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Hosting Your First Holiday Party

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Yes, you can have a holiday housewarming party—even before every box is unpacked and every piece of furniture is in place. There’s absolutely no shame in entertaining in a new house, bare walls and all. Holiday parties fill a space with warmth and love, so why not invite your friends and neighbors to see the bones of your new home?

 

Our holiday housewarming guide is here to help you start a simple tradition and build a community in your new hometown.

 

Photos: Finding Home Farms

 

Dress Your Table

 

Whether you’re hosting a dinner party or a casual open house, there’s no need to convert your home into a floor-to-ceiling winter wonderland. Even if you’re not decorating a tree, you can still bring the wintery scent of spruce to your spacious new kitchen or dining room. Clip evergreen branches from your backyard and combine them with eucalyptus to recreate this fragrant, rustic tablescape by Jess Ann Kirby. If you’re feeling crafty, you might get some holiday tabletop inspiration from Finding Home Farms, where little glass vases are filled with fresh cranberries and foraged sprigs of greenery.

 

Photo: Imbibe Magazine

 

Consider a Caterer

 

Though this may seem like a splurge, it’s not uncommon to find a local caterer at a well-planned party in the suburbs. Just imagine the joy that comes with outsourcing the food shopping, the set-up, the serving, and best of all, the clean-up. When the last guest leaves, you’ll be faced with sparkling kitchen counters instead of a sink full of dishes. (Think of it as a holiday gift to yourself!) Plus, you can still personalize the menu and come up with a signature cocktail. Take advantage of all the storage space in your new kitchen by investing in a beautiful punch bowl, and treat your guests to a cranberry and tea-infused Prosecco and Port Punch  from Tasting Table, or a gorgeous, fruity, sparkling Gin Punch from Imbibe Magazine.

 

Photo: Jo Malone UK

Little Conveniences, Big Wins

 

Even if you’ve comfortable with entertaining in a small space, you’ll quickly discover that larger spaces make entertaining so much easier. You won’t have to pile everyone’s coat on your bed because a suburban home generally comes with an actual coat closet. Got a bunch of kids running amuck? Cue up some holiday movies on Netflix, and set them up with some snacks in your new family room. Need additional party seating? Find a well-designed card table with matching chairs, which you can store in your new garage or basement. Another bonus? Multiple bathrooms for party guests. Equip each one with a holiday candle and a set of scented matches. Jo Malone’s Pine & Eucalyptus Home Candle infuses a room with the whisper of spruce while Diptyque’s Exquisite Almond Candle comes in a festive red casing and fills the air with sweetness and light.

 

Cover Photo: Jess Ann Kirby