Get Ready for the Holidays with These Festive Tips
It’s the most wonderful time of the year. But even though we definitely think the classic tune rings true, the holidays can also feel like the most stressful time of the year. Especially if you’re hosting.
We love gathering all our friends, family and loved ones together, setting the table and letting the laughter and mulled wine flow. Everyone is cheerier. Chilly temperatures outside make everything feel warmer and more intimate inside. And there’s just something undeniably magical in the air.
Whether this is your first time having people over or you’re truly a hostess with the mostest, we have a few tips that always make things feel light, bright and merry.
Pack that pantry!
A well-planned shindig is great, but we’re also huge fans of impromptu get togethers. The key to being ready to host at a moment’s notice is having a well-stocked pantry. We’ve always got at least a case of wine tucked away, along with spirits (we’re tequila fans) and sparkling water. You can make flavourful simple syrups to whip up simple cocktails in no time. So, what’s in our pantries? Anchovy-stuffed olives, dolmas, candied nuts, truffle chips, saucisson and lots and lots of cheese.
Create a welcome pack
If you’re not just hosting for a party but having guests in from out of town, having a little standard “welcome pack” for guests makes them feel extra special and frees you up for other hosting duties. We have a note that details WiFi passwords, instructions for the TV and helpful tips for their stay and tuck that amongst a basket or bag with some basic toiletries, and maybe a couple paracetamols for the inevitable hangovers.
Spring for a coat rack
Though it might seem like something you’ll only need once a year, any good hostess knows the importance of having a sleek coat rack where guests can sling winter jackets and scarves when they walk in the door. You’ve spent hours prepping for your party, cleaning and tidying, so don’t distract from the festive atmosphere with a mound of damp coats in view.
DIY a guest room
Again, if you’re hosting overnight guests, it’s the little things that matter. Not all of us are lucky enough to have a dedicated guest room, but that doesn’t mean that you can’t make guests feel truly welcome and that they have their own dedicated space. It can be an air mattress blown up in your office or even the sofa in the living room; with the right setup (amazing sheets, a lovely throw blanket), it will feel like a beautiful, special space. Bonus points for setting up a folding screen to give them an extra sense of privacy.
Prep, prep, prep!
When cooking for a dinner party or a cocktail party, we tend to opt for things that can either be made fully ahead or that can be prepped 90% of the way and then tossed together at the last minute with ease. Soup is a great option for a starter as you can make it ahead and keep it simmering on the stove until guests sit down. Room temperature vegetable dishes are fab. And cookie dough made ahead and popped into the oven right before that Christmas book club is fab. It’s about making hosting fun and enjoyable, not about being a master chef. Think effortless!
Take a deep breath
And remember to have fun! Hosting is a joy, so try to revel in the company of those you love and soak up this dreamy season.