Tuesday, November 10, 2009
I received this fabulous email today from the P.R. team at Yardley of London.
As we head towards the Holidays, filled with parties, here are some great tips to ensuring your guests feel relaxed and at home, in your home. With their permission, I am sharing it with you. Here goes:
Phenomenal flower arrangements and fabulous food are nice, but often it’s the little touches – the ones that cost next to nothing - that make the differences between a good party and a party you’ll never forget. In the frantic days before the party, these are also the things you are most likely to forget - or triage to save your sanity.
Here are a few simple things you can do to summon your inner hostess-with-the-mostess and make your house feel just a little bit more like the palace you – and your guests – so richly deserve.
* Nothing screams “frat party” like asking your guests to dig through a pile on the guest room bed for their coats Clear out a closet or two and dump your stuff somewhere instead. While you’re at it, give the dry cleaner back all those hangers and get a few decent padded ones for your guests
* Here’s a foolproof way to kill a party’s energy: Hand Aunt Marge the salad tongs, stick her in the middle of the buffet line, and wait, and wait, and wait as she painstakingly selects each individual leaf of lettuce. Avoid the agony – and ensure everyone actually gets fed – by breaking up the buffet. Send Marge off to the salad station – somewhere across the room. Put the cocktail meatballs in one corner and the pasta in another. You’ll bust up the line and, as an added bonus, give everyone an excuse to cross the room and introduce themselves to someone new. No cost
* Face it – the room more people at your party are going to visit than any other is the bathroom, so making a good impression here is important, and it’s also easy. Replace your hand towels with colorful paper cloths and your plain bar soap with a natural or botanical bar from Yardley to add a little bit of class to the guest bath, master bath or any sink or vanity area. Yardley natural and botanical soaps come in a range of subtle fragrances and are pretty, usable treats to have in the loo. Guests love little touches of luxury and this one you can accomplish at your local drug store. Hand cloths $3.99 Yardley Soaps $1.49 for Botanicals, $2.49 for Naturals.
* It’s all fun and games until someone whips out the cell phone and starts checking messages. Suddenly, it occurs to everyone else that maybe they need to check in with the boss, the babysitter and … The texting, emailing and voice-mail checking begin and the fun ends, right there. Head this off at the pass by greeting your guests as they come in with a half-full tray of drinks and a box of stickers. Offer a trade: A drink for your cell phone. Pick up the glass, pick a sticker to label the cell phone so you can identify it later, and drop the phone on the tray. Voila. Let the party begin – and continue. Stickers under $4.
* The temptation when you are prepping the house for a party is to live by the “when in doubt, put it away,” rule. So we shelve the coffee table books, stick some of the more – ahem – colorful fridge magnets in a drawer and finally take down that hideous painting your husband’s family gave you and you felt obligated to hang up. This party, don’t. In fact, do just the opposite. Got those funny letters and words you can make poems with on the fridge? The better to warm up the conversation my friend. Open a few extra coffee table books. You never know if that picture of Mt. Kilimanjaro just might loosen up the tongue of your terribly shy next door neighbor. Hideous art can be great for a laugh – even if it’s at your expense. The point is that the more there is to look at it, the more there is for your guests to talk about, bond over and giggle with. No cost – just use what you have.
I love a dash of good common sense! Thanks Yardley of London (ye of my first frosted pink lipsticks in the orange, white and pink striped tubes).