holiday party alcohol

Image: aya padrón via Flickr CC.

Whether you’ve been the host for a work party or even something smaller like a friends’ gift exchange there are a few essentials to make any party a success.

  1. Music. The cornerstone of literally any good party regardless of the size is the music. It sets the tone and mood for the event. If you go for more classic orchestral Christmas songs like those from Bing Crosby or for more festive contemporary tunes from N’Sync and Michael Bublé, the music determines the energy of the evening. Create a playlist in advance and make sure it is long enough for the duration of your party.
  2. Festive Décor. One of the main ingredients that sets a holiday party apart from a regular party is the décor. Beautiful ornaments, a decorated tree and garland strung with lights all add magical cheer to a holiday event. Even if you don’t want to purchase all the holiday décor, purchasing winter floral like Holly and boughs and placing it in vases can make for a beautiful party. You can even get creative and make a wreath or a centerpiece.

    happy holidays, holiday season

    Festive decor is essential for holiday entertaining. / Image: Bill Dickinson via Flickr CC

  3. Holiday Scent. Having a holiday scent takes a party to the next level and makes your guests feel at home. Try to find a scent like evergreen or cinnamon spice, and have candles burning in your living room and bathroom to set a subtly festive ambience.
  4. Beverages. Seasonal cocktails can change an entire atmosphere. Of course, it’s nice to always have beer and wine options on hand, but you might also want to serve up your own cocktail representative of the holiday season. Think mint and cinnamon flavors or chocolate rimmed glassware. Mulled wine and spiced hot cider with whiskey are also good options.
  5. Food. Snacks and light bites for your guests are essential. If you don’t have time to cook up snacks for your guests, swing by your local Trader Joe’s or other grocery store where they have an amazing selection of treats to share. Cheese and crackers, chips and dip – you don’t have to get too fancy but you do have to provide at least a couple of snacks.