Entertaining is definitely an art. It requires poise, planning, and (most importantly) patience. But even the most seasoned host has faltered once or twice — and during the holidays it can be harder than ever to hold it all together. Keep your calm and maintain your Top Host title by avoiding these common holiday hosting mistakes.
- Empty Bar Cabinets
How awful, having to have to run to the store in the middle of your party for more wine or mixers. Make sure your holiday party doesn’t go dry by fully stocking your bar cabinets in advance. Aim to have all of the essentials, plus a few back ups. Since liquor, wine, beer, and most mixers are good for months or more, it’s always better to be over prepared and have leftovers than to run out of something.
- Crowded Tables
No matter how close your friends and family are, no one wants to sit on top of someone at dinner. Banging elbows with your neighbor? Constantly excusing your reach? A crowded table can kill a dinner party fast. Don’t over seat your dining room table and keep serving plates off of the table. If you have an open concept kitchen, utilize your extra countertop space or kitchen island as a serving station. If not, put a buffet table or portable cart near the dining room and let guests serve themselves.
- Warm Drinks and Cold Food
Have plenty of ice on hand to keep your guests’ drinks nice and cold. Ice makers are famous for failing at parties due to overuse, so keep an extra bag of ice in your freezer just in case. And while drinks are meant to be cold, food definitely isn’t. Time out your meal accordingly, so dishes aren’t left sitting out for too long. As soon as something is ready, place it on a warming tray or buffet server, so that it keeps its temperature as long as possible.
- Awkward Silence
The mood at your party is as important as the food. Prevent things from get stale or awkward by putting together an amazing playlist. Go with a traditional holiday theme or let guests submit their requests as part of their RSVP. With great songs playing all night long, your party will be anything but dull.
- Testing New Recipes
Experimenting in the kitchen is an excellent way to discover new dishes you and your family may love. But volunteering your guests as taste testers for a new recipe is not the best idea. It could turn out delicious — but it could also be the ultimate disaster. Stick to your signature dishes when hosting a party and save the new recipes for another day.
- Unfamiliar Faces
They say, the more the merrier, but there’s more to the story. If you have many different friend circles and want to bring everyone together for the holidays, a party can be a great way to introduce your favorite people. However, leaving a bunch of strangers in a room together doesn’t always work out as planned. Make sure you introduce all of your guests to one and another and help them find commonalities. Maybe they have kids the same age or both work in the same industry. Helping your friends become friends will likely require a little effort, but it comes with the territory as host.
Now that you know the six holiday hosting mistakes (and how to avoid them), that Top Host title is yours for the taking. Happy Holidays!
Welcome to Willow Lane Cabinetry — the #1 place to buy affordable, semi-custom cabinets online! Let us help you create the kitchen, home office, home bar, laundry room, TV room, or bath of your dreams with our 100% free room design tool. We offer solid wood cabinetry, fully assembled and delivered for free. Plus all the accessories you need to complete your remodel. Visit our website to see our products today!