When it comes to life, let’s face it if you love people you likely enjoy hosting. I recently held an open house at my design studio to gather friends, colleagues, family, and clients. Whether you’re hosting a business event, a birthday party or a church gathering in your home there are some things to think about. Here are a few quick tips on how to make your gathering a well thought through event with style.
1. Know Your Occasion. I know this might sound more than obvious, but why you’re having your party or gathering is important to establish. If you’re rounding people up for a watch party or a big birthday it’s critical to use that as your starting point for determining menus, locations, and who to invite. Think about how many people you can accommodate based on the setting and what type of feel you’re after. If you want an intimate conversation and low key high-class type party, be sure you have gathering space for that type of event.
2. Plan the Venue. The place is a must know. If you’re wanting a dinner party, be sure you have a table or seating setup for everyone to sit down for dinner. If you have to bring in rental pieces by all means do that to pull off the event you’re after. If you’re having an event at a club house or public rental space, be sure to think through the space, does it flow, are there enough seats, cocktail tables, linens, etc. In some cases you may need to sketch out a quick floor plan.
3. Create the theme and Color Scheme. Once you’ve thought through why you’re entertaining and where you are going to hold the festivities, next you’ll want to figure out your theme and color scheme. These two really go well with the occasion and often are an easy determination based off of that. In some cases though the option are vast. Consider thinking outside of the box, but definitely scour Pinterest if you’re all out of ideas. (Note…do not think you have to spend a million dollars to impress your guests.) Use Pinterest for inspiration only, not comparison!
4. Sneak a Peak with the Invite. Consider your theme of the event. Whether it’s a big birthday celebration or an anniversary be sure to create an invitation that gives your attendees a sneak peak of the colors, style, and overall feel of the gathering. For instance if you’re doing a pink sweet sixteen, make sure your invitation exemplifies that. If you’re doing 50 year old birthday party, consider using black and gray as a color scheme. Which ever event your planning for it’s important to think through the details before you hit send on the invites.
5. It’s all in the Deets. No one said you have to go broke to hold a fab party. By all means a party with minimal effort and details can really be a success. Some things I always like to include are fresh flowers (event appropriate) and plenty of food. Little things like writing out the menu or a welcome sign on a chalkboard can add simple touches that don’t cost a lot. Strung lights or background music, both are added details that don’t cost much but really add the charm to a lot of events. Simple is classy. Don’t get all decked out and elaborate. Think of class, easy, and elegant. Use magazines and Pinterest for quick ideas on how to pull off class.
Most importantly, take advantage of gathering people to show them they matter. It’s awesome to have it all look great and inviting, but true hospitality is gathering people to offer them love through your gift of food and fellowship. Be sure everyone attending knows they matter and that they were invited by name to be part of the celebration. Always look for ways to connect people introducing new-comers and asking about their lives. There is something magical that happens when a beautifully designed party, great fellowship, and delicious food all melt together. Use the gathering of people to be an opportunity to share love. It’s what lies ahead for us in heaven, let’s start this goodness on earth with some southern hospitality + style.
I John 3:5 (The Message) Dear friend, when you extend hospitality to Christian brothers and sisters, even when they are strangers, you make the faith visible.
Photos by Gennean
Tanya Hembree calls Franklin, TN home, where she lives an active life with her husband of 20 years and their 3 thriving teenagers. Although a native southern Californian, Tanya has lived in Denver and Austin and is a southerner at heart. A serial entrepreneur, Tanya is also an encourager of women, connector of people, and a pursuer of Jesus. Her crazy full life has taken her from owning a spa and homeschooling her kids to leading a women’s ministry, and doing interior design. Her journey has not been easy, and she’d call herself a “hot mess”, but despite that she desires to live a life in full pursuit of God. On a fun note, Tanya enjoys spa, fashion, travel, and design. She can often be found hanging with her family, spending time with friends, or relaxing at the beach. Connect with her www.tanyahembreedesign.com