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How to Host a Great Party

Hosting a party at your home is often a stressful experience. But it doesn’t have to be! Follow Domestic CEO’s 4 easy tips to make sure both you and your guests have a fabulous time. 

By
Amanda Thomas,
July 3, 2013
Episode #024

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Tip #3: Prepare!

With all the anticipation you are building around your party, you want to make sure you are prepared to back up the hype with a great event. Start by deciding what food and drink you’re going to serve. From there, you can start making lists to make sure you have all the ingredients, serving dishes, serving spoons, plates, and utensils for the night. I like to have my food be as low-maintenance as possible so I can spend more time with my guests and less time in the kitchen. By pre-assembling and even pre-cooking items a day in advance, you can give yourself much more time with your guests. I don’t recommend slaving over that lobster bisque while your friends enjoy themselves in another room.

Make sure your home is prepared for company as well. No one wants to party in a dirty house, so make sure to clean at least the areas that your company will be hanging out in. Check out my episode called The Illusion of Clean for tips on how to get your home looking fabulous without much cleaning at all. You may want to splurge on some party decorations, but if you don’t, simply removing any knickknacks and clutter will help your space feel open and welcoming.

Make sure you are well stocked up on supplies, too. Have more toilet paper, cups, and ice than you think you need. Running out of any of those items won’t end your party, but it will require you to make a quick run to the corner store in the middle of the festivities. And who wants that? Prevent this calamity from happening by stocking up before hand.

Tip #4: Set the Mood

Setting the atmosphere for your event is so much more than just putting up a few decorations. It really has to do with how you welcome people into your home. If you are frazzle-haired and running around like a chicken with its head cut off, you are going to set a stressed tone for your party. Make sure you personally are ready 30 minutes before your guests are scheduled to arrive. That way, even if someone shows up 15 minutes early, they aren’t catching you in your underwear or with rollers in your hair.

See also: Fashionably Late

Once you are all done up, then it’s time to turn on some mood music (depending on your theme) and put the finishing touches on the food and drinks. I like to have a few appetizers out when the first guests arrive, but I also like to have something in the oven to tempt my guests with yummy smells as they step in the door. And if by chance you have early arrivers, or you are just running behind, asking them to help you with these finishing touches can help start conversation at that awkward time while you are waiting for others to arrive.

When you get to this point, the only thing left to do is dazzle your guests with your sparkling personality! Roam around, talk with each of your guests, and enjoy spending some quality time with everyone there. And remember, if you run out of something, a drink spills, or your garbage disposal backs up and floods your kitchen (all of which have happened during a party at our house), just keep calm and laugh about it. If you handle it with your usual panache, your friends will still think you are the hostess with the mostest.

If you’re looking for a few ideas on party themes, check out the boards on my Pinterest page. And if you have some great pictures of your own party set-ups, tweet them to me @TheDomesticCEO or post them on my Facebook wall.

Until next time, I’m the Domestic CEO, helping you love your home.

Man in Hawaiian Shirt, Woman Making List and Dinner Party images courtesy of Shutterstock

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