Top tips for hosting the perfect Christmas party
It's that time of year again! It seems like summer is a distant memory and now that Halloween and Bonfire Night is out the way, our thoughts as professional caterers are turning to all things Festive. Obviously, the best way to have a stress free Christmas party is to get the professionals in to take the strain and allow you to shine as the host with the most, but, with Christmas looming, expanding waistlines and tightening finances, we have complied a list of our top tips for hosting a DIY party for friends and relatives.
1. Get your invites out early. Make sure you pick a date not too close to Christmas as diaries get full and there are always lots of last minute preparations to do. My friends Mark and Shian have a cocktail party every year and they send the invitations out at the end of September to make sure everyone has plenty of time to get themselves organised.
2. Plan your menu and keep things simple. The food is important but not so important that you don’t have time to see your guests. Make sure you can do most of the prep in advance and don’t do lots of things that need heated up.
3. Pressgang the kids (or someone else’s kids) to help serve the food and generally help out. Getting a little experience of work and being in social situations with adults is good for them and there is the added possibility of some entertainment value. You can provide some financial incentive to keep them sweet although they will probably eat their own bodyweight in cocktail sausages!
4. Christmas cocktails are a good way to kick off a party, just make sure it’s a premix so you’re not shaking them to order, (or get a professional in to make them for you). Prosecco is always a crowd pleaser too and doesn’t break the bank. Don’t forget to get ice and fruit if you’re serving spirits.
5. Do your playlist. Don’t give slightly squiffy guests the opportunity to hijack your Bluetooth speaker by not having a decent playlist organised. There are loads of cool Christmas tracks from Motown, swing and jazz artists which set the Christmas scene without sounding too generic.
6. Decorations are a must. You can’t have a Christmas party without having your decorations up. A wreath on the door is a good start, wrap up some empty boxes to put under your tree, get the smelly candles out to create that Christmas smell and get your Christmas jumper on to make sure your guests get the message.
7. Make sure you have an area cleared for coats or hire a coat rail and hangers from your local caterhire company.
8. This is the most important tip of the lot. Enjoy yourself! Hosting a party shouldn’t be stressful. You should be able to enjoy yourself as much as your guests. You can always pressgang those kids again to help with the clean up in the morning.
9. A nice way to round off the night is to give everyone a wee goody bag at the end of the night. This doesn’t have to be expensive but it will make your guests feel special. A mini bottle of prosecco or some home made truffles are a lovely thing to take home at the end of the night.
If it's all too stressful to think about, we would be delighted to help. Call our Events Team on 0131 225 3711, or drop us an email, to help plan your perfect party.