It’s December, which means all of the holiday festivities are at their peak. It’s such a fun time to get together with loved ones and create memories.
As you prepare and plan for your upcoming duties as a party host this holiday season or in the new year, ask yourself, “is my kitchen ready for all that goes along with hosting a party?”
If not, that’s ok! Keep reading to learn tips for creating a party-ready kitchen.
Create a Plan in Advance
As you think about hosting a party, there are several questions to ask yourself to ensure your end result is what you envisioned.
The most important question is…
How do I want to feel before, during, and after hosting this party?
Your answers will determine how to proceed. For example, if you want to feel organized before your party-goers arrive, then you must plan ahead, create to-do lists, have your shopping, prepping, cleaning, and decorating (if applicable) complete days before to avoid feeling overwhelmed, frantic, and exhausted the day of your event.
If you want to feel relaxed during the party so you can enjoy your guests, then you need to make sure your food is table-ready when guests arrive and provide a self-service bar.
If you want to feel energized at the end of the party when guests depart, then you probably want to use easy-to-clean and/or disposable dishware so you have minimal cleanup.
Other important questions are...
What is the overall party vibe I want to achieve?
Do I want just finger foods for guests to graze on throughout the event or a sit-down meal?
Do I want any entertainment--games, party themes, music, etc.
Do I want to make all food from scratch, have it be the “Best of Costco” prepared foods or a combo of both?
Clean Up Before, During, and After your Event
The last scenario you want is a messy house and a bunch of dishes to clean minutes before your guests arrive. Tidy the house and decorate (if doing a themed party) at least 24 hrs. ahead. Whenever you start cooking for your party (it could be days before), start with an organized kitchen, and do dishes continually throughout the prep and cooking process. Letting pots, pans and dishes pile up until all cooking is finished is a total buzz kill!
Photo Credit by Vogue
Open up the Floor Plan
Look for areas in your kitchen that may bottleneck and see if you are able to open up that area. Having your guest congregate in your cooking or prepping space will drive you crazy, so it is essential to create alternative gathering areas for your guests.The more space you can create the better. Set up a temporary table against a wall in the living or dining room to add more space for party food or for meal prepping beforehand. While opening up the floor plan, don’t forget to add extra seating so your guests have somewhere to relax.
Provide a Beverage Bar
When planning for your party, set up a space for a beverage bar. Whether it is a fold-out table (with a festive tablecloth) or using a separate counter space in your kitchen for drinks, make it easily accessible for people to get refills throughout the party. If using one-time use cups, consider putting a permanent marker at the beverage table so people can write their name on their cup and keep using the same cup throughout your party.
Photo Credit by BoomPix & Living Space Designs
Decorate Smarter not Harder
Contrary to many opinions, your party decor does not have to be over the top! If you want your guests to take home a piece of the party, make your party decorations double as party favors. If your party is during the holidays, use the decorations you already have up at your home as the focal point. For any other time of the year, just focus on two or three areas to make a decorative splash.
Making your Cleaning Up not be a Party Foul
Make sure the trash can is in a place that your guests can easily access. Don’t be afraid to ask someone or even have a designated trash person to keep the trash from overflowing during your party. If using reusable dinnerware, have a bin set up near the sink for the guests to put their dirty dishes in. Have reusable containers ready to put the leftover food in and either give it to guests to take home or pop it in your fridge to enjoy later on. Most importantly, don’t be afraid to ask for help with cleaning up once the festivities are over. Most people love to help, but often don’t ask or know what to do.
You Deserve a Party-Ready Kitchen
The best thing about these tips is that they can be applied to any party, not just at the holidays! So whether you are hosting a birthday party or a family dinner, your kitchen can look fantastic, and be ready to host a memorable party.
Ready for a kitchen upgrade?
Keep us in mind for your kitchen remodel needs!
Entertaining comes with its own set of challenges and needs, and if you have guests over often, it may be worthwhile to adjust the form and function of your kitchen to account for a crowd rather than simply for your immediate family.