3 TIPS FOR HOSTING THIS HOLIDAY SEASON
We blinked and somehow it’s November! Before the hustle and bustle of the season officially gets rolling, let’s take a moment to pause, breathe and prepare for the holiday cheer to come.
While we all know the months left in 2023 will likely be jam-packed, they’re also some of our very favorites (despite the oncoming cold air and snowstorms)! It’s the season of hosting – and we can’t wait to dive into cozy dinners with friends and family, hors d’oeuvres around the tree and cocktails by the fireplace. Ahh, we can smell the cinnamon and pine candles already!
Since we love a good get-together, even during these oh-so-busy months of the year, we’d love to share some of our hosting secrets to make your next gathering as stress-free and magical as possible.
Step 1: Offer a Signature Drink or Snack
One of our favorite tricks for starting your party off on the right foot is to offer a signature drink or appetizer. This gives your guests something to do immediately on arrival (even if they don’t know anyone else at the gathering) and can be an easy conversation starter (isn’t this drink delicious?).
We love showing off a special drink in a punch bowl, glass pitcher or beverage dispenser, depending on how many guests you’re expecting.
For food, charcuterie boards are all the rage, and offer a lot of options without too much effort. Set your snacks on a wooden board or decorative tray, set out some cocktail plates and napkins, and your guests will have a perfect arrival at your party!
Step 2: Create a Strategic (and Seasonal!) Table Setting
If you’re hosting a sit-down meal, your table setting is a great place to spend some of your time and effort. Start with a centerpiece that matches the feel of your gathering – homey, cozy, fresh, etc. We love the look of fairy lights tucked into seasonal branches, pine cones or faux stems. Add a hurricane vase with berries, candles or florals.
Once your centerpieces are ready, consider each setting. Where will your guests be seated? Name cards are a great way to keep control of who to seat by each other, and avoid the awkwardness that can arise if guests aren’t sure where to sit.
Finally, one of our favorite “extras” for the table is to set out nut cups at each setting. Fill small cups or bowls with assorted nuts, candies or chocolates. It’s a sweet way to welcome each person to their seat, and shows you went above and beyond on special touches.
Step 3: Set the Mood
We love soft, gentle lighting in the wintertime. Think: candles twinkling (real or flameless) around the room, a string of fairy lights tucked into a jar or lantern, or strategically placed lamps with Edison bulbs. However you choose to adorn your room, lighting can make a huge impact.
As you plan your gathering, consider what needs light (for example, a buffet of food) and what can be kept dim for ambience. Sprinkle in decorative candles, lanterns or fairy lights and you’ll set the mood to festive and cozy!
We hope these tips help give you a starting point as you head into the season – and we wish you many nights of conversation, laughter and coziness over the next few months!