Preparing Your Home For The Perfect Dinner Party*


*This is a collaborative post*

If you are planning on throwing your very own dinner party fairly soon, then your mind may be swimming with amazing recipes and flavours to bring to the table for your guests. However, one thing you may not have thought of is how you are going to prepare for the night. If you are going to be using your kitchen to host, you may want to start thinking of ways to utilise the space you have to make your kitchen look amazing for your guests.
Dividing all of your cleaning into portions will make the task seem so much more managable but before you start on the cleaning, why not have a look and see if there is anything you can update in your kitchen? You could change your taps or replace the sink with Tap Warehouse, or maybe you’d prefer to stick to the simple elements and replace your kitchen handles and apply a lick of paint to the walls. Make some fun changes to the layout of your kitchen, rearrange your cupboards and even hang up some art for effect.
When it comes to preparing and cleaning ready for the big party, you will want to make sure that you strategize and plan out which parts of the room you will clean each day. Cleaning can be a mammoth task but by tackling small chunks of it at a time you'll feel a lot less overwhelmed. Start out by cleaning the inside of your oven and microwave, then move onto the surfaces and cabinet doors. Bleach your sink and taps to get them looking spotless, and then finish off by mopping the floor the night before the event. This will save you a lot of stress on the actual day of the party and will allow you to feel house proud when your guests arrive.

Once you’ve cleaned your room to the max, you can then start playing around with decorations and add any finishing touches to the room. When the bulk of your party preparations are done, you can move onto the food. Don’t be tempted to make something crazy for your guests, or to try something you’ve never made before because it will no doubt cause you a great deal of stress and you’ll be more likely to make mistakes. Pick a meal you are comfortable making, and preferably one that you can prepare ahead of time to save you spending the whole evening slaving away in the kitchen.
Now that you’ve got the food sorted, your kitchen looking amazing and clean, you can move onto setting the table. Remember you don’t need to go all out on the decorations if you don’t want to, a simple table setting can be just as effective. But as a rule of thumb you want to make sure that you have enough space on the table to fit plates, cutlery, side dishes, condiments and drinks comfortably.
Elements that you can add to your table or the room to create an atmosphere could be:

Candles

Either have one candle in the middle of your table as a centrepiece or place some around the room to add soft lighting.

Fairy Lights

Rather than having the main lights on as you all tuck into dinner and drink wine, create a more relaxed atmosphere by hanging some fairy lights in the room or even using some LED spotlights for a soft light.

Music

Depending on the event in question, you could have the radio playing or one of your favourite playlists… or dare we say some Christmas music.

Flowers

You don't want a massive bouquet in the middle of the table because it will block everybody’s view, but there is nothing wrong with placing a small vase with a few flowers in the middle of the table to add some colour and vibrancy.

Table Cloth

Not only an aesthetic option, but a practical one too. Chances are if you have eight guests at the table and food in the middle on dishes, someone is going to spill something. By using a table cloth you’ll be protecting your dining table as well as creating a theme for the setting in question. It might be advisable to avoid white though!

Name Cards

If you are hosting for quite a few different people, you might want to stick name cards on the table to avoid everyone standing in confusion when looking for where to sit. It also means you can tactically move people around who don’t get on as well to avoid any issues and arguments at the dinner table in front of everyone.

*Contributed by Sam Jones



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