Editor's Note: Today I am wearing a blouse from Banana Republic, a belt from the 90's, a skirt from Anthropologie, Wolford tights and flats from J.Crew.
I have always loved to host dinner parties. Even when I lived in a smaller place in Dallas in my twenties, I had dinner parties often.
I have ten fail safe rules for throwing a fabulous dinner party and I thought they would be fun to share on the blog!
1. Plan to invite couples who will find each other interesting---Even if your guests have never met, pairing couples together that you know have similar interests can make for a fun and memorable evening---and create new friendships in the process!
2. Set the table and buy flowers a day ahead----Don't add unnecessary stress on the day of your party by waiting to set the table. Get that out of the way early on and save yourself a big headache. It can also give you time to marinate on your setting and allow for changes if needed.
3. When setting the table, be sure to use place cards----This allows you to control where people sit---It's a good idea to separate spouses so they won't cling to each other and create a lull in conversation, and you can sit people who have similar views or interests together, creating a lively atmosphere.
4.Make sure you have all candles and tapper candles you need for the house and table---No sense in running around the house trying to find some at the last minute.
5. Plan a menu where the hard part can be done in advance----I like to get all of my cooking beforehand done in my casual clothes and get things where they are in their dish and ready to go in the oven before my guests arrive. This way your focus isn't split between timing the food and your guests and you don't splatter anything all over your dinner party outfit.
6. Make sure your menu has at least one thing that is out of the ordinary----This adds interest and is a conversation starter. Plus, it's always great to "wow" your guests at least once. One of my favorites is my Marchand De Vin Sauce that goes over Individual Beef Wellingtons.
7. Choose a song list for background music or pick a great Pandora station---NO radio with commercials. Choose music that has mass appeal and is upbeat, but nothing too loud or jarring. You want it to be the background, not the main event.
8. Plan a sassy outfit---Sassy clothes make for a sassy host and it creates a wonderful sense of occasion to be well dressed for entertaining your guests.
9. Check the liquor cabinet to make sure you have all staples and mixers. Decide what crystal you want to use and make sure it's clean.
10. If budget allows, hire help for the kitchen----If you can afford to do this, it's wonderful to have someone taking over the kitchen responsibilities so that you can entertain your guests.
Love everything by Keith Urban and especially this song!
Last night for dinner I made shrimp and Caesar salad.