Friday, June 3, 2016

building the hostess house: your castle & working within those parameters

Alright so first thing's first. Let's get real and hit you where you live: your home. Does it have a big front yard? Big backyard? No yard? Is it a small apartment? A big apartment? A dorm? You laugh at the dorm part but we definitely hosted even in our dorm room days. What are the most comfortable spaces to host people and get to know your capacity. Could you comfortably fit four? Eight? Twelve? Twenty? Then work around that area because you can easily setup for people if you work within your space's limitations and your own creativity.  
When we first were married Matt and I lived in a one bedroom apartment and since I had all these wedding presents I wanted to throw a dinner party. I was a married grown up now and I had to prove it. Using my trusty 'Barefoot Contessa at Home' cookbook and with zero faith from my friends that the food I made would be edible, I hosted a dinner party: the first B&W Christmas Party. I estimated we'd be about 8 total (Ambre, Man-D, Michelle, Milena, Jonathan, Matt, Me, and lil' Charlotte). The apartment had a little dining area across from the kitchen but it felt tight to cram us in there so I moved our dining table out to the living room so we could eat under the lights of the Christmas tree.
I'm not sure when the idea came to me but it felt really revolutionary. We moved our arm chairs and coffee table to the original dining area which made a little seating area for appetizers and we had dinner in the living room. I learned that 8-10 was capacity for our little apartment and any subsequent parties were kept about that small. No one is forcing you to host a dinner in the dining area, use your space to suit your party. And move furniture around! I do it all the time depending on the party.
Now that we have a backyard and front yard and long driveway we've setup for parties all over the place and we can actually make normally drab areas look pretty cute. We've even used the front yard for splash parties with cousins and as a "baseball field" for our Sandlot party.
So give your house a once-over and see where you could host a party and how many people you could reasonably fit in there comfortably. You might be more an intimate party space even if you have a tiny apartment, if you got a couch you can make it a cocktail party. If you have a big backyard open space, why not a big ole picnic party where everyone brings a blanket.

Get creative! Get partying!

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