By Amy Thackery
It’s the little details that count!
It’s that beautiful time of year again. Family is getting together, office and holiday party invitations are being sent in the mail, and we’re all starting to size up those boxes in our storage areas.
I just love the feeling of putting on some good music, lighting an apple-cinnamon candle and going through my boxes of holiday décor. Every time I open one of the tattered boxes, it’s like a small trip down memory lane. I love remembering where certain decorations came from and putting my favorite trinkets in their spoken-for positions in my home.
Just about that time, I start thinking about hosting a gathering. I love friends, I love decorating, and I love a fun party!
I don’t think that the best parties are the most expensive ones, and I don’t think that the best parties have to be catered or very fancy. I think that the absolute best parties are the ones where I share good laughs with friends, where I get to feel pretty and all dressed up, where I pay attention to the small details, and where I find myself thinking afterwards, “What a wonderful night!”
The thing about throwing a good party is that you have to give yourself a bit of time to be creative, especially if you don’t have a ton of cash to throw around.
Decorate: Keep it simple and sparkly! For your centerpiece, find one large and one small Mason jar (or two cylinder vases), two teacup saucers to place on top of them, some fun jar filler of your choice and two candles. I always find that if I look outdoors, I can find plenty of filler for my table. Look for pinecones and spray a bit of glue on the tips, then dip them in a little glitter. How about some faux snow and colorful mini-ornaments. Get creative with your holiday palette. While red, green and gold are classic for the holidays, lime green, orange, purple and silver can be just as fantastic and eye catching beyond belief.
Dress: I know we all love to go shopping for the perfect holiday outfit, but really, with all the gifts, food for entertaining, the heating bill and other miscellaneous items, we’re usually left with little extra cash to go shopping for ourselves.
The little black dress . . . it’s sexy, festive and you can change it up at least a few different ways. If you’ve got one in your closet, wear it. Don’t buy a new one, just spice up the one you have. Get some pretty gold and hot pink beads from your local craft store. In only twenty minutes, you can string them up in three different lengths and put those pretties on. Then, think about some vintage clip on earrings or jewels that you have tucked away. Get out those boring ole’ black shoes and clip them on! The more the merrier in this case. Your feet will be ready to ring in the New Year, in style
Drink: Try a signature drink. This keeps cost down on trying to please everyone’s different tastes. Whether you choose a G-rated drink or one of your slick and fancy martinis, don’t let it go unnoticed. For larger glasses, put fresh cranberries and those little silver, edible cake decorating balls in your ice tray (combine with water of course) and freeze them up. They will look festive and classy—a perfect combination in my book! For smaller drinks, like martinis that don’t require ice cubes, find some small twigs from your back yard. I know it sounds a little strange to be putting a stick into your friends’ glass, but imagine the conversation piece you’ve created when their olives are on an actual twig. Happy holidays, friends! Olive you!
Eat: I am not a cook. If it goes in the oven, I burn it. If it gets mixed in, I mix in too much. Trust me when I say that I keep it pretty simple. One thing I do pay attention to is how the food looks. Bread bowls and dip always look fantastic and very gourmet. Instead of just using the bread from the cut, try some colorful, organic chips. They look beautiful surrounding the bread bowl. Remember, it’s those small details that count. Make sure to use your pretty bowls or serving platters for all of your prepared dishes.
Give: So, you’ve decorated your home or table to host a gathering and want it to be memorable and personalized. Remember that it’s not how much you spend on each other, but really the time you spend with one another. Make those moments and memories count. Plan for a seating chart at the table. Wrap and place a small box at each place setting. Inside, write your guest a holiday wish or small note that let’s them know how much you appreciate them. Put a beautiful, stamped name tag on the box with the coordinating note. Trust me, this memento will last much longer and speak much louder than anything that you can buy at the department store.
I hope that you can use some of these thrifty and special ideas to brighten your holiday. Remember, it’s doesn’t have to be expensive to be great; it has to be special and well thought out to be great!
Rare Byrd Creative
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