Party Planning

Party Planning

Tips for making your next party a smashing success

Every hostess has thrown a party that has been more stress than fun. Likewise, we have all been to parties that seem so well orchestrated, we have to wonder how the hostess pulled it all off - we come over for a party, have a great time, fabulous food, and never fail to notice that the hostess herself is having a great time too! So, how do those hostesses make it look effortless and stress free?

Let's start with the guest list. An interesting party always starts with interesting guests. Assemble your list of guests from different social circles so that everyone has a chance to meet somebody new, and still mingle with people they already know well.

Send out your invitations approximately two weeks in advance, and be sure to request responses four to five days prior to your event. You may want to allow for more notice during the holiday season. Make sure your invitations set the tone for the party so that guests know what to expect from your event, and how to prepare for it.

The type of event you're hosting will likely determine whether or not you choose to have a "theme." It's often suitable to incorporate the guest of honor's favorite pastime into a party theme, or simply to have a well-coordinated party with everyday tableware and decorations. A theme can be as easy or as intricate as you choose!

Music is an essential element of a well-planned party. Music choices should be made with your guests' preferences in mind, and the volume should never overpower the conversation.

When planning the menu, don't be afraid to be creative. If your guests are able to indulge in dishes that are decadent, your event will certainly be memorable. Look for recipes that don't require a lot of time to prepare, but are still unique enough to make a strong impression.

For great recipe ideas, visit websites that include full menus so you don't have to spend extra time trying to coordinate dishes. While you don't want to spend the entire party in the kitchen, it is not necessary to have everything prepared before guests arrive. People love to gather there and nibble on appetizers while dinner is being completed. In fact, it often makes for great conversation!

Regardless of the type of party you have, the most important thing is that you have fun with your guests. If you are relaxed, and just take the time to enjoy your guests rather stress about the details, your party is sure to be a hit!

By Yvette Quigley