I am excited to share some Holiday Entertaining Ideas with you! You are in luck because today for our Seasons of Home Holiday Series (hosted by Ella Claire Inspired) there are 15 other bloggers with some amazing ideas for Tablescapes, Holiday Table Settings and Entertaining! I almost backed out of joining the group for all of those reasons-
#1- We have a smaller scale home
#2- Our kitchen is about 10×13
#3- There is NO dining room to be scene or heard of in this 1100 square foot tiny cape
But I thought REALLY Brooke! I don’t think EVERYONE as the ideal home to entertain in and not everyone likes to do a formal Tablescape. So I hope my tips help and inspire you to invite people into your “not ideal home”.
Because any home is ideal for sharing love and thanks!
We moved from a larger home in Utah where I hosted Thanksgiving for 7 years! I can remember thinking “we need a bigger dining space”! How stupid I was to say that, looking at it now. We always think we need something else. I am tearing up writing that, I don’t know why. I just think
we I need to stop and be thankful for what I have. I don’t want my blog to every make you feel less than. I like to use what I have and not stress about hosting, when I see good things through the year I snatch them up and hang onto them for entertaining, just good basics. This post is sponsored by Carvan (use coed NWG17 on any of the items for 20% off!) I did select every single piece I used for this post. I really love to partner with great companies because it enables me to share MORE content and ideas with you.
Here are my 6 TIPS for Casual Entertaining-
#1- CLEAN UP- Before you start setting up for a party, DECLUTTER! I like to clean off my counters and put things away in a box and hide it in a room or the basement. Meaning- put away the toaster, blender, basket of papers anything that you don’t need for the party and that is taking up precious counter space and doesn’t feel or look good.
#2- EVALUATE– Take a look at what you already have to set the table with. I like to use really nice cloth/linen napkins that can mix with any Holiday. That way I am not running out to buy paper napkins that coordinate every party. I love to use THESE because they look great all year, they are not just specific to Christmas Table Setting. When I had a bigger house with more storage I had a set of 12 red plates, a set of 12 blue plates and a set of 12 white plates. If you have the space and want all that then by all means. BUT it is so not necessary! Really you cannot go wrong with white plates. They look great with any Holiday. (THESE are my white plates, I layered on gold chargers I found at GoodWill).
*Burlap Sack HERE
#3- STATIONS– Create a station for everything! Think of your home as little vignettes. A station to get drinks. A station to get warm drinks. A station for food. A station for dessert. I set up THIS tea cart with water, yummy drinks, dessert and cups above it. I did get THESE new green cups this year- I am obsessed with them!! I LOVE the color green and they feel vintage. (They will look great in the Spring too).
The trick to setting up a good looking tea/bar cart is to layer! I see a lot and they just look flat. Notice how I added two cutting boards leaning against the wall. I just got THIS tall black marble one. I also gave the cart some life with a little green tree planted in THIS marble pot.
It is also really good to keep some dishtowels over on your teacart. I love THESE simple red linen stripe ones! Just gorgeous.
#4- DECORATE- I like to decorate with food, real plants and lights! Let the colors of the season be your theme and decor. I found oranges with the green stems still on and they couldn’t have been prettier. Also pomegranates are really pretty for Christmas. I like put out little dishes of chocolate too to munch on after dinner (or before:)). Also add a variety of height on your table. Cake Pedestals are the BEST for this, I used THESE marble and wood stands. They are not too tall so you don’t have to remove them when you sit down to eat. That is the key! You want decor that looks good from all angles and isn’t too big or tall. (THESE pinecone lights are the best…battery operated!)
#5- SET IT UP– Typically if you are hosting a bigger party good friends offer to bring food. I like to have all the food set-up before people arrive. So if someone is bringing a salad I plan where the bowl will go. You could place salad tongs in that spot to have it all ready. We don’t have a lot of counter space so I used THIS large cutting board to cover my farm sink. I left a spot for water to run (you can easily slide the board over to get into the water).
#6- ENTERTAINMENT PLAN– I had a message from a reader who said she is hosting 25 people, that included like 12 kids and teenagers. She was stressed about what they would all do when they arrived and dinner was still being prepared. I told her what I used to do! This is good. Really good and important to all your hostesses sanity! Make a simple scavenger hunt OUTSIDE! Have them bundle up and give them papers and have a few prizes…keep it simple, kids like money! Send the big teenagers and dads with the little kids. And give yourself a breather. (You can find scavenger hunts HERE).
Stop by these bloggers for more Entertaining Ideas and Tablescapes
and our featured guest, House of Five