Last years holiday party was a small affair. We were living in a 600 square foot apartment that was packed to the brim with furniture and three people living in the space. Add to that an overstuffed christmas tree and the fact that my sister and I decided to cook for the party ourselves. You can imagine that for the 8 or so guests who attended the party, there was no space to comfortably relax or mingle.
This year we have a new apartment and a bit more space. So of course we have to up the game when it comes to the party.
OPERATION… HOLIDAY PARTY ON STEROIDS!
Phase 1…. The Invitation
The original plan was to go as far as having printed invitations - but the cost of that just didn’t make sense considering we were only inviting 40-50 people. Instead I decided on a paperless post invitation. Cute, simple, easy to use and does a great job of tracking my guest list.
Phase 2…. Decorations
I knew I wanted a massive tree that was already lit with the star already place. In my head I had visions of baskets of ornaments (shatterproof this year) situated next to the tree and throughout the night guests would casually meander over and decorate at their leisure. This is still the plan. In addition to the tree I had a few DIY projects that I wanted to get done well in advance of the party.
1. Wood monogram wreath for the door. This was very simple. I just purchased a letter K from Ky Grace Designs on Etsy and a gold wreath hanger from Ebay. Closer to the party I will pickup a fresh wreath from the farmers market and attach the K for hanging. Voila! Easy entry decor.
2. Running down our hallway we have a sprinkler pipe on the ceiling. The plan is to run garland down the pipe and hang silver metal snowflake candle holders at every place the garland is fixed to the pipe. Obviously flameless candles will be the way to go here. I figured this was a nice way to help bring out the holidays in some of the other parts of our apartment.
3. Up until now I haven’t had a tree skirt so what better time than the present! Tonight my cousin Colleen and I will be attempting to sew our very first tree skirt. We will be following THIS pattern from Design Sponge.
4. Last but not least a DIY craft for the guests at the party. Maybe they don’t feel like crafting - but maybe they do! I want to keep it simple and avoid getting glitter and glue all over the apartment. At the same time I wanted to give people the chance to express their creativity. Why not? So when I found various guidelines for DIY scrabble ornaments online I thought it would be perfect. I ordered all the supplies off ebay for less than $40. 200+ letter tiles, 30 wooden tile holders and a extra long spool of red satin ribbon. I will have my mom pre cut the tile holders to various lengths (3,4 and 5 letter lengths) and I will pre-glue hanging loops to save some time. That way at the party all people have to do is pop on the letters they like. I’m sure after a few drinks our tree will be festively decorated with words like “penis” or “fart”.
Phase 3….. The Atmosphere
The two most important parts of the atmosphere is going to be music which I haven’t fully decided on yet. I think the best plan is going to be a mix of contemporary holiday pop songs and frank sinatra, nat king cole vintage retro goodness. Finally the pièce de résistance and my all time favorite - the Holiday Yule Log from Time Warner Cable. Free in HD and 3D on demand - if you have Time Warner Cable. You’re welcome. :)
Phase 4….. FOOD & DRINK
This was the part I was most afraid of. I love cooking and last year Lizzy and I really enjoyed waking up early and doing all the mise en place. But at the same time cooking for 30 people is a lot of pressure. You need at least six or seven dishes if you are doing small passed plates. Plus to make sure that you have enough food for everyone to have first and seconds of everything is tough. And what if they didn’t like my food?! This year I just wanted to relax the day of the party and enjoy my friends and family. So I looked into hiring a private chef to cater the party not really sure if it’s something that would be reasonably priced for a small party. I was totally surprised to find out that it WAS reasonable. For maybe a couple hundred dollars more than the cost of food alone I could have a fantastic private chef come in with a server, cook the entire menu, serve it and then clean up afterwards. DONE! BTW if you are in need of hiring a private chef check out KitchenSurfing. It’s so easy to use and really works with any budget!
So that’s what we’re doing. Instead of stressing out over cooking and making sure everyone likes my food - I will be focusing on enjoy the time with my family and creating some delicious signature cocktails.
With only 16 days between today and the party, everything is well under way. I’ll keep you posted on the details and updates as they come up! :)
I’m super excited to share with you our latest new favorite thing! We have been wanting to add some art and color to the apartment and recently we stumbled upon the perfect thing!
Damien Hirst x Supreme collaboration dot series skate boards. We love them - no single color dot is the same as another. I love the transition of size from small to large and best of all it’s a medium that means something to me. You may not have known this but I went through an entire phase of skateboarding in my early New York City years.
I recently purchased another great piece of art for the guest bathroom that I can’t wait to share with you. Unfortunately it’s not an original or part of a print series the way the Damien’s are - but it’s still just as cool.