As I get older, the sense of urgency to throw all of the parties, with all of the perfect details and have the how decorated like santa's workshop... is less and less. Sometimes I just want to throw out some wine, snacks, have friends over and have a good time. I've partnered with Seven Daughters Wine to narrow down all of those pinterest boards you've been building and give you seven of my tips for hosting a festive (but easy) white elephant party. A few pretty details can make your party just as memorable as if you planned and crafted for 6 months. Here is what I recommend if you are planning on hosting this season.
1. Greet your guests with a small welcome table
I like to have a signature cocktail, arrangement and a sign. Having cocktail or wine ready to go eliminates you having to ask every single person if they need a drink when the arrive... leaving more time for the important things like drinking your own cocktail and mingling;)
2. Step away from the red and green
Any color palette can be festive and you don't have to invest a million bucks on new decor that only gets to hang out for a few weeks every year. Adding words or phrases like this joy sign can add a holiday touch without being overly chirstmas-ey.
3. Send your guests off with something to remember the night by
Ornaments with a fresh sprig of fresh greenery or an herb make fun favors for your guests to take home. Add some homemade tags with their names or a holiday quote! DIY for these tags coming soon!
4. Letter each glass for guests to keep track
I added the reindeer names to our glasses as a fun touch. Hopefully your guests could keep track this way.. if not add their own names! Use a water based acrylic marker so that it's durable enough during the party, but washes right off with a little scrub at the end of the night.
5. Help keep the gifts a secret with covered baskets
The worst is when you see who brings what gift at a white elephant (because you know there is the one friend who's gift you always fight over, and that one gift everyone is trying to get rid of). Eliminate that by adding closed baskets at your welcome table. Have guests drop them in the baskets so they are a complete surprise when it comes time to swap.
6. Keep the wine flowing!
It's always awkward when you're a guest looking for a refill but it is nowhere to be found... you don't want to be the one asking the host for another bottle. So don't let your guests find themselves in that situation. Keep a selection of reds at the bar and chilled whites in an ice bucket like we did here with our Seven Daughter's selections.
7. Feed your guests cravings
After a long night of mingling, cocktail-ing and gift swapping, guests are going to get the munchies. Like I said, keep it simple and serve easy finger foods that can stay out all night and guests can grab as they go. Just be sure to serve a mix of sweet and savory!