Here are some tips to make your next holiday party a success:
Guest list. Inviting a list of safe and predictable friends or family members that get along well may take a lot of the guesswork out of a party. However, if you want to add some interest, invite a few guests from different areas of your life — friends, family, neighbors, co-workers — who might not know each other well. Then give everyone a chance to meet and mingle. Consider the ages of guests too. Some parties are adult-only affairs, and some are more family- and kid– friendly.
Appropriate food. Food is often the key to any successful gathering. For a Christmas party, the dilemma is usually how much the planner wants to coordinate. A meal fills time, but it can be expensive and a challenge to coordinate. A dessert party may be the easiest route, but the key is to pick holiday treats that are not overplayed or predictable.
Decorations and atmosphere. Don’t overlook décor — an important element of any holiday party. Some party hosts spend an immense amount of time and energy making the space look just right, but a few fast, simple touches can be just as festive. Flip through some home or decorating magazines to get ideas for party decor. Don’t forget that candles and holiday music can add big impact for little effort.
Entertainment. Some parties function just fine without a lot of structure. People like to talk, and as long as there are interesting people and enough dialogue, guests may be content to just hang out. Still, hosts should have some activities ready if they sense that the party is struggling. This can include movies, games and other distractions. The key is to assess the atmosphere and not force an awkward game if it is not really needed.
Thinking it through. Overall, the key to a successful Christmas party is to think things through and anticipate what might occur during the event. Don’t stress about every detail, but ponder different scenarios. You want your party to be one that is remembered well by all who attend.