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December 12, 2017

How to Throw a Perfect Holiday Party: A Foolproof Timeline

The holiday season means a jam-packed calendar filled with family celebrations, festive events, and Henderson homes filled with winter parties. If you decided to throw a party and need help organizing before the big day or if you’ve always wanted to host a party but shied away from the thought because you never knew where to start: this blog is for you.

Before we begin, we should note that we recommend buffet style parties so guests can easily serve themselves their desired portions and manage any dietary restrictions. Additionally, a cocktail party, where you serve appetizers instead of a meal, is easiest as you can typically prepare appetizers in advance, they’re usually finger-foods (and therefore no need to worry about utensils), and they’re smaller so they cook faster. However, this timeline works for any type of party.

1 Month Before
Decorate your home for the holidays. Not only will it be the perfect backdrop for your party, but it will also help you get into the holiday spirit.

3-4 Weeks Before
Send out invites. Calendars book up quickly this time of year. If you want to have your nearest and dearest at your party, make sure you let them know with ample notice.

2 Weeks Before
Set aside space and hangers in hallway closets or rent/borrow a coat rack. This will help with wrangling all of your guests’ items, so there’s more room for guests to mingle. Decide on and purchase décor. Don’t forget items like scented candles for setting the atmosphere. Come up with your menu – make sure you’re thinking about a wide variety of simple-to-make items. Don’t forget drink recipes (we recommend a self-serving bar set up with recipe ideas).

1 Week Before
Create a playlist for the party and mix together holiday, modern, and classic tunes. Or, find an already-made holiday playlist on Spotify. Do an inventory check of your serving ware; make sure every item on your menu will have its own serving dish. Create a shopping list for your menu items.

3 Days Before
Purchase all food items and alcohol. Before you head to the store, make sure you have additional items like napkins, garbage bags, toilet paper, hand soap, dish soap, and dishwasher pods. Add them to the list if needed.

2 Days Before
Clean serving plates, label each with the appropriate dish you plan to use to make the process from oven to serving plate seamless. Clean other items like dishes and glassware. Set up the self-serving bar and print out the drink recipes including alcoholic and non-alcoholic options. Come up with a cooking timeline to ensure all menu items will have plenty of time to cook before the party and place it somewhere easy to see in the kitchen.

1 Day Before
Prepare the appetizers and desserts that can be refrigerated in advance. Precut vegetables and garnishes that will hold in the refrigerator. Clean your house, rearrange furniture to make it more conducive to conversations. Place extra rolls of toilet paper in your restroom, make sure there is plenty of hand soap in the bathroom and kitchen areas.

3-5 Hours Before
Buy the ice. Set the décor. Prepare food items that you couldn’t the day before.

2 Hours Before
Give yourself time to get ready and rest.

½ an Hour Before
Start reheating appetizers and place a bucket of ice at the bar area.

5-10 Minutes Before
Place the appetizers, light the candles, start the holiday playlist, and make yourself a drink.

We hope these tips will help you pull off a successful holiday party at your Henderson home. While holiday parties are always fun, throwing a housewarming party is over-the-top exciting because you get to showcase your new home. Check out available Inspirada homes. We would love for you to join our community!

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