Monday, December 13, 2010

Entertaining for the Holiday's...How to make the most of it..

What a way to create such a dramatic entrance for the holiday's!! Now though this is strong a statement, you may not want to have fragile ornaments on stairs especially once the bubbly has been poured. Without a doubt, its an exciting image that you'll never forget...makes you jealous doesn't it?

With that thought in mind...Entertaining for the holidays is usually a great way to exhibit your skills in the kitchen, and with decor, by hosting with hopes to create a wonderful memorable experience with those you love.To begin we need to sit down and grab a pen and paper and jot down a few things:

  • When entertaining you need to figure out what it is that you want to showcase, and how you plan to do so. Begin with the theme, number of guest, and the menu based on the likes and dislikes of the possible guest.
  • Once the theme is chosen...Send and invite. If you are tech savvy make a digital invitation, most times its an easier way to check reservations of those attending, easy to design an invite and lets face it...its less waste and efficient. If you would rather send a card think of something cute simple festive and even handmade. It must communicate the theme whether it carries the color palette of the decor or something that is to be represented on the day of the event. Give yourself enough time to send them out and get a response from your guest in-case somethings need to be reworked.
  • Plan the menu...there is nothing like great food good company and a great glass of wine. Be aware of all your guests, if you are planning a smaller gathering look to add a dish that relates to each one of the guest attending...this will surly make you the most caring and attentive friend or family member. + 10pts.!!
  • Once you've assembled that part of the puzzle...lets tackle the decoration. This is what matters most to make the space inviting and worth remembering...Based on your initial planning, choose 2 or 3 colors that you want to use through out the space. Keep in mind your existing color scheme in the space. This keeps the space from looking like a disarray of mis-matched decoration. Now build your inventory...I like to go to a local discount store and buy my inexpensive ornaments in solid finishes and several different sizes. I then add a few of my more pricey ornaments here and there in a contrasting finish. Don't forget ribbon wrapping paper in coordinating colors and textures and greenery. All these things grouped on the mantle, under the tree, console, or hanging off a chandelier make warmer more inviting spaces for the holidays. Using assorted box sizes wrapping paper and ribbon make for more inexpensive decoration that will fill up the bare areas of the space. If stacked in an interesting manner they give the allusion of a person that is giving...This is also a great time to get creative with your existing things.

  • Look into what you own that can showcase a special something for the guests. This picture wreath could be special memories for that entire year, it could be pictures of all the guest, or simply something directly related to you. This is a great simple and elegant manner of decorating for the holiday. Then lets take a trip in the yard...clip some holly berries, gather pine cones, branches, pine clippings, and fill a glass bowl or place them around the room. This idea gives a custom look to your decor and also may bring in scents of the outdoors into the house such as the pine that reminds us that "tis the season." +15pts.

  • For dinner...think easy serving, cards at each place setting...or a framed picture of the person to sit there...this can be a way to sit the mother in law on the other end of the table...far far away from you...if thats what you want...LOL! Try to incorporate coordinating dinnerware with the rest of the holiday decor. A plain white set of dinnerware is perfect and can be used for any occasion...Have all the appropriate serve-ware close by for the conversation to be ongoing with minimal interruptions...DON'T FORGET THE CANDLES....candle light flickering should be present on all surfaces and the entire foot print of the space. They instantly add warmth and evoke a feeling of invitation and relaxation of home. Make sure centerpieces are low enough to allow for conversation across the table yet are attractive and festive...a few poinsettias and sprinkled ornaments will do the trick..

This happens to be a dining table centerpiece a friend and I came up with for a holiday decorating class...I love works so well...Who needs ideas for holiday centerpieces? I give this centerpiece 20 pts.!!

ENJOY YOURSELF and don't stress!!! All in all its a time to share with friends and family. If you can involve them in putting it all together great...just make sure you don't drain yourself to the point that you can't enjoy all your efforts.

oh...last thing...hostess gifts...perhaps ornaments they can choose directly off the tree...that can go further...
[design decorate do it yourself] until then...