Planning the perfect Christmas party

The Christmas party season is almost upon us, and diaries are filling up fast. If you’ve yet to organise your celebration, whether with family, friends or colleagues, you’re going to need to act pretty quickly. Luckily we’ve got you covered with a quick guide to putting on a party that your guests will remember (for the right reasons!)

Menu

Food and drink is such a huge part of Christmas, so if you’re hosting a seasonal party it’s one of the key things you must get right. You don’t want to overface your guests - they need to be feeling relaxed and comfortable enough to mingle and dance the night away, not head home at 9pm to sleep off the meal.

Equally though, if you let them leave hungry, you’ll never live it down. A sit down meal is probably a bit much for this type of event, so your best bet is to source some impressive canapés (think traditional Christmas food but with a modern take) or go for a buffet style meal.

Drinks

Either way, you want to ensure you pair the food with some suitably celebratory drinks. Don’t be stingy on the alcohol, but also remember to provide plenty of choice for your non-drinking guests (orange juice or tap water doesn’t really cut it any more).

Bubbly is always the go to choice for a celebration, and champagne is the king. Craft beers are also a good idea for those who don’t have a sweet tooth, and you’ll also want a well stocked spirits bar, especially if you’re dancing til the early hours.

Music

Don’t fall into the trap of leaving the music selection up to whoever brings an iPod. You don’t want your guests subjected to two hours of someone’s favourite experimental prog-rock. Equally, as the host you can’t take on the role of music curator yourself - you’ll be busy keeping your guests well fed and entertained.

If you can hire a DJ, you don’t need to worry, but if not perhaps find a friend who’s willing to take charge for the night and work on some playlists in advance. Don’t overdo the Christmas classics - your guests will want something they can dance to as well. Start slow and build up the bpm as the night turns into morning.

Décor

When it comes to decorating your venue, less really is more. You don’t want to create a Santa’s grotto experience or blind your guests with a million fairy lights. Keep it simple and classy - maybe some stripped back lighting, a few discreet Christmas decorations and some restrained table decor. You want your guests to take home memories of a great night, but not bucketloads of glitter.

Clothes

What to wear, what to wear? The eternal question. As the host, you want to strike a balance between looking the part without seeming to overshadow your guests. Now’s not the time to unleash your inner Elton John. Instead, opt for understated elegance, and as you’re probably going to be running around after your guests all evening, make sure you’re at least half way comfortable. Those platform heels can probably stay in the cupboard.

If you want to add some co-ordination to your evening, suggest a dress code to your guests in advance. Nothing too strict (it is Christmas) but equally not too cheesy either. If you’re looking to pair comfort and style, you could take some inspiration from Porto Brazil´s collection of jumpsuits and maxi dresses 

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