You like to think of yourself as an extraordinary home entertainer. Whether it’s a candlelit soiree, chic cocktail party, or casual get together you always manage to outdo yourself—you think so, at least. Here are the seven most common mistakes we make when entertaining at home.
We try a new recipe. It’s tempting to try to impress your guests with that new flavorful dish you found online last week and have been dying to try. The only problem is that it’s a new recipe. Even master chefs no better than to do this when it comes to and event. Instead go with a crowd-pleasing, tried-and-true recipe that you’re sure will be delicious.
We don’t mix and mingle. As the host, you’ve got your hands full. But what good is a party if you don’t get any face time with your friends? Take this opportunity to share the love. Introduce unknown friends to one another and create a little extra energy in the room. Make your guests feel comfortable enough to break out of their familiar circles.
We forget about food restrictions. There is likely to be at least one guest who is allergic to gluten, can’t stand seafood, or doesn’t eat meat all together. Be prepared and put together a well rounded spread that has something for everyone. Include a gluten-free dish, something without cheese or milk, and fresh vegetables to keep everyone happy.
We don’t have cup space. Make sure that there are enough surfaces around your party space for guests to put their drinks down and mingle. Also, guarantee yourself less cleanup time by adding extra trashcans next to the bar and appetizer tables.
We try to do it all in a day. Unless your party involves laying out a bowl of potato chips and a container of dip, you probably need some time to prepare. If possible make the dishes you plan to serve and set out place settings for your guests the night before. Check the bathroom a couple days before your party and ensure it’s stocked with enough toilet paper and hand towels. By covering so many of your bases ahead of time you give yourself a buffer to fix any last minute problems the day of your event.
We host for social media. All of your friends are going to be excited to put pictures up on social media from your event. Instead of letting the entire party be photographed, designate a time when everyone can get a group shot in front of your favorite decorations. If your guests insist on taking pictures throughout the event with smaller groups , encourage interactivity and conversation between capturing those special moments. It will make for a much more memorable event.
We go overboard. Naturally, you want to throw a gathering that rivals others you have been to. However, avoid going so overboard with the planning that you forget to enjoy the event as well. If you spend weeks planning and end up a stress case on the day of the party, it will not be worth all of that effort. When in doubt, remember that nothing beats simplicity.