4 Tips for a Great Dinner Party! – RANG ART SHOP

4 Tips for a Great Dinner Party!

Weekend is the time when #Friendslikefamily becomes popular on my Facebook and Instagram feed. My timeline shows pictures of scrumptious looking food, impressive array of drinks, toasts being raised and friends having a gala time.

Career and lifestyle choices have drifted most of us away from our parents leaving us in little nests of our own. It is no wonder that friends gradually become an extension of our families. If settled overseas, they are the only family we have. Small celebrations and parties are just an excuse to get together and celebrate our adorable relationships with them. 

As much as I love inviting my friends over, the pressure of thinking dinner party ideas and hosting a good get-together always sends me in a tizzy. Think about it, there are countless things to be done – cleaning the house, googling dinner recipes, finalising drinks, setting the table, finding ideas to entertain guests. The list seems never-ending. 

While it is alright to worry about these, it is equally important to plan ahead and stay relaxed. Trust me, a smiling and welcoming host can make a huge difference in the success of your party. Put on your party planner hat and read on for my super tips that will turn you into a ninja party planner. I wonder how mom made it look so easy!

Plan your party at least two weeks in advance. Early planning will not only give you a breathing space to work out the details but will also give you enough time to organise everything.

I believe in making lists so that I don’t miss out on anything. Not only do I stay on track but listing things out also saves me from going wrong with my choices. Imagine serving only non-veg starters when you also have a vegetarian couple visiting. Fix the date and prepare your guest list to send out invitations. Doing it early will give you clarity about the number of guests to expect and accordingly arrange for special dietary choices.

Decide the menu after considering food restrictions and choices. Include a couple of items that are easy to fix. Think about food options that can be bought from stores like a chipotle dip with nachos or hummus with breadsticks. You can oven-roast dry fruits a day in advance to serve as accompaniments with drinks. They are not only great starter options but will also save some extra hours in the kitchen.

When it comes to hosting a party, try to do everything you can in advance. Shop for ingredients, drinks and decor items two days before the party. Think, write and arrange everything like candles, flowers, napkins and other knick-knacks. 

Get your self and your home party-ready a day in advance. Make sure the cleaning is done a day before the party. Decide what you and your family will be wearing. Dry-clean and iron it in time to save any last min fiasco.

You can start cooking in advance too. Prepare chutneys, pizza, and pasta sauces, desserts etc. a day before the party. You can also chop the veggies to save some time. I take out my crockery, cutlery, table mats and napkins a day before so that the table is set and one major task is ticked off my list.

Do not shy away from any help offered or asking for help. Take help wherever you can to ease your burden. If a friend offers to get something, do not decline. If someone insists on getting a dessert, accept it. Involve your family in preparations and arrangements. They can’t read your mind and all you have to do is to ask. Take your husband’s help in cleaning, preparing the playlist and setting up the table. Ask your kids to clean their rooms and select their party outfits so that you can approve and clean them in time.

There are umpteen entertainment options that will make your party fun and enjoyable. Apart from food and gossip, some playful games can add to the merriment of any get-together. If you are calling over a bunch of playful guests, you can win them over with games like Sequence, Pictionary, Taboo, Cards Against Humanity, Jengaetc. If your guests like to dance, make a playlist with some peppy numbers.

Another latest party entertainment trend these days are Photo Booth props. These props are available in a variety of themes for different occasions like birthdays, festivals or anniversaries. All you need are decent photography skills to getting the party rolling with these props. 

After all the hard work that you have done, do not forget to enjoy your own party. Drive away all your thoughts and get in the moment to enjoy the company of your loved ones.

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