‘Tis the season for parties, and if you think your deadline for holly and jolly has passed, here’s some good news: with minimal time and effort, you can still throw a fabulous event. I enlisted the help of Rachael Hofmann, the founder of Boulder’s newest boutique event planning business, DECOR design + production group, and together we’ve assembled the following on the fly holiday guide.
Even the strictest among us enjoys a splurge (or few) during the holiday season, so choose your spread with this in mind. Rachael rightly recommends opting for a mobile menu, finger foods that are easy to eat and require toothpicks rather than silverwear: soup shooters, shrimp wrapped in prosciutto, fig + blue cheese savouries in addition to crudite, cheese and charcuterie, nuts and fruit (a nod to those who insist on remaining disciplined). If your guest list tops 25, Rachael suggests foregoing the shopping and cooking in favor of the dependable and convenient catering at Whole Foods.
More than any time of year, holiday cocktails should be creative and special. In addition to the de rigeur champagne cocktail, Rachael recommends whiskey as the spirit and Google as its recipe nucleas. Additionally, ‘The American Cocktail’ by Crate & Barrel is a booze bible, and Martha Stewart can always be counted on for amazing concoctions (don’t forget to garnish!)
Glassware is one area where Rachael & I are in fierce agreement- special drinks need to be served in real glasses. If you host and entertain more than twice a year, investing in a case of champagne flutes and mason jars (so cheap!!) will cover all your cocktail needs. If you lack the storage space, renting is an easy and convenient alternative (All Events in Longmont), but please leave those SOLO cups where they belong: on the store shelf.
It should come as a surprise to no one that the decor details, all the little touches that make your home warm, inviting, and sparkly, are my favorite part of planning. Placing seasonal fruit like pomegranetes, pears and mandarin oranges (pictured) into glass hurricanes or bowls, and pine cones and other Winter greenery into tablescapes is stylish and inexpensive. If your budget allows for flowers, Rachael recommends outsourcing to Fiori or mixing and matching at Whole Foods. Add mercury votives for sparkle and frasier fir candles for scent.
Invitations from Paperless Post will give guests a stylish heads up.
Music helps set the mood; since most people are maxed out on the Christmas soundtrack, stick to a regular playlist.
Over the course of an evening, the average guest goes through, amazingly, about a pound of ice, so stock up!