H&B's Holiday Hosting Tips

Katherine Flynn

With our office covered in twinkly lights and a big tree in the corner with our Richer Poorer socks hung like stockings, the holidays are officially here and underway! We're planning parties, running all over town, and gifting to our to #apronsquad rockstars! Whether you're hosting the family this year or having friends over for an ugly sweater party, we got you covered to keep everyone happy! Plus, some hostess gifts that are WAY better than a bottle of champagne.

  • Need to decorate on a budget but you don't have time to DIY? When you go grocery shopping, also grab your table centerpiece. Create an all-natural, edible centerpiece with pomegranates, dried citrus, vases filled with hazelnuts and cranberries and cinnamon stick garlands. Check out this article here for step by step instructions

Photo Credit: Katherine Flynn // Cooking Light
  • If you love cooking for others, let your main dishes shine and designate dessert to a guest OR pick-up something from your favorite local bakery. Not only will you be saving yourself stress, you're highlighting a small business... and what's better than coffee, conversation, and a delicious dessert to end the night? 
  • Want to do more than just happy hour and dinner? Tell your friends to grab their coats, beanies, and gloves and go walking around the neighborhood to stroll the beautifully decorated neighborhood. You'll be responsible for some warm apple cider and hot coco. Throw in some peppermint sticks if you're ending the night with this new tradition! 
  • Don't forget about white elephant! Tell everyone to bring a white elephant gift with the budget of $10 and their favorite beer or wine. Put together a no-fuss cheeseboard and whip up a quick salad and family style recipe, like Mac and Cheese and you're set! Here are some of our favorite holiday recipes.
  • Need a hostess gift or want to give a memorable party favor? Instead of running into Trader Joe's minutes before the party (we've all been there), plan ahead and make an edible gift! Check out these gourmet goodies from salted caramel sauce to homemade marshmallows! 
Photo Credit: Bon Appetit
  • If you're hosting a party of all ages and want to avoid the TV to entertain the younger guests, buy a holiday craft kit! Steer clear of ones with paint or glue, but anything with crayons, stickers and Frosty the Snowman will definitely keep them occupied for hours. Have a more adventurous group of kids (or adults!)? Grab some old clothes, create a make shift pile of costumes and props and let them interpret a holiday play. Trust us, you'll never forget how funny it is to see your niece running across the stage with your pillowcase on her head pretending to be one of the Three Wise Men. 
  • Tell everyone to skip the presents this year and have your guests bring a toy or food for a charity drive. Pick a cause that hits home and include information on who it benefits in your invite. You could even go a step further and have a gift wrapping and card writing station if you can send gifts pre-wrapped to the toy drive. 
  • Nothing is better or easier than game night. From holiday themed bingo to Christmas charades to giving out awards to the ugliest sweater wearer, these kind of nights are always winners. 
  • Skip the suits, high heels and fancy outfits and tell everyone to come in pajamas and bring their favorite cookies. Heat up some hot coco, pop in your favorite holiday movie and you'll have a platter of different cookies to snack on all night long. 

Photo Credit: Fork and Flower
  • Love your wrapping paper? Let it double as a table runner and keep table settings simple with a tangerine on each plate. Grab your scissors and let your garden accent the table with fresh herbs. 
  • Setting a New Years resolution this year but actually want to keep it past January? Put up a chalkboard at the party and have everyone write down what they loved about the year and what one resolution they have for 2018. It's a great icebreaker and plus, you can keep your friends accountable. 
  • Host a potluck and grab one of those cookbooks that seem to line the shelves all year and tackle a new recipe. Test it out before the actual party just in case of a kitchen disaster. If it's a success, print out the recipe for everyone to take home and ask your guests to do the same with their recipes so everyone leaves with a mini cookbook dedicated to that night

Hosting a party this season? Throw on your apron and tag us @hedleyandbennett so we can follow along! Happy Holidays!