If you want to have a social gathering that is easy to organize and fabulous to attend, there is no better way to go than a cocktail party. Cocktail parties are easy on your wallet, too. Create a theme as a basis for further planning and make it a discrete; such as favorite color or seasonal mood. Now that we have the basics covered, let us move on- to organizing.
Set a date at least a month before the very party and I always prefer a weekend. If you want a small and intimate party, your home will be enough. However, if you have bigger plans, check out your local hotel and restaurant options. Also, don’t forget putting effort in designing the invites. Remember, it’s all about the details!
The ideal menu for a cocktail party is made of small delicious finger foods that can be eaten in a bite or two. If your party is taking place during the hours of lunch or dinner, make sure you have enough of these bites to replace a meal. When choosing food, always go seasonal. Fresh ingredients you can find on local market are definitely the tastiest option. Your menu should consist of 5 different foods (minimum). You can never guess if some guest does not like corn or tomatoes, for instance. Experiment with different recipes.
Atmosphere is the single most important thing at any party. You will accomplish that with the space decoration and music. Incorporate the theme of your party into the space, but be discrete in doing so. If you, for instance, have chosen red color as a theme, you can arrange red roses and scented candles throughout the space, etc. Make sure that your guests can move through the space easily and create chit-chat areas. Include small tables to create mini-food stations. Avoid unflattering overhead lights, and opt for mood-enhancing candles instead. Choose music that will go well with your theme and your guests (e.g. red is the color of tango).
Make sure you that, during the party you do not run out of food or drinks. Stock up on boutique wines or try to find cheaper but good ones on sale in your local store or online. Always buy food backups (almonds, nuts, olives, crackers, popcorns, etc.). Last, but not the least, enjoy the party. The host is essential for setting up the mood.
(MEL welcomes guest writer, Roxana Oliver of stylebyasia.com)