Your party is always a reflection of you – your preferences, tastes and lifestyle. It is also a reflection of your guests, their preferences, special needs, and how important they are to you – their host.
Hosting a quality event is about being thoughtful. It will not be measured by how much money and time you spend, the famous brand names you use, or by mimicking the “Joneses” up the block — but by how welcomed, comfortable and special each guest is made to feel.
Dawn Bryan, lifestyle expert, best-selling author, and founder of Qualipedia™ – the definitive source for making choices daily that count, offers the following tips:
Be prepared! You need to feel relaxed and welcoming; be a guest at your own party
Plan a party you would enjoy attending; express your own individuality/creativity
Do not underestimate the time and resources required or overestimate your capabilities
Use your freezer to prepare dishes ahead of time; write things down and make lists
Set out all serving platters, dishes, utensils the day before; have enough ice, food, and drink
Plan to be ready 30 minutes before the invited time; greet guests as they arrive
Have an alternate plan in case of bad weather; have sunscreen available if it’s a day party
If grilling, make sure you have grill, charcoal or fuel, and all tools clean and ready
Keep the house cool for guests to escape the heat
If it is a pool party, add fun water toys and floats
Give guests comfortable places to relax, meet, and mingle by arranging seating into small groups.
Always prepare extra portions!
To avoid the growth of bacteria keep hot foods hot and cold foods cold
To avoid traffic jams, set bar/drink table away from the buffet table
If children are invited, plan to have some foods/drinks they will especially enjoy
Place containers around for disposing of olive pits, toothpicks, shells, etc
If you expect leftovers, have take-away containers ready for your guests
Music sets the mood and paces the flow of the party
Do you want live music, dancing, or just soft background music? Use your imagination!
Consider celebrity look-alikes, stilt walkers, ventriloquists, caricaturists, face painters, mimes, fire eaters, dancers, jugglers, balloon makers, or fortune tellers
Select a special date and make it your own: could be a Flag Day (June 14) party or “every June 18” party; commemorate an anniversary or special event
Create a signature theme: a recipe, a season, a color, secret desire costumes or masks, jazz, salsa dancing, ping-pong tournament – all give imaginative impetus to your party, beginning with the invitation
Send guests home with a gift bag or small memento related to your theme
If party is on a Friday or Saturday evening, send guests home with fresh bagels, croissant, or danish for their breakfast – perhaps along with the next morning’s newspaper
Qualipedia ™ is the definitive source for making choices daily that count. Qualipedia™ educates consumers on their choices, helping them achieve independence from product hype, providing transparency about everyday items and gives people the information they can use to determine quality for themselves, enhancing their lifestyles in a way that works for them.
About Dawn Bryan
Dawn is the founder of Qualipedia ™ and best-selling author of “The Art and Etiquette of Gift Giving.” Dawn’s impressive career includes being selected as a consultant and advisor for many global brands including Gucci, American Express, Business Week Magazine, Citicorps/Diners Club, Swarovski Crystal, and others. Most recently, she advised Bad Boy Worldwide Entertainment on etiquette and protocol. She has authored many columns and books on etiquette, gift-giving and the quality of things for Business Week, Town & Country, Modern Bride, Vogue and Glamour among others. Dawn has taught international protocol to globalizing businesses and industries, as well as to Chinese journalists and diplomats in Beijing and Shanghai.
*Image provided by MYDrap.*