so you want to host a christmas dinner party

December is here! Which means entertaining season is also upon us. Personally, it’s one of my favourite parts of the holidays. Not only is it a great time to get together with friends and family you don’t normally see, it gives you an excuse to host! Hosting a dinner party is my favourite. I love having everyone over in my home, laughing and catching up with one another. I love getting to putter around and bring little details together. And so I thought I would share how I normally go about it!

As of late, my favourite way to do this is by suggesting a little potluck. Each guest brings an appetizer, or finger food. That way you aren’t the only one cooking a 5 course meal (and paying for it out of your own pocket). Appetizers are also easy to pick away at as people mingle and walk around your space.

Second, I suggest a BYOB situation but also have a communal drink available in case anyone forgets their own (for me, this is usually sangria, or a seasonal cocktail). It could also be a bowl of punch if you’re not looking to provide alcohol, that way everyone can drink their own drink of choice. While you are putting up a little money as the host to have something for everyone to share, you aren’t paying for every single drink someone has all night.

Third, come up with a final guest list. This can sometimes be hard as you don’t want to overcrowd your space, but also don’t want to leave anyone important out. But more people means less time to chat to each person, and if you want that intimate setting you don’t want 40 people shouting over the volume at each other. My golden number is usually around 20, but it truly depends on how big your space is.

Finally, (and really this is my favourite part) set the mood of the night by decorating. You don’t have to break the bank decking out your house Kardashian-style, but a few carefully chosen pieces can really go a long way in making people feel festive. And sometimes less is more! A couple sprigs of evergreens from the park, a few candles sprinkled around the room and some classic Christmas songs playing in the background can be all you do. It should be fun, not stressful, so don’t feel the need to go overboard.

If you are looking to add a few more touches to your tablescape, below I’ve rounded up some of my favourite (and affordable) decorations. I know quite a few of them are already in my cart!

At the end of the day, hosting should be fun, so remember not to stress too much about the details, know things go wrong and sometimes the best memories come from rolling with the punches. I remember a year where we had a couple people over to see our new house and the power went out that night. We ended up lighting every candle I had and it was such a great night spent crowded around the twinkling of candlelight. Not what I had planned for but magical all the same!

Let me know if any of these tips were helpful. I would love to know if you ended up hosting anything this season because of it!

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