You’ve done it! You’ve moved into your first place that’s not your parents’ or a college dorm. You deserve to enjoy a nice time with family and friends, relaxing, eating and drinking…but suddenly you’re overwhelmed at the idea of hosting all these people for the very first time! What to do?
Relax. A successful housewarming party is just a few well-planned steps away.
Your new place will be the centerpiece of the entire party, so spruce it up! Choose a simple, welcoming theme (nothing too eccentric!), and create some basic decorations to help the home look ready to host your favorite people. Also, clean and clean thoroughly, especially if you’ve invited your grandmother! The first things people will notice are clutter (they make drawers for that stuff, you know), dirty dishes, dirty floors and grimy toilets and sinks. Keep in mind that guests will likely spend most of their time in your living room, but many will make extended trips to the bathroom and kitchen. Take care of those areas first, and leave the window-cleaning and linen-washing for the last minute so you can skip them if you’re out of time.
Make the entrance extra appealing by hanging a bright, flowered plant and placing a welcome mat just outside the door. Some guests will want to remove their shoes (or you may require that they do), so create an obvious shoe spot for them. Light candles that smell good, as well; they’ll create a nice ambiance and cover any pet odors that your cleaning didn’t quite take care of.
You’ll certainly want to feed your guests. Most of your budget should be spent on the food and ensuring that it’s scrumptious! Before you make any food-related decisions, call your guests to make sure there are no food allergies or preferences (didn’t your sister just start a gluten-free diet?).
Next, consider whether you’ll cater or cook on your own. It’s your first party, so you might give the catering idea some extra thought. You can always throw in one or two home-cooked favorites if you really want to prove your mettle in the kitchen! If you choose not to cater, however, there is certainly something special about cooking the food at home and putting forward a unique menu. Just be sure you have ample time and some extra, super-easy recipes just in case you overestimate your abilities!
Professional advice suggests there should be a mix of food that is light and heavy in taste (and calories). Also, unless you’re hiring professional wait staff, you’ll want to serve the food buffet-style. Not only is it practical, it allows each guest the freedom of eating only the foods they really want to without feeling any sense of impropriety.
If this isn’t a group that knows each other well, you’ll need something to fill in the awkward silences. Be sure to set the right tone with soothing but interesting music. You might also consider some passive activities or games to keep everyone entertained.
Once everyone is gathered, offer a tour of your new place. Doing so will keep grandma from wandering into your bedroom and coming across an all-too-personal effect. It will also help everyone feel especially welcome.
Finally, don’t forget to reserve a space for gifts. You want to pick a spot that’s obvious (so guests won’t be asking for it, making someone who didn’t bring a gift uncomfortable). But don’t write a big sign that reads, “GIFTS!” or you’ll look a bit…greedy. Instead, place a few wrapped boxes on a table in the common area, and let those who brought gifts add to the pile.
Now that you’ve got the basics covered, enjoy your party and bask in the well wishes of your nearest and dearest!
This article was written by Billy Dunham, a home improvement expert who looks forward to helping you have an even better home! He writes this on behalf of Terry Costa, your number one choice when looking for formal dresses. Check out their website today and see what they have for you!