For most of us, our desire to entertain friends and family has to be carefully balanced according to a strict household budget. Much as we’d like to have a gala party at home or do things with a degree of sophistication like the well-heeled segment of society, we are constantly battling numbers in our bank account. However, I have to say here that bringing an element of style into your dinner parties doesn’t necessarily need loads of cash. A savvy shopper will definitely be able to scour through the neighborhood market and come up with a few great bargains to set the party swinging and grooving.
So…what does it take to add a bit of glamour to your party? The next time you are planning on having a drinks-only party – whether it is cocktails or mocktails – here are some things you could stock on to improve your entertaining experience.
1. Glass Pitcher
How do you usually serve drinks? Out of bottles or cartons? If you want the drink to look truly inviting and festive, you must invest in a glass pitcher. That’s one thing a host or hostess cannot afford to ignore. It makes even regular water look so tempting – can you imagine what it would be like if you made some pink lemonade and placed it at the center of the table? And, on days when you’d like to put together a hasty decoration for your dining room, it can double as a flower vase as well.
2. Glassware Set
Now that you have a glass pitcher, it only makes sense to pair it up with appropriate glassware. No way are you going to pour the drink from a fancy pitcher into Styrofoam glasses. You can pick a decent set of 6-8 glasses from supermarkets and thrift shops for a very reasonable price and it sets the mood of the party instantly. Who can resist drinks served in fancy glassware with ice-cubes tinkling away merrily in it?
3. Swizzle Sticks
If you have cocktails, you must have swizzle sticks. For less than $5 you can get an entire packet of swizzle sticks, which you could use to create a really clubby-beachy kind of mood in your house. Half the beauty of the drinks is in the presentation and it takes so very little to jazz that up, don’t you think?
Serving some snacks along with drinks? Buy a few ceramic platters and bowls to add a dash of color to the festivities. In fact, if you browse through the stuff in Bed, Bath and Beyond, you’ll even come across some carved wood platters that will fit your pocket. Even if you are serving nothing more than chips and peanuts, it makes a whole lot of difference when the container is attractive and presentable. Beats plastic packets and plates any day!
5. Napkins with Fun Patterns
When you have so many snacks, there are bound to be greasy fingers and you don’t want those oily patches on your couch or cushions, do you? While you could have some cloth napkins to cover contingencies of this kind, they usually work out to be more expensive than their paper counterparts and you are stuck with the additional chore of washing them after the party.
Paper napkins, on the other hand, are inexpensive and are disposable once the day is over. You really can’t beat the convenience of these things. And considering the vast array of designs and patterns available out there, you will never run out of choices or variety!
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