A Step-by-Step Guide to Planning the Perfect At-Home Party

— September 26, 2019

A Step-by-Step Guide to Planning the Perfect At-Home Party

There are so many things in this life that deserve a proper celebration…birthdays, graduations, weddings, new babies, friendship, holidays — the list goes on. While these are supposed to be joyous occasions, if you’re playing host at home for a party, it can sometimes become more stressful than fun, especially if you don’t know where to begin. Let us break the planning process down for you, so you can host the perfect at-home party every time.

Start With the Basics

What is the event? Start with the reason you’re hosting the party. Maybe it’s an anniversary celebration for your closest friends, a graduation for a young relative and shower for a first mother. Whatever the occasion, this will help guide your planning from the start. 

Who is invited? Typically, one of the most important parts of planning a party at home is the guest list. Once you have a reason to celebrate, look at who you want to be there with you. You can estimate that about 70-80 percent of your invitees will attend, so keep that in mind.

Date and time? Look at your schedule and ask your most important guests when would work best! It’s best to send party invitations three weeks before your party date for birthday parties or general celebrations.

How to send your invite? The next natural to-do is to get your invites out! You can print and mail invites or design and email them by using online services like Minted and Punchbowl. If it’s an informal party, you can always just send a standard email, call or text your guests as well! 

Create Your Game Plan

Next, it’s important to break down everything you’ll need for the event. Here are some typical considerations for an at-home party: 

  • Food and beverage that will wow your guests and make the evening memorable
  • Décor that will bring your event to life, make your theme pop and look great in photos 
  • A fun theme to complement food and decor
  • Rental items like dishware and glasses, extra chairs, linens, etc.
  • Staffing needs if you have a large party 
  • Pre-event cleaning and set-up

Fun Event Theme for Party at Home

Once you have your list, break it down based on what you’ll do yourself and what you’ll want help with from a caterer and external vendors. Think about the number of guests you’ll be having. Do you want to be responsible for cooking and bussing plates throughout the event, or do you want to bring in professionals to help you so you can enjoy? You can choose to have the party fully staffed or do a take-away option to bypass cooking.

Craft the Perfect Menu

The food and beverage is always the highlight for any party, right? So, it’s important to make it the best it can possibly be! That’s where we can come in and help. No matter the occasion, we have incredible options for any celebration on our Take-Away Menu or our Off the Menu Menu. The options are completely customizable; you can have the full event catered, or simply pick up some staples like desserts or apps that you don’t have time to cook.

If you’re hosting a casual afternoon grad party, think about the following menu items: 

  • Cocktail Sandwich Platter — Silver dollars rolls filled with black forest Ham, mesquite smoked turkey Breast or roast beef layered with a roma tomato and lettuce. With mayonnaise, creole mustard and creamy horseradish sauce.
  • Caprese Salad Skewers — Fresh mozzarella, grape tomatoes and basil.

Cocktail Sandwich Platter

Finally, a specialty cake by our bakers for your grad!

If you’re hosting an elevated evening to celebrate a milestone birthday for your best friend, these selections are fitting: 

  • Antipasto Platter — Variety of olives, marinated artichokes, assorted cheeses and smoked meats, served with French bread
  • Penne Pasta With Sun-dried Tomatoes Shrimp
  • Mini Beef Wellington — Tender beef, creamed spinach and mushrooms served in individual puff pastry

Penne Pasta at Party

For a bridal brunch, the following dishes are great staples: 

  • Blackberry French Toast Casserole — Layers of bread cubes and cream cheese drizzled with blackberry jam
  • Quiche Lorraine with ham, onion and Swiss cheese
  • Brie and Raspberry Crepe — Whipped brie cheese sweetened with Swiss seedless raspberry jam. Piped in a mini crepe shell and garnished with fresh raspberry.

Welcome everyone with glasses of bubbly or a specialty cocktail to really wow your guests! 

The Devil is in the Details

Beyond the menu, consider all the special touches that will elevate your event. If it’s a Cinco de Mayo fiesta, grab sombreros for centerpieces. If it’s a bridal brunch, make the wedding colors pop with colored linens and special favors. 

Wedding Shower

We can help create a one-of-a-kind backdrop for your party, provide all the china if you don’t have enough, provide a bartender and more. One of the positives of bringing in a caterer is the years of experience you’ll have on your side to run through each detail one-by-one.

Final Prep

Clean the house, go through the plan for the day with your vendors and helpers, set up all your décor – and Let’s Party!

Contact us today for all your at-home party catering and service needs!

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