This past year on the blog I had a monthly “Tips to be a Great Party Host” series. Each month I interviewed somebody in my life or internet that I admire for being an excellent part host or hostess. Each month they answered questions about their party hosting style, why they love party planning, their go-to recipes & dishes, whether or not they decorate, the best party they ever hosted, their biggest party challenge, and my favorite question: what’s your best tip for someone who wants to be a great party host(ess)?
As we go into the New Year, if party hosting is something that you’ve thought about trying, but didn’t know where to start, here are the best tips from some of the best.
Tip from Chrystina at Chrystina Noel
Give everybody all the details ahead of time. Tell them the who, where, why, when, what, but also make sure to include logistical things that will make it easier for them. Should they eat before they get there? Should they bring anything? Can they bring a plus one? Is there a theme? Is there a dress code? Where should they park? Are there any tricks to finding your street? The more details you can give someone ahead of time the more comfortable they will feel when they walk in the door.
Tip from Chrystina’s Mom
Relax and enjoy the moment – that’s the reason you are entertaining in the first place.
Tip from Jessica at Sweet Love & Ginger
Just start. Don’t think too much. Just invite people over and keep it simple, or invite your closest friend and try something crazy. The only way to overcome the fear and figure out what works is to start doing it.
Tip from Beth at Recipes for Success
Do everything in your power to give yourself a chance to enjoy the party too. Yes, hosting a party is a lot of work but if you do some prepping in advance and plan your day right, you don’t have to spend the entire day in the kitchen while everyone else is having fun in the living room.
Tip from Brigette at Brigette I. Design
Don’t be afraid to go big with your ideas, but also try to keep it simple when possible – party planning should be fun!
Tip from Heidi at Parties for Pennies
Have fun with the decorations and food, but remember to keep the focus on your guests! The best hostess, in my book, is one where guests leave saying, “I felt so special and loved.”
Tip from Sarah at Pretty Providence
Collect white serving dishes, they go with everything! You can find great ones at thrift stores, keep your eyes peeled.
Tip from Andy at Plum Deluxe
People don’t care about how clean your house is. They care about being heard, connecting with like-minded people. So make time to listen. Have some thoughtful conversation starters. Connect people. Worry more about deep connection than dust bunnies.
Tip from Nida at Mommy 411
PLAN PLAN PLAN. From ribbons to centerpieces everything requires details. And in my opinion, details is what makes a party fabulous. Go the extra mile and do the effort; results will show on there own. Hosting a great party requires a lot of hard work, so make sure you work days/weeks ahead of time.
Tip from Lauren at Lauren Caselli Events
Understand that your guests’ comfort is important, and try to walk through your part from the perspective of the guest. When they walk in, is there a convenient place to hang their coat? If not, have someone taking coats and placing them in a bedroom (a great job for a partner!). Are the plates in a spot that makes sense? Is there enough glassware or plastic cups so people don’t have to hunt for glasses? Think about what people are going to need before they have to ask, so you can relax during the event (or if you’re me, run around and clean up after people).
Tip from Johanna
Cover the big things first then worry about the smaller things. Only you will know if something that you had planned didn’t come to fruition by party time. Don’t forget to have fun! It’s easy to get too wrapped up in the details.
And that’s it. 11 great tips for you to consider in your journey towards becoming the best host or hostess you can be.
I’m super excited to share next year’s hostess series with you all. A lot of times I feel like I’m writing to people who already love to host parties, but I want to make sure to include some of the tips and tricks for people who are looking to start hosting parties and don’t know where to begin. I have a list of a few questions to answer so far, but if you can think of any additional ones, please let me know in the comments below.