it up. Just be sure to label the foods — people like to know what they’re eating.

Step #7 Give Guests an Assignment. One sure-fire way to get people mingling is to give them assignments, like having one person check on everybody’s drink or having someone hand-pass hors d’oeuvres. People may be shy and your task will give them an excuse to talk to strangers.

 

Step #8 Care less. Entertain more. Enjoy the moment, you only get now once!

Happy Hosting,

Cocoa

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