Good hostesses stand out from the crowd. They have a knack for planning great get-togethers that guests remember for weeks, months and even years afterwards. While it is true that becoming a good hostess is largely a learned skill, there are a few tried and true tips that can help even novice hostesses throw a party to remember.
Time Your Invitations Right
Many people schedules fill up quickly, particularly during holidays. That’s why it’s important to time your invitations so that your event gets scheduled before others, but not so early that your guests end up forgetting about it.
If you are planning an event around a holiday, or during the holiday season between Thanksgiving and New Year’s, send out invitations at least six weeks in advance. If the event is on the holiday itself, such as New Year’s Eve, eight weeks notice is not inappropriate. If you are planning a party any other time of year, three to four weeks notice should be sufficient.
Keep Food Simple
One rookie hostess mistake is planning an overly ambitious menu. Unless you are culinary professional, you likely don’t have experience preparing food for large groups. Cooking for a party and making sure that all the food is ready to serve at the appointed hour is incredibly stressful.
The truth is is that your guests appreciate that somebody else is feeding them. If you are not hiring a caterer, keep things simple by preparing one or two dishes from scratch at home and buying the other items ready-made.
Offer a Unique Activity
While there’s nothing wrong with a party where folks eat and chat, offering some kind of activity can be a great way to encourage socializing. Party games are one option, another is to bring in an expert to offer a short class. You may be surprised to know that there are all kinds of professionals that offer this service, including chefs that teach in-home cooking classes, wine experts that educate people on wine and perfumers who teach perfume making classes. . .all in people’s homes.
The important thing to remember when throwing a party is that you are offering hospitality, and this is always appreciated. Sure, you and your friends could go out to a restaurant for the evening, but when you bring people into your home you are sharing your life with them, making memories that won’t soon be forgotten.